The Tantus Rumble: Here’s hoping

I’m really looking forward to January.

There’s usually a bit of a lull after Christmas. The pretty lights and the glittery decorations are gone, the effects of far too much rich food and booze the previous month really start to make themselves feel known, and if previous winters are anything to go by there’s another month to go before we get a good snowfall to brighten things up again.

But this January I hope not to notice any of that, because I’ll be hovering by the postbox in anticipation of the arrival of my Tantus Rumble.

I like my Tantus toys.

They could have been a horrible disappointment. People speak of them in awed tones, and my reaction to the Tantus Echo was so positive I was almost sure it was a fluke. Okay, so I know what kind of toys work for me and I’ve purposely sought out their textured, angled dildos.

Even the poor Tantus Purr… I have half a review written, but thorough testing coincided with herpes, then thrush, then heartbreak. The thing is, in my less overwrought moments, I still rather enjoyed how it felt and what it did to me, and I know that as time goes on I’ll be able to give it a much fairer go again. Part of me is tempted to keep it by for when the Rumble arrives.

Tantus say the Rumble will be featherweight (less than 200 grams if my calculations are right) but super powerful and, as the name suggests, on the rumbly end of the spectrum. They’ve designed it so the power button and the speed controls are separate (hurrah! No more frustrating thumb moments!).

The Tantus Rumble

The whole thing appears to be not that much bigger than one of Tantus’s dildos, at 8.5 inches long. The body looks a bit like a set of hair clippers, but the business end has a broad removable silicone head – which should make cleaning it a cinch. At this point there are three other heads available: the Spoon, the Dorado and the Convertible.

The Spoon is designed for G Spot and P spot stimulation, and the Dorado sounds like it’s supposed to emulate the flickering of a tongue. I’m most excited by the Convertible, which promises to turn suction base and vibrating dildos into *proper* vibrators.

That’s the one I’ve gone for.

I love how the Echo and Tsunami feel as dildos, but the gorgeous squishy silicone pretty much kills the vibrations provided by the RO-80 bullets that come with them. If the Rumble is as powerful as Tantus are promising, it’ll give some of my favourite toys a whole extra dimension.

The Rumble is still in the crowdfunding stage; Tantus are hoping to raise $50,000 in 60 days. Last night, after less than two weeks of funding, they’ve already raised more than $21,500 of that.

Donations range from $15 (about £10 at the current exchange rate) for a warm glow, thank you card and discount voucher towards a future spend with Tantus, to $250 (just under £180), for which donors get the Rumble plus all four existing heads, plus various other bits and bobs including a Tantus mug (oh how I want to drink my tea from a Tantus mug in the office).

I’m excited because it’s Tantus, but also because I’m still looking for the perfect wand.

The Doxy massager was powerful and quiet, but I didn’t get on with the size of the head (or the layout of the buttons). The Lelo Smart Wand Medium is light and seems to vibrate at the ideal frequency for me, but it doesn’t have the power I sometimes need. The Lovehoney Magic Wand Deluxe has the power and a wonderfully user-friendly control wheel but the head and the vibrations don’t seem to feel as good as they used to.

I know… there’s no such thing as perfect.

I am concerned that the size and weight of the Rumble will limit the strength of the vibrations. I fear that I’ll love the way it makes my dildos vibrate so much I’ll either have to fork out for another, or put up with an inferior wand on my clit.

But that’s getting ahead of myself, and I am nothing if not optimistic.

Roll on January.

The Institute of Sexology

Everyone I know who’s been to the Wellcome Collection’s Institute of Sexology exhibition has come away feeling that something was lacking.

Guides to The Institute of Sexology, The Wellcome CollectionIt’s not surprising, really. For one thing, it has to appeal to a broad audience in a small space. Focusing on any one aspect of such a sprawling subject would be at the cost of something equally important to someone else. There’s no way we could ever hope for an exhibition, even one that took over the whole of the old Millennium Dome, to cover it all in the depth we’d like.

Then there’s the fact that it’s sex we’re talking about. Given the way it’s still treated by the wider world, and indeed by much of academia, hitting the right tone was always going to be difficult. It has to be serious, or face accusations of being nothing more than titillation and publicity baiting.

Perhaps if Magnus Hirschfeld’s Institute of Sexology in Berlin hadn’t been burned down by government-sanctioned rioters in 1933, we’d have wider, more in-depth, knowledge and resources to draw upon for a project like this.

When I was young, we went to Jorvik for the day. Back then it was seriously innovative and eye opening; while there were still the glass cases of carefully preserved and cleaned artefacts, right next door were reproductions of them being shown and used in context, in an exhibit that owed as much to ghost trains as modern archaeology, transporting us through the world of of the people whose broken combs and pottery we’d been glancing at moments before. I remember my parents commenting on the smell, all cesspits and warm bodies, and our delight at seeing the people responsible for creating that smell on TV about a week later.

I can imagine the difficulties involved in doing something similar with the artefacts on display at the Institute of Sexology, the need to balance context and learning and keeping focus on the objects themselves rather than the scenes they’d be found in. But positioned just so in their cases, they lose some of their vitality. Perhaps one day through virtual reality, we’ll be able to flick through the comics and postcards, get a better idea of the people who carried those ornate and meticulously detailed explicit carvings around with them, or how they displayed them in their homes.

But turn your back on the cases and gaze at the wall of portraits arranged there. This is Zanele Muholi’s Faces and Phases, a display of monochrome portraits of black South African lesbians, bisexuals, and trans men. Every one of them is beautiful, luminous. Taken from 2006 to the present day, there are gaps in the display to represent where one of the subjects has since died, whether of violence, illness, or some other cause.

And so I came to the part of the exhibition that stayed with me most vividly, looking at the life and work of Marie Stopes.

Institute of Sexology guide, Marie StopesIn particular I was drawn to the charts she made tracking her degree of sexual desire at different times of the month, not just measuring the intensity of her feelings, but breaking them down to include exactly how and where she felt any stirrings, from “thoughts constantly reverting, in the midst of other business” to “the feeling of tenderness in kisses” – and my favourite:

“Desire to be held tightly around the waist, till corsets become tempting, tho’ normally they are abhorrent.”

Like the best of us she was a complicated woman. She was a staunch eugenicist, while devoted to women’s reproductive health and happiness, and that of the children they bore. There is a clear logic to this: she may have wanted only the best people, only those who met the right criteria, to breed – but that wouldn’t be helped by denouncing reproductive wellbeing and the right to choose not to have tens of offspring to those she’d rather weren’t multiplying.

I was equally fascinated by Ye Olde Sex Chart, a labour of love compiled by Carolee Schneemann, detailing the characteristics of every man she slept with after breaking up with her partner, but it didn’t stay with me in quite the same way. It doesn’t take “filthy psychoanalysis” as Stopes referred to Freud’s work, to realise why: Stopes’s focus was sexual health and happiness, and to help her understand it she kept a watchful eye on her own body to see what it was up to. My mind is far more involved in my own sexual happiness than perhaps she’d approve of, but observing our physical selves closely as part of the process is something we share.

I would have loved to see the interviews with the women who carried out the NatSal surveys presented in a more interactive way, or the opportunity to watch one through in its entirety. They’re the women responsible for gathering the intimate details of how the UK thinks and acts when it comes to sex, and they would have made fascinating listening.

But we do get a glimpse into a small, partly self-selecting group of new subjects, in the form of the visitor survey. Responses from the previous week’s surveys are added to the data presented at the end of the exhibition. Some of the less quantitative, more emotional – or soundbitey – responses are included more explicitly, scrolling across the data matrix display set into the wall.

My guide to the exhibition is covered in asterisks and exclamation marks demanding further attention. I came away with plenty to think about, and plenty of avenues to research further should I wish – and perhaps that was the point of an exhibition like this. We’re not supposed to leave sated, but with more of an idea about what to explore next.

Institute of Sexology guide, Masters and Johnson

The Institute Of Sexology can be found at the Wellcome Collection, 183 Euston Road, London. It runs until 20 September 2015.

Review: Tantus Twist and Tantus Juice butt plugs

It took me a while to get to grips with butt plugs. I liked how they felt, somehow connecting with my clit – in the same way playing with my nipples does – but there was one of those embarrassing questions getting in the way:

Apparently it’s all about the neck. The slimmer the neck, the less your bottom’s being held open, the less chance of it pulsing, sliding, or popping out.

To this I’d add: try texture. Tantus butt plugs have a fairly wide neck, but the silicone surface and the non-diamond shaping help. The Tantus Juice still has a habit of making a break for it as I orgasm, but the Tantus Twist does not budge once it’s settled in.

Tantus Twist and Tantus Juice butt plugs

The T-bar bases make them incredibly comfortable too; as well being nervous about having a hairy bum, I’m also prone to spots. One or two of the plugs I have with round bases – particularly the one with the pretty, but rigid, jewel base – catch and irritate those spots.

I know, sexy.

But the T-bars are neat and soft with not a hint of a defined edge. It actually took getting high-res photos of them for this review for me to see the seams.

The result of this incredibly smooth and rounded construction is that wearing either plug for several hours is entirely possible, and a little more interesting with the Twist. I’m aware of its ins and outs the whole time I’m wearing it, usually in a rather pleasant way. Meanwhile I don’t know how different the Juice would feel from the straightforward Neo; the grooves seem quite understated, and I don’t feel particularly aware of any extra sensation.

The bars also allow for experimentation when using a vibrator – touch it to the ends of the bar for a gentle buzz, move it further towards the centre and the stem for much more intense stimulation.

Tantus Juice butt plug, T-bar and head

I love doing this with the Juice. The sensations range from “mmmm” when playing around the edges or using the lower settings of the Lelo Smart Wand, up to “holy fuck!” when I move up or in a few notches. And while I’ve pretty much given up on internal vibrations – they’re very rarely strong enough, or focused in the right place, or they get drowned out by the vibration of whichever wand I’m using – when I’m wearing the Juice, it’s worth the effort, because that sensation travels through the back wall of my vagina to give a subtle boost to the plug.

The smooth shape – the gentle curve instead of the more traditional diamond shape – really lends itself to play with other toys. I’ve used the Humdinger, the Fun Factory G4 Tiger, the Tantus Echo – and while the slimmer toys have been more successful (hurrah, I’m not a gaping cavern after all!) it’s more a case of finding the right angle to accommodate both dildo and Juice.

The one problem I have with the Juice is that once I start to come, it goes. There’s no room for edging and holding back for a more intense orgasm; the first hint of a contraction and the velvety smoothness of the silicone and the grooves cease to hold it in place, and my arse pushes it out with gusto.

Tantus Twist from aboveI told you, sexy.

Because of the much more pronounced shape, the Tantus Twist stays put no matter what. But while it giveth it also takes away: it doesn’t play as well with others. You may have noticed that I like texture; most of my toys have some form of ripple, raised pattern or interesting shape.

This sets them up quite nicely for a clash with the screw thread pattern of the Twist. Even the slender, smooth backed FSoG Drive Me Crazy rubs uncomfortably against the narrower, more ridged back wall of my vagina. The only dildo I’ve found to be truly comfortable with the Twist is the Lovehoney G-spot.

But as long as I go with this combination, it adds an enjoyable extra intensity to proceedings. The texture may be in a different location than I’d usually choose, but it makes up a little for the fact that my G-spot and I aren’t as friendly as we were.

There’ll be a trick to taking it out that I haven’t got wise to yet, as bearing down and giving it a little twist isn’t quite enough to free it easily. But cleaning it is a breeze. Yes, the screw threads are deep, but they’re smooth; there are no sharp delineations as with the Tantus Splash, so there’s no need for lots of careful scrubbing. Hot soapy water and the job’s done.

Tantus Twist butt plug T-bar

Both are fantastic for wearing during the day or evening for a bit of hidden thrill. The Twist excels at this, giving plenty of purchase and providing the same kind of heightened but enjoyable awareness a good set of kegel balls does.

Which is better for play during sex or masturbation depends on what else you like – for me, never patient once I get revved up, the Juice edges it even though it doesn’t let me edge.

The Juice was provided to me by Tantus, free of charge in exchange for an honest, unbiased review; I bought the Twist from Lovehoney back when it was still in stock.

Review: Tantus Tsunami vibrating dildo

I am so relieved. I thought I was going to have to write a bad review of the Tantus Tsunami – a toy that looks like it should be perfect for me. It’s got bumps – front and back! It’s got a curve to accommodate G-spotting! It’s got length! And yet after making a really positive first impression, it rapidly became… upsetting.

The Tsunami resembles an ergonomic moulded-to-fit-the-fingers bicycle handlebar grip, with a shaft of about seven inches long and an inch and a half thick at its widest.

Tantus Tsunami in full

It’s the slightly tacky, beautifully shiny, Tantus silicone, and it has a seriously thick base that not only makes it harness compatible but much more stable than the Splash when standing on anything less level than a bedside table.

It comes in three colours: Strawberry, Purple Haze, and Midnight Purple (iridiscent indgo). Tantus sent me the PINK!! one.

I was dreading trying to write it up. I’ve never written a completely bad review in my relatively short blogging life, but I’d tried and tried and couldn’t work out what was wrong.

It filled me, the rear ridges felt good, the curved shaft allows for G-spot manipulation without being in your face, and those front contours – well, they’re my kind of thing.

It excited me – but then after that… It became frustrating, and incredibly hard work. No matter how much I thrust, how fast, how hard, how deep, I couldn’t quite crest the wave that was building.

What was worse, the texture make it somewhat girthy, and the effort I had to put in left me feeling a little numb. Switching to another, more reliable toy to give me the relief I was craving just left me feeling cavernous and irritated instead.

The Tsunami left me high and dry.

It was a horrible reminder of days past when I’d get turned on but then get no further.

But it turns out there are two kinds of experience I can have with the Tsunami. There’s the am-I-doing-this-right version (I wasn’t), where I end up frustrated and desperate for release but having to fight for it every step of the way, and there’s the Level 3 orgasmic where-did-that-come-from shock and awe version that leaves me giggling for as long as it took me to write the first draft of this next part of the review.

Tantus Tsunami close-up detail

Admittedly I hadn’t masturbated for about a week, but that usually has the result of leaving me a little out of practise, in need of a good orgasm but also needing to wake the relevant parts of myself up again.

I was also having a period.

I wear a menstrual cup most months, and thanks to a variety of factors I’m no longer suffering from periods that wake me up at least once a night, and early hours, to empty cups and replace pads – or that even show a trace when I amble to the loo after putting the kettle on of a much more relaxed morning. So with a mug of tea in my paws, I ambled back to bed feeling horny and figuring it was time to give the Tsunami another go, completely forgetting there was a silicone cup nestling inside me.

It was only when I realised there was a significant amount of dildo still outside me, and that it didn’t want to go in any further that I remembered. I had half a mind to disrupt proceedings, to go and remove said cup, but then I also realised I was feeling some rather delightful sensations with the cup and dildo exactly where they were. Just the slightest tug back and forth, and I was mewing. Then groaning. Then wailing like a police car. I hadn’t even switched to a stronger clitoral vibrator, which I usually need to do.

It was so quick and unexpected I wasn’t entirely sure I’d actually come, especially as my mind was still chuntering away with itself about whether or not to go and remove the menstrual cup and so on. But my clit was suddenly immensely sensitive and screaming for relief from the vibrator, and I was giggling in a way I haven’t for quite a while.

I hadn’t even got through the second song on my playlist.

This clearly required further testing.

So I did it again the next morning. Threw in a few more obstacles: made myself hold back a little – which, ironically, resulted in me needing to get out the Lovehoney Magic Wand – but still, BAM! Practically no effort required, and fits of laughter once more.

Admittedly, some of that laughter was sheer relief at having a couple of orgasms in a couple of days after neglecting myself a little, and some of it was laughing at myself for being such a ridiculous giggler. But those first 30 seconds of exultant cackling? The Tsunami.

Tantus Tsunami pointing slightly downwards

As with all Tantus toys sold as vibrators, it’s a solid silicone toy with a hollow in the base for an RO-80mm bullet vibrator. While I’m learning how to make them work for me (I have thoughts of trying to rig two together a bit like a body-less rabbit for the ultimate self-tease), the dense silicone of a dildo deadens the vibration significantly.

The tip of a fully inserted bullet is about level with the lowest of the front peaks. That means just the top half inch – if that – of the vibrator is in the part of the dildo I’m using, and it’s pretty much wasted. If you need to take more of the Tsunami’s length to benefit from the ridges, the vibrator might be more useful; to me it’s unnecessary, but it’s good to have another spare.

The trick, then, for me at least, is not to be greedy.

It wasn’t like I was denying myself much – I still took a good five inches of the shaft. I just didn’t need the bottom inch and a half; insisting on taking it all previously simply moved the effective parts of the dildo too far inside me to have any effect (note to self: just because you can fit the whole thing in your vagina, that doesn’t mean you have to).

I was all ready to write a slightly mournful, puzzled, concerned review. I’m so glad I didn’t have to – and thank you, Tantus, for sending me the Tsunami to review.

Review: Tantus Splash

I’ve been yearning for the Tantus Splash on a purely aesthetic level for as long as I’ve known about the company. It’s gorgeous: a head that reminds me in equal parts of a bottle-nosed dolphin and the Alien, pearlescent purple dual-tone silicone, the dribbling globule shape.

And it’s increasingly difficult to find in the UK.

When I found somewhere selling them, I got rather excited. I got up early every day for the next week, despite knowing the post doesn’t come until about lunchtime, because I didn’t want to miss its arrival.

Tantus Splash, about to fall over

The Splash is deceptive even up close. It looks both bigger and smaller than it actually is. The head is quite girthy, but the core is rather slim; the dribbles add considerably to the width further down, but they’re well spaced and therefore there’s no overly intimidating sections to deal with – once you’ve got over that broad, smiling dolphin, tip.

The base is thinner than that on the other Tantus toys in my collection (I’ve got quite a few now, hurrah), to the extent that it doesn’t stand up on its own quite as happily as them – it was a serious job getting the upstanding photo above. While this allows for juvenile minds such as mine to take great pleasure in giving it a good waggle, I suspect it might affect how well it works in a harness.

The dribbles – it feels wrong to call them something so clumsy – each cascade down from the head, delineated sharply on the shaft, rising out of gentler grooves at the head.

There’s a lot to take in.

The Tantus SplashSo the first time I used it I probably did it a massive disservice. I was almost expecting to be disappointed. After all, I’d been lusting after it for ages, and no fantasy object ever lives up to the dream. But I was also nervous and tired and knew I probably wasn’t in the right frame of mind to take in all that detail.

And I was right. There was too much for me to focus on. Me! The woman who needs the sexual equivalent of a one man band to orgasm!

It excited me a great deal but it confused me at the same time. It made me moan, whimper, shiver and I may have blown a few neurons trying to process all that magnificent input.

I had to stop, in favour of the slightly less confusing, slightly more focused, sensations offered by the FSoG Drive Me Crazy.

I gave myself a few days, choosing to revisit the Splash when I knew I’d be better rested and have more time.

Those dribbles – the spacing, their depth, the fact that they provide texture all around the shaft – provide extra sensation without having to think angles, how much to thrust, how far in the dildo is inserted. There’s something going on practically the whole time. And while my G-spot may not be as voracious as it once was, the back of my vaginal wall loves the attention and texture of that lowest dribble. Its mate, towards the front of the toy, caters to the same area as the knobbles on the Drive Me Crazy, but in a different way.

Close up of the dribbles on the body of the Tantus SplashDepending on how deeply the toy is inserted, the other dribbles have a similar effect on other parts of my vagina.

They always catch me by surprise, eliciting pleased sounding grunts and the sort of gasps that I’m learning must frustrate writers of erotica, because “oh!” just doesn’t do them justice.

But don’t overlook the ridges. Yes, they’re subtle compared to the rivulets of silicone that pour down from them, but hold back and enjoy them in their own right.

Inserting the Splash just an inch or so with the curve to the front, they’re textured enough to stimulate and excite without the distraction of the dribbles.

They’re similar to the grooves on the Annabelle Knight Vibrating Love Egg, which still reduces me to giggles every time I use it – but because this is a dildo, far more controllable and directable.

Tantus Splash head, close up

The only problem I have with the Tantus Splash is cleaning it.

It’s pure silicone, so it can withstand being sterilised, boiled, bleached and so on – but the extreme texture means it collects serious amounts of gunk. It needs a lot of soaping or scrubbing or both – and plenty of rinsing, and then a look over again once it’s dry.

But much as I hate washing up, the Tantus Splash is worth it.

It’s beautiful, it’s tactile, and even now I’ve got my head around it, it surprises and overwhelms me in an entirely good way.

Review: Fifty Shades of Grey Drive Me Crazy dildo

I’m almost ashamed to be publishing this review the week that film came out (it’s actually not bad; more of that in another post, perhaps). But it’s taken me this long to be able to break down how I feel about the snappily-named Fifty Shades of Grey Drive Me Crazy glass dildo.

That’s because, like Bex’s Vixskin Mustang, this is something of a go-to toy, one that makes it difficult for me to give others a good run.

Fifty Shades of Grey Drive Me Crazy profile

Here I am, with a dildo that I rely on – that had a starring role in my first ever Sinful Sunday – and because of that, that I’ve found extremely difficult to review. It just works.

It’s a toy, that like the publishing phenomenon behind it, has the potential to divide opinion. The features that make it such a consistent performer for me are deal breakers for others.

Fifty Shades of Grey Drive Me Crazy profileFirst off, those raised points. I’m a fan of texture, but the first few times I tried this toy they hurt. Too pointy, too raised, too much for my vaginal wall. I know I’m not the only person to have found this to be the case – when discussing toys over a glass or two of Prosecco in She Said at Christmas, others said they found it “too knobbly” to be pleasurable.

My changed response to those knobbles is in part from an adjustment to my medication. Last summer I was on less citalopram than I am now – seasonal and life changes conspired to get me back on 20mg a day around October – and for about a month I had no idea what was going on with my body sexually again. (This is what even tiny alterations to medication can do to your sex life – give yourself time to adjust, but be vigilant.)

But at the same time I found I really enjoyed the cool – cold – sensation, and the shape of the toy. If I angled it right, so the knobbles just grazed the front wall of my vagina, I got the G-spot stimulation I loved, and something else – something new and different and deeply enjoyable. I know now that was the start of my foray into vaginal orgasms, but at the time it was simply an added, fleeting, shiver-inducing, benefit.

As I grew used to it, I found I was focusing less and less on the G-spotting element, and more and more on that grazing sensation. There are times when I think I’m in the mood for girth or G-spot play, but when I get going I find myself yearning – really yearning – for texture and sensation further down my vaginal canal instead. At that point, I inevitably reach for one of two dildos – the Tantus Echo, or this.

The other thing I really loved about this dildo when I first got it was that I could forego the lube to a degree. When I was younger I didn’t like getting wet. I felt so little anyway that the loss of friction caused by my natural lubrication, never mind additional lube, meant even less sensation for me; I was convinced that my body was conspiring against me in that regard. If only I’d had glass toys back then!

It’s comforting in an odd way to know I have something smooth and effective that doesn’t need much in the way of preparing for. That grab-and-go aspect also means I get the extra thrill of the cold glass in a hot place.

It can take me from zero to orgasm in less time than it takes to reach body temperature.

This is unheard of.

For that reason I have it on standby almost every time I masturbate – especially when I’m finding my way around a new toy and may well be enjoying the sensations, but can feel myself growing frustrated that it’s not quite scratching the itch.

Fifty Shades of Grey Drive Me Crazy tip

It’s also fantastic for those times I just need to come.

I’ve finally treated myself to the Tantus Splash, and oh, wow, I want to luxuriate in all the tiny nuances of every bump and dribble moulded into it – but even so, the first time I settled in with it, I found myself tired and revved up and needing to bring things to a satisfactory conclusion so I stood a chance of being productive the following morning. I reached for the Fifty Shades Drive Me Crazy… Moments later I was a very happy bunny finally capable of sleep.

I know it won’t be like this for others.

But if you know you need more to get you off than the average person, if you like your texture uncompromising, if you like thrusting, if you tend towards impatience – you should really give the Drive Me Crazy a go.

I got mine from the incomparable She Said (now in a gorgeous new shop, which I helped clean), but you can also find the Fifty Shades of Grey Drive Me Crazy glass dildo at Lovehoney, amongst other places.

Review: Lovehoney Spiral Sensual Glass Dildo

Shortly after giving the Lovehoney Spiral Sensual Glass Dildo a couple of outings, I had this to say:@TheShingleBeach on Twitter: You have chosen wisely

It’s my second all-glass dildo, joining the Fifty Shades of Grey Drive Me Crazy in my toy box. But they’re very different toys. While the FSOG can take me from zero to orgasm in a ridiculously short time, the Lovehoney Spiral is a much more subtle proposition.

Lovehoney Spiral Sensual Glass Dildo - in full

That’s despite being a much bigger toy. It’s nine inches long, with a flat, wide, grab-able base – which means almost all of it is insertable. At 1.6” in diameter at the bulb’s widest point, it’s quite girthy – and being glass it doesn’t have any give. The spiral is delicately pink and about an eighth of an inch deep with a smooth, rounded, profile.

Lovehoney Spiral Sensual Glass Dildo - shaft and head

When I first got it, I couldn’t make out whether I was imagining the slight tilt to the shaft or not. I resorted to getting my ruler out and checking it against that. It’s there all right, although it’s slight. So that would make it good for G-spotting, right?

Er, no.

Well, not for me, anyway.

The subtlety of that angle means that while the size and shape of the head are ideal, you really need to know which way up it is in use. I know I have sensitivity issues sometimes, but my G-spot and I are well acquainted. No matter how much I tilt this toy towards the front of my vagina: nothing.

It may be partly to do with the fact that my G-spot only really responds to thrusting motions – it doesn’t benefit from the constant pressure I find this dildo is better at providing.

It’s also quite probably the case that I gave up before working out how to hold it to keep the pressure in the right spot.

The Lovehoney heart on the base is the right way up when the curve is pointing up, not that you can see this when it’s in use. Of more use is the knowledge that the spiral starts in the dimple of the heart – that is, having that uppermost when you’re lying on your back puts the point of the dildo as far to the front of your vagina as it can be.

Lovehoney Spiral Sensual Glass Dildo Base

If this sounds like I’m griping, I’m really not.

This dildo is, as I said, a subtle beast. It takes a shift in attitude and approach to really enjoy it.

Once I got over the urge to attack my G-spot like there was no tomorrow, and settled in for a long, slow, relaxing session it paid off.

The larger head and pronounced spiral texture reward long slow thrusts, deep insertion, and being turned like a corkscrew – so no part of my vaginal walls misses out on the sensation. Using it like this  gives rise to kind of feeling the Tantus Echo and FSOG Drive Me Crazy create in the front of my vagina but all around it.

The length and rigidity make for a comfortably filling sensation, and once I’m warmed up it’s more than pleasant being able to feel it nudging my cervix.

Being glass it’s fantastic for temperature play. I’m a fan of cold toys, and glass takes a good five to ten minutes to lose its chill depending on how much friction it’s subjected to. The weight and the texture make up slightly for the diminishing pleasure as the dildo reaches body temperature, but a glass of cold water nearby is all that’s required to refresh the experience.

As I find it most enjoyable in long lazy sessions, I’m yet to come using it. At the moment I’m going through a phase of needing intense stimulation in multiple locations simultaneously to orgasm. This is too languorous to take me over the edge – and it feels wrong to vibrate my clitoris senseless while being so purposely slow and indulgent elsewhere.

That’s not a minus point, by the way. It’s very different from my usual masturbatory experience; something of a relief in comparison to the somewhat more focused, time-constrained, sessions I usually manage these days. It’s the sort of experience that were I to have more hands for extra stimulation elsewhere – you know, if the Chap was nearby – might well have a very different ending.

Lovehoney Spiral Sensual Glass Dildo - base first

Another plus is how I feel afterwards: Used.

The ghost of the sensation lasts longer with the Lovehoney Spiral Sensual Glass Dildo than with my others – presumably because of the lack of resolution.

I can feel the spiral texture – and, ironically, the head – for quite some time after I’m done playing, leaving me happily twitchy.

It took me a while to get used to, and it requires a little more time and effort than my go-to dildos, but the Spiral is well worth savouring.

(Bonus: Sunset witnessed while taking the pictures for this post)Sunset over the beach, Hove