Let's recite a sex educator's mantra:
Let pleasure be the measure and your body be the guide.
That's inspired by the brilliant Emily Nagoski, author of Come As You Are.
If you’ve been looking for encouragement, or even craving permission to explore something new for your bedside drawer, I’m here for you. I’m technically just a stranger on the internet – I just happen to have A LOT of experience with clients, and a few extra letters after my name, that can definitely be the permission you need.
There’s really no wrong way to use a toy but there are some helpful tips to get things going in a good direction.
Your body may know more than your mind
Our mind is the most important sex organ we have, but sometimes we need to persuade it to take the back seat and let our body drive. Remember that the clitoral complex is a LOT more than the tiny tip we once thought it was. A clitoral complex extends far and wide, creating pleasure in the outer parts of the vulva as well as inside. Today’s video features a vulva pillow, but there’s a more complete explanation earlier in the 12 Days.
Not your grandma’s vibrator
One of my favorite toys to explore more surface area, including the clitoral complex, is the POM by Dame. A femme owned company, this product can be cupped in the palm of your hand to use easily without nudging your partner out of the way. You can also flip it over to use as a massager (remember to clean it before you switch!) or focus on specific areas by using the tip or the side.
Vibration isn’t only for partners with a vulva! Nothing about the POM suggests old-school vibrators, and sometimes all it takes for your male-bodied partner to come around to vibrators is a little first-hand experience. Experiment bringing attention to the shaft, perineum, and around the anus. Keep communicating!
Chasing a rabbit
Yep, a rabbit. Rabbit-style vibrators are always a favorite because they can provide internal and external pleasure simulatneously. Don’t miss today’s educational video -- a quick visual demonstration will quickly put any doubts to rest. And remember to use water-based lube to reduce friction and increase pleasure without damaging the rabbit.
If you like it, should you put a ring on it?
C-Rings are another wonderful toy that can be a powerful tool for increasing sexual connection and satisfaction! Calling it a c-ring seems more comfortable to many of my clients, but “c-ring” and “cock ring” are the same thing. Whatever you call it, when it’s worn around the base of the penis the body can keep blood flow where it’s most helpful to maintain a firmer erection.
You can place a vibrating c-ring with the vibration on top and experiment with shared sensation, flip it around to put the vibrator facing down, or even reverse the ring to bring new sensation behind the scrotum. They even make dual-vibrator c-rings designed to bring the sexual buzz to both partners at the same time.
Finger vibes: The Pop Socket of vibrators
Finger vibes let you enjoy you and your partner’s bodies without having to worry about keeping a grip on the vibrator. Have you ever wished your partners hands could vibrate? You’re pretty close to it with finger vibes! Not having to hold on to the toy makes a finger vibe the perfect tool for hands-on instruction to help teach your partner how to explore your body.
They may look like an Easter prop, but Tenga Eggs are actually a surprisingly flexible toy for you and your partner. Is it weird to imagine a cozy sleeping bag for a penis? Tenga Eggs slip snuggly over a penis, and their unique material brings a whole lot of comfort and joy. Inside each egg is a unique texture to bring different sensations. Use an egg to bring a different experience to a handjob, for solo pleasure, or to reach the required number of ejaculations after a vasectomy.
These things are SUPER flexible. Flip one inside out you’ve got a slippery, textured surface that can be used to explore clitoral stimulation. The possibilities seem endless! Tenga Eggs come with helpful lubrication, and they open on one end only so cleaning up is simple.
A toy that really sucks
If you’ve experienced satisfying cunnilingus (just a fancy way to say oral sex on vulvas) you might have wondered if there are toys designed to mimic the sensation. There are! These toys create a suction sensation along with vibration. They can take a little experimenting to find what works for your body, but it’s well worth the time!
Lower your expectations!
We talked about yesterday but it’s worth repeating: The best toys in the world only enrich the connection you’re hoping to create. Sometimes we try an exciting idea and realize we don’t actually know how to pull it off. It’s completely normal! Have a conversation with your partner before you try a new toy so you both understand it’s ALL exploration and curiosity. There is no “should” for you to live up to!
THE CARE AND KEEPING OF TOYS
Your toys and your bodies will be healthier if you clean what you use! Here are some tips from Brown University:
If you are using a toy with batteries, be sure to store your toy and batteries separately. You are wanting to avoid any chance that batteries could leech into your toy.
Use a damp, soapy washcloth to clean your electric toys, preferably with anti-bacterial soap.
Keep toys stored in a container or pouch (to keep them clean) and in a cool, dry place.
- Glass: Wash glass toys with soap and water. Pyrex toys are dishwasher safe. Do not expose glass to extreme temperatures.
- Stainless Steel: If attached to an electrical device, use warm soapy water, being careful not to submerge any electrical components. If there are no electrical components you have a few options: Boil them, soak in a 10% bleach-water solution for 10 minutes, or place it in the dishwasher.
- Hard Plastic: Clean with anti-bacterial soap and water. Do not boil.
- Silicone: You can choose from 3 options to clean a silicone toy. Either boil for 5-10 minutes, put it in your dishwasher (on top rack), or wash with anti-bacterial soap and warm water. Do not boil silicone vibrators because you will destroy the vibrator mechanism.
If you’d like to learn how to clean leather, rubber, cyber skin, or plastic go check out their full article.
To see the full collection of 12 Days of Sexmas product recommendations to date, click here.