Icicles No. 05

This month the lovely people over at Simply Pleasure got in touch with me and asked if I’d like to review a couple of items for them, and of course I said that I’d be more than happy to.
The first product they sent me is the Icicles No. 05 by Pipedream. I’m a definite fan of glass toys, and since I reviewed the Icicles No. 37 last month I’ve been eager to try some more products from this range You can see what I thought after the jump!

The Icicles No. 05 is a glass dildo from Pipedream. It’s a vaguely phallic toy in design, with a bulbous tip and gently curved shaft, but it also includes some wide ridges down the length for added stimulation.
In total the toy measures 7″ in length, with 6 1/2″ insertable, which I consider to be a good size for a dildo; it’s almost the Goldilocks of lengths, not too big, not too small. The tip of the No. 05 is shaped to resemble the head of a penis, and its rounded end gently tapers out to a maximum circumference of 4 1/2″. Below the head the shaft of the dildo is narrower, measuring only 3 3/4″ around. The shaft itself has a gentle upward curve, and its surface is smooth, with the exception of a single raised band which wraps around it like a helter skelter and increases the circumference to 4 1/4″. This band forms 4 distinct ridges along the surface, which are positioned slightly differently on each side due to the spiral. At the bottom of the shaft is a 1 7/8″ wide circular base, which is flared enough to guarantee that the toy is anal safe. It has a flat bottom which makes it perfect for standing the toy up on a surface, and offers enough stability to prevent it from toppling over. All in all I think it’s a really lovely design, almost attractive enough to make you want to leave out on a shelf as an ornament, but it’s not quite discreet enough for that.
The No. 05 is handcrafted in China from borosilicate glass (Pyrex) and is really well made. You won’t find any bubbles or imperfections within the material, nor unsightly scratches on the surface. It’s actually surprisingly uniform for a handmade toy, and doesn’t feature any of those little quirks or oddities which you occasionally see cropping up in similar products. It’s made largely from a completely transparent glass, but the raised spiral which snakes its way around the shaft is tinted a stunning cobalt blue. Borosilicate glass is a great material for a sex toy because it’s toughened, so there’s no chance of it accidentally shattering, and it can take a fair amount of abuse. The glass can also be subjected to wide changes in temperature without suffering any damage, which makes it great for temperature play. Whether you want to heat in up in hot water, or cool it down in the freezer, the material will respond and stay at that level. The packaging even suggests it can be warmed in the microwave, though I haven’t attempted this.
The Icicles No. 05 comes in very tasteful packaging, and I honestly couldn’t find anything to complain about. It’s packed into a thick piece of foam to protect it from impact, and then put inside a simple cardboard box. The box has a straightforward monochrome colour scheme, and features several attractive photos of the No. 05 on the faces, so you know exactly what you’re getting. If the photos aren’t enough then the front of the box also swings open like a door, allowing you a peek of what’s inside through a small plastic viewing window. Usefully the box does have some information printed on it, giving advice on how to clean the toy and heat or cool it.

The No. 05 is a really nice toy to use, and thanks to its size it should be suitable for most people, bar only complete novices. It is a little on the slim side, but when you combine that with the firmness and rigidity of the glass, and the textured surface, it acts to make the dildo feel that much bigger, so size lovers don’t be discouraged. The tip of the dildo slips easily into the body, with only the slightest amount of lube being necessary due to the frictionless nature of the smooth surface. Even though glass is a hard material there’s absolutely no discomfort to speak of as it passes through the muscle, thanks to the gently-rounded tip. Once you get past the tip you can feel a slight pop as it gives way to the narrower shaft following behind. Almost immediately as the shaft begins to slip inside you can feel the ridges from the raised area which corkscrews around it, and if you’re a fan of texture then this should really appeal to you. The ridges are pronounced enough that you can clearly feel them, almost enough to make out each individual bump, but they are rounded on the surface to prevent the feeling from being too intense. The result is that the sensation is nothing but pleasurable. You really want to go slowly at first when inserting the dildo, just to allow it to find its own path, as clearly the material can’t adjust its shape in response to your body. Due to the length of the shaft and the rigidity of the glass it’s probably not going to be a toy which you can insert all the way down to the base. Once it’s in a certain amount you can feel the tip pressing firmly against the top of the rectum and you know that that’s a good indicator not to push it any further. Despite this it still fells very comfortable inside the body, you just need to be reasonably careful with what you’re doing. The design of the ridges prevents thrusting from happening too rapidly, and thus avoids accidentally ramming the hard glass into your delicate insides, so you just want to avoid trying to sit on the toy as that’s a sure fire way to impale yourself. The base of the toy offers a convenient way to manipulate it, and it fits nicely into the grasp of your hand while using it. I found that the best way to use it was simply to gently thrust by hand and enjoy the sensation of the muscle rippling over the ridges, though if you’re careful you can stand it upright and ride it, and this is also pleasurable. Whether you’re enjoying the slow popping sensation of each ridge, or building up a little bit of speed, it’s a fun toy to thrust away with. The curve in the shaft offers some prostate stimulation, but it isn’t that forthcoming. If you’re not too certain on how to stimulate your prostate then you might struggle a little with the No. 05, but if you’re already a dab hand at it then you need only direct the tip into the right position and thrust away, and it can work quite effectively. Personally it’s not my favourite prostate toy and I like it more for its texture, but it clearly has versatility and that’s always a good feature. Surprisingly twisting the toy actually does very little; you’d assume from the design that rotating it like an Archimedes screw would produce some pleasant effects, but that isn’t so much the case, even if you twist and thrust simultaneously.

As a brief side note, visually it’s rather an interesting toy to look at during use, whilst it’s inside the body, as you can see straight down the transparent core. Obviously as it’s dark inside the body you can’t see too much, but it does produce an effect which you won’t find with many toys.
When you’re done playing with the No. 05 you’ll want to wash it, and thankfully that couldn’t be easier. Glass is a non-porous material so you can toss it in the dishwasher, boil it for a couple of minutes, or wipe it down with a 10% bleach solution, and all will leave it completely sterile. You can also just wash it with plain old anti-bacterial soap and hot water, or use a toy wipe. One area of the dildo which can be a little tricky to clean is the underside of the head. It features a moderately deep and very narrow groove, intended to mimic a feature of the glans, and here lube and dirt can gather, so you need to pay a little extra attention to it during cleaning to make sure nothing has been missed.
Overall I’d say that if you’re a fan of rigid toys, and toys with texture, then I’d happily recommend the Icicles No. 05 as a good glass anal toy. It’s really nice to look it, it’s well constructed, and those bumps on the shaft will give you a fun ride. If firm isn’t your thing, but you still want texture, check out my review of the Tantus Echo.
You can buy the Icicles No. 05 at a great price from the folks at Simply Pleasure.

Simply Pleasure

Icicles No. 37

It’s been a while since I last tried a glass toy, so when I laid my eyes on the new Icicles No. 37 I knew that I had to have it. Find out what I thought of it after the jump!

The Icicles No. 37 is a glass anal toy from Pipedream. It’s one of those toys which straddles the line between butt plug and dildo, just by the nature of its design. I’ve heard people refer to toys in this middle ground as “probes” but I just can’t use the phrase “anal probe” without thinking about people who claim to have been abducted by aliens.
In total the toy measures 6″ in length, with 3 7/8″ insertable, making it a nice, yet modest, size. The tip of the No. 37 is conical and gently tapers out to a maximum circumference of  4 3/8″, before narrowing in slightly to meet the straight shaft. The shaft itself is is covered by 15 raised nubs, arranged in 3 rings of 5. These nubs protrude by about 3/16″, and are rounded off like small hemispheres. At the bottom of the shaft is a wide 2 1/4″ circular base, which is flared enough to guarantee that the toy is anal safe, and attached to the underside of this is big loop through which a finger can be inserted whilst using the toy. All in all it produces a rather attractive design, and it somewhat reminds me of those big candy dummies  (pacifiers for my American readers) which you can buy a fairgrounds.
The 37 is hand crafted in China from borosilicate glass (Pyrex) and is extremely well made. There are no bubbles or imperfections within the material, nor unsightly scratches on the surface, but there is slight touch of asymmetry to it in places, which confirms its handmade credentials and has its own charm to it. It’s made from two different colours of glass, the main body is formed from an opaque black, while the loop at the base is clear, though if you hold the toy up to a light you’ll notice that the nubs are also transparent. Borosilicate glass is a great material for a sex toy because it’s toughened, so there’s no chance of it accidentally shattering, and it can take a fair amount of abuse. The glass can also be subjected to wide changes in temperature without suffering any damage, which makes it great for temperature play. Whether you want to heat in up in hot water, or cool it down in the freezer, the material will respond and stay at that level. The packaging even suggests it can be warmed in the microwave, though I haven’t attempted this.
The Icicles No. 37 comes in some very tasteful packaging, and apart from a typo on the front referring to it as a “massger”[sic] there’s nothing to complain about. It’s packed into a thick piece of foam to protect it from impact, and then put inside a simple cardboard box. The box has a monochrome colour scheme to match the toy, and features several attractive photos of the 37 so you know what you’re getting. If the photos aren’t enough then the front of the box also swings open like a door, allowing you a peek of what’s inside through a small plastic viewing window. Usefully the box does have some information printed on it, giving advice on how to clean the toy and heat or cool it.
The No. 37 is a lovely toy to use, and thanks to the contours of the tip it slides gently and easily into the body. Even though glass is a firm material there’s absolutely no discomfort to speak of as is passes through the muscle, and the modest width of it should suit even a relative novice. Once you get past the tip you can feel the slight narrowing as it meets the shaft, but it’s not significant enough to produce a pop. As the shaft slowly slips in you’ll begin to feel all the firm nubs along it, and if you’re a fan of texture then you’ll love these. Each little lump and bump adds a new point of interest to stimulate the sphincter and draw your attention. Under ordinary circumstances the amount that you can feel the nubs is at just the right level, but if for any reason you’re feeling even the slightest bit tender then I’d avoid using this toy at that point, as the firmness will feel slightly too intense. With the toy all the way in the flared section prevents it from going any further, but I found that because the last ring of nubs is quite close to the base that you didn’t always feel them. Due to the relatively short length of the insertable portion, the rigid body of the toy still fells very comfortable inside the body, and you needn’t worry about any unwanted poking or prodding going on. The loop at the bottom of the toy it great for manipulating it with, and you can slip a finger through it and use it to move it in and out of your body, or indeed someone else’s. One good trick I found is just to slowly rotate the toy while it’s in the body, as you really feel the impact of the nubs then. I mentioned earlier that the toy is a cross between a dildo and a plug, and it’s much more suited to being used as a dildo. Thrusting back and forth with the 37 is undoubtedly the best way to make use of the texture and enjoy feeling it, rather than just keeping it stationary. Using it as a plug is possible, but does come with a couple of issues. The first is that there’s no real neck area to speak of. When the toy’s inserted the sphincter rests along the nubs on the shaft, and this doesn’t help to hold it inside the body that well, so there’s a significant likelihood of slippage over a prolonged period. The other issue is the loop itself. While it’s definitely handy for thrusting it also protrudes quite a way, so you definitely can’t sit down while wearing it, and it would probably be noticeable through the back of any underwear. In my opinion it’s definitely one of those anal toys that’s better suited to playing around with.
When you’re done playing with the No. 37 you’ll want to wash it, and thankfully that couldn’t be easier. Glass is a non-porous material so you can toss it in the dishwasher, boil it for a couple of minutes, or wipe it down with a 10% bleach solution, and all will leave it completely sterile. You can also just wash it with plain old anti-bacterial soap and hot water, or use a toy wipe.
Overall I’d happily recommend the Icicles No. 37 to anyone looking for a new glass anal toy. It’s well made, looks great, and has a fun texture to play with.
The Icicles No. 37 is available from SimplyPleasure in the UK, and EdenFantasys in the U.S.
Anal probe with nubbed texture made from borosilicate glass.

Sasha Grey Large Glass Butt Plug

After sticking almost exclusively to silicone for so long, I felt it was high time I broadened my material horizons, and that’s where the Sasha Grey glass butt plug came in!
Read the review after the jump!

The Sasha Grey large is part of Doc Johnson’s new range of glass butt plugs. Aesthetically it’s quite a stunning piece to look at, made from an opaque black-pigmented pyrex glass. What’s unusual about the plug is its proportions; the over all length of the plug is 4 3/4″, with 4 3/8″ being insertable. Of this insertable length a significant portion is taken up by the neck, which measures in at 1 3/4″ long. The bulb itself is very short and stubby, with a sharp taper. The distance from the tip to the widest point is a mere 1 3/4″, and when you consider that the widest point has an impressive diameter of 2 3/8″, you realise that this plug is definitely only for the more advanced user.

The construction of the plug is generally good. The surface is smooth and uniform, with no anomalous lumps and bumps present, and no moulding artefacts either. Where it is let down, however, is by the presence of several shallow scratches along the surface. These in no way impede the plug’s performance, but they do detract somewhat from the appearance.
When it comes to using the plug you really need to have had prior experience with a plug of this size. The sharp taper absolutely precludes this from being a suitable training tool for those looking to move up from something smaller. Probably the best way to insert the plug is to first warm up using another plug with a more gentle gradient, like the Super Big End. Once you’ve loosened up and made a path for it, the Sasha Grey will slip in much more readily, without the need to worry about the taper. For the sake of thoroughness I did attempt to insert the Sasha Grey large without any prior preparation, and I can confirm that it is indeed possible, though it does take longer this way and requires more patience. Despite its size the plug is actually  quite comfortable to insert, if done correctly. The smooth glass body helps it to glide inside, along with plenty of lube, and as soon you pass the widest point you feel a definite pop as the plug is sucked inwards. On a couple of occasions I did notice some slight discomfort initially after the plug was inserted, seemingly emanating from the pointed tip. This vanished quite quickly as the plug settled into place, but it’s worth exercising a little caution at this early stage, and not being too enthusiastic with forcing it all the way in. The length of the neck allows for a nice amount of play with the plug; contracting the muscles will pull it in all the way down to the base, while relaxing them shifts the plug downwards and causes a good portion of the neck to protrude. Being that it is a large plug it feels filling, but not as filling as I expected. I have to put this down to the fact that the main body is comparatively short for a plug of its thickness. If you find longer plugs uncomfortably filling, but still like to be stretched, then this plug is really suited to you. If on the other hand you really appreciate a very full feeling, then this plug might disappoint in that area. For this reason I didn’t find that the plug stimulated the prostate as well as I might have hoped for either. The final part of the plug is the circular base, which sits comfortably between the buttocks. I had some doubts about how pleasant it would feel to have a solid circle of glass pushing into the skin, but I can happily say that I had no complaints about the matter. The base also doubles as a very good handle for when the plug needs to be removed.
Compared to other materials glass toys have some rather unique properties, shared only by their cousins the metal toys. To start with, and this almost goes without saying, glass toys are hard. There’s no give, no flexibility, glass is simply unforgiving. Nothing is there to cushion the plug, and it makes your body conform to it, rather than the other way around. This really comes down to a matter of personal preference, some people like their anal toys a little more soft and friendly, while others enjoy the authoritative feeling of something rock hard. If you have enough anal experience to take the size comfortably, then the firmness of the material shouldn’t come as too much of a shock. The second thing to note is that glass is heavy, but what I discovered is that while it feels heavy in the hand, it doesn’t feel heavy in the body. The weight of a metal plug is something you’re always conscious of, as gravity tries to tug it out of the body, but the weight of the glass isn’t quite sufficient enough to replicate this effect. The Sasha Grey may weigh more than a silicone plug of a comparable size, but when wearing it this difference isn’t apparent. Lastly glass is great for temperature play. It lacks that natural chill that metal maintains at room temperature, but if you put it in the fridge or warm water prior to play, then it holds onto that level of cold/warmth when you’re using it.
One thing to note if you’re planning to wear the plug for an extended period, is the difference between the diameter of the bulb and the diameter of the neck. The neck is only 1 1/4″ wide, and this has a couple of consequences. Firstly, on a positive note, once the plug is inside there’s absolutely no risk of it inadvertently slipping out again. With the muscles contracting down around the narrow neck, the plug is held securely in place, and it can be worn whilst walking around without worry. Secondly, the plug can actually prove rather difficult to remove if left in place for too long. After the initial big stretch the muscles come to rest around the significantly narrower neck, and will begin to steadily tighten up again over time. Trying to remove the plug under these circumstances is neither easy nor comfortable. The underside of the bulb is fairly blunt, leaving only an inch between the widest point and the neck, thus requiring rapid muscle expansion. Couple this with the hard unforgiving glass and you could be in for an ouch or two.
When it comes to caring for the Sasha Grey butt plug things couldn’t be simpler. Absolutely any lube can be used safely with it; water-based, oil-based, silicone-based, you name it. Cleaning is also breeze, as glass is a non-porous and durable material it can be fully sterilised by wiping over with a 10% bleach solution, or boiling for a couple of minutes. It’s even dishwasher safe. Even if you choose to only wash it with antibacterial soap and hot water, you can rest assured that it won’t harbour any unpleasant odours.
On the whole I’m pretty satisfied with my purchase of the Sasha Grey, and it makes a lovely addition to my collection. I did have some trouble deciding between the medium or the large for my first glass toy, and I’m very happy that I went large.

You can buy the Sasha Grey from Lovehoney in Large, or Medium if you’d prefer.