Quick Life Update

It’s been quite a while since I’ve shared anything on here.

Partly for negative reasons:

I’ve had two cats go through major illnesses and die this year. Stress always has a strong impact on my own health so I’ve had to slow down a lot to take care of myself while looking after them. It’s been heartbreaking since I love my cats very much!

Also, I’ve been dealing with someone I’d begun collaborating with on two major projects turning on me. This is someone I’d worked with several times before, who I’d considered a friend and whose work I greatly admired. This change in him came as a shock.

If you follow me on Twitter, you may have seen some tweets alluding to some new video content I was working on. This is the reason the content hasn’t been released yet.

Shortly after that shoot, I started getting creepy, threatening messages. About the shoot we’d just done. From the photographer.

Anyone who has met me in real life knows that all the erotic work I do in modeling and writing is backed up by a pretty healthy attitude toward sexuality in general. Meaning, I don’t find the human body or sexual desire (my own or that of other people) shameful. So, someone sending me messages trying to make me feel shame for shooting something I chose to do is very much failing to understand what makes me tick.

I would never have thought that someone I already had such a positive history with would change this much. We’ve all had bad clients, or shot with people we just don’t match up with well, but I have never had anyone hide their true colors so effectively for so long.

Obviously, I am not pleased with any of this, but there are good things going on too!

I have been working with a few new people and all those projects have been rewarding and helped fuel my creative energy.

I’m feeling well enough to start traveling again, so I am planning more work trips for the summer and fall.

And of course I have more writing planned for this blog. I’d like to start sharing more of my modeling work (although if you’re here for the dildo reviews, don’t worry, I’m not abandoning them entirely!) since I’m now focusing on projects I care about and that excite me creatively.

So, thanks for reading! My goals with writing have always been to entertain and educate so I will be back to my usual content soon!

Island Of Misfit Sex Toys – The Vibrator I Killed

I was all set to talk about another odd sex toy design, but you know what?

I learned something instead.

See, I’ve heard – probably more than once – that one should NEVER leave batteries in a toy. But I’ve done so plenty of times. In fact, my oldest vibrator (which, if I remember correctly, turns seven this year) has been left with batteries in for months at a time and is still going strong.

Well, I learned you actually should NOT leave batteries in!

See, this toy . . . this toy looked intriguing, so I got it. I tried it out once. ONCE. When I decided to start this series of posts I knew it was going to be one of the first things I discussed.

 

The toy in question is by California Exotics and is called . . . Body & Soul? Scintillation? Anyway, it’s an “Arousal pump for her”

 

However, one round of play is not at all sufficient for review purposes. Obviously, I was going to need to spend more time with it and take extensive notes*

And . . . yes, I know, “DON’T store your toys with batteries in them!” But I never really thought about it. I regularly leave batteries in, because I’m just going to play with it again, right?** Well, APPARENTLY this is the one that finally fell victim to my reckless ways. I thought the batteries had just died, but looking closer after they were out, I could see a bit of corrosion in the toy.

So, DO NOT LEAVE BATTERIES IN YOUR VIBRATORS. I now understand the wisdom of this rule.

As for the toy itself . . . well, based on one use I’d say it falls into the vast category of “Brilliant idea, needs further refinement.”

The thing that interested me was that this is a vibrator but also offers suction. A small, clit-centric area of suction. That sounded like it would feel great! And it did!

R.I.P. suction vibe thingy . . . we hardly knew ye.

As I suspected, the combination of suction and vibration was an all-around win for me. As you probably already know, suction increases blood flow to an area, which can make it more sensitive. Focusing it on the clit was indeed great! Two wonderful sensations combining to be extra-pleasurable!

But of course there was a downside – one big enough that I didn’t keep playing with this every single day after its initial run.

The downside was that this toy really needed to be held very precisely in place to work. Too much motion and the suction would be interrupted, and then getting it positioned correctly again took way too much precision to be done in the middle of playtime! I have little interest in having my attention diverted that way. I think I’d be happier with a partner using it on me, but we’ll never know now, will we?

Do the nubs make it look sort of like a cartoon lamprey? And does that make it sound more or less appealing?

The design of this toy was otherwise pretty good for me, with the handle being a decent length and the button easy to reach while I was using it. Aesthetically, I love the deep royal blue color.***

I’m totally down for trying out new suction toys though! If anyone has one they’d like to send my way, please do so! I promise I won’t kill it with neglect like it’s a houseplant!

As I was writing this I referred back to the box and instructions a few times.  Immediately after that I started reading the instruction booklet for another thing I am planning to write about.  This made me want to write about the very high level of fail present in sex-toy package inserts because it is A LOT OF FAIL.  So, that may be coming to this blog in the near future!  We’ll see!

 

* Which I do when I am planning to write about toys. Often, these notes are hilarious when I try to read them later.

** As of right now I have about . . . ten? vibrators. So even if I rotated through them carefully giving each one equal attention, the odds of me using any given one are . . . not great.

***I try not to express my disdain for pink in EVERY review, but seriously.

 

On Being Cheap

My last post about my toy hoarding tendencies made me think about the pros and cons of cheap vs. expensive toys.  I thought I’d sum up my thoughts on why, even though some of my favorites are super fancy, I am by no means a toy snob.

Cheap Toys – Pro:

1) Price =/= Quality

First off, “cheap” can mean “inexpensive” or it can mean “shoddy crap”. To make it clear, I am not pro-shoddy crap. I am more pointing out that it can be wrong to assume price indicates quality.

There are inexpensive toys out there that are just all-around great, like the Bootie I mention below. It can take some research to find them, but good inexpensive toys are out there.

Also of note is that a lot of expensive “luxury” toys are unfortunately not that great.

2) You have a chance to try out things you’re not sure about.

Sometimes, you are better off experimenting with an inexpensive version of a toy before you pay serious money for the pricier version.

Bootie!  This turned into . . .

My first anal plug was Fun Factory’s Bootie – I had never tried one before but after wearing the Bootie for a while I knew I liked it and wanted to try different sizes and materials. If I’d hated it, I would have been much less upset about tossing out a $20 toy than if I’d gone straight for the $$$$ jeweled metal plug that is now my fanciest one!

. . . this. Which is only part of my collection. No, I don’t have a problem.

 

On the other end of the spectrum is the rabbit. I got a cheap one and it’s just not a design that works for me at all. I could have guessed that, based on my usual habits, but I guess I just had to try one for myself given all the hype. There is no improvement that could be made on this design that would make it something I’d want, so I will never buy another one.

3) Some toys don’t NEED to be expensive.

Often, the “expensive version” HAS to be more expensive and you are better off saving and investing in that. Anything made of silicone, or medical-grade stainless steel, is going to cost more just because of the materials. Other materials, not so much. ABS plastic is a good example of this – it’s considered body-safe but costs way less than silicone. Another good example is nipple clamps. Sure, you COULD get 24 karat gold, but you don’t HAVE to.

ALSO – as I mentioned in my first point, “luxury” toys aren’t always that great. There are toys that are worth spending $100+ on, and there are those that just aren’t. (This is why independent reviewers are so important!)

And now, the CONS:

1) Mystery materials!

Is that really silicone? Will this give me an infection? Or chemical burns? Who knows!

NOPE.

It’s a patina. That means it’s fancy, right?

Sex toys are not regulated at all in the US, and anyone can call anything silicone. I have these scary ben wa balls that have oxidized – they’ve been stored in a plastic box and, well, look at that!  They’ve developed a green spot!  

The same set as the above picture, a little over a year later. NOPE.

Back before I knew better I tried a “jelly” dildo that gave me a chemical burn. Google around and you’ll find this is not an unusual experience!

 

 

So, you may not be getting what the toy claims it is, and you might not be getting a toy you should even use. This is not a problem you can completely solve by price alone, but it’s a starting point! $10 ‘silicone’ dildo on Amazon? NOPE. Don’t buy toys from Amazon, period. *

2)They Die 🙁

This is more a vibrator-specific one, but – confession time! – I have a pile of dead vibrators and it makes me sad. At least one of these probably bit the dust after I left batteries in it for too long, I’ll admit. But that is something you never even have to think about with rechargeables!

Dead toys, RIP

I personally don’t use TPE dildos** but some people like it as a material. No matter how you care for it, TPE does not last long so you have to throw out and replace toys made of it.

3) Bad Design

Again, this is not confined to the under $50 set AT ALL. But as far as sex toy design, well, sometimes it seems like things are designed by aliens who have never seen an actual human body. Everyone’s different, and even weird designs will find their fans. But there’s weird and then there’s just plain bad.

I think brands that really strive to cultivate a curated set of excellent products often spend more time in testing and tweaking their designs – there will never be a toy that works for everyone, but when more work and feedback goes into a toy it shows.

I love hearing about other people’s experience, so if you have a favorite affordable toy – or a story about one to avoid! – let me know in the comments!

 

*And if you are looking for sex toy information in general, Dangerous Lilly’s entire site is a wealth of information and worth reading!

** TPE is porous, which I consider an unsafe material. Some people are okay with this. Again, I suggest reading up on anything you’re going to put inside your body.

True Confession – I am a Toy Horder

I decided recently it would be a great idea to inventory and organize ALL my toys. I did not quite realize what that would entail until I was piling things on the bed and wondering if I’d left things over at someone else’s house*

I’ve amassed quite a collection of toys over the years. In my imagination what this should look like is:

I have a walk-in closet with excellent lighting that is filled to the brim with my collection, all on display in a way that suggests I hired a consultant who usually builds museum exhibits. When I desire a toy, I dramatically fling open the double doors, pause for a moment because I – yes, even I, the mistress of all these riches – am awestruck by the beauty of this room. I then sweep in, my silk robe swirling behind me, and drift from case to case carefully considering the merits of each item. So spoiled for choice am I that I often lose track of time and my partner has to bring in trays of fruit and cheese and a glass of wine to revive me so that I may continue gazing upon my domain.

What it actually means is, well. . . .

Behold! This is but a fraction of the Toy Hoard in all its jumbled glory!

Typing that out, it sounds like I’m so rich and/or spoiled I am practically swimming in sex toys which I turn up my nose at because the color doesn’t go with my décor, or the buttons aren’t exactly in the right place for me. That’s not exactly how those disorderly boxes came about.

I do have a lot of toys I love. So there are quite a few keepers. Of the second-string/reject pile, well. Some were gifts. Some were from when I used to review toys for an online entity I shall not name, and some represent a waste of money.

I had been sort of on the fence myself about cheap toys. So many are inexpensive but great – and some expensive and “high-end” toys are just crap.

I’ll have more to say about this next week. First I need to dig through that pile and organize them – by color, of course. So I can match them to my bedding, lingerie, and wall art. Because I am fancy.

Herr Zone looks on in dismay as he wonders, which of his friends will survive? Who will be honored with a review and googly eyes of his own?

* I did. I definitely did.

Modeling Notes – Christopher B Mooney

I haven’t talked much about modeling on this blog, but in “real life” I will very often work with someone and just love their art so much I tell everyone about them. It’s obvious I should start sharing some of the things I’ve been working on here!

Me, at work (In Christopher’s studio)

Painter Christopher B Mooney’s body of work tends to focus on two subjects: bridges and erotica. This is not the non-sequitur it might seem at first; as he points out in his artist’s statement, both are at their core about connection.*

One of the most interesting things about working with painters is that it can be years before the work you’ve done together is ready. Sometimes I never see the end result. My work with Christopher has been much different in that regard; he’s always given me the reference photos he takes for my own use. The distinctive colored lighting alone makes some of these images look more like paintings themselves, which I love.

His canvases tend to be quite large – often 4’ by 5’ – so seen in person they can be an immersive experience. His erotic work has a tender, intimate feel to it, a casual voyeurism similar to watching a lover when they’re not aware of your gaze.

His use of red and blue studio lighting gives the world he depicts a bright, hyper-reality. The style is realistic, but the contrasting cool and warm tones play with your vision. The entire experience is like being in a peepshow designed by someone with extensive classical arts training.

Christoper and I have worked together twice now. If he ever decides to combine his two main subjects and paint nude women caught in intimate moments with bridges I hope he asks me to participate!  You can see more of Mooney’s erotic paintings here, but I also suggest looking through his other work while you’re browsing!

Passion, oil on canvas Christopher B Mooney

* HTTP://www.christopherbmooneystudios.com/about.html

Island of Misfit Toys – The Zone

Some toy designs don’t quite work for my anatomy.

Reviews will now include googly eyes. For reasons.

Some toy designs look like the MILLIONTH variation on a classic. And some toy designs make me stop and ask, “What even IS this?”

This is a new series devoted to that last category. Welcome to the Island Of Misfit Sex Toys

The Zone came to me from a sex shop’s clearance bin. I’m pretty sure it was discontinued because people looked at it, said, “What even IS this?” and then bought something else. I, on the other hand, will try just about anything* and guess what? Guess what? This thing was WAY better than I expected.

The first challenge was figuring out how, exactly, the Zone was supposed to work. It’s shaped something like a lavender version of a 50’s Sci Fi film prop. It has three legs of hard plastic, one of which has two buttons on it, and a central cone-shaped part of ribbed silicone. This is the part that vibrates, so of course I tried putting it in my vagina first thing, because that’s just how things are done around here. That was neither ergonomically correct, nor was it particularly pleasing. Nope.

Next, I tried setting Zone in a chair, and sitting on it so my thighs held the two button-free legs down and the rocket was against my vulva. Much better.  The feet originally had rubbery nubs on them to keep this toy from sliding around, but I can’t show you since they popped off and got lost pretty quickly. Point is, this toy is meant to be sat on, and that is it.

That limits this toys use – it’s only really usable in the one position, and I am pretty sure it will only work for people who have vulvas. BUT. BUT. A truly hands- free toy I can use while sitting? Perfect for me! Most “hands-free” toys I’ve tried need to be constantly re-positioned, or held in place, making them . . . not hands-free. Or else, they are just too weak to cause any orgasms. I am 100% willing to ignore the lack of versatility the Zone brings to the table because having a vibrator that stays in place and can actually do more than gently tease is great.

Also good for kink play! Since apparently this was meant specifically to be used while sitting in a chair, that means it can be used on people who are tied to a chair. Yes, tied to a chair. Where they cannot escape. And then you can adjust the speed and make it even more difficult to endure.**

Now, this is not a desert island toy for me, and its shortcomings are way beyond the weird design. It’s battery-powered, and lately I have been much happier with rechargeable toys. It’s not as high-quality as one might hope, since as noted above the feet already lost their nubs, and the buttons feel flimsy. I have no doubt that I will one day kill this toy.

So, if I do kill it, would I go track down another? Maybe? While I was considering the various hallmarks of cheapness the Zone does have, I was also wondering if this is the kind of thing I would want to spend more on, if someone were to come out with a high-end version. I most likely would, although I am also dying to try one of the bolster-type things you can put your Hitachi in. Maybe that would work even better for me!

*Within reason, people. If you have any particularly outlandish ideas, please consult Can I Fuck The Thing? first.

** Yes, I am totally speaking from experience here.

My Son, Who is a Cat

The other day, I decided I wanted a spiffy new header image so I pulled out various items with the idea that I could arrange a still life.  It would be a nice casual arrangement of things related to my life and my identity that would look arty and cool like the stuff I see on Tumblr*.

I had momentarily forgotten about the OTHER thing you see all over the internet.

Snacks? Any snacks? Asking for a friend.

Snacks? Any snacks? Asking for a friend.

Somehow, despite having about 20 or so cats**, I rarely post pictures of them.  They feel left out.  So Azrael (seen above) decided there was NO WAY he was going to let me neglect him.

He knows he's handsome.

He knows he’s handsome.

I decided to get a few pictures of him, because – well, look at him.

Go ahead and try this at home if you want.  But be prepared for some singed whiskers.

Go ahead and try this at home if you want. But be prepared for some singed whiskers.

He really did not want to move, so I went ahead and set stuff up around him.

Not just a handsome man, but the most handsome man.

Not just a handsome man, but the *most* handsome man.

And then I told him he HAD TO move, since even though I love cats and sex toys, having them in the same picture seemed a little creepy.

"Hey mom, what's going on here?"

“Hey mom, what’s going on here?”

So I tried to get a picture while he was out of the frame.  And, being a cat, he knew this and refused to stay out of the frame.

img_20161014_121208

Fine, I’ll crop it. We’re done here.

Finally, I got this one, and realized that blurry ears in the corner was the smallest amount of cat that was going to be possible and called it a day.  Sure, I could have locked him out of the room, but I’m not a monster.  And that is your exclusive behind-the-scenes look at my creative process, and Azrael’s part in it.

Stay tuned next week for “Oh God, How is There Cat Hair on This Dildo Already I Just Washed it?!?!?!?” (part 1 in a 34987 part series)

*OR SO I THOUGHT

**This is a slight exaggeration.  Maybe.

Review – Fun Toys G Ring and G Plug

Today I have a few toys from Fun Toys, a company that is completely new to me. I’d heard of them through other toy reviewers, but never tried out one of their products.

First, some background: I’ve had awful luck with remote vibes. Batteries that run down too fast. Apps that just plain won’t work. And my personal most hated: the remote that only works from six inches away pointed directly at the vibrator, and can be foiled by the thinnest of underpants. What is the point of even making it a remote?

I was excited to try out the G Ring and G Plug from Fun Toys as a set, since it’s not just another version of remote controlled toys – the G Ring works as both a remote control for the G Plug, and as a vibrator by itself.

My first impressions of these toys were positive. Packaging is nowhere near as important as the toy inside, but I do think good packaging shows attention to detail,

and if I am in a shop it does play a part in what I notice first and what I am drawn to pick up. The canisters these toys come in have an image of the toy on one side and a pretty drawing on the other. They’re sturdy so you could use them for storage later. Inside, you get a storage pouch (which I did not like much; the fabric it’s made from feels cheap) a USB charger, and an instruction booklet.

The toys themselves are attractive and certainly have a luxurious feel. They are coated in velvety smooth silicone and come in dark blue and pink. (of course I got the dark blue. I would be pleased never to see a pink toy again in my life) They are rechargeable

I got the plug in a large size, which honestly does not seem that large to me. I img_20160825_123602don’t consider myself someone who needs HUGE butt toys, but there you are. Your mileage may vary! The actual measurements are 5” around, 4” long with 1” of that length being the neck. This plug has a very slim neck, which I like for longer term wear. It’s also in my preferred teardrop shape. The base is relatively small (about an inch and a half across) which I also think lends itself well to wearing under clothing and for longer times. For me, this was a comfortable plug to wear.

Because it had been such an issue with other remote toys, the first thing I did was a clothing test. Will this remote be what I want it to? I put on some yoga pants on to see if the G ring would still work. It did! This is a major plus for me. (as a side note, you can also turn off the vibration function on the G-ring and use it solely as a remote)

picture-36Happy though I was with the remote function of the Ring, vibration is very important to me as well. It fit on my finger well, snug enough not to fall off easily but not too tight. I have to say, as a clitoral vibrator, this was not particularly great. I enjoy more rumbly feelings, and like to cover more area. This was comparable to other finger vibes I have tried, so I cannot recommend it solely as a vibrator based on my own experience. People who like gentler vibrations might find it more enjoyable. It’s a neat idea, but when it comes down to it this isn’t the toy I’d be reaching for if I really want an orgasm.

Both of these have a variety of patterns but I generally don’t go in for those. I like speed variation, but cycling through 6 different patterns is annoying to me. (Does anyone love the patterns? Let me know!)

Also, the buttons are hard to use while this is in action as a vibrator. The img_20160701_121631placement is accessible but once there’s any kind of lube or bodily fluid on them it’s difficult to press them, particularly since they are small and close together. I can’t see any way the design could have worked around this at all. It’s too small to place them anywhere else, really.

I decided I should do a good old endurance test of these as well. After a full charge, turned on at full power, the G-Ring lasted for 45 minutes and the plug for an hour and 15 minutes. Not bad at all!

Overall, I would say this set feels like an excellent idea that didn’t quite make it in practice. The design is beautiful and luxurious, I found the plug comfortable, and having a remote that is also a vibrator is brilliant. The remote function worked well for me and was superior to so many other remotes.  So much was right about this but ultimately it was a good but not great toy for me.

Disclaimer: The G Ring and G Plug were provided to me free of charge by Fun Toys in exchange for an honest and unbiased review.

G Ring and G Plug

Return of the Blog

I’ve been gone a while, since 2016 has not worked out to be anything like I expected.

It seems like everyone I know started this year off looking forward to it being the best one yet. Optimism was everywhere and we all had great plans because after a lackluster 2015 this was finally our year.

And then it wasn’t. As for myself, I moved to a different state and then suddenly had painful messy relationship issues that turned into a painful messy breakup. To say the least, it was a little too much for me to handle all at once so I spent a couple of months massively depressed and not able to do much at all.

I am finally feeling better. I’ve missed writing and I’ve missed interacting with other people. I’m becoming more social, I’m lining up new photography work, and I have a very interesting set of toys to review.

At this point, I know I don’t have any regular readers yet; that takes time and consistent posting and this blog had had neither! I wanted to mention why I’d been gone for so long anyway. It feels weird to have just started something and then before getting any kind of momentum to be so utterly flattened by life.

It’s hard to get back up and keep going.  But I want to, so I will.

And soon I’ll have another thrilling review of Things That Go In Holes for you!

New Year, Same Boring Old Me

Ha ha! No, seriously though – I’m not much of one for New Year’s resolutions, but this past year has been so sad for this blog.  My posts average out to less than one a month!

I have toys I want to review, but I also have a lot of personal things I want to write about.  It’s nearly impossible for me to want to play and then report back about it when I have things weighing on my mind, and that has been holding me back.  So this will be much more of a mix.  I had wanted to avoid that, since I felt like a blog should really have a focus lest it turn into a rambling diary sort of thing, but guess what!  All the personal stuff going on with me is sex-related in some way!  So I will still be on topic!