I was meant to write about butt plugs. Instead I got my hands on Inga Muscio’s Cunt. So you get a pre-review rant.
There is nothing that turns me off feminist, sex-positive works like anti-science, irrational and ignorant statements. I just can’t stomach the woo-woo shit. It’s harmful and it’s insulting. Every time someone puts down “western” medicine as man-made they imply that critical thinking is something beyond a woman’s brain.
I can’t stand the naivety of people who promote Big Supplement and Big Quack while throwing stones at Big Pharma. I despair at women who poo-poo highly effective and safe methods of contraception and fail to mention that the alternatives they propose are only suitable to people for whom unplanned pregnancy wouldn’t be a problem. I feel sick whenever somebody praises the wonders of menstrual extraction or herbal abortions. If they were so wonderful then why fight for abortions in clinics? And I absolutely abhor the “birth is so medicalized” crowd.
I’ll grant you that the woo-woo is seductive in its simplicity. You just have to close your eyes and wish and it’s gonna be all right. It’s comforting. But the comfort it brings is just an illusion. I have once fallen for the homebirth agenda. I’ve watched the Orgasmic Birth and the Business of Being Born. I’ve seen how lay midwifes use the anti-patriarchal sentiments to sell the fantasy of female empowerment through natural and unmedicated birth. But the bubble bursts when you look at perinatal mortality rates (that homebirth midwifes are always very reluctant to release).
Medicine, when practiced properly, is based on evidence of efficacy. It is based on knowing the pros the cons and weighing them against each other. One of the reasons why woo-woo wins over people is that it doesn’t require knowledge. It doesn’t require critical thinking. It’s easier to “listen to your body” than analyse results and methodology of a clinical trial. It’s easier to invent a “wholistic approach” than to spend 5+ years studying how organs in the human body really interact and how to properly diagnose an illness based on it’s symptoms.
That’s all for now – I plan on posting a review of the book in the beginning of 2014. Till then please keep a level head and don’t let seductively easy ideas fool you.
Keep an open mind - but not so open that your brain falls out
most often attributed to Richard Feynman
We would like to dedicate our first review on this site to people who are just starting their adventures with sex toys. It is not always easy to overcome your shame and embarrassment or social taboos and go for what you really want in the realm of sex. It is however worth trying as not bowing to social pressure, overcoming reservations and embarrassment can be magnificently freeing.
Flexi Felix was the very first sex toy I’ve ever bought. I went to a certain brick and mortar sex shop to check out their anal toys (I prefered this to ordering on-line and it was a bit of a challenge for me – someday I’ll write more about that experience). Since I’d done a bit of reading first I knew to ask for something made of quality pure silicone. After asking some questions the saleswoman showed me something that looked like a catterpillar with a smiley face. Anal beads made by Fun Factory. First thing I noticed was their nice look. Fun Factory released them in three color versions: black, dark pink and light blue. It’s hard to say what made me like the look of them but I have to admit there is certainly something to it. Their friendly and clean design appeals to people who’d want to try an anal product but they are too embarrassed or shy. After all it resembles a toy in the original meaning rather than a sexual one.
Flexi Felix is made from pure medical grade silicone what makes it body-safe and easy to disinfect. It’s a great alternative to cheap anal beads that are either made of smelly-stingy jelly or rough-edged hard plastic and ordinary string. Unfortunately the matte finish of the silicone makes Felix quite a lint magnet. It’s a trade-off since it also helps lube stay nicely in place. Sometimes you put a lubed sex toy inside you and pull it out dry (ouch!) – not in this case. Of course this depends also on the lube. It’s worth remembering that one of the advantages of silicone toys is that unless you’re planning on using latex or poliisoprene barriers (poliurethane is A-ok) you can coat them in oil-based lube. Oil based lubes can be awesome for anal play especially for those people that are sensitive to glycerin and have limited access to glycerin-free options.
The shape of the beads is one of the bigger advantages of this toy. They are not round but egg-shaped. Slow tapering makes insertion easier especially for people who have difficulty relaxing their sphincter and find round ends problematic while steeper ending makes the beads provide more sensations on their way out. The beads’ size – starting at 18 mm (3/4″) diameter and going up only to 23 mm (1″) -makes them an ideal toy for people who don’t have much experience or simply prefer subtler sensations during anal play. The insertable length is 26 cm (10″), although, as you can see in the picture below, they are really stretchy and have quite a bit of a give. They feel secure tough – I don’t think I could ever break them during use or that they could slap me going out.
The string ends with a handle in a shape of cartoony caterpillar’s face with eye-sockets serving as finger holes. It works well at preventing Felix from spending more time inside us than we would like but also doesn’t dig into buttocks. The design is really well though-out.
At the beginning of my adventure with sex toys those beads gave me a lot of joy. Nowadays I use them less because the small size isn’t satisfying the way it was before. Still, every now and then, when I have wild craving for anal play and enough patience for long preparation or my body doesn’t feel like it is going to allow anything bigger, I take Flexi Felix out of our chest.
I recommend Flexi Felix – especially if haven’t started exploring anal play yet. You won’t have to worry about it getting “lost” and afterwards you’ll be able to clean it with soap and water (and if you want disinfect it). A thing to remember is to wash off any agents you use – you really don’t need another hole in your body
Only people I won’t recommend it to are those who need more girth and those who don’t find the humor in the design appealing. After all YKINMK and not everyone wants a smiling caterpillar sticking it’s head out of their butt.
The answer may seem obvious to you: “who wouldn’t want to get free sex toys?”. After all it’s not like those products are cheap. In comparison with other goods produced on a similar scale, with comparable material costs and electronic sophistication they are usually really, really expensive. Just think about any simple electronic appliance that has one basic motor, a switch with a few options and is connected to a source of power (battery or wall socket). How much do you expect to pay for it? And now try to find a good sex toy in this range.
I won’t lie: the shame tax on sex toys makes them expensive enough that it would be difficult for us to buy everything we own by ourselves. And yet… it’s just a tiny part of the answer. If you factor in our monetary investments in the website, hours and effort we spend on writing and advertising (not to mention testing toys we don’t like) and compare it with the value of the goods we have so far received – it would make a better sense business wise to get a second job.
The real answer is we care about sex and pleasure education. Every time someone ends up literally burned by a sex toy, every time a woman thinks she’s broken because she can’t get off the Hollywood way, every time someone ends up in the ER with a slimline vibrator stuck up their rectum there is suffering that could be so easily prevented. I remember how during our never ending talks Caramel asked me why I wrote my Polish website on female masturbation. I couldn’t find the right words to express what I was feeling. I talked a bit about the safety advice but felt there was something huge missing. Then she told me: “you simply can’t stand a woman being unable to ever come”. She got it! Granted – it was a simplification – an orgasm isn’t the most important thing about sexual pleasure, but so frequently the lack of it is a symptom of sexual misinformation and disconnect.
I review because toys can be fantastic and life-changing. They can also be disappointing and harmful. And sometimes it takes just one bad experience for someone to give up on them. I’m a sex toy geek. I want to know which product is stronger, which is squishier, which has more settings even if it’s something I don’t have the anatomy to enjoy. I’d like to think I have the knowledge. However,I don’t think others should have to be like me. People deserve great toys even when they don’t want to spend hours researching.
So I’m either on a selfless mission for sex education or want to make you come as hard as I can while still saying monogamous with my girlfriend.