Sex toy

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Collection of sex toys Spielzeug bunt DSCF7403.jpg
Collection of sex toys
Vending machine selling a range of sex toys SexToysVendingMachine.jpg
Vending machine selling a range of sex toys
Christmas tree decorated with sex toys Sexy Three.jpg
Christmas tree decorated with sex toys

A sex toy is an object or device that is primarily used to facilitate human sexual pleasure, such as a dildo or vibrator. Many popular sex toys are designed to resemble human genitals, and may be vibrating or non-vibrating. The term sex toy can also include BDSM apparatus and sex furniture such as slings; however, it is not applied to items such as birth control, pornography, or condoms. Alternative expressions include adult toy and the dated euphemism marital aid, although "marital aid" has a broader sense and is applied to drugs and herbs marketed to supposedly enhance or prolong sex. Sex toys are most commonly sold at a sex shop, but they may also be sold in a pharmacy/chemist store, a pornographic DVD store, a head shop, or a department store. Today's sex toys are available in almost all countries for male and females

Human sexual activity, human sexual practice or human sexual behaviour is the manner in which humans experience and express their sexuality. People engage in a variety of sexual acts, ranging from activities done alone to acts with another person in varying patterns of frequency, for a wide variety of reasons. Sexual activity usually results in sexual arousal and physiological changes in the aroused person, some of which are pronounced while others are more subtle. Sexual activity may also include conduct and activities which are intended to arouse the sexual interest of another or enhance the sex life of another, such as strategies to find or attract partners, or personal interactions between individuals. Sexual activity may follow sexual arousal.

Dildo sexual device

A dildo is a sex toy, often explicitly phallic in appearance, intended for sexual penetration or other sexual activity during masturbation or with sex partners. Dildos can be made from a number of materials and shaped like an erect human penis. They are typically 4–6-inch (10–15 cm) in length, about the average length of an erect penis, but some may be longer, and circumference is typically 4–5-inch (10–13 cm).

Vibrator (sex toy) sex toy that is used on the body to produce pleasurable erotic stimulation

A vibrator, sometimes described as a massager, is a sex toy that is used on the body to produce pleasurable sexual stimulation. They can be applied to erogenous zones, such as the clitoris, the vulva or vagina, penis, scrotum or anus, for sexual stimulation, for the release of sexual frustration and to achieve orgasm. Vibrators may be recommended by sex therapists for women who have difficulty reaching orgasm through masturbation or intercourse.

Contents

Types

Erotic electrostimulation

Another form of sex toys for both men and women are those for erotic electrostimulation. Erotic electrostimulation refers to the act of using electricity for sexual stimulation. Electrostimulation dates back as early as the mid 1700s. By the mid 1970s, medical transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation (TENS) machines were widely available. The machines work by stimulating nerve endings with electricity, sending signals of stimulation to the brain. Electrostimulation works off this same principle, when the brain received a signal of stimulation from the genitals, pleasure hormones are released.

Erotic electrostimulation sexual practice

Erotic electrostimulation is a sexual practice involving the application of electrical stimulation to the nerves of the body, with particular emphasis on the genitals, using a power source for purposes of sexual stimulation. Electrostimulation has been associated with BDSM activities, and erotic electrostimulation is an evolution of that practice.

Transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation nerve stimulation for therapeutic purposes

Transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation is the use of electric current produced by a device to stimulate the nerves for therapeutic purposes. TENS, by definition, covers the complete range of transcutaneously applied currents used for nerve excitation although the term is often used with a more restrictive intent, namely to describe the kind of pulses produced by portable stimulators used to reduce pain. The unit is usually connected to the skin using two or more electrodes which are typically conductive gel pads. A typical battery-operated TENS unit is able to modulate pulse width, frequency and intensity. Generally TENS is applied at high frequency (>50 Hz) with an intensity below motor contraction or low frequency (<10 Hz) with an intensity that produces motor contraction. While the use of TENS has proved effective in clinical studies, there is controversy over which conditions the device should be used to treat.

Erotic furniture

Erotic furniture is furniture specially shaped for comfort, penetration levels, and stimulation. Also known as sex furniture, it is any form of furniture that can act as an aid to sexual activity. While almost anything can be used for this purpose, the most common form of furniture employed for sexual activity is the bed, but couches and sofas come a close second. These are not strictly erotic furniture, as their primary use is not erotic.

Erotic furniture furniture used for sexual purposes

Erotic furniture, also known as sex furniture, is any form of furniture that can act as an aid to sexual activity. While almost anything can be used for this purpose, the most common form of furniture employed for sexual activity is the bed, but couches and sofas come a close second. These are not strictly erotic furniture, as their primary use is not erotic.

Furniture movable objects intended to support various human activities

Furniture refers to movable objects intended to support various human activities such as seating, eating (tables), and sleeping. Furniture is also used to hold objects at a convenient height for work, or to store things. Furniture can be a product of design and is considered a form of decorative art. In addition to furniture's functional role, it can serve a symbolic or religious purpose. It can be made from many materials, including metal, plastic, and wood. Furniture can be made using a variety of woodworking joints which often reflect the local culture.

Eroticism quality that causes sexual feelings

Eroticism is a quality that causes sexual feelings, as well as a philosophical contemplation concerning the aesthetics of sexual desire, sensuality, and romantic love. That quality may be found in any form of artwork, including painting, sculpture, photography, drama, film, music, or literature. It may also be found in advertising. The term may also refer to a state of sexual arousal or anticipation of such – an insistent sexual impulse, desire, or pattern of thoughts.

A spanking bench Spanking Bench.png
A spanking bench

Specifically designed furniture for erotic purposes can include

Erotic spanking act of spanking another person for the sexual arousal or gratification of either or both parties

Erotic spanking is the act of spanking another person for the sexual arousal or gratification of either or both parties. It may involve very light and brief spanking or much more extensive spanking, including the use of implements such as whips or paddles. Activities range from a spontaneous smack on bare buttocks during a sexual activity, to occasional sexual roleplay, such as ageplay, to domestic discipline and may involve the use of a hand or the use of a variety of spanking implements, such as a spanking paddle or cane. Erotic spankings are commonly combined with other forms of sexual foreplay. The most common type of erotic spanking is administered on the bare buttocks, but can also be combined with bondage, in order to heighten the sexual stimulation of the experience.

Flagellation Whipping as a punishment

Flagellation, flogging, whipping or lashing is the act of beating the human body with special implements such as whips, lashes, rods, switches, the cat o' nine tails, the sjambok, the knout, etc. Typically, flogging is imposed on an unwilling subject as a punishment; however, it can also be submitted to willingly, or performed on oneself, in religious or sadomasochistic contexts.

Berkley Horse

The Berkley Horse is a BDSM apparatus, designed for, and by, Theresa Berkley in 1828. She referred to it as a "chevalet".

General penetrative toys

A type of Ben Wa balls Ben Wa balls.jpg
A type of Ben Wa balls
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Illustration of anal bead use.svg
Top- A woman pegging a man doggy-style with a pink strap-on dildo. Bottom- Illustration of anal bead use
Ben Wa balls sex toy

Ben Wa balls, also known as orgasm balls, rin-no-tama, Venus balls or Geisha balls, are small, marble-sized balls, usually hollow and containing a small weight, that roll around and are used for sexual stimulation by insertion into the vagina. Available in a variety of forms, the balls may be solid, or contain clappers or chimes within. Other, larger versions made of plastic encasing lesser balls are called Duotone balls. They are used by inserting them into the vagina and using the pubococcygeus muscles to hold them in, stimulating movement and/or vibration. Ben Wa balls should not be confused with anal kegel exercisers and prostate stimulators for men: Ben Wa balls sometimes have a retrieval string or attachment of some sort, but they do not have an adequately flared base for safe anal play.

A double penetration dildo or double dildo is a sex toy that allows for the simultaneous penetration of two bodily orifices at the same time. It is designed in the form of two penetrative stimulators that come separately or fixed on the single shaft. Some of them include a vibrating motor that turns them into double penetration vibrators.

Strap-on dildo sex device

A strap-on dildo is a dildo designed to be worn, usually with a harness, during sexual activity. Harnesses and dildos are made in a wide variety of styles, with variations in how the harness fits the wearer, how the dildo attaches to the harness, as well as various features intended to facilitate stimulation of the wearer or a sexual partner.

Anal toys

Two butt plugs Zwei unterschiedliche Butt-Plugs.jpg
Two butt plugs
  • Anal beads
  • Butt plugs are often shorter dildos intended for anal insertion. They tend to have a flared base to prevent the device from becoming sucked into the rectum.
  • Prostate massagers are devices designed to stimulate a man's prostate for health and pleasure.

Glass sex toys

Glass dildo Glass Dildo.JPG
Glass dildo

Glass sex toys are commonly made from clear medical grade borosilicate glass ("hard glass"). This particular type of safety toughened glass is non-toxic and will withstand extreme temperatures as well as physical shock without compromising its structural integrity.

The choice of this high-grade material provides safety in use and the option to heat or chill the toys. Borosilicate glass is also non-porous and can be sterilized to help prevent infection with reuse. The highest quality glass toys can even be put in the dishwasher making them easier to keep clean. As well as their practical qualities, a main selling point of glass sex toys is their visual appeal.

Some glass sex toys vibrate. There are two main ways this can be achieved. Either the toy may have a hole into which a small bullet vibrator can be inserted, or the core of the glass design can be modified to form a standard vibrator. The latter option usually has a plastic cap covering the battery compartment, which will also house any control buttons or switches.

Vibrators

Two vibrators in a sex shop Vibratoren bunt DSCF7424.jpg
Two vibrators in a sex shop
Vibrator for Couples: Love Ring Love Ring Vibrator.jpg
Vibrator for Couples: Love Ring

Vibrators are electric motor-powered devices intended to stimulate the body by creating a pulsating or buzzing sensation. Vibrators come in a range of shapes and sizes, for internal or external use. Some vibrators intended for internal use are phallic in shape. Small vibrators may have a stretchy loop attachment for use as a finger toy or cock ring. Penetrative vibrators usually measure twelve to eighteen cm (five to seven inches) in length and two to five cm (one to two inches) wide often to mimic the size of the average human penis.[ citation needed ]

  • Anal vibrators are designed to be inserted into the rectum, which may stimulate the prostate in men. The safest ones have a flared base which remains outside the body, that prevents the toy from becoming irretrievable.
  • Bullet vibrators are small, bullet-shaped vibrators that can be used for direct stimulation or inserted into other sex toys to increase stimulation. Some are sold with stretchy loops for attachment as a finger toy or cock ring.
  • G-spot vibrators are curved at one end to facilitate stimulation of the female G-spot.
  • Luxury vibrators have an increased focus on design and the use of expensive materials that appeal to a more upscale fashion market.
  • The rabbit vibrator, of which there are several variations, is a popular female sex toy popularized by the television series Sex and the City . [3] It comprises an insertable shaft which often has additional functionality, such as rotation and internal beads or a thrusting action. Attached to the shaft is a vibrating clitoral stimulator. For most rabbit vibrators this comes in the form of "bunny ears" which sit each side of the clitoris.
  • Vibrator wands, such as the Hitachi Magic Wand, are large vibrators that generally plug into an electrical outlet (versus operating on battery power) and are often marketed as back massagers. [4] They are able to produce far more powerful vibration than most battery-powered vibrators. [4] Various attachments made of silicone or a rubber material allow the toy to be used penetratively, or give the toy more interesting texture. [4] [5]
  • Sybians are dual-area vibrators in the form of a clitoral stimulator and vaginal stimulator, designed to stimulate the two erogenous zones simultaneously and independently.

Nipple toys

Penile toys

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A penis sleeve

Health, safety, and privacy concerns

No safety regulations exist in the sex toy industry. The sex toys are sold as novelty items so they do not need to adhere to certain regulations such as reporting the chemicals and materials used in a product. Due to this status, manufacturers are not responsible if their toys are used for any other purpose than being a novelty. [11] Regulations such as REACH [12] do exist, and some sex toys may be compliant to this though, despite that there is no obligation for manufacturers on attaining compliance. A 2006 study conducted by the Greenpeace Netherlands office found high level of phthalates in seven out of eight plastic sex toys tested. [13]

Sex toys are classified as novelties in the United States because the Food and Drug Administration has extensive testing and financial requirements in order for sex toys to be classified as medical devices. Therefore, sex toy manufacturers more often choose less complex production by labelling them a novelty, where their listed ingredients do not have to be accurate in chemical composition or percentage of ingredients. Due to the novelty classification, sex toys may contain toxins such as phthalates, which have been banned in children's toys by the CPSC. [14] [15] Phthalates are chemical plasticizers that are added as softeners, to create the malleable and soft effect that many look for in sex toys. [14]

Before using a sex toy, owners should take precautions. One should check for tears, rough seams or cracks that could harm the inside of the vagina or anus. Condoms should also be used on porous sex toys and sex toys that are being shared between two or more partners. They should also use appropriate lubricants; silicone lube will break down silicone toys, and oil-based lubes will break down latex condoms. [16]

Cleaning sex toys is also very important for sexual health and sex toy safety. Cleaning them will avoid the potential of bacterial infection, transmission of STIs (if shared), or pregnancy (if sperm is present on the toy). Porous sex toys (ridged, flexible, soft and squishy) are difficult to clean and can hide bacteria that multiply and harm the human body. Non-porous toys are easier to clean, making them less potentially harmful. [14] When cleaning sex toys, always use warm water and unscented anti-bacterial soap. [16]

Anal toys (butt plugs, small dildos, etc.)
Non-porous toys [16]
Porous toys [16]

In 2016, the security software company Trend Micro demonstrated that some Internet-connected electronic sex toys are vulnerable to cyberattacks, [18] thus creating the field of onion dildonics. [19] The ethical, legal, and privacy concerns are an area of active research by Sarah Jamie Lewis, amongst others.

India

Sex toys are illegal in India. [20] Selling sex toys is a punishable offense under section 292 of Indian penal code, as sex toys are considered an "obscene" product. Besides sex toys, any book, pamphlet, paper, writing, drawing, painting, representation, figure or any other object, is by the way also considered obscene by section 292 if it is lascivious or appeals to the prurient interest. [21] The punishment for the offense is up to two years in prison. [22] [23]

Japan

In Japan, many dildos are created to resemble animals or cartoon characters, such as Hello Kitty, rabbits or dolphins, so that they may be sold as toys, thus avoiding obscenity laws.[ citation needed ]

Malaysia

In Malaysia, the sale and importation of sex toys is illegal. [24]

South Africa

Section 18A of the Sexual Offences Act, 1957, inserted by the Immorality Amendment Act, 1969, prohibited the manufacture or sale of any item "intended to be used to perform an unnatural sexual act". The term "unnatural sexual act" referred to any sex other than vaginal heterosexual sex, and this prohibition was ostensibly aimed at preventing the use of dildos by lesbians. [25] No longer enforced, the section was repealed by the Criminal Law (Sexual Offences and Related Matters) Amendment Act, 2007.[ citation needed ]

United States

Sex toys and lubricants have become increasingly available in major commercial outlets in the United States. On-shelf displays tend to be more discreet than the offerings on web sites. These items tend to be displayed in the "sexual health" sections of stores. [26]

Until recently, many Southern and some Great Plains states banned the sale of sex toys completely, either directly or through laws regulating "obscene devices". [27] In 1999, William H. Pryor, Jr., an assistant attorney general in Alabama commenting on a case involving sex toys and discussing to what end the devices are used, was quoted as saying there is no "fundamental right for a person to buy a device to produce orgasm". A federal appeals court upheld Alabama's law prohibiting the sale of sex toys on Valentine's Day, 2007. [28]

In February 2008, a federal appeals court overturned a Texas statute banning the sales of sex toys, deeming such a statute as violating the Constitution's 14th Amendment on the right to privacy. [29] The appeals court cited Lawrence v. Texas , where the U.S. Supreme Court in 2003 struck down bans on consensual sex between gay couples, as unconstitutionally aiming at "enforcing a public moral code by restricting private intimate conduct". Similar statutes have been struck down in Kansas and Colorado.

Marty Klein, author of America's War on Sex and an advocate for the moral value of sex toys, has described the sex toy bans as a form of erotophobia and genophobia claiming the "extraordinary erosion of personal liberty, coupled with the massive disrespect of and fear of sexuality is no joke" and that the "Supreme Court [of the United States] has declared our orgasms a battlefield, and sex toys another casualty." [30]

Industry

As of 2008, the sex toys industry was valued at US$15 billion worldwide, with a growth rate of 30%. [31] 70% of sex toys are manufactured in China. [31] [32] [33] Sex toys are sold in various types of local and online sex shops, [34] at conventions associated with the adult industry, [35] [36] and at parties. However, some items, such as "hand held massagers", are sold in mainstream retail outlets such as drugstores. [35]

See also

Related Research Articles

Safe sex Ways to reduce the risk of acquiring STDs

Safe sex is sexual activity using methods or devices to reduce the risk of transmitting or acquiring sexually transmitted infections (STIs), especially HIV. "Safe sex" is also sometimes referred to as safer sex or protected sex to indicate that some safe sex practices do not completely eliminate STI risks. It is also sometimes used colloquially to describe methods aimed at preventing pregnancy that may or may not also lower STI risks.

Cock ring sexual device

A cock ring or cockring is a ring worn around the penis, usually at the base. The primary purpose of wearing a cock ring is to restrict the flow of blood from the erect penis in order to produce a stronger erection or to maintain an erection for a longer period of time. Genital adornment is another purpose, as is repositioning the genitals to provide an enhanced appearance.

A sex position is a position of the body that people use for sexual intercourse or other sexual activities. Sexual acts are generally described by the positions the participants adopt in order to perform those acts. Though sexual intercourse generally involves penetration of the body of one person by another, sex positions commonly involve penetrative or non-penetrative sexual activities.

Prostate massage

Prostate massage is the massage or stimulation of the male prostate gland for medical purposes or sexual stimulation.

Sybian Sex toy for women

A Sybian, or Sybian saddle, is a masturbation device primarily designed for use by women. It consists of a hollow saddle-like seat containing two powerful electric motors, motor speed controller boards, gearing, pullies and a platform on cranked axles such that a ridge on the top of the unit can be made to vibrate through a range of speeds as set using a wired external hand controller, and an upward pointing shaft set on an angle through the ridge can be made to rotate at speeds from zero rpm to several hundred rpm, again by use of the wired remote control. Flexible moulded attachments are supplied which fit over the vibrating ridge and shaft which mostly have integrated dildos on their top. In use, the rider locates the dildo into their body cavity for internal stimulation while pressing their external erogenous parts on the vibrating ridge.

Cock and ball torture Form of sexual play

Cock and ball torture (CBT), penis torture or dick torture is a sexual activity involving application of pain or constriction to the penis or testicles. This may involve directly painful activities, such as genital piercing, wax play, genital spanking, squeezing, ball-busting, genital flogging, urethral play, tickle torture, erotic electrostimulation, kneeing or kicking. The recipient of such activities may receive direct physical pleasure via masochism, or emotional pleasure through erotic humiliation, or knowledge that the play is pleasing to a sadistic dominant. Many of these practices carry significant health risks.

Forced orgasm consensual BDSM sexual play whereby a person consents to be forced to orgasm despite their attempts to delay or not to orgasm

A forced orgasm is consensual BDSM or kinky sexual play whereby a person consents to be forced to orgasm despite their attempts to delay or not to orgasm. The person being brought to involuntary orgasm would typically be put in physical restraints to deprive them of the ability to control the onset and intensity of orgasm, and to increase the feeling of helplessness. Some people find being in this position sexually arousing.

Rabbit vibrator vibrating and rotating sex toy, usually made in the shape of a phallus with a clitoral stimulator attached to the shaft

A rabbit vibrator is a vibrating and rotating sex toy, usually made in the shape of a phallus with a clitoral stimulator attached to the shaft. However, the rabbit vibrator has evolved to reach a wider market, with many new introductions that do not take a phallic shape. The name of the device is derived from the fact that the clitoral stimulator looks like a pair of rabbit ears.

A clitoral pump is a sex toy designed for sexual pleasure that is applied to the clitoris or labia to create suction and increase blood flow to the genitals. This device derives from the male prototype, the penis pump, which appeared in the early 1900s and is intended for sexual enhancement, or the treatment of erectile dysfunction.

G-spot vibrator sex toy

A G-spot vibrator is a sex toy with female and male varieties. The female version of the device is built to massage the G-spot, described as a bean-shaped area of the vagina. Some women report that it is an erogenous zone which, when stimulated, can lead to strong sexual arousal, powerful orgasms and female ejaculation. The male version of the G-spot vibrator is used for massaging the prostate for both sexual and health-related reasons.

An anal vibrator is a vibrator designed for sexual stimulation of the anus of both men and women. All anal vibrators have one common feature: they produce a vibrating effect in the rectum for pleasurable sensations.

Clitoral vibrator Sex Toy

Clitoral vibrators are vibrators designed to externally stimulate a woman's clitoris for her sexual pleasure and orgasm. They are sex toys created for massaging the clitoris, and are not penetrating sex toys, although the shape of some vibrators allows for penetration and the stimulation of inner erogenous zones for extra sexual pleasure. Regardless of the design, the main function of the clitoral vibrator is to vibrate at varying speeds and intensities. Vibrators are normally driven by batteries and some of them can be used underwater.

An artificial vagina is a device designed to imitate the female sex organ. To achieve this, it will generally be made of a soft material, lubricated, and sometimes heated.

Sex machine mechanical device created for sexual activity

A sex machine is a mechanical device used to simulate human sexual intercourse or other sexual activity.

Pussy torture BDSM activity

Pussy torture, also known as cunt torture or vagina torture is a BDSM or sexual activity involving the application of pain or pressure to the vulva or vagina, typically in the context of sadomasochism, applied through activities such as:

References

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Further reading