Oct 072016

Things That Happen When a Small Pack of Sex Toy Reviewers Descend Upon a Sex Toy Store

2016-10-01-14-12-41If you have a nice store that carries only body-safe products, like Sexploratorium in Philadelphia, then we slowly walk around as we point at the things we own and love, pet the things we don’t own but want, and talk with more authority than any regular customer would ever display. We get extraordinarily excited by a clear silicone dildo infused with a billion ruby red sparkles and wish our wallets could afford it. We purchase an item and if you seem like you might “get it”, we admit that we’re only buying it to burn it later For Science. Your customer overhears us in our excited babbling about vibrators and asks our opinion on deciding between a set of Palmpower attachments and at least one of us (ahem) Has Feelings and strongly advises for & against. We stand at your lube station and discuss ingredients and our various sensitivities. We are happy to see our favorite brands on your shelves, and are so over A Certain Brand that we don’t even notice its absence on your shelves until days later. We turn things on, not hiding our reactions. We confirm that a vibrator is shit and confirm that we might really need to review others.

We are not your average customer.  Hopefully we’re fun?

We also might walk into Condom Kingdom and do a very good Grumpy Cat impression at the entire section of Basix (toxic) dildos, which are slightly offset by silicone brands on the other side of the row. But we’ll still feel the need to escape quickly and leave the kitsch behind.

I wish we could have made it to other cool sex toy shops but by 4:30 I was in extreme pain from the walking and the standing. My body did not cooperate and just simply failed me, and failed me hard. It took days to recuperate – but honestly it was worth it to have 24 hours with some blogger pals – Sarah, Sugarcunt, Caitlin and Rose, as well as the amazing Sarah from Smitten Kitten. You can see more tweets here about our weekend, if you wish.

Satisfyer Pro 2 Update

True to their word, the company behind the Satisfyer did revamp their Pro 2. This new model has the word Satisfyer in script on the handle, has a few levels of much more subtle-feeling “pulsations”, and is indeed a lot more quiet on those lower levels. But they stated that the new Pro 2 would be “90% more quiet” – sure, on the lower few levels. Once you’re up in the upper levels (5-11) which match the original Pro 2, the noise level is identical. So overall the Satisfyer Pro 2 is still noisy, because you still cannot simply avoid those super-intense upper levels due to their lack of up and down buttons (unless you never go past the first few levels and never need to back off the intensity during use, or, if you do, you turn it off completely and start over). They kinda pulled a fast one on us with that “90% more quiet” claim, because it’s really only partially true.

Many has asked me how they will know if they’re buying the new or old model of the Pro 2: unless the retailer you buy from has updated the photos recently and notes in their information copy that it is the new version, you’ll have to ask. I can tell you that if you buy it from Shevibe (and you should), you’ll definitely get the updated Pro 2.

I will admit though that their lower levels of intensity now feel a lot more like the Womanizer, and are much more comfortable to start out with.  I’ve had a lot of requests for information on the new Womanizer Pro40 and I hope to review that in the coming weeks. Do I like the Satisfyer Pro 2 more now that it has those more-subtle less-intense levels added in? I do. And the price is hard to beat, at $59.99. I still have extreme Feelings about how they yoinked the air-pulsation technology from Womanizer but until now the Womanizer has been a full $100 more. Even with the lower-priced Pro40, at $99, Womanizer is more expensive.

Perfect Fit Silaskin

So yes, when I was in Philly last weekend I bought the Buck Off to burn. Now, I don’t want y’all to think I’m picking on the Buck Off – it just happened to be there and be the only Perfect Fit item the store carried. If they’d carried something else from that brand, I’d have picked it. But here we are, and I think I’d like to see if we can raise funds for silicone testing.  The first lab I used (same lab that BadVibes.org used) has refused to respond to me the last few times, so I’ve found another lab. But testing is expensive. Just an FTIR test is $475 (other, more in-depth options are thousands of dollars and well out of our range).  You may be wondering why I care – it’s in part because they list “Silicone” first when they talk about their proprietary blend on the packaging, and for some online stores this might mean that lazy employees will pick one material or the other when they have to check off attributes to load an item onto their website store and they’ll pick the first thing listed: silicone. This blend might give unsuspecting consumers a false sense of security and safety. The company doesn’t get into the details of porosity when they talk about their material. I also just simply have deep reservations that a TPR and silicone blend can be done. With this Silaskin getting attention because of the Buck Off, I had a renewed curiosity and again reached out to trusted industry contacts. A manufacturer (who makes both TPR and silicone products) asked around their R&D department for me and found that the vast majority of their material engineers said that TPR and silicone couldn’t be blended; a couple conceded that maybe a company could add a little silicone powder, but that that would take a lot of pricey research & development, and to what end?

Perfect Fit has responded to one direct request for information with a response that tries to minimize porosity, insinuate that silicone is over-rated, and more. 

If you’re interested in getting a lab analysis of this “Silaskin” and can contribute to the funds, get in touch with me via email, my contact form, or social media. If I can raise enough funds then I will get it done, but I can’t afford to even pay half at this point.



 Posted by at 6:37 pm
Sep 232016

shevibe_blog_squad_woodhullIt’s been (way) more than a month now since Sex Blogger Christmas aka Woodhull’s Sexual Freedom Summit. I expected to write about this sooner but got hit hard with a cold-turned-infection the day I was driving home from the Summit; I missed a lot of work, have spent weeks exhausted and have had a lot of brain fog. The brain fog has clouded a lot of my memories, making writing about the weekend pretty difficult. I realized at one point during writing this (with its 14 edits) that I’ve been procrastinating on publishing this post because I’ve been afraid – afraid that it’s not good enough, that it’s missing important things, that I can’t do justice to my gratitude for Shevibe (my sponsor), Tantus, and Ricci Levy and the entire Woodhull Board. Because really, nothing short of a ticker tape parade would do justice to their greatness.

The Sessions

I absolutely plan to write up a separate post dedicated to what I learned during the Sex & Depression + Side Effects May Vary sessions. I don’t feel like there was enough for me to write about from Likes and Liberations, and #SFSMedia may not appeal to some of you – but if you are running the social media for your company, then you absolutely need to know what was said in that session. So many companies that want to work with me have atrocious social media accounts – some are so offensive they start a tidal wave of backlash, some are boring, some are dangerous and predatory. I do plan to write a post just dedicated to what was discussed in the #SFSMedia session.

There were sessions I missed, and it kills me to have missed them. I wanted to learn from Sarah Mueller again and understand more about bacterial vaginosis. I wanted to be inspired and educated about the intricacies of consent, but something happened. Both of those sessions were first thing Saturday morning and I slept in due to a few nights of getting less sleep than I need. I read these few tweets from the session on consent and promptly lost my shit. The tears wouldn’t stop flowing so I finally collected myself slightly and headed off to the Tantus Blogger Lounge to get some hugs and eventually put on my makeup when the tears dried up. The fact that there were so many sessions I missed (in part due to their early hour or happening at the same time as another session or my lack of spoons) that I made the suggestion that Woodhull consider selling audio recordings of the sessions next year, somehow. The #blogsquad is going to work on making this happen, and sponsoring it. Tweets are amazing but they don’t tell the whole story. There are little points missed in between sound bites – plus when you’re the one live-tweeting with such skill you too may miss something.

Group Hangs

Thursday night’s group events didn’t work out for me entirely; they felt a little too loud or contained too many people I didn’t know. I ended up sitting them out for the most part. I was sad to have missed Crista’s thing at Bedpost Confessions but the popularity of that event led to a crowded room of people. There was a number of bloggers congregating in a circle in the parking lot, because reasons – Due to the collective anxieties of the group, I basically spent the weekend being some sort of fairy-godmother-Nancy-Botwin person. I remember showing Sugarcunt and….. I forget who else (ugh) the Rockbox Finger that evening and having to preface it with “Don’t. Scream.” before I handed it over. I went to bed, but not before catching a few Magikarp from my room!

Friday night’s Blogger PJ Party was amazing (and loud). Shevibe really did a fantastic job and we had so much fun. There were a few poetry readings from people braver than I; there were tunes playing that I didn’t really hear; and frequent pilgrimages to the parking lot (door! side door!). I have a photo I’ll treasure from the end of the night of a not-very-sober group hug between myself, Sandra (SheVibe), Metis (Tantus) and Ruby (Doxy), which I would love to share (but can’t).  And hey we got a bunch of cool stuff from the party sponsors! Tantus, Doxy, Fun Factory and Sliquid, to name a few. This isn’t to brag – I want to share! There were a number of things that I already have one of and I think one of you should have it instead. How can you win it? Simple: Donate to Woodhull. I’ll have more details about this at the end of the post.

Saturday night was the fancy party and even though I bought a dress, I didn’t have the spoons to get fancy and femme and attend a loud group gathering so first, Epiphora, Sugarcunt, April and I had some dinner. Then I remembered this alcove dining area in the “retreat wing” of the hotel that had large, round tables and we took over with the plan of snacks and card games. The problem was we quickly discovered we couldn’t learn a new game when we weren’t sober (and we were definitely not). It was a fun attempt though and soon other bloggers in their fancy garb came from one party to another and in short order we had an official Cackle of bloggers spread out over a few tables. And hey, no noise complaints this year! Score! There exists a group photo of most of us from Saturday night that I love, but next year we need to get a proper photo of the entire blogsquad, all together.

The Best People on Earth

I have so many little and big memories of moments with the #blogsquad. For example, Thursday, Sarah helped me navigate the deceptively short (and enormously frustrating) drive from the hotel to Union Station to fetch Artemesia and Caitlin. I couldn’t have made the drive without the collective help of everyone and their maps because my GPS is a sadist. I will do my best to avoid driving in the heart of DC ever again, though. Anxious little bunnies just need to avoid gridlocked traffic with directions that include the phrase “From the right-most lane, make a left turn” and a train station without a goddamn pick-up lane/parking area to wait in.

Once again, the Tantus Blogger Lounge saved me. I crashed there for a bit on Thursday while I waited for a room to be ready; I hid there on Saturday morning to recover from a large case of The Feels brought on by reading tweets from #sfsconsent. There were amazingly geeky conversations there with Lorax and Mary as we talked about how best to swab porous dildos to detect bacteria or how to soothe burning genitals. There were discussions galore in that blogger lounge, and there were stories of horrific DIY sex toys. There were hugs and coffee and the Best Fucking Chocolate delivered to me. I left out my Jar of Horrors so that it could educate people all weekend. And yes, at one point I opened it up and made people poke it with a stick. I’m not joking. The orange-y bits which used to be cock extenders (and therefore pretty soft and pliable, right?) are now rock solid. All of the plasticizers have “leaked” out into the jar. Next year I’ll have to tie an information tag around it so that there’s a bit of a “guided tour” of important info readily available.

I reveled in Girl on the Net‘s accent (we Americans are often easily impressed with accents, but she’s lovely to listen to – and talk with!); I finally met Polly who I’ve “known” for about 8 years online. Bex was the first face I saw, and my first of many hugs that weekend.  I soon met others I have only known online like Rebecca and Sammi, April, Taylor, Suz, Sarah and Sugarcunt – who all lived up to all my expectations (and then some). After many Facebook moments, I got to meet Ashley. I briefly chatted with Avery, had a little time with JoEllen, got in some amazing low-key chats with Epiphora, Bex, Girly Juice, Mandi, Rose and more. A bunch of us bloggers descended en masse to the hotel Dildo Factory as Kenton was creating a few things (and I even bought a Rainbow dildo!) after we’d spent more time fawning over Lunabelle‘s collection. I missed Penny, Lena and Reenie, though, who I spent a lot of time with last year. I met the lovely Rizzo from Tantus, and got to hang out and chat with Sandra, Thor, and Alex of SheVibe – they are a joy to be around and breakfast with them and Piph on Sunday morning was such a perfect cap to the weekend. I believe there are a few other bloggers who attended but an introduction/path-crossing didn’t happen.

Sunday, as many people were leaving, we all casually gathered (loitered) in the hotel lobby. This slow seeing-off helped me mitigate the worst of con-drop. We had fun; there were more hugs, so much conversation, and some fun pics. Sunday was really the perfect way to end the weekend.

I have Feels about these people. My people. Spending time with them, and being in the environment of a conference created with love and joy (a conference that celebrates everyone, including bloggers), was such a gift. I may not remember every conversation in detail anymore (thanks, sickness-brain-fog) but I remember laughter. Hugs. I felt heard, appreciated, respected. I may still have felt awkward, unsure and weird 1 at times but it all evened out.  I might be a lot older than most of these people but I still feel like many things in my life had to happen this way to find these people, to be changed for the better by these people and this community has changed me. The blogsquad is a rock for me; collectively they are my soulmate and I don’t know what I’d do without them. I’m a better person for knowing them.

Dear friends: If you have a memory that in any way involves  me from that weekend, please comment and share. It may help jiggle my brain fog. I’m writing this post in part to help me with my memory issues (which is why I write many things, tbh).

Next Year, Though…

My wish for SFS17 though is to fly a little less “seat of the pants” and plan a little more. A lot of us were able to talk in the week after Woodhull about our social experiences, others social experiences, anxieties, issues and more and it’s basically going to be even better next year. We’re going to get better about planning things for ourselves in groups and doing better at being inclusive with each other and those who are newer to Woodhull and the #blogsquad.

I want more small-group time to chat with people. I want to spread my time out so that I don’t leave and think “ugh I didn’t get enough time to REALLY connect more with that person!”, but also because I just personally do better in smaller groups vs 15 + people all at once.

If you are a blogger, or educator, or sex toy shop owner then you need to find your way to Summit 2017. If you are a company/manufacturer/etc looking to support one of the best sexuality conferences in the US, then you need to support Woodhull – both the yearly Summit and the Alliance. If you’re a sex toy company and want to connect with a ton of bloggers all at once, this is the conference to attend.  Supporting this conference means you’re supporting an essential non-profit that fights for our sexual freedom.

Thank Yous and Thank YOU

My biggest thanks and endless gratitude goes to Shevibe – for being the best sex toy shop I’ve ever worked with; for being amazing people; for being supporters of the crusaders and bloggers; for sponsoring my ass. Without them, I would be lost. My thanks to Metis and Tantus for the blogger lounge (which needs to be bigger next year!!). I have such gratitude to Crista for her hard work behind the scenes, and Mandi. And all the volunteers who ran around with seemingly endless energy to make this conference the best it can be.

And a ginormous thanks to Ricci and the Board for creating the best sexuality conference, where everyone is taken care of, honored, celebrated and no stone is left unturned. In 2014, after some unpleasant events, I wished for a true home for the bloggers – a conference to bring us together, not push us apart. A conference to welcome us, and foster true community. Ricci Levy made that happen in 2015.  Just like last year, the bloggers were thanked and treated with kindness and appreciation. For a number of us, this sort of treatment is still a bit alien (which is sad) but I feel safe in saying that for many of us, our heart is with Woodhull, firmly. The Summit is our superhero home base; it is where we gather to recharge ourselves and each other. Last year there were about a dozen of us attending and this year there was at least 2 dozen – safe to say this is the biggest gathering of bloggers in one space, ever. The Woodhull Summit – Ricci, the Board, the sessions, the volunteers all feed our souls in a way we’ve never experienced.  It really is like Blogger Christmas – our reunion with part of our chosen family. I will forever be grateful to those who make this happen for me.

~      ~       ~       ~

woodhullraffleAnd now, a little more about this Swag Bag package for ya. I have to thank all of my readers because without you reading and buying things and following me I wouldn’t have a sponsor and I wouldn’t get to go to Woodhull’s Sexual Freedom Summit. Since you couldn’t go, the next best thing is reading about the things all us bloggers have learned, and getting some cool swag for yourself. Fun fact: I asked on FB if anybody else had a few items to throw in; Crista is now sending me a couple more items and Njoy, well….they took this from a mishmash bag o’ swag to a big grand prize.

You’ll get: A copy of the #NSFW coloring book from Shevibe, curated by Elle Chase. I have one, so you get my second copy! Bottles from Sliquid of their new coconut-and-plant-based oil lube, and their O Gel, plus a few packets of H20. A Mad Toto blindfold mask. A metal Doxy keychain! A literal dozen Tantus “tinies” and a bunch of Tantus stickers; a Shevibe logo sticker and Shevibe condoms. There’s also a Fun Factory logo pin and courtesy of me you’ll get a vulva/vagina pin and testicle pin from I Heart Guts and a couple of my Shevibe-designed sticker business cards. And not pictured, because it’s all en route to me, is Njoy swag. A small Pure Plug …. and an Eleven. Yep, an Eleven. Since the Eleven is such a big deal (and I know that people will want it who either went to Woodhull themselves or just don’t care about the swag bag stuff), it will be a separate raffle. The Pure Plug will be included with the Swag Bag.

How to be entered to win this pack? Donate $5 to Woodhull Sexual Freedom Summit – every $5 you donate is a “raffle ticket” – plus there’re ticket bundles – using rallyup. The money goes directly to Woodhull2, not me. It’s open to everyone; I’d thought about limiting due to shipping costs that I have to pay, but fuck it. Anybody in the world can enter and I’ll happily pay shipping. You can buy a few tickets for each raffle, if you’re interested in both, and 1 winner for each prize pack will be chosen.

click here to enter the raffle (or just donate)

  1. despite attempts to rectify that with various helpful things like Girl Scout Cookies, Snow Dawg, and Blue Dream
  2. except for a teeny per donation fee of 5% which goes to rallyup
 Posted by at 2:49 pm
Sep 182016

We-Vibe Nova I side-eyed the We-Vibe Nova pretty hard when it came out, tbh. There’s a few sex toy styles that I roll my eyes at and reserve great skepticism for – shitty until proven otherwise: the “Rabbit” (or dual stimulator) and basically any remote-controlled vibrator. Both are usually expensive, with affordable options nearly always ending in deep disappointment. Both must meet a laundry list of requirements to be worthy of collecting, and most won’t meet your requirements. Most will merely sit in a drawer as an occasional reminder of that time you had high hopes. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve heard from someone who it using only one part of their rabbit vibe. It’s maybe all they’ve got, or that one part is better than the few other things they have – but if you’re using only one part of a dual-stimulation sex toy….what’s the point? I recommend very, very few of both styles so today I’m pretty pleased to tell you that I’ve found one that I enjoy almost as much as my current favorite.

The List

For a rabbit/dual-stim vibe to work for a person it must meet these requirements (the specifics of which vary for each person):

  1. The vibrations in both “arms” need to meet your requirements in intensity and type (buzzy or rumbly)
  2. The clitoral arm needs to sit where you prefer on/near your clitoris – to the side, nudging up from below, directly above, hugging both sides, etc.
  3. The clitoral arm needs to provide the correct amount of pressure
  4. The internal arm needs to be the right length AND width
  5. The internal arm needs to be curved to meet your g-spot or a-spot (or prostate, because dual-stim vibes can be used for that, too)
  6. The handle needs to be easy to hold with buttons that are easy to use without looking at them
  7. It should probably not sound like a kitchen appliance
  8. It should be made of silicone
  9. And if we’re getting into wishes and dreams territory, it should not be a budget-buster

Can you see why I’m super reluctant to recommend a rabbit vibrator, even though it’s one of the most asked-for types of sex toys? I have reviewed 14 dual-stimulation sex toys and have tried out at least 10 others. Out of those ~ 25 specimens two of them were close and okay for me, and two are really awesome for me – a few of the others aren’t terrible and might be good for others (just not me). We-Vibe Nova surprised me and is something I’ll probably recommend now if someone’s budget can tolerate it and they really, really want a dual-stimulation rabbit vibrator.

Why I Like the We-Vibe Nova

Herein lies the problem with me liking such a finicky breed of sex toys – I could go on about why I really like the We-Vibe Nova but this testimonial doesn’t mean it’s the right vibrator for you. Not everyone who has reviewed it likes it. I can’t promise you it will work for you. Of course, I can’t really promise you that any sex toy I love will work for you but most of them are a little easier to recommend.

We-Vibe Nova vs L'amourose DeniaTo understand why I like the We-Vibe Nova, I need to tell you a bit about other rabbit vibes I have. I once had a love-hate relationship with the Jopen VR6; the internal arm was powerful and rumbly as fuck but the external arm was weak, buzzy and didn’t quite hit my clitoris right. I once thought that the Lelo Ina 2 was pretty good but again, the clitoral arm was meh. Then came the Denia which showed me what I was really needing – a greater range of flexibility than most dual-stimulation vibrators can provide. It also helped that the Denia had amazing, rumbling and powerful vibrations all around and a base that I loved.

So while the We-Vibe Nova lacks the flex-y shift-y movement that the internal arm of the Denia has, it makes up for it (for me) with a pretty unique design. One downfall of the rabbit vibe has often been that you can’t thrust with it or the clitoral arm will lose contact with your clitoris. I need constant contact and the clitoral arm of the We-Vibe Nova is extra long but curls up to stay in place. Ok – Stick out your index finger; no, seriously. Like you’re doing that “come here” motion. You see how your finger curls up? That’s what the clitoral arm on the We-Vibe Nova does. You really need to check out the video here to fully get what I mean, but it really does maintain constant contact for me. The clitoral arm is rumbly and powerful – something we nearly never see with rabbit vibes. The internal arm is moderately powerful and somewhere in between buzzy and rumbly.  On its own the internal arm doesn’t hold a candle to the Rave (or to the internal arm of the Denia) which has me a bit disappointed.

It’s also waterproof, with a great magnetic charger – it stays where it needs to for charging and doesn’t get bumped off easily.

There Has to Be Cons…

Here’s my biggest problem: The app feels more necessary than I’d like. I hadn’t used the Nova in a few months so when I turned it on I thought I’d imagined my previous very enjoyable sessions with it. The internal arm was weak and under-powered. The external arm wasn’t as great as I remembered. Did it need a good charging? Nope, that didn’t fix it. Then I connected the We-Vibe Nova to the app and suddenly, all was right in the world. I cranked both sides up to full power and was assured that I hadn’t just had a wonderful dream. I don’t know why this happened; I don’t recall ever connecting the Nova to the app before which would be (I think) the only reason why it would be giving me problems. Otherwise though I don’t really give a crap about the app. I don’t fancy having someone else sit there and control the vibrations for me (but you might), whether they’re in the same room or in another country. I also would really rather not use the app as a remote control for the vibrator. However, even though my phone’s screen times out quickly and requires my thumbprint and the phone ends up covered in vag fluid and lube, it’s still probably a little easier than using the buttons. You see, the handle, when I’m holding it in use, curves slightly away from me. It curves like that right where the buttons are, so it makes it harder for me to change the intensity during use just using the buttons.

For me personally the shaft could be a little shorter, and maybe a little thicker at the head. But because I can thrust with it, I’m able to overlook the shaft length. Also, like with other rabbit vibrators that combine 2 rumbling, powerful motors there can be dissonance sometimes which can feel like a rapid pulsating. I don’t experience that frequently, but it may bother some.

A Bit of Comparison

Let’s briefly talk specs here, and compare. The We-Vibe Nova is thinner than the L’amourose Denia at the widest point of the internal arm. I generally find that the Denia is a better match for my g-spot. I usually don’t measure like this but the Nova is 4.2″ circumference and the Denia is 4.6″ circumference which works out to mean that the Nova is about 1.33″ wide and the Denia is 1.46″ wide. Not a big difference but as you can see from the photo above the Nova is more slender overall than the Denia.  The internal arm of the Denia has the most strength and rumble, whereas the external arm of the Nova has the most strength and rumble. I realize though that many people don’t need the heavy-duty strength of the Tango so even though the external arm doesn’t quite meet the intensity of the Tango (at least on Tango’s higher speeds) it’s still high-powered enough that many will love it.

~       ~      ~      ~      ~

All in all I’m probably more likely to recommend the L’amourose Denia over the Nova but I’m even more likely to recommend one of my few top favorite clitoral toys in conjunction with one of my favorite dildos or g-spot vibes because this way it’s easier to come up with a combination that suits your body. Of course, this method actually could be more expensive than the Nova or even the Denia (which are $149 and $169, respectively). Yes, even though I personally really enjoy the We-Vibe Nova I’m still reluctant to recommend it because it’s one vibrator doing one thing and replacing two vibrators (both of which could potentially work well on different body parts and in a larger variety of couples-centric situations). If you already own multiple vibrators and really want a twofer for the days you can’t be arsed to hold two sex toys – go for it. If you’re trying to find The One To Rule The Whole Vulva because you can’t buy 8 sex toys? Oye I am physically manifesting my wishy-washy attitude as I think about that sentence; sorry you can’t see it. DON’T MAKE ME CHOOSE FOR YOU.


I was given the We-Vibe Nova in exchange for an honest review by the wonderful folks at We-Vibe. You can buy your We-Vibe Nova (or Tango, or Touch, or Rave) at the best sex toy shop on the planet – Shevibe.com.

 Posted by at 8:27 pm
Sep 082016

I Gave Up Vibrators for 4 weeks (just to see what would happen)Despite this being 2016; despite the enormity of the sex toy industry; despite the amount of tech, pomp and circumstance that is being shoved into all manner of vibrators… for many people, vibrators are “naughty”. They’re inferior to “natural ways”. They offend teh menz who think that, thanks to porn, people with vaginas can come easily, often, and loudly with just some vigorous thrusting of objects into the vagina. Some people can. I envy them! Many can’t, and for that we have the work of many many scientific things and people and polls to thank: It’s a much-trotted out fact that most people with a vagina actually need clitoral stimulation in order to orgasm.

My sexual history pre-vibrators is rocky. I found vibrators in 2005. I probably found my clitoris roundabout oh…..2000? 1 But I didn’t know what to really do with it. I knew that things felt nice, usually, but then it would stop feeling nice and I’d be left hanging….So when I found vibrators, and found one that actually brought me to orgasm – not as efficiently as maybe I would have liked, but finally an orgasm I FELT and KNEW what was happening and could say YES I CAME! – it was a change that marked a turning point for me. I’d not often faked feeling intense pleasure from sex, but I faked the climax for a long time because well, enough is enough at some point. It did take me awhile though to start incorporating a vibrator into my partnered sex life. Flings and one-timers? Nah. They never saw the vibrators. But when I did bring it into my committed partnered sex life, my husband embraced it thoroughly.

We adapted our sex to fit around vibrators, instead of expecting to find a vibrator that seamlessly fit into how we have sex. But that’s a rant/discussion for another post….

So. I’ve known for quite some time now that instead of vibrators “ruining” me for non-vibrator playtime, they actually made manual orgasms easier. Of course, when you’re talking about “easier” being it moves from a 0.5 to a 3 on a scale of 0-10….it’s relative. But still, I learned a lot about my vulva and clitoris thanks to vibrators. I learned about my spot, and that when I can repeatedly ping that spot correctly, over and over, I don’t need extreme power. I learned that I dislike broad vibrators, and buzzy vibrators. I learned that my impossible-to-please clitoris o’steele was maybe just finicky and a bit Goldilocks. But could it be “reformed”?

I Sent My Clitoris to Reform School

I took advantage of my time away at Woodhull and then my weeks-long illness2 to put this to the test. I left everything alone, untouched, for 3 weeks. Then I tried masturbating “manually” over the next week; I even tried three times, thinking there could still be outside factors. It simply felt the same as it’s always felt – decent, but the stars weren’t aligned and my wrist wasn’t up for a 40 minute session so there was no orgasm. There may not have been even with 40 minutes to spare (I gave it 20 – what can I say, my attention span is shit).

When I did use a vibrator again I didn’t even need less – at least not the first time. I didn’t magically become more sensitive. I still needed a higher intensity setting and about 10 minutes. The second time (2 days later) I did need less intensity, but who knows why. Even when I’m using vibrators daily sometimes I can come in minutes, and from a lower intensity setting. Some days I need more time, more intensity. It’s just the way it is, and depriving MY body isn’t going to change this. And I don’t want to.

Might as Well Face it You’re Addicted to…

No. I don’t buy into the “vibrator addiction” rhetoric thrown about by people who feel threatened by vibrators. In talking with other bloggers about this post a number of them have said that before vibrators, they had few problems getting off – and it’s still the same after vibrators. They don’t need to take a break.

Many people are under the incorrect assumption that vibrators will desensitize you, numb you, so that you keep needing more and more and more. SOME vibrators can temporarily numb you – like the Magic Wand Original. It’s super powerful and kinda buzzy. You only need to take a little break (a few hours) and you’re back to normal. But that’s a topic I’ve written about before because I kept getting a lot of hits from the search term “are vibrators dangerous” 3. A number of sex ed professionals have agreed that vibrators are not a bad thing – in fact they’re great because guess who just went from anorgasmic to gleefully enjoying solo and partnered sex? You did, my friend.

And a survey has been done, by Debby Herbenick, who found (among other facts): “Most women (71.5 percent) reported having never experienced any side effects associated with vibrator use. Those side effects that were reported were typically rare and of a short duration.”

Embracing My Vibrators

My experience isn’t your experience. Or maybe it is. Maybe some will hold fast to their “natural ways are better” viewpoint and insist I didn’t abstain from vibrators for long enough. But didn’t I already in my life? Didn’t I already spend years without a vibrator and then years without a decent vibrator to “prove” my need? Why the fuck do I need to prove my need? Why is this a thing? Why is needing vibrators a bad thing? Can’t I just fucking orgasm the way I want to, the way I feel I need to without someone telling me I’m “doing it wrong”?

If you feel “broken” because you need a vibrator to orgasm, I see you. I felt that way for quite some time myself. I see it as kind of equal to refusing to wear glasses because hey, you were born with this bad vision! Embrace it! Rawr! I’m just curious – Do you also wash your clothes on a scrub-board and hang them outside to dry? Do you use the broom and dustpan in place of a vacuum? I get it. Society (porn…doctors?) hasn’t quite embraced it all just yet. Ever is the quest to find a vibrator that can be used during sex that remains invisible, silent and requires no hands because let’s not talk about that, we don’t talk about these things, ignore the pink elephant. Let’s sweep it under the rug. OR! Now here’s a novel idea: We can all accept that every body is different and you know – a little helping hand is great.

But What About ME?

If you’re the partner of a person who needs a vibrator, you’ve probably had a whine-fest at some point about how their need of a vibrator makes you feel less than. Less needed. Like a failure. Because, after all, you’re supposed to be your partner’s everything, amirite? I mean you do provide them with every single possible other thing they need in life, 24/7.

Seriously though, what’s the difference between supplying the pleasure that results in orgasm from your tongue/fingers/penis and a vibrator? No, you can’t vibrate. You’re right. You can’t do that. So. Fucking. What. Would you rather effectively lock up your partner? Or get to watch as they have an intense orgasm? You can participate. There’s plenty you can do that is invaluable. You can be an extra set of hands and spread the pleasure around; nipples, g-spot, neck, lips, etc. You get the idea. You are just as much as active part of the whole thing as you were before but with the added bonus of watching something amazing. An orgasm from a vibrator is a lot better to watch/hear than a faked orgasm.

So jealous cis men, tell me this: would you turn down partnered sex for your own hand or even a sex toy of your own?

Just sayin.

~ ~ ~ ~

If you have personally found that your body prefers not to use vibrators, great. Good for you. You’ve found what works best for you, and hey congratulations on not needing expensive things to orgasm. But if you do need these marvels of technology? Well hallelujah, you’ve got options. You’ve got options coming out your ears. And if my body’s requirements don’t meet yours, I’m sure there’s a blogger out there who is your vulva-twin.

  1. For reference, I’m nearing 40
  2. it’s impossible for me to give a fuck about masturbation when I’m in pain, exhausted, and then sick as hell
  3. This is a rant we’ve all probably had before, but Piph had a great one from a few years ago
 Posted by at 7:50 pm
Jul 032016

Sandra-Bruce-600x600-Speaker-QuotesIn exactly 1 month I will be heading to Woodhull’s 7th Annual Sexual Freedom Summit, or #SFS16, courtesy of my amazing sponsor, Shevibe.com.

The Sexual Freedom Summit is more than just a place for the blogsquad to converge upon and roam the halls like a bad-ass gang from some progressive musical – it’s a place where we also learn a lot and bring that education to you readers. Take a look at the schedule of sessions and please comment if something jumps out at you that you’d like to read more about. I may only live-tweet it, but I also may blog about it.

The first thing I KNOW I’m doing is JoEllen’s Sex Geek Salon. And of course on Friday night I’ll be at the Blogsquad PJ Party.

The session I KNOW I’m attending is “Navigating Social Media Practices for Adult Businesses”, not because I’m planning on becoming a business but because one of my amazing sponsors is on the panel, Ms Sandra Bruce, and also Metis and blogger extraordinaire, JoEllen. It’s a topic I’m going to tweet the fuck out of, and it’s a topic I hope the companies who follow me will pay attention to. From how Blush Novelties handled blogger backlash about them copying a Tantus & Shevibe design to the problematic beached whale that we know as Lelo, to simply the clueless newbie companies who ask big-name bloggers to promote their sales for free or retweet our review tweets by quoting and adding in a link to THEIR store…..there’s a lot of education that needs to get out there.

I’m considering attending the following, and I’d like input from my readers – which of these would you most like to hear about? I know my brain;I can’t cram in a ton of sessions, I have to pick and choose maybe 4 or 5 total.

Social Justice in Sexual Health Research and Care: A Case Study in Bacterial Vaginosis

Sexuality Education Through a Social Justice Lens

Facing the Monster Under the Bed: Continuing the Conversation about Sex and Depression

Side Effects May Vary

Sex, Laws and Video: Legal Updates from Woodhull’s Free Speech Advocates

The Whore Singularity: If everyone’s naked on the Internet, is no one naked on the Internet?

I can’t even put into words right now how much I’m looking forward #SFS16, how much I need this time with like-minded people. Daily life, when your co-workers and family members are much more conservative than you, wears on a person after awhile. Spending 4 day surrounded by diverse, smart, like-minded people is so amazing.


p.s. a big huge extra-special thank you shout-out to SheVibe for sponsoring me to attend for a second year in a row. I wouldn’t be able to attend without their support, and that they think so highly of me as to spend money on my attendance means so much to me. Make sure you’re following them on Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr and Instagram for amazing SheVibe art and more. 

p.p.s. a special thanks to Crystal Delights, Holistic Wisdom, and Ignite Pleasure Products for agreeing to sponsor Caitlin, Sarah and Sugarcunt, ensuring that the #blogsquad learns and grows in rank, that these sex educators & bloggers get the chance to learn and spend a weekend with peers and mentors.

 Posted by at 12:21 pm
Jun 222016

Last week, the 15th, was technically my blog anniversary but I felt that bitching about Lelo and Charlie Sheen took some priority.

I started out this calendar year doing things different. I tried to vow to write something every week. Every month I’m giving away gift cards to my RSS subscribers. I’ve mostly posted every week, although sometimes I’ve missed. When I started 2016 out I really thought that my 8th year would be a bigger deal to me, that I would know for sure where I stand.  I wrote on my 5-year blog anniversary that it was my 800th post; I checked in to see where I was at for year 8 and was confused at first to see I was only at 837 posts.

But then I looked at the private posts section and found 140-some posts that I’d taken away – the trying-too-hard “sexy” photos, the erotica that was written mostly for someone else. At the time I hid those posts I was starting to divulge the blog to a few people in real life and I didn’t want them to see the photos or read those words. I also thought I couldn’t be taken as seriously if I had those posts up. Seriously by who? I don’t know anymore. But it doesn’t matter. The girl who wrote those words and posted those pictures doesn’t live here anymore. I’m a full-time dildo-burner and toy-critic, heavy in my “sex toy activism” and, yes, SJW posts. I’ll go ahead and claim that label. I don’t see why it’s a bad thing.

I found it interesting to look back at blog anniversary posts over the last few years. At year 3 I was deeply depressed after having moved to a new state the month prior. I didn’t expect the move to be bad, in fact, I’d looked forward to it. But the change and isolation was tough. Year 4 I just apparently ignored the blog anniversary, with nary a mention.  At 5 years I was dealing with some personal stuff and thought I was going to have to quit blogging. I was planning a slow fade-out but after 9 months the situation changed and my time freed up. My attitude changed. And my blog continued to change. Year 6? Big fucking change. I was lighter, I was happier, I was back. I was sure of myself, my blog and grateful. Year 7 I mused on the fact that all of my friends now are friends I have through blogging. You guys GET ME. I LOVE YOU, MAN.

It’s now officially 8 years. At least I’m not breaking tradition by forgoing a blog anniversary giveaway! I just don’t have time for the prep and the stress and the things one must do over the course of a big blow-out giveaway. I’ve opted for the kinder, gentler thing this year which is reward those who read me. Fear not, there’s a giveaway or 10 every month now in blogger land. They’ve become so commonplace! I could start an “In MY day” story but oh, you already know I’m an ole fogey so I don’t need to confirm that, now do I? If I make it to 10 years then I will do something major, I promise. But right now I’m getting used to working full time for the first time in 5 years (and in a job where I cannot be on social media and my blog all time, go figure) and it’s killing my scheduling and my writing! But hey, I’ve done some writing things this year that I’m a little proud of:

For now though, I am literally counting down the days until the Sexual Freedom Summit of 2016. It will be the Best Thing Of The Year.  AND I haven’t yet gone a whole month without a post, so that’s good. Year 8 is still lookin good. I don’t have plans for anything big and groundbreaking the remainder of the year so I will take suggestions!


We’ve come a long way, baby….

 Posted by at 9:02 pm