About SEX
All kinds of Toys


Sex aids or sex toys devices made to vary or enhance pleasure during sexual activity. They are used primarily on the genitals or around the genitals, but some can be used on other parts of the body as well. People use them when they are on their own or with partners. On the whole, people who use sex aids do not use them every single time they engage in sex nor do they always use the same aid on each occasion.

The list of sex aids is a long one. They are usually sold in special erotica shops or through mail order catalogues. Some of the more common ones include the following:

toy_01.jpg (4599 bytes)Vibrators. Vibrators are electrical machines powered by batteries or plugged into electrical outlets. They come in different sizes and shapes; some have variable speed controls to allow the user to personalize the intensity of the stimulation.

The more popular kinds of personal vibrators are battery powered, cylindrical or penis shaped in different diameters and lengths, and sometimes come with attachments for different parts of the body.

The sexual sensations produced by a vibrator can be both intense and rapidly felt. Vibrators must be used gently on sensitive body tissue. Some people use a towel between the skin and the vibrator to cut down on the intensity of the sensation. Using a water-based lubricant can also make a vibrator more comfortable and stimulating.

Vibrators, especially AC-powered models, are never to be used in or with water, and battery powered models may overheat if used for extended periods of time.

Ben Wa Balls. This device, which originated in the orient, consists of a set of two metal balls. One is solid and is placed in the vagina near the cervix; the other one is partially filled with mercury and is also placed in the vagina, near the first one. Any movement causes the mercury filled ball to hit the deeper one, spreading vibrations through the vaginal area. Women primarily use them on their own, but they can also be incorporated into sexual activity with a partner.

Cock Rings. A cock ring is a metal, leather, or rubber ring-shaped device, usually from 1 1/2 to 2 inches in diameter. The testicles and the erect penis are slipped through the ring, which fits tightly, putting pressure on the dorsal vein of the penis. The idea is that the cock ring will keep the blood that has engorged the penis from flowing out. The man will therefore retain his erection longer and, theoretically, be able to prolong his sexual activity. Some men also wear cock rings when they want their genitals to look larger under their pants. Proper fit is important so that the penis and testicles do not get bruised. Caution is needed not to wear the rings too tightly or for an extended period of time, since they act as a tourniquet limiting blood flow and can cause severe damage to the genitals.

Erotic Creams, Lotions and Oils. These come in various scents and flavors and are primarily designed to make caressing and massage more sensuous, though some are used as lubricants for intercourse. The sensations and scents of creams, lotions and oils on the skin can be arousing for some people. The flavor of the cream or oil is often important for couples who want to have oral sex or like to kiss their partner's body all over.

French Ticklers. French ticklers are devices that fit over the penis and are designed to tickle and increase sensation in the vagina during intercourse. These devices are pre-shaped (unlike condoms, which come rolled up) and their surfaces are equipped with ridges and small probes. French ticklers can be reused after thorough washing. It is important to note that while they fit over the penis in a fashion similar to condoms, they are NOT birth control devices

Leather Garments and Accessories. Leather has a distinctly erotic appeal for some people. It is a common element in sadomasochistic (S&M) fantasies used to express dominance . Some people get excited if threatened by someone who is clothed in leather or who is using leather implements. The dominant person (sadist) in these scenarios also usually derives pleasure from the wearing or use of leather. Leather is also used in bondage and discipline (B&D) in the form of harnesses or straps.

Masturbators. These are devices with soft, usually latex sleeves, often designed to resemble the female vagina, into which a man can place his erect penis. If this sexual aid is an electrically or battery powered model, it can be controlled by the user to operate at varying desired speeds to create a rhythmic motion, stimulating the man to reach orgasm and ejaculate.

Penis Extenders. A penis extender is a hollow penis-shaped device that is placed over the end of the penis to make it seem larger. Usually it is held in place by straps or a harness that goes around the waist.

The use of sex aids and sex toys is not readily accepted by all. For the most part sex toys are designed solely to increase pleasure. Because our society is in conflict over the rightness of sexual pleasure, it is not surprising that sex toys are subject to numerous myths and controversies. Some of the more common misconceptions are: that the use of sexual aids is a sign of being a pervert; that using sexual devices in a relationship is a sign that the relationship is not going well; people who use sexual aids become addicted to them; and homosexuals use sex aids more that heterosexuals do. None of these, of course, is true.

Nonetheless, many people feel ambivalent about using sex aids. They may feel that using mechanical devices during intimate moments is unnatural, depersonalizing or replacing their partner. While these concerns may have merit, it is generally not simply the use of sex aids that contributes to ill feelings, but how they are used and what their use means to an individual or to a couple. If the use of sexual aids objectifies or depersonalizes sexual experiences, there may be a problem in the relationship that requires attention. If people are using sexual devices as a crutch because they feel inadequate or inferior, then their negative feelings may need to be explored. Under circumstances like these, the use of sexual devices can be unhealthy substitutes for interpersonal relationships.

Some couples find that a healthy relationship can comfortably accommodate the addition of sex toys. Others may find that after some experimentation they prefer to do without them. Still others may feel that their sexual value is threatened by the use of sex aids. An insecure individual may wonder if his or her partner is using a sex aid because of dissatisfaction with him or her.

These issues and any others that may be raised as a result of introducing sexual aids may be seen as an opportunity for individuals and couples to explore their feelings and discover the problems in their relationships. It is important to consider, however, that using sex aids is normal and not using sex aids is normal. It is simply a matter of individual preference.

Although the majority of sex aids and toys are sold to people who use them just to enhance their pleasure, some can be used in the treatment of sexual problems. Videos, audiotapes and written material can be helpful in assisting an individual or a couple to overcome anxiety or lack of information. Also, sexual devices can be particularly helpful for some disabled people whose disability inhibits their sexual expression. In order to improve communication and intimacy, marital and sex therapists suggest that couples who have concerns or fears about the use of sex aids or toys should be encouraged to talk openly with their partner about their feelings.

Copyright 1998