Jan 222016
 

BWE1One of my first erotica books was a Best Women’s Erotica of the Year. My local Barnes & Noble had two shelves for erotica books and BWE caught my eye immediately.  Back then, BWE had a year name in the title but apparently this caused book stores to send them back at the end of the year, thinking people wouldn’t buy past year’s books. I always wanted to find back editions because I liked the book so much. So Cleis Press now is starting over with Volume 1, and the lovely Rachel Kramer Bussel is editing (and contributing!). Rachel is a prolific writer of both erotica and editorial pieces. Her work spreads far and wide in print and Internet. If nothing else from this contest, let me introduce you to Rachel because you don’t want to miss out on her writing1.

I don’t really review books anymore because I lack the time and post scheduling resources, but I love Rachel so much that I couldn’t say no to introducing my readers to her and Best Women’s Erotica of the Year. I’ve had time to check out a few stories in the book and what I’ve had time to read has been *really good*. BWE Volume 1 has 22 very varied stories, including BDSM, heterosexual, lesbian and bisexual stories, stories featuring women with trans men, one sci-fi story and one historical story, several women in their forties and more. I’ve got an excerpt for you below from Rachel’s story, but if you visit the book’s website, you can find excerpts from 5 more stories!

I highly recommend this book! The stories I’ve read so far have focused on hetero, cis couples but I know from Rachel’s info that there is a little more diversity. She is aiming to have more work by and about trans women in the next volume (which is open for submissions!). I have such faith that you will love this book too that I want one of you to win one, and you have tons of ways to gather entries. You’ll notice a lot of people down there that can be followed on Twitter for entries – besides myself, Rachel and Cleis Press the rest all are authors who have stories in this book. If you’re a fan of erotica, please consider following these very talented people! One lucky US winner will get a paperback copy. You can find BWE Volume 1 on Amazon in the US, UK, and Canada.

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From Best Women’s Erotica of the Year, Volume 1, published by Cleis Press, edited by Rachel Kramer Bussel

Flying Solo

by Rachel Kramer Bussel

 

I’ve made sure my camera has plenty of battery left for this trip, because you’re not here to watch me. I wish you were, but life sometimes keeps us apart. You didn’t ask me to, but I want to send you photos of me naked, turned on, wet for you. Even though you’re not talking up a storm as you usually are when we travel, I feel you with me as I pass through security, and especially as I head to the gate and start casually, quietly, discreetly looking around, the way we did on our honeymoon. Has it really been four years? They’ve flown by.

I’ll never forget sitting with you and hearing you whisper, “Find someone to take back to our hotel room with us.” You didn’t specify if it should be a man or a woman, and although I’d never considered it before, the idea of being pressed between you and another man made me so excited I almost spilled the medium coffee I’d just purchased. You took it from my hand and blew through the small opening in the plastic top for me, raising your eyebrows. I giggled, then started looking. I reached for your hand for support; you squeezed it but then let me go. I fiddled with my wedding ring, twisting around the new gold band over and over, afraid I looked like a kid in a candy store.

You’d whispered to me again. “I’m just so madly in love with you, and I think this should be a new tradition; when we travel, we find someone to join us. Just for fun, no strings attached.” I’d spent the entire time before we boarded perusing every adult sitting around us, mentally undressing them, wondering who had piercings or tattoos, who was kinky, who was the best kisser. I pictured the tall man in a suit, speaking rapidly in Spanish on the phone, with his cock in your mouth. I pictured the short, curvy redhead with her head buried between my legs while you entered her from behind.

“Well?” you’d asked, as they started to board the plane.

“I can’t decide. And I certainly can’t go up to any of these people. What am I going to say? ‘I just got married and my husband wants to have a threesome?’” Yet even saying those unspeakable words made me wet, made my mind and heart race. I’d told you that I was bisexual after our third date, wanting to make sure you wouldn’t have that awful, frat-boy, “That’s hot!” reaction that even most seemingly sophisticated men busted out once I revealed I went both ways. You just nodded and let me tell you all about Simone, the gorgeous woman with the smoky voice and beautiful, curvy body I’d most recently bedded.

I’d fallen in love with you in part because you let me tell you anything, and in turn revealed some of your fantasies. We’d tried out many of them—bondage, strap-ons, hot wax. We’d talked about threesomes and orgies but in a fantasy way, until that trip. For whatever reason, you’d never mentioned wanting to be with another man, but I liked learning new things about you just when I thought I knew it all. “Let’s wait until we’re on the plane,” I’d said, and lucky me: my dream girl, the one whose face I kept returning to, was sitting next to me on the plane. You’d pretended to sleep while I made small talk with her, all the while working up the courage to say what I most wanted to. As it turned out, she’d been the one to whisper in my ear, “I wish I could be alone with you for an hour. I want to kiss you all over.”

I’d stared right back at her, barely hearing the screaming infant behind us, or the  blaring music from the woman’s headphones in front of us. I just saw her, Katia, her ripe, naturally pink lips, her jet-black hair, the tiny diamond glinting from her lightly freckled nose. When I reached up and traced her lips, you’d stirred, gently knocking my knee with yours.

 

  1.  Rachel Kramer Bussel (rachelkramerbussel.com) is an author, editor, event organizer and writing instructor. She’s edited over 60 anthologies, most recently Best Women’s Erotica of the Year, Volume 1, Dirty Dates; Erotic Fantasies for Couples and Come Again: Sex Toy Erotica. She’s the author of Sex & Cupcakes: A Juicy Collection of Essays and writes widely about sex, dating, books, pop culture, body image and feminism. Find her @raquelita on Twitter.
 Posted by at 12:06 pm
Jan 142016
 

Sex toy copycats

This is a think-piece that has been brewing for awhile, and it’s been sitting here brewing because I don’t really have answers. I’m just going to say right here and now that I’d like your opinions — reviewers, consumers, and store owners — on this matter.

There are three types of sex toy copycats in the sex toy world – one is a given and one feels like really shitty business practices – and the third? Flat-out counterfeiting which we see online in places like Amazon and Ebay and in shadier stores in large cities like we learned exist in NYC thanks to attending SHE NYC. The given: lower-cost sex toys that are merely “branded” and redesigned for various companies. Sometimes even different lines within the same brand. Some examples: Lovehoney’s “Cupid Smoothie” and then the line branded Annabelle Knight Oooooh! (the second of which is more expensive). Doc Johnson’s Black Magic bullet is the same as the Harmony bullet; Black Magic has a matte-finish PU coat and Harmony is shiny and slick, but Harmony has always been a little pricier.  Even seeing the same thing across different brands like basic vibrators – bullets, that curved egg-on-a-stick design, etc.

But then there are patent wars and companies directly copying other companies designs which is NOT a matter of the manufacturing plant’s “book of blank sex toys” that companies come put their name on. Examples here are the We-Vibe vs Lelo Tiani (which is more concept than design rip-off), the Split Dildo vs Funtoys G-Vibe, the Fun Factory Big Boss vs Funtoys GJack, and various Blush Novelties or Pleasureworks vs Tantus product. Or the Fairy Wands and BodyWand brand – they are very much identical but one is made very cheaply (Bodywand). Fun Factory, publicly, didn’t seem to care much that Funtoys totally ripped off their design, but I think they’re a big enough company that it doesn’t bother them. Smaller companies care. You know who else cares? The fans of the smaller companies.

Blush Novelties – Twitter Wars and Quiet Design Copies

The most recent design rip-off, done by Blush vs Tantus, caught the ire of bloggers on Twitter. Blush decided to fire back publicly – insulting and being nasty not just to Tantus and Metis, but to bloggers who defended Tantus. DUMB MOVE, BLUSH. I saved their tweets in case the social media manager gets fired in the morning.

BlushTantus BlushTantus2 BlushTwitter1BlushTwitter2BlushTwitter3

So yes, the tweets quickly disappeared. In DM’s to others, it is claimed that this person was a very new hire and has been fired. I personally call bullshit on this because what new hire would know all of this information OR be dumb/ballsy enough to behave in such a way? It would clearly be job suicide. I don’t actually believe for a moment that this was a new hire.  Bloggers are being told1 that we’re (bloggers and certain manufacturers alike2) spreading misinformation about their materials, insinuating that they’re safer than we think. The deleted tweet to Bex included in the screenshot shows that she talks about “gross porous materials” NOT saying it’s toxic, while the Blush person tries to roundabout claim they’re using non-porous TPE….um, no. Fuck you. But, this goes beyond the tweet claiming that some medical supply companies use TPR (which yes, there is a medically-safe TPE/TPR material but it’s expensive and I refuse to believe for a moment that a company making super-cheap TPE sex toys is using a medical-grade non-porous TPR). Really? We’re “manipulating the public”? Yes. That’s my goal here. Sure. Come ON Blush! Seriously? Seriously. Blush is also stating that “Tantus started it” with the design rip-offs, but no one but Blush seems to know what this is about. Really adult way to behave, Blush.

Yes, Blush, you do have plenty of silicone products, but you state ON YOUR OWN WEBSITE that you use materials like PVC and TPE/TPR that are porous. This is my big complaint, porosity. I will recommend porous TPR only when there’s literally no other option and with plenty of warnings and education – which is more than you do. No one is saying TPR is toxic but porosity fucking matters.  I would like to see a giant fucking apology from Blush on their bullshit statements, their treatment of people during that now-deleted Twitter exchange, and for them to remove their head from their ass. I will pepper my site with caveats about Blush as a company during the few times I recommend their silicone products; I will recommend other brands above theirs, even if they have the same product for cheaper. Ethics matters, Blush.

Update: Blush Novelties not only unfollowed but blocked nearly all bloggers on Twitter by Sunday afternoon.  Very adult.

Split Dildo vs Funtoys – Patent War Turned Blogger Harassment

The Split Dildo creator; he’s been fun. He cared so much about his design being copied that he started harassing bloggers who had reviewed the G-Vibe. He would email them and try commenting on their reviews with (empty) legal threats, telling the bloggers they had to remove their review of the G-Vibe because it was a patent violation. Whether or not this is true isn’t my concern and isn’t the concern of the bloggers; we are legally on the hook for our review from the companies who provided the toy to review, even if that company is Funtoys – we HAVE to keep those reviews up because we entered into an agreement. If the Split Dildo guy has an actual case then he should be talking to Funtoys, not us. After all, Standard Innovations didn’t come harass bloggers who had reviewed the Lelo Tiani; not even after it was banned for sale in the US for a few years.

If there is a valid patent that Funtoys has violated then I empathize with the Split Dildo dude but it still gives him zero right to harass the bloggers and threaten us. He not only has zero understanding of how this all works, but seems to not even understand what we say to him. A year later after I told him that he legally has no right to harass us and ask us to do anything with our review, he’s still at it and even telling some bloggers that he’ll go to court to get us to remove our posts. He feels our reviews somehow are discrediting his reputation. So what can happen here? At worst, the Split Dildo guy wins a case and it is decided legally that all reviews and written mentions of the Funtoys G-Vibe be removed. He still cannot be the one to come tell us this, it would have to be Funtoys or the retailers we received the product from. That’s it. He can’t do anything about the rest of our blog and reviews, because it’s not about us it’s about Funtoys.

I’ve reviewed both products and, aside from the Y-split, they are different in every way – size, silicone shore strength, flexibility….one’s a damn dildo, the other is a vibrator. But still. If his patent is valid, if his complaint is valid, then I empathize but if he’s just butthurt that Funtoys made it work and he didn’t? Not cool.

What Can We Do?

So that all said….what can we do as bloggers, and even retailers, when duplicates like this happen?  Do we boycott entire companies in cases like Funtoys, Blush Novelties or Pleasureworks? Or do we simply never recommend/carry the imposter sex toys? Blush Novelties is not a company I respect, but I can’t ignore that they do have some really decent silicone products that are affordable (and NOT rip-off designs) and many people need affordable silicone sex toys. I’m reluctant to boycott the entire company, but will always promote the better brand over them if I can.  At what point do we say “this is a company taking a product that is good and trying to make it better”? In many ways, as much as I truly hate to admit it, Lelo did the “couples’ PIV vibrator” thing better than We-Vibe. I’ve always liked the Tiani better. If the patent on a dual-motor c-shaped vibrator meant to be worn during PIV sex wasn’t a thing, would anybody be bothered much by it? I wasn’t.

I think we need to look at the bigger picture. See how companies react. When a company starts to react like Blush…when you look at their overall line and see so many problematic things…you have a decision to make. Do you hold the entire company accountable for someone who shouldn’t be anywhere near social media, behaving like an ass? I don’t know. I think that WE care as bloggers/retailers…but do consumers?

When faced with a patent war that is smaller that has not seen legal rulings, the answer is clear: We listen only to lawsuit rulings. We can change our reviews to say hey, I’m not sure who is at fault and who ripped off who, but here’s what I’ve been told. Let the customer make up their mind after hearing what we know and what we feel.

  1. There is alot of misinformation in this unregulated industry and marketing and social media titans use their clout to manipulate the public.” The current person in charge still maintains that everything this person spewed on Twitter that was deleted is true but was said in a wrong way.
  2. I felt it was really hypocritical of Tantus to get angry of copying us when they did it first.” They then had a tantrum about all of the people who were deriding Blush for their plethora of porous materials on Twitter, saying that we don’t know “the facts” only what “these manufacturers” tell them. Fuck you, Blush, I’ve done enough goddamn research outside of what one person tells me.
 Posted by at 10:25 pm
Dec 312015
 

The Best Sex Toys of 2015 (and the worst, too) - Featuring the L'amourose Denia and Prism V, Womanizer, Doxy Skittle, Tails and Portholes Nereid Hot Octopuss Pulse Solo, Fun Factory Patchy Paul G5, Doc Johnson Truskyn, We-Vibe Rave. THE BEST SEX TOYS OF 2015

I actually reviewed LESS this year than I thought I did. I blame it on buying a house and moving. I’ll do better in 2016. So I had to be picky about the things on my list and really only pick things I LOVED for the Best Sex Toys of 2015. Bonus this year: Video!1Things I pick up and use again, and again and mourn when they run out of charge. The L’amourose Denia is one of those, despite it being a dual-stimulation vibrator. I usually hate those! But the flex technology that some hate, I actually love. It made the thing so much more comfortable and fit me like a gorgeous, rumbly glove. The L’amourose Prism V is another one for the records. Powerful and rumbly (better than Mona 2 or Uma) and with a perfect head, the likes of which I haven’t seen since the Pure Wand. My g-spot likes the Prism V that much, y’all. Despite my lack of real review yet (does the video pre-review count? It’s gonna have to) the Womanizer is on the list. I agonized over it, but hey….it’s niiiice. With the Pure Wand in tandem it’s even nicer. My husband is all about that Hot Octopuss Pulse Solo, it’s probably like his version of L’amourose – powerful, rumbly and unique. Of course there’s the Doxy Skittle, that baffling little bastard, I like a LOT. Finally, this dildo from Tails and Portholes over at Etsy. Custom made to whatever color combos your heart desires, and it’s a soft silicone, too! Please, check her out. The only tough thing will be making a decision on your colors!

Best Thing That Wasn’t a Sex Toy:  Stealing this idea from JoEllenWoodhull’s Sexual Freedom Summit. I wrote a love letter, basically, so just read that if you hadn’t already. It’s hands-down the best sexuality conference I’ve ever been to. Kudos to Ricci Levy, The Board, and the Volunteers for making it so amazing. The little tidbits I am hearing about the 2016 Summit are making me so excited because it’s going to be even better, if that’s possible. Yes, my mention of the Summit in my video reduced me to tears. You didn’t think I was such a sap, did ya?

Honorable Mention: The Fun Factory Patchy Paul G5. I love the vibrations and feel that their G5 line is finally powerful enough for me to rave about. I appreciate the flexible body because not everyone likes a rigid vibrator.

Let’s Keep an Eye on These for Next Year: AKA More Testing Necessary: First up is the We-Vibe Rave. It arrived on my doorstep Wednesday and while I’m super impressed by the power and the weird, assymetrical  design (which works as they say it will) the motor on mine is possessed. It shuts off randomly and then turns back on randomly; it’s done this twice, so it’s not for lack of a good charge. I have a feeling I’m really going to enjoy it but I need a functioning model before I can really lay down any promises. Next up is the Doc Johnson TruSkyn. Really, the whole line, but I have this one. I’m impressed by the dual density for an affordable price and impressed by the mix of realistic + non-realistic and even dual density butt plugs! But since so many are (rightfully so) skeptical about Doc Johnson (we’re not gonna ease up on you, Doc, til you banish that fuckin sil-a-gel shit), I need to test it. And that includes cutting it in half after I’m done using it to report back on the in-use feel. Too many are worried that it’s not truly solid silicone, so we’ll see!

THE WORST SEX TOYS OF 2015

The Jimmyjane Hello Touch X is my least-hated on the list, but it’s still on my shit list. Their unsafe, lack of educational instructions on how to properly use e-stim pissed me off and to boot the vibrations and shocks weren’t even very nice to use. The Dame Eva failed 4 out of 4 vulvas in my trials, and really ended up pissing me off with their claims of a powerful motor and the ability to stay put during sex. The Lovehoney Rockbox Finger is an atrocity that would only make sense as an April Fool’s joke. Fucking shameful waste of resources and other people’s money. Another controversial vibrator on the list is the Lelo Mona Wave. While I think I’ve read more negative reviews than positive,  a few really liked it. I found it boring, useless and overpriced. And finally, the Ooh by Je Joue. The whole collection, really. The Classic and Cock Ring were much worse fails than the mini thing that looked a lot like the Mimi but I hate the line overall because they didn’t try hard enough to make sure that every shape was going to live up to its full potential. The person who thought that the design of the Classic was actually worth selling should be slapped.

The Worst Marketing of 2015: This isn’t something that I mentioned in the video because I feared I would get too emotional and too enraged for words that human ears can hear. The Fifi is a cheap, crappy male masturbator sleeve that some bloggers agreed to review before checking out their social media. Admittedly, it’s not something we’d ever considered before – vetting out a company. But it has to be done. They had fat-shaming tweets, sexist tweets, racist tweets, sex-negative tweets, etc all written by the world’s biggest douchebro. There wasn’t a single meme that was as funny as they thought it was. It was horrifying and shameful. It was HURTFUL. I was in a lot of rage for a lot of days. I didn’t write about it on the blog (just a lot of tweets); but I did get to say a little bit of my piece when the company’s newest rep tried to contact me to review their shit product.

Runners-up in the Worst Marketing of 2015: Fleshlight and their new #nohojo marketing. Because yes, let’s follow Fifi in their technique-shaming approach to get people to buy a Fleshlight. They used to be a decent company so I don’t know what the hell happened. In the world of penetration masturbators and sleeves, Tenga is King Brand. Then there was that fucking “vagina beauty contest” which made me want to throw things because hello, disgusting and sexist and also: NOT A VAGINA.  I love how this article about the winners was all “oh we thought this would be a body-pos thing”! Um…..*cocks head* No.

 

I admit, for the first part of 2015 life was stressful. I spent the first few weeks agonizing if we would find a house in time (so that we wouldn’t have to sign another year of a rental lease) and then we found one and I spent 3 months dealing with the seller/selling agent from HELL. It was one of the most stressful times in our lives thus far. Then we got the house! Then the move. And it was all such a big deal for us, our first house, that I didn’t realize how much of my time it would suck up. It’s not the first time we’ve moved since I’ve started blogging, but this time it derailed me for months. My blog traffic had been extraordinarily high right up until the time we moved and then I had to back off from everything – social media, Reddit, writing, etc. So now I’m working to get back what I lost with the blog, and the crash hit my mental health took – turns out months of endless extreme anxiety followed by a briefly manic happy period then crash slowly into a depression. Who knew. There’s been a lot of mental health work in our house and one of us is working on getting on better meds while the other is just hoping a job change and focusing on her blog will be enough. Ahem.

For 2016 I’m not making resolutions, I’m making plans and wishes.  Blog profits are up, my mood is overall better and I attended the best sexuality conference of my life this year with concrete plans to attend in 2016. No more hoping that the timing is just right; I plan to do everything in my power to attend Woodhull’s conference. Wild horses couldn’t keep me away!

I have so many plans one would think I came up with the list on a manic high from a good mood swing, but no. It’s all been a long time coming. I want to redesign my blog header to incorporate my beautiful SheVibe drawing. I want to create a Library page where I pick and choose certain educational DVDs and books to recommend to you all. I definitely want to write and review more frequently. I plan to do the occasional video more; I’ve been told it makes me seem less angry/less scary and more human. I’m trying to go back to showing more of my humanity and realness here and on social media. The Great Glass Test post is coming along. The Lube Page is also nearly finished. While I still want to test brand new sex toys, I also want to focus on reviewing more affordable sex toys in the hopes I can find some great items under $50, or around it.  And of course all throughout 2016 I’m giving away gift cards to my newsletter subscribers – at least $100 worth of cards every single month ($50 to Crystal Delights, $50 to Shevibe and then usually a third card).

Personally, this year I need to focus on my health; losing weight, getting into a shape that isn’t “round” and taking care of my gallbladder. I tried to avoid it but I am going to have my gallbladder removed sometime in the next few months. It will be a big blow financially (insurance, yes, but a high deductible). We’ll also have a lot on our plate this spring at the house; the landscaping is a nightmare thanks to the terrible things the “flippers” did to the property and we want the place to look nice! I want a garden! I also need to escape the job I have right now and get into something where I don’t have a coworker who is a racist bigoted infuriating nightmare of a person.

What are your plans for 2016?

  1. My second video, and of course it was as stressful as the first one. I apparently, finally, have so much crap on my phone that I ran out of storage space! The first few video attempts had weird lag, and then would cut me off. Finally I saw the brief notification “SD card full”. Well, crap. My final attempt is what you see above, no edits. It’s raw, I’m weird, I cried, I rambled, I made funny faces. *shrugs* That’s just how I am. If I tried to make a perfectly polished professional video then you’d never see one at all! I hope you can accept this video as-is; these won’t happen often, and maybe I’ll get better at them but I’m trying to convey more….emotion, I guess, than what you can get in just words.
 Posted by at 6:20 pm
Dec 072015
 

So it looks like this year we had a LOT of trouble with the newsletter points options1. Seems a lot of people were confused because they *could* choose both options, despite my best efforts to explain it to death. The next giveaway won’t  include bonus points for being a subscriber I guess, just points for joining new. 

BUT THAT’S OKAY BECAUSE YOU HAVE ALL OF NEXT YEAR TO WIN SOMETHING!

Before I announce the winners I need to tell you this. Despite giving away 7 gorgeous Pure Wands and a glorious Eleven, I wanted to do more. Give more. I had so many people enter (which proves to me how awesome Njoy is because this is maybe the best turnout I’ve had) and I wished I could give away even more. So guess what? Haha, yes, I thought up something else crazy and now my email subscribers have a chance to win ONE OF THREE gift cards every month in 20162.

  • Crystal Delights hopped on right away, offering up a $50 gift card every month to one lucky winner.
  • Shevibe is also offering up a $50 gift card every month to one lucky winner3.  Hey, this covers half the Pure Wand!
  • I’ll also have a small indy shop gift card every month, probably $25, from either Early to Bed in Chicago, Smitten Kitten in Minneapolis or Come As You Are in Canada!4

I’ll have restrictions; things like “don’t sign up for my newsletter from more than one email account per person” because that’s just cheating. And the love is going to be spread out amongst my readers, so only one winner per household per company (if you win a Crystal Delights card you might still be eligible for Shevibe, but not another CD card). Every month, email subscribers will have access to a secret page on my site where they can put their hat in the ring for a card. I’ll be using Rafflecopter just to gather the info, make sure you’re 18, etc.  But basically, there’s a whole lot of win for a lot of people.

Some things people requested I review/write about that WILL be happening: A lube guide; lube reviews (basically part of the guide); more info on glass toys; the Flex by Crave; a guide about using a silicone sex toy vaginally and anally; a jar with both shitty materials and silicone; more reviews on affordable, body-safe sex toys; the Tantus Rumble vibe; terrible toys with scathing reviews – don’t worry, I’m certain that will happen; Swan Wand.

Some things people requested I review/write about that sadly, will not be happening: Nipple toys – just not my thing; Bad Dragon toys – not my thing, not real sure about supporting them; butt plugs – we’re not butt plug fans here (but hey it’s a guest review sitch I’m open to discussing). Harnesses – I LOVE my Aslan Minx which I should probably write about, but otherwise I don’t have anyone to USE a harness on and that feels like a pretty important thing. I suppose I could just report on how well it’s made, if it fits me (being fat), etc.

A bunch of you requested that I review the newer Lelo stuff. I’m reluctant to give them the business, frankly, which is also a post I might need to write but I can’t deny that many people love them and want to hear about them. I’ll work on it!

ON TO THE WINNERS!

Winners have 48 hours to respond – if someone doesn’t respond I will draw a replacement winner.  If this is you, check your email and get back to me! I want to get these in the mail ASAP.

Twitter Contest@maybegasoline & @techjeeper

Tumblr Contestboneslikeporcelain, cactus-wren-bd, & Minxymilly

Blog ContestDov & Cathy

Eleven – Sophie Rose

I admit, it was hard. It kinda broke my heart not to be able to fulfill as many winners as I actually wanted to, especially on reading some of the “why I want to win” answers. I wished for 20 more Wands, honestly. I’m a greedy giver! Hopefully though the gift card contest can help out those who didn’t win today.

  1. I also had a number of people not follow the instructions for the comment on the post for Blog Readers contest, so if you commented but didn’t include the 3 things then that’s why your entries were invalid. Gotta read the instructions. folks, I tried to make things simple this year.  If you see that your entries count went away, that’s because I had to make a shocking number of people’s entries invalid because they entered the blog readers only giveaway AND social media giveaways. I made it super clear, and clear that I’d disqualify.
  2. Hey maybe it could be one of four, never know! I’m still waiting to hear back from a few people!
  3. US, Canada, UK and AU only
  4. This one is subject to change, as we’re still hammering out details with some of the shops
Nov 252015
 

Black Friday in retail land usually means deals on odd brands that no one would normally buy, making you think you’re getting a sweet deal. But in reality, it’s gonna break on you 2 weeks after the warranty is up. Black Friday in the world of sex toy retail though is the time to spend your dough on the items you’ve wished and sighed for. This is perhaps the best chance you’ll get at finding deals on pricey sex toys, if you know where to shop. SheVibe won’t have “door busters” on crappy, porous sex toys, they’ll just put everything on sale and let you pick. Need some help? I have IDEAS.

SheVibe

SHEVIBEBLACKFRIDAY

Shevibe is doing a progressive sale. You don’t have to spend a lot, really, to get their best deal of 20% off. Since SheVibe’s prices are already as low as many manufacturers will let authorized retailers go, you’re getting a pretty sweet ride. You can buy from SheVibe knowing that your package will arrive safely, discreetly and that they won’t ever send you anything else you didn’t order (no porn catalogs in the mail, here!). You can be assured that your order will be backed up by fabulous customer service, too.  BONUS FOR MY READERS: In addition to the fabulous discounts, you can also enter another coupon code and get a $10 gift card good towards your next purchase if you spend $100 or more, or a $5 giftcard if you spend $99 or less (1 card per order). Use code LILLYBB5 if you spend less than $99, or LILLYBB10 if you spend more than $100. And yes, you can get BOTH the giftcard AND the sale pricing, you can use two coupon codes.

So, what should you get? This sale would be the perfect time to splurge on things that are a little over-priced (ahem, Lelo – this sale might take the items back to what they used to be priced at), making the hit to your wallet a little easier. Consider the L’amourose Rosa or Denia because I’ve loved these two vibes a lot. Would 20% off the awfully-named Womanizer that has me so confused make things a little easier? And of course, you can’t forget the Doxy Die Cast and the Doxy Skittle. Not a Doxy person? I don’t love it as much, but this would be a great time to consider the Magic Wand Rechargeable. I’ve heard a lot of good things about the pricey Lelo Hugo, so that might be on your list. And of course the Hot Octopuss Pulse can’t be missed for those penis-havers in your life. If you’re a Tom of Finland fan, this sale plus SheVibe’s pricing makes the Kake Collector’s Cock almost tolerable in pricing.  And it almost goes without saying, if you don’t own it yet, add the Tango in to your order. If you want a gift pack for someone new to sex toys, I recommend the We-Vibe Tango Kit which has a Tango, the insertable (Glow) vaginal sleeve and the baby plug (Dusk).

Sometimes I have to just recommend entire brands, because they’re that good. This is the time of year to consider purchasing a beautiful wood creation from Nobessence, or some artistic glass from Fucking Sculptures. For harnesses and more, my absolute most favorite brand is Aslan Leather because their leather is sooo soft and comfortable. While you might win one from me,  anything by Njoy is a must-have in your collection.

Need a couple small things to round up your order? Don’t forget the lube — Sliquid and Good Clean Love are the best — and consider an anti-bacterial toy storage pouch such as the Sugar Sak.

Tantus

Grab Bag sale is still going on but RIGHT NOW through 3pm PST you can take 40% off ANYTHING. YES ANYTHING.

Crystal Delights

Their much-loved Mini Twist Plugs are $15 off for Black Friday.

SMITTEN KITTEN CYBER MONDAY

I was looking at the Smitten Kitten offerings and noticed they have dildos in brands/styles I don’t see often like Hole Punch; Vamp styles that Shevibe doesn’t carry; Standard Glass dildos (very good quality brand); Acrylic Wands (looks like glass, doesn’t break); they also have some quirky queer stuff. Their prices on most sex toys seem to be slightly higher than Shevibe, so I’d still recommend Shevibe for most things (and the Shevibe sale is still going through today).

SK also has neat lube sample packets where you get a bunch of brands, similar types, and all are truly body-safe (no crappy chemicals).

 

 Posted by at 1:00 am
Nov 202015
 

7WandsWhy 7 Njoy Pure Wands? Because I’m a dork. Because that’s how much I love this sex tool.  It’s no toy; it’s a gorgeous hunk of body-safe polished 316 grade stainless steel that seems to be made of magic as far as my g-spot is concerned1. In my 7 years of reviewing I’ve never loved a dildo as much as I love my Pure Wand and I want many people to experience the (n)joy it brings.

I knew, well I’d hoped, that we would be buying a house this year. I just didn’t know when. So when the house buying and moving occurred in April I had no idea how much it would distance me from blogging and just in general being available on the ‘net. I’d had grand plans to attempt to locate various retailers willing to give me a total of 7 Njoy Pure Wands. It felt daunting because I am very selective in who I work with and I don’t work with 7 retailers. Between the dauntingness of the task and the exhaustion from moving, I didn’t do a giveaway during my blog anniversary.  When I was at Woodhull’s Sexual Freedom Summit I got to see Greg again, the genius behind the best dildo ever, and also met his partner Marla. When I said to Greg “Yeah I’d considered doing a “7 Wands for 7 Years” giveaway this summer but between the house buying and what seemed like an inability to procure 7, it never happened but it would have been cool” he says to me with confusion “Did you email us??”. I said no, with equal confusion, and he said “Well email me! I’ll send you 7!” and on your behalf, readers, I nearly fainted with giddy joy of being able to make 7 people verrrry happy.

And here we are!

OH BUT WAIT, there’s a special unscheduled guest. Marla sweetly tucked in an Njoy Eleven. Since I’ve already had the pleasure of experiencing the Eleven, one of you will get it. I AM SO EXCITED! BE EXCITED WITH ME! Yes, the Eleven comes in a black leather purse which is also awesome.

This is a World Wide contest with FREE SHIPPING!

The utter joy of viewing 7 Pure Wands and 1 Eleven in preparation to shuttle them off into the world to their new homes comes with another responsibility – the cost of shipping. The way I normally do my giveaways is that if the winner is in the US, the shipping is free for them but for those outside the US (or outside countries the giveaway sponsor won’t ship to) I take the item myself and the winner pays shipping. However, the Pure Wand weighs 2 pounds 12 ounces when packaged, while the Eleven weighs 4 pounds. This makes for damn pricey shipping, even just in the US. So after a fabulous idea by Sarah, I called upon other bloggers to help give you the gift of completely free shipping. These bloggers are all chipping in to pay for your shipping. All you have to do is follow them on Twitter if you don’t already. Yes, this is a lot of people to follow but I can promise you, you won’t regret it. We’re a pretty fun & interesting bunch of people. Some of us tweet more, some tweet less, many will have giveaways of their own that you’ll get insider scoops on! I chose these people because they have less than 2,000 followers and they need some extra exposure to the world; plus I think they’re all pretty rad, and their blogs are great. All bloggers who joined in write honest reviews with no bullshit – I wouldn’t recommend anything less. Please say hello and thank you to: Artemesia Femmecock; Apricot Creams; Bex Talks Sex; Blissfully Orgasmic; The Big Gay Review; Come Heather; Dizzygirl; Erocentric (Mandy); For Sploosh’s Sake (Lena); Miss Ruby Reviews; Mary Q Contrary; Ninja Sexology (Lunabelle); Perineum Plunders; Purple Elysium (Ely); Pimento Mori.

Tumblr Peeps Only – 3 Njoy Pure Wands

Tumblr has blossomed into a fabulous place for spreading sex education; it’s an amazing way to “preach beyond the choir” as Tumblr bloggers who might not normally reblog a thing about sex toys do it anyways because they want to keep their friends safe. I’ve selected some posts that I think are pretty important for education; to get an entry, simply reblog them. Where this gets a little more interesting is that you’ll get bonus entry points for every person who reblogs it directly from you. If someone reblogs from you and then someone reblogs from them, that third tier down won’t count for you, just the immediate reblog. Make sense? I’ll give out 50 bonus points total (1 for every reblog you get) for this. You may encourage your readers to share the post with their followers, but I ask that you NOT ask them to share because of a contest. They should share if they want to spread the info. They will share if you’ve added some insightful/helpful info/anecdote. But if I see that you’re all “HEY share this so I can win a dildo thx!” I won’t count your entry. If this seems overly complicated to you, contact me and I will try to explain it differently. I’ll either add in the points you receive for this manually to the widget OR just publish the tally when the contest is over, for transparency.

Three of the seven wands will go to Tumblr readers, winners chosen at random so the more entry points the better your chances.

7 Wands for 7 years – Tumblr Edition


Twitter Followers Only – 2 Njoy Pure Wands

This one is simple. Follow all of the lovely other bloggers who are paying for your shipping. As a reward for following all of the wonderful bloggers who are making sure your shipping is FREE, you can unlock the “refer friends” bonus entry, which I don’t think has a cap on the referrals! Referring friends is where you’ll probably get the most entries.

Two of the seven wands will go to Twitter followers, winners chosen at random so the more entry points the better your chances. 

7 wands for 7 years – Twitter Edition


Blog Readers Only – 2 Njoy Pure Wands

I know I have some fans who aren’t on Twitter or Tumblr. You guys get your special section. If you’ve already entered in the Tumblr or Twitter contest, you can’t enter here. You CAN but I’ll know you’re the same person and you’ll be banned all across the board, so don’t try to cheat. Yes, I will know. Please don’t disappoint me by trying.

You must comment on this post to win. Your comment must contain 3 things; leave any out and you’re not eligible. You’re going to comment on this post and tell me which review of mine is your favorite, and why; you’ll also tell me what item(s) you’d most like me to review next OR what guides/material safety questions I should answer via post. Finally, a (brief!) bit on why you want the Pure Wand.  I will keep an eye on the spam filter for comments that don’t show up. If your comment doesn’t get approved within 24 hours of posting it, please contact me.

BONUS ENTRY POINTS: If you already subscribe to my newsletter, please be sure that you’ve signed up for the giveaway under that email address. Those who are subscribers prior to the contest will receive 5 bonus entry points. Don’t try to lie. If you fill out this entry and you weren’t a subscriber PRIOR TO THE CONTEST then I’ll have to disqualify you. 

Two of the seven wands will go to blog readers.

7 Wands for 7 years – Blog Edition


Open to ALL – Njoy Eleven

First, I need you to understand that the Njoy Eleven is heavy (2.75 lbs by itself) and large. The smaller end is 1.75″ but it’s also the best end to hold it from, and the larger end is 2″. This thing feels like a bit MORE than a two-inch-wide silicone dildo just due to the solid steel and the weight. If you have problems with certain dildos catching your pubic bone, this may or may not be the best toy for you (but, neither would the Pure Wand).

This contest is open to everyone, again with the free shipping thanks to those lovely folks above (even if you aren’t entering to win a Pure Wand, give them a follow as a thanks for covering your shipping on the Eleven).  If you entered to win a Pure Wand you can also enter to win an Eleven.

Njoy Eleven

 

For specs on the items, see here for the Pure Wand and here for the Eleven.

Winners will have 48 hours to respond to my notification email when the contest ends. I want to ship these out ASAP so that you might get them in time for the holidays. For International shipments I will put a reasonable (but not the retail value) price value to help mitigate high customs/VAT.

This contest is proudly sponsored by THE AMAZING NJOY – Thank you Greg and Marla for sending me these!!!!

  1. While not everyone adores the Pure Wand I think its success rate has to be better than 85%