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Now what?


Name: Jen
Age: 25
Location: Florida
I am a young and attractive female with a great personality and many friends, but when it comes to men… I just don’t get it. I date many guys, but I can’t seem to get a guy into a relationship. I wont have sex with a guy unless we’re a “couple”, but the men I date seem to be turned off by this fact and don’t stay in the picture for long. In the past, I would have sex with guys I dated, but it would always end as soon as a relationship was mentioned. Any tips on how to get a guy to stick around without having to put out?

Basically men are pigs, darling. They want what they want, when and how they want it. (And just for the record, you appear to be just like most men, right? You have a very strict notion about how things should be and you wanna have it just that way.)

Nowadays the men folk don’t think it’s necessary to commit to a relationship just to get laid. The marketplace, so to speak, is brimming over with less encumbered pussy.

Now, far be it from me to suggest that you change your behaviors or value system. But you might want to take a look at why you are using sex as a lure? Maybe you’re good in bed, but not great relationship material. Or it might be that you are simply fishing in the wrong hole, so to speak.

Try connecting with a good fundamentalist Christian boy or one of them fine Mormon missionaries that are always floating around in pairs. They’re generally cute as the dickens in their white shits and black ties. And they will probably have a similar outlook as you as to the proper place for sex.

However, you may also discover that men with more traditional values about sex also have very traditional notions about the place of women in a marriage. Ya know, like barefoot and pregnant. You may even find that one of these more traditional types will do you one better by insisting that there be no nookie till you convert and get married in the church or temple.

In other words, beware of what you wish for; you may actually get it!

Good luck

Name: Tessa
Gender: Female
Age: 33
Location: Sherman Oaks
My husband and I are taking our first tentative steps into the world of kink. Unfortunately, we really don’t know what we’re doing. Are there any good guides out there for the novice kinkster?

You betcha, darlin’! Let me call your attention to Dr Dick’s How To Video Library. Click on the Video On Demand tab in the header. This will take you to the library’s start page. Once inside you’ll find everything your little hearts could desire in terms of guides for the budding perv. In particular, I’d like to call your attention to the series put out by the ever popular, Nina Hartley.

Nina is one of the most recognized and respected people in the adult industry. She is as well known for her outspoken support of the industry as she is for her more than 600 adult titles. Nina established herself as one of the top porn stars of the 80’s. Her success continued strong in the 90’s when she did some of her best work. Today she uses her position as one of the world’s most popular adult stars to advocate sex education and sexual freedom among couples and singles.

Look for: Nina Hartley’s Guide To The Perfect OrgyNina Hartley’s Guide To Stripping For Your PartnerNina Hartley’s Guide To Sex For The Bi-Curious WomanNina Hartley’s Guide To Foot FunNina Hartley’s Guide To Strap-On SexNina Hartley’s Guide To SpankingNina Hartley’s Guide To Double PenetrationNina Hartley’s Guide to Sensual DominationNina Hartley’s Guide To Couples SexplorationNina Hartley’s Guide to Threesomes  and Nina Hartley’s Guide To Bondage Sex. Just to name a few.

These handy dandy guides demystifies the particular fetish, takes the time to explain why fetishes are alluring, and what to do when one is curious about how to play with that fetish. And the visuals…well they will tantalize and inspire.

If Missy Nina doesn’t cover the particular kink that you are looking for, just do a search for the particular fetish you’re curious about. You’ll find just about everything at Dr Dick’s How To Video Library. Try search terms like: bondage, discipline, role-play, tickling, tit play, costumes, cock and ball torture, fetish, cross-dressing, diaper and medical play. The list goes on and on.

And the best part of all of this is that you’ll be able to view these videos by the scene, or in their entirety. Heck, you can even download to own. And you do it all from the comfort and security of your own computer. Simply put there’s no better way to become a big fat pervert than indulging in Dr Dick’s How To Video Library.

Good luck


Lovin’ It!


Product Review Friday is back again and we have an interesting group of products from our friends at

Dr Dick Review Crew members — Gina & Kevin and Karen do the honors. So let’s get right to it.

Ultra Harness 2000 For Men —— $80.51

Gina & Kevin
Kevin: “We have the hot set up for you! This here is the Ultra Harness 2000 For Men. And I haven’t had so much fun in ages. I know you’ve all heard about strap-ons for women, right? Well this is a strap-on for men. I kid you not!”
Gina: “So you’re probably wondering, why would a guy need a strap-on when he already has his ‘tool’ dangling between his legs. Ever hear of erectile dysfunction? Or say a guy wants to please his partner with a little, or a lot more than what nature gave him. Or say there’s some hot double penetration play in the offing, but only one partner.”
Kevin: “There ya go; took the words right out of my mouth. Actually the Ultra Harness 2000 For Men is a kit. It comes with the three-way fully adjustable all leather harness, which expands up to 44 inches in the waist; a realistic looking 7”x1.75” dildo; and an adjustable or detachable butt plug. They thought of everything.”
Gina: “Although this thing is designed for a man, and they have a version for women, I was able to wear the Ultra Harness 2000 too. But I think it would be cool to get the harness designed for women and decide which I liked best.”
Kevin: “The Ultra Harness 2000 come with the patented Vac-U-Lock technology that uses a plastic plug to attach the dong to the harness. It’s brilliant, really! Plus you can buy an array of attachments and accessories.”
Gina: “Speaking of attachments; we will also be reviewing, the Kong Realistic attachment today too.”
Kevin: “I’m like totally game for new experiences and so even though I don’t have ED, and my cock is a generous size, and Gina is not into double penetration; I strapped on the Ultra Harness 2000 with the dildo that came in the package. You see the harness has a hole in it that you put your own cock and balls through and snap it closed. Then I adjusted the very hefty butt plug and sank it in my ass. This took more time than I expected, because it is considerably bigger than I am used to.”
Gina: “Once he had the whole thing arranged he called me in the room. There he stood with two raging hardons, one of which was dripping precum like crazy. It was a site to behold.”
Kevin: “You can blame the butt plug for all the precum. I was filled to the hilt, so to speak.”
Gina: “We slipped a condom on the dong and Kevin had a ball fucking me with both of his cocks. It was a riot! You should know that I won’t insert a dildo made of this soft material inside me. It’s fun to look at and play with, but I won’t insert it without a condom.”
Kevin: “A condom is a must for any dildo made of this kind of realistic feel material, because this stuff is very porous and it can’t be sterilized. And if it can’t be sterilized, it can’t be shared. Oh, and you can only use a water-based lube with this thing.”
Gina: “You should also prepare yourself for the odor that emanates from the box when first opened. It’s a sickly sweet smell that is pretty overpowering. This was another reason that I didn’t want that dong in my box. I insisted that Kevin air the thing out in the garage for a couple of days till the smell dissipated. The off gas tells me the materials used in this toy are probably toxic to some degree. I would also guess that they contain phthalates, PVC and possibly latex. So be warned!”
Full Review HERE

Vac-U-Lock Kong Realistic —— $39.03

Gina & Kevin
Gina: “Hello again. This review is basically a continuation of the Ultra Harness 2000 review we just posted. We decided to review these products together because, well they belong together.”
Kevin: “In the Ultra Harness 2000 review we mentioned that there are a number of different attachments and accessories that you can buy for your harness. Well, the Vac-U-Lock Kong Realistic is one such attachment.”
Gina: “This is one gigantic dong, folks! It’s actually scary in its realistic appearance. It even has faux pubic hair. I know, WTF? And this isn’t even the biggest model they make, but I digress.”
Kevin: “Gina’s right; when I pulled this thing out of the box, I went ‘DAMN!’ It’s made of a soft, lifelike material that makes the Kong Realistic look so realistic. But as we learned in the previous review; that comes at a price. The off gas that you smell when you first open the box tells us the materials used in this toy are toxic to some degree. We also suspect that they contain phthalates, PVC and possibly latex. This is not necessarily a problem, just so long as you don’t use the thing internally without a condom.”
Gina: “That’s right; use a condom when you play with this thing. Not just for health concerns, but for clean up too. The Kong Realistic is made of a very porous material and it can’t be sterilized. And if it can’t be sterilized, it can’t be shared. And you can only use a water-based lube with it.”
Kevin: “So ok, this time around Gina used the harness. The Ultra Harness 2000 we have is designed for a man but she says it fits her too. Attaching the Kong Realistic is easy with the patented Vac-U-Lock technology, which uses a plastic plug to attach the dong to the harness.”
Gina: “The Kong Realistic is so massive I could hardly believe my eyes when I looked at myself in the mirror. No wonder guys with huge dicks think they rule the world.”
Kevin: “I looked at the dong warily too. This would be the biggest thing I’ve had in my ass to date. Would I even be able to do it? I warmed up my ass with a decent sized plug. And when I thought I was ready, I gave Gina the green light. She slipped on a condom and looked at me with an evil gaze.”
Gina: “Ok, are you gonna tell them, or am I?”
Full Review HERE

Silicone Taffy Tickler Water G —— $25.19

I took the Silicone Taffy Tickler Water G from its packaging hoping against hope that the prickly surface of the toy would be soft and pliable. But my hopes were soon dashed. I wondered to myself; who designed this thing, the Marquis de Sade? And if the Taffy Tickler is really made of silicone as the package says, I’ll eat my hat. It doesn’t feel or smell like any of the other quality silicone toys I own.

The Taffy Tickler is designed as a G-spot vibe, as the curved tip suggests. My only question is who has a tough enough pussy to withstand the insertion of something akin to a scrub brush. I certainly don’t! Not that I didn’t try. Like the good little reviewer that I am, I did try. First I used it externally. Despite being very sensitive in my genital area, I did find that if I lightly dragged the Taffy Tickler over my pussy lips and above my clit, the sensations were pleasurable. Next, while sitting up, I just laid the Taffy Tickler with the vibration on high (it has one of those rheostat sort of controllers) between my legs and against my pussy. This was a very interesting sensation too. It sent shivers down my spine.

But insertion was impossible for me and I like girthy toys! Even with the loads of water-based lube that I used on it; it didn’t smooth the way. The lube just got lost in the crevices and I couldn’t even get the tip fully inserted. This has got to be the biggest disaster of my Dr Dick Review Crew career.
Full Review HERE



It Must Be Something In The Air!


A rash of pretty bizarre messages have been arriving the past few days. I’m so lucky.

While I want ya’ll to know that I’m delighted to hear from each and every one of you, particularly those of you from the far-flung corners of the globe, there’s just so much I can offer by way of advice.

Often, the best I can do is offer some generic information about one thing or another, then suggest that if the concerns persist, that person ought to seek professional help nearer to hand than me. So regardless how many people write in with further questions, the only thing I can do is repeat myself. (See below for examples.)

Others write to me with a pressing problem, but fail to include enough information for me to advise them properly. Thus I find myself asking more questions of them than they do of me.

Name: glen
Age: 42
Location: Santa Ana CA
Is it possible to give coitus to a vagina while another man’s penis stays inside the same vagina?

Yep, you betcha! It’s called double penetration, DP for short.

Name: y
Age: 35
Location: Indiamalia7.jpg
Will breasts become bigger due to having sex?

Not from just having sex, darling! But if you get pregnant from having sex, you can rest assured that your boobs will get larger then.

Name: aamir khan
Age: 22
Location: pakistan
hi sir… i have a problem when i talk to girls so there will b little cum going from my penis. and i m dischargig vry soon. so whts dis??? and wht shold i do??

image-1.jpegI do believe you are referring to what is commonly called “pre-cum”. This clear alkaline fluid produced by your Cowper’s gland during sexual arousal lubricates and neutralizes the acidity of the urethra that will soon carry your jizz, with its payload of up to five hundred million sperm. Your urine, which also passes through this shared tube, leaves your urethra acidic. And if your body didn’t neutralize the acidity before you shot your wad, all your sperm would die.

Name: Jim
Age: 50
Location: Portland
I have red balls! I have noticed many porn fellows with similar red balls, but I do not find this condition attractive. I have tried fungicides and hydrocortisone. I try to keep my crotch dry, even using cornstarch powder after a shower. Any advice?

f9905211-bf1a-48bd-b58e-26853f54503c.jpgRED BALLS? I’ve heard of blue balls, but not red balls, per se. Porn fellows often have red balls because their cockring is too tight or they have been using one for too long.

Your problem sounds, however, like a bad case of jock itch. That’s no fun! Jock itch is a pretty common fungal infection of the groin and upper thighs. If you’re using an over the counter antifungal cream and a cornstarch-based powder to keep things dry down there, and you’re still having a problem, SEE YOUR DOCTOR!

You may simply need a pharmaceutical grade fungicide. Or you could have scabies.

Name: james
Age: 31
Location: CA
hi, i am not getting proper erection while intercourse,,,got recently married what shud i do?

I need more information! Are you not aroused enough before you start the fuck? Can you get fully hard when you jerk off? Were you a virgin when you married? This must be a bummer for a newly weds.

Name: Jim Beans
Age: 24
What pornographic resources are available for blind folk? Do you have any suggestions?

Have you tried Besides being able to hear my weekly podcast on, you can hear loads of other hot and steamy erotic stories, music and other entertainment. Check it out. Tell ‘em Dr Dick sent you.

Name: Mohan
Age: 30
Location: Malaysia
can i have children with my hypospadias condition? Should i get an operation?

I have no way of knowing how severe your hypospadias is, or if it might interfere with you having children. SEE YOUR DOCTOR! Although, if you’ve lived with this condition for 30 years, it can’t be too severe, right? Corrective surgery is a last resort and should only be considered in the most severe cases.

Name: john
Age: 31
Location: new zealand
Hello doc .i have hypospadias and my dick is only 3 inch if fully erect..pls advice me.

That’s small, for sure. But 3” erect is not uncommonly small. There’s not much a fellow can do about tiny meat, except learn to love it and let it give you all the joy it can. Not much you can do about the hypospadias either. But since you’ve lived you’ve lived with your dick this way for 31 years, you probably know all of this already, huh?

Name: jake
Age: 16
Location: Grove City
im at 6 inches and I wanna get to 7 or a lil lower how can i do this? could i get pills at this age? and if so what should i get?

You could leave it the fuck alone till you finish puberty at least. You could also be happy with what you have, because some folks, like the guy above you, would be delighted to be as hung as you.

BTW, there are no pills that work for growing a dick longer. Wake up, puppy!

Name: sheema
Age: 41
hi dr, i am 41yers old lesbo mom. i love lesbian sex. i have 4kids. one dughter and 3 sons. my sons ages is 22 18 12. my dughter age is 16yers. i have one girlfriend for sex. my girlfriend come my home and we make sex. one day we having sex then my dughter see us. she ask me what you doing with aunt. i dont tell her. but in my mind a idea. i want having lesbian sex with my dughter. tell me what shold i do. plase.

SERIOUSLY! A forty-one year old woman, and a mother of four, needs to ask if it’s ok to have lesbian sex with her underage daughter? Get otta of here!

What kind of mother are you? If your daughter wants to dabble in muff-divin’, let her play with someone her own age.

Incest, particularly the adult to child type, is considered taboo in nearly every culture, both past and present. There’s plenty of good reason for this. While lesbian sex doesn’t involve the genetic concerns (inbreeding); it would involve the most devastating aspect of incest — the secrecy. No one violates this universal taboo in the open. The secrecy and the inevitable shame and guilt will, sure as shootin’, destroy you family dynamic.

People, if you find yourself in a seductive situation with family member, don’t give in to the temptation.

Good luck everyone!


Dismantling the myths of rape culture


By Matthew Wade


It’s a double edged sword: as a queer woman, your sex life is objectified if you’re too femme, or dismissed if you’re too masc. In light of the recent SlutWalk rally in Melbourne to protest slut-shaming and victim-blaming, Matthew Wade spoke to queer women about how their sexual identities are policed in Australia.

Men often fetishise the sex lives of queer women or erase them completely, with little elbow room in between.

When she first came out and started dating women, Natasha Smith was femme-presenting, and her sex life was a point of objectification.

“A common question at the time was around what I did in bed, but not in a way that made me feel empowered,” she told the Star Observer.

“People would ask if what I did was really sex, and who the ‘man’ was in the bedroom.

“When there’s no man involved other men have to try and figure out what this tantalising thing is… when a woman’s sexuality isn’t defined by them they turn it into a form of entertainment.”

On the flip side, Smith believes the sexualities of queer women that are more masc-presenting are often invisible, as they’re not seen by men as ‘real’ women.

“Queer women live in this weird dehumanising space where they’re stigmatised as sex objects for the straight male gaze or they’re denied,” she said.

For her Master’s thesis Smith focused on the impact homophobia and sexism had on same-sex attracted women.

She interviewed women aged 18 to 60 and many told her they had experienced street harassment and ogling, with men yelling at them for holding another woman’s hand.

“There’s this idea that you’re an object but if you fight back and resist that, it comes with the threat of escalating violence,” she said.

For many of her interviewees, revealing their sexuality to a male who may be flirting with them in a nightclub would have damaging repercussions.

“As soon as they said they were a lesbian, they’d be called a slut, a dyke, and would be subject to public humiliation,” she said.

While shame and stigma are commonly heaped on the sex lives of queer women, this becomes much more apparent when a queer woman has a more grievous encounter with sexual assault or rape.

According to the United Nations, Australia has one of the highest rates of reported sexual assault in the world, more than double the global average.

However, because men often try to delegitimise the sexualities of queer women, their voices and experiences are left off the table.

Smith believes rape culture affects society at large, but that for queer women it can be particularly damaging.

“If you’re a queer woman and you happen to be more masc-presenting there’s a weird sort of erasure of your sexuality,” she said.

“And because people misunderstand rape as something connected to sexuality, many think queer women aren’t likely to be raped.”

When it comes to survivors of sexual assault and rape, Smith wants to debunk a common misconception: that rape is about sex.

“There’s an assumption when it comes to sexual assault and rape that they’re inherently sexual acts – but they’re not,” she said.

“They’re violent acts of power that use sex as the weapon.

“The myth that rape is somehow related to the sexual attractiveness of women is what leads to the dismissal of the experiences of queer women.”

Beyond the masculine and feminine gender binary that subjects queer women who present either way to sexual fetishisation or erasure, queer women who sit somewhere along the spectrum also face stigma around their sexual identity.

Where Smith recalls being asked intrusive questions about her sex life as a femme-presenting woman, Melbourne resident Luca Vanags-Smith is at times assumed to not have one.

As someone who now identifies as gender queer, Vanags-Smith has seen a noticeable shift in the way her sexual identity has been perceived.

“I think if you’re femme you’re hyper sexualised, and if you don’t fit the stereotypical model of femininity you’re invisible,” she said.

“I’ve had the lived experience of being gender queer for about two years and I’m viewed by many men as being sexless, or as being an asexual creature.

“I think there’s also this idea that two people that have vulvas can’t really have sex because there’s no penetration involved, so men see women sleeping with each other as entertainment for them.”

The desexualisation and dismissal of masc-presenting or gender queer women can also lead to homophobic views around Vanags-Smith’s sexual identity and her relationships with other women.

“I think when I was more femme-presenting people didn’t take it as seriously, but now my relationships often get pushed into a more heterosexual lens, which isn’t the case at all – after three or four months at a job I had, I had to break it to my boss that I wasn’t in fact a man,” she said.

“It can definitely erase the queerness of my relationships.

“People just assume I must be the one that uses the strap on, when one: that’s none of their business and two: that isn’t the case at all.”

Vanags-Smith has also found that heterosexual men will treat her as ‘one of the guys’ and attempt to engage her in a sexist conversation.

“Men will come up to me, point out a particular woman and say, ‘she’s got a great ass mate,’” she said.

“I know how awful that can make someone feel, especially a same-sex attracted woman.

“I’ve also had guys calling me love and telling me I just haven’t had a good fuck, and asking me how I have sex.”

As a means to combat this, Vanags-Smith believes sex education in schools needs to become increasingly sex positive.

She also added that sexist attitudes and misogyny are the bedrock of homophobia, transphobia, and whorephobia.

“With same-sex intimate relationships between women, men don’t really fit into that equation,” she said.

“And some see that as affronting.”

Melbourne recently played host to the annual SlutWalk rally, a march developed as a means to protest the slut-shaming and victim-blaming of women around the world, irrespective of gender or sexual identity.

It was created in Canada in 2011 after a police officer said “women should avoid dressing like sluts” if they wanted to avoid being sexually assaulted.

In Melbourne the rally sees speakers with a diverse range of experiences speaking out against misogyny and rape culture, and how it affects women.

Smith believes SlutWalk does well at being as inclusive as it can be, particularly now that the conversation around trans and queer identities has become more prominent.

“When I started going to SlutWalk I wasn’t as out as I am now, and it was through being emerged in the march that I found a community of feminists that understood me,” she said.

“They enabled me to grow into someone I’m very proud of and to be comfortable in my sexuality.”

Vanags-Smith said she loves SlutWalk because it changes people’s opinions of what a sexual assault survivor might look like, to include women of different ages, cultural backgrounds, and sex ual and gender identities.

“It acknowledges that there may be people who are femme and attractive, but there may be women who don’t fit these archetypes who may also experience sexual assault,” she said.

“The idea that some women are more at risk than others is a massive myth in rape culture that SlutWalk seeks to dismantle.”

Complete Article HERE!


How the penis disappeared from the sex toy



by Hannah Smothers

You’ve seen what a penis looks like. Sure, there are variables that make each one a little different—the world is beautiful that way—but, generally speaking, they all fit a certain mold.

As the male sexual organ, the penis was designed to transport sperm from one body into another. As an added feature, the penis can also summon orgasm in a female partner during this process. But we know this isn’t always the case. While a healthy male organ works pretty well for its intended reproductive purpose, there are some design flaws in terms of maximizing female pleasure.

LILY 2So what if you could redesign the penis, make it a little bit better? Which pieces would you change, and which would you keep? Erasing the need for reproductive functionality, would you scrap the whole thing and start from scratch? In the end, would this magic device—capable of bringing women waves of pleasure—even resemble the penis in its current human form?

Welcome to the world of modern-day vibrators, a place largely devoid of the original pleasure device.

As sex toys have become increasingly sleek and modern—taking cues from the minimalistic designs of like Apple and Ikea—one clear trend has emerged: They no longer look like human penises. In fact, they no longer look human at all—which, according to designers, entrepreneurs, and sex therapists alike, is a very good thing.

Kitschy and grotesque

The first time the American public saw a non-human organ used to stimulate sexual arousal was in the early porn films of the 1920s. Over the previous few decades, small home appliances marketed under the guise of medical necessity (to cure the female ailment of “hysteria“) had become commonplace—kind of like how we now see “personal massagers” advertised in Brookstone. But in the new black-and-white pornos of the ’20s, audiences saw these appliances used for very non-medical purposes.

zini-deux-293x300And once the public was confronted with the idea that these devices could be used strictly for pleasure, the products disappeared from women’s magazines and reputable store shelves.

Vibrators made a second coming about 30 years later, during the sexual revolution of the 1960s. But even though Americans were talking about sexuality more openly than ever before, we still weren’t totally cool with the idea of incorporating these objects in our sex lives. In response, early industry leaders made them as outlandish as possible: Rotating glitter-dicks, two shafts emerging from one testicle-shaped base, rubber duckies that secretly vibrated. We displaced the awkwardness of using machines as sexual aids by turning these aids into novelty objects, or toys.

But there was a big problem with this approach. Since the products were advertised as “novelties,” not health aids, they were held to lower standards than medical devices and other things we put inside our bodies. The cheap toys were unsafe, ugly, and ineffective. And not at all sexy.

“I don’t think anyone has ever said, ‘I want a vibrator that looks like a bunny rabbit and a penis all smashed together,’” Ti Chang, the female co-founder of sex toy and jewelry design company Crave, told me. “I think the sex toy industry has really had a lot of male voices—it’s been men designing products for women, so it tends to be very male anatomy centric. Like, ‘Oh, it’s sex, she wants a big cock, so we’ll just make lots of different colors of cocks, and to make this really silly, we’ll put a little rabbit on it.’”

Companies like Doc Johnson—a leading novelty company for decades, notorious for its line of Zini DonutRealistic Cocks—offer a good example of the “she wants a big cock” mentality that dominated the industry during the late-20th century. Robert Rheaume, the president of high-end sex toy company JimmyJane, charmingly described these hyper-realistic dildos as the kind of severed penis you’d get if “there was an Orc from Lord of the Rings walking around, and they cut his penis off.”

He also argued, by nature of them being just so grotesque, they’re not very sex-positive. He put it to me this way: “Let’s say you and I are well into our sexual relationship, and I pull out this giant, Doc Johnson, 15-inch cock,” Rheaume said. “You might be like, WOAH, where’s that going? Get out of my apartment right now, I’m leaving—call me a taxi, call an Uber. It’s just intimidating and scary for some people.”

Kitschy, intimidating, grotesque—all are terms you could use to describe the sex toy market up until the early 2000s. The poor designs, cheap rubbers and plastics, and incredibly dick-centric domain of products presented itself as an untapped valley of junk, just waiting for a messiah. This is what Ethan Imboden, the founder of JimmyJane, realized upon walking into an Adult Novelty Manufacturers Expo a little more than a decade ago.

“As soon as I saw past the fact that in front of me happened to be two penises fused together at the base, I realized that I was looking at the only category of consumer product that had yet to be touched by design,” Imboden said in his 2012 Atlantic profile. Coming from an industrial design background, and lacking the desire to manufacture what he saw as landfill products, he left his job designing everyday consumer products to launch JimmyJane—a sex toy company that would put safety, design, and sex-positivity first. Around this time, a small, luxury intimate toy company in Sweden called LELO started doing the exact same thing.

post-phalic 01The kitschy sex toy industry was primed for a big change, and companies like JimmyJane and LELO were ready to usher it in.

Disrupting the dick

Skeuomorphism is a concept in technological design that describes our tendency to retain tactile aspects of the physical world as we move more of our lives onto screens. At Apple, for example, skeuomorphic design was thought to ease the transition from the real to the virtual. Turning a page on your Mac or iPhone would closely resemble turning a page in a real notebook, paper sounds included. If you can recreate the physical aspects of a very familiar, tactile world in the flat, virtual reality of an operating system, designers have long believed, maybe more people will feel comfortable using the product.

In sex toy design, this has translated into manufacturing dismembered penises and inventing crevices meant to resemble human vaginas and mouths. But why—if women and couples are looking for something more than their own, very real human parts—would they want a plastic knock-off of those same parts in bed? Just as some people argue that retaining archaic, physical traits of notepads on our iPhones is unnecessary, companies like JimmyJane and LELO saw retaining the original design of human organs as unnecessary and outdated.

Of course, there will probably always be a market for straight-up dildos—which are different from vibrators—and which, by nature of their intended internal purpose, must resemble a human penis. But female-oriented vibrators allow more room for innovation.

With this in mind, JimmyJane and LELO’s emphasis on design, coupled with major tech advances of the early 2000s, allowed these pioneering sex companies to essentially reinvent the penis. “Technology drives the industry—it’s tech, tech, tech,” Patti Britton, a clinical sexologist in southern California, told me. “Everyone’s going for the faster, the most options for control, as well as these really unusual and really sophisticated designs.”post-phalic 02

Those sophisticated designs are now pretty commonplace, and they look nothing like human parts. The design shift comes as a result of technological advances, yes, but also reflects a pretty significant ideological shift. Vaginal penetration, as we now know, isn’t necessarily the key to female orgasm, and penises aren’t naturally shaped to stimulate the elusive G-spot. Skeuomorphism started disappearing from the industry, and the dick was reinvented—and ultimately displaced.

Luxury investments

When sex toys start looking less like severed organs, it gets easier for consumers to take them seriously. And when consumers start to take them seriously, it opens up room for a luxury class of sex toys—something that LELO and JimmyJane, especially, have capitalized on. Most of LELO’s products start at more than $120, though the company also boasts a 24-karat gold plated vibrator for $15,000. As Steve Thomson, LELO’s global marketing manager, told me, creating toys that last a lifetime, like a nice espresso maker or television, is “a way of challenging assumptions about the sex toy market as a whole.”

“There’s always going to be a place for novelty goods and phallic-shaped items,” Thomson said. “But I don’t believe that’s the future of sex toys in any way. People are moving away from the assumption that it’s purely a substitute for a partner.”

post-phalic 03To Thomson, as well as industry leaders at JimmyJane, Crave, and the numerous other companies that have joined the modern sex toy craze, the future of sex toys is in making objects that fit easily into a consumer’s everyday life. That’s why, as technology improves, we see things like app-controlled panty vibes and vibrators equipped with memory that will store your favorite sexual patterns.

Along with loosening cultural values around discussing sex—almost everyone I interviewed cited the Fifty Shades of Grey franchise as a major breakthrough—the shift in toy design has transformed the industry from a $1.3 billion a year industry to a $15 billion a year industry in revenue alone. “If it’s okay for the modern mom to have dialogue about Fifty Shades of Grey, sexuality and masturbation, I think it gives us complete permission to have these conversations and to make these products available,” Rheaume said.

He’s not wrong. Research shows that not only are more women using toys, they’re owning up to using more toys. Consumers are literally taking their orgasms into their own hands, and they’re commonly paying upwards of $150 to do so. Is it worth it to buy a vibrator that costs a bit more than something you might find at your neighborhood adult novelty shop if it means it’ll last longer and isn’t toxic to your body? Absolutely.

But not everyone can afford it, and while some products come with a money-back, orgasm guarantee—they don’t always work as advertised. Has design for the sake of being beautiful, and innovation for the sake of being advanced, displaced the actual functionality of the vibrator?

That’s what was bothering Janet Lieberman, a mechanical engineering grad from MIT and enthusiastic sex toy user. Facing repeated disappointment in the toys she bought, Lieberman realized she was in a unique position to utilize her expertise to make things better. The technology was good, but she saw it going in the wrong direction. There was a sort of machismo attitude slipping into products designed for women—who cares if your device can track your orgasms, give you Bluetooth feedback, and looks like modern art if it doesnt work?

Now, as co-founder and lead engineer for the New York-based sex toy company Dame, she’s ushering in the newest wave—and quite likely the future—of sex toy design.

Women come first

One of the big problems with the sex toy industry is how male-driven and controlled it’s been throughout most of its history. Sure, the men at LELO and JimmyJane have women’s desires in mind—both Thomson and Rheaume told me about the extensive research measures their companies take when designing new products. JimmyJane, for example, relied on data about average labia size from the renowned Kinsey Institute when creating its new Form 5 vibrator, which is designed to simultaneously stimulate a woman’s labia and clitoris.

And to make sure the products hitting the market are truly effective, the leading companies also rely on demo communities—women who test new prototypes and provide detailed feedback. But, as Lieberman argues, there’s a difference between running a product by a demo audience and having a woman—the target consumer of the product—involved each step of the way.

And so, it’s becoming increasingly common to see women-run sex toy companies, or to see women involved in the design and engineering process, according to industry insiders. “If they’re products for women, you kind of want women everywhere in the process so they’re making the right priorities,” Lieberman told me.

A female designer and engineer, for example, might know right off the bat whether something is going to work. It’s not that men don’t take all the important components into consideration—after all, some of these products are used mutually between partners—it’s just that women are more likely to understand the various nuances in their own anatomies, and take those into consideration in the engineering process.

While enabling sex toys to track activity and communicate long distance via the internet—both features on the newest models—is cool, Lieberman and Crave’s Chang both stressed a personal mission to deliver what sex toys have long promised: really fantastic orgasms.

“Having an orgasm is like a birth right, you should have it!” Chang said, in a sentiment famously voiced by Nicki Minaj and, more recently, Amy Schumer. In her process at Crave—which steers clear of trying to mimic anything anatomical—function always comes first.

Lieberman and her business partner, Alex Fine, took a similar approach when building Dame’s first product, a couple’s vibe called Eva. “I wouldn’t say that one of our primary goals in designing this was that we wanted it to be beautiful,” Lieberman said of the device, which resembles a futuristic beetle. “We wanted it to be accessible, but we put function ahead of form.”

They also wanted to make sure the cost wasn’t prohibitive—a sex toy that’s too expensive can actually detract from sex, she argues. Eva sells for $105, a price-point Lieberman attributes mainly to the device’s high-quality silicone and the rigorous research and design process that went into it. Lieberman likens the Eva to a pair of really good headphones: You can hear the music, it sounds incredible, but you aren’t super aware of the fact that there are two small speakers in your ears.

Lieberman acknowledges that before sex toy designers could think about getting back to the core purpose of the industry, consumers needed to be introduced to beautiful, high-end luxury products. But the next wave of sex toys will likely follow her function-over-form philosophy—and encourage an even bigger audience to come.<

So, are we moving toward a world where penises, and human sex organs, are obsolete? Of course not. We’re just moving toward one where we can do better than what the average human body has to offer. As Patti Britton, a certifiable expert in all things sex, put it, there will always be an element of humanity that can’t be captured by even the most elaborate of sex toys.

“We’re still human beings—we’re skin and bone and flesh and energy,” Britton told me. “So far we really haven’t matched that one in the lab, we may one day. But I think, overall, humans will want to be with humans. That’s how we’re wired.”

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