We-Vibe Ditto

So November is here, the month of gunpowder, treason, and plot – Thanksgiving if you’re across the pond – and Black Friday seemingly everywhere now. It’s also a reminder to me that I’ve had this little toy in my possession for a year now, and it’s about time that I put my thoughts down on paper.

Following on from my recent review of the Hush, here’s one that’s long overdue.

 

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Tantus Capsule Plug

Hello my lovelies! I apologise for the short hiatus here, but unfortunately sometimes life does manage to get in the way of blogging. It’s a beautiful day outside, and I thought I’d sit down and get my Carrie Bradshaw on, and try to hammer out a few reviews. 

First up is this gorgeous Capsule Plug from Tantus!

The Capsule is the second piece in Tantus’s new line of Steampunk-inspired toys, designed in collaboration with SheVibe. The first, of course, being the incredible Steam Hunk dildo, which I encourage you to check out the review for if you haven’t already. 
As with the Steam Hunk the Capsule comes in a choice of two colours: a standard black, and an absolutely drop-dead gorgeous shimmering copper. (Seriously, why would anyone not pick the copper!?)

This time around though we’re also offered a choice in sizes, with a standard model, and a “petite” capsule, for the less-explored final frontiers. As usual I will primarily be focusing on the larger plug, but just to give a quick idea of the size difference, the standard plug is 5″ tall, 3 7/8″ insertable, and 5 1/4″ circumference, while the Petite is 4″ tall, 3″ insertable, and 4 1/8″ circumference. 
Unusually for Tantus the plug is made from their SuperSoft silicone – something typically reserved for their realistic dildos – rather than their standard formula, but this is actually very smart because the plug has a lot of texture going on, and in my experience heavy texture + firm silicone is a recipe for discomfort. 
The design of the Capsule is supposed to like part of an antique spacecraft, almost akin to something from the Jules Verne novel “From the Earth to the Moon,” and everything from the tapered shape to the exquisite detailing all over the surface reflects this perfectly. I can’t help but find myself unconsciously humming along to Dinah Washington’s “Destination Moon” when I’m looking at it. 
The basic shape of the Capsule is more or less that of traditional buttplug; there’s a very nicely tapered body which comes to a point at one end, a slender neck just below it, and then a quite generous base at the bottom to ensure safety during use. The body of the plug is fashioned as the habitable part of the Capsule, and features a porthole on either side, with the rest of it made to look as though it’s built from panels of sheet metal, riveted and banded together in early-industrial style. The neck and base together form the rocket engine, looking like a Victorian twist on the throat and nozzle of the massive engines we see quivering beneath the modern-day Space Shuttle shortly prior to launch. This aspect of the design does help to explain the bulk of the base, because anything other than a circular shape wouldn’t have been in-keeping with the overall appearance. It’s a really delightful toy to look at, and you can tell that someone put a lot of effort into sculpting the original piece, just by the sheer level of detail.
In terms of use the Capsule inserts nice and easily thanks to its very tapered tip, but you’ll probably want to use a bit of extra lube to coat all of that texture, as it both adds to the surface area and creates a little extra friction / resistance. You can definitely feel the level of texture as the skin slides over it, and thanks to the softness of the silicone it’s not an uncomfortable sensation, but just feels like an added something of interest to be aware of. Inside the body you do get a little bit of fullness, but nothing too overwhelming as it is only a modestly-sized plug, so it’s great for someone just looking for something casual to play with on an every day basis. The bulky base nestles very comfortably between the buttocks, but realistically if you compare it to a more slimline base it’s going to feel a touch obtrusive, but what’s also nice about that SuperSoft silicone is that both the neck and base feel squishy, so you can squeeze all your muscles around it and it comfortably reacts, rather than feeling like some solid lump there. You can even quite easily sit down while wearing the plug, without any discomfort. 
In terms of long-term wearing, this is the one place where I feel that the Capsule doesn’t do so well. The more time you have the plug in, the more the water-based lubricant on it will dry up, any eventually even that subtle texture around the neck and base will start to tug and rub on the skin, making you aware of it. It’s a slight drawback, but it all depends how long you want to use a plug for. In terms of short-term wearing you’ll definitely notice a slight difference in sensation around the sphincter, compared to a completely smooth plug, but not any discomfort, so it’s well suited to that. 
When it comes to removing the plug, again it slides out just as easily as it went in. You’ll feel the texture, but because that lube that was on the plug doesn’t dry up internally, it’ll ease it on its way.
I will quickly mention about cleaning the plug. Because there’s such a high level of detail in the design, there are a lot of nooks and crannies for dirt to get trapped, so you’ll want to rinse it almost immediately, and pay extra attention when cleaning. Luckily there are lots of sterilisation options for silicone toys, so it’s not too much trouble to get it feeling fresh and new again. 
I have to thank Tantus for sending me the Capsule. It’s a great little plug, and I’d highly recommend it to anyone who loves quirky designs in their sex toys!
It’s available directly from their website

Prisms Triplets

This week I’m going to be looking at my second product provided by the folks over at TooTimid.com, the Triplets graduated butt plug set from Prisms Erotic Glass.

The Prisms Triplets are a set of three clear glass butt plugs, ranging in size from very small to a modest medium, and are aimed primarily at anyone looking for a gentle introduction to anal play.
It’s quite a cute little trio of plugs, and looks almost like a set of inconspicuous ornaments when you arrange them together on a table. They have quite a squat shape, with a teardrop bulb, a short neck, and a narrow base, like a spade on a set of playing cards. 
Each plug is sized accordingly:

  • Smallest: Total length – 2 3/8″. Circumference – 4 1/2″
  • Middle: Length – 2 3/4″. Circumference – 5 1/4″
  • Largest: Length – 3 1/4″. Circumference – 5 3/4″
As you can see from the measurements they’re very much a beginner set, and aren’t intended to give that stretch or fullness that more advanced anal players will be looking for, but there’s still a nice amount of variety for those just starting out.

The plugs are very easy to insert thanks to their gentle taper, smooth surface, and modest size. As they’re made from glass it’s also one of those rare occasions where you get the pleasure of using a silicone lube with a toy, and a little dab is more than sufficient and will last a long time. Some people often express concern about the firmness of glass when it comes to first time anal use, but the plugs are actually very comfortable when you take due time with them, and will gently part the muscles and glide into place.
The benefit of having three plugs of different sizes is that it’s very easy to make the jump from one to the next. They all seem to complement each other, and once you feel that you’ve conquered one you can work your way up to the next gradually, without the leap in size being too great. 
One thing I dislike about the plugs is the size of the neck on them. It’s barely 3/8″ long, and this simply isn’t sufficient. For a plug to feel secure during use there needs to be space for the sphincter to rest along it, but when the Triplets are inserted to their maximum extent you can feel the internal sphincter muscle resting against the underside of the bulb and remaining dilated by it, creating a situation where they are more prone to slip out. To try to keep them in place you need to clench the external sphincter up against the neck, which isn’t ideal, and doesn’t allow you to simply insert one and then forget about it during prolonged wear. 
The other issue I had with the plugs is that the base itself is barely any wider than the thickest point of the bulb, which can present a safety issue. I had an incident when inserting the smallest plug where I managed to accidentally push the entire thing into my body, base and all, which as you might imagine can cause some alarm. When the sphincter is already relaxed enough and stretched for a given sized toy, it’s going to take very little effort for it to swallow up a base of a similar size. If you couple this with the neck issue, it’s very easy to keep on pushing the plug in, looking for that moment when it’ll feel secure, and by that moment you’ve already gone too far, so it’s a point of caution really. 
For these reasons I’d have to draw two conclusions about these plugs. The first being that they work better as a dilator set than they do as plugs. Hopping from one to the next is a good way to slowly train your sphincter to accept larger things, but the lack of an adequate neck makes them really impractical for actually wearing around. The second is that I wouldn’t recommend that anyone other than a complete novice use the smallest plug, because unless you’re so tight that you can barely handle a finger, there’s just too high a risk of you losing the plug inside.
Some of the advantages of glass toys include that they’re great for temperature play. If you toss them into a bucket of ice water before use then you’ll get a wonderful chill when you slip them inside you. Another thing I always find fun about clear glass toys is the aesthetic during use, because it provides a unique portal into the body, which otherwise wouldn’t be accessible. There’s always an aspect of curiosity to take a peek in the mirror and observe how exactly your body looks from the inside, or whilst stretched by a plug. 
A nice feature of the Prisms set is that each plug comes with its own little velvet storage bag, so you can pack them away safely after use. 
I have to say, while I do really like the idea of the Prisms Triplets set, I am a little disappointed by the final design. If they had a longer neck and a slightly wider base then they’d be perfect, but as they stand they have a couple of drawbacks which I’d urge anyone to take into account when considering a purchase. 
Many thanks to TooTimid.com for sending me the Prisms Triplets, and they’re available right now from their website!

b-Vibe Rimming Plug Petite

 
Last week I arrived back to a lovely little surprise from Lovehoney, a swanky new b-Vibe Rimming plug which they’d kindly sent me as part of their on-site review programme. I told myself I’d try to keep it pithy, as not everyone wants to read an essay before buying a sex toy, but then I found that I had so many things to say about it that I failed rather spectacularly on that front.
If you’d like to read what I thought of it then head below!

When I first heard that someone had made a rimming plug I’ll admit I was a little sceptical about the idea, but also rather excited as I’m a sucker for something new and off the beaten path.
Of all the things I’ve tried of late this plug is easily one of the most unique, thanks to the inclusion of rotating beads in the neck, which actively stimulate the anus. We all think of this region as an erogenous zone – hence the existence of analingus as an increasingly popular sex act – and yet most anal toys tend to ignore it entirely, in favour of focussing predominantly on internal stimulation. It’s impressive how effective the action of the beads actually is, and as soon as you turn it on you can immediately feel the little bumps moving around, as different points of pressure traverse the sphincter. It’s a fascinating sensation, half tickling, half massaging, and all very stimulating. You can even gently clench the muscle to apply extra pressure and increase the feeling, and happily the plug is powerful enough to withstand this without the motor stopping.

The plug can be operated in two different ways, and with differing results. Using the button on the base you can cycle through nine different pre-set patterns. Some of these use only the rotary motor, while some incorporate the plug’s internal vibrating motor as well, and a couple have it vibrating alone. The other way to use it is via the included remote. The remote allows you to independently set the pattern for each motor, so you can couple one rotation speed you like with your favourite vibration mode. The remote also allows you to adjust the strength of the vibrations to your preference, though they’re always at their highest when you operate it via the button, so you can only really adjust the intensity down.

The remote is actually a good piece of kit. It feels a little light and flimsy, but it has good signal strength, so you can still control the plug under a couple of layers of clothing, or with it a reasonable distance away. The only downside with the remote is that there are so many combinations of settings that it can be easy to get a little lost, which did make me miss the visual display you get from wireless toys that can be operated via a phone app, as with some of We-Vibe’s newer products.

The vibrations from the plug aren’t the strongest in the world, but it would be wrong to try to compare them to something like a prostate massager. They act to complement the rotary action and they do so well, creating a really pleasant all round sensation. On some occasions I did find that all the sensations seemed to blend together, making the rimming feature of the plug feel less apparent, so it can be nice to use it with the vibrations disabled.

In terms of noise the plug isn’t all that discreet. The vibrating function is almost whisper quiet inside the body, but the mechanical action of the rimming feature does make quite a noticeable whirring sound, limiting where you can use it. Behind a closed door and you’re perfectly safe with it, but out in public and you might get a few strange looks. 

This plug is classed as being the “petite” version, but I think it’s probably the perfect size, and I say that as someone who does generally enjoy toys on the larger end of the scale. What I like about this plug especially is the insertable length, because at 4 inches it’s really comfortable for every day wear. The main body is long enough that the bulb of the plug can nestle up against the entire prostate, but it doesn’t go so deep that it runs the risk of poking you anywhere uncomfortably, especially if you try to use it in a seated position.

The one area I wouldn’t mind it being a little bigger is in terms of girth, because I do appreciate that sensation of greater fullness, and the addition of a thicker neck could increase the intensity felt from the rimming action. As it stands though I’m happy with the size and it’s sufficient to still feel really good.

The plug itself is really easy to take care of. It’s made from velvety-soft seamless silicone which you can sterilise after use, and the magnetic charging port is a breeze to use.

I’ve had a lot of fun with this toy and I’d definitely recommend it to anyone looking for something new. Many thanks to Lovehoney for sending it to me for review, and you can go grab one right now from Lovehoney.co.uk or Lovehoney.com

Fun Factory B-Balls Duo

Let me tell you a quick little story about the sort of company that Fun Factory is. 
A couple of years ago they released the first incarnation of their B-Balls butt plug, and I was generously sent one to review. It was a fantastic plug, but the one little niggle I had was with the base, so I devoted a whole portion of my review to discussing this and suggesting ways that it could be improved, and I even ended by Photoshopping a quick mock-up of my perfect design
Flash forward to six months ago and someone left a comment on my review saying that Fun Factory had changed the design, so I went off to investigate and sure enough the new B-Balls Duo addresses every single point that I made. I was astounded. I honestly can’t stress just how impressed I am that Fun Factory listened to all this feedback and then acted on it. It’s a wonderful reflection on how consumer-oriented they really are.
Now I have my hands on the new B-Balls Duo, and it’s time to update the review, so head below for more!

I’ve always considered myself to be quite lucky as a male sex toy reviewer, because the sky really is the limit when it comes to what I can use. There are products I can insert myself into, such as Fleshjacks and the Cobra Libre, and then there are toys I can put inside me, from dildos to butt plugs, and even special vibrators. That metal G-spot tool people rave about? Its great for prostate massage. That high powered clitoral vibe everyone loves? It works wonders on my frenulum. I’ve even managed to re-purpose a bright pink rabbit as an anal vibrator and perineum massager.

Every now and again, however, there comes along a toy which really is only for the opposite sex, and then I sit there wistfully pondering exactly what it might feel like for them to use it. For the longest time one of those products was kegel balls: those hollow spheres containing a free-moving ball bearing, which women insert in order to tone their pelvic floor muscles. Also referred to in those 50 Shades circles by the cringe-worthy moniker “jiggle balls.” Up until a couple of years ago you’d have to have been slightly foolish to try such a product as a man, because with only a rudimentary retrieval system they’re the sort of small objects that can easily disappear inside a rectum, but then Fun Factory finally came up with the answer, in the form of their B-Balls plugs.

The B-Balls Duo is in essence Fun Factory’s “Smartballs Duo” kegel balls, but repackaged as a butt plug with a flared anal-safe base. In many ways it’s almost a surprise that no one thought to do it sooner – perhaps no one thought there would be a demand – but I’m certainly happy that it now exists, and that I can try it out.
In general terms of being a butt plug the B-Balls Duo isn’t actually all that large, neatly placing it in that size range which caters to the widest number of people. In terms of length you have 4 1/2″ insertable, and the circumference of the various sections is as follows: 1st bulb – 4 1/4″. 2nd bulb – 4 3/4″. Neck – 2 1/4″. It’s clearly not the most girthy plug in the world, so I’d be happy suggesting that almost anyone bar a complete novice would be fine using it, but it’s also not a plug which relies entirely on size to create stimulation, so don’t rule it out yet if you’re someone who likes a stretch.

The B-Balls Duo is constructed with Fun Factory’s usual selection of high quality body-safe materials – namely silicone and ABS plastic – and to their high production standards as well, so you can feel reassured that you’re getting a top notch piece of German engineering. The actual manner in which the design is put together is rather interesting from a technical standpoint. There are two hollow spheres made from a hard grey plastic, each containing a single ball-bearing, and these in turn are held together by a silicone outer shell which is firmly bonded to the exterior surface of the plastic, and which makes up the remainder of the shape of the plug. What’s unusual is that sections of the grey plastic have purposely been left visible, and aren’t covered by the silicone, giving a rather attractive design feature, but it’s hard to know if this was decided upon purely for aesthetics, or as necessity during the moulding process. The downside to this design element is the presence of a slight groove that runs between the plastic and the silicone, creating a place for dirt to readily gather and making it somewhat harder to clean, which isn’t ideal for a toy that’s going to be used anally. It’s just as well that the materials are all non-porous and can be sterilised by boiling, or soaking in a 10% bleach solution, allowing you to freshen the whole thing up after use.

The silicone that’s been used in the manufacturing is surprisingly firm for a Fun Factory toy, and has little-to-no give in the surface when you squeeze it. It also accounts for only a thin layer covering the plastic spheres, so it doesn’t really offer any cushioning as you might often expect. I found this especially apparent when comparing it to the vibrators in my giveaway a few years ago, as they have a slightly thicker and much softer silicone layer, giving a completely different feel. My speculation is that the firmer silicone was a requirement to make it bond so securely to the plastic, as anything softer – and therefore more elastic – could have compromised this. Despite the firmness of the silicone the thin neck between the two bulbs remains nice and flexible and can easily be bent about, and the faint mould line which runs around the toy can barely be felt on the matte surface.

The base of the B-Balls Duo is identical in design to that of some of Fun Factory’s other plugs, such as the Bootie and Boosty, and that happens to be my favourite shape of base in terms of comfort and discretion. On the Original B-Balls the base was considerably narrower, as can be seen in the photo above, so this is a big improvement.

When it comes to wearing and using the plug the B-Balls Duo is actually a lot of fun, and it all starts with a hassle-free insertion thanks to a size and shape which it lets slip into the body with minimal effort. Once the plug’s inside it settles into a comfortable position, with the joint between the two bulbs bending to correspond with the curvature of the rectum, while the sphincter comes to rest around the slender neck. For me the total length of the plug is just right, and it sits in place without poking at the top of the rectum, which sometimes can be an issue with anything longer. The small base nestles itself away between the buttocks quite discreetly, allowing it to remain unseen beneath clothing, and its low profile allows you to happily sit on it on any surface hard or soft.

At first it feels, for the most part, just like wearing any other plug. There’s this awareness of something being inside you, and it delivers that familiar pleasant sensation, but without feeling overly filling or stretching. The exciting things start to happen when you move though, and the ball bearings inside begin to roll around in response. It’s one of those experiences that’s almost fitting to be described as unique, but the closest thing I could compare it to is a feeling of a juddering vibration. Every slightest movement of the balls is instantly brought to your attention as they skip along the inner surface of the spheres, jump from side to side, and swing through a series of loops. You have this constant sense of the weight shifting about inside you as they move, and because there are two balls moving in different ways at the same time the weight doesn’t shift in balance, with forces throwing around in different directions simultaneously like a mini earthquake within your nether regions. This is what generates that feeling of vibration, and in fact if you examine how any vibrator works they all involve a motor spinning an unbalanced weight around – exactly the same principle. What’s notably good about it all is that it’s a deep sort of vibration you feel when it occurs, like an intermittent rumble.

What makes the sensation of the B-Balls Duo so novel is the responsiveness of it; it reacts entirely to you and your movements. It’s very different to a vibrating plug that just purrs away constantly allowing you to become accustomed to it. The sensation can take you by surprise, delivering a little jolt when you weren’t expecting it, and it also acts as a constant reminder that you do in fact have a plug inserted. Mentally this can be quite fun if you decide to go out and about with this little secret, and find yourself constantly teased by these sensations while no one else is any the wiser. I can almost imagine someone sitting on a bus and giving out a little giggle each time it hits a speed bump and the plug tickles them inside with a small flutter. The other thing that’s tempting to do with it is to experiment with seeing just how much feeling you can actually get out of it, and how varied it can feel all depending on your activities. Go jogging, do jumping jacks, try skipping rope or hula-hooping; any sort of exercise be it at home or in the gym. Wear it when you go dancing in club; try twerking with the person you’ve been flirting with all night and see if it improves your rhythm. It can all be quite amusing to go through and it feels good at the same time, and definitely different. It’s the perfect way to spice up even the most mundane activity, such as wearing it while you vacuum the carpets, or walk the dog.

One thing I did find was that depending on how vigorous your movement is, you can actually hear a bit of a rattle coming from the plug. I did go to the effort of recording it on my phone if anyone’s interested. I wouldn’t worry about this though, as for anyone else to hear it then you’d need to be in a silent room with them standing quite close, while you made jerking movements with your hips, and I can’t imagine a lot of scenarios like that, but it may take you by surprise at first if you weren’t expecting it.

Considering the plug with regard to more long-term wear, the improvements that Fun Factory has made to the base have made a massive difference. The base now nestles comfortably between the buttocks, and the feeling of it even being there at all gradually fades away into the background. Whereas previously it pinched and got sore over time, now there’s no problem with wearing the plug for the duration of an entire day.

When it comes down directly to matters of sex and masturbation then I’d be inclined to rule this plug out specifically for those purposes. There are some plugs which you wear simply for the enjoyment of feeling a plug inside you, and for me the B-Balls Duo falls very firmly into that category – this is where it excels. I don’t really see the ability of the plug to enhance an orgasm in the same way as one which is designed to press against the prostate. The B-Balls Duo works best as a sort of foreplay plug, teasing you and keeping you semi-aroused as you move around throughout the day, but once you’re lying down on your back, moving little more of your body than your right arm, then you’re not going to get the benefit of the plug’s sensations, so I don’t think it’s a fit for that situation. A lot of the time with sex toys it’s about tailoring the right equipment with the right circumstance, so it’s worth bearing that in mind with this toy, and rarely do you find a single product that absolutely does it all.

So now it’s time for a verdict on the new and improved B-Balls Duo. I have to say I really love this product, and I can see myself using it far more than I ever did the previous iteration. It still has that completely unique design feature that I strongly urge everyone to go out and experience for themselves, but it’s fixed the one big flaw that eventually proved a limiting factor in how often I used the B-Balls before. I’m still incredibly impressed with how Fun Factory responded by correcting the base, and now I can fully recommend this plug with no caveats. It really is a lot of fun.

Thanks to Fun Factory for sending me the new version of this plug. It’s available from the lovely people at Lovehoney UK, Lovehoney U.S, Nice ‘n’ Naughty, or SheVibe.