A few years ago a new concept in dildos arrived, called the Split Dildo. The reaction was as split as the sex toy itself. I’ve read polarizing reviews of both adoration and contempt, so when I was asked to review the Funtoys G-Vibe I figured I would land firmly in love or hate. I was a little nervous at first. I expected a lion, however, and got a kitten.
I’ve never tried the Split Dildo but it seemed that the dildo was not modest in girth, and according to Kara Sutra required quite a bit of pressure to keep the “ears” together and was something you definitely felt. Unfortunately, the G-Vibe is….boring. It looks like a nice luxury vibe; in fact the stylings look a lot like the first Lelo Insignia line. The silicone is even the same as Lelo, with a matte silky finish to it. The buttons are nearly identical to the Lelo Insignia line and the vibrations even remind me of early Lelo and the Insignia Isla – very surface-buzzy and moderate at best. More bark than bite, actually – sure it’s “quiet” but it’s not “nearly silent”, yet even so the noise is more intense than the vibrations. There are two motors, one in each tip. At high speed the vibrations may fool you into thinking that they have potential, if you barely touch the thing, but any pressure at all gives you faux-vibrations. I’ve experienced this before in toys: the Extase Liberte, the original Lelo Tiani, and the Picobong Honi to name a few. It has the sort of vibrations that force you to try the patterns hoping, in vain, that the rapid-fire changing of the motor will give you something that maybe feels like a little more oomph. And in fact the final pattern does. Those staccato every-3-seconds bursts of just enough more intensity end up frustrating you more than anything. It tells you that the motor might have had the potential to ekk into the realm of rumbly but stopped 2 miles from the border. Funtoys describes the G-Vibe as having “six modes with changeable intensity from light tremors to intense vibration”. The “intense vibration” part of that statement couldn’t be more wrong.
The “intuitive controls” are just fairly average. An increase button, a function mode button to change between patterns, and a decrease button. Standard. The buttons are in a good place on the handle, maybe that’s what they mean? There is no button-lock feature, either, like Lelo and a few others. Also take note of the fact that the G-Vibe is merely water resistant. This confuses me greatly. The charging port cover is a silicone plug in the hole – a similar design to Lelo and many other makers of luxury vibrators. Hell, the Lelo Tor II has a completely open charging cover and it’s labeled as waterproof! Be that as it may, I’m not one to doubt what a manufacturer says. But if they want to get into the luxury sex toy game, then they need to make it waterproof. It’s one of those features that people who don’t masturbate in the shower/bath (like me) don’t care about but it doesn’t take away from what we DO like; and there are plenty of people out there who do really enjoy their playtime in the water. Speaking of the charging port, you should initially charge the G-Vibe for 8 hours. It’s said that you will get 4 hours on a single charge, but I would imagine that for at least 2 of those 4 hours the vibrations will be greatly decreased from the pittance they already are.
The ears might look intimidating, especially if you use both of them internally, but they are very very pliable and soft. In fact, I’m almost willing to say they’re just too wimpy. The design is flexible and Funtoys thinks that you can use this design for lots of various methods of stimulation. But the fact is, the vibrations are not enough and the split portion doesn’t do what it should – which according to their site, it should “create a sensation of fullness without stretching the vaginal entrance” and ”Simultaneous stimulation of 2 spots: G-spot and the opposite side of the vagina” – which, in case you were wondering, the “opposite side of the vagina” spot1 has a real name: perineal sponge. But since the ears are so pliable and the split requires very little pressure to stay closed, I don’t really feel what the company advertises. Perhaps it was because I wasn’t aroused enough for the PS-Spot to want any attention but the bit of vibrations that I felt on the posterior vaginal wall just made me feel a little like I had to poop. My g-spot requires a decent amount of pressure OR an intense level of thuddy vibrations, neither of which the G-Vibe could ever come close to offering.
With my skepticism firmly intact I tried to use this as a dual-stimulator in the traditional sense. While the upward-facing ear did actually touch my clitoris, the vibrations, lack of pressure and slim profile meant that I felt very little externally or internally. I decided to go about trying the other suggested uses Funtoys came up with.Sure, it feels slightly different from a straight dildo of the same width, but I don’t feel any sense of fullness nor do I feel enough pressure on either the G-spot or Perineal Sponge to register as anything special in my brain. Despite this, it doesn’t mean that it’s easy to insert. You still have to hold the ears together at the tippy top, you cannot just jam Squidward here into your hole and hope for the best. This maneuvering means, for me, awkward and uncomfortable positioning contortions. In fact it was damn near impossible for me to insert this. I had to contort and reach to basically shove my fingertips, along with the tips of the vibe, up inside of me to get it started.
No? Well how about…..
First of all, my nipples don’t meet up like that. Second, when you try to hold it like oversized chopsticks or the JimmyJane Form 2, something curious happens. It sounds like the same “fatal flaw” that was described by many Form 2 owners – when pressure is applied disproportionately to the two ears OR applied mostly equally and the toy is held handle facing the sky, the vibrators in the ears get kicked out of cycle and almost form their own bizarre pattern. It’s no longer a steady vibration.
The G-Vibe comes in 3 colors – if you don’t like pink or purple though, you’re out of luck. The packaging is indeed very lovely to look at, even if it’s not very discreet for storage. When you open up the box the vibe sits in a foam-like cutout – the glue that is used in this bit (my best guess anyway, is glue) has a subtle but offensive odor to me. I can smell it on the vibe despite washing, and I can smell it on the included storage bag. The bag is drawstring and made of white nylon, it feels quite nice. It does have the Funtoys logo, “ft”, which is discreet. The included charger is USB-only. I enjoy the *option* of USB, but I don’t want it to be the only way. Luckily I have a couple USB-to-wall-plug thingies and that works too.
At the end of the day, I just couldn’t get into this sex toy nor would I recommend it. The vibrations would have to be more like the We-Vibe Tango or hell even the Je Joue MiMi for me to even consider recommending it. Perhaps with truly thuddy-rumbly vibrations that have more power, the stimulation of the G-spot and PS-spot could be felt but as it stands now it was nothing to write home about. While a few people did seem to enjoy the intense pressure from that Split Dildo, the G-Vibe takes caution to the extreme and instead leaves you wanting something more from the split internal portion.
- Until I did my research on split sex toys, I had no idea about this arousal spot. OF COURSE it must be added to the litany of Alphabet Spots. Most often it is referred to as the PS-Spot. Sadly in their drawings, Funtoys just lists it as “P” to which I first thought “um….we don’t have a P-spot”. ↩
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Yesterday, and for the hundredth time, someone on Liberator’s Twitter feed acted like a complete asshole.
Being a seasoned social media watcher, I knew that these offensive and idiotic tweets would eventually disappear so I screen-capped them. And heyyyyy, lookie there….they’re now gone! But thanks to posterity, not forgotten.
Lest we think that the asshattery is limited to whatever dumbass Liberator decided to entrust with the Twitter password this week, it’s also going on at Facebook in spades. SPADES I TELL YOU.
But then when I shared the following photo from their FB stream with my outraged comments, and then others did the same? Well now suddenly the photo in question is gone. And since it was a share, when Liberator deletes it, it gets deleted from all streams. But this is the photo:
Of course it had many likes, and many “high five bro” type comments. I didn’t see anybody on Liberator’s initial posting saying anything bad about it. Which is kinda my point….do we really need a sex toy retailer perpetuating this kind of sex negative attitude??
Due to their bait-and-swtich-esque treatment of Epiphora and previous acts of douchebaggery on Twitter, I’d already lost interest in them as a company. Now? I’m done. No, really. I will find other sex support position pillow companies to recommend, because I am D-O-N-E. Just like I won’t support Chik-Fil-A because their profits get donated to anti-gay-and-lesbian organizations intent on making the lives of gays and lesbians even more unsafe and even more difficult, I will not support a company who spouts off immature, sex-negative, queer-negative shit like a drunk 18 year old frat boy.
This isn’t the first company to lose my support. RubyGlass21 was probably the first company I’d ever seen behave like a child on Twitter. They first started off by tossing out thinly-veiled digs to Crystal Delights. Then they would, unprompted, start spouting off even more lies and bullshit about Crystal Delights via email to the few bloggers who tread carefully and agreed to review. Slanderous shit. Then they’d apologize for puking their drama-llama bullshit all over Twitter in some text-language that is worse than the average 13-year-old. I couldn’t even fucking understand what they were saying on Twitter. It was embarrassing for them.
I wondered if perhaps English was a distant second language to this person, but I don’t think it is. I love the response that tweets are not term papers, that I should lighten up. Hey, I’m not asking for tweets that would pass muster by an English professor. I’m asking for something that is: Professional, Readable, Courteous, Intelligent. Whoever this MJ person is, possesses none of those qualities. And frankly RubyGlass21 could be producing the most awesome glass dildos ever, and because of their behavior on Twitter and in email to other reviewers, I will never, ever recommend them. The height of professionalism and maturity? Crystal Delights, for holding their tongue and not engaging in a pointless Twitter fight with these idiots.
YOUR BEHAVIOR ON TWITTER AND FACEBOOK WILL DIRECTLY IMPACT YOUR COMPANY.
It is that simple. If companies cannot comprehend this, then frankly they deserve whatever backlash they get. It’s common sense. But apparently, neither Liberator or RubyGlass21 have any common sense.
All text and images on this site require permission before they can be used anywhere. To obtain permission click here to contact me
Whenever I see a product, especially a sex toy, that is marketed as the be-all end-all perfect-for-all product….I get skeptical. And then I aim to prove it wrong. I’m happy to be the one proven wrong, lest this be misunderstood as a mission where I will not accept my own “failure” to spot a crappy product. I think you all know better than that, but I also think there might be a reader or two who won’t understand unless it’s spelled out. As much as I love to tell you about awesome sex toys I also love to tell you which ones to avoid.
Update: Fixsation owner tried to leave a “redeeming” comment for the product, shaming me and pretending to be a customer. Professional, eh?
When I first saw the Fixsation I thought “Oh great…another wearable vibe for skinny hetero chicks”. Then I was told that no, no! it comes in various sizes! yay. Unlike the atrocity that was the Venus Penis which had no hope of fitting any woman above a size 12, the Fixsation comes in various sizes. The XXL claims to fit sizes 18-20. That is as big as it goes, however. My pants are closer to a 20 right now because I carry a lot of my weigh in that ring area right below the belly button – my hips, my ass, my belly. Going by the drawings of the Fixsation, I figured I would not be able to wear this at all. I was mostly right. Anyone larger than me would not have a prayer.
Photo courtesy of EdenFantasys
Fixsation is labeled as a “couple’s vibe and panty”, and that is my first bone to pick. A strip of lace does not a panty make. At best it’s a garter belt. Sort of. I suppose this is a minor gripe in the grand scheme of things to come, though.
The Fixsation is “assembly required”. I always appreciate when my rechargeable vibe is already charged up when it arrives at my doorstep, because I’m impatient when it comes to trying out new toys. The vibrator portion of the Fixsation did arrive charged….so at least I was able to immediately tell that that portion was a complete fail for me, but the “panty” portion required assembly. It seems simple enough – there is a silly band of lace and 2 small bra-strap-ish straps that clip on to the lace and eventually run through holes in the vibe to achieve the hands-free feature.
Assembly took me 10 minutes and I nearly launched it across the room twice. I had to get out the tweezers to finish the job. Since part of this sex toy is fabric and it will get dirty, you will need to handwash it…which means you will need to take the vibrator off. And then re-assemble it. My tip, if you should purchase this, is to assemble it well before sex otherwise you will be too irritated to even have sex. Once I had both straps threaded through the side holes it was time to put it on. You step into it like a panty…..just be sure you don’t get things tangled up before you step in. Pulling the lace bit up proved my point that this design is just not meant for fat girls. I had to pull it all the way up over my hips to rest at my belly-button-centered waist area and this was a very tight fit. Someone built differently might have better luck letting this rest on the hips. I then had to adjust the vibe so that it was sitting more or less over the area where my clitoris was….somewhere. Here’s where the failure was the greatest.
I have very full outer labia and mons. It’s kinda natural given my size but I think I’ve always been like this even when I was thinner. When I spread my legs, I still have to part my labia to access my clit. If that describes you at all, then the Fixsation will not work. You pretty much have to look like this Wikipedia photo, with minimal labia and a prominent clitoris. What happens if you should try to spread your labia around the vibrator so that the vibrator will actually be vibrating your clitoris and not your labia?
Pain. Pinching. Pain. Even if you like pain with your sex, this is not the purpose of the sex toy. The sides of the vibrator are a bit sharp-feeling to fleshy flesh since it is made of hard plastic. God forbid you should have pubic hair, because it will get caught up in the sides. This can happen to either one of you, by the way. Imagine a more-painful but less-complicated entanglement similar to braces locking together when kissing. A pubic hair or two yanked out at the root doesn’t exactly keep the mood alive.
Photo courtesy of EdenFantasys
Fixsation is meant for the missionary position sex1 and is advertised solely to hetero couples. I can understand their motive for the audience thing, even though I don’t exactly like it. This toy could work for lesbian couples…perhaps. But to design something just for the missionary position? Fixsation is meant to work with the pressure applied by your partner’s pubic bone. It’s been a long time since I first side-eyed this sex toy but I once ran across something that seriously irked me; I believe it was on the Fixsation website but I cannot find it anymore so I cannot be sure of where I read this but I remember this specifically: It was said that the Fixsation was never intended to be a powerhouse, because the point was to “help” bring her to orgasm at the same time as her partner2. It was purposely designed so that she did not climax from clitoral stimulation alone before her partner. *blinks* I have lots of feelings on that, and none of them are good. Be that as it may, you’ve likely guessed by now that the Fixsation is mediocre at best in the vibrations department. It is pretty buzzy. It has a little more power than the original Lelo Tiani, but not as much as the Tiani 2 or the We-Vibe 3.
Speaking of, since this is touted as a “couple’s sex toy”, let’s discuss how it compares to the Lelo Tiani or the We-Vibe, two other hetero-centered PIV sex toys. Both the Tiani and We Vibe work by inserting part of the toy inside the vagina. If your partner is bigger than average or you do not like anything bigger, then you’d want the Tiani over the WeVibe. But the Fixsation proudly proclaims that it is “non-invasive” which could be a plus for some women. There is no remote with the Fixsation, the button is located on the vibrator. You have to press and hold for about 5 seconds to begin vibrations. One of the reasons I prefer the We-Vibe 3 over the We-Vibe 2 is the remote: it’s awkward and not easy to fumble around a slippery vibrator with slick fingers in the middle of sex to change a vibration speed or turn it off. So the boast of “no remotes needed” for the Fixsation is not a plus in my book.
Moving along….the Fixsation is indeed quiet. Users who are in need of something quiet will find that in this toy. It is made from body-safe materials (plastic). It is water-resistant but not waterproof: Ok for squirters but not ok to wash along with the “panty”3. It is rechargeable, has various speeds of yawn, is fairly small, travel-friendly and “non-threatening” if you happen to have a male partner who is so insecure as to be intimidated by sex toys.
Fixsation would work best for:
- Those who are a size 14 or under, despite the sizing of the XXL version
- Women who do not carry much weight in their belly
- Women whose labia are small and whose clitoris is easily accessed and visible
- Those who do not require much assistance from vibration to help with climax
- Those who prefer the missionary position
- Heterosexual couples, however it could work for same-sex couples if the giving partner’s harness isn’t too bulky
- Solo use if you truly hate holding two sex toys and fit the above descriptions
- Those with cropped or shaved pubic hair
Please note that these aren’t “or” statements, they pretty much all go together and you have to fit most of them. I do not.
I really, really dislike the Fixsation. In fact, I don’t think I’d ever recommend it. There are many flaws, a lot of which are never mentioned in some other reviews. This is another reason why I wanted to get it – if you’re thinking of dropping $100 on a sex toy, you should be fully informed. I am a bit irked that I paid 2/3 the retail for this sex toy because in a way it feels like a gigantic waste of money, but at least I was able to use EdenPoints to cover the rest of the balance after doing a buy-out assignment. I knew though, when I bought it, that it wouldn’t work for me so it’s not like I was disappointed and didn’t have my own gut instinct as fair warning. I specifically wanted to review this item though for a retailer, and at that, one who doesn’t mind a negative review. If I had had to hold my tongue after experiencing this awful sex toy I’d have been mighty pissed.
While I have indeed often wished for a sex toy similar to the Fixsation for use during missionary-position sex, Fixsation falls so short of the mark it’s not even funny. Because we’ve yet to find a sex toy that doesn’t get in the way during sex, he usually gets me off before PIV sex. Our favorite way is his hand plus my We-Vibe Salsa, resulting in an explosive orgasm that he was very much a part of, and it leads to a deliciously sensitive g-spot and therefore extremely pleasurable sex for us. That is what works for us. His cock is too long for me to enjoy rear-entry positions usually, or I’d be using a position pillow like the Liberator Wing, Axis Hitachi, Pulse or BonBon to hold the vibrator in place for me.
Since the Fixsation is technically in the strap-on vibrator category while still being a hetero-couple’s vibrator for use during sex, it’s a little difficult to recommend something else. Of course the Lelo Tiani 2 and the We-Vibe 3 are very decent for Hetero-PIV sex, I can understand that they’re not everyone’s cup of tea. They’re not strong enough for me, personally. The Tiani is pretty darn unobtrusive vaginally, while the WeVibe 3 is quite a bit more noticeable. I would not likely recommend anything from the strap-on vibrators section that looks like a butterfly/bee/whatever. However, this pair of vibrating crotchless panties could work if you replaced the bullet with the WeVibe Salsa….except that it’s “one size fits 45% of users”, so not plus size friendly. The Black Rose Vibrating Panties are very femme and pretty and very adjustable but you’d need to do some cutting and sewing to change them into crotchless panties for sex. Again, I’d also recommend pairing it with the WeVibe Salsa or Tango for a huge upgrade to the vibrator.
ETA: I’ve already heard some pretty negative things about the inventor, Tiffany York, so as soon as I got the comment below I just knew it was her. She must think I’m pretty damn dumb, she used the same email address that is associated with the Fixsation domain! YES, pretending to be a satisfied customer and getting snotty in your comment will TOTALLY discredit my negative review in the eyes of all who shall pass here and doesn’t look suspicious AT ALL. Yup. Yes indeedy. Sorry Tiff, not born yesterday:
- Ok I think I’ve seen a few other positions named, mostly Tantra type positions and things that, frankly, the average vanilla couple doesn’t do ↩
- They use the term “Wegasm” GAG ↩
- Truly I cringe and grit my teeth every time I refer to the “”panty”" and I cannot use enough quotes to accurately convey my reluctance in calling it such ↩
All text and images on this site require permission before they can be used anywhere. To obtain permission click here to contact me
The bane of a bloggers existence some days is the evolution of the Scraper. The Scraper is someone who has set up a website solely to garner advertisers. They have numerous sites like this and they obviously don’t have time to write their own content, so they “scrape” illegally from others. It’s only scraping, though, if they are stealing your entire post1. Many times these scrapers have automated the process and will scrape directly from your RSS feed. I’ve added on anti-scraping plugins to WordPress which put in things such as unique keys (so that I can search for that key and find who else is using it) and copyright / anti-scrap notices in the post – they alert the reader that if they’re reading the post anywhere other than Dangerouslilly.com, it has been illegally scraped and please contact me.
Even worse, however, is when a fellow community blogger or sex toy manufacturer/retailer uses your content in entirety without permission. Some are just completely uneducated as to the rights and wrongs of blogging, but really….we all started out in the same clueless space and most of us have gotten where we are just fine without violating copyright, stealing content or plagiarizing, ever.
What is Copyright?
According to Wikipedia, copyright ‘is “the right to copy”, but also gives the copyright holder the right to be credited for the work, to determine who may adapt the work to other forms, who may perform the work, who may financially benefit from it, and other related rights.’
A few years ago when I was dealing with a site that took harassing me to a new level, which included posting my photos without my permission, claimed that all was well and fair in the copyright world simply because they had attributed the photos to me. Nope, sorry, that is not the only condition that must be met. Especially not since I have this copyright notice at the end of every post and at the bottom of my main page: “All text and images on this site require permission before they can be used anywhere. To obtain permission click here to contact me”. Notice how I’ve stated that all text and images on this site require permission before they can be used anywhere? Yeah. That’s kinda the whole key.
eh. fine line.
There’s an article on Sexis about bloggers and copyright – not necessarily our own copyright but talking about how we steal things. Namely, photos. Some are more guilty than others of course but the fact is, copyright violation in terms of using a photo in your post is pretty rampant. Not just sex bloggers, but any blogger. So while attribution doesn’t equal permission when you’re talking about using someone’s entire post, attribution can equal permission when you’re dealing with photos. It will simply depend on what the copyright holder allows. But if you found the image on Google because hundreds of others have used it without attribution, what can be done? The best we can do is protect ourselves with watermark copyrights on our own photos, and when we use a photo that we know actually belongs to a fellow blogger, retail store or manufacturer…..attribute it. Ask for permission if it is a blogger.
Microblogging vs Blogging
Now, here’s the rub: With the over-saturation of social media sites where you “share” stuff with your followers, you “reblog” on Tumblr, you “retweet” on Twitter…you have a blurry line of kosher sharing when it comes to blogging. When you reblog and retweet on Tumblr and Twitter respectively, you are copying what someone said and providing attribution. The line is blurred even further with Twitter, where “copyright” doesn’t really seem to exist. I mean, how can you possibly lay copyright to a Tweet? On Tumblr it’s a little different I suppose, but many people treat Tumblr as blogging. So if I posted a photo on Tumblr and nowhere else, I still retain my copyright. That photo is my intellectual property and if you post it on your own Tumblr without an attribution link, then you’ve effectively stolen content.
The fine line lays in the type of sharing. Tumblr, Twitter, Pinterest, even Facebook are all considered forms of “microblogging“; places where the “reblog” is common practice and accepted. Standard Blogging is vast and varied; we’re accustomed to WordPress-based sites, Blogger, LiveJournal, etc but there are many other places as well. Somehow, the concept of “reblogging” seems to have bled over (incorrectly) to regular blogging with the prevalence of microblogging.
Product Reviewing and Ethics
In the past I went toe-to-toe with Lelo when I noticed that suddenly they went from quoting excerpts of reviews to pilfering entire (but slightly modified to remove retailers links and in some cases, had no links to the review itself) review posts. They’d never told anyone reviewing products (given to the reviewer by Lelo) that this would be done; they never asked for permission; and in fact they did this on reviews where the product came from retailers! After raising a fuss like I am wont to do, they apologized and removed it all and now only have excerpts (with links).
I’ve noticed that niche sex toy maker Duncan Charles has been lifting entire reviews2, as well, and what’s worse is that they have ignored emails. Back when I posted about Lelo, Shanna Katz commented that it had happened to her a lot over the years as well. I was offered the chance to do reviews for Nexus and at the time I viewed their site, I noticed that they had full text of reviews with no hyperlink. They had a text-only site address, though. But I wasn’t cool with having my entire review posted so I turned them down.
Ethical Blogging Practices
~Reblogging is NOT copying someone else’s entire blog post without their permission, throwing up an attribution link and calling it well and good. I see this as copyright violation and content theft. Also, just Bad Blogging Manners. You can quote something from my post, with an attribution and link, and that is a horse of a different color. You can share a photo I’ve posted here via Tumblr, with an attribution and link, and that’s just fine.
~Posting someone’s photo without an attribution is content theft and copyright violation. I don’t care if the click-through link goes to their blog, the attribution line (and link) is absolutely necessary.
~Creative Commons licenses on someone’s blog does not mean you get to skirt copyright basics or do away with attribution. Creative Commons exists to allow someone the flexibility of letting people know that sharing and even revamping is fine (with attribution) but it doesn’t dissolve copyright.
~And please…don’t EVER think you’re doing someone a favor by putting their content on your site. It’s insulting, it’s copyright violation, and it will earn you a very bad reputation.
- I’ve oddly run across scrapers who are more like news feed, where they take an excerpt – presumably for search engine content?- but not the whole post. This is usually done after they’ve been caught for full post content scraping. ↩
- Of course since all the reviews lifted seem to obviously be reviews originally published on EdenFantasys, the only people that DC has to listen to is EF ↩
The Bedroom Kandi line’s Hold On To Me is a kegel exerciser set that is similar in execution to the Lelo Luna Beads. There are a lot of differences between the two products but a lot of similarities, namely, the ability to gradually increase the weight of the beads as your muscles get stronger. Both products feature 4 ABS plastic spheres/balls/beads, the ability to use one or two at a time, and a silicone “holster” for when you want to use two at a time. Since I do a lot of comparisons in my reviews it’s only natural that I’ll be doing a lot of comparing in this one to the Lelo Luna Beads because it is a product that has been around for years and so many are familiar with them. The Hold On To Me spheres are a lot more femme-y and girly looking whereas the Luna Beads look more plain. This is a type of product though that, for me, design is a far distant second to function.
While the Luna Beads are only 2 different weights (the pink beads are 28 grams each and the blue beads are 37 grams each) the Hold On To Me set contains 1 bead each of 4 different weights. All beads look identical, but there is gold paint on the outside to differentiate between them, like dots on dice. The bead weights are: 25 grams, 30 grams, 35 grams, 40 grams. A big different between the HOTM and Luna beads is the size. Luna Beads are 36mm while HOTM beads are only 30mm. 6mm might not seem like a lot but it matters. Users of the Luna Bead system who found that the beads were a little too big for comfort might enjoy the smaller size of the Bedroom Kandi Hold On To Me set. The holster for the HOTM beads is also more diminutive and a lot more flexible – this can be a good thing or bad. I personally found that this floppiness made the 2-bead set harder to insert than the more sturdy Luna Beads. Also, for the Luna Beads the retrieval cord appears to simply be cotton string but it is a nylon coated string. It doesn’t absorb fluids or stain, and it is attached to the bead itself. For the HOTM set, the retrieval cord is part of the holster – and it is very stretchy. In fact, it stretches out to double the original length. This is bad. You do not want stretch on a removal cord. Why?
It’s like a rubberband. Literally. The sleekness of the material combined with the small size and stretch is a recipe for disaster when met with slippery fingers. And your fingers will be slippery because in most women the use of kegel beads increases their natural vaginal lubrication. I had an issue with this and it resulted in a rubberband-like painful snap to my labia. Yes, you’re all cringing and crossing your legs right now as well you should be. I’m not the only reviewer who had this problem, Sada K did as well.
Another problem with the design is this “dot” system for designating the weights. The paint is on the outside of the plastic spheres, not the inside. And it does indeed rub off. I used my double set twice and washed them 4 times. You can see below that the gold painted dots are completely gone and the BK logo has faded considerably. Where did this paint go? What is it made of?? I don’t know, and it concerns me. Sada had this same problem as well.
The spheres look quite a bit different in the online photos than in person. Online they appear to be mostly magenta but in reality it is a clear ABS plastic sphere with a magenta colored weight inside that rattles around. When reading about how the Lelo Luna Beads work, they specifically state that you don’t have to do anything, that it is basically a passive exerciser. As the weights “vibrate” (they don’t really, it just sorta feels that way) and rattle around inside the plastic outer ball, that whole motion is tapping your kegel muscles, making them contract slightly without intervention. I can confirm that is true because one time I just stepped right up to using both of the blue Luna Beads for a few hours (stupid) and the next day my kegel muscles were sore. Like “too many sit-ups” sore. Except, ya know, not my abs. Some people don’t like that obvious rattling feeling of the Luna Beads; those people would perhaps appreciate the Hold On To Me spheres better. The plastic sphere is smaller but the size of the weight appears to be the same so you don’t get that somewhat-pronounced rattle that the Luna Beads produce, the HOTM is more subtle. So subtle that for me it didn’t really do anything. I tried the 2 lighter weight beads at first and then the next day the 2 heavier ones and I never felt the “whoa too much” soreness.
However, the manual never claims that the spheres will work that way. The manual actually tells you to do active kegel exercises while wearing the beads. Which, to me, defeats the purpose. Other kegel exercisers that you are meant to work against are larger, more solid, somewhat like a dildo. You clench around it, and well….I don’t know how they work exactly, I’ll be honest. But I know that you don’t insert them up inside the vaginal canal completely, like you do with balls/beads/spheres. So judging from the manual, the whole thing seems very pointless. I did do kegel exercises while wearing these and couldn’t discern that they were helping me in that way. And it’s not like you have to walk around all clenched up lest they fall out.
Speaking of the manual and instruction, I ran across some very troubling information in the exercises section. OhMiBod/Bedroom Kandi was actually recommending that if you’re unsure how to clench the PC muscles, you repeatedly stop and re-start the flow of urine while on the toilet. Repeatedly. As an exercise, not as a “training” guide to familiarize yourself with how and where and what to clench. That is not healthy! I can remember hearing from Ducky Doolittle (whom I consider to be the kegel master, she knows more than the average doctor) that it is problematic because it can cause infection and it can also bring about “overactive” bladder, which is the opposite of what you want! I immediately emailed BK via OMB about this, and heard back from Brian, founder of OhMiBod. According to him there was only a small run produced and many of these went to reviewers and such so a change in the manual is possible; he said they would change that part, I hope they do.
Finally, my biggest problem with the HOTM product is the material. It is stated that the black holster is silicone. I questioned Brian on this after I performed a flame test (which failed spectacularly) and he has held fast to the statement that the material is silicone, food-grade. I questioned if it might be a blend and he claimed that he consulted the lab paperwork to find that it was not a blend. He also tried the flame test himself and says that he did not have the results that I did. I don’t have proof of this, but he came off as a fairly honest individual. However, I took the item in question with me to MomentumCon knowing that there would be retailers and manufacturers present. I showed my holster to them and no one hesitated to say that it didn’t appear to be pure silicone. You can see the destruction of material in the photos below, but a video and more in-depth post
will be published very shortly is up explaining the flame test and showing various results. The behavior of the HOTM “silicone” material matched exactly that of the Screaming O Studio Line Vibrating Makeup Brush, which I know now to be a “silicone elastomer blend” product.
All in all, I’m not a fan of this product and I can’t recommend it. Silly name aside, the material safety issues and ineffectiveness of the weighted balls leaves me cold. The color scheme is pretty (to me, but then I love black and magenta). The box and packaging is nice and reminiscent (at first) to a cross between Njoy and Lelo. Except that it’s not. When you first open the container you see the spheres all nestled in a cloud of black satin. This is achieved by a cardboard riser with holes in it that are just barely big enough for the spheres to lay partially in but not fall through. They’re held in place firmly, though. Too firmly. In fact I had trouble pulling the ones in holsters out (that damn stretchy cord) so I had to remove the whole thing and push them out from underneath. After that the magic was lost and I tossed that part. However if you’re willing to forgive it, it would make for a decent travel case – albeit large – because they wouldn’t rattle. They do include though a satin drawstring pouch for travel.
I really think that the idea of gradually increasing the weights is ingenious and so I’ll continue to recommend the Lelo Luna beads instead.Read More