What is a Sex Toy?

The world of sex toys can be daunting, to say the least. Whether buying for yourself or for someone else, it’s time to get sex toy savvy.

Want to know which sex toys to choose for a happier, more fulfilling sex life? Curious about expanding your horizons, but not always sure about what goes where?

If you’re confused about cock rings, vexed by vibrators, or baffled by butt plugs, then this sex toy guide will be sure to help.

Different types of sex toys


Vibrators are, as you might have guessed, sex toys that vibrate.

They come in a huge array of shapes and sizes to give you as much pleasure as non-humanly possible for anyone and everyone. From classic realistic, phallic shapes, to curved stimulators, rabbits, bullets, wands, and remote-controlled vibes... each one is designed to give clitoral, vaginal, G-spot or P-spot stimulation, or a mix of all.

They can be enjoyed by people of all genders, and are often designed for insertion as well as offering a range of other sensations. Some are small enough to be incorporated into couples’ sex, with bullet vibrators often being accommodated for dildos and strap-ons.

Most people with vulvas find it easier to achieve orgasm through clitoral stimulation than any other kind, which is why the vibrator is one of the most popular sex toys. Many combine both clitoral and penetrative stimulation to give you the most mind-blowing of blended orgasms. They also tend to offer a wide range of speeds and patterns so you can find which thrills you most. Learn more about vibrators here.


Dildos are insertable sex toys that are perfect for those who like something a little more realistic during their play. They provide straightforward satisfaction and are ideal if you need some sort of internal stimulation to orgasm.

Available in many different colors, shapes, and sizes, they provide penetration pleasure unlike anything else.

The wide range of realistic and non-anatomical dildos means they're great for both solo female or male play. And thanks to the many harness options, they're also perfect for lesbian or hetero couples who want a penetrative addition and pegging play. Learn more about dildos here.

Love Eggs & Jiggle Balls

Discreet and sexy, jiggle balls are small, egg-shaped balls that sit inside your vagina to give your pelvic floor a workout. They can be used solo, during foreplay, or while you’re out in public. Jiggle balls are the sexiest workout a vulva-owner can get. They strengthen your vaginal muscles to give you stronger orgasms during sex, and help you feel tighter for for partner.

Love eggs come in vibrating styles, often with a remote control so you can put the power in your lover's hands. They sit inside the vagina stimulating the wearing, however many remote control eggs make for perfect couples’ play so you can enjoy together.

Butt Plugs

When you think of anal toys, a butt plug is usually the first thing that comes to mind. Generally speaking, butt plugs (which can also be vibrating or inflatable) are conical-shaped, starting small and gently graduating in size. They usually feature a slimmer 'neck' at the bottom and a flared base for safety.

Butt plugs can be used to gently stretch the anus before enjoying something bigger, like an anal dildo or a penis. And also to create a sensation of fullness and pressure, while stimulating the sensitive internal and external nerve endings.

When the pelvic muscles contract during an orgasm, a butt plug can intensify the sensation, as you're squeezing against something. Using one as part of your sexual repertoire can lead to intense anal fulfillment and amazing orgasms. Learn more about butt plugs here.

Anal Beads

Anal beads are a great way for beginners to explore anal sex. They generally consist of a string of smooth plastic, metal, or glass beads joined together by flexible material. The first few beads usually start off small but slowly graduate in size, allowing you to enjoy more and more length and girth.

Anal beads can be used alone for unique anal stimulation or during masturbation or intercourse. With their graduated shape, smooth spheres and ergonomic, easy-to-use design, anal beads give you a 'filled-up' feeling that many people find incredibly pleasurable, and can turn a regular orgasm into an earth-shattering experience.

Pull them out just before orgasm to feel an intense sensation unlike anything else!


Strap-ons are a great sex toy for both mixed- and same-sex couples. They allow you to penetrate your partner while keeping your hands free for other fun.

The strap-on range includes strap-on harness kits, pegging kits, hollow strap-ons, vibrating strap-ons, double-penetration strap-ons, Vac-U-Loc strap-ons, and even strapless strap-ons – all of which serve a slightly different purpose and pleasure.

The majority of strap-ons come with a strap-on harness that sits around the wearer's hips to give greater control over the toy during use. Learn more about different strap-ons here.

Cock rings

A cock ring (also known as 'a stamina ring', 'a love ring', or 'a penis ring') is a stretchy ring that prevents blood from flowing back down the penis. They are for people with a penis who are looking for longer, harder erections, and for couples looking for increased mutual pleasure during sex.

Cock rings are easy to wear and should be used with lube. They should be put on while you're flaccid (not erect) and should sit at the very base of the penis. As you become harder the ring should feel snug, but not uncomfortable. You'll notice the benefits almost immediately.

Vibrating cock rings are available in both single and double ring designs and feature a vibrating unit that heightens stimulation for you and your partner. Most have a textured, forward-facing vibrator that stimulates your partner’s clitoris during sex, while others focus stimulation towards your nuts for solo thrills.

A cock and ball ring (that is, a ring that sits around your shaft and balls) should also be put on while you're flaccid. You'll need to put the ring around your balls first, followed by your penis. Put plenty of lube on the inside of the ring and on yourself to make this easier.

Learn more about cock rings here.

Strokers (including Fleshlights)

Male masturbators, like strokers or sleeves, make a great first-time sex toy for people with penises – they're easy to use, inexpensive, easy to clean and give out-of-this-world stimulation.

The Fleshlight is a legendary product in male masturbation. A Fleshlight is great for beginners as it comes with a discreet case and an insert so you can enjoy the ultra-realistic sensations right out of the box.

Small and discreet, strokers sit on the shaft or over the head of the penis and can provide authentic, real-feel pleasure, or better-than-the-real-thing textures that stimulate the nerve endings along the entire length of the penis.

Strokers also make a great addition to couples’ play, spicing-up any kind of hand or mouth action. Many couples like to play together with sleeves and strokers as they are non-threatening, so can be great for revolutionizing foreplay.

If you or your partner have reservations about male sex toys because of their realistic look, a non-anatomical masturbator is a great alternative. Learn more about strokers and fleshlights here.

Recommended Beginner's Sex Toys

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