In the tradition of all great sex-related holidays, November 4 is
National Sex Toy Day. In the same vein that we celebrate National Sex Day on June 9 (get it? 6/9), National Masturbation Month in May, and Anal Pleasure Month in August, November 4 is that one day a year we give thanks to the sex toys in our lives. Which, if your favorite toys are all charged up and ready to go, is very easy to do.
No matter who you are, what you do, or what you're into, there is a
sex toy out there for you. I'd go so far as to say that sex toys make our lives better. Not just because they give us pleasure and orgasms have been proven to be beneficial to our physical and mental health, but because they allow us to understand our bodies in a deeper way. In a culture that prefers to be all hush-hush when it comes to talking about sex, defying this spoon-fed societal "norm" and embracing our sexuality is, simply, badass.
As a sex writer, an advocate for pleasure, and someone who firmly believes that human sexuality is truly beautiful, I took on the very important task of trying many,
many sex toys this year. In 2018, I reviewed 43 sex toys and narrowed it down to my top nine.
This year, although I didn't try every sex toy that was sent my way, I'd say I tried somewhere between 60 and 70. Some were cool, some were forgettable, some I couldn't even figure out how to turn on — or off, for that matter, and some blew my mind. 2019 saw a lot of sex toys released, but here are 13 that won my heart.
Although I'm not a big fan jewelry, in general, I'm a huge fan of rings. I even buy a ring in every country or international city I travel to. So when I saw that Unbound, which I'm also a huge fan of, created a ring — Palma — that doubled as a vibrator, I briefly thought I was hallucinating or had misread the press release. But nope!
Not only is Palma beautiful (although admittedly a little heavier than any other ring I own), but its five modes of vibrations are strong! Stronger than you'd expect from something of such a size.
While I did wear it on a date and it came in handy (pun!), where Palma really won points was with my friends who were obsessed with it and ended up buying one of their own. And, of course, with me. It's also an amazing conversation starter.
I was a little late to the party when it came to
Le Wand's Chrome Collection, but better late than never. As a huge fan of Alicia Sinclair, the founder and CEO of COTR, Inc, which is the brainchild behind Le Wand, as well as b-Vibe, and The Cowgirl, I went into Le Wand Deux knowing it was likely to be love at first, well, buzz. As usual, Le Wand didn't disappoint.
“Our brain is such a crucial tool when it comes to if/how you masturbate, so a positive perception of pleasure itself can help your body follow suit,” Sinclair tells Bustle. “This is why I feel so passionately that sex toys made
by women for women have a huge impact on how women internalize and validate their own pleasure.” This is also why I love Alicia and her products.
As someone with a clitoris, I found that the vibrations were perfect, as the little vibrating ears gave my clit a well-deserved hug. It's also great for those who love to stimulate their vulva, before making their way up to the clitoris.
And it's stunning. As a Libra, I'm like a damn magpie when it comes to beautiful, shiny things, so for me Le Wand Deux has it all.
In celebration of National Sex Toy Day, you can score 25% off all b-Vibe vibrating plugs and all Le Wand products (bundles excluded) for 24 hours only (ends on Tuesday 12am ET.) Pop in the code
SEXTOYDAY19 at checkout and you're good to go.
Satisfyer Partner Multifun 3
As is the case with some sex toys, when this bad boy showed up and I saw the back of the box (NSFW) and all the ways you can use it, I whispered, "WTF." With a rotatable head (those two arms), three motors, 10 vibration settings that lead to a total of 100 vibration combos, and boasting 33 different ways to use it, I'd be lying if I said I wasn't intimidated at first. I'd also be lying if I said I didn't immediately text my favorite f*ck buddy of the summer to come over and try it with me.
While I didn't count all the ways we used the Satisfyer Partner Multifun 3, we definitely got creative with it. From my vulva and clitoris, to his penis, balls, perineum — and a few other very pleasurable places I don't need to recap, this toy was intense. It's the type of toy you want to use when you have the energy and stamina to make a whole night of it.
Ever since I
first tried the Womanizer when it launched five years ago, I've been a fan. (Although, admittedly, I'm still wishing they'll change the name.) But, that aside, when it comes to clitoral stimulation it always, and I mean always, delivers. And considering 75% of people with vulvas need clitoral stimulation to orgasm, this is a great thing.
Then the DUO came way.
Not only was I about to enjoy the Pleasure Air technology that I'd become such a fan of, but the DUO — hence the name — offered something more: G-spot stimulation AT THE SAME TIME.
Although I've only experienced the
elusive vaginal orgasm once in my life (but, man oh man, do I keep trying), I still really love G-spot stimulation. Especially when it's paired with clitoral stimulation. Which basically means, this toy had everything for me. I even loved it so much I bought it for two of my friends — both of whom actually had their first squirting experience because of the DUO. I, on the other hand, like the vaginal orgasm, keeping trying to squirt. One of these days I'll nail it.
Lack of squirting on my end aside, DUO is fantastic and has become one of my staples
Doc Johnson Japanese Style Bondage Cuffs
While I'd never consider myself vanilla, I will say that I'm definitely not into
the BDSM scene as deeply as some of my friends. So, for me, the Japanese style cuffs were a step up from the scarves I usually use and they definitely made me feel like I was being kinkier than I normally am. Because it's a soft cotton rope, the cuffs are comfortable and you don't have to worry about them leaving marks on your wrists — if that's a concern for you.
Whether your hands are cuffed over you head, your ankles are cuffed to your wrists, or wrists and ankles are cuffed to the bed posts, it's definitely a lot of fun. I actually suggest getting two sets, so your ankles — or your partner's ankles — don't feel ignored when the wrists get all the attention.
Also, in honor of National Sex Toy Day, Doc Johnson will be offering 30% off their
top-selling products all day November 4. One of those products includes the silicone version of these cuffs!
Despite the fact that I write openly about my sex life, I don't have an exhibitionist bone in my entire body. For me, there is no thrill in possibly getting caught having sex. But where I do find quite a bit of thrill is in having a secret.
From the very first time I got my hands on a We-Vibe product back in 2014 and handed over the controls (We-Connect app) to my husband, I've been a sucker for, well, dirty little secrets.
While the toy we tried then in 2014 was the
We-Vibe Plus 4, this time around my current partner and I tried the Moxie —and whoa nelly. Although I never had an issue with the fit of the We-Vibe Plus, I can say, hands down, the Moxie fit like a glove. With a magnet on the underside of my underwear and the actual vibrating part of the toy inside my underwear, it felt far more secure. With my partner at the helm, either across the bar, walking across the street from me, or giving me a buzz instead of actually using the door the bell to let me know he arrived, we had a lot of fun.
Because I do enjoy a bit of restraint in my sex life (as evidenced by those charming Japanese bonding cuffs above), I still have never seen myself as a ball gag person. So much so that I've been incorrectly calling "ball gags" "gag balls" up until like six months ago — no joke.
But Bit by Unbound, although confirming I'm still probably not a "gag ball" person, did confirm that there's something super sexy about being quiet for a change. I mean, why should I be the one doing all
the dirty talking all the time anyway?
If you've flirted with the idea of having your ability to talk taken away during sex, I highly recommend Bit. It also has a nice texture, so you know it's not messing up your enamel, which was a concern for me. But maybe that's only something I worry about when it comes to things I put in my mouth.
When it comes to butt stuff, I have to be in the mood. While I declared
b-Vibe Cinco Anal Beads the best toy to try in June of 2018 and think their Rimming Plug 2 is out of this world, I'm probably not as adventurous about anal toys as my articles might suggest.
But when Satisfyer, a sex toy brand that made a name for itself as sort of the anti-vibrator with its pressure wave stimulation, created anal plugs, I was all for it. I mean look at those colors!
The beautifully shaped trio are sold together and each one offers a different sensation. They're also not too overwhelming or intense for those who are still a little iffy about anal play, which is definitely a plus for some people. So grab the lube and make a go of it with these beauties.
Honestly, I've never met a
Dame Products toy that I didn't like, or rather love immediately. So, anyone who's read my sex toy lists before, know it's not truly complete without the appearance of Dame Products. Here's the truth: my standards in sex toys are very high.
"We started from the idea of an ergonomic pencil and then realized that the soft triangular shape had other benefits for getting into nooks and crannies, while still being big enough for a powerful motor," Janet Lieberman, founder and CTO/CPO, told Bustle in a previous article. "
Kip is one of our most exploratory products — the flutter tip, curved cup, and rounded shaft edges all give different sensations, and the way the product can be held many different ways encourages trying different uses."
Although Kip was marketed as a lipstick vibrator, making it great for masturbation, both because of the shape Lieberman mentions against the clitoris and how it felt in my hand (ergonomically speaking), I found it delivered in other ways, too. One night a lover (I'm totally bringing that term back) inserted Kip inside me. He angled it in such a way that the flexible tip was vibrating agains my G-spot while he gave me oral sex.
As someone who has struggled to get comfortable when it comes to
receiving oral sex, this technique really hit the spot. Not only was I happy camper, to say the least, but I had to restrain myself from asking him to move in with me and never leave my side again as I climaxed.
Similar to Le Wand Deux, I already knew I was in for a treat. Not just because it's a Le Wand product, but because the shape is very similar to
Dame Product's Pom which I was obsessed with last year.
Point fit in the palm of my hand perfectly with three delightful wavy ridges that made my vulva and clit very happy. Also, because of its size, in that it feels all-encompassing like it's cradling my entire vulva (because it was!), there's a cozy aspect to it like it belongs there. I'm not saying I could wear it in my undies all day or anything, but I'm also not saying I wouldn't, either.
Like Womanizer, We-Vibe has embraced Pleasure Air technology and that's a good thing. While most of We-Vibe's products are created for use by couples (but can still be used solo too!), Melt is the first product that's more geared to solo play for those with clits. Although, let's be honest, any toy can be used in a couples (or more) sexual scenario.
As I would tell anyone who has a sex toy with Pleasure Air technology, if you don't want people to hear you using it, either live alone, turn up the Netflix, or put on some white noise. While the sound isn't
loud, per se, it's definitely not a toy that whispers. But it feels so good, so who cares?
Before I get into anything technical about the
Iroha Temari Kaze, the first thing I have to point out is how lovely it is. As we speak, it's currently sitting on my desk next to trinkets I've collected in my travels and photos of friends.
Not only is it lovely, but it's simple too. It has one button, four speeds, two patterns, is waterproof, quiet, and, frankly, I've found that its vibrations are great for not just my vulva region, but my back and neck too. It's just wonderful.
Although it's currently only available in the UK and EU — fantastic news for all our international readers — you can still have a friend buy it there and ship it to the States. Because that's what good friends do.
Starlet, both the original and now 2, remain in the top five sex toys I recommend to people who are sex toy newbies. Not only does it always deliver, especially for those who need
clitoral stimulation to climax, but both the size and price are reasonable — two important factors for people who are new to sex toys. In fact, it was actually created for newbies
“The Starlet is a perfect option for those who are brand
new to sex toy play," Johanna Rief, head of communications at Womanizer, told Bustle in a previous article. "Its simple design makes it more discreet than other vibrators on the market. And because it’s petite in size, it doesn’t overwhelm sex toy 'newbies.'"
See? Newbies have to start somewhere and the Starlet is a great place for that.
There you have it! The 13 best sex toys of 2019 (so far!), in my humble opinion. But remember: just because I love something or your BFF loves something doesn't mean you will too. Sex toys, like many things, can be a trial and error process — especially if you've yet to figure out what gets you off. You can help remedy that
with regular masturbation and today, being National Sex Toy Day, is a great day to do just that. Sources: Alicia Sinclair, the founder and CEO of COTR, Inc Janet Lieberman, founder and CTO/CPO Johanna Rief, head of communications at Womanizer