"In a world where we are encouraged to save money, reduce waste and upreuse, I can see why it might seem like a good idea for some people to make their own sex toys," admits Bonnie Hall (opening the new TAB), global product director at online sex toy retailer Lovehoney. "However, it really isn't!" Sex toys are more than just shapes, and using household items is definitely a behavior not worth the risk."
Pelvic floor specialist Dr. Amanda Olson, president and chief clinical officer of Intimate Rose, said the behavior is risky for several reasons, starting with materials. "Many substances can cause infection and damage to vaginal tissue. When choosing materials, many people are not aware of the safety requirements of the materials and their own structure, "she added." In addition, it is important to look for safety measures such as FDA-approved silicone."
Hall, who plays an important role in the development of sex toys, tells us, "When we create sex toys, we use materials that are safe for the body, such as silicone, ABS plastic, glass and aluminum, to name a few. Each material is tested in an independent laboratory and verified to be safe for use. When you pick up a household item that is not designed for intimate use, there is a risk of unsafe materials. It's also very relevant if people are choosing foods that could also introduce harmful bacteria into their bodies."
In fact, says Angie Rowntree, founder and director of ethical porn site Sssh.com, "local emergency room staff thank you in advance" for sticking with medical-grade, physically safe materials instead of trying common but dangerous items such as "vegetables, cell phones, and staplers."
In addition to potentially unsafe materials, Dr. Olson added that when it comes to using food or DIY contraptions as insertive sex toys, "they can produce something that ruptures or gets stuck in the vagina and needs help getting it out." For example, vegetable fragments can get stuck near the cervix, while hand-carved woodwork can cause painful, hard-to-reach fragments.
In addition, Dr. Olson warns that "if you create something that is too big for your vaginal opening," there is a risk of "harming your pelvic floor muscles or vaginal tissue." Professional, medical-grade sex toys, on the other hand, come in a variety of lengths, girths, and textures, so you can choose completely safe options based on your preferences and experience level.
Finally, the risks of using DIY or homemade toys are especially serious when it comes to anal irritation. "Our rectum is a vacuum," Marla Renee Stewart, MA, Lover's sexologist and sexologist (open new TAB) reminds us. So if you use an object or dildo on your rectum that is not specifically designed for anal insertion, the object "will go in and have a hard time getting out."
The professionals at Lovehoney call this the "anti-retention" rule, and they spend a lot of time on it during the research and development phase, Hall says. "This is to ensure that all toys can be easily and safely removed from the body," she said. "This is very important for anal play because we want to make sure our plugs and entertainment toys have strong, trumpet-shaped bases. This is also key to the design of Kegel and Love Egg, which require a safe and powerful pull ring to remove them quickly and easily. Very few household items have these design elements."
Check out some products recommended by Orgasm Angel Store, especially for those who wish to explore new sensations, but aren't sure where to start. Remember to lubricate, especially if you're having anal sex!