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Become a Reviewer – Part 4 – Vlogging vs Blogging

This past weekend I was contacted by the lovely Pantophile Panic, who was seeking some advice on getting into the wonderful world of sex toy reviewing. More specifically, vlogging and blogging

Kara_Sutra, Pantophile Pantic, Twitter, Q&A, Vlogging vs Blogging

After realizing it took me 4 full DM’d speech bubbles on twitter just to answer one question, not thoroughly enough or the way I wanted to, I thought it would be easier to do a Q&A with her on vlogging vs blogging since I’ve had experience with both… so here we are, 19ish questions later.

For as much as I wanted to, I’ve decided that instead of doing all 19 questions in one piece, I’m splitting this in three parts. 9ish questions in this part, 9ish questions in the next, and another that answers a question on tips and concerns. As you can likely tell by the length of this post, I talk, or write depending on how you look at it, way too much.

At least it’s an easy read. Promise!

What are the best and worst parts of video reviewing?

I’m not going to lie, one of the best parts of video reviewing is seeing the video views climb and watching the hits on my website rise, though it’s not for the reason most would think. Sure, the attention is nice, especially when the majority of comments come from viewers you’ve seen pop up time and time again in support of you and what you do, but instead because to me that means I’m reaching people and having an effect.

At the end of the day if I’ve made one more person aware of a better sex toy manufacturer or retailer, helped someone realize it’s time to toss that stank jelly toy, educated on the benefits of eco-friendly sex toys, or provided the info someone needed to feel confident and okay in their sexuality (my Sex Ed 102 videos specifically), then I’ve done my job and achieved the goal I set for myself. Feeling like I’m a positive force in the community, one that’s working towards a greater good is worth its weight in gold, or sex toys as the case may be.

Also… working with people I admire, receiving thank you notes from viewers saying I saved the from buying something unsafe, seeing the finished product and the way it fills me with a sense of pride, and building friendships with my viewers are priceless things I wouldn’t trade. There’s been many times over the past few years where I’ve let my vulnerabilities show, only to have them welcomed with open arms and unconditional support. It’s nice to know that over for every troll I’ve had to deal with over the years there’s been at least another 20 kick ass individuals that have had my back. That’s an amazing feeling.

The worst… the trolls, the countless hours of editing only to have your software crash before saving, forgetting to charge something like a battery before hand, spilling water on your notes that you wrote in marker, so they bleed and leave you with damn near nothing to go from. Having a video not turn out the way you expected (too much glare, out of focus, etc), feeling unprepared even though you’ve spent the last 4 hours getting everything ready, dealing with censorship. Feeling like it’s a numbers game, as in – each video must get higher views then the last or else! (it’s such bullshit). Being interrupted by a ringing phone mid sentence, the trolls, that moment when you’ve been talking for 5 minutes only to realize the camera isn’t on. Knowing that you will be judged by someone, somewhere, simply because you’re talking about sex or sex toys. Feeling like the video you’ve created isn’t good enough even though 9 times out of 10 it is (oh, that shitty little voice in my head, how I loathe thee!). Creating the video, taking far too many hours to edit it, thinking you’re done… only realize you forgot to cover something exceptionally important. Talking as if you have marbles in your mouth, for no good reason (again, blooper vids!). Did I mention the trolls?

Should I both write a written review and make a video for each product to accommodate people who prefer one vs the other?

At the end of the day what you do is entirely up to you, but in my opinion if you can manage it, do both.

The video doesn’t need to be long unless you want it to be. The written portion doesn’t need to be long unless you want it to be. But doing both is definitely a good idea. There’s a reason YouTube videos are so popular… I’ll probably catch some slack for this but I think most people don’t want to make any real effort if they don’t have to. The majority of our days are spent working to put food on the table, a roof over our heads, clothes on our backs, and dildos in our drawers. After someone busts their ass for 9+ hours the last thing they want to do is sit down and do something that requires them to think. If you ask people to watch a video that’s 10 minutes in length, or read a review that will take them 10 minutes, both covering the exact same content, 9 times out of 10 they’ll choose to watch the video. It’s just easier.

My point? The more content you can offer to the sex-centric melting pot, the better.

Do you recommend video reviewing vs traditional blogging?

The short answer, not entirely.

The long answer…

Over the past 6 years the landscape of the internet has changed quite drastically. Some say blogging is dead, however I think it’s starting to really take off, especially in the sex positive community. Yes, I know, sex bloggers have been here all along… but here’s the thing, now more than ever sex ed is far more accessible, unbiased, open minded, all-inclusive of gender, race, and sexual orientation, up to and including the use of sex toys. It’s shifting towards being pleasure centered rather than penis-goes-in-vagina-this-is-how-you-make-a-baby or vibrators-go-in-a-vagina-and-NOTHING-goes-in-your-butt type of thinking. And that’s important.

Of course there are benefits of each…

Written content will help build your SEO in a way videos can’t, give you the opportunity to talk about things you might not want to on camera (i.e. your personal experience), allow a space to place text and banner ads so you can hopefully make an income, provide a place you can upload photos and make everything work together seamlessly in one place, and keep you safe from censorship or being shut down.

Videos on the other hand will grant you a much wider reach, make your content easier to find, likely be viewed more than a written review, offer a completely different and much more relevant way to show the product off (seeing someone hold a vibrator gives them a better idea of the size etc then seeing it in a picture), potentially make money (if you can monetize views), and get to know the person behind the reviews – you – in a far more personal way.

Which do you enjoy more personally?

To be honest, I love them both for very different reasons, with the written element coming in slightly ahead. The videos help get my content out there and are much more fun to create, but the written aspect is mine. Let me explain…

When I first started reviewing I just did videos and was totally happy with that. But as my videos started to gain regular views in the tens of thousands I found there were far too many people that judged, ridiculed, posted crappy comments, and acted like juvenile asshats. That’s when I decided to include the written element as an outlet for my personal experiences; rather than voluntarily airing my goings on with the world, I saved them for my blog. It was where I felt protected and safe to say what I wanted, without having to deal with a shit tonne of immaturity or negativity. My videos became less of a ‘review’ and more of a ‘product feature’ to compliment my writing, my blog became my own little corner of the internet. If someone really wanted to know what it was like they could go read about it on my site, if they didn’t that was their choice. Either way, I covered all of the bases and had two bodies of work that made me feel proud and accomplished.

How do you work with affiliates when reviewing a video, do you leave their links in the video description? Give them a verbal thank you?

This is something you’ll want to work out with each company you work with but for the most part, I’d include 2 links to their site within the video (one unaffiliated, one affiliated), a link to them in the description bar (affiliated), and a thank you within the video. Anyone that sends you a toy to review and an affiliate program to make a bit of money deserves some respect, and thank yous are always nice.

Here’s my one little warning: anything you put in the video will remain there forever. Even if you don’t work with the company anymore. Even if they kill their affiliate account. Even if they turn out to be assholes that you’d never want to work with again. I repeat, anything you put in the video will remain there forever. Be careful who you choose to work with and what you choose to include in your videos, once it’s online there’s no way to fix it. Sure you can pull the video down, re-edit it, and re-upload it, but that’s a major pain in the ass, especially if it’s a video with a high view count.

Would you say having a YouTube channel increases traffic to your website at all? By how much?

Yes. Most definitely, yes. Days when I upload videos I’ll see an immediate spike in traffic on my websites, social media, and an increase in sales on ShopSexEd102.com. But that’s me, and I’ve been at it for 6 years. Unfortunately I can’t specifically say how much it will increase your traffic because that’s dependent on a variety of things; your view counts, how well you use the various opportunities for being found (linking, social media, tags, annotations, proper video labeling, etc), whether the content your covering is something people are interested in, how many subscribers you have, how many videos you have, how credible you seem etc. It’s different from person to person, but in the long run it will definitely help.

I don’t want to remain completely anonymous as a blogger. I want to be able to show people, and say “look at what I created.” People have suggested that I only do toy reviews while wearing a mask, or a wig and contacts. Disguise myself. I don’t want to do that. What are your feelings about that?

If you don’t want to do that, then don’t. The world needs more people that are willing to talk about sex in an open and transparent way, who are fearless when it comes to changing the game, who have a passion for what they do, take pride in it, aren’t ashamed, embarrassed, or scared of having their faces seen. Not that I have a problem with those that do, I understand more than many the importance of anonymity, but the more visible those within the sex positive community become, the better for everyone.

End.

So that’s it for this part of the Vlogging vs Blogging Q&A! Thanks to Pantophile Panic for getting in touch and asking such thought provoking questions, you can find her website here. I suggest you take a gander at her eye opening post on the dangers of toxic jelly sex toys. All I can say is Ouch!

For those of you just getting into reviews, be it vlogging, or blogging, hopefully all the info I packed in didn’t overwhelm you. ‘Cause Lord knows, that’s the last thing I want to do.

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Sex Ed 102 Q&A – Vaginal Odor, Douching, & Feminine Hygiene

Question:

I’ve been watching your videos for a while now and would like some help with a problem I’m having with my girlfriend, frankly: her vagina smells. I bought her douche kits, have made her take a bath before sex, even suggested she try using deodorants “down there”. She doesn’t like it either, but she doesn’t seem to do much to fix it. I will be honest, our sex life has even started to suffer since I don’t like the way she smells. I don’t want to make her douche every time we have sex… but I don’t know what else to do. We have been together for quite a few years now and it just seems to keep getting worse. Is there anything I can do?

Answer: Vaginal Odor, Douching, & Feminine Hygiene

Thanks for watching and supporting what I do.

Before I get started please understand every woman has her own body chemistry and hormones that contribute to the way she smells and tastes. Regardless of how healthy she eats, how much time she spends scrubbing her genitals, or the choices she makes both in and out of the bedroom, she is going to have her own unique scent. That’s just how it goes.

As for my suggestions, first and foremost: stop making her douche! The vagina is not meant to be flushed with harsh chemicals or detergents. That’s probably the WORST thing you could suggest she do.

I’m pretty sure this is probably the first time you’ve heard that, so let me explain how things work…

The vagina has a naturally acidic pH level (healthy vaginal pH sits around 3.8 to 4.5 out of 14) that takes care of all the bad bacteria via discharge – fluid from glands inside the vagina and cervix – which carries away dead cells and bacteria, keeping the vagina clean and helping to prevent infection. When a person douches they wash away both the good and bad bacteria. Now with the good bacteria removed, the vagina is a perfect environment for the bad bacteria that enters to take over and run rampant.

With that in mind, she doesn’t need to use heavy soaps, detergents, creams, cloths, or sprays. Mild soap and water will suffice for external cleaning of the vulva.

My second suggestion is to bring up the option of 100% cotton underwear as it will allow her body to breathe and reduce the amount of sweat present, which will also hopefully result in less of a vaginal odor. Aside from that, it would be a good idea to limit the amount of tight synthetic material, thongs, and g-strings she wears as they trap bacteria and can bring on the potential for infection.

If she uses deodorant on her vagina I suggest she stop. That, like douching, can equal a recipe for disaster; the body sweats for a reason. By applying deodorant to her vulva/vagina she can not only increase the chance of infection, but also confuse her body and force it to overcompensate in other ways.

I’d also suggest talking to her about seeing a doctor as the cause of the smell might be due to an infection like bacterial vaginosis (caused by an imbalance of naturally occurring bacterial flora).

Some common causes of Bacterial Vaginosis

  • Douching – using water or a medicated solution to clean the vagina
  • Having a bath with antiseptic liquids
  • Having a new sex partner
  • Having multiple sex partners
  • Perfumed bubble baths and some scented soaps
  • Smoking
  • Using an IUD (intrauterine device), such as a contraceptive device made from plastic and copper that fits inside the uterus
  • Using vaginal deodorants
  • Washing underwear with strong detergents or change of laundry detergent

Among other natural causes, Bacterial Vaginosis may occur from semen entering the vagina and throwing off the natural pH balance. That said, if you’ve been having unprotected sex, stop. After she has seen a doctor and knows that she’s free and clear of an infection, or has been successfully treated for one, go back to using condoms to limit the semen that comes into contact with her vagina (unless your trying to conceive of course).

The last thing I want to bring up on this topic is that the way that you choose to discuss it with her and the words you choose to use will have a direct impact on her as a person and a lover;

If you go to her in a loving way, with kind words, the offer to help and be willing to learn all that you can (even possibly help pay for medication or cotton undies) she will be more willing to oblige and attempt to “fix the problem”.

If you go at her in an angry, disgusted, frustrated, turned off, embarrassed or rude manner, I can pretty much guarantee that you will not only offend and hurt her, but also create a situation where she feels embarrassed and ashamed of her vagina and in turn her sexuality. She will think of her vagina as “dirty”, “gross”, or “shameful”, and likely not want to put out… and when she does, she will be less than enthusiastic and probably wont enjoy it very much. Trust me, I hear it all the time.

On that note, please also try to understand that for most women their vulva/vagina is a very touchy subject. Most are raised in a society that teaches us to believe that our sexuality, body parts, and sex itself, are things we shouldn’t speak about and should hide away from others;

  • we are taught to use words like “private parts” in reference to our genitals, a seemingly innocent choice of wording that only further instills this belief.
  • depending on the culture a female has been raised, she could be taught to think that her vagina is “foul”, “disgusting”, “gross”, “dirty”, “nasty”, and all those other words associated with the things we shouldn’t want to touch or talk about.
  • daily we are bombarded by mainstream media promoting products that “help” women to feel “fresh”, “clean”, and smell like “flowers” or “summer rain”. These companies do nothing more then make millions by continually misleading the mass viewing public and cause unknowing females to believe that their vaginas are not self cleaning and instead shouldn’t smell the way they do.

Basically, the vulva/vagina is something that not very many women are comfortable talking about… let alone their own genitals.

Be conscious and conscientious with your choice in wording and how to choose to deal with the situation, and understand that by bringing it up you could be hitting a really vulnerable issue for her.

If your relationship is important to you, I suggest that you take the time necessary to understand the way the female body works and learn as much as you can. Unfortunately, due to the corporations that solely exist to make society think vaginas are “dirty”, we are taught to think that there is really only one option, when instead, there are many.

I hope that this helps you understand that there is nothing wrong with her or the way she smells and provided you with options to think about.

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First Time Sex: Erection Issues

premature-264x300Question :

Hi!

I’ve just recently found your videos and I’m hooked! You’re adorable and so fun to watch. But anyway, I was hoping you could help me out with a problem I’m having.

I’ve been with my boyfriend for a little over 2 months now. And in those two months we’ve done pretty much everything but intercourse. Keep in mind we’re both virgins. Today we both decided to take the next step and have sex. Well that did not work out at all.

Penis erect, condom on, attempt to insert… and fail.
It just would not go in. And then… erection gone.

I knew I’d be tight so we even agreed that he would kind of prep me with one finger… then two.  But even just two fingers is tight. He WAS having a problem keeping it up (not the norm for him) Maybe nerves? So it maybe could have been hard but not hard enough? Could the addition of lube helped at all?

Any advice would be great.

Thanks

Answer:

First of all thanks for watching my vids!!

As for the questions, what you went through is completely normal.  I hear it all the time so dont be too worried.

For your part, the fingering was a very good idea and usually helps. It may have been that you were nervous and tensed up when he went to insert his penis, causing you to “tighten” up. It could also be that you werent “wet” enough for an “easy” insertion. For next time you may want to do what you did previously with the fingering, add some lube and try to relax. Dont let this be something that makes you nervous or scared, instead make it something that is enjoyable and exciting.

As for his part, he was probably very nervous about “failing” you. There seems to be a huge difference when it comes to males and females and sexually pleasing their partners. Women aren’t expected to do very much, or so it seems, however there is a lot of pressure placed on males to “perform” and have their partner orgasm. (By the way, if you don’t have an orgasm during intercourse it’s completely normal, that may just come in time) For him this was/is going to be a defining moment of his “manhood”, and there is a lot to go wrong.

  • He could go soft
  • He could orgasm too soon
  • He could go on for too long
  • He could be too big and it could hurt you
  • He could be too small and not enough to please you
  • He could get it in but then not know what to do with it
  • Not to mention the list of other fears/doubts/anxiety that go through a males head.

When it comes to sex, especially first time sex, there is so much to think about. The best advice I can give is to be supportive and let him know that it’s okay no matter what happens and that when it’s meant to happen it will. Let him know that if he goes soft it’s normal, especially for the first time, and that you don’t judge him for it.

Also in the future, if he does go soft you can always do other things to help him regain his erection like give him oral sex or manual stimulation (hand job). Or if he’s willing to wait it out, you can have him stimulate you until he is ready again.

If you’d like a better understanding of what’s going on, and possibly some products that might be helpful, I suggest giving these articles a read:

 

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Homemade Sex Toys: What You Need To Know

I hate to say it, but I don’t make a habit of offering up household items you can masturbate with.  Don’t get me wrong, I know there are a lot of people who have limited options making things they find around the house seem rather appealing, but if someone isn’t sure of what they’re doing there’s a chance they could unintentionally harm themselves, or worse, do some serious physical damage.

That in mind, when I took on the responsibility of educating the masses about sex it included keeping them safe. In an attempt to help you avoid doing any harm while still learning about your body, here are some tips and ideas that might prove helpful, including a list of things I think would be okay for personal use whether you’re playing alone or with a partner.

Household Items You Can Masturbate With - banner image

 Approved Household Items You Can Masturbate With

For those with vulvas/vaginas

Household Items You Can Masturbate With - Cucumber

Fruits and vegetable are a great free option; only use vegetables that are ripe (no rotten, mushy, or soft spots, ), pliable, and have a smooth surface like a Cucumber, Zucchini, Banana, or Carrot  – again, make sure the ends aren’t sharp or pokey, wash them beforehand to remove any pesticides or other harmful chemicals, and use a condom.

If you don’t want to use fruits or vegetables but like that they’re discreet, there are vibrating corn and cucumbers as well as a product called the ‘emojibater‘ (its the eggplant emoji) that could be fun to play with.  If you want something a little more chill, why not go for a Popsicle dildo.  There’s also a bunch of fun food inspired sex toys by Hole Punch Toys; from radish butt plugs to an ‘ass cream cone‘.  Of course these aren’t items you’ll find lying around your house, but if you’re looking for totally discreet body safe options, they’re some of the best.

Note: don’t stick stuff fruits and veg in your rear, they don’t have a flared base to stop them from going so deep you can’t get them out… Yes, they can get stuck or lost. Yes, I’m serious.

Dilator Sets

Long tapered candles can be fun to explore with, especially if you find ones that have differing thickness. I’d also suggest opting for something with a higher melting point; soy based products tend to soften quickly which might make the difficult to insert, use, and remove. I’d also suggest staying away from anything scented or containing oils since there is no way to tell if the ingredients could be potentially harmful and the oils will break down a condom. Finally, definitely use a condom with candles; if it melts it could leave residual wax inside you that will be hard to remove.

Brush handle, rounded ones work best, try to avoid any with seams as they could cut or scrape you internally. You could also opt for a make up brush handle – usually you can find them in kits offering different sizes to play with (good for a vaginal dilator option). Try snagging something with a rounded base, rather than square or pointed, as it would make insertion easy and far more comfortable. I’d also advise looking for options that have thicker handles as you’d be less likely to accidentally hurt yourself (thinner brushes have more potential for being ‘poked’ internally). Also, opt for one that doesn’t have any writing on the handle as it could rub off inside you.

DIY Vibrators

Household Items You Can Masturbate With - Personal Massager VibratorPersonal Massager for clitoral or vulva stimulation.  Very often users don’t know what type of vibrations they like, be it deep and rumbly or surface level and buzzy,  opting to start with something familiar gives you the chance to explore without breaking the bank.

Electric Toothbrushs; the handle for insertion, the gentle or soft bristles for clitoral stimulation. Just keep in mind most of the newer versions have detachable brush heads. Not a good idea to insert the brush end as it could fall off while inserted. Don’t worry, it can’t get lost forever. Getting it out might prove time consuming and annoying though.

household items you can masturbate withThat said, when thinking about this type of stimulation I highly suggest going small and cheap to start; a ‘Facial Massage Tool‘ (really, it’s a Pocket Rocket) or a bullet vibe  are perfect options. Not only are they discreet and affordable, they provide a high level of vibration for a decent price. If you try them and find them too surface level, maybe it would be worth it to spend more on a Whal Deep Tissue Massager or a Magic Wand (a.k.a. Hitachi Magic Wand, the one that started it all).  You can usually find cheap ones at local dollar stores. If you’re struggling to find anything Amazon usually has quite a few options available.

The vibration of a cell phone or gaming controller (external; vulva, clitoris, labia etc). In most cases the vibrations won’t be as strong as a typical vibrator, but if your sensitive (or just learning about your body) they could be enough.

Shower Play

Household items you can masturbate with - shower headMassaging Shower Head while bathing. Snag one that has a long cord and a variety of settings to offer different types of stimulation. Looking for something a little more fun, you could opt for a light up version.

Running water from the bathtub faucet; just lie on your back and let the water run over the vulva and clitoris. Opt for times where there won’t be any unexpected temperature fluctuations (burning your bits isn’t fun… been there, done that).  Also, it’s free which is definitely a good thing.

The washing machine while it’s on the “spin” cycle. You can sit on it or press your clitoris up against the corner for stimulation. It’s not the best in terms of vibration, but it might work for some.

For Those Withe Penises

Fruit & Veggies

Household items you can masturbate withCarved out fruit or vegetables are a great way to explore different sensations and textures.  Avoid highly acidic fruits like oranges, lemons, and limes, as they could irritate the urethral opening at the tip of the penis. I’d also avoid anything that has seeds as they can sometimes be sharp, leading to painful small scrathes and abrasions; scooping out the seeds first is a good idea.  Everything considered, you’d be good to go with any of the following;

  • Due to their maneuverability and shape, melons are a top choice; honeydew, cantaloupe, and small watermelons will work once the seeds are scooped out. If you have weak arms or have a had time holding things a melon could be easily placed on a surface (bed, table, counter, couch) while penetrated (if you cut one side flat it’ll sit in place easier and won’t roll).
  • A grapefruit can easily be made into a stroker; simply cut the fruit into thick rings, remove the center (you’re basically creating a donut) and slide it up and down your shaft.  Side note, if you cut the fruit too thin it will last for a few strokes before falling apart. Also, try to avoid the tip of your penis is the acidity could be irritating.

Pillows etc

Couch cushions, mattress folds, and pillows can be easily manipulated to create different types of pressure.  Simply put a condom on, sandwich you penis between the objects, and go to it. I’ve heard that this works best if you’re either on your knees (between the mattress and box spring) or lying on your stomach (which adds to the pressure). Make sure that if you go this route you use things that can easily be washed; i.e. don’t use couch cushions where the cover can’t be removed.

You can make a pocket pussy out of various objects (simple instructions here, you can find more via Google).

Playing With Textures

Bubble wrap, considering all the different types available the options are almost endless. You can either cut a long strip and roll it up in a tube shape (so that there are layers) to create a stroker of sorts.  If that doens’t work try cutting a section, placing in your hand, and rubbing it up and down your shaft.  Just keep in mind that you’ll likely need a good lube to avoid uncomfortable friction or pulling of the skin on your penis.

Bubble Wrap - household items you can masturbate withLarge plastic cup filled with pudding, jello, etc. A few things to note, both of these options are rather messy, and if left to dry without cleaning will get sticky. Also, depending on the type of jello you use it could stain fabrics. If you’re prone to yeast infections, opt for sugar free.

Line a plastic cup with two thick kitchen sponges add some lube and you’re good to go. Just remember to use the soft non-scratch side of the sponge… otherwise, ouch.

Gloves are an option too, though depending on the type you get there could be some pulling or chaffing. I’d suggest dish gloves or silicone oven mitts, and LOTS of lube (try playing with different textures). On that note, any type of fabric will likely absorb lube so you’ll need plenty. Also, colored gloves might temporarily stain body parts. Keep that in mind when stroking.

Socks or leg warmers (experiment with different textures, thicknesses, and lengths).

For Couples

Although this section doesn’t specifically cover household items you can masturbate with, it will offer up a whole bunch of ways you and your partner(s) can play with things you find around the house.

For those with limited mobility, back issues, or needing a little extra support, try opting for a large body pillow, firm pillows, a rolled up comforter or sleeping bag. They all work great when it comes to propping you up and exploring different positions.  More than that, they’re much cheaper than Liberator Sex Furniture.  If you expect to be kneeling all these options will work, as do knee pads designed for gardening and foam kneeling pads (added bonus: depending on the size, the latter are also fun to try and spank with).

Different sensations on erogenous zones can go a long way for heightening arousal and getting the juices flowing; ice cubes, feathers, electrostatic and micro fiber dusters, Wartenberg Pinwheels, fake flowers, and soy candles (they tend to have a lower melting point so there’s less of a chance you’ll get burned) can be fun to explore with.

BDSM

If you’re into spankings you’re in luck, simple things from around the house are often readily available or easy to find at very affordable prices; from spatulas (opt for silicone or wood) to paddle shaped cutting boards, wooden spoons, to leather belts (never hit anyone with the buckle, if possible see if you can remove it), stationary rulers (again, opt for plastic or wood over metal and make sure the edges aren’t sharp), flip flops and shoes of various sizes (make sure they’re clean), to books of different shapes and sizes (paperback feels different than a hardcover), and of course gloved hands, there are tonnes of options if you think outside the box.

*Make sure your partner is okay with the products being used, and check in regularly during play to ensure it’s still consensual.

Neck ties, belts with double-d rings, skipping rope, and scarves can all be used to restrain your partner. Again, make sure this is something they are okay with and have scissors handy just in case you’re unable to easily release them. On that note, don’t use any special knots or tie them too tightly; rope burn and the inability to untie a partner can be a painful and stressful situation if not properly prepared.

 


 Tips & Suggestions

  • Always make sure the product you’re using is clean and in proper working order; i.e. no deep scratches, broken parts, jagged edges, wobbly pieces, has no smell or caked on dirt, missing parts etc.
  • DO NOT use things like pens, pencils, or markers as they could leak the ink/dye into your vagina. Or worse, stab you with the sharp writing end.
  • DO NOT use anything made of glass unless it is specifically designed for that type of use. Yes, they can break and that is EXTREMELY dangerous!  (don’t believe me, just look up “One Man One Jar”, it’s horrifying.)
  • DO NOT use anything that accidentally pinch, poke, jab, cut, or scrape you.
  • Always use a condom to help minimize the transfer of bacteria.
  • I really shouldn’t have to write this but I’m going to anyways – PETS ARE NOT SEX TOYS, AND NEITHER IS MEAT FROM THE GROCERY STORE! Don’t, just don’t.

That’s pretty much all I can suggest for now, hopefully it helped in some way. If you have any questions feel free to get in touch via my contact page, or if you happen to have a suggestion that worked for you, I’d love if you shared in the comment section below.

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Sex Ed 102 Q&A: Is My Boyfriend Gay?

Question:

First I just want to say that I love your  YouTube videos, they are so informational.

I would appreciate if you could help me with a dilemma. I recently saw a picture of my boyfriend on a website that I would consider to be a gay site. It’s primarily for people who are attracted to transsexual people. Most of the people on the site are pre-op which means they still have dicks, which makes me even more concerned. I have absolutely no idea if he has ever been with someone like this or if this is just a fantasy but even if it is just a fantasy, I’m concerned.

I don’t know how to bring this to his attention but I know I need to because I’m worried and he could be putting me in danger of getting something. How do I let him know or ask him if he is living a double life or is on the downlow? We’ve been together for 3 1/2 years and it would hurt my heart to know that he is like this. He has never shown signs of being interested in men in any way. As a matter of fact he always talks and acts as if he’s damn near homophobic. I appreciate your help!

Answer:

First off thanks for watching and supporting what I do!

As for the question…I too have been there.

When I was in high school I was in a relationship with someone that I loved very much. We were very close, not only lovers but best friends, we were together all the time and thought one day we would get married…typical high school sweethearts.

One day I found his journal and read it (which I know was wrong of me) and in doing so found a phone number and beneath it a males name and a code. Out of curiousity and trusting my instincts, I called it. The number was for a chat line called “Manline“, where males can talk with other males (I’m sure you know what I’m getting at). I was shocked, sad, angry, hurt and disappointed. You name it, I felt it.

So after a few days of tormenting myself I confronted him. He denied it. I asked him again and told him that I already knew what was going on so he better be honest. He still denied it, not only that but got very angry with me for invading his personal space and privacy. Looking back, and knowing him as well as I did, I can completely understand why he’d be upset. And in truth, it wasn’t so much that he was interested in men that hurt, it was that he had lied to my face without a thought towards my feelings.

I made a decision based on the information I had to end the relationship. I didn’t want to chance “catching” something nor did I want to be lied to. I also wasn’t sure if I could trust him again, if he was able to lie once, what was to say that he couldn’t/wouldn’t do it again. It broke my heart, but I felt it was in my own best interest.

Of course my situation isn’t your situation, so what I have to offer is this; before you make up your mind make certain it is him and not someone that looks like him, sounds like him or writes like him. How you do that is your choice, but I do think it’s important. If you’ve done your research and are sure it’s him, bring it up with him in a gentle and respectful way (I find asking rather than confronting can make a big difference in how people react). Let him know that you are not judging, but that you need to know for your own safety and security.  I’d also suggest taking some time to figure out if he’s someone that you want to continue having in your life if it is true – just because he may be attracted to men or transexuals doesn’t men he’s a  bad person or that he’s not the same person you once loved.

Be prepared for him to deny it, to lie, to try to cover it up to get mad at you, at himself, to yell, or cry, or start a fight. If it is infact him, you may be putting him in a situation that he is personally not yet ready to face or deal with. He might not even know himself “what” he is or “who” he is, and this might be part of his experimentation or exploration to find out. Please also keep in mind that as this may be his way of experimenting…it might also be something that will pass in time. However, this was never meant for your eyes. Only his.

In my situation there was a long period of time afterward where we did not talk. We were always aware of how each other was, either through friends or the ‘scene’ we both frequented, but for the most part there was no face to face contact.  After about a year of absence from each others lives we talked on the phone, it was an emotional, eye opening and healing conversation where he admitted everything and told me that he was gay, that he had been all along but didn’t want to come out for fear of how people would react. He was a sensitive person and the thought of people rejecting or abandoning him terrified him, rather than coming out he just kept quiet.  Up until his passing over a year ago we were still in each others lives, often having short periods of distance followed by intense periods of catching up and being inseparable. Regardless of our past, until the day he died there was love. Lots of love…and also lots of forgiveness.

Unfortunately I cannot say that you will have your own “happy ending”, that the pain, frustration and confusion you’re experiencing will all be for nothing. I don’t know you and I don’t know him, so my opinion is just that – an opinion. I can however suggest that maybe this isn’t something personal about or against you…but instead, a part of who he is and needs to learn about so that he can within himself become “whole”.

Be gentle with your approach, loving with your words and try to remember that we all, on every level, deserve to be treated with respect and decency no matter what our sexual “choice” in life is. That being said, I have lived my life by one very true motto that spoke volumes to me when I was younger and questioning the “wrongness” or “rightness” of my own sexuality:

A hand is a hand,
A touch is a touch,
Love is Love.
And Love cannot be denied.

I wish you the best of luck and truly hope that whatever happens you’ll be able to remain respectful and understanding regarding each others feelings. I wish there was a clear cut answer to this kind of situation, unfortunately there isn’t and we just have to make up the road as we go.

Kara_Sutra

p.s I would also like to state that in my opinion, when it comes to being homosexual, transexual etc…there is no right or wrong.  The statement that it is a persons “choice” has no relevance to me.  You are who you are and that can’t be ignored or denied.  Nor should it be.

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