What I Learned In the Sex Toy Industry – 10 Surprising Things


It's been four years (as of this article) that I've worked in the sex toy industry. Here are some fun, weird, or surprising things I've found (and a couple of gross ones).





This isn’t really a surprise. We’ve all seen the stuff sold in joke stores or sex shops. But what you might not know is just HOW MUCH crap is out there and sold under the “novelty” loophole. It runs all the way from irresponsible design to dangerous materials or additives.


  • Jelly is the devil
  • Anal toys need a safe base
  • Vibrators need extra love
  • You often get what you pay for
  • The packaging often tells you plenty







I’ve seen both sides of the coin. There are inexpensive toys that are surprisingly good. And there are high-end toys that aren’t worth the money at all. But, even with the markups, it’s very often a case of (as mentioned above) “getting what you pay for”.


So, if you’ve spent $5.99 on a vibrator, don’t expect miracles.





Okay, it might not bother most people, but I HATE when kegel balls are sold with the promise of “will give you amazing orgasms” and improve your sex life – all because of a weighted ball that rolls around in the casing.


This is highly inaccurate (at least in the way the information is delivered). Remember, the balls themselves DON’T give you orgasms. They are mean to help you isolate and exercise your pelvic muscles. This, in turn, improves their strength and therefore MIGHT give you stronger orgasms (because it’s the clenching that gives that feeling).


But it’s not always about the climax.

They are used for health reasons – post-pregnancy care, bladder control issues, loss of elasticity with age, etc.




You must wash your toys before AND after each use. I’m shocked just how many people don’t bother.

Even if you leave them in a baggie, you should be washing them with mild soap and warm water regularly. Materials can collect dust, spots can be missed, temperature can affect things, the bag might need cleaning, and the drawer might be dirty.




Throwing your little booklets in the garbage can end up being very expensive in the long run. There are key details that the manufacturer puts in there for a reason – whether for the life span of the toy or for safety.


A good example is rechargeable toys.


You NEVER use the toy while it’s plugged in. And always recharge if fully every 6 months (if you’re not using it during that time). These two things alone will save your toy.




The poor people in the returns department have to wear gloves because far too many toys are returned after use … and uncleaned. Including anal toys.


PLEASE, wash them before you send them back.




I did an article on trans toys recently and found there really weren’t enough out there. I’ve seen a few really cool models, but these products are like any other sex toy – every body is different, so you need a variety.


One company might make an FtM toy one way, but a different company might alter it. It’s the same idea with the g-spot and prostate massagers. No one hole is the same.




There are far too many stereotypes about the seedy store with people jerking off to the DVD covers in the back room. Many stores now are more open, welcoming, and even boutique-like. Couple that with online sales and you have a lot of different people buying sex toys.


Even in the countries or states that ban them, there are still ways to get them. Your doctor, pastor, lawyer, cleaning lady, dog walker, and burger flipper probably have one.




You might think working in a sex toy company would be lots of action and craziness. But, in fact, it’s just as quiet as any office. Programmers, marketing, customer service reps … all of them are plugging away on their computers. Our office would usually be dead quiet with the occasional giggle or muffled sound of a meeting in a far room.


Aside from making sure all interviewees understand what kind of company they are working for, everyone becomes very chill about all the toys and pics of naked people.




Yep. Some nameless manufacturer or lube creator could be distributing their wares to companies, which, in turn, slap their label on the box and sell it. Two good examples are the “rose” g-spot vibrator (I see these everywhere) and one particular white brand sex toy cleaner.


If you want to see which brands have the exact same recipe, check out this article.




Someone can just copy a toy, make a few tweaks and resell them. But if you want a good toy – something targeted, properly made, or innovative, there are lots of steps that have to be taken.


  • Patent research
  • Research and prototype design
  • Initial testing
  • Redesign
  • More testing
  • Sometimes the feedback and redesign stages can loop for a long while
  • Launch preparation
  • Plus a dozen or so small steps in between these big ones.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 


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Have a sexy day!




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Comments (1)

  1. Chris says:

    How does one get into this industry. I know most designs are already made, but Ive always wondered how one may enter this field. Ie: degrees, skills, etc...

    1. Robyn to Chris says:

      Mine was a weird way in (through an acquaintance), but that just got me the interview (and even being aware someone was hiring). The rest were skills I developed on my own (writing, proofing, social media). Some came from design school. You can always start as a tester etc. It's a simple way in.

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