Sex toys are objects or devices that can be used for sexual stimulation. If you want to spice up your selfcare sexy time or shake things up in the bedroom with a partner, introducing sex toys into sexual play can be fun, healthy and explorative! While sex and toys are both exciting things, the two words together can be extremely daunting. However, know that there is little to fear and LOTS of fun sex to be had! So, here is my quick beginner’s guide to sex toys!
Sex toys are most commonly use for solo-play or self-masturbation. To start, masturbation or giving oneself sexual pleasure is perfectly normal! People masturbate for many different reasons. Masturbation can help us better understand our bodies, releases tension and helps us sleep, and can even reduce menstrual cramps. But most people masturbate because it just feels good. Treat yo’self!
While more commonly known toys like vibrators for people with clitoruses can give opportunities to explore one's own body, sex toys aren’t just for solo-play. Sex toys and mutual masturbation are a great way to get to know your partner’s body and what works best for the both of you - communication is key!
Pick your poison
So you’re ready to head to shop? First things first, the world of sex toys can be pretty daunting at first so you need to know what you’re dealing with. I got you covered!
Vibrators are the perfect starter for a sex toy beginner. These babies vibrate (hence the name) and are perfect for clitoral stimulation. They range in size and are probably the most affordable and accessible toys in the market. With adjustable speeds and power settings, vibrators allow you to take control of your sensations!
Dildos come in a range of shapes, sizes, and textures - most are penis-shaped and can be worn with harness if you or your partner want to stimulate. For beginners, choose a dildo that you feel comfortable with and don’t forget the lube!
Rabbits combine the best of both worlds! The rabbit is a vibrating dildo with a bunny-eared bullet on the side. This means that you get deep vaginal penetration and clitoral stimulation at the same time. (editor's note: The dual-function often results in a steeper price so unlike with vibrators or dildos, it's harder to find quality ones under forty dollars. We did find some this $17 dual-stim vibrator, and though reviews were pretty favorable, many mentioned it broke easily, so we're not sure how much we'd recommend it).
Also commonly known as fleshlights, toy vaginas are skin-soft sleeves that imitate the feeling of a vagina.
Christian Grey, dat you? Beginner bondage toys like blindfolds and handcuffs are a safe and fun way to explore your limits within control. Remember to constantly communicate with your partner and make sure you are both comfortable, turned-on, and happy!
Editor's note: there's so many aspects of bondage, and BDSM as a whole, that we could go on linking forever! We recommend you check out the two websites we've been sourcing so far -- Unbound and Spectrum Boutique -- and their extensive kink departments for ungendered, eco-friendly, affordable products.*
Pick the right material
Though size and shape are very important, sex toys come in a variety of materials. Because what turns-on one person might not be so hot for another - it’s important to know what you like. Here’s a breakdown of the best materials for beginners:
Silicone, the material of choice for most designers is hypoallergenic, easy to clean, feels smooth, and is super durable! However, don’t use silicone lube with silicone toys otherwise it will stick to the material and damage it.
Glass toys not only look pretty but can be heated in warm water and cooled down to allow for experimentation with different temperatures.
The material of choice for classic vibrators, plastic is hygienic, feels good, and generally the cheapest option. You can also use all kinds of lube with plastic toys!
When using sex toys, it is important that you stay safe so that you have a good time. Here is a breakdown of important things to remember:
Take care of your toys and keep them clean to avoid infection. Mild hand soap and hot water will usually do the trick!
Use lube! But make sure you don’t use silicone lube with silicone toys.
Always use a condom during partner-play to avoid STIs.
Don’t share sex toys. Toys meant for partner-play are a given, but in general, don’t share vibrators or dildos with others even if you have washed them super well.
Regardless of how you identify, everyone deserves to feel good about their bodies and enjoy sexual pleasure. Hopefully, after reading this little guide, you’re feeling a little more educated and excited to explore your sexuality with some sex toy oomph!
Remember to take your time to explore and find what works best for you and as always...have fun and stay curious. <3
Banner Gif by Molly Soda for Shop Spectrum Boutique
*Note -- upon reading this over, we noticed our links are almost exclusively from Unbound and Spectrum Boutique. This piece was not commissioned by either shop: we're just big fans because those two stand out in a pretty hetero-/cis-normative industry.