Friday, 31 August 2012

Follow up Friday #1

Follow up Friday is a meme designed to allow people to link their follow-up discoveries to their past reviews. Whether you’ve come up with a creative new use for your sex toy, stumbled across some new information regarding the product, or even if the manufacturers have made some minor adjustments, this allows you to let the world know.

Written an important revision but can’t bear the thought of scrunching up the previous manuscript? Simple bullet points will suffice, outlining the critical new details, and linking back to your original written masterpiece is a must – as long as it’s related to the new addition.

Copy the ‘Follow up Friday’ link and post this in your blog. You can find it here:

Content must be a follow-up of one of your previous reviews, and not an exact copy of previous material. 

Tweet and share your blog post. Make sure you check out the other entrants each week.

Thank you @buzzvibe for the amazing meme.

LELO Insignia Alia

The LELO Insignia Alia is a vibrator intended for all over body massage, with an easy to grip design. This ovoid ring is perfect for gliding over the body and vulva. The broad shape and sturdy construction of the toy allows you to easily apply the desired pressure, whilst your hand can guide the luxurious silicone surface without the worry of cramping or becoming fatigued from vibrations.  Not only is the Alia a fairly powerful vibrator, but it is also rechargeable and waterproof. Unlike some waterproof toys on the market, its shape makes it perfect for use in wet and slippery environments too. 

The Alia is found packaged within multiple boxes; an outer box made from thin cardboard has product images and information stylishly arranged on it, and once this is discarded you are left with a sturdy black box resembling a jewellery gift case. The plain black box has LELO softly engraved into its lid. Other than this it offers no indication that, within its vault, it contains a luxury intimate object with sensual, sexual possibilities. Inside the box, the Alia rests snugly in a decadent velvet lined insert, with a golden brooch positioned beside it. The brooch is of the Insignia logo, which looks like an extended infinity symbol. The box has a secretive subterranean section filled with an instruction manual, a 1-year warranty, 10-year guarantee, a sachet of lubricant, charger, and a satin travel pouch. The drawstring satin pouch is very discreet, and the perfect size for placing into a handbag or drawer; you could use the brooch to pin the top closed for extra security.

The toy will need charging for two hours prior to its first use. To do this, use the AC adaptor provided. At the base of the Alia you will find a dip in the silicone, push the AC jack pin through this dip, thus punching a hole into the silicone. Don’t worry, the toy is still waterproof as the silicone acts as a vacuum seal, but doing this is necessary to gain access to the DC charging port. While the Alia is charging, a white LED light will flash around the control interface; once fully charged the LED light will glow steadily.

The toy’s shape is a hollowed ellipse; the gap is perfect for threading one or two fingers through. The rigid body is coated in silky smooth silicone, which feels divine to stroke, and the inner ring is set with a glossy golden metallicised plastic. There is a slight gap between the silicone and plastic inlay; dirt can reside here. The plastic inlay is in two parts, leaving another crevice running round the inner edge of the ring. The Alia’s construction is aesthetically appealing, making it a great introductory product for those new to sex toys. The shape also makes it ideal for adventurous couples and playful entrepreneurs.

To one side of the silicone ring you will find a textured button interface consisting of three buttons, lined up to form the Insignia logo. One button acts as the on button, ‘+’, as well as being responsible for increasing the vibration’s intensity. A ‘-’ button reduces the vibrations, and if held down switches the toy off. The last button, ‘()’, allows you to switch between the 6 vibration modes, comprising of continuous, escalation, and pulsation settings. You are able to increase and decrease the strength of vibration in each mode via the ‘+’ and ‘-’ buttons. When the product is active a bright LED will glow around its interface as you circle through its settings. The Alia’s travel lock can be activated and deactivated by holding both the ‘+’ and ‘-’ buttons simultaneously for a few seconds. Engraved into the opposite side from the controls you will find the brand name, ‘LELO’.  The toy’s vibrations are impressively strong, and surprisingly quiet. The vibrations given off are a mid-pitch growl, starting as more of a rumble, and, as you increase the intensity, giving off a steadily more constant, strong, buzz.

When using the Alia for clitoral stimulation, I found I needed a lick of water-based lubrication to make its tip glide comfortably between my labia. The toy’s conical tip wasn’t tapered enough to offer pinpoint clitoral stimulation, but with the vibration resonating through the toy and transmitting powerfully into my body, I was still able to achieve climax rapidly. The toy’s design allowed me to manipulate its motions and control the pressure at my whim, meaning I could glide the toy effortlessly or hold its power on one area. I also liked how I could grip the toy comfortably without needing to rest my fingers over the buttons; this meant that I was less likely to accidentally change the vibration settings.

The Alia worked well stimulating other erogenous zones, but its broad tip wasn’t the best when I desired more intimate play focused on my nipples. For general massage, the grip meant that I could comfortably use the product on those hard to reach areas, and the vibrations helped ease away any aches I may’ve been experiencing, but the Alia’s lightness meant that it wasn’t the best for massaging tight muscular knots, which often require heavier pressure.

The toy is the perfect bath and shower companion. Although silicone normally causes extra drag when submerged under water, the Alia’s extra smooth surface and rounded tip worked exceptionally well during aquatic play, even without the addition of extra lubrication.

When cleaning Alia, make sure you pay extra attention to the gaps between the inlay and silicone. Dirt can also occasionally reside within the logo’s grooves and interface’s indentations. As the Alia is waterproof, you can easily clean it in warm water with your standard antibacterial soap. Grime simply washes away from the smooth silicone and plastic.

I only have one problem with the Alia. It doesn’t seem to have a very long battery life, meaning that I’m having to charge it more frequently than I would like. When the Alia runs out of battery power, the motor just stops dead, without any prior warning.

Overall, I really like the Alia’s shape. I wasn’t expecting overly much from this product, as normally I prefer pinpoint clitoral stimulation, but the vibrations produced by the Alia’s motor echo quality. The ovoid ring design makes this exceptionally easy to control, and I’d recommend this toy to anyone who normally has trouble holding small massage vibrators (such as dainty bullets)for extended periods. The Alia is also the perfect toy to use in the bath and shower. I’m certain I’ll be using the Alia regularly; it’s just a shame it doesn’t have a longer battery life.

Thank you to Desire & Pleasure for sending me this item for my review.  You can find out more about the LELO Alia here.

Tuesday, 28 August 2012

Toy with me Tuesday: Tea Fetish

Everyone has their favorite blend of tea, whether it's a strong Assam tea, or a zesty Earl Grey. Just like tea, everyone has a favorite brand of condoms, depending on material, size, taste, and even the sensations they produce.

After frolicking around with a lover, we tend to relax with a cup of tea after coitus. After a refreshing cuppa, we feel vitalised and ready for more sex. This has lead me to keep condom within my kitchen cupboards, and Twinings boxes of individually wrapped tea, is a perfect place to tuck a Skyns condom between each envelope.

Why not learn how to take part in Toy with me Tuesday here, also make sure you check out the other entries this week.

Toy with me Tuesday

Sh! Lush! Lube

The Lush! Lubricant by Sh! is a hybrid lubricant. Its label states that it is a water-based lubricant, but the ingredients list clearly says it contains dimethicone, which is a type of silicone oil. Sh! have informed me that there is only 2% silicone in the lubricant’s formula, which they feel makes it a water-based lubricant, which should be safe with most toys. However, due to the silicone content, I would avoid using this with silicone toys. 

The lubricant arrives in either a small 25 ml travel-size twist-cap bottle, or a larger 250 ml pump action bottle. The lubricant’s bottles are clear, meaning you can easily espy the lubricant within, and have plenty of warning when you’re about to run out. The bottles have a purple and pink label with the product’s name on it, a small amount of information, and an ingredients list. The label claims that the lubricant is a non-sticky water-based fluid which is safe to use with condoms. The ingredients are listed as follows:

Ingredients: agua, monopropyleneglycolusp by droxyethyl cellulose, glyceryl stearate se, dimenthicone, glycerine bi-polysorbate 20, sodium methylparaben, sodium ethylparaben, sodium propylparaben, natural flavour.

After researching the ingredients I became aware that the product contains parabens, which can be harmful to humans, due to their oestrogenic influences. The lubricant contains glycerine, which can encourage yeast infections such as thrush. Prior to using the lubricant I didn’t check the ingredient list, which is unusual for me, so I ended-up slathering the lube onto my nether regions, not thinking much about the results. I had performed a quick patch test on my arm beforehand and didn’t react to the lubricant, but I should’ve checked the ingredients, as normally I avoid lubricants containing glycerine, and have recently started to avoid lubes with parabens in them too. The product contains glyceryl stearate se, which can be made with either animal or vegetable by-products. Sh! have informed me that the one they use is made from vegetable matter, making this product potentially vegetarian friendly, and even possibly vegan friendly, as it doesn’t contain propylene glycol which can be harmful to animals.

The lubricant is of a pearly white colour and slightly lumpy texture – very similar to semen. The fluids density is moderately thick, and has a certain stringiness to it. It is easily washed off and doesn’t leave a tacky feeling afterwards. I found I only needed a small amount of the lubricant when used vaginally. The lubricant didn’t mix overly well with my natural moistures sadly, and produced a mild burning sensation. Sadly the next day I experienced an outbreak of thrush. As I was uncertain about the cause of my yeast infection, I decided to give the lubricant another go once my body had recovered. After this second trial, my body reacted again, and I suffered yet another bout of vaginal thrush.

Personally I’m not a fan of the Sh! Lush lube. I feel that even if my body hadn’t reacted the way it did, I would’ve found its viscosity and miscibility unsatisfactory when mixing into my natural moistures. It’s up to you whether or not you wish to risk giving this lubricant a go, but if you are prone to yeast infections, or are concerned about parabens, then it’s best to avoid this one. Luckily you are able to purchase a small travel-size bottle of the lubricant, which is perfect for you to perform your own tests with, allowing you to work out if this lube is suitable for you.

I received this lubricant free of charge from Sh! Women’s Erotic Emporium for my review. You can purchase the product here.

Monday, 27 August 2012

Toy with me Tuesday #11

August is drawing to an end and autumn approaches. As summer fades, natural lighting becomes less reliable. Maybe it's time to seek new horizons and venture into the world of sex toy nightlife photography, using the starlight twinkle of your camera's flash as guidance.

Do you use Pinterest? Then why not follow the Toy with me
Tuesday boards, ranging from images of inspiration, to an easy to access
gallery of participants photos. Check it out HERE.

I’ve always liked to take creative pictures of sex toys, but sometimes there isn’t a place to share them. There are only so many pictures one can use within each individual review. So I’ve decided to come up with Toy with me Tuesday where we can share more awesome sex toy pictures. Also, the great thing about Toy with me Tuesday is that it’s not just open to reviewers, anyone is free to take part as long as they follow the guidelines.

Toy with me Tuesday is about getting creative with your artistic side and taking pictures of your sex toy collection. It’s a bit of weekly fun, but make sure you read up on the guidelines before entering. Once you have posted your Toy with me Tuesday blog entry, link to it below using the link tool. Do not link to your home page or a review, it has to specifically link to your Toy with me Tuesday post. If you have any problems feel free to contact me via email: 

If you are on twitter it’ll be great if you tweet your entry and use hashtag #ToyWithMeTuesday 

Please make sure to check out other people’s posts and comment – you never know, you might find some inspiration for your next entry. 

Toy with me Tuesday

Saturday, 25 August 2012

Body & Soul Remote 1 Vibrating Egg

The Body & Soul Remote 1 is a radio controlled vibrating love egg with an LCD display remote, reminiscent of an iPod, manufactured by California Exotics. Both the remote and vibrating egg are battery powered. The Body & Soul range of sex toys are marketed as one of those simple luxuries for everyday life, which are meant to encourage you to embrace life.

The Remote 1 arrives in a white cardboard box with various bits of text printed onto it in different fonts; you will also find a few product images. Although there’s quite a lot of written information to take in, it’s probably some of the easiest to absorb I’ve seen on Cal Exotics’ packaging. Rather than their usual approach of fanciful fonts dotted seemingly at random around a picture of the product, the product information is supplied in boxed, bulleted lists, in a selection of languages. The list states that the egg is waterproof; it’s important to note that, by omission, the remote isn’t. The remote and egg are both battery powered. The egg uses two N batteries, and the remote requires one 12V battery – these are provided with the product, but it is advisable to remove the batteries whilst not in use to reduce power drainage. The packaging claims that the product is made from skin safe materials, consisting of ABS plastic with metallic plating and a PU coating. It is recommended that you only use water based lubrication with this toy. 

The product offers 10 modes of vibration, consisting of 3 continuous vibration modes of moderate strength, and 7 modes of escalation and pulsation. The vibrations are controlled via a radio remote which is operated by a push button control, and features a sliding switch travel lock. The remote is lightweight but sturdy; it is 3.5 inches long and 1.5 inches wide. The remote’s case is slightly curved to make it easier to grip. On the back of the remote your will find the brand name printed, as well as a slide-off battery cover which clips firmly into place. Before turning the remote on you will need to slide the travel lock switch into the ‘On’ position, which seems rather counter-intuitive. This lock is located on one side of the device. Below the screen there is a heart shaped keypad with ‘-’, ‘+’, and a power symbol engraved into it. When the remote is on, the LED screen will show which setting you are on, from 0-10. Underneath the mode’s number, various hearts will show up in different patterns depending on the mode. So far I haven’t determined why the hearts appear on the screen, as they don’t seem to have any relevance to the mode’s vibrations. Perhaps it is merely for some visual entertainment.

The egg is made from a PU coated ABS shell, with a plastic coated wire loop. The egg is in the traditional bird’s egg shape, offering a slight tapering towards its tip. The retraction cord is a total of 5 inches in length, and is bendable. The plastic coating on the wire can be damaged through over-bending, and this could lead to exposure of the metal wire, which acts as the radio signal receiver. The egg is a maximum of 2.5 inches in circumference and 4.25 inches of length. The egg can be separated into two parts, allowing access to the battery compartment. To insert the batteries simply untwist the egg and slot the batteries into the two cylinders of the chamber. You will notice a closed off cylinder to one side of the egg; this contains the vibrator’s motor. When twisting the egg back together try and remember the whereabouts of the motor, as the vibrations will be felt strongest this side of the egg.  Also, make sure the plastic washer between the two sections of the egg sits smoothly. With both batteries inserted, the egg weighs 50 g.
When using the egg, I found I needed a small amount of additional lubrication and foreplay prior to insertion. The egg itself can be used as a mild clitoral stimulator to help prepare your body. Whilst inserting the egg I experienced hardly any discomfort as the PU coating, once lubricated, produced very little drag. The egg sat a few inches inside my vagina and within close proximity to my G-spot. However, due to its shape the egg wasn’t able to rest smoothly against my G-spot. The cord, for the most part, resided comfortably outside my body. Occasionally the length of the cord became a slight annoyance.

 I moved the travel lock into the ‘On’ position, and then pressed the power button. The remote’s screen flashed ‘0’ so I clicked the ‘+’ button. The egg vibrated softly inside me. I then clicked the button until I reached the 3rd and most powerful continuous vibration mode. I was able to feel the vibrations travel well throughout my vagina, offering pleasurable stimulation.  I flicked the travel lock into its ‘Off’ position, which meant the egg could keep vibrating away even if the buttons on the controller were accidentally pressed. After a while, I tired of the continuous vibration modes and flicked the travel lock into its ‘On’ position. The remote had forgotten the last setting it was on before using the travel lock, although the egg kept vibrating away, so I had to use the off button and then start from scratch. This irritated me slightly, as you would’ve hoped the egg’s remote would contain some form of memory chip. I found the egg was the wrong shape and slightly lacking in power, so it wasn’t able to cause me to experience a G-spot orgasm, but the vibrations were pleasurable enough to work as excellent foreplay. When removing the egg it produced a slight popping sensation which caused mild discomfort.

When using the remote, I found it only worked when at a similar height to the toy’s retraction cord. The toy’s radio range is better than most, and is even able to work through several walls, and up to at least 6 metres.

Cleaning the egg is easy as it’s waterproof; simply wash it in water with antibacterial soap. After the toy is dry make sure you remove the batteries from its internal chamber. In the unlikely event the remote becomes dirty, simply wipe it down with a slightly damp cloth, as it isn’t waterproof.

Overall, the Body & Soul Remote 1 vibrating egg is a fairly average egg; it has decently powerful vibrations and an unusually impressive remote wireless range. I like the fact that the remote has an LCD screen, as a lot of eggs have no indication as to which vibration mode you are currently using. Also, I like how the remote has a travel lock, as I feel this is an essential feature when using a product out and about, as you can casually slip it into a bag or pocket without fear of accidentally activating the buttons. However, I dislike how the travel lock causes the remote to forget the current mode it’s on, even though the egg continues to buzz away at its last setting.
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