This year, British sex toy company Lovehoney, is giving the public the chance to design a sex toy of the future. The company is calling for toys with a “sci-fi twist”, with winners of the ‘Design a Sex Toy‘ competition getting a $5,000 cash prize in their local currency, and their designs turned into a real product to be sold on the Lovehoney store. The winner also gets a share of the cash made when the product sells, which could add up pretty quickly.
To enter you have to be over 18 and fall under one of three categories: students, professional designers and the general public. The product can be designed for whatever body part – nipples, genitals, alternative erogenous zones – and whatever scenario, whether for solo use, couples, orgies.
Since the world of sex tech is becoming increasingly accessible for people with mobility issues and other disabilities, as well as being more gender neutral in design and marketing, it will be interesting to see the results of the competition in February 2020.
[Not so] Judge Prudey
Acknowledging consideration for diversity and inclusivity in the product’s design as “sex tech simply cannot ignore the demands of all bodies”, judge and sex tech expert Bryony Cole added that it’s important to “make sure you are working on something you would buy – and love.”
Another judge and sex educator, Alix Fox, encourages contestants to “think about whether you already own a pleasure product that has an annoying issue or limitation you could innovate to fix – is there something it lacks in design that you could hack to make it sublime?”
Whereas Lovehoney’s Product Director and judge advises you to think outside the box. “Don’t look at existing sex toys on the market – look instead at kitchen gadgets that have unique shapes! Think about the things you use and love in your everyday life and how you can incorporate these design elements into your toy.”
Other judges include sexual health expert Francisco Ramirez; and Lovehoney’s Head of New Product Development, Paul Jaques.
What about the royalties?
The winner of the same contest in 2009, Trevor Murphy, inventor of Sqweel has since received over $400,000 in royalties for successfully making a “best-selling oral sex toy,” a rotating wheel with tongue-like-spokes.
Murphy explains “the idea for the Sqweel came to me fully formed as I was drifting off to sleep one night. I’d been thinking of small, compact designs all evening, especially circular shapes. I snapped awake and told my partner: ‘I’ve just come up with the winning sex toy design!'”
And now it’s over to you.