Aug 172011
 

As I begin to prepare for the strong possibility of doing a Sex Toy Education Workshop, hosted by a friend, I’m finding that there’s so much information I want to share and I don’t know if I can get it all in.

The first half of the Workshop will be spent talking about the various sex toy materials; their safety rating, their mating habits, their lube preference. The second half will be spent teaching them how to shop for sex toys online – which will include teaching them about reviews.

When I first started buying sex toys it was from places like Adam & Eve and MyPleasure. My husband actually found MP because I’d not been impressed with A&E’s stuff. But the problem with buying sex toys online 6 years ago was that the reviews existed solely on the sex toy retailer’s site. You didn’t know who was writing it, what they had to compare it to, what type of toys they liked or even if it was a real person. Even to this day there are a few sites that have onsite paragraph reviews that just seem iffy – too much praise for a toy that I and others found lacking. I’d say that the first $200 worth of sex toys ended up being disappointments. Sure, the expensive Rabbit was amazing until it died after not too many uses. The only toy that’s survived from my first year of sex toy buying (or rather said, pre-reviewing) was a powerful yet cheap ass “pocket rocket” vibe that had the right type of vibrations for me.

I wish I’d known not to buy jelly toys, that’s a no-brainer. I wish I’d known then about the vibe-in-disguise that is the massager types – Hitachi, Wahl, Acuvibe, etc.

So my question to all my readers, and even the seasoned reviewers, is what mistakes did you make when you bought your first toys? What do you know now that you wish you’d known then? What information could someone have given you that might have resulted in purchases that were not a colossal waste of money? Or, what types of toys/materials had you seen but been too wary to purchase and what information about them changed your mind for the better?

  • Britni TheVadgeWig

    I wish I had know that internal vibrations are virtually useless.

    ~ Yeah, agreed. I’ve only come across one vibe that had strong enough and rumbly enough vibrations that it actually was awesome and not useless. Sadly, it had a useless clit portion attached. *sigh* can’t have everything….

  • Teagan Shepard

    1) Jelly sucks

    2) Silicone is worth paying for

    3) You tend to get what you pay for

    4) Sometimes even little vibes CAN be good

  • http://curvaceousdee.com/ Curvaceous Dee

    Penetration isn’t everything – while it can be awesome, often clitoral and vulval stimulation is much much better.

    Jelly really does suck – paying for quality is definitely worth it.

    Check for waterproofness if you tend to self-lubricate a lot and/or orgasm with much fluid!

  • http://mlleaurore.wordpress.com/ Aurore

    I wish someone had told me that while the Rabbit vibe is cute to shop around and research before making that choice.

    Do not go cheap with something you are putting inside or near your body. It doesn’t have to be the most expensive toy but if it’s $9.99 there’s a reason.

    Glass – I was afraid of it at first. Now I’ve grown to love it. Knowing that it’s made of out Pyrex grade stuff certainly opened me up to trying it.

  • http://topaz-gemology.blogspot.com Topaz

    Everyone has said it, but it seems you have to learn that jelly sucks on your own. The vendors don’t admit it, and I guess it sells well enough that it demands shelf space. If people understood the cheap quality and safety issues with the material before their first purchase, I wonder how many would dole out the money for silicone on something they aren’t sure is going to work for them?

  • http://www.buzzonvibes.com/ buzzvibe

    I’ve grown to loathe vibes that take awkward or hard to find batteries. I’m also a materials snob and prefer silicone to TPR.

  • http://heyepiphora.com Epiphora

    If it smells, you probably don’t want it near your genitals.

    If you shell out more cash, you can get something that will last forever.

    ~ Ugh yes, the smelly ones. But I’ve found that the over $100 toys are a let-down 75% of the time. Perhaps because I expect so much more of them? Hard to say.

  • http://www.swingersattic.com/ Miranda

    I was lucky with my very first purchase as a teen. I got myself an extremely basic vibrator simply because it was available in the store at a low cost and I didn’t know what I wanted.
    Later on my purchases didn’t go so well. A rabbit that lasted three uses, a jelly dong that turned sticky, and a egg with a string that leaked a rust in the cracks. I gave up and didn’t buy toys for years.

    I have hundreds now.
    Read reviews, read labels, don’t trust the fancy sales talk on the package, look for body safe materials and products that seem easy to clean, and if it looks chincy it probably is.

  • http://askgarnet.com Garnet Joyce

    Just because it looks like the toy you’re looking for doesn’t mean it is especially if you’re shopping based on price. Not that I could’ve afforded much more. There are a lot of cheap knockoffs that just don’t deliver.

    Materials of course. I don’t know how many yeast infections I’ve gotten from crappy toys in my first few years.

    Brands that can be trusted, and ones that can’t. Or, what brands are good for what types of toys.

    Keep in mind though that price isn’t everything. There are a lot of good cheap ABS plastic vibes out there. They may not last you forever, but for $10-20 they make a great first vibrator. Think silver bullets, pocket rockets, slimlines, Blueberry Bliss, etc. When I worked in a shop I always pointed first timers to toys that were less than $30 and had a variety of speeds. The goal was to help them figure out what they liked so they knew what to get in the future. If they spend $100 on their first vibe and don’t like it, they’re less likely to experiment than if they spend $15.

    For the record: all reviews at MyPleasure are from real customers and staff. Staff reviews are marked as such. The only reviews we don’t publish are offensive or triggering ones. I’m also trying to motivate more of our blogger reviewers to leave reviews on the product pages so customers can get perspective from someone who has more experience.

  • http://afemalesperspective.com Sabrina

    I wish I would have done research instead of just going to the store and picking up whatever looked good to me. Through research and trail/error I have established a huge collection. I would recommend that individuals take adavantage of the blogs out there that provide reviews. Specifically those blogs that provide both negative and positive reviews. Safety is also a huge issue. Everyone should be aware of what can and cannot come near their private parts. I hard to learn the hard way :-(.