What Are Sex Toys?
Sex toys are objects or devices that are intended to help with sexual pleasure in consenting adults. There are many varieties, including sex toys for men, sex toys for women and sex toys for couples. There are sex toys that can be used manually, or there are ones which come with vibrating attachments that are included for further stimulation.
When looking for sex toys, these can include items that are used in BDSM, but for the majority of users, this type of sex toy will be out of their pleasure zone.
Sex toys have been around for many years, and many years ago they were called marital aids. This was because they were often used to spice up married life in the bedroom.
Nowadays, their use has become more common when individuals or couples are searching for a better thrill, or one that can add to their sexual fantasies or role playing kinks.
The sex toy industry is enormous, and manufacturers are always trying to dream up new toys, but most new ones which are devised are variations of what is already available. Some are intense or sensual and some are very unique indeed.
Adult sex toys were once only sold in backstreet stores or specialty sex shops, but now that many of them are manufactured in other countries, there has been an explosion in online retailers that specialize in all manner of types, for both female and male pleasure.
Some online stores often cater for all tastes, while some specialize in one type of toy or group of people, such as sex toys specifically aimed at gay men or individuals who have a particular fetish, as examples.
Types of Sex Toys
There is no end of varieties of sex toys available today. Some are gender neutral, while some are designed for either male or female use.
Here is a brief overview of the more common sex toys for adults you will see when shopping:
- Vibrators – Vibrators used to be one color and made from hard plastic. Nowadays, they come in a variety of shapes, sizes, materials, and strengths. You can find mini vibrators, rabbit vibrators and rechargeable vibrators with or without added testicles!
- Penis Toys – These often replicate a female vagina. They are now more commonly known as pocket pussies, penis sleeves or strokers. These handheld toys are slipped over an erect penis where the man masturbates, but the inner tube is full of many bobbles and nodules to replicate a vagina, anus or mouth.
- Sex dolls – These used to be inflatable dolls that have a hole for a vagina, and although these are still available, there are even more lifelike versions being produced. These models come with removable vaginas or other orifices for easy cleaning, and can be posed into different sexual positions too.
- Cock rings – These are (in the most basic form) a rubber ring that is rolled down over (and to the base of) the penis. This restricts blood flow from exiting the penis where the penis grows harder and more prominent. Some cock rings come with a second ring that sits behind the scrotum, as well as models that vibrate for added stimulation.
- Dildos – Dildos are very similar to vibrators in overall appearance, but now they have moved up a level, and are designed with the same kind of materials used in sex dolls. They are realistic to the feel of an erect penis and don’t have an added vibrating unit. There is a large selection of different types, but the majority are based and (in some cases) molded on the male penis.
- Anal Toys – In some instances, toys designed for vaginal use are used for anal play. However, there is a broader range of anal toys that are designed for this specific purpose. Some are designed to: train the anus to get it ready for sexual intercourse, stimulate the prostate, or deliver sensations in the rectum to accompany other sexual practices. There are many variations of these available and can be designed for female, male or gender-neutral use.
- Butt Plugs – Butt plugs are one of the more popular anal toys you can find. These are ones that are used to stretch the sphincter muscles and can do so more than any other toy. Now there are butt plugs which go far beyond anal training and are starting to become stimulating sex toys in their own right. These can be used during solo masturbation or whilst enjoying intercourse with a partner.
- Strap Ons – These sex toys are mostly for females, but guys can use them too. In tune with their creation, they can be used well on a female partner, or they can be used on a male partner.
Their primary use is to perform penetration with the dildo attachment, so the female takes on the male role during role play or for fun. Often used between lesbians, they are now being used for ‘pegging’ too, where the female performs anal sex on her male partner.
How to Choose Adult Toys for You
Because there is such a broad range of adult toys available, choosing the best one can all fall down to personal preference and what it is you wish to achieve.
There are also the factors of solo play, partner use or gender roles or swaps. Solo play can be for vaginal or anal fun in women, or for men, it might be for the purposes of anal stimulation or regular masturbation with a pocket pussy.
There are some universal, determining factors you can use that will be the same, regardless of what kind of adult toys you are looking for…
- Choosing reliable suppliers – This can be vital because many adult toys are made abroad, and finding one that uses all body safe materials can be hard.
- The best material which meets your needs – There are lots of different materials in use, and each can deliver very unique sensations. You can choose from rubber, silicone, TPE, stainless steel, or glass as the primary materials in use.
- Size and shape – This area can take the most deliberation because you have the same solo or partner issues, gender factors, and also what it is you are aiming to achieve. There are stimulation adult toys or the larger anal toys that push individual’s rectums to the limit. There are all shapes and sizes to meet every sexual desire.
What Are the Benefits of Sex Toys?
Using sex toys does deliver a variety of benefits. This is true, and it doesn't matter whether you are a single playing, or utilizing fun as part of a committed relationship. Each sex toy does deliver unique benefits, but here is a general look at what using adult sex toys can do for you.
- Enjoying sexual pleasure – Many individuals enjoy the feeling they get from using sex toys. This doesn’t mean they don’t enjoy sex; it’s another way of discovering oneself by using self-expression.
- Boosting sexual performance – Some sex toys can boost sexual performance. This can come from increased sexual stamina or muscle control. It all depends on which toy you use and how you use it to train your body. A pocket pussy, for example, can help men who have premature ejaculation issues; they can masturbate to the point of orgasm, and hold back before proceeding.
- Personal relationships can be improved – When you are with a partner for a long time, things can become stale in the bedroom department. While this isn’t true for everyone, some couples can benefit from the added spice that adult sex toys deliver. Bonding and trust are also enhanced during consensual play.
- Less chance of contracting disease – STD (sexually transmitted disease) and STI (sexually transmitted infection) contraction can be reduced. If an individual needs a sexual release, they can do so by using a sex toy, rather than searching for a partner for the evening, for example.
- Mental health and wellbeing – It’s well known that having sex or having a sexual release can improve the mood. This, in turn, relieves stress which is always a good thing. Great sexual health can lead to enhanced overall health. Science proves it!
Adult Toys & Some Safety Considerations
Adult toys have unique safety considerations depending on which type you decide to use. However, there are general safety concerns that all users of sex toys need to be careful of.
Let’s take a look now:
Sexual diseases or infections can be passed on when sharing sex toys. It is always recommended to wear a condom on your sex toy if they are of such a design where they will fit.
No sex toy should be used for anal play and then be passed to the vagina. The rectum and anus are full of bacteria that will quickly be moved to the vagina and can cause problems. Keep anal toys for the anus and vaginal toys for the vagina.
If using anal adult toys, then precautions need to be taken to avoid unnecessary mess or excess bacterial issues. Anal douching and personal hygiene need to be followed before and after use.
Toys used for anal play do need to be safe for anal use. This includes flared bases or loops to prevent any toy from being sucked into the rectum. On top of this, the right size of the toy must be used, and this can be even more crucial when partners are involved. Not all vaginas or anuses are the same for every person.
If in pain, stop. Add more lubrication if your toy is being inserted, and be gentle. Again, size and caution need to be used to take care of the body at all times. If it’s not enjoyable, then it’s not worth it.
Where Can You Use Your Sex Toys?
Sex toys can be used almost anywhere, or for any scenario you can think of. There are basic dildos that can be used by males or females for vaginal penetration, or for anal penetration if that type is purchased.
Many of these now come with suction cups so they can be placed on any smooth surface. This now gives users the chance to try a variety of positions with many toys.
In the case of cock rings, these can be used with partners to help delay ejaculation, or they can be used for men who suffer from erectile dysfunction. In many instances, they can perform a little more regularly once they have an erection, even if this is a short term solution rather than a cure.
When you begin using anal toys, there are many scenarios available. Partners can simulate double penetration, or they can use them for additional stimulation when masturbating. Men can stimulate their prostate, while there are groups of individuals who like to role play and move on to BDSM, and therefore use more advanced anal or sex toys. An excellent example being tail butt plugs that are used for adult pet play.
The limiting factor is imagination when it comes to using sex toys. Even if you are alone, you can take on daring roles and wear butt plugs or beads for discreet stimulation and possible orgasms while out and about with friends. Aha! If your partner has the remote control to a device, this can be extremely sexy too.
How to Take Care of Your Sex Toys
All sex toys need to be thoroughly washed and cleaned. How this is done will vary between materials, but the very least will be warm, soapy water. Also, depending on the material in question, some toys can be sterilized in hot water or they can be run through a dishwasher. But, this does depend on the material type and if they come with built-in motors for vibrations.
Anal sex toys are the ones that need the most care because of the nature of where they are being used. The anus is a haven for bacteria.
Care of sex toys goes beyond just a wash, and the surfaces do regularly need checking for cuts or tears, and in the case of glass sex toys, any cracks too if they are accidentally dropped. In many cases, as soon as you see a cut or deep tear, this will be the end of your toy, and you will definitely need a replacement.
Softer material toys will be sticky after washing and drying, so renewal powder is recommended with your purchase. When storing, always use original packaging or purchase a separate pouch that comes with an antibacterial lining. Sex toys should then be stored in a cool, dark place.
Many individuals purchase a dedicated box for sex toy storage. Just make sure they don’t touch each other between uses.
Common Questions People Ask about Sex Toys
What is the best lubrication for sex toys?
This depends on the material used. If they are created with silicone, then don’t use silicone lube. Also, water-based lubes dry out quicker, but when used for vaginal use, this isn’t so much of a problem. The anus doesn’t generate its own lubricant so you will need additional applications from time to time.
Can I get desensitized from too many vibrations?
It is possible. It is also recommended to switch up the speeds and even twist the toy in use. This not only helps prevent this desensitization but additionally, you can feel added stimulation too.
I bought a sex toy and cleaned it as instructed, but my vagina felt like it was on fire. Why is this?
The sex toy industry is not regulated. Some foreign manufacturers add chemicals such as phthalates to bind their materials together. This is more common in softer sex toys. These can cause this burning sensation, and it shows exactly why you need a reputable supplier to purchase from. Another issue might be that your toy has a tear where bacteria got in, always check them regularly to be sure. If this is the case, it’s definitely time to replace it.