The Best Sex Toys And Tips For The *Best* Pleasure, By Yourself Or With A Partner
As women, societal stigmas touch every part of our lives. Norms that surround how we’re “supposed” to look or how we’re “supposed” to act can thrust us into intense feelings of embarrassment, judgment, and shame. The most prominent aspect that’s been negatively targeted – directly or indirectly – is our sexuality.
It can be a huge challenge for some women to really tap into their own sexual pleasure, since society has widely relegated it for men only. Though the idea that women-centric sex and self-pleasure is shameful (and all too risqué) is decreasing in the public eye, there’s no doubt that stigmas about it still exist. We’re here to stand up for pleasure for everyone – and one of the best ways to explore it is starting with sex toys.
We chatted with Al Fine, CEO and co-founder of Dame, a company creating pleasure-forward toys and essentials with wellness in mind about how to explore your sexuality with sex toys, the best ways to introduce and use them with a partner, and why it’s important for our total wellbeing.
We’ve likely all heard it through media or in conversation (or through lived experience 😵💫) that men have a better time in bed. This idea is embodied in what’s known as the pleasure gap: the simple fact that on average, between men and women, only 39% of women orgasm during sex, versus 91% of men, which just feels… unfair! Sure, orgasm isn’t always the goal when engaging in sex, but it *does* feel pretty damn good – and we think women are entirely worthy of regularly experiencing that.
“Sex is how we as adults play, and it’s an important part of connection and intimacy,” Fine says. “Women deserve to feel pleasure and to have pleasurable sexual experiences, as it’s important for our overall physical and mental health.”
Sex Toy Tips For Flying Solo
We’re no stranger to the fact that owning your own pleasure in front of a partner can honestly be pretty scary – which is why we (and Fine) recommend starting with a little alone time. 😏
“Exploring something alone is the safest way you can explore anything. Think of it like trying on an outfit and seeing if it looks good on you first versus just walking out of the house,” Fine offers. “Out of all the things to try that are new, trying a sex toy is relatively risk-free – you can try it by yourself in privacy and it’s an important part of self-exploration.”
Masturbating with a toy (whether it’s a vibrator, dildo, or another preferred piece) can help you get real familiar with what you like — and don’t like — for yourself. Tapping deeper into those feelings will also help you build confidence with your own sexuality, so when (and if) you’re curious about trying sex toys with your partner, you can be prepared to approach the situation with suave.
“Self-pleasure for women isn’t just important for sexual wellness, but physical and mental health as well. Understanding your own body is an important part of self-care and self-connection,” Fine says. “Masturbating can be a form of self-love, and the act of learning to enjoy your own body and figuring out what feels pleasurable for you can even boost your self-esteem.”
How To Use Sex Toys With A Partner
According to Fine, incorporating sex toys into partnered sex allows you to spice things up, have longer sex, reduce pain, and even lead to more sex. More than anything, it can increase your chances of achieving orgasm, which can be very satisfying when you take the pleasure gap into account.
As with any new factor in the bedroom, it’s important to maintain open communication with your partner to ensure they’re on-board with the idea. Since some people can feel intimidated (or potentially replaced) by sex toys, it might be a good bet to pitch the idea with both parties' pleasure in mind.
“It could be helpful to tell your partner about how positive you can see your sex life becoming, or that you see parts of that currently,” Fine suggests. “You can talk about how using a vibrator can take your pleasure to the next level, and add something new and different without making them feel like you are replacing them.”
Men sometimes feel pressure to perform during sex. Incorporating sex toys could help alleviate some of the pressure, allowing for much more steamier, sexier, and more enjoyable sex. This could be another great talking point to bring up with your partner. Plus, we bet it’s just as satisfying for them to watch you climax as it is for you to do it.
Toys aside, good sex (and masturbation!) have tons of benefits like lower blood pressure, improved sleep, a boosted immune system, and a stronger pelvic floor. Toys are just a tool and an added bonus that can help you get there – literally.
The Best Sex Toys For Beginners
This toy keeps things simple and sleek – plus it's approachable, perfect for starting your exploration. This vibe can be used internally and externally.
This vibrating wand is top-rated for being beginner-friendly, but will still be just as effective once you've mastered the art of sex toys. It gets its power from a convenient power cord, plus it can be submerged under water if bath time is meant for you time.
This vibe fits perfectly on two fingers – whether it be your own or a partner's, this sex toy will keep the fun coming. 😉
Toys with different vibrating settings offer a nice change in pace, which can give each sexy session a good refresh. This pick can be used internally or externally – it's compatible with water-based lubricants plus the two-hour runtime won't let any distractions get in the way of your pleasure.
This unique sex toy is designed to be hands-free, taking the cumbersome task of holding a toy in place away entirely. That way, you can tune in on the moment and just feel good.
This toy has quite the cheeky design, with two flexible rabbit ears that can move in any which way. It's meant to be played with!
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Some quotes have been edited for clarity.
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Lead photo by Anna Shvets / PEXELS.