One topic that I get asked a lot when I help people pick out sex toys is which wireless remote control vibrator I recommend for public play. Especially after the recent reviews of the Lelo Tiani and the We Vibe 3 people are hoping that finally something has come out on the market that isn’t the sex toy equivalent to what fast food really looks like – i.e. all hype with no delivery.
It saddens me that when people ask me to recommend a vibrator like this for public play, I can’t. And yes, I’ve seen them all. I played with a couple in the Seattle Babeland. I know how to read reviews1 and so far not one wireless remote controlled vibrator on the market does what they claim to do. If they claim to run “whisper quiet”2 then that is either an outright lie or it means that the vibrations are surface, buzzy and barely a tickle. Vibrating panties are pretty much always cheaply constructed and “one size fits most” which means the opposite. And for some reason the transmission from remote to toy is fickle at best. A lot of women like to actually insert these eggs internally (which I personally wouldn’t but that’s me) which means that now there’s not just fabric as a barrier between the remote and the toy, but flesh and bone.
A common complaint with many wireless remote controlled vibrators is that the remote control holder doesn’t have a damn clue what’s going on. They push a button and that’s it. Lelo, as you all know, set out to majorly change that and give the person holding the remote a much more active role in the process with their Sensemotion technology. The Club Vibe 2.OH from OhMiBod has a remote that kinda fixes that…except that it lights up, the remote is huge and it’s not at all discreet. The Club Vibe (both original and 2.Oh) is buzzy and weak, it looks uncomfortable and the 2.Oh has a button you must push on the vibrator to start it up and it lights up, too. I hope you don’t wear this in public with clothing that would show the lit up button through it! Many of these wireless remote controlled vibrators take batteries – weird batteries, lots of batteries and go through them at a rapid pace. Many of these sex toys also require the remote control for the vibrator to work (except for the We Vibe 3) so if that dies or gets lost, you’re out of luck.
Almost wireless remote controlled vibes are expensive. Really expensive. And thus far I’ve not really found one that justifies the price. The We Vibe 3 probably has the best type of vibrations, it doesn’t require the remote for use and the remote doesn’t required batteries plus the vibrator is rechargeable; however the range of the remote is a paltry 10 feet, it doesn’t do well through clothing unless it’s very thing and it simply wasn’t ever marketed/made to be a public use toy. The remote is no-frills and the remote holder won’t know what is going on. What about strap-on vibrators, like the stupidly infamous piece of crap the Venus Butterfly and the many variations? If you enjoy having a large animal-shaped hunk of TPR in between your legs that muffles the paltry bullet vibe and gives you untold frustration, go for it.
Updated Dec ’12: The Lelo Tiani 2 Design Edition is Lelo’s answer to the first runs of the Tiani being less than awesome. They increased the vibration strength somewhat, they made the remote finally work like it should, and they made it so that you don’t absolutely need the remote for the toy to work. The vibrations are probably equal to the We-Vibe 3, however this is still not going to be as powerful as the corded bullets or the We-Vibe cordless/rechargeable Salsa/Tango. If she prefers stronger vibrations then you’re just simply not going to find anything to fit the bill if an orgasm is the end result. If the intention is merely to tease her mercilessly, then you’re in luck. I have to firmly stand behind my statement that a good, public-play vibrator doesn’t exist yet. One that would be worth the money would:
- Have a range of rumbly vibrations that could induce orgasm in most women
- Have a remote control that has We Vibe 3′s “10 year battery” or something
- Have a remote control that allows the controller to know (discretely) what setting it is on – perhaps a dial instead of a push-button with LED lights?
- Have the ability to transmit through flesh and clothing AND do this up to 30 feet away
- Not require the use of N-type batteries or watch batteries
- Have the ability to stay nestled between the labia and resting against the clitoris
So what is an adventurous couple to do? My only suggestion is not the ideal and involves cell phones and trust and some finagling. Get a regular, corded power-pack bullet with good rumbly vibrations. Have her position it and then thread the cord outside of her clothes and tuck it into her pocket or waistband. When her partner is nearby they can whisper directions to turn it off, on, up or down a level, etc. From across the room or wherever he can text her the same instructions. This isn’t easy, and it takes getting used to (but hey it worked for me during work hours with an internet partner for a year) but at least you won’t drop $50-$150 on a toy that doesn’t work very well. Oh and always have a spare set of batteries in your bag when you do this.
Update Jan ’14: The Lelo Tiani 2 mentioned above no longer exists. A court found that Lelo was infringing on the We-Vibe, and Tiani 2 can’t be sold in the US or Canada anymore. I’m not sure if it exists overseas. Lelo tried to come up with a “better” and different couples vibe, the Ida, but failed spectacularly.