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Sales of face masks and hand sanitizer aren’t the only things selling well these days — retailers across the country say sales of sex toys have spiked over the last few months, as people look for new ways to self-pleasure during their self-quarantine.
Retail chain, Lovers, which also owns A Touch of Romance and Christal’s, says sales were already “really high” right before their stores were forced to close on March 25th.
“We believe customers realized they were going to be stuck inside and bought a toy before it was too late,” says Barbara Cook, President of Lovers Family of Stores. “In some cases, those stores in the last few days before they closed were up double digits compared to the same time period last year.”
Online sex toy retailer, Ella Paradis, meantime, reports a 200% increase in sales on their website since the coronavirus outbreak forced people into quarantine. Among their best-sellers: waterproof vibrators, remote-controlled couples toys, and the site’s popular “Battery-Operated Boyfriend.”
“Our goal as a company has always been to deliver pleasure, and people need some pleasure right now more than ever,” says Tino Dietrich, CEO of Ella Paradis.
According to Dietrich, the idea that sex (or sex toys) can be good for stress isn’t completely unfounded. “During orgasm [the hormone] oxytocin is released from the brain, which could aid in stress relief,” he says, citing data from the National Institute of Health.
According to sex toy manufacturer TENGA’s 2019 Self Pleasure Report, Americans say masturbating is one the most “stress-relieving activities” they can do. The report found that 74% of respondents use masturbation as a form of self-care, while 54% say it improves their mental wellbeing. More than 88% of Americans, meantime, say that masturbation helps to boost their mood.
As we settle into the reality of at least another few months of stay-at-home orders (if not longer), studies say a little self-pleasure could also benefit us in other areas as well.
Research has shown that the release of oxytocin could help to strengthen our immune systems. We already know that masturbation can help increase libido and energy, but according to documents published on the NIH website, a study by German researchers found that men who masturbated to orgasm were also able to increase their white blood cell count. Conclusions remain to be drawn, but the study does offer a little more incentive to do a little corona-related caressing.
For Chris Cicchinelli, CEO and President of Pure Romance (a direct seller of “relationship enhancement” and intimacy products), sales of the brand’s sex toys are up 88% since the first week of March, with even the “bondage” category seeing a small uptick in sales. “Statistically, it is not uncommon for couples to turn to sex for comfort and advancing their relationships,” he says. “Who says there’s no sunshine after the rain?”
Whether you’re just starting out with sex toys or skilled at the art of stimulation, we’ve rounded up some of the most popular devices and accessories that people are buying right now.
1. Ella Paradis Better Love Rabbit Lily
This unisex vibrator features 10 different speeds and dual motors. Turn it up for a more intense experience, or keep the vibrations slow and smooth, depending on your mood. Either way, it stays super quiet.
The Rabbit Lily is 100% waterproof and features a soft silicone tip that can be inserted up to four inches deep.
2. We-Vibe Chorus
Designed for couples, this vibrator offers dual stimulation with more than ten different modes. The vibrator is super soft and flexible, to adapt to the different curves and crevices in your body. The touch-sensitive remote reacts to human touch. The harder you squeeze, the more intense the vibrations.
3. TENGA Easy Beat Eggs
Designed by the Japanese firm, TENGA, these eggs are all uniquely-textured inside for a more heightened masturbatory experience. “Crack” the egg open and slide it over your shaft to enjoy a surprisingly arousing sensation. This six-pack contains six different suction styles, from wavy to “tornado.”
4. Emojibator Eggplant Personal Massager
This “Emojibator” is a fun and accessible way to get into sex toys, without any intimidation. This unisex massager is 100% waterproof and lets you choose from ten different vibration speeds and settings, from gentle to intense. It runs on a single AAA battery (included).
5. LELO SONA 2 Cruise
A uniquely-shape device designed for clitoral stimulation, the SONA 2 offers gentle waves that ripple along the body both inside and out. A wider surface area and large mouth provides plenty of options for play, while the silicone absorbs the sonic waves and transmits them back to your clitoris, for a deeper yet gentle sensation. The harder you press it against your body, the more powerful the stimulation.
6. LELO TOR 2
This vibrating ring is worn by men but enhances pleasure for both partners. With six different settings and a snug (but not too tight) fit, the vibrator gently titillates while helping to control his orgasm, for longer sessions in bed. Take it out of the bedroom too — the TOR 2 is 100% waterproof, making it a great toy for the shower or tub.
7. Chakrub Natural Crystal Dildo
From the brand “Chakrubs” (get it?) comes this rose quartz crystal dildo, which is at once the craziest and also the most inspired sex accessory we’ve seen. Said to be imbued with the “energy of compassion and peace, tenderness and healing, nourishment and comfort,” this dildo is a subtle yet powerful way to practice self-love. A bonus: it won’t look awkward sitting on your beside table or counter either.
8. TENGA Flex White
One of the most popular products in TENGA’s lineup, the Flex White is a sleek, streamlined masturbation cup, designed to add new sensations with every stroke. It’s lined with a soft and flexible rubbery material that loosens and tightens like a spiral every time you move the device up and down your shaft. The rippled outer layer ensures a comfortable grip.
9. OMG Vibra G Pulse Clitoral Suction Vibe
This unique vibrator targets your most sensitive areas, adding a special “suction” sensation in addition to its textured shave and ten different pulsating waves. A single charge gets you up to 90 minutes of continuous use. It’s also fully waterproof so you can use it in the shower or tub.
10. Club Vibe 3.OH Hero
From the popular sex tech brand, OhMiBod, this “Club Vibe 3.OH” vibrator reacts to ambient sounds and sends a corresponding wave pattern that “grooves” and pulsates to music and noise. You can also choose from five pre-set pulsations, or use “tease” mode, where you or a partner can manually control the sensations using the included wireless remote. The mushroom-shaped head is designed to stimulate the prostate. A single charge gets you up to an hour of play.
11. Pure Romance “Dream On” Massager
Is this a device for soothing sore joints or an adult play toy? Pure Romance says its “Dream On” massager functions as both. The spherical silicone massager delivers seven different vibrating speeds and pulsing patterns that can be applied to both sore — and sensitive — areas of the body. The simple shape is designed for easy use for both men and women.
12. Satisfyer Men Masturbator
Guys: get a better grip the next time you self-stimulate with the Satisfyer Men masturbator cup. The device may look intense but it’s pretty straightforward to use. The Satisfyer slides easily over your shaft, with a silky-soft “cyberskin” sleeve mimicking the real thing. Use the grippy sides to control the pressure, from soft to strong.
Satisfyer’s “air cushion” technology cradles your shaft without clinging, letting you work your way around the different contours and sensations inside the sleeve. A simple twist-off cap at the top lets you release everything when you’re done, and the entire cup can be run under soap and water for easy cleaning.
13. Hide & Play Lipstick Vibrator
Even if you’re not the adventurous type, everybody should at least keep one of these lipstick vibrators on-hand, whether for self-pleasure or couples play. Either way, the discreet lipstick-sized device delivers a lot of punch for its package. Get eight vibration settings through the uniquely-angled tip. It’s waterproof too. Use this while you’re stuck at home for awhile, then slip it into your cosmetics kit or toiletry bag to take with you on your next trip, once we’re finally allowed out again.