How To Go Sex Toy Shopping Alone Like a Boss
In 2016, you have the luxury of ordering all of your sex toys online. But it’s kind of hard to gauge the size of the dildo, the comfort of a pair of handcuffs, or the strength of a vibrator when you’re not feeling it in person.
But going into a sex shop alone can be nerve-wracking and overwhelming, plus some sex shops can be seedy and sketch.
We talked to Jacq Jones, owner of sex-positive sex toy store Sugar, about how to walk into the sex shop alone like a boss, and buy some shit that you’ll actually use.
Remember Why You’ve Gotta Roll Solo
Remember that time you went shopping with your boo and he convinced you to buy that super sexy LBD that forever sat in your closet? Even though you’d think that having a pal or a lover accompany you to the sex shop would be a good thing, nobody knows what you need better than you do. If you’re worried about rolling solo into the store, Jacq says not to.
“Don’t worry about it. A woman walking in to a sex toy store by herself is sending a clear message that she’s a smart, confident, independent woman,” says Jacq. “We love customers like that.”
Do Your Research
“Before you go to the store, look for a sex positive sex toy store,” says Jacq. “There’s a number of stores that work to create an environment that’s welcoming to women, that’s choosy about which products they sell and that makes sure all of their staff is well educated on sex and sexuality.”
In other words, that place with a “movie theater” and weird truck drivers going in and out? Probs not.
“A good place to find a sex positive sex toy store is to look at the Progressive Pleasure Club website, or check out Good Vibes or Babeland.”
Ask Lots of Questions
I know that your default answer to a sales person asking if they can help you is usually “I’m just looking, thanks,” but if you’re looking for something specific, or you’re not sure what you want, you should def ask one of the employees. After all, they know way more about sex toys than you do.
“If you’re alone, you can feel free to ask any question and get what you really want without worrying about what your friends or partner might think,” says Jacq. “Trust me, you aren’t going to shock us and we’re not going to talk about you when you leave. Unless we’re talking about how cute your handbag is.”
Consider the sex shop salesperson your sex therapist for the moment. Tell them what you like and ask questions about what you don’t.
“The more questions you ask and the more info you share, the better job we’ll do of steering you toward the toys that will work for you,” says Jacq. “Because, there’s no such thing as a sex toy that works for everyone.”
Start With The Basics
“If you’re buying a sex toy for the first time, a vibrator is a great place to start,” says Jacq. “Your clitoris has tons of nerve endings. Clits vary in how sensitive they are. Some women are able to have an orgasm from fingers or tongues, a few can even have an orgasm from regular old in and out sex, but over 70% won’t come that way. Lots of women need more stimulation. And that, is why we have vibrators.”
If you don’t know what kind of vibrator you like, think about what you like during sex. Do you like rapid movements? Or do you get too sensitive from too much stimulation?
“Some are stronger, some are less intense. Some have patterned vibrations, some don’t. Some are designed to be used on the outside of the body, some are designed to be used on the inside. But, once it’s yours, you can use it however you want,” says Jacq.
“Vibrators range in price from $10 – over $300 (and then there are the gold plated versions – but that might be a bit much for your first purchase). The less expensive vibes tend to use batteries, the more expensive ones are usually rechargeable and come with warranties,” says Jacq.
Get Lubed Up
Sure, you could buy lube at your local pharmacy, but I mean, you’re already at the sex shop. And who knows when else it’ll come in handy? Just maybe don’t tell your BF so he doesn’t think you’re hinting that you want to try anal.
“Lube is awesome,” says Jacq. “It makes things go more smoothly, regardless of if you’re alone or with a partner. Start out with a water based lube – it works with everything, toys, bodies, condoms. Watch out for lube with glycerin in it. Glycerin can cause irritation, or even yeast infections. But, good, glycerin-free lube smoothes the way!”
Don’t Take Yourself Too Seriously
You can’t listen to what works for somebody else, you have to find out what works for you. If you’re feeling that hot pink glitter vibrator? Fucking buy it. Nobody else has to see it, that’s the whole reason you went shopping alone in the first place!
“Have fun exploring your body,” says Jacq. “Your body is the one you’ll be with for the rest of your life. Celebrate it!”