‘Tis the Season to Be Merry

Looking for Holiday gifts that will add some extra joy for getting smart and sexy between the sheets?

The holidays are a time to gather together; to spend with friends, family, your partner of ___ months/years or that new boo that you are kinda feelin’ hella tough. The holidays are a reason to celebrate and even share gifts of appreciation and love. Some of those gifts may be the latest cool gadgets to socks or even something special to share after a sweet kiss under the mistletoe. At the end of the day if you are thinking of buying something sexy to either give to your partner, boo or whatever sweet name you may have for someone you share intimate relationships with don’t be shy about it. Remember that pleasure is a right and it’s always good to share the gift of pleasure even if that gift is intended for you. Self-care is vital and exploring your pleasure points or someone else’s is a self-care practice that can help relax and even stimulate all your senses.

Before you start exploring and purchasing let’s review some of the basics…
Introducing a sex toy to the bedroom can add some variety to some people’s sexual practices. When using toys it is always important to talk to your partner and know what you are comfortable with, how much penetration does someone want, pace, texture, width of ridges…because toys don’t have feelings so talking to your partner ensures that no one gets hurt. Sanitation is always key when introducing sex toys as well and lube is always a good friend to have to accompany the sex toys.

Materials:
Sex toys are made of various materials from latex to silicone to glass or metal. Often times some people explore with non-traditional sex toys like fruits or vegetables, hair brush handles… something important to know about the material of your sex toy before play time is porous or nonporous.

POROUS NONPOROUS
Materials: jelly rubber, latex, vinyl, wood, fruits, vegetables. Materials: silicone, hard plastic, acryic, glass, metal.
Pros: usually less expensive, less firm texture which some people consider to be more “flesh-like” Pros: Smaller in size, Easy to clean and sanitized with hot boiling water. Firmer texture is sometimes preferred by some people.
Cons: cannot be completely cleaned. Some jelly rubbers contain phthalates, a plasticizer that has shown to have health concerns for some people. Jelly rubber items are also sometimes colored or scented in ways that may be irritating or allergic-reactive for some people. Cons: The firmer texture may be less preferred by some who prefer the less firm “fleshy texture” of more porous materials.Cannot use silicon lube with silicone toys.

Butt plugs are meant to be put in the rectum and can stay in place on their own. It again is very important that all anal toys have flared ends to ensure that the toy does not get stuck / “lost” inside the anus. Some people enjoy movement with the butt plugs once they are put inside the rectum – this movement can vary in speed and angle. Other people simply enjoy the fullness that butt plugs create once the butt plug is inserted and may just enjoy the butt plugs being kept in place.

Anal beads classically are a series of small balls connected by string. These are inserted into the rectum and pulled out (many people prefer they be pulled out slowly, to enjoy the sensation). Many of these are very poorly-made, with sharp edges on the plastic balls and with porous, impossible to clean string. Some companies manufacture plastic or silicone anal beads that have a stem, rather than a string, connecting the balls. These may be much easier to clean.

Cock Rings can be used for extra decoration and also to increase the strength of an erection. Cock rings help to keep blood in the penis leading to a longer erection. Cock rings come in a variety of materials: stretchy rubber, silicone, leather or metal. For beginner cock ring users it is advised to experiment first with cock rings that can be stretched on or off or cock rings that can be snapped or unsnapped to remove before jumping into solid rings.

Styles:
Dildos are meant to be inserted in vaginas but can be used anally as well. Although most people use dildos for internal play they can be used for external stimulation as well. There are both “representational dildos” – those that look like penises – and “nonrepresentational dildos,” which come in a variety of shapes such as fists, dolphins, etc.

You may see two-headed dildos which sometimes can be viewed and used as the “strapless dildo.” Two-headed dildos are often used without a harness in porn films adding to their pleasurable allure. However, many people find that the “strapless dildo” is often too much work and leaves many individuals feeling unsatisfied because the strapless double dildo can be hard to control and maneuver without it falling out. Using a harness alleviates the problems of having the dildo move out of place at inopportune times and gives partners more control when experimenting with different thrusts, strokes or movements at various speeds and depths. If both partners enjoy penetration the two-headed dildo is a toy for the dual penetrative experience.

Dildos – can be used for individual pleasure and / with partners. Dildos often times have flat bases that are meant to be held or worn in a harness, or they can have a second head so that penetration can occur for both partners simultaneously. Harness dildos can be worn around the hips, as well as a harness that can attach to legs or arms.

Vibrators – come in many different shapes, sizes, and can be used for either internal vaginal penetration or external stimulation of the vulva or clitoris. The vulva and clitoris often respond to vibration so external stimulation with vibrators can be a great gift especially when there are fun small discreet external vibrators on the market like those that look like lipstick cases. The vibrators can hit a variety of speeds and oftentimes the plug-in external vibrators can lead to more powerful sensations.

G Spot Stimulators – To locate the G-Spot insert a finger an inch or two into the vagina and press up towards the belly button – this area is the g spot and for some people can be a pleasurable area for stimulation. For some people the G Spot responds to more fullness and pressure on the area and g spot stimulators which are curved dildos or vibrators are meant to hit this area inside of the vagina and incite warm wonderful sensations.

Anal Toys – As mentioned before dildos can be used for anal play however most dildos can over-stimulate or be uncomfortable for most people during anal play so looking for dildos that are smaller, smooth and slightly curved is advised. However, if dildos do not work for you there are other great toys for anal play. With all anal toys it is important that all sex toys have a flared base to prevent the toy from being “lost” within the anus. This is crucial since the anus does not have an ending point like the vagina does with the cervix.

Want the Naked Truth About Sex Toys? Check out Sex Toy Reviews at Visit Autostraddle.com

Fun Gift Guides to Explore
1. Holiday Gift Guide: The Perfect Sex Toys for You and Your Partner

2. 21 Lustworthy Gifts for a Sexy Holiday Season

3. The 13 Best Sex Toys for Your Most Adventurous Friends (Or Yourself)

4. Sexy Holiday Gift Guide from Good Vibes

In Los Angeles and looking for a store to explore? Check out The Pleasure Chest on Santa Monica Blvd – where staff members are always willing to give non-judgmental, unbiased information to customers.

The Pleasure Chest
7733 Santa Monica Blvd West Hollywood, CA 90046
323.650.1022
Open to 12 am daily

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