The Basics of Vibrators

Buying a vibrator can be a very nervewracking experience. After all, with words like “phthalates, “silicone, “dual motors and costs that easily go over a hundred dollars, you just don’t want to make the wrong choice and pay too much money for something you will not enjoy. Plus, with hundreds of different choices out there, it can seem daunting when you’re looking to purchase the perfect vibrator for you. Hopefully, this small vibrator guide will help educate you about your choices and get you started in the right direction.


Vibrators come in different types. Figuring out which type works best for you will allow you to browse vibrators in that category to find your dream toy. If you haven’t experimented with the different types of sensation, it might be worth the chance to try cheap toys in each category to figure out which stimulation feels best to you.

The clitoral vibrators are usually made from a hard material and intended purely for clitoral stimulation. These types of toys include most traditional vibrators, bullets, strap-on vibrators, and mini-vibes. Usually, the size or the material of these toys makes them a bit uncomfortable for insertion, so these toys are usually intended purely to vibrator on the clitoris for pleasure. Good clitoral vibrators to check out include the FunFactory Spring and Mystic Mini.

G-spot vibrators are sex toys intended to be inserted for use. These toys usually have a slight curve on the end of the shaft to better stimulate the G-spot. G-spot vibrators really vary in diameter “ some are really small in width  while others are much larger. Depending your experience with G-spot pleasure, you may want to pick a toy that has a more extreme curve or a more gentle curve. While most women have a shallow G-spot, other women do require a more extreme curve for g-spot pleasure. Good g=G-spot vibrators to check out include the LELO Gigi and the G-Ki.

Dual Stimulation toys are intended to stimulate the clitoris and being inserted into the vagina at the same time. Sometimes the inserted portion is also curved for G-spot stimulation as well. Other times, the inserted portion will rotate or thrust. The most common dual stimulation toy that women recognize is a rabbit-type vibrator “ a large shaft that rotates that has a small clitoral portion sticking off of the shaft that vibrates. Because of the position of the clitoral portion on the toy, not all rabbits will work for a woman. If you are interested in dual stimulation, don’t be disappointed if the first one doesn’t work well for you. Keep in mind that, because of the complexity and larger size of dual stimulation toys, they usually cost more as well. Good dual stimulation toys to check out include the Rosebud and the LELO Ina.

Discreet Vibrators are toys made with discretion in mind. These types of toys are almost always clitoral toys. Discreet sex toys are toys that look like other objects. For example, there’s a vibrator that looks like a tube of lipstick. A good discreet vibrator is any of the toys from the Rub My Duckie series – they are little vibrating (and waterproof) duckies for bathtime.

Anal vibrators are insertable vibrators that are intended for anal penetration. While there are tons of vibrators that claim to be anal safe, do be sure that the anal vibrator you purchase has a flared base for safety. Without the flared base, it could be taken fully into the anal cavity during play. Some anal vibrators have a slight curve intended for stimulation of the prostate in males. A popular anal vibrator is the B-Bomb.


Vibrators are made from different materials. Each type of material does have its own pros and cons, so it’s really up to you to figure out what types of material work best for your own body. Some materials are very firm and rigid while others have a lot of give to them. Cheaper vibrators are sometimes made from more dangerous materials, so it’s always worth finding out if the toy contains phthalates before purchasing or not.

Phthalates are dangerous chemicals that are put into vibrators because it’s a cheap material. The chemicals tend to be released with heat (which is exactly what a vagina is), so these toys can be dangerous for use long-term. None of the studies seem to have studied the use of phthalates in sex toys, but since phthalates were banned in children’s and baby’s items, is it really something you want to gamble on? If you do think that the chance is worth the price, at least make sure to cover your sex toy with a condom to reduce some of the risk. None of Good Vibrations’ products contain phthalates.

One of the more common materials for vibrators is plastic. Plastic is extremely rigid and can be painful for insertion since it’s so rigid. However, a lot of clitoral vibrators are made from plastic. It’s extremely easy to clean, cheap, and it’s non-porous so it can be sterilized for multiple partners. This material works best for external use instead of insertion.

Another common material for vibrators is jelly. Many insertable toys are made from jelly. However, some types of jelly do include phthalates, so make sure that you understand your risks before purchasing. (If the website/toy packaging doesn’t say “phthalates free, you should assume that it has phthalates.) Jelly is pretty plush, so it does have flexibility, but it is porous, so it can not be shared between partners. Jelly can also be irritating to some women’s skin as well. Jelly is one of the cheapest materials, though, so it’s easy to get a jelly toy for a very cheap price.

Some vibrators are made from silicone. Silicone is a high-quality material that usually is reflected in the price. Silicone is very flexible, and depending upon the company, it usually does have some plush feeling do it. A lot of insertable toys are made form silicone. Silicone does absorb lubricant easily, so it can require a bit of extra lubricant for use. Silicone can be sterilized to be shared between partners.

A couple manufacturers are setting off into glass-material vibrators. Glass requires very little lubricant for use, but, as you can guess, it is very rigid and can be broken more easily than other materials. (Even though it’s easier to break than others, glass toys are actually pretty sturdy too.) Glass does transfer vibrations really nicely and allows the vibrations to vibrate along the body of the toy. Glass is non-porous and can be shared between partners. It does require a bit of extra thought put into storage since the toy can be broken though.

How to Find The Best Toys

You can go to your local sex toy shop to find toys to purchase. However, if you aren’t in one of the sex-positive areas (like California), your local sex shop may be a shady store that only sells no-package dildos or badly packaged vibrators “ like mine. In that case, I highly recommend you use the internet instead of purchasing from those stores. Those stores rarely have knowledgable staff and also rarely have any sort of information about the toys themselves. Going online will give you more information than a local shady sex shop.

When purchasing a vibrator, I recommend checking out the reviews for the toy beforehand. The best way to know if a toy is going to work is from the experiences of other purchasers of the toy. If a bunch of other people have said the toy doesn’t work, the toy isn’t going to work. However, do remember that sex toys largely are a matter of personal opinion “ what works for someone else may not always work for you. For the most part, though, if a toy has a lot of negative reviews, it’s likely it won’t work as well as some other sex toys would.

If the toy is expensive (or you want to be careful with your money), you can search “Toy Name plus “Review on a search engine. Many companies send bloggers the toy in exchange for an honest review of the product. Reading up on multiple posts on blogs will allow you to get a good idea of what the toy is while having an honest review. (Some sex toy stores have been accused of writing only positive reviews on their own toys, so if you see only positive reviews on all of the toys in a store, it’s possible they are using this tactic. Reading blogs allows you make sure that non-affiliated persons have the same opinion.)

If the first toy you try isn’t perfect for you, don’t worry. Everyone has a personal preference, and not all toys will work best for that preference. It’s always possible you got a bad toy as well. I always feel bad for people who try their first toy and hate it “ never to try another toy again. I promise “ there are better toys out there. If your first experience isn’t the best, I recommend you try another toy by a different manufacturer. There are some really nice sex toys out there. Here’s to hoping that you find the perfect toy for your body because it really is great when you do!


Good Vibrations

Good Vibrations is the premiere sex-positive, women-principled adult toy retailer in the US. An iconic brand and one of the world's first sex toy shops to focus specifically on women's pleasure and sexual education, Good Vibrations was founded by Joani Blank in 1977 to provide women with a safe, welcoming and non-judgmental place to shop for erotic toys. Good Vibrations has always included all people across the gender spectrum, and is a place where customers can come for education, high quality products, and information promoting sexual health, pleasure and empowerment. Customers can shop Good Vibrations' expertly curated product selection across any of its nine retail locations or on the website, where they can also find a wealth of information pertaining to sexual pleasure, exploration and education.

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