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What a leather convention can teach everyone about sex and consent


I don’t think I’d ever realized just how “vanilla” I was, and how little I understood about all of the ways you can engage in fun, healthy, consensual, adventurous sex.

“Hotel is closed for private event” read the signs affixed to the front of the Hyatt Regency on Capitol Hill last weekend. A steady stream of people, mostly men, many in leather harnesses, some in collars and on leashes, and some simply in jeans and sweaters, walked in and out in an almost continuous stream.

Mid-Atlantic Leather (MAL), now in its 48th year, is a three-day long celebration of the leather community, a subculture that celebrates various sexual kinks, many centered around leather and toys. Bears, daddies, pups and others identifying with various subsets roam the Hyatt Regency, participating in conference-like demonstrations about suspension (BDSM where you’re bound and hung) and electro (BDSM involving electric shocks), buying handcrafted leather goods and sex toys, and, of course, partying. (Actual sex was not part of the convention but no doubt took place in private.) It’s a predominantly LGBTQ centric space, although look closely enough and you’re sure to find people on every part of the gender and sexuality spectrum.

My first MAL was in the winter of 2016. I’d just gone through a breakup and my friend had suggested that perhaps it would be good for me to explore life beyond my comfort zone. “Just get ready,” he’d said, “it may be more than your little vanilla heart can handle.” And he wasn’t entirely wrong. It wasn’t that I couldn’t handle it, but I don’t think I’d ever realized just how “vanilla” I was, and how little I understood about all of the ways you can engage in fun, healthy, consensual, adventurous sex.

That first year I met Adam, a dentist in town from Texas just for MAL. “You look like you could use a drink,” he said back in a hotel room he was sharing with a friend of mine.

“Do I look that out of place?” I asked. I’d put on a leather jacket to try to blend in.

“Not out of place,” he said, “just kind of shocked.”

And shocked I was. Not necessarily at anything that was going on at the hotel that night, but more so at the fact that for the better part of my life I’d allowed myself to believe that this kind of sexual openness was only available to a certain kind of person.

“Where I grew up, there wasn’t really anything like this,” said Anthony, a 30-year-old living in Arlington, Va., who grew up in Portsmouth. (The sources for this story preferred that only first names be used, for privacy reasons). “There was no kink culture, and I really wanted to explore it. Everyone here was super welcoming, and that’s why I keep coming back.”

This was a common sentiment. “It’s a different part of the gay family,” said Garret, 28, who lives in Washington. “We all have different interests … and if nobody else respects that, come to MAL because they do here.”

Respect, as it turns out, is a dominating theme throughout the course of the weekend. You might expect that when many attendees are walking around in only a jockstrap and a harness, but it is pleasantly surprising to see how strictly they adhere to that principle. In the era of #MeToo, when more and more queer folks are being vocal about the role consent plays in queer spaces, perhaps the leather and kink communities have something to teach the general public about active and enthusiastic consent.

Ask for permission before petting. Hold out your hand and let the pup come to you first. If the pup doesn’t, or turns or growls, let them be as they may not want to or have permission. This is rule No. 5 as listed on the board outside the 10th anniversary mosh at the MAL Puppy Park, a yearly tradition in which individuals who participate in pup play — a BDSM role-play wherein one participant acts as the “pup” and one as the handler — have an opportunity to interact with other pups. Other rules include: Nudity is not permitted in public spaces, genitals cannot be exposed and DO NOT pull on a pup’s tail or collar. It can cause injury and is disrespectful. Change some of the verbiage and perhaps these would be appropriate guidelines to post at the Academy Awards.

“It’s where I met my current roommate,” said Allyn, a 31-year-old originally from Wisconsin who now lives in Washington, of his first MAL experience. “It was exhilarating. I’d never seen anything like it. It make me feel brave and nervous at the same time.” He didn’t speak to his would-be roommate the first night they met, however. “I mean, I had a ball gag in at the time,” he recounted.

Zack, 23, from Baltimore, also used the world “exhilarating” when describing his first MAL experience. “I got chills coming down the escalator into the lobby of the hotel,” he said. “It’s the closest thing to Folsom I’ve ever been too,” a reference to the San Francisco street fair that’s the world’s largest leather celebration.

Everyone I spoke to talked about descending that escalator on the evening of the opening party. It is truly a complete sensory experience. The sight, sound and smell of wall-to-wall leather and latex on every kind of body, not just seen but celebrated and appreciated.

While I was talking to Garret about the weekend, someone he appeared to know approached him, whispered something in his ear and, after he nodded yes, lifted Garret’s arm and began to sniff his armpit. Garret continued to answer my questions without pause. “There may be something over here that’s not your thing, but then you’ll look over there and see something going on that you’re totally into,” he explained “Don’t be shy, don’t judge other people for something you don’t understand. And above all, come and have a good time. No one is here to be spectacled. It can be a learning and cultural experience.” The sniffer had moved on to his other armpit by the time he finished talking.

Although I have yet to be brave enough to buy and wear a harness to MAL myself, each year I attend I move closer toward that goal. At the very least, the event has highlighted for me the fact that there is an exciting world beyond the “vanilla” one I’d relegated myself to — and has given me a better understanding of the queer community as a whole. At one point, in the leather market, a man who had recently undergone top surgery was trying on a new harness next to a group of folks signing to one another, while feet away a $1,400 bejeweled pup hood was on sale. Only at MAL.

Complete Article HERE!


“The Most Comfortable Harness I’ve Ever Used!”


Hey sex fans!

It’s Product Review Friday again. And today we have yet another swell product from our good friends at The Perfect Fit Brand!

You have been keeping up with all our reviews of the amazing products coming from the award-winning Perfect Fit Brand haven’t you? If not, you’re totally missing out. To find all our reviews, here’s what you do; use the search function in the header of, type in The Perfect Fit Brand, and PRESTO!

And here to tell you all about this new product I’m pleased to welcome the newest member of the Dr Dick Review Crew, Billy. I’ll have him introduce himself as well as give you the low-down on what he has in his hot little hands.

Zoro Knight 6.0 Clear —— $89.95

Hey everyone! My name is Billy. I am a forty-something bi trans man living and loving here in the beautiful Pacific Northwest. As far as I know, I’m the only transperson on the Dr Dick Review Crew. So I’m so glad I have this opportunity to tell you about this remarkable new strap-on, the Zoro Knight 6.0 Clear, from The Perfect Fit Brand.

Let me say from the get-go; this is the most comfortable harness I’ve ever used!

I’m a little embarrassed to say it, but I haven’t updated my harness in 8 years. My old harness with its thin leather straps, which took way to much time to adjust and never really felt all that great to wear, is completely obsolete. The Zoro Knight, on the other hand, is state of the art. It is easy to get on and off, which makes a big difference when you’re trying to stay in a sexy moment.

Before I go on with my review, I’d like to show you around the Zoro Knight because its design is nothing short of revolutionary. The Perfect Fit Brand calls their design a system because there are actually two elements to the Zoro Knight and its companion strap-ons. (I’ll get to the companions in a minute.) The two elements are: 1) The elasticized waistband, which you simply pull on, like a jockstrap. There are no additional adjustments required. 2) The molded baseplate with the dong is all one piece. It is designed with the curves of your body in mind and fits snugly against your pelvis.

The baseplate is made of ultra soft premium silicone. And when it is in place you’ll immediately know why the Zoro Knight is so innovative. The baseplate is designed to transfer the impact of your thrusting to your pelvis instead right on your genitals. Anyone who has used a traditional strap-on will realize how much sense that makes. No more banging against your delicate parts. OUCH!

The baseplate and dong that I have is clear, but it also comes in black and purple…different sized dongs too. The dong is hollow, which makes it lighter, stronger, and more comfortable. You can even use a bullet vibe inside the dong for added sensations. And because the molded baseplate and dong are all one piece, you never need to guide the dong with your hands. That sounds like a small thing, but it ain’t. Once you’ve tried the Zoro Knight, you’ll never go back to an awkward, floppy, uncomfortable O-ring type strap-on.

The baseplate also features a hole below the dong. If you have a penis and have an erection you can use it for double penetration. If ya don’t have a penis, this hole provides good access to your clit, vulva, vagina, or whatever name you give your private bits. The point is the Zoro Knight gives you or your partner access to your genitals, while the dong is stiff for penetration.

I said I’d mention the Zoro companions. There are three types of Zoros — the Zoro, the Zoro Knight, and the Armour Knight. Waistbands are available in several sizes — Small: 28-30”, Medium: 31- 33”, Large: 34-36”, and XL: 37-39”. And the dongs range in size from 5.5” up to 7”. You can see the array HERE!

Since the Zoro Knight is basically a clothing item, you simply toss the waistband into the wash, when you’re done. The silicone baseplate cleans up easily with mild soap and warm water. Or you can wipe it down with a lint-free towel moistened with peroxide, rubbing alcohol or a 10% bleach solution to sanitize for sharing. And, of course, you’re going to share this, right? This keeps everything hygienic and sanitary. No more trying to keep a leather harness clean.

Make sure you use only a water-based lubricant with the Zoro Knight . I suppose some of the newer silicone-hybrid lubes might work too, but I would be careful and do a test patch first. You wouldn’t want to mar the beautiful silicone skin.

The packaging is attractive, but minimal. A simple cardboard box surrounds a formed clear plastic container that holds the waistband and the baseplate.

I haven’t yet browsed all the dong options, but I’d be interested in adding one with a little more detail work. I also, as I mentioned above, got the clear version of the baseplate and dong, which I imagine would be very hot for most folks.

Full Review HERE!


You make me want to shout!


Hey sex fans!

Welcome to this our latest edition of Product Review Friday. Today we feature the second of the two products sent to us by that sizzlin’ hot company, Spare Parts Hardware.

But wait, you didn’t miss the first of our reviews, did you? Well not to worry if you did, because you can find it all our previous reviews archived on my Product Review site, Dr Dick’s Sex Toy Reviews. You’ll find our first Spare Parts Hardware review HERE:

Today we welcome back Dr Dick Review Crew member, Carlos. We’ve missed you sir and we’re so glad you’re back with us.

Deuce Male Harness – $139.99


Thanks, Dr Dick, it’s good to be back.

Those of you who follow my reviews may recall that way back in October 2007, when I participated in my first review; I mentioned I was having some prostate problems. I’ve been calling attention to that issue ever since. Well, earlier this year, I was diagnosed with prostate cancer and soon there after I went under the knife. I had a radical prostatectomy, which removed my prostate gland as well as and some of the surrounding tissue.

Like my Dr Dick Review Crew colleague, Angie, who was diagnosed with lymphoma over a year ago, I’ve been struggling to regain a sense of my sexual-self post surgery. No one; not my doctors, not my nurses, not anyone in the cancer support group I attend ever talks about sex and sexuality post diagnosis and treatment. It’s criminal really.

The surgery impacted every aspect of my sex life — with my myself, with my wife and the periodic connections I used to have with some of my men friends. Thank god I’ve been able to count on Dr Dick to help me through this, because if I had to do this alone I don’t see how I would have made it.

I want to repeat something Angie said. “There is precious little information about sex and sexuality available to cancer survivors. No one seemed to be capable of speaking clearly and unambiguously about how a cancer diagnosis and treatment impacts a person’s intimate life. This conspiracy of silence has got to stop!”

Since the surgery I haven’t had a full erection. Dr Dick tells me that I may regain that capacity with time. I also no longer have an ejaculation. That Dr Dick tells me is gone for good. That really bums me out, but I can still have an orgasm, so I’m really happy for that. Dr Dick gave me some exercises to help me with the arousal phase of my sexual response cycle, mostly it masturbation sorts of things. He also suggested that rather than going without partnered sex, I could try a strap on. Hell, I didn’t even know there were strap ons for men. As you can see, I had a lot to learn.

And this is what gets me to the fantastic Deuce Male Harness that I want to tell you about today. It looks and wears just like a jockstrap. It’s completely adjustable so it always fits perfectly. It’s made of a very sensual fabric. And it’s completely machine washable. Oh, and did I mention it is smokin’ hot? It really bolsters my sexual self-confidence. And that’s about the best therapy there is.

Ok, so let’s take a closer look at the Deuce starting with the fabric. Like I mentioned earlier, it’s soft, silky and body hugging. It’s a nylon and spandex blend, which makes it stretchy and durable. If you’re trying to picture it in your mind’s eye think a quality swimsuit material. All the adjustment sliders are made of a durable hard plastic.

The front panel is super functional. The pouch, just like a jock, cradles your own equipment. If you’re gonna just use a dildo or dong with the Deuce. There is a built-in O-ring to stabilize your dong of choice. But here’s the BIG plus; there is an opening below the O-ring that allows you to slip you’re your cock through so that you can use your own johnson along with the dildo. This is ideal for double penetration; or if you simply want to experiment with a bigger dildo than your own cock; or if you want to keep pleasuring your partner after you shoot your load. Ya see, there are lots of reasons a guy might want to use a strap on even if his own unit works perfectly well.

Unlike the more traditional leather harnesses, the Deuce is really sporty looking. The wide waistband, with the attractive Spare Parts Hardware logo on it, adjusts using velcro. There’s also a second set of adjusting straps on the waistband to gain precision snugness. Even the leg straps are adjustable.

You can use a lot of different kinds and sizes of dongs and dildos, just as long as the ones you choose have a base. And putting the dildo or dong in place is super easy, the O-ring is very accommodating.

Don’t be afraid of using lots of lube, because as I mentioned earlier you just pop the Deuce in the washer and you’re done with the cleanup. Don’t even think of trying that with a conventional leather harness.

The Deuce comes with a zippered storage bag. And there’s even a pocket in the bag for condoms and/or a small bottle of lube. It’s idea for travel.

Finally, let me compliment Spare Parts Hardware on their packaging. It’s beautifully simple, yet amazingly classy and every part of the packaging is completely recyclable. Kudos!
Full Review HERE!



Go ahead, make my day


Hey sex fans!

It’s Product Review Friday and this week we review a great toy for the men folk. And in doing so we welcome a new manufacturer to our review effort, Perfect Fit Brand.

You’ll be hearing more about Perfect Fit Brand in coming weeks, because we have a bunch of their other products to review. But right now let’s check in with Dr Dick Review Crew members, Glenn & Hank, for the lowdown on the toy they have

Fat Boy Cock Sheath —— $41.56

Glenn & Hank
Glenn: “Damn! The fuckin’ Fat Boy Cock Sheath is about the hottest fuckin’ sex toy I’ve had the pleasure to use in just about fuckin’ ever.”
Hank: “As you can see, Glenn is being his usual articulate self. How many times can you use ‘fuckin’’ in one sentence?”
Glenn: “I’m simply being expressive in the best way I know how. So sue me, why don’t cha?”
Hank: “Don’t get me wrong; I’m totally with you on this. The Fat Boy Cock Sheath is as you say, fuckin’ amazing.”
Glenn: “Ok, so here’s the 411 on this product. The Fat Boy Cock Sheath is…well for lack of a better term, a sheath that fits snuggly around your boner. It is made of this revolutionary material called SilaSkin. Apparently it’s a proprietary blend of silicone and TPR (thermoplastic rubber). It is unbelievably stretchy and irresistibly soft. And it come in both black and clear.”
Hank: “We’ve tried other masturbation sleeves that are made of super squishy materials, like this, and we wound up tossing them in the trash after just a couple uses. While we love the softness and pliability, the trouble with most ‘skin-like’ materials is, they are also super porous and nearly impossible to clean. Of course you have to clean it after every use, but you also have to powder it to keep it from getting so tacky that you can’t use it again. It’s a fuckin’ hassle, I tell you.”
Glenn: “I admit, when Dr Dick offered us Fat Boy Cock Sheath to review, I just rolled my eyes. I was expecting the same song and dance as what Hank just described. I was actually going to demurely decline Dr Dick’s invitation until I open the plastic packaging. I did this because all the other ‘skin-like’ materials we’ve tried smelled horrible. It’s the disgusting off gas that is a byproduct of the manufacturing process. And ya know what? All the other skin-like materials are loaded with phthalates, which, if you’ve been paying attention to the reviews on this site is a definite no-no when it comes to sex toys. Phthalates are the cancer-producing chemicals that are used to make rubber and latex supper soft and pliable.”
Hank: “Yep, I’ll pass on the phthalates, if ya don’t mind. Anyhow, where Glenn was going with all of that is when you open the Fat Boy Cock Sheath packaging there is no discernible odor. There is no off-gas, because it is phthalate-free! Once we got wind of this, no pun intended, we couldn’t wait to get home and try this puppy out.”
Glenn: “Those of you who follow our reviews know that I am an insatiable bottom.”
Hank: “That’s an understatement, but please go on.”
Glenn: “Everyone’s a fuckin’ critic. What I was about to say is that I generously allowed Hank to use the Fat Boy Cock Sheath first. I simply stripped down to my jockstrap and climbed into our brand new sling.”
Hank: “Isn’t he generous? He allowed me first use of the Fat Boy Cock Sheath. Truth is he was gonna get the better part of this toy and he knew it. So ok, I have a big dick and I know how to use it. But slipping this sheath over my hog was fantastic. I dribbled some lube inside the sheath then squished it around. By the way, the inside of the sheath is ribbed and bubbled for my pleasure. We only used water-based lube to begin with; because we thought silicone-based lube would mar the silicone of the sheath. We learned later that we could have used whatever type of lube we wanted. Very cool!”
Glenn: “I watched with anticipation as Hank readied his cock. I gotta tell you the visuals were stunning. Oh, I should point out that there is a smaller hole in the base of the Fat Boy Cock Sheath through which you pull your balls. The material is real stretchy; so don’t worry about getting your boys through the hole.”
Hank: “Despite being hard as a rock from the get go, I started slipping and sliding the sheath over my dick. It felt fantastic! I swear I could have blown my load right then and there.”
Glenn: “But he didn’t. Because it was time to punish my asshole and I was all ready for him. I’m proud to say that I can take Hank’s thick 9-incher with relative ease. It’s taken years of practice, but I can do it. The Fat Boy Cock Sheath made his unit scary big and the task all that more daunting. But here’s the thing, the super soft and stretchy SilaSkin added to my pleasure, but didn’t chafe my hole like some of the bigger toys we use.”
Hank: “Speaking of pleasure, I was lovin’ both what was happening to my cock and what I could see what happening to Glenn’s hole. What a sight! My cock, encased in the Fat Boy Cock Sheath, slid in and out of Glenn’s lubed up hole with ease. I was sending him to paradise and I knew it. The squishy sound my dick made inside the sheath added to our piggy play.”
Glenn: “I knew Hank was close to bustin’ his nut so I held on for dear life. With one last thrust he was spent. But I was still ready to go.”
Hank: “A little quick thinking on my part brought Glenn to an explosive finish too. I simply slipped my softening dick from the Fat Boy Cock Sheath and replaced it with one of our beautiful glass dildos. Glenn loves the hardness of the glass, but it never seemed to fill him up. But now the sheath did just that.”
Glenn: “It was fantastic! I was yankin’ on my chub while Hank had a hold of my nuts and rammed the dildo home. I spewed so much spunk I thought it was time to notify the next of kin.”
Hank: “When the fuckfest was over, clean up was a snap. My nut was still in the tip of the Fat Boy Cock Sheath along with a mess of lube, but some warm water and mild soap took care of the whole thing. Cleaning it is easy because the SilaSkin material is nonporous and so stretchy you can actually turn the blasted thing inside out. And once thoroughly dry the sheath isn’t the least bit tacky. This product gets my highest rating.”
Full Review HERE!



Nights In Black Leather


Hey sex fans,

It’s Product Review Friday and we’re all a buzz because today we welcome a very special new manufacturer to this review effort. Allow me to introduce you to Fetish Home Factory. And what a terrific company this is too.

Allow me to add a brief editorial comment before I turn the floor over to today’s reviewers. Fetish Home Factory is unique. Not only did they invite me to pick the items to review, from among their vast array of handmade fetish clothing and BDSM gear. But once I made my choice, they took a week or so to assemble the kit before they sent it to me. And that was astonishing to me. In a world of mass-produced products that have little or no individuality, it is so refreshing to find a true artisan who still makes his products by hand in his own factory.

Ok, without further ado, here are Dr Dick Review Crew members — Gina & Kevin

Leather Bondage Set — $ 49.88

Gina & Kevin
Gina: “We really scored with this Leather Bondage Set.”
Kevin: “Totally! But when Dr Dick sent us an email offering this kit to us for review, both Gina and I rolled our eyes. We thought for sure it would be more crap marketed to the novice kinkster. The Review Crew has already reviewed a bunch of that stuff and all of it was junk.”
Gina: “Yep, that’s what we thought alright. Neither one of us even wanted to make a special trip to Dr Dick’s house to pick up the Leather Bondage Set. That is until he told us we would be pleasantly surprised.”
Kevin: “He was right! This is the real deal. The set is handmade!  Can you believe that?  And it’s made of real leather. How cool to find a manufacturer that doesn’t treat his customers like they were children.”
Gina: “It’s true! And if you don’t believe us just check the Dr Dick’s Sex Toy Reviews site and search for ‘fetish’. You’ll see what we mean about packaging fake fetish stuff to the unsuspecting customer.”
Kevin: “So we finally got some good stuff and I am happy to sing it praises. Oh, and by the way, the photo to the right doesn’t do the kit justice; just sayin’.”
Gina: “The Leather Bondage Set is actually four pieces of handmade leather fetish gear — a whip, a collar, a wrist cuff and a mask. Each one is decoratively adorned with metal studs. Very cool!”
Kevin: “And it’s a unisex set. It looks as good on me as it does on Gina.”
Gina: “We’ve already been to two Halloween parties this year and we both had a chance to wear the Leather Bondage Set as part of our costume. Kevin looked totally hot last week in just a black jockstrap and boots, the cuff, collar and mask, with the whip hanging from the waistband of his jock.”
Kevin: “It’s not a big whip, just about 22” from the hilt to the tips of its 8 leather stands, but it has this very nice detailing, including a finger or belt loop. And you should also know that this diminutive flogger will deliver a stinging beating if put to the test. I invited Gina to apply it to my back before we went to our first costume party and I had some very nice stripes to show off at the gathering.”
Gina: “At that party I was the dominatrix and Kevin was my submissive. There was this other woman there who thought Kevin’s stripes were makeup. She blanched when she discovered my little whip made those marks. We both loved her reaction. I’m like turning into this slutty little exhibitionist and the Leather Bondage Set only eggs me on.”
Full Review HERE!