Buying your First Sex Toy can be Scary!
I get it:
It’s pretty nerve wracking to get your first sex toy.
Back when I bought my first vibrator, I certainly wish that online shopping was a possible! At 18 years old, I tried so hard not to be embarrassed.
The truth was:
I was SO uncomfortable in the sex shop.
I avoided eye contact with the salesperson and tried to choose the vibrator that gave away the least amount of information about me.
A smaller sized pink jelly vibrator was what I chose and that thing lasted me a few years until I had the courage to go back to another shop and replace it.
I wasn’t a shy teenager at all, but something about being in this store where people can choose devices that get inserted into their genitals and anyone else in that store can see which one you’re choosing, and oh god, I’m remembering how awkward that was!
It gets better. I promise.
Nowadays, I’ve got 15 years of sex shopping under my belt and I don’t blink an eye at having conversations with salespeople about the EXACT product I’m looking for and what exactly I want it to do. I realize, and remember, however, that life wasn’t always like this and many people are totally overwhelmed, embarrassed, and unsure about buying sex toys. This is why I’ve I’m writing this guide.
Let’s face it.
Chances are, many of you will need to be buying a vibrator at some point in your life. Approximately half of women in the US have used a vibrator either alone or with a partner. These women were found to take care of their bodies a little bit better than non-vibrator users in terms of routine breast and genital examinations and also ensuring that they got regular pap tests. So apparently, it’s a healthy hobby to get into!
The Ultimate Guide to Buying your First Sex Toy!
I’m not THAT old and I was buying dildos before googling reviews and product information was a popular thing. When I first started, I literally had no idea what to buy when I went in, I just wanted something to stick in my vagina. I didn’t know anything about lube, other than I probably should get the most fruity and sweet tasting stuff that I could possibly find.
I definitely didn’t know about g-spot or anal (omg!) stimulation.
So, listen up:
You don’t have to be a professional sex toy expert to get off. Everyone gets to be an expert in their own body over time, but it does take time and practice! What this sex toys for beginners guide is for is to help you decide which toy you should try out to help you discover more about what makes you have the best orgasms that you can!
Where do I Buy My First Vibrator?
Honestly, nothing beats walking into a brick and mortar sex store to buy a sex toy. Sometimes it can be very hard to determine length and girth without feeling a toy in your hands.
I get it though:
It can be absolutely intimidating to step foot in some of those adult toy stores. If you’re comfortable walking into the shop and if you feel okay
with talking to the clerk a bit, then go out and buy your first vibrator! You’ll be able to feel, see, smell, and (when it comes to lube) taste what you’re about to buy!
If you’re not comfortable buying sex toys in person, well there’s a whole world of sex shops at your fingertips online. If you live in North America, without a doubt, the most popular and trusted online sex store is Adam&Eve. They average about 1.6 million visits per day. The next largest North American competitor, for example, averages about 1/3 of that business.
I have personally been a customer for 8 years and have had tons of great experiences buying sex toys from them. If you’re not happy or completely satisfied with your product, you can contact them and they’ll make it better through replacement, exchange, or refund.
This is my personal preference.
You will also find that I recommend other online shops such as Lovehoney, GoodVibes, and PinkCherry. Lovehoney is one of the largest online retailers in the UK and PinkCherry is the most popular in Canada.
Now here’s the issue:
Amazon Sexual Wellness is becoming huge nowadays. You can often find retailers selling the same products on Amazon for almost half of the price as the well known online shops. You have to make sure that you’re buying from reputable sellers but there are deals to be found. When I link to Amazon, I try to make sure that it is the product manufacturer that is selling it or that it has a lot of positive reviews to make sure that you’re getting what you think you’re getting.
Sex Toy Delivery?
If you’re living somewhere that it would be absolutely mortifying to receive a dildo-shaped package in the mail, fear not! I don’t think you’ll find any retailer out there these days that doesn’t ship discreetly.
What can you expect?
Depending on what you purchase, you’ll either get a brown box or a grey mailing bag. Will you be able to feel a dick-shaped object in the mailing bag? Not usually because almost all products come in a box. The only way to totally avoid the bag is to buy several items and your delivery will be put into a basic brown box because a box holds more stuff.
Your bag or box will not say:
“Sex Toys” or
“OMG look at this pervert!”
It will look like any other delivery you get. Finally, if you’re still not convinced that you can get a delivery discreetly, Adam&Eve requires your signature for delivery if one item in your delivery is over $149 or your entire order is more than $250.
How Big Should my First Vibrator be?
One of the hard parts about buying a sex toy, particularly your first vibrator or dildo, online, is that it’s really hard to tell how big something will be. Once you’ve experienced inserting a few toys, you’ll get the hang of what size you like. Most dildos and vibrators will be around 5 to 8 inches long for the insertable portion and between 1 and 2 inches wide. You have to remember also that vaginas (if that’s what you have) are remarkably stretchy and adaptable.
For your first vibrator though, this is literally what I taught a younger friend a few years ago:
Let’s pretend that the toy you’re interested in buying is 7″ long and 1.5″ across.
- Take an empty paper towel roll and cut it lengthwise so that the barrel opens up.
- Grab a ruler.
- Re-roll up the paper towel roll and tape it so that the new width is 1.5 inches.
- Cut off the end to make it 7″ long.
What you’ll end up with is a skinnier empty roll of paper towel. Now look at that size. You’ll notice that it’s probably not much thicker than a couple of your own fingers. It’s a stupid arts and crafts project for a snowy Sunday afternoon but I find that it makes it so much easier to see what the actual size will be.
Now look at that 7″ of the paper towel roll? Does that intimidate you? It sure scared me a bit before I was experienced with sex.
Think about it this way though:
You are the one putting this toy in and you get to determine how much goes in. It’s much better to have a toy that is too long and you end up not using the last few inches than to come up a few inches short when you’re edging towards that big orgasm.
You’re not buying shoes here.
What are Toxic Sex Toys and how Should I Avoid Them?
To make it very simple, you will normally want to steer clear of toys that are made of jelly and certain plastics. What you want to avoid is materials that contain phthalates. Phthalates are a softening chemical that is often added to plastics for sex toys. It is commonly found in toys made from jelly, PVC, rubber,and many “realistic skin” materials. The other material that can be added to toys is latex. Latex allergies are relatively common so it’s best to steer clear of it unless you know for certain that you do not have a latex allergy.
Here’s the issue:
This industry is not regulated.
What that means is that manufacturer’s can claim one thing, and do the complete opposite. This is why it’s smart to stick with companies that have a good track record of safety and transparency.
What you want to look for is materials like silicone for your sex toy. Silicone is good for many reasons.
- It’s non-porous (cannot trap microscopic bacteria, viruses, fungi etc.)
- It can be boiled or otherwise sterilized.
- Does not contain phthalates or latex
- Is not easily damaged.
- Scent free
Glass, stainless steel, and wood are other materials that are ideal for sex toys. Both have the same properties as silicone but are hard instead of soft. ABS plastic is also a hard, phthalate-free plastic that is often found in vibrator handles and bullet vibrators.
Prevalence and Characteristics of Vibrator Use by Women in the United States: Results from a Nationally Representative Study. 2009. The Journal of Sexual Medicine. Jul;6(7):1857-66. DOI: 10.1111/j.1743-6109.2009.01318.x