Bearing in mind that STIs stand for “Sexually Transmitted Infections”, most people think it a no-brainer that you would have to have sex to catch one.

Not so fast. It is very possible to get an STI without having sex. LetsGetChecked has compiled a list of some of the surprising ways you can get an STI without having sexual intercourse.

You can contract an STI without having sex, and 80% of STIs do not present with symptoms.


Lip Balm

If someone applies lip balm to their lips near an infected area like a cold sore and you then use it you are at high risk of catching the virus. Even if a person isn’t experiencing a flareup, they can still spread the virus, according to women’s health expert Jennifer Wider. This also applies to things like lipstick and cigarettes.

Always, always, always carry your own lip products to avoid the chance of infection.

Sharing Razors

It might be tempting to borrow your roommate’s razor for a quick shave when you can’t find yours, but DON’T DO IT! When shaving, you’re exposing yourself to little nicks and scratches in the skin which act as open doors for an STD to enter your body. If you need a clearer picture, know that any direct contact with blood (possibly left on the razor from the infected person) can give you a virus or disease like herpes, HPV or Hepatitis B.

Sharing Towels

Bacteria builds up in towels each time they are used. Trichomoniasis is an STD caused by a tiny parasite known as Trichomanas vaginalis. It thrives in damp, moist conditions and can live outside the body for 45 minutes so towels are the perfect vehicle for them.

Do yourself a favour and BYOT (bring your own towel) whenever you need one.

Used Sex Toys

You’re probably not sharing your Rabbit with random people but before you think about handing over your vibrator to another person, clean and sterilize it before and after every use.

Reason: It’s been in the single place you’d most expect to transfer an STI, and even if it’s just been gathering dust under your bed, sex toys can pick up other bacteria and germs that you definitely don’t want down there.

Read: STD Symptoms In Women

Who We Are

LetsGetChecked empowers you in tracking and improving your health from the comfort of your own home. We are a patient-led, medical technology platform that is giving men and women the power to self-test for a range of health conditions.

Simply order your test online. Self-collect your sample at home. Return your sample to our accredited laboratories in a pre-paid self-addressed envelope. Receive your results in 2-5 days. LetsGetChecked will support you, every step of the way. In the event that your results are positive or outside a normal range, a fully certified doctor or nurse from the LetsGetChecked medical team will guide you through a personalized treatment program.

It’s good to know.

Written by Hannah Kingston | Approved by Medical Director Dominic Rowley