This is a guide to help you find the right vibrator for you.
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The greatest leap of technology wasn’t the switch from a horse-drawn cart to the car. It wasn’t switching from snail mail to electronic mail. Okay, sure we’ll give a pass on vaccines and modern medicine (saving lives and all). To a lot of people, the best thing ever invented is their vibrator — and they’re not wrong.
Sure, a vibrator won’t cure diseases, connect us with people around the world, or get us anywhere faster. But the right vibrator can give you easier, more powerful, and more plentiful orgasms. That’s right. You can have All The Orgasms once you find the vibrator that works best for your body.
Why do you need a vibrator, and how do you get your hands (among other body parts) on this marvel of modern science? Let us help you put motor-powered pleasure in the (literal) palm of your hands.
Vibrators are mechanized, motorized sex toys that create sensation either externally or internally. For years, most vibrators had a wide head that was meant to be pressed against the clitoris. They’re aren’t an invention of the 1980s, either. Try the 1880s. That’s right, the first vibrator was invented in 1891 by Dr. J. Mortimer Granville as a medical device to treat the completely made-up diagnosis of hysteria. Only women could be “hysterical” and the main treatment was an orgasm.
Orgasms are good for relieving tension, headaches, and menstrual cramps, so technically your vibrator could be a medical device. Too bad doctors don’t prescribe orgasms anymore. Any sex toy, including a vibrator, is meant to give your hand a break and allow you to feel a different kind of sexual pleasure. Regardless of what you might have been told, a vibrator won’t replace your partner during sex. If it does, there was a problem long before you bought a sex toy.
By the mid-20th century, manufacturers began to get more creative with vibrators. Some began to look more like dildos — long, cylindrical shapes made of plastic. Then came the Rabbit. The original Rabbit vibrator was manufactured in Japan and given “bunny ears” to get past Japanese laws that didn’t allow the manufacture or sale of sex toys.
Imagine that conversation…
“It’s not a vibrating sex toy! Look, it’s got ears! Clearly it’s a motorized bunny for your kids to play with!”
We’ve come along way from the early days of vibrators. Today, vibrators come in all shapes and sizes and can be used by anybody. It doesn’t matter whether you have a vulva or a penis — if it feels good, you should play with it.
Some sex toys aren’t classified as vibrators but you can find many with vibration as an option: cock rings, butt plugs, prostate massagers, masturbation sleeves, and dildos.
Vibrators are typically considered a “female” sex toy, but this is so wrong. Literally anyone can use a vibrator. While many vibrators are made for clitoral or g-spot stimulation, plenty of people with penises have placed a wand massager against their penis or testicles a few times to their surprise and delight. A lot of toys marketed to people with penises vibrate, pulsate, throb, hum, and create a variety of stimulation.
Why? Because to some people it feels good!
The simple explanation of using a vibrator is that you turn it on and press it against your body. But because there are so many different options that means there are also a lot of ways to enjoy and use a vibrator, too.
No matter what marketing, porn, or your friends tell you, there’s no single “right” way to use a vibrator. The best part is finding out what turns you on and gets you off. They’re called toys for a reason. You’re supposed to play with them and have fun!
Sex toys are assumed to be a safe way to experience sexual pleasure, and they usually are, but anything can be dangerous if you don’t know what you’re doing. Anytime body fluids can be shared or swapped, you should always consider safety, as well.
Here’s how to play safely with a vibrator:
Buying a first or just a new vibrator can be a source of real stress. If everyone likes different kinds of sensations and stimulation, how do you know what kind of vibrator you should buy? Randomly picking one off a shelf at the adult toy store is a bit like playing the lottery. The chances of finding a vibrator you love that way are slim.
Unfortunately sex toys market themselves as if they’ll make everyone have massive orgasms until they pass out. It’s just not true. We’re all unique and what gets you off won’t work for someone else. This makes buying a sex toy, especially a vibrator, a little tricky. But we’ve got your back.
There’s never a guarantee that a vibrator will be perfect, but with a few tips, you have a better chance of success and orgasms.
It doesn’t matter if this is your first vibrator or your tenth. Using a checklist before buying is usually a good idea. Knowing what you enjoy shouldn’t keep you from experimenting with new sensations and ways to play, but if your budget is limited, it helps you find good match.
For the most part, the easy way to know if your vibrator is made of a body-safe material is if it’s hard and not squishy. Silicone is the only exception because many silicone toys can be made to feel soft and slightly malleable.
These toys tend to be soft and squishy in your hand. While sex toys made of these materials aren’t recommended, they are often the most affordable option and lots of people own them. If this is all you can afford, covering your toy with a condom is the best way to play safe with it. But you’ll never be able to completely sterilize it.
Once you pay for sexual pleasure, you want to make sure it lasts. This is especially true when you spend $100 to $200 on a sex toy. It’s extremely important that you keep your sex toy clean and stored properly so it works as long as possible.
How you clean and store your vibrator depends a lot on what material its made of. Most sex toy materials fall into two categories: body safe and not body safe. Typically, this is determined not just by what it’s made of but also whether it’s non-porous and can be sterilized or not.
Important note: before you clean your vibrator, pull out the batteries (if applicable) or unplug it from a power source. This is an electrical product and water and electricity don’t mix.
Cleaning a vibrator is (usually) as simple as using warm water and soap. You can use a sex toy cleaner, but they’re rarely necessary. For single person use, water and soap will be enough most of the time.
But if you want or need to sterilize your vibrator, that’s where things get tricky. Sterilizing a sex toy is fairly easy, too. You’ve got several option:
Not every sterilization method works for every vibrator. You can’t submerge a vibrator into water because of the motor, so the boiling water and dishwasher options are out. And if your vibrator is made of a porous material like jelly or rubber, it’s impossible to fully sterilize it, no matter what you do.
Once you clean your vibrator, you need to dry it completely and put it away properly.
Now that your vibrator is clean, it’s time to store it correctly. Why does it matter? Because no one wants lint, dust, and hair near their genitals. Plus, if you choose the cheaper, porous material, storing your vibrators incorrectly can ruin them.
Most sex toys, vibrators or otherwise, come with a bag. This is typically known as a storage bag or dust bag. It’s sole purpose is to keep dust and lint and whatever else off your vibrator when you’re not using it. So don’t throw it away when you open the box. Keep it and use it. If your vibrator doesn’t come with a bag, you can buy one.
Yes, you can keep your vibrator on the nightstand, especially if you’re using it a lot. But if you do that, get into a habit of cleaning it before you use it to get rid of whatever is stuck on it.
Silicone, wood, metal, glass sex toys can all be thrown into a single bag or even a box if you need to. There’s a common misconception that silicone sex toys can’t touch or they’ll melt each other. That’s not true, as long as your vibrator really is made of medical-grade, body safe silicone.
Porous toys — jelly, rubber, TPR/TPE — are a different matter. You have to store them in a cool, dark place and they have to be stored in their own container. Put them together and let them get warm, and you won’t have a vibrator anymore. It’ll be nothing but melted goo. Thankfully, it’s rare for vibrators to be made of this material.
Store your charging cord or batteries with your vibrator. This makes your life much easier once you’re ready to play with it. Batteries shouldn’t be left inside your battery because, over time, they can leak and corrode the motor.
The vast majority of people use a vibrator by holding it against a spot on or in their body until they orgasm. That’s a great way to enjoy it, and there’s nothing wrong with just doing that. But if you want to get creative or do something new (especially with a partner), we’ve got a few suggestions for you:
Not everyone is capable of multiple orgasms, no matter what a sex toy company tells you. Even those who can have multiple orgasms might not always get off as much as they’d like. But if you want to try, vibrators are a great way to make that happen. For some people, it’s the strength of the vibrations and for others, it’s because the stimulation is so different from what they’re used to.
And this isn’t just for people with a vulva. If you’ve got a penis, you might be capable of more than one orgasm, too. Prostate massage is powerful for a lot of people, and a vibrating prostate massager may send you over an orgasmic cliff. You likely won’t ejaculate with each subsequent orgasm, but you’ll still get the rest of the sensations of a climax.
For many straight cisgender women, penetrative sex (with a penis) will not get them off. It’s about sensation, angles, pressure, pace, and a million other variable. Plenty of people with vulvas require clitoral stimulation to orgasm. While there’s no requirement that both of you climax during penetration, a vibrator can help.
You’ll want to choose a vibrator that can easily fit against your body based on the sex position you’re in. Wand massagers and g-spot vibrators can be great for this. If your hand can easily slip between your legs, a bullet vibe or palm vibrator may work, too. Try to choose a vibrator that you know works well for you during solo play to increase your chances of success.
Orgasm control is mainly done during kinky sex, BDSM, and power exchange play. But anyone can play with their orgasms (or their partner’s — with consent) and that’s all orgasm control is. A different way to experience a climax. There are three types of orgasm control, and all can be done with a vibrator.
Okay, so now we’ve got you super excited about vibrators and orgasms. You’re probably wondering which one to buy and where to find it. Remember, not every vibrator works for everyone, and you definitely want to read reviews. But we’re happy to give you a place to begin:
Anything by We-Vibe: They’ve got nearly every type of vibrator you can imagine from g-spot vibes to anal plugs. Best of all, most of their toys work with a smartphone app that lets you customize your vibrations and play with a partner, even if they’re not in the room with you!
Satisfyer or Womanizer: People who love clit suction have their favorites between Satisfyer and Womanizer. Both provide a type of stimulation and orgasm that you’ve probably never felt before. The people who love these vibrators talk about how fast they get off and how powerful their orgasms are.
Original Magic Wand: Formerly known as the Hitachi, the Original Magic Wand is the first popular wand massager that was originally sold as a “personal” massager. Users made it personal, alright. It’s been around since the 1970s, and it’s still loved for a reason. A newer company offering a similar kind of power is the Doxy massager. Popular around the world, it gives the Hitachi some real competition in terms of power and pleasure.
The Crescendo by Mystery Vibe is meant to be a vibrator that you can use alone or with a partner in a variety of positions. They suggest about 12 in total. Even better, you can use it with an app. But what makes the Crescendo really special is that it bends. That’s right, you can actually bend it to fit your body and how you want to play.
Hot Octopuss is the maker of the original “guybrator” — the Pulse III. It was designed for people with physical disabilities and/or erectile dysfunction. This powerful vibrator can get you hard with almost no effort on your part. People report explosive and powerful orgasms. If you don’t have a penis, you’re not left out. Hot Octopuss took their unique oscillating technology and put it in the Queen Bee, a clitoral stimulator.
Where else can you find amazing vibrators?