You searched for lelo luna — Dangerous Lilly

Jan 232013
 

LELO Luna Beads NoirAs someone who vastly prefers grey & black to pastel shades, you would think I would love the Luna Beads Noir. After all, one of the very few aspects that I didn’t love about the Luna Beads from the very beginning was the color scheme – kinda practical/clinical/boring. And I admit I do indeed love the look of the Luna Beads Noir. But the thing is, vag balls are not a fashion accessory. Nobody is going to see them. I don’t wear them on my wrist, or loop them around a lanyard. So the only thing that I can think of as to why Lelo produced these, is to capitalized a little more on the Fifty Shades crap. And yes, that is a factor in the production of the Noir beads. I didn’t feel that the Minis were anything to do with the Fifty Shades crap, because I had read numerous reviews in the past where some women stated that the Original Luna Beads were a bit too big to be comfortable for them. But the overpriced singular pair of Luna Noir in their graphite color scheme? Totally Fifty Shades. I even asked Lelo about that aspect and this was the response:

Fifty Shades did have some influence on the creation of Luna Beads Noir, since we had feedback from consumers to make a more sensual version of the world’s best selling sexual wellness product that is more focused on intense foreplay sensations. Luna Beads Noir are smaller for easier insertion and extraction and are a heavier weight compared to our classic version for stronger, more pleasurable sensations.

However, to me, Luna Beads Noir set is a bit of a head scratcher. They come only in one size – the mini size – and just one weight! The heavier weight. If you’ve never used a kegel bead set I wouldn’t recommend jumping right to using the full set of these. I did that once after going a long time without using any kegel exercisers and I actually had sore, overworked PC muscles the next day, akin to overworked abs after doing way more crunches on the first day back to the gym than you really should have attempted. You could use just one bead at first; I would only recommend using one bead though if your kegels are toned, you consider yourself to have a tighter vagina, and truly do not prefer dildos above 1.25″. Otherwise?

You might very well find yourself doing….whatever it is you do whilst wearing fancy Luna Beads…and out of your pant leg rolls your singular Luna Bead.

 Ahem.

Anyways. Since I’ve noted that these are the same size as the Minis that I recently reviewed (and did not like) I also wanted to note that Lelo fixed the problem that I and a few others reviewers had with the initial run of the Luna Minis – the inner weighted ball is back to how it should be, covered in rubber to muffle the rattling sound. But just as with the Minis, the issue is that the weighted ball is too large to produce any real noticeable sensations for me. The less room the weighted ball has to move around, the less you’ll feel it. So to me, not only does it fail as a kegel exerciser (which doesn’t seem to be the intended use if I read Lelo’s answer) but it fails as an “intense foreplay” toy. It was really hard to capture this because of how dark the Noir beads plastic is, but you can see pretty well in the photo below how much more “wiggle room” that weighted ball has in the Original set on the left. I couldn’t show this with my set of the Minis because my weighted balls appeared to be a bit smaller due to the lack of a rubberized coating.

lunabeads

The materials are the same, the care instructions are the same as all other Luna Bead sets.

Luna Beads Original vs Luna Beads Noir

Given the price factor I don’t really feel like these are worth the money. I do like the look better; hell I’m the girl who wanted a new Acuvibe because it came in black and to replace my Devine Play Chest because it was out in a black-on-black (instead of my pink-on-black). If Lelo had made the Noir set as simply another color option to the Originals and Minis and kept the whole system the same I’d tell you that it’s just a color preference. But the Original and Mini set both have the graduated 4-ball weight set that I’ve always loved so much, priced at $42.99 (the not-on-sale price at EF). So when I saw that the Noir set, which only included 2 balls, was $35.99 I felt even more reluctant to recommend them. I’ve always preferred the Luna Beads to any other kegel system out there but the Noir set, as it stands, is another story altogether.

Lelo Luna Beads, Noir set feature 1 set of two 37-gram plastic beads held together in a silicone cradleThe Lelo Luna Mini Beads feature a set of two 28-gram and two 37-gram beads is made with FDA-approved and phthalate-free ABS/ silicone.The Original Luna Beads Kegel Exerciser Balls. Two pairs of variably weighted balls and silicone cradle for pelvic exercise

Nov 162012
 

Lelo Luna Beads Mini vs OriginalSame thing, only smaller.

That’s what I said when I first got these and it’s still pretty much true. The set seemed identical in design, weights and colors to the original Luna Beads – but when you really examine things closer, there’s one flaw: the inner weighted bead, which is responsible for making the  Lelo Luna Beads work, is the same size as the weighted bead inside the Luna Beads original. This means there is much less empty space inside for it to rattle around, and it ends up giving your vagina less of a workout. I’ve had readers complain that the Mini set didn’t do a whole lot for them in terms of strengthening the PC muscles, and some couldn’t even feel movement.  The size of the Lelo Luna Beads Mini, both external and internal bead, is the same as the Lelo Luna Beads Noir. You can see from the photo below how much less space there is for the weighted bead to roll around and do its thing. 

Lelo Luna Beads Mini look just like the Lelo Luna Beads Noir, on the right. Both are flowed in design compared to the Lelo Luna Beads Original

And then we have the fact that the weighted ball inside of the plastic bead is naked metal. I own two sets of Lelo Luna Bead Original and in both, that weighted bead is coated in something so that the sound of metal on hard plastic isn’t so loud. I have no idea why they didn’t do this with the Mini Luna Beads Pleasure System. The noise difference between the two is huge. Again, readers have contacted me and complained about the noise.

I could hear the Mini’s rattling around inside of me but that was from an internal POV. Externally it wasn’t super bad but I think in a public, very quiet place I would feel self-conscious. There was the occasional rattle but it could be passed off as something else. However, Lorax recorded the sound her set made as she wore them, and the noise is quite obvious. Is the sound dampened for me because of my weight? Hard to say.

So I guess the question is….why should you purchase the Lelo Luna Beads Mini? If you have tried any of the other kegel beads on the market (or the Luna Original) and felt that they were uncomfortably large then try out the Luna Minis. You may not get as good of a workout. I really tend to not recommend these anymore. If you’re happy with the Original size or similar in other beads, then I’d say pass. They’re created especially for women who cannot tolerate much girth – contrary to the bullshit some stores are selling, these are NOT the preferred size for “women who haven’t birthed a child”, which is what one reader was told. I’ve never birthed a baby and I can tolerate the Original set just fine, and prefer it.

The only other kegel bead set on the market that these can be compared to is the awful Bedroom Kandi Hold on to Me set; these are larger that the BK beads.

Oct 302012
 

When I re-reviewed the Lelo Luna beads, I asked lots of questions of Lelo. I was told that one could boil them for no more than 5 minutes to help remove any lingering stains and/or better clean the nylon pull string. Seemed reasonable, but I didn’t yet try it.

Recently, a reader wrote and told me that she did this and her beads melted a bit, became deformed. I confirmed that she followed the “no more than 5 minutes” and promptly put her in touch with my Lelo rep so that her beads could be replaced. Lelo told me then to update and say that one should place a washcloth or something in the bottom of the pot to prevent the beads from banging around in metal. So I changed it, and then I heard from a few more readers who were STILL having problems with melting. This advice has since been updated and now is:

Pour boiling water over the Luna Beads whilst they are in a bowl and let them soak for up to 5 minutes. This will prevent the beads from coming into contact with the very hot bottom of the pot, which is what could deform the beads……not the water.

If you’ve previously dropped them in a pot of boiling water and had any damage, please do let Lelo know or let me know. I’m sure they will replace your damaged beads for you. I really do wish that these instructions would have been tested and further clarified before I made them public, but hopefully this info will reach enough people.

UPDATE: AGAIN:  I received an email from someone and I have contacted my latest rep at Lelo for clarification – see below the reader’s email for Lelo’s response. Frankly, I’m pissed. They gave me false information once before and now this? I don’t know what to believe anymore. My best advice NOW, if you’re dealing with a discolored string, is to clean it in a very mild bleach solution. Let it soak only a few minutes and then rinse, and let it soak and rinse twice more in clean water. If the plastic discolors, contact Lelo. You have a warranty on these, use it. According to the latest from LELO, boiling water should still be fine. Since this person purchased the Minis when they had the uncoated metal ball, I’m thinking that that run of Minis was defective altogether. I don’t think that the uncoated metal ball was intentional, but who knows.

Hello Lilly,

I own the Luna Beads Mini and the string became discoloured after a few weeks of washing with just soap and water, so I did a Google search for “how to sanitize luna beads” and yours was the first site that came up.

I followed your advice from the LELO rep (I put the beads in a bowl, added water from a kettle and let them sit for less than 5 minutes). Unfortunately, one of the beads must have had a weak seam because this treatment allowed water to enter the bead. I have the old version of the Minis with the bare metal ball and now the ball is rusting due to the trapped moisture.

I contacted LELO and they are sending me a replacement, but after my experience I will not expose the replacement beads to boiling water. The manual says to NEVER expose the Luna Beads to extreme heat, and the customer service rep who handled my claim warned me that boiling the Luna Beads voids the warranty.

Either there is some inconsistency among LELO reps or they have updated their cleaning advice again.

LELO updated me:

Boiling LUNA Beads in the way I explained before is a fine method for cleaning. We do apologize if our Customer Care representative passed on the information that it automatically voided the warranty for LUNA Beads to your reader, but as I understand we did continue to honor the warranty in this case.

As to what it says in the user manual about “extreme heat,” we are trying to make sure customers do not expose their LELO products to unnecessary heat such as intense, direct sunlight over sustained periods of time, or trying to sterilize in a flame directly/ boil them incorrectly etc…

 

I’ve been contacted a few more times by people who have damaged their Luna Beads following the instructions I posted.  Many times, they were ignored by LELO customer service. They never had a response. Or they were told that they did something that broke the warranty. I was able to get them help by contacting LELO on social media.

May 122012
 

It’s a bit of a long story regarding how I came to be reviewing the Lelo Luna Beads for a second time, but basically I lost the bead holster of my original set of Luna Beads that I reviewed way back in 2008 and I just happened to put them on my Wishlist. I put them on the wishlist more as a personal reminder that I wanted to replace them but I ended up getting them to review, along with the updated version of the Lelo Mia. By now I’m sure you’ve read tons of reviews on the Luna Beads so I’m going to start out this review with a few facts and dispelling of myths; things you’ve probably not read much about.

1. The “retrieval leash” on the Luna Beads has come under fire by many reviewers who don’t understand the overall design. It kind of looks like a tampon string, sure. But it’s not exactly absorbent. It’s made of nylon and is a very hygienic material. More importantly, this material is compatible with the way the Luna Beads are made which leads me to point #2…..

2. Luna Beads are not held together with glue. They are sealed together with an ultra-sonic welding technology, and the nylon cord was one of the only materials compatible with this technique. This method of securing the two halves of the outer ABS plastic balls leads me to point #3….

3. You can boil the Luna Beads for easy cleaning and sanitizing. YES. You can BOIL the Luna Beads.The beads, the holder, everything. Toss it all in and have some Luna soup. **Please note that you should not boil the beads for longer than 5 minutes. You should not place them in a metal pot directly; either place a silicone colander inside the pot OR place the beads in a bowl and pour boiling water over them. If the beads touch the bottom of the pot, there is a chance they could deform, as the pot bottom is hotter than boiling water**

Luna Beads – Why the Nylon Cord?

I talked to Lelo and found out that they spent years working on the design of the Luna Beads and that they were delayed the most with the retrieval leash. They tried many things but finally settled on nylon. The combination of the material and the way Lelo Luna Beads are made means that it’s going to take a LOT of force to break these or have that nylon retrieval leash come apart from the bead. You’ll probably never need to use that kind of force to remove them from your vagina. Some people have almost vilified this retrieval cord in their reviews, saying that it ruins the material safety issues but really….who are you going to be sharing these with?? These are meant to be a Kegel/PC muscle exerciser (not a sex toy) and they were never intended to be used anally. I recently reviewed one of the only other sets of Kegel balls that come in a varied-size set similar to the Lune Bead system, the Bedroom Kandi Hold On To Me, and at first it seemed like they were trying to improve upon the Lelo design. With the HOTM beads, the retrieval leash is part of the bead holster (which means you need 2 holsters…1 for using a single bead and 1 for using the double bead set). AND it’s incredibly stretchy, turning it into a rubber-band weapon dangling from your vagina, just waiting for slippery fingers to let go so that it can snap your bits like the 4th grade bully who sat behind you. The Luna Beads nylon cord is not stretchy at all, and it is a loop design, making it easy to grasp and pull out.

The Lelo Luna Beads retrieval cord is embedded in the plastic, part of the ultra-sonic welding that keeps the two halves of the Luna Bead together. This means that the nylon cord won't break or pull out.

Body-Safe Materials

The Beads themselves are made from ABS plastic1, which is a body-safe material free of phthalates, latex or other bad softening agents.  ABS plastic is non-porous. The bead weights are color-coded (pink beads are 28 grams each, blue beads are 37 grams), rather than a stupid painted-on design which rubs off after the second use. The plastic beads have actually changed slightly since I first got mine in 2008. I had noticed that more recent product photos showed that the beads were a little more “fancy” looking than mine – mine were pink and blue, sure, but had a very slight yellowish cast to the color and the plastic was slightly frosted. The newer beads have a truer pink and blue hue (more noticeable to me with the pink) and the plastic is more clear. All in all it’s a slight design change but it makes the beads look a bit less clinical. They are not, however, as shiny and color-saturated as some of the product photos floating around retailer sites.

Lelo Luna Beads - Lelo has slightly changed their plastic used for the Luna Beads, resulting in a better color

The bead holster is easier to use than the Bedroom Kandi set; the silicone is matte finish with a slight texture and isn’t very stretchy at all – just stretchy and soft enough to slide the beads in. If lined up just so, the holster will completely cover the hatch-like markings where the bead halves are welded together. Of course for use purposes it’s not exactly necessary, especially for the bead without the retrieval leash. And yes, the holster IS silicone; it passed the silicone flame test. Babeland has listed that the girdle/bead holder is medical-grade silicone but the Lelo site says “FDA approved” and I’ve been told by them that all of their silicone is food-grade. Food-grade silicone isn’t any less body-safe than medical-grade for sex toy purposes.

Cleaning (and boiling) the Luna Beads

I’d never heard before that you could boil the Luna Beads for a better clean. I think I’d just assumed that they would fall apart. Well, they won’t, because glue is not used. And water will not get inside. With my first set of Luna Beads, I did not clean the retrieval leash very well and it ended up yellowing slightly. I talked to Lelo about this and was told that a simple wash with your favorite anti-bacterial toy cleaner followed by a quick 5-minute boil would ensure that there is no staining and every part of the design will be sanitized. Just remove the beads from the holster to ensure that everything gets cleaned.
ETA Oct 17 2012: A reader contact me to tell me that she boiled her Luna beads, and they became disfigured. Lelo is replacing them for her, and it was emphasized that you should not boil these for any longer than 5 minutes. I think that I was told before about a 5-minute boil but it was not emphasized that it should not be any longer than 5 minutes at max. I was also told this time that when boiling, do so in a large pot….where there is enough water so that the Luna Beads don’t touch the pot or each other.

Pleasure? Beads?

Lelo calls these “Pleasure Beads“. When I first experimented with sex toys and saw those cheap, metal “Ben Wa” balls in the sex toy catalog I wasn’t sure exactly how to use them but I’d heard they were for sex. I couldn’t imagine having sex with some balls stuffed in my vagina! Let me assure you that the Luna Beads are not meant for use during sex. They’re not even really meant to give you an orgasm. What they are meant to do though is strengthen the Kegel/PC muscles (without any effort on your part) and in turn that will give you stronger orgasms and more pleasurable PIV sex. It will also contribute to a healthier bladder and fewer accidents when you sneeze (if you’re young enough that you don’t know what I mean by that last statement, then STFU and I hate you).

Believe me, these work, and you don’t even have to do anything. I know because once, after being away from the Luna Beads for too long, I thought I’d just go ahead and step right on up to  2 blue balls at once. Not only did I skip ahead a few steps but I probably wore them for a few hours longer than I should have. The next day my PC muscles were sore – just like any other muscle would be if I exercised too much. I can never remember to do active Kegel exercises, so these things are great for me.

I’ve heard from some women that they can feel them moving easily, some cannot feel them, and some are bothered by the movement. It’s actually not so much the large Luna Bead moving around inside of you, but the smaller weighted bead rattling around and pinging off the sides of the plastic ball. Whenever the weighted bead taps your vaginal wall, your PC muscles automatically contract just a tiny bit. The muscle contraction is not something I’ve ever felt. But this is how they work those muscles without requiring you to clench and release yourself. Over the course of a few hours you’ll have achieved the same level of Kegel exercise as if you’d done 4 or 5 “sets” of active exercises throughout the day. These only work if you’re mobile, however, not if you’re sedentary. It’s best to insert them before you go for a walk, run errands, or anything slightly active. The more active you are, the more these weighted beads will rattle around inside the plastic shell and the more your muscles will be tapped.

A lot of women find that wearing the Luna Beads will increase vaginal secretion (during use) and the mere presence of something subtly moving can increase natural arousal. But, please, don’t call these a “sex toy”.

Some reviews I’ve read have claimed that these are “noisy”. Rest assured, there is no discernible noise whatsoever to anyone other than you. You are simply “hearing”/feeling an internal activity. To you it seems noticeable but it definitely is not to anyone else. The metal Ben Wa balls I once owned had a bizarre musical tinkling sound whenever they moved. Lelo Luna Beads have a rubber-coated weight which is virtually silent when they’re in your body.

And the Winner is…

I’ve owned and worn exactly once a set of Fun Factory Smart Balls which did absolutely nothing for me – I hated the size, the design, and the inability to change out the weights. As I already mentioned, the Bedroom Kandi Hold on to Me balls had visual appeal but lacked in common sense or material safety. Another set of sort-of progressive weighted kegel beads is the Je Joue Ami set; I’ve not tried them but Epiphora has and I agree with her assessment: Bizarre design and what is UP with this stretchy retrieval cord again??

  1. Babeland says that the beads are made from a blend of Polycarbonate and ABS plastic, but the Lelo site simply says ABS plastic
Mar 272009
 

Since this review is pretty old, I should direct you to the updated review of the Lelo Luna Beads; a word about boil cleaning the Luna Beads; and a comparison of the new Luna Mini beads vs Original Luna Beads.

cat_luna-beads_360_360

I once tried a cheapo pair of Benwa balls – and promptly gave up on them. They were too small and I just couldn’t keep them in. The Luna Beads are better and different. They’re a little larger, but small enough to serve their purpose. You can vary the weights by using just one bead, or two or by combining one of each color.

Continue reading »

Jun 152016
 

A telling conversation on Twitter about Lelo's feelings on our anger about partnering with Sheen for the Lelo Hex. When asked why they are working with someone who has assaulted women, Lelo responds by saying they are not endorsing his past, that this is about promoting condom usage and preventing STIs. How many new sex toys has Lelo put out in the last 3 years that have made reviewers wonder “Did they even test this on a human first?”. But hey, prototyping, that would be the smart way to go. It also costs money, so Lelo is going to avoid that. Instead, they’re going to continue to make products that are often more miss than hit; they’re going to hype them up and add gimmicks like scent or music-responsive capabilities. They’re going to angle for that celeb market that Jimmyjane tried to corner years ago with their Little Platinum and Little Gold vibrators – they’ve started offering 24K gold plated versions of their half-assed sex toys. They’ve made offensive ad campaigns but nothing has angered the sex-positive, feminist community (and, arguably, well beyond) like their Lelo Hex condom.

FYI: The links to other articles are worth full reads. I couldn’t make umpteen quotes from them all so trust me on this one: You want to read these.

Why? Because they chose to use a celebrity who has been charged with domestic abuse on partners time and time again. Sarah chronicles this well, starting off with this gem:

If you only know Charlie Sheen as a man of negligible talent whose body composition is probably 13% cocaine, you might not be familiar with the night he spent in jail after assaulting his then-wife, Brooke Mueller. This was in 2009. He was charged with felony menacing, third-degree assault, and “mischief”. He was released on $8,000 bond. He pleaded guilty to misdemeanor assault as part of a plea bargain and never set foot in jail for this crime again.

The comments have been furious and plenty on social media. I gathered up just a very small fraction of the best tweets about the Lelo Hex debacle; it should give you a pretty good idea of the flaws people are finding with their decision to partner with Charlie Sheen AND their condom design which makes it pretty imperceptible that there’s a hole/break. Just what we all want, right?

Lelo’s response has been to basically not give any fucks about the haters and just continue on sticking their heads in the sand. As written in the New York Times

Steve Thomson, LELO’s chief marketing officer, said in an email that Mr. Sheen was “the perfect choice for LELO, a tragic reflection of the current situation in sexual health of today, but more importantly, a symbol of change with the strength and the courage to confront key issues head on.”

And that is really the heart of the problem, and my primary reason for putting them on my Blacklist. They give NO fucks about their retailers, the sex educators, the bloggers, and their customers. Don’t believe me? This comment on my post that details all of my grievances with Lelo over the years is from someone in the industry who needs to remain anonymous:

I think the thing that upsets me the most is that Lelo – or at least the individual(s) at Lelo that are in charge of creating the most recent rounds of campaigns – simply don’t care.

I don’t say that as a ‘they obviously don’t care as they’d be back tracking if they did’. I say that as someone who is acquainted with at least one individual who orchestrates these decisions, as far back as the Pino shitstorm. I watched their personal Twitter account and their interactions with their peers who were asking them WTF they were thinking. They were proud of it. They *are* proud of their Hex work, and have made that abundantly clear.

They. Don’t. Care.

Publicity is publicity to them – negative doesn’t matter. They referred to sex bloggers and educators who were rightfully questioning their decisions as ‘whiney SJWs’. Our opinions mean zero to them – and in fact, the more we tweet, the more they can say they’re the hottest topics of conversation.

They feel they are too big to fall, too trenched in the industry to lose out. The more attention, the better even if it’s folks throwing out their Lelo toys in mass droves and swearing off never working with them again.

They. Don’t. Care.

I am not supporting the Lelo Hex. As Bryan Menegus at Gizmodo aptly put it: “Safe sex is important, and everyone should wear a condom. It just doesn’t have to be this one.” I am not supporting Lelo. I’ve spent 2 years actively trying to recommend other brands to people instead of Lelo, but some items are just (unfortunately) better than the competition. Not many, but a few. However, every single review I have published for them will link to this post. Every extraordinarily reluctant and infrequent recommendation will come with this post as a warning. I am done reviewing their products; if you are a reader and want to know MY opinion on their new items….sorry. I can’t do it. I won’t do it.

2r6ft54

One more choice quote that I have to pull; from Menegus’ article at Gizmodo, linked above: [the Lelo demonstrator/employee?] also insisted on showing me that, once fully unrolled, the HEX has the word “respect” printed in some sort of latex bas relief at its base. “Respect, what?” I asked, genuinely unsure of the message’s implications. “Respect the man who wears it,” was his impromptu answer. 

Further reading: 

Molly’s Daily Kiss – Is it just a big Con dom?

Ninja Sexology- Hex no, Lelo

The CSPH – Video: Why The CSPH Store No longer stocks Lelo

A small sampling of the many people on Twitter who proclaimed outrage and/or boycotting promises when the announcement came out.

The comments to my Tumblr post show even more people boycotting Lelo – this goes beyond educators and bloggers

The Smitten Kitten: Writing about why they won’t be stocking Lelo products

Educator Jill McDevitt with her thoughts about Lelo, and her boycott

Cara Sutra: When a Condom Fails

UK shop Sh! writes about their feelings on the launch party and the choice of Charlie Sheen as the rep

Horny Geek Girl, another blogger boycotting Lelo

The Daily Beast: Charlie Sheen’s Lelo Condom gets the shaft from sex bloggers

Because this whole thing needs a theme song:

 Posted by at 6:46 pm