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The Ultimate Beginner's Guide to Sex Toys

 My First Blush Posted by My First Blush on

Whether you’re a man or a woman, the right sex toy can drastically change your sex life. Sex toys, although seemingly taboo, have been around for centuries in some form or another. We’ve gone way past the ancient Greek tradition of using bread sticks and olive oil and phallic dildos made of silt stone.

These days, modern sex toys are made from environmentally-friendly and healthy materials for use on our most delicate parts. They have the latest technology, so you can go from zero to orgasm as quickly (or as slowly) as you want. The world of sex toys has definitely changed for the better, but for the uninitiated, it can be confusing and overwhelming with so many choices on the market. This beginner’s guide to sex toys should help you decide what the best toy(s) is for you, how you can purchase those toys, and how you can care for it so that your relationship with your toy is a long and fruitful one.

What Are Sex Toys?

Sex toys are literally any item that you add to your solo or shared sexual activity. They range from dildos to vibrators to cock rings and ropes. Any item can become a sex toy, but that might not be hygienic or healthy.


Loverboy The Boy in Blue with Suction Cup

Usually phallic shaped, dildos are used for penetration and internal stimulation. They are often available in many sizes, colors, materials and yes, textures. They are the perfect first toy for someone who wants to start off with something easy. Some dildos even vibrate for extra sensations! Use lots of lube and you'll find that a dildo can be a great addition to your bedroom.

Learn more: Dildo Guides


Similar to a dildo, but with a vibrating component, many a woman has discovered her first orgasm using a vibrator for clitoral play. There are many shapes and sizes, as well as technologies for vibrators today. Whether battery powered or rechargeable, there are vibrators for every person on the market. Some, like the well-known rabbit vibrator, offer both penetration and clitoral stimulation, and even g-spot stimulation, simultaneously. Each vibrator has its own intensity level and if you don’t have prior experience with vibrators, you may be best to choose one with a lower vibration level to start.

Bullet vibrators, which are similar to a regular vibrator, but with a smaller and more discreet size, aren’t meant for penetration. Useful for both solo play and with a partner, a bullet vibrator is solely meant for clitoral stimulation. It is another great first toy for those who are intimidated by the number of choices on the market and for women who have yet to reach their first orgasm.

Learn more: Vibrator Guides

Cock Rings

Screaming-O OHare Wearable Rabbit Silicone Vibrating Cock Ring

For use with a male partner, a cock ring is a toy that stretches over the penis and provides stimulation to both partners during penetrative sex. There are vibrating cock rings, along with ones that just provide stimulation based on their shape and texture. Cock rings can also help a man maintain an erection longer, as it prevents blood from flowing back down out of the penis.

Learn more: Cock Ring Guides

Male Sex Toys

Fleshlight GO Surge

Sex toys weren’t just made for women – men can use them too – and there is a large line of sex toys for men on the market, perfect for any beginner. Male masturbators are literally what they sound like – sleeves made of a soft, gel-like material for which the man can insert his penis and then proceed to masturbate as usual. They can offer the realistic feeling of penetration and there are some that are also vagina, butt or mouth-shaped that are not only tactile, but visually appealing.

Learn more: Male Sex Toy Guides

Anal Sex Toys

X-10 Graduated Jelly Anal Beads

Anal sex toys are different from other sex toys because they are specifically meant for penetration into the anus. The reason for this is that they usually have a handle or a larger base, which is a safety precaution, meant to ensure that the toy doesn’t get drawn up into the anal cavity and then get stuck. It is important for beginners of anal sex toys to realize that this can happen and that they should only use sex toys meant for anal usage. Anal beads are a perfect first toy for a beginner, as they provide light stimulation and are small enough not to intimidate. Both men and women can use anal sex toys, alone or with a partner and with or without other stimulation toys.

Learn more: Anal Sex Toy Guides

Ben Wa Balls & Love Eggs

LELO Luna Pleasure Bead System

There are many shapes, sizes and styles of love eggs or balls, which are egg or ball-shaped devices that are inserted into the vagina and provide a pelvic floor workout, along with stimulation. Ben wa balls are the most popularly known tool for strengthening vaginal muscles and are weighted balls that are put into the vagina and held there by the muscles. Love eggs and jiggle balls are other forms of the same type of device, but that have a vibrating component.

Bondage Toys

Sportsheets Under the Bed Restraint System

There is a large array of bondage toys on the market, starting as simple as a feather teaser, all the way up to nipple clamps. In between, there are handcuffs, blindfolds, chastity devices, and floggers. Bondage toys are a great way to spice up a vanilla sex life. Start off slow, use a safe word, and remember that communication is essential.

Learn more: Bondage Guides

What Are The Best Sex Toy Materials?

While the material of your sex toy will come down to your own personal preference, it is good to know the ins and outs of why a material is used and what benefits it has to the user. Here are the most common sex toy materials on the market.

Plastic Toys

Doc Johnson's Velvet Touch 7 Inch Vibrator

Cheap, hygienic, and it definitely does the job, plastic is a mainstay in the sex toy industry. Used for dildos, vibrators, anal toys and more, plastic is easy to clean and maintain. It also has no taste or odor and can be used with a wide variety of lubes without the fear of it breaking down. Plastic is great for beginners and advanced users alike and will last a long time.

Silicone Toys

We-Vibe Sync Couples Vibrator

Take a step up from plastic and you’ve got silicone. While silicone sex toys may cost more, they feel more realistic, are hypoallergenic and are more durable. They also hold body temperatures better and are easy on the skin. You do need to care for your silicone toys in a different way than you would your plastic toys, as silicone lubricants can cause damage to your fairly-pricy toys.

Glass Toys

Fifty Shades of Grey Drive Me Crazy Glass Wand

Mainly used in dildos, glass is a material that should not be kept out of the bedroom. These pretty toys can be heated or cooled for a different sensation that offers more versatility than plastic or silicone dildos. As well, they are extremely easy to clean and more durable than you’d think. Glass toys can last a lifetime with proper care and use.

Metal Toys

XR Triad Medium Triple Cock Ring Set

An interesting material choice for sex toys, metal toys are strong and durable, as well as waterproof. You can use them with any lubricant and they will last forever. Most metal toys are made from stainless steel, but you can get higher-end silver and gold toys too. Metal toys (along with glass) also can last a lifetime with proper care - be sure to dry thoroughly and use a toy cleaner or warm soapy water.

How to Choose Your First Sex Toy

Choosing your first toy can be an overwhelming process, with many shapes, styles and materials available. The trick here is to consider what you like and what you want to add to your sex life. You may want to start small and work your way up to different and more advanced toys. Ask yourself what you prefer: penetration or external stimulation.

If clitoral stimulation is important to you, a vibrating toy may be the best way for you to achieve orgasm. A bullet vibrator is the perfect first clitoral stimulating toy. A regular vibrator is also a very versatile tool, because you can use it for clitoral stimulation, as well as penetration, once you’ve worked yourself up to that point.

If penetration is what you desire, a vibrator is again a good toy, because of its versatility, but if you aren’t at all interested in anything that buzzes, a dildo may be your best bet.

The size of the toy is also going to come down to personal preference. As a beginner, you may not want to start off with a large toy if it is going to be used for penetration. Similarly, you’ll want to start with a vibrator that has a variable vibration mode, so you can customize how you use and up the intensity when you need to.

How We Measure The CircumferenceFor the men, size and material are also going to be a concern when buying your first sex toy. Be sure to be realistic about the size you need when purchasing so that you get the best usage and sensation from the toy. Check out how Mindful measures our toys to give you a better idea of what you need.

Your budget may also determine the type of toy you buy, along with the material you use. The good news is that there are a variety of each type of toy at every budget. If you have allergies or sensitivities, you may want to spend the extra money to get a toy of better quality.

How to Buy Sex Toys

Buying sex toys is a lot easier now than it was even five or ten years ago. There are many stores with knowledgeable staff that can help make your purchase easy. Even better, buying online is one of the best ways to buy your first sex toy. What’s great about buying online is that you can read about the toy you are interested in without wondering who is looking over your shoulder in the store. You can examine the images and decide if the toy is right for you. As well, you can read the reviews of other users and take their comments into consideration when buying.

We offer a risk-free buying experience, which means that you can return your toy within 90 days if the toy wasn’t up to your expectations. Everything will be shipped to you discreetly, so that your neighbors aren’t aware of what sort of package you are receiving.

How to Care for Your Sex Toys

Your sex toys are an investment and should be treated like so. You want to care for them as best you can to ensure their longevity and that they work as they should for many years to come. Here are the most important tips for caring for your new sex toy.

  • Always wash your toy after every use

The last thing you want to do with your sex toy is throw it in a drawer after you use it until the next time you need it. After every use, you should be washing your toy with a material-specific cleaner, paying attention to any nooks and crannies that need cleaning out. The easiest way to clean your non-porous sex toys is to use just a soft, damp cloth and wipe it down. This includes any toy made of silicone, plastic, metal or glass. You could also rinse it under the tap and use soap and water. Sex toy cleaners are also very helpful for this purpose. Many enthusiasts boil and sanitize their sex toys but be sure to only do that for toys that don’t have electronic components. For porous materials, like rubber, jelly, vinyl, leather, or nylon, your care regime will depend on the type of material. Because they are porous, bacteria have a better chance of thriving on these toys, so be sure that you do give it a deep clean, using hot water and a mild soap.

While silicone-based lubricants are usually the most enjoyable for their silky and long-lasting properties, they can be damaging to your sex toys, especially the silicone or rubber ones. Try to use a water-based lube with your sex toys.

  • Store your toys properly

Having a dedicated area for your toys is important and will help keep them clean after you’ve washed them. But, be sure that your toys don’t touch each other as some will have reactions to the materials in the other toys. Many come with handy storage bags, so use these when you store your toys.

  • Don’t share your toys

Sex toys are truly meant for the individual and shouldn’t be shared. While some toys are meant for partner play, others are meant for solo use (even in a partnership situation). Whether you’ve cleaned the toy between use or not, it is best if you do not share your sex toy.

  • Change your toys when they need changing

If you notice that your toy’s material is breaking down or there is some damage, stop using that toy and get a new one. This is a great opportunity to move to a new toy that you have yet to try or one that offers more than your previous toy did.

Now that you are more educated on sex toys for beginners, look around the website for the best first toy for you. Go wild and have fun – that’s what it’s all about!