Lifestyle

Your Ultimate Sex Toy Gift Guide

With a new year on the horizon, it's about time we do a 2021 round-up of this year's best sex toys. One silver lining that came from the Covid-19 pandemic was the boost in sex toy sales and the normalization of pleasure in general — not just for physical satisfaction but for our mental health as well.

Whether it's for solo or partnered use, here are the best of the best from 2021 to add to your sex toy holiday shopping list. (What, doesn't everyone have one of those?) These are all toys I love and use myself — because when it comes to sex products, you deserve honest reviews and recommendations! (And yes, condoms are considered sex toys, so don't skip out on those.)

1. Maude Cone

Maude is a brand that believes sex toys are necessary for exploration and sexual health and their products are all very simple, straight-to-the-point, and approachable for beginners and experienced users alike. This butt plug is made of clean, soft, waterproof silicone and is the perfect size for any body. Bonus: It comes in a cute travel pouch and is very easy to clean.

Shop now: $30; getmaude.com

2. OhNut Buffer Rings

Penetrative sex can and should be enjoyable for anyone who is having it, but there are many instances where it can be painful, like menopause, endometriosis, chemotherapy, or after childbirth, for example. That's where OhNut comes into play: The brand's soft, stretchy rings — worn externally at the base of a penetrating partner (e.g. on their shaft or on a toy) — help manage and reduce pain during sex by acting as a soft buffer. Each set comes with four interlocking rings so you can customize how deep penetration goes.

Shop now: $65; ohnut.co

3. Bellesa Buzzfeed Air Vibe 

This vibrator made waves when it was first put on the market and sold out repeatedly many, many times. The dual stimulation toy — designed for internal and external pleasure — comes in a cute, compact case that helps keep it discreet. Bellesa is also a company that prides itself on ethics, specifically around porn. They have a signature shirt that says "NO FAKE ORGASMS," and let me tell you, with this Air Vibe you won't have anything to fake.

Shop now: $99; bboutique.co

4. LeWand Rechargeable Vibrating Massager

Remember the Magic Wand that Charolette York locked herself in her room with for days on end? Well, this is THAT wand — but the new and improved version! The OG wand has a chord, but this new version is not only cordless but offers ten rumbly vibrations and six vibration patterns.

Shop now: $170; lewandmassager.com

5. We-Vibe Chorus

This is hands down the best couples vibrator I've ever had the literal pleasure of trying, using, and owning. It's incredibly high-tech while being very easy to use — and it offers an adjustable fit so it can cater to all bodies. Plus, the toy can be controlled on an easy-to-use app that allows you or your partner to switch things up easily without having to readjust the toy. To make it even better, the We-Vibe chorus is 100% waterproof and comes with a squeeze remote!

Shop now: $200; we-vibe.com

6. Dame Aer

Dame is a women-run company that is making waves in not only the sex toy industry but the sexual wellness industry as a whole. You can't go wrong with any of their vibes, but if you love oral stimulation this is the toy for you! It uses small pulses of air that are designed to imitate the sensations of oral pleasure, like the flutter of a tongue and the suction of a mouth. It's also completely waterproof and offers five differing pulse options and patterns.

Shop now: $95; dameproducts.com

7. Royal Vegan Condoms

Did you know many on the shelves at drug stores are not vegan and many have spermicide or glycerin that can mess up a vulva owner's pH? Well, these condoms are truly the gold-standard: Vegan, odor-free, organic, cruelty-free, ultra-thin, FDA approved — should I go on? I also love Royal's body wipes and body wash.

8. Maude Vibe

This vibe is simple but oh-so mighty! It has three settings, comes in four different earth-tone color options, is incredibly soft, and is small enough to travel with or use during partnered sex easily! It even has a travel mode (so it won't randomly go off in your bag if it's bonked).

Shop now: $45; getmaude.com

9. V for Vibes BIA

The V for Vibes BIA is a dual stimulation toy providing internal penetration and external clitoral stimulation. The curves in the toy are designed to hit all your pleasure points — and it has an optional ejaculation feature (yes, this IS real). This ejaculation feature isn't just for fun (although it can be) — it also helps create moisture from the inside of the vagina. With twelve vibration modes and multiple features, the BIA is likely to bring you loads of intense pleasure!

Shop now: $100; vforvibes.com

10. Fun Factory Nös Vibrating Cock Ring

The Fun Factory Nos is an innovative, incredible sex toy option for vulva/penis owner couples. This little device is designed to actually fit a penis meaning, it's flexible, soft, comfortable, and generally helps prolong erections. Plus, this baby has flexible extensions that hang down to provide clitoral stimulation… so, magic? It's 100% waterproof, rechargeable, and made with body-safe materials!

Shop now: $100; us.funfactory.com

11. Babeland Magic Wand Rechargeable

The rumbles and buzzes of a Magic Wand are unlike any other wand — and now the OG verison has gone cordless. It features a soft, silicone head, flexible neck, and a long-lasting battery that delivers power up to 6,300 RPM! It also has four intensity levels and four massage patterns. If you haven't tried a Magic Wand before, you're in for a treat. 

Shop now: $140; babeland.com

12. Nu Sensuelle Aluminium 60SXAMP Bullet

Think of this shiny aluminum vibrator as your handy-dandy, go-to vibe, but with a twist — this baby has a warming feature that helps you experience even more pleasurable sensations. It also has twelve (yes, twelve) powerful vibration intensities, all controlled by one button for simplicity. Heads' up: Nu Sensuelle is known for bringing some of the most intense vibrations in the entire sex tech industry and I can attest it truly delivers. Not for the beginner, this toy has usage in self-pleasure, partnered sex, and even in BDSM scenes (because of how intense it is!)

Shop now: $100; nusensuelle.com

13. Liberator Wedge/Ramp Combo

As incredible as sex is, it can be equally just as awkward sometimes when it comes to positioning we've all been there. The wedge is an innovative tool that helps partners find comfortable positions for everyone involved with its foamy feel and cozy microfiber cover. To clarify — this isn't just for penetrative sex — this wedge is also fabulous for prolonging oral sex positions, watching TV more comfortably, stretching, and so much more!

Shop now: $275; bettystoybox.com

Whew! There they are, folks — the best of the best from the 2021 sex technology industry — what a time to be alive for pleasure, am I right? Now, as 2022 approaches, I will leave you with this idea — in the realm of your personal pleasure, what is one thing you want to take with you from 2021 and one thing you want to leave behind? For example — you could take with you prioritizing self-pleasure and leave behind feeling shame. Of course, this doesn't mean you will automatically accomplish what goal you set but setting the intention can be a little reminder to help encourage your pleasure journey!

Rachel Wright, LMFT, is a licensed psychotherapist, sex educator, and relationship expert based in New York City.

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