Ease Into Sex Toys
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Step 1: Read Up2 of 21
By Natasha Burton
The brain is a woman's most powerful sex organ, so start with a book to get your mind in the mood. Whether read with your partner or alone, this tome by sexperts Em & Lo is full of solid advice and tastefully sexy pics that just might entice you to try something new.
SHOP NOW: Sex: How To Do Everything, $16
Step 1: Read Up3 of 21
We love this how-to guide from Claire Cavanah and Rachel Venning, the founders of Babeland, a Seattle-based sex shop with a female-friendly mission. Their book is packed with useful information about everything sex-related (no subject is too taboo!) and also includes a helpful Q&A section.
SHOP NOW: Moregasm, $22.50
Step 1: Read Up4 of 21
Written by sex therapist and clinical sexologist Dr. Natasha Janina Valdez, this guide to upping the thrill factor in your sex life is geared toward married couples, but includes tons of fun tips and activities for any couple to try. There's something in here for every comfort level, so you can ease into spontaneity.
SHOP NOW: A Little Bit Kinky, $12
Step 2: Set the Mood5 of 21
Nothing sets the mood like a yummy-smelling candle, and this one burns into a sumptuous massage oil you can easily pour onto yourself or your partner. Not only will a massage relax and prepare you both for more fun, but good lighting is known to help ease bedroom inhibitions.
SHOP NOW: EMBER by Jimmyjane, $35
Step 2: Set the Mood6 of 21
Another way to set a sexy tone is by bringing a blindfold to bed. As popular knowledge contends, losing one of your senses often heightens other senses — and nowhere is this idea better put to use than in the boudoir.
SHOP NOW: Embroidered Blindfold by Coco De Mer, $65
Step 2: Set the Mood7 of 21
Before getting into more playful activities, be sure to have some lubricant on deck. We like this duo for many reasons: The liquid stays slippery (a little goes a long way) and each one provides a different sensation — "his" is warming and "hers" is tingly. You can use both together, one at a time or even put "hers" on him (and vice versa), allowing endless possibilities for foreplay.
SHOP NOW: YOURS + MINE Lubricant, $17
Step 3: Play Around8 of 21
Using sexy props is the next step. For a different kind of sensation, try massaging your partner with a feather tickler instead of your hands. Not only will the gesture feel good, but it's also quite relaxing and will curb any residual stress from a long work day.
SHOP NOW: Small Feather Tickler by Coco De Mer, $16
Step 3: Play Around9 of 21
For another feather option, try one with a long handle. A tickler also goes quite well with the previously-mentioned blindfold, allowing the person doing the tickling to have a sense of control — and this kind of role-playing could be fun to explore with your partner. Just be sure to switch, so both people can have each experience.
SHOP NOW: Ostrich Tickler from Babeland, $16
Step 3: Play Around10 of 21
In the mood to play games? We love the idea of dirty darts for two reasons: 1) A little healthy competition over who can score a bull's-eye is sure to rev up the mood. 2) Throwing darts is active, allowing you to move around and get that blood flowing. And, of course, as you play the game, you'll get the intimate action started.
SHOP NOW: Dirty Darts from Red Envelope, $20
Step 3: Play Around11 of 21
If you can't decide where to start, you can always experiment with a kit that includes multiple sexy items. This one has trial sizes of massage oil and body dust, two blindfolds, a feather tickler, tea candles and a mini how-to guide. It's also compact enough to travel with, making it a great choice if you want to play while on vacation.
SHOP NOW: Slightly Naughty Weekend Kit, $30
Step 3: Play Around12 of 21
Similar to the his/hers lubricants, these lip glosses release an icy or fiery charge. Slide some on, and you'll not only have a perfect pout, but anywhere you kiss will receive a surprise sensation.
Step 3: Play Around13 of 21
This item is a sexy splurge if you're looking to really up your ante in the play department. Wear this sterling silver ring on your thumb and forefinger to give your man some added sensation when pleasing him with your hand.
SHOP NOW: Betony Vernon Petting Ring for Men, $1550
Step 4: Try a Toy14 of 21
When you're ready to move into vibrational territory, this toy is a great way to start because it provides very targeted stimulation. Used solo or with your guy, before sex or during, it works in a variety of situations and is very easy to use. Just put it over your finger and switch it on with the touch of a button.
SHOP NOW: Trojan Her Pleasure Vibrating Touch, $12
Step 4: Try a Toy15 of 21
Vibrators can also be worn by your guy for an extra zing during sex. Positioned for stimulation in just the right place, this one-time-use ring slides on easily (it's very stretchy and will fit most men comfortably) and has a tiny switch on the side of the vibrator that's easy to turn on and off.
SHOP NOW: Screaming O Disposable Vibrating Ring, $6
Step 4: Try a Toy16 of 21
This dual ring gives both you and your guy some good vibration. Each mini vibrator has its own switch, giving you options on how you want to use the toy. This ring is also disposable, but its battery will last for a solid twenty minutes.
SHOP NOW: Trojan Duo Vibrating Ring, $22 (for three)
Step 4: Try a Toy17 of 21
If you find that you really like the vibrating ring sensation, consider investing in a non-disposable one. We like Lelo Bo's ring, because the sensation is neither too strong nor too light, and its flexible material ensures comfort for both partners. This ring is rechargeable and can last up to four hours.
SHOP NOW: Lelo Bo Vibrating Ring, $75
Step 4: Try a Toy18 of 21
When it comes to vibrators, we're big fans of Jimmyjane: Not only are their products elegant, but they are all made from non-toxic materials. If you're not ready for one of the phallic variety, try the FORM 2. It fits in the palm of your hand and can be used in a variety of ways. With its own docking station, it's also easy to recharge.
SHOP NOW: FORM 2 by Jimmyjane, $135
Step 4: Try a Toy19 of 21
Another non-phallic option for a vibrator is one with a fun shape, such as this take on the classic rubber duck. Like all Jimmyjane vibrators, this one is waterproof — which is perfect if you want to transition your bedroom exploring into the bath or shower.
SHOP NOW: ICONIC DUCKIE by Jimmyjane, $25
Step 4: Try a Toy20 of 21
We're also fans of Jimmyjane's FORM 6. Shaped more like the real thing (but still very elegant), this vibrator's soft exterior ensures you'll be comfortable, whether you use it internally or externally. It also has a rechargeable docking station and is available in a variety of colors.
SHOP NOW: FORM 6 by Jimmyjane, $185
Step 4: Try a Toy21 of 21
For a more glam option, we like this very classy — 24 karat gold! — vibrator. This one runs on batteries and boasts a replaceable motor, giving it longevity. Because of its metallic composition, it will warm up with the heat of your hand or cool quickly if you put it in the fridge before using.
SHOP NOW: LITTLE GOLD by Jimmyjane, $325