We discuss why we feel sex toys are not wrong for Christians in our What’s Okay, What’s Not article. In this article, we will look at various sex toys to see how they differ, what they do, and what you can do with them. Our Shopping Links page has links to several companies that sell these products online without nudity or pornographic images. Vibrators and other items can be found in many drug stores – look for them by the condoms.
Sex toys is a poor description of what we mean here, but “items that enhance sex” is harder to say, and requires some explanation.
Anything that is not a part of your bodies, which you use to make sex better, is an item that enhances sex. The Bible mentions herbs and special sheets used to make sex more enjoyable (Proverbs 7), and these and other items can be used to make sex more enjoyable for today’s Christian couple.
Some of these items are not directly involved in sex. Satin sheets, scented candles, and mirrors can all enhance sex without being actively involved in the sex act. Some lubricants, such flavored ones and those that have a warming or cooling effect are designed for sexual enhancement.
There are also scented and flavored massage oils which can be applied to the body and then removed with the tongue. Flavored body paint is more provocative, and often better tasting. Also available for application and oral removal are dusting powders in flavors like honey, chocolate and vanilla. You can also get non-edible paints, including a paint on latex that can be used to produce some interesting and arousing “garments.” Lingerie and other clothing also fit in this category of sex enhancing items.
Vibrators: This is the most common “sex toy,” with a range of options beyond belief. You can go to drug stores and get a plug in model that does not look sexual and yet can do very nice things when applied to the genitals. The knob attachment is good for use on the clitoris, while the cup attachment works well on the glans of the penis. More specifically sexual vibrators are battery operated egg and bullet vibrators. These small vibrators produce strong stimulation, and run a long time on a set of batteries. A soft material over the egg or bullet is a nice addition.
Many vibrators come with a speed control – either a slide or several settings. This changes the strength of the vibration. Another factor that is important is the frequency of the vibrations. A very fast “buzzing” is less pleasurable than a slower “throbbing” for most women. Each vibrator will have its own frequency, and that changes how it feels.
In addition to being used on the vulva, these vibrators can be placed between the man and woman during intercourse, producing extra sensation for both of them. There are also rings made to fit around the penis that hold the vibrator in place. Our suggestion for a “first sex toy” is a vibrating egg or bullet with a soft cover – it is inexpensive, versatile, and not overly embarrassing.
According to many, the ultimate vibrator is the Hitachi Magic Wand Massager. The plug in vibrator produces strong vibrations of a frequency that seems to be ideal for sexual stimulation. The Hitachi can be used during intercourse, but not easily; it is more useful for giving a woman – or a man – an orgasm manually. Women who sometimes struggle to climax may find this item a real blessing.
Rings: There is a wide variety of rings designed to be worn at the base of the erect penis. In some men, rings can slightly add to the size and firmness of an erection. Rings can also help a man maintain an erection if he sometimes has difficulty with this, but this only helps if he is able to get a full erection first. Many rings have a knob or other extensions intended to stimulate the woman’s clitoris and/or labia during intercourse, and some rings have built in vibrators.
WARNING: Never use a solid ring – it can cut off blood flow to the penis and be very dangerous. Jelly rings are good because they are stretchable and can be removed when needed. It is not a good idea to leave a ring in place for more than half an hour.
Dildo: A penis-shaped plastic or silicon item intended for use in the vagina. Some vibrate, which may or may not do anything for her when inserted. The vibrations can be very useful for clitoral stimulation prior to insertion. Dildos that look realistic are a concern for some, and those that are molded copies of porn stars seem unacceptable to us. More “generic” dildos have a valid place in some couples “toy box,” to be used by the husband on the woman, or for the woman to use on herself as her husband watches. A dildo may be especially useful when used in addition to oral or manual stimulation of the vulva. Solid, hard dildos do not bend and give like a real penis; something soft and flexible will usually be enjoyed more. Life size dildos are not to the liking of some woman, and we suggest something smaller as a first dildo.
Sleeves: Penis sleeves are stretchy tubes worn over the shaft of the penis during intercourse. The sleeve has bumps or ridges that stimulate the woman. Some women like them, some do not. Some sleeves are intended to add size to the circumference of the penis, others are designed to help keep the penis more rigid. Sizing may be difficult for a man who is wider or narrower than the norm.
Blindfold: For some individuals, not being able to see what their partner is doing can add significantly their arousal and enjoyment. Homemade blindfolds tend to be imperfect or uncomfortable, so if you or your spouse enjoys this a specially designed blindfold might be a great purchase.
We don’t think there are many “toys,” other than those molded from real people, that are inherently sinful. However, there are things that many Christians would be uncomfortable with, if not call wrong. We feel that why the couple wants an item, how they use it, and how important it is to them are all factors in deciding if it is a toy or an obsession/fetish. With that in mind, here are some of the other items available.
Penis Stimulators: These devices, used to simulate a man to orgasm, range from a thin soft sleeve placed over the penis before manual sex to firm tubes filled with various nubs and ticklers that are moved up and down the penis. If a couple’s sex life includes her manually stimulating him to climax, a device of this nature may make it easier for her and more enjoyable for him. Because these items are promoted almost exclusively as a solo masturbation device, some couples are hesitant. A “her use only” agreement might help.
Vulva Suction Device or Pump: These items, some of which also vibrate, can be used to arouse a woman and/or to produce orgasm. It may offer some help for women who have a difficult time getting aroused or getting aroused enough to orgasm.
WARNING: There are also devices on the market which are used to produce high suction on the clitoris, causing it to enlarge significantly, with the goal of permanently enlarging the clitoris. We are not aware of good studies on the long term effects of such body changes and recommend against it for this reason. The cup devices that produce more gentle suction and no long term changes to the body have been studied and found to be safe.
Restraints: Bondage can range from playful fun to painful fetish. Some feel freer to express themselves when restrained, while others enjoy being “forced” to relax and just receive. There is a wide variety of restraints available, but to get anything more than the most basic you will have to go to places most of us do not even want to know exist.
Anal toys: These are increasingly common, and can be used on the wife or the husband. Fears that “this makes me homosexual” deny the reality that the anus can cause sexual stimulation in all men and women. However, there are health concerns about any anal play (more here).
Things that cause pain: A small tassel whip used lightly is one thing, but there are devices designed to cause real, significant pain. The couple’s intentions are what determine if they are playing or entering into S&M (more here).
Electrosex: There are devices designed to apply low, pulsating electric currents to the genitals in order to stimulate. These devices are not intended to cause pain (although some pain devices do use electric shock) but rather to cause arousal and orgasm. Although your spouse can run the control box, electrosex is really a masturbation method and does not give a couple any real interaction or sexual contact – even when used together. The speed of arousal and intensity of orgasm possible with this technique could leave a man or woman unwilling, if not unable, to enjoy sex without the gadgets. We have not talked to anyone who has experienced electrosex first hand, but we are concerned that it could be harmful to a couple’s sex life.
Sexual enhancements like those discussed here are not forbidden by the Bible, and we feel they can be a part of a healthy, loving married sex life. However, these items can also be a source of distraction, arguments, and hard feelings. Many Christians still struggle with rules and limits taught to them in the past and sexual items may cause them to feel unsure or uncomfortable. It is one thing to agree intellectually that it is not wrong to use something; it is another thing to be able to use and enjoy the item. If your spouse is unsure or resistant – do not push. Let him or her know what you believe, and why, and what you would like to try. Then let the subject drop and give them time to think and pray about it. You can have a very fulfilling and happy sex life without ever using any kind of “sex toy” – don’t let what can be an enhancement for some become a source of conflict or destruction in your marriage.
sex toys in drawer © Alexander Mak / Adobe Stock