Me + Sandra from SheVibe + a hotel room with vulvaesque wallpaper + a phone camera + wine = this rollicking good time of a video!
Easily, one of the highlights of Woodhull’s Sexual Freedom Summit this year was spending time with Sandra, Thor, and Alex from SheVibe. I’ve hung out with them before at conferences past, but this time I was reminded once again why we are a match made in sex toy heaven. How, I wondered, could I convey their in-person awesomeness to all of you? That’s when I decided to corral Sandra into my room for a live Periscope video chat.
Answering questions from each other and the audience, we spent an hour talking about dream vibrators, vulva kayaks, our shared love of betusked animals, our shared distaste for rabbit vibes, and the unique challenges of working in an industry where creeper phone calls run rampant and people make you responsible for their orgasms. Plus, Sandra reveals which well-loved sex toy she’s yet to try (SHOCK AND HORROR!), and a viewer mistakes me for Erika Moen!
Here’s an overview of all the stuff we discussed. Sorry for the crap video quality — I even got a new phone for this, but livestreaming is just bound to suck, I guess?
- 0:47 — A question from Jamie Gump on Twitter: “Favorite toy of the last year vs. favorite toy of all time?” I explain that the Pure Wand is probably my all-time fave because when I went in for my sex toy manicure, I knew for a fact I needed it on one of my nails. So far this year, I’ve been impressed with the We-Vibe Rave (which Sandra did not know was app-compatible!).
- 2:19 — We talk about day-to-day operations at SheVibe, Sandra’s role as problem solver, and how people make us responsible for their orgasms.
- 5:19 — Sandra asks me, “If you had access to unlimited resources and the world’s greatest engineers, what would you endeavor to create as the ultimate pleasure toy?” For one, I’d make sure it had a rumbly motor.
- 7:10 — A live viewer asks us, “Are manufacturers better nowadays about using body-safe materials?”
- 7:57 — I ask Sandra about SheVibe’s stance on stocking porous toys and products from unpopular companies such as Pipedream. Short answer: accessibility. Some people just need a cheap glass toy or inexpensive (phthalate-free!) realistic dildo. Not everyone can afford to spend $300 on a huge chunk of silicone from Tom of Finland or Square Peg.
- 13:39 — Backwoods Bedroom on Twitter asks, “What is the biggest mistake you typically see new sex toy reviewers making?”
- 15:42 — Someone wants to know if the new curved base on the Tantus Ryder is an improvement. Sandra and I discuss the best butt plug colors.
- 17:10 — We commiserate about creeper phone calls, how degraded they make us feel, and how nobody ever calls to ask legitimate questions about penis pumps.
- 22:45 — Sandra asks me, “What are your ‘go to’ toys when a newbie asks for vibe recommendations, dildo recommendations and butt toy suggestions? Is it difficult to think in those terms after years of honing your own pleasure toy preferences?” I somehow manage to only answer the second half of that question, so here’s my answer to the first part: PicoBong Ako (vibrator), Tantus’ Grab Bag section (dildo), and the Fun Factory Bootie (butt plug).
- 24:29 — Good question: “Do you think that the dual stimulation toy is just something that people should stop trying to fucking do?” We decide that categorically, rabbits/dual vibes are the type of sex toy most likely to disappoint you.
- 25:49 — Spurred by a story of a customer who got the Hitachi and Gee Whizzard and complained they couldn’t orgasm with them, we talk about how so many things can influence pleasure — not using lube, taking antihistamines, being upset that someone was voted off Big Brother… then I squeal embarrassingly loudly after Sandra reveals that her best friend is related to Julie Chen (the host of Big Brother). I tell Sandra about Julie Chen’s merciless take-down of a racist houseguest.
- 28:28 — BACK TO TALKING MORE SHIT ABOUT RABBITS, because we can always talk more shit about rabbits. Sandra says that the only rabbit she has ever liked was the Thunder Cloud. We come up with a theory: when a rabbit works for someone, they find it so impressive that they then get excited about the mere concept of rabbits.
- 30:17 — If a sex toy is going to be shaped like an animal, the only animal I’ll allow is the walrus, because I collect them. Naturally, we discuss walrus anatomy and whether it would feel pleasurable. I learn that Sandra collects elephants — another TUSKED creature!
- 32:35 — A viewer asks about fucking machines. I have the Sybian and it’s okay, but mostly I don’t want to be RAMMED INCESSANTLY like that.
- 34:40 — Taking a moment to fangirl over the amazing Japanese artist Rokudenashiko and her vulva kayak, and how we need a different word than “ballsy” — maybe “vulvy”? (Correction: Rokudenashiko was actually fined for distributing a 3D scan of her vulva.)
- 36:10 — I rarely ever throw toys away and instead just give them to my family members.
- 38:24 — Someone asks whether glycerin in lube is bad — usually yes, because it acts like a sugar and can promote yeast infections! I contend that using lube means the difference between loving and hating masturbation.
- 40:05 — We share memories of when SheVibe and I first started working together and how Sandra learned to gel with bloggers. She says so many sweet things to me and I don’t know what to do with myself!
- 43:14 — SheVibe is making an effort to draw more people of color on their site after realizing how white their characters were.
- 44:04 — Sugarcunt wants to know, “What’s the hardest part about working with bloggers? (Let’s be real, we’re not always perfect!)” We discuss how to find your voice as a blogger.
- 47:18 — A viewer would like some advice for their first time in a sex shop. I tell a story about someone in the middle of checking out with the Mona and Hula Beads who asked me, “are these any good?”
- 50:46 — “Basically, don’t tell me about your penis.” —me, every day
- 51:12 — We run out of wine and our garçon pours us more. Thanks, Thor!
- 51:27 — “What sort of products have you picked up [at SheVibe] that you didn’t think would sell, but turned out that they did?” Sandra didn’t believe the Womanizer would even work, let alone sell.
- 53:55 — Someone says “shout out to your dildo hutch” and I realize they’ve mistaken me for Erika Moen. We talk more about sex toy storage, such as over-the-door shoe organizers.
- 54:47 — “Are sex toys always part of your sexual encounters,” Sandra wants to know, “or do you ever go ‘commando’?” She is amused by me saying that my vulva-rubbing technique is “not that good.” It’s just not!
- 56:30 — I ask Sandra, “Which toy that bloggers really like have you not tried?” and I gasp in horror when she says the Pure Wand!
- 58:47 — Sandra asks me, “Have you ever felt like you had to raise the bar for yourself sexually or has it been a natural progression of curiosity?” Natural, I think, considering my journey toward larger toys. I consider how the Intensity, shitty as it was, prepped me for estim that I actually like in the Neon Wand.
- 1:03:54 — A viewer wants to know about the best cleaner for silicone toys. Just soap and water, yo! Tips for boiling them? I suggest a good pair of TONGS.
- 1:06:00 — Holy shit, there are 151 people watching us! We should make out. We don’t actually make out. But we would. That’s what matters.