In 1998, Sex and the City premiered its famed ‘Rabbit’ episode, in which reserved Charlotte discovered the orgasmic joys of the rabbit vibrator. The episode catapulted the Rampant Rabbit into everyday conversation, destigmatizing masturbation and vibrators. To this day, vaginal masturbation is represented by rabbit-style vibrator illustrations in magazine articles, and the most popular sextech toys focus on vaginal, anal and clitoral vibrations: from Lelo to Mystery Vibe; from Doxy to the classic Hitachi Wand. Even newer products with alternative shapes retain this focus, for example, Dame Product’s Eva II, which tucks under the labia to stimulate both partners, and the Ruby Glow, a rideable external vibrator.
Everywhere you look, the world of sextech is full of rumbling, wobbling, buzzing vibes, promising to thrill you in ever more innovative ways. The problem is, vibrations don’t work for everyone. Believe me, I’ve tried.
Years ago, when I got my first vibrator (a Rabbit, obviously), I was beyond excited to discover a new threshold of pleasure. There was definitely some stimulation, but apart from a pleasant tingling sensation, it wasn’t exactly a game-changing experience and it didn’t get me off.
I tried a bullet vibe, same effect. I thought maybe it was a price point problem, but I then tried an expensive Lelo, and nada. I eventually got a Magic Wand, encouraged after seeing porn full of people losing their minds whenever one was introduced during sex. I was underwhelmed by the low settings, so increased it little by little. The highest setting started to do something, shaking me to my core. I was excited, maybe this was it. Then my clit went numb, prompting a full-blown freak out and frantic Google searches about permanent effects (it was fine). It just wasn’t for me.
Luckily, the world of sextech is more varied than I realized, and there are more sensations to try if vibrations don’t work for you.
If you’re a fan of non-vibrating dildos, using some of the toys listed below could be a way to experiment with new thrusting sensations. These sex toys replicate the motion of sex with a penis, offering varied speeds, depth and intensity.
The Paloqueth thrusting dildo looks like a Rabbit, and while it does vibrate, the curved bulb head is designed to stimulate the G-spot. The shaft thrusts in and out (at a 1.5cm depth, with three settings) to mimic the feeling of sex with a phallus. The brand also offers a thrusting (and vibrating) anal/prostate massager with a 1cm thrust depth, seven thrusting settings and a wireless remote function.
Rotating and oscillating
While vibrations can feel like more of a surface or tingling sensation, rotation or oscillating movements can offer a deeper or more targeted effect.
The DMM thrusting vibrator rotates as well as thrusting, offering 10 ‘telescopic’/thrusting modes and 10 rotating modes. It’s also double-ended – one end mimics the shape of a penis, while the other mimics a tongue. Plus it even warms up, allowing for all sorts of experimentation.
Lovense’s Osci 2 claims to be the “world’s first oscillating G-spot toy” moving the vibrations in and out at the tip to deliver a new sensation to the G-spot. It also pairs with an app, so users can program their favourite modes.
Chilly sex toys can be a turn-off, and some sextech producers have focused on providing a more comfortable, warming experience.
Doc Johnson’s iWand offers many of the features of a typical Magic Wand, with an added warming feature – up to 109°F (42°C) – that can be used independently from the vibrations if desired.
Alternatively, L’Amourose’s Rosa Rouge Warming Vibrator is a popular and stylish internal warming vibrator, which could simply be used as a warming non-vibrating dildo if needed.
There are also accessory options to help create a warmer experience. The Pulse Lube Warmer is a motion sensor device that delivers gently warmed lube (no more chilly yelping), while Fleshlight offers a heated warmer for its masturbation sleeves.
Recent years have seen the introduction of ‘pleasure air’ clitoral-focused sex toys into the market. These devices use suction and air pulses targeted directly onto the clitoris to create new kinds of pressure sensations, claiming to mimic the feeling of oral sex.
The Womanizer, Satisfyer Pro 2 and the app-connected We-Vibe Melt all promote a similar effect. I’ll be honest, the Satisfyer Pro (the cheapest option) wasn’t for me, but it did feel very different from regular vibrations, so I’d still recommend that other non-vibe-loving folk try it out for themselves.
These recent innovations are still relatively niche, but they demonstrate the demand for more varied sextech and new sensations in an oversaturated market. Vibrations aren’t the be all and end all; there’s a whole world of new experiences to be had, if you know where to start looking.