Posts Tagged ‘vibrators’

Review: Love Bump, aka Shilo’s Balls by New York Toy Collective

November 11, 2013  |  reviews  |  1 Comment

I have long ranted and raved about Shilo, the pack and play dildo by New York Toy Collective, but I haven’t much mentioned Shilo’s Balls, offically called the Love Bump.

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I had my hesitations about the Love Bump. It’s kind of odd to be able to add and remove the balls from the dick, kind of … disembodies them in a way that is weird. I have had mixed feelings about balls in general, through my 15+ years (!!) of using a strap on for sex. In the beginning, I was often shamed by my partners for wanting dicks with balls, or for wanting anything that looked realistic. It was deemed “not lesbian enough” and only very non-realistic looking dicks were approved in that relationship.

Now, there is nothing wrong with wanting a dick that doesn’t look realistic. If that’s what you want, I totally support that. But in my book, it’s not okay to shame someone for wanting something that you don’t want. I’d love to encourage us to talk about things in terms of “our personal likes and dislikes” rather than “why someone else liking something that I don’t like is bad and wrong.”

As the trans movements have grown in the recent decades, so too have the options of realistic looking strap on dicks in feminist and queer toy stores. More and more of the dicks are realistically shaped and colored. I’ve heard a lot of folks wanting for less realistic colors lately, actually. (Which is why it’s exciting that NYTC is offering the Shilo in other colors!)

And as the options have shifted, and my own sexuality has evolved, and as I’ve had more permission to be cock-centric and cock-based in my sexual play, I’ve been gravitating more and more toward strap on dicks that roughly match my (white) skin tone, realistic shapes, and balls.

I like how the balls feel. I like the weight. I like how my underwear cups them a little bit, and holds them, cradling. I like having them sucked on and played with. I like how they hang and smack against the person I’m fucking.

Photo from SCW

Photo from SCW

There are a lot of things that make Shilo’s Balls really cool. Like:

1. Detachable.

I’ve never seen “balls sold separately” on a dildo before, so this is new. It seems a little odd and, like I said, disembodied, except when you realize what some of the perks are: a) removing them to have a more discreet package (or adding them to juice up your package, if you want that), and putting them on when you are ready to play; b) turning them upside down when fucking face to face in order to stimulate the person’s clit (assuming that they have a clit that wants to be stimulated in that way); c) adding them to other dildos.

2. Silicone.

Like NYTC’s other products, the balls are silicone and can be sanitized in a 10% bleach/90% water solution, on the top shelf of the dishwasher (with no soap! Assuming that your dishwasher gets hot enough for sanitizing, check your model), or in cock soup boiling water for 5-7 minutes. It’s beautiful quality silicone, too. Mostly matte, not shiny, pliable, soft to the touch, feels good. I think NYTC has some of the best silicone offered.

3. Vibrator.

I have to be honest and tell you that I haven’t played much with the vibrator. I get pretty over-stimulated, so I don’t tend to turn it on. I’d like to try it out a little more, though. You know. For science. And for my thorough review to report to y’all.

4. Juuuust right.

Their size is excellent and matches the Shilo so, so well. They—both Shilo and the balls—feel like a good size for my body, too. Not too small, not too big.

So, in conclusion: Highly recommended if you’re interested in adding some balls to your strap-on play, regardless of whether or not you have the Shilo. It can be a really fun addition for more sensation, for gender play, or for other role play during strap on sexy times.

Pick up The Love Bump from the New York Toy Collective, or at your local awesome feminist sex-positive queer sexuality resource shop.

Review: Lelo Tiani 2

October 3, 2012  |  reviews  |  No Comments

Lelo sent me the Tiani 2 vibrator to explore with over the summer (quite a long time ago, I admit) and I am finally getting around to writing a review of it.

Here’s my problem: I often forget about vibrators. I think it’s easier for me to embody toys that rely on the motion of my body to animate or be used, which, when I think about it, seems really obvious, but I hadn’t really articulated that until recently. Which is why I like cocks and floggers and canes and paddles, bondage if necessary, my hands, my belt.

But. I fuck with my cock a lot, and I really like to get off while I do that, and I seem to never quite have the magic combination of what it takes to get off while fucking with a strap-on, so I have been eager to try some of these newfangled fancy vibrators to see if that would support getting off more easily.

This one, the Tiani 2, is a little U-shape that is made to have the bottom part inserted into the cunt and the top part sitting over someone’s clit. It is marketed primarily to hetero couples as something the woman would wear while being penetrated, and hey maybe that is awesome, I’m not sure. I didn’t try it out that way (yet). (I mean I probably won’t try it out that way in a hetero way, but I could share it with whoever I’m fucking and see if they like that kind of vibration while being penetrated.)

It is covered in silicone, so a quick 10% bleach solution will sterilize it such that it is shareable. By the way.

I’m particularly interested in using it underneath a harness, on myself, to see if that helps me get off. The harness holds it easily in place, and the vibration is lovely. It fits well. I like the stimulation.

But I still didn’t get off very easily. I got really overstimulated really quickly, actually, and then couldn’t quite calm my body down to get off after that. That has been happening to me a lot lately, though, so I don’t think it’s the fault of the toy, though it is frustrating that this isn’t the perfect solution for me to getting off while strapped on.

Your milage may vary, however! I have heard from many folks who strap-on in classes and via email that this is an excellent tool for them, and they like it a lot. If you like vibration stimulation, this might be something worth exploring.

So one of the things marketed about Tiani 2 that is supposed to be amazing is the “SenseMotion™ technology” remote control. Having a remote I can get behind, since that also means someone can wear it under their clothes out in public and someone else can control the stimulation they receive (hot!). But the “SenseMotion” part means that if you tilt the remote, the vibration is supposed to go up or down, which is very inconvenient for, well, lots of things in lots of ways. You can’t really hold it in your hand while you’re fucking, for example, or you’ll mess up the settings that you may’ve just determined were awesome. I also don’t really love vibrators where I have to read the user manual before I know how to use it—I don’t want it to be that complicated! Just give me an on/off button, that’s all I really need. Maybe a few options for speed settings, but that’s enough.

Conclusion: Impressed with the design, great for use under a harness. Remote was awkward. Didn’t blow my mind, but I’ll keep trying it.

The Tiani 2 was sent to me by Lelo to review. Thanks Lelo!

Ask Me Anything: Confidence & Getting Girls Off

May 10, 2011  |  advice  |  7 Comments

Babybutch wrote:

My girlfriend totally knows how to get me off, but I’m nervous that I’m not doing enough for her sexually. We’re very honest with each other, but I worry that she’s not saying anything because she’s afraid of hurting my feelings. What kind of sexual activities would you recommend for the relative novice? What did you “start” with when you were just beginning your sex life with women? I think my biggest problem is (lack of) confidence.

I think you’re probably right, that more than anything it is a lack of confidence. My best advice for building confidence is: a) come up with a small script you can say when you get nervous, where she will reassure you in a way that makes you feel more confident and builds you up (this also might involve a post-fucking script with lots of praise over what you did); b) ask her what she likes, let her direct you until you get it right; c) fake it till you make it—not with the moves, but with the confidence. Just pretending you have confidence will get you pretty far, since usually confidence is actually about a mental state rather than any physical action that you do (or don’t do).

This also kind of depends on how toppy or switchy you are—it’s harder to fake topping, I think, and harder to let her direct you if you’re also trying to build dominance too. But you said she knows how to get you off, so perhaps that isn’t a factor with you two.

You also wrote: “We’re very honest with each other, but I worry …” See if you can work on that. You can flat out tell her, “Hey, I know you said it’s okay, but I have the impression for some reason that maybe you just don’t want to hurt my feelings. Now if you tell me that I’m wrong and just worrying too much, I will believe you, but I also want you to know that I can take it, and I’m interested in getting better at fucking you, so I hope you’ll help me do that.”

And if she tells you that it’s okay, then you can choose to believe her. (She can also choose to change her mind later, and hopefully you won’t take that as an affront, or that she was lying—just accept that sometimes feelings about things change, and that she’s being as honest as she can be right now.)

Another issue at play here might be the difference between how many times she wants to touch you vs how many times she wants to be touched (or how many times you want to be touched vs how many times you want to do the touching). Conventional lesbian wisdom says I-do-you-you-do-me, but that doesn’t necessarily jive with everybody. I, for example, am a top bordering on stone, so I don’t want to be touched, barely ever. Maybe 1 time out of 20. But perhaps you are a five-out-of-ten person, or an eight-out-of-ten person. It sounds like her desires—to be the one who mostly touches you—is driving your sex life right now, but that can (and should) be co-created by the couple to figure out what’s best for both of you. Maybe you want to do more of the touching, but your confidence is holding you back? Maybe she’s not so good at asking for what she wants, or giving you permission to just explore and play? Maybe you are both too goal-oriented here—just because you don’t know how to get her off in two seconds, like perhaps she does to you, doesn’t mean it isn’t still a good idea to touch her, kiss her all over, make her feel good.

And yes, it’s possible that she’s overcompensating because of your nerves, being more of the actor than the receiver because you aren’t stepping up. So if you want to step up, do it. I would TALK to her about it—out of the bedroom, on a random afternoon where you’ve had a lovely morning together and you are both feeling loose and open. Say, “Hey, I know I haven’t been stepping up in the bedroom much, but that’s because I’ve been kind of nervous, but I’d really like to work on that. Can we talk about ways we can play so I can try to build my skills?”

And, speaking of skills. You asked for advice on activities for a sexual novice. Ultimately, it all depends on what you like, and what she likes. There are activities that I think are kind of basic and beginner that other people think are really advanced and edgy, and vice versa. Like cunnilingus—going down on a girl—that is something that I do not do with a new lover, mostly because it’s so intimate (and the whole fluid-bonding thing, since I much prefer it without a dam). It takes time to build up to, for me. But then again I can top someone and be dominant on a first date, spanking or using restraints or pulling hair, which some people would think is a much more advanced thing to do.

But, generally? I think to be a good lover, you should be good at these things: 1) kissing, 2) finger fucking, 3) going down, 4) toys, whichever toys you might be in to, be they vibrators or strap-ons or bondage equipment, 5) quickies.

Of course, there’s plenty more things to get good at—anal, bondage, squirting (if either of you tends to do that—or if you don’t, you can experiment and see if you can make yourselves do it), percussion play, penetration, dirty talk, role play … but generally I think those take longer to learn and experiment with, and if you get those others down, you’ll be golden.

Kissing: check out Violet Blue‘s book Seal it With A Kiss (or her ebook, How To Kiss) if you doubt your abilities. Go slow, make it luscious, make it last, don’t use too much teeth or tongue or saliva. You probably know the basics.

Finger fucking: Practice on yourself. I assume you’re good at getting yourself off already. Watch her masturbate so you can see what she does to turn herself on: does she always have her fingers on her clit, and never go inside? Does she start with a lot of fingers in her cunt and only put her fingers on her clit at the very last second? Does she use tons of force, or very light strokes? Are the strokes long and circling, or slow and jerky? Watch closely. Take notes. Try to duplicate it. Ask her for help—”There?” “No, lower, lower—YES. Harder. Left-right instead of up-down. Like that. Don’t stop!” (And then, whenever a lover says don’t stop, for goddess’ sake, DON’T STOP.)

Going down: Check out Going Down: How to Give Her Mind-Blowing Oral Sex which has some excellent tips, or Violet Blue’s Ultimate Guide. I have a whole class on this, so I have more things to say than I will go into here.

Toys: Consider adding a vibrator to the mix if you are worried that your skills aren’t getting her off. Have her hold it and use it while you fuck her, while you kiss, while you talk dirty in her ear, while your fingers are inside of her. I am not huge on vibrators myself, but I do love the Hitachi, and there are a lot of really beautiful high-quality high-class vibes out there these days. Experiment! Ask your favorite sex toy store for advice, I’m sure they can help. I just noticed that Babeland has 20% off of Jimmyjane vibrators this month—that might be worth looking into, those are beautiful (and expensive).

Quickies: For lots of reasons, this is a great thing to work on, to be able to do as a couple. For one, it says to her, “I can’t wait, I have to have you RIGHT NOW, I don’t care if we only have ten minutes,” which is flattering and good for the bond between you. But also, it is good practice for getting her (or your) arousal up to the point where you can come quickly. It takes skill and practice and enthusiasm! If it was me, trying to get better at something like quickies, I would lay it out directly: “Hey, I really want us to be able to fuck quickly. Are you game to try that? Say, every day this week we’ll try to just work in a really quick fuck somewhere other than the bed (or maybe in the bed, too, if that works). Are you up for that?” And see how she feels about that kind of thing. Maybe daily is too much, but maybe it could be daily over a three-day weekend? Or every other day? I like setting specific guidelines or goals around things like that, because then if we both consent to it, it makes it easier to follow through with. But—your milage may vary, do what feels good for you.

Last but not least, you asked how I got started, when I started fucking women. I went to a women’s erotic workshop, one of those that I have been pimping out lately because I’m now coordinating the workshops, before I’d ever slept with a girl. That most certainly helped.

But, thought I had (quite a bit of) experience fucking guys, I didn’t have much confidence and I wasn’t sure what I was doing. The first girl I slept with hadn’t actually slept with a girl ever either, so in that we kind of figured it out together. I remember very vividly how nervous I was, how we both knew what was coming, but neither were sure how to start or, once we’d started, how to proceed. She actually said, “I don’t know what to do,” which, for me, was the permission slip I needed to just go for it, to follow my instincts and to stop holding back what I wanted to do to her, how I wanted to touch her. When she admitted she didn’t know, well, then, there wasn’t much I could do that would be wrong, would there?

We only dated for about a month and slept together only about three times, partially because my mom was in town for a week and partially because I got my tongue pierced the day after our first date. Um, whoops.

Well—that was longer than I intended, but I hope that is helpful!

And now, what about you all out there? What’s your advice for this babybutch? How do you build confidence in the beginning? What were your early experiences fucking women like?

Review: The G-Ki G-Spot Vibrator

May 23, 2010  |  reviews  |  1 Comment

I don’t usually go for vibrators. I have my magical masturbation toy combination all figured out, and most other vibes pale compared to the Hitachi. I’ve tried lots of the fancy-schmancy ones that are all the rage these days, and I just don’t like them very much. I don’t really want to read a manual to figure out how to use it. I just want an “on” button.

Despite all my reservations, I wanted to give the G-Ki G-Spot Vibrator a try. Mostly because I thought, hey, that might be my two favorite products combined into one!

Turns out that was wishful thinking. It’s very pretty, and sleek, and I can see liking it if I liked vibrators. I like that it has some movement in the neck that can be angled any which way. It’s not one of those vibes like the Sasi which you have to understand complicated astrophysics in order to operate, the controls are pretty simple, but still strong.

Still, my reaction is like my reaction to most vibrators: “eh.” Nothing particularly impressive. Interesting design, perhaps, yes, and enough so that I picked it up to try, but not enough so to pick up again. Unless you’re someone who likes subtler vibration, I’d say save your money for a Hitachi or a Pure Wand.

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The G-Ki G-Spot Vibrator was sent to me from Good Vibrations for review. Check out more sex toys, vibrators, and other lovely items at your local feminist queer sex-positive sex toy shop, or online at goodvibes.com.

Masturbation is Great! (Review: Off With Your Head Hitachi attachment)

September 2, 2009  |  reviews  |  5 Comments

You know what sucks? Not getting off. And I really didn’t realize how often I did (ahem, just about daily) or how comforting it is for me as a nightcap or a pick-me-up until I spent the last six weeks crashing on my own couch or sleeping over at Kristen’s house. Not that Kristen wouldn’t have minded if I had jacked off before bed, I’m sure, but usually it didn’t even occur to me, not the same way that it had become just part of my nighttime routine when I was home alone.

About two weeks ago, Babeland offered up the Off With Your Head attachment for the Hitachi Magic Wand vibrator, one that I’ve been coveting for a while now. When I purchased my Hitachi in college, I was impressed with the vibration, but it really wasn’t specific enough or delicate enough (hah! If there is one thing the Hitachi is not, it is delicate) and I specifically remember a discussion with one of my colleagues at the writing center where I worked where she said, “get the attachment.” And I said, but I don’t really like insertables, I’m not looking for something to go inside … and she said “no, no, I get it, I know, get the attachment, use that on your clit, it’ll be better, I swear, trust me.”

And so I did, and she was right. An attachment like the Gee Whiz silicone attachment or the G-Spotter focuses the vibration and makes the otherwise overpowering vibration of the Hitachi more specific and concentrated, which is precisely what I needed.

So that was what, six years ago? And now that I’m used to the Hitachi, other vibrators seem awfully worthless. I do think there’s a little truth to the rumor that vibrators make you less sensitive – I know my sensitivity changes depending on what kind of sex acts I’ve been frequenting. But there are other factors too – like what time of the month it is, how I feel about my body, how connected I am to myself or to my lover. So the strength of the vibrator not the only contributing factor to my own sensitivity, but it does make a small difference, and the teeny vibrations of other vibes are just not enough. Although, to be fair, they weren’t enough for me even BEFORE I used a Hitachi, which is the major reason why I got a Hitachi to begin with. I’m just not as sensitive as some of you.

But honestly, I have yet to run across another vibrator that would be my go-to as often and as much and as effectively as the Hitachi. All the high-end vibes that are on the market now, well, some of them are very pretty, and seem very fancy and high-tech, but this is the Cadillac, the classic. I don’t need bells and whistles, just vibration.

It was only very recently that I discovered that the white head of the vibrator comes off, and can be replaced by this fabulous silicone one by Vixen. Makes so much sense – it’s sterilizable, so you can share it with someone and sterilize it, and plus it’s got these ridges and bumps and edges that focus the vibration in the same ways that the G-Spotter and Gee Whiz attachments do, but without the protruding part made to actually penetrate. Which stores better in the toolbox I keep next to my bed, with all the things I want easily accessible, and visually I like it better anyway.

So the Off With Your Head attachment arrived, just about the time that my bed was starting to be bedbug-free, and we spent an hour or so getting to know each other – the new Hitachi head, my bed, and me.

I even mentioned it on Twitter:

Getting off that day, I realized I didn’t really remember the last time I did that, which was unusual, and choked me up a little, actually. You know how sometimes you’re so inside of something that you can’t recognize even what a big deal it is? Today I ran across an old post from Havi saying, “Sometimes we can’t notice that we are in pain and sometimes we are so entangled in our own pain and distress that we aren’t able to pay attention to someone else’s pain and distress.” And while I’m sure that’s true, there’s also the aspect – for me – of being so wrapped up in the pain and distress and so focused on getting out of the pain and distress that I don’t even see the kind of pain and distress I am in. I should’ve noticed that things that I do to take care of myself – like yoga and meditation and masturbation – were slipping away from me, but I didn’t really. I gave them lip service, I thought I was keeping up, but I wasn’t, not really.

I hope this can go on my own personal record as something to note, that if I stop doing things like having a masturbation practice, there is probably something wrong.

Oh – I didn’t really mention the fantastic addition to my masturbation collection, but hopefully that’s obvious. The Off With Your Head attachment has become pretty much permanently affixed to my Hitachi.

And yes, I’m using it much more frequently now, and I feel so much fucking better, thank you for asking.

Buy the Off With Your Head attachment for the Hitachi Magic Wand at Babeland, awesome queer and feminist sex-positive sex toy store.

Kristen reviews the Hitachi

August 3, 2009  |  reviews  |  4 Comments

Review written by Kristen.

hitachiI’ve been putting off this review for awhile. Sin asked me for a draft and I said, “Five words: nothing compares to Mr. Sexsmith.” Which is true, but there are occasions where I need to get myself off. So as a substitute, I’d say the Hitachi Magic Wand is adequate but not life-changing.

At first I wanted to use it three or four days in a row, to test the theory that it would numb your clit with repeated use. But that test didn’t happen. The electricity in my subleased bedroom didn’t work for a week – seemingly irrelevant to this review, but it reinforces a basic problem with the Hitachi: it’s not as reliable as my hands, which are available and functioning 24 hours a day.

I’d used a Hitachi before, somewhat warily. As you might, um, already know, I come easily – “You just need a stiff breeze,” a friend joked recently. I like that about myself and I don’t want it to change. I don’t want to be so accustomed to high-power humming on my clit that I can’t get off any other way. That said, the two or three times I’d borrowed Sinclair’s – we’re fluid-bonded, people, it’s ok – I kind of liked it. And by that I mean I came in seconds and wanted to keep going.

But actually owning a Hitachi is different, and I worried it would become the guaranteed-get-me-off machine. I want to be able to get off when it really counts, i.e. when Sinclair’s fucking me. So I used it once, when Sin was out of town, and it, um, worked. I used my fingers first, had a quick orgasm, got myself wet so I’d feel the vibration a little better, and went to town. I found that the first couple of orgasms came easily from the low setting, but I thought I’d try the higher setting to see if I could handle it. Some people find the high setting is too intense, but after the first few times I came from the low setting, I wanted more – and I could handle it just fine.

And then I brought it with me on a trip out of town – and didn’t use it. I think I wanted a more prolonged, less intense orgasm than I felt it could give me – I wanted a long, slow build instead of a burst of pleasure. That’s not to say I couldn’t have a massive orgasm from a Hitachi, given the right conditions (long, hot fantasy on an afternoon by myself; Sin using it on me while I’m tied up and can’t protest). But nothing beats my hands for a solid 45-minute jerkoff session.

Buy the Hitachi Magic Wand at Babeland.

Review: Gee Whiz … the Hitachi Upgrade

January 19, 2009  |  reviews  |  2 Comments

(It’s actually a little challenging to write about vibrators … seems very personal, which is weird, compared to all the rest that I write about. But how I get off in private, alone, is not something I usually share.)

I was in college when I invested in the Hitachi Magic Wand. It is the Grandmother of All Sex Toys, and unless your clit is super super sensitive (in which case the VERY strong vibrations will simply be too much), I recommend one for every toy box.

The first time I brought it home and used it, though, I just couldn’t get the pointed stimulation I was used to or liked. I like the strong vibration, but I still wanted more concentrated focus in … certain spots.

I was complaining about this with some of my fellow Women Studies students, and one friend of mine said, “The attachments are where it’s at. That’s what you’re missing.”

“Huhwhut? But I don’t really want internal penetration …”

“No, no. Use it on your clit. It’ll just be more … gathered attention this way. Trust me.”

I did. She was right.

The Hitachi and the G-spotter attachment (shown left … I guess Babeland doesn’t carry them anymore? I can’t find it on their website) have been my nightcap for many years now.

I’ve seen the other attachments – like the Gee Whiz, silicone, a little fancier, more sculpted – at Babeland ever since, and while I was somewhat curious, I wasn’t sure it would be worth it. They seemed more made for penetration and I didn’t think I wanted that. The

Alright, Babeland: I stand corrected.

The best part about this innocent little attachment is that it’s got this nub on the underside of the cap that is perfectly situated for clit stimulation.

Time will tell if this attachment will stay at the top of my toybox or get buried, but for now, I’m damn excited about it. And considering this review is done, and I have a little time before I have to grab a shower and get going with my day, I think I might just get back into bed. Mmm yeah.

(If you don’t have a Hitachi yet, you can get the Hitachi & Gee Whiz together and save some money.)