Preventing Fleshlight Mold And Mildew (And What To Do If It’s Too Late)

Drying your Fleshlight completely is vital to preventing mold or mildew growth, but if it’s already happened, it can be removed — sometimes.
closeup photograph of a hand holding a fleshlight with the vulva facing the viewer, the surface of the material completely pristine and clean with no evidence of mold or mildew
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Updated:October 2023

While cleaning your Fleshlight is important to help prevent mold and mildew growth, drying it thoroughly is equally if not more so, because moisture left inside the sleeve can become a breeding ground for fungus.

Yes, you read that right — fungus, which is what mold and mildew are.

Key Takeaways:

  • Mold and mildew (which refers to flat types of mold) grow and spread on surfaces through spores that thrive only in moist environments. According to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), “there are many types of mold, and none of them will grow without water or moisture.”
  • Mold and mildew spores, which are invisible to the naked eye, land on moist surfaces and can begin to multiply if those surfaces remain wet — and that includes the inside and outside of your Fleshlight sleeve.
  • Cleaning a Fleshlight to remove debris from the sleeve is easy and involves just a few basic steps: rinsing well, ideally using Fleshwash (not soaps or detergents), and rinsing again.
  • Drying your Fleshlight sleeve thoroughly (and completely) will prevent mold and mildew growth by removing any moisture that can potentially lead to its growth.
  • Although very sparse mold or mildew spots can probably be removed from the surface of your Fleshlight sleeve with rigorous cleaning, a heavy buildup of fungi within the sleeve is going to be next to impossible to remove. If that happens, it’s time to replace it.

Cleaning your Fleshlight is of course vital to keeping your toy in great condition, but if you don’t dry the sleeve thoroughly — inside and out — mold and mildew growth can occur.

I probably don’t have to explain this, but putting your bare dick inside something that’s moldy is not a great idea and could potentially pose a health risk.

(Not to mention it’s just gross.)

How To Prevent Fleshlight Mold

photograph of justin holding a white fleshlight case in his hand

The most important thing you need to do to prevent mold and mildew from growing on the surface of your Fleshlight sleeve is to dry it completely after cleaning it.

As types of fungi, mold and mildew spread through tiny spores that land on wet surfaces and begin to multiply if those surfaces remain moist over time.

Mold and mildew (which is just a flat type of mold) thrive in damp environments and cannot grow without water or moisture.

Knowing this, the key to preventing Fleshlight mold and mildew is to ensure there’s no moisture left inside the sleeve between uses.

Drying your Fleshlight is easy and there are plenty of ways to do it properly, including:

There are also DIY Fleshlight drying methods including air drying (leaving it to sit out to dry), placing it in front of a fan, hanging it on a modified (bent) clothes hanger, or using a microfiber cloth, to name a few.

How To Clean And Dry Your Fleshlight Thoroughly

Proper Fleshlight care begins with cleaning and drying it thoroughly, and we’ll share step-by-step instructions below.

How To Spot Fleshlight Mold

photograph of product tester justin squinting as he looks inside of the riley reid utopia fleshlight

Mold and mildew can show up as spots or debris ranging in color from white to grey (generally mildew if flat), shades of green or black, (generally mold, which may even be fuzzy or slimy), depending on the type of spores.

There may also be a faint or strong musty odor associated with it.

Spotting Fleshlight mold or mildew is pretty easy when it’s on the outside of the sleeve, as you’ll likely see debris along the surface of it — but the inside of the sleeve is another story.

photograph of a fleshlight sleeve being stretched to show some of its inner texture

Fleshlight sleeves are thankfully pretty stretchy and using your hands, you can pull the orifice and sleeve open (carefully!) to inspect the inside of the sleeve.

You can also fold the bottom of the sleeve somewhat inside out (again, carefully) to inspect the surface of it for signs of debris, dark spots, and anything that doesn’t look like it belongs there.

aerial photograph of a fleshlight sleeve removed from its case to display its materials against a dark grey background

If you discover sparse mildew or mold on the surface, you can probably remove it with a good cleaning; if it’s heavily contaminated, you’re likely going to need to throw it away and get a new sleeve.

  • What If I Used A Moldy Fleshlight?

If you’ve discovered too late that you’ve used a moldy Fleshlight, take a breath and try to relax — you’ll probably be alright but wash your penis immediately and keep an eye on its surface to watch for any signs of irritation or infection.

(It likely goes without saying, but don’t try to clean your penis with bleach!)

Some people are very sensitive to mold, however, and symptoms from exposure can include:

  • Dry or scaly skin
  • Itchy or watery eyes
  • Sneezing
  • Coughing
  • Stuffy or runny nose

Those with a mold allergy and asthma may experience more severe symptoms that include shortness of breath, chest tightness, or wheezing and if you experience any of these after using a moldy Fleshlight, contact your doctor.

How To Salvage A Moldy Fleshlight

photograph of justin holding a fleshlight sleeve and a bottle of fleshwash cleaner in his hand

A Fleshlight that is growing mold or mildew may be salvaged if the growth is mild, has not penetrated beyond the surface of the sleeve, and you can completely remove it.

But not every moldy Fleshlight is going to survive rescue attempts.

Removing Surface Level Mold

The best way to remove surface-level mold is by using Fleshwash and gently wiping the surface of the sleeve (and the case, if it has one) with a soft, non-abrasive cloth.

Don’t try to scrub the inside of the sleeve with a bottle-cleaning brush or bristles that might further damage the sleeve’s material.

You can pull your cloth through the sleeve, using its friction and the cleaning solution to remove surface-level mold and mildew, and you can also carefully fold the sleeve inside out from the bottom if needed, scrubbing it by hand.

If the mold and mildew are removed completely through this method, you’re good to go — dry your Fleshlight thoroughly and be thankful that the successful effort worked.

Removing Deep Mold From A Fleshlight

I hate to burst your bubble and I won’t dissuade you from trying if you’re really determined, but you’re likely not going to be able to remove deep mold from your Fleshlight.

Mold can penetrate a surface deeply and if that’s already happened, no amount of scrubbing or cleaning solutions are going to fix the problem.

Some people suggest cleaning a moldy Fleshlight with bleach or even rubbing alcohol, but we advise against this.

Rubbing alcohol is more gentle compared to bleach, but the latter is a harsh chemical that will likely damage the sleeve’s material to the point that it’s not going to be usable again — even if you do manage to remove the mold.

When To Toss Out A Moldy Fleshlight

If you cannot remove surface mold and mildew from your Fleshlight sleeve, it’s simply time to throw it away and get a new one.

Luckily, Fleshlight sells sleeves on their own — for less than the cost of a new one complete with a case.

If you own a full-sized Fleshlight, you can simply buy any full-size sleeve you want and put it in the case you already have.

If You Need To Buy A New Fleshlight

Buying a new Fleshlight is easy and if you only need to purchase a replacement sleeve, the best place to do that is directly from Fleshlight, as they sell sleeves without the case.

They ship discreetly, and in our experience, very quickly — so you won’t be waiting for long and no one is going to know what you’ve purchased.

If you need to replace your Fleshlight sleeve and case — or if you’re simply looking for something new to try, our team’s favorite Fleshlight Girls are below.

Closing Thoughts

Proper cleaning of your Fleshlight is vital to keeping it in great condition (and safe!) but drying it thoroughly afterward will prevent mold and mildew from invading its surface.

Mild spots of mold or mildew may be removed from the surface of a Fleshlight sleeve but if you find they can’t be, it’s time to throw it away and get a new one.

Editor’s Note: This article is part of our Complete Guide To Fleshlights and Everything Fleshlight hub, in-depth and evolving resources that comprehensively explore and review all aspects of Fleshlights from the company’s discreet billing and shipping, to the types of products they carry, how to use them, materials, and safety.