The Sex Toy Razzies - My Picks for the Worst Toys at ANME
We've just returned from sex toy-pa-looza (also known as ANME) in Los Angeles. It was an amazing three days packed full of great toys, meetings with awesome toy-makers, and making new friends with suppliers and retailers who share our vision for body-safe, quality toys with sex-positive messaging.
We also saw some of the worst the sex toy industry has to offer. Some of them were so bad, they deserve an aware. I've devised three categories for the terrible things we saw. And the winners are:
For worst idea and design - Whatever the hell this thing was called - by Hot Products
This is meant to.....well, let's be honest, I'm not sure what it's meant to do. You are supposed to put it in your mouth and penetrate a partner, I guess?
So there are a number of problems with this. First of all, that is a teeny teeny tiny dil. What are you going to do with that? It might be the right size for anal play but then that means that your face is right up in that person's butt. That's fine if you want to be all up in their stuff like that, but usually the reason you're doing that is because you want to tongue them. You can't use your tongue when you're biting down on this.
This thing vibrates. You can only turn it on and change the speeds by reaching into that little hole there. That's not going to be a lot of fun during play.
The vibrator is very strong and super super buzzy. It would rattle your teeth right out of your gums. I can't imagine having this in your mouth feeling pleasant at all.
I could see something like this being useful for someone who has no or limited mobility and uses their mouth to hold adapted devices. But if you were to do something like that, you'd want something much better designed than this. It would likely need to be bigger - with a light material that would be easy to lift and hold with the mouth. And it would probably not vibrate - or have a better quality vibrator located on another part of the toy.
This is good only for having a laugh and the price makes it a pretty expensive laugh.
For Most Dangerous Product - The Vibrating Waterproof Anal Probe by California Exotics
We'll ignore the fact that this toy is made out of some kind of jelly rubber/TPR blend that is most certainly not body-safe, and skip right to the design. You should never ever ever make an anal toy that has handle that is slimmer than the part that goes in the butt. You should particularly not do that if the neck part of the toy is short and does not offer the spincters any length to grab onto. It would take only the smallest amount of enthusiastic in and out movement for the entire thing to go up the butt. The handle is rounded at the end and it's slim and small. It would be very hard to grasp to pull out. This is a trip to the emergency room waiting to happen.
For the Most Offensive Packaging and Marketing - Hey 19! Blue Jean Genie by Icon Products
There's a lot of seriously harmful messaging in sex toy packaging and marketing so its really hard to pick out a winner in this category. There was a lot of stiff competition from the wildly racist toys we saw. But we decided to go with this because it is both mind-bogglingly misogynistic AND abusive. They do actually call the line hey 19! so they are clearly not suggesting that this object represents somebody who's underage - right?
There are a lot of things that upset me about this but the biggest one is that the person who is depicted here is obviously meant to be an object of desire. You are supposed to want this toy because you like the idea of the person in that picture. You are supposed to find her attractive and fantasize about her as you fuck this butt that is supposed to represent her. But the description on the package calls her a 'co-ed slut'. You find her attractive, you want to have sex with her, but you demean her with misogynistic, sex negative, insults? This is obviously meant to target people who fantasize about talking to or treating women this way.
Now I don't generally get all judgy about people's fantasies. This kind of thing pops up in fantasies for a lot of people and there's a lot of reasons for that. If this stuff pops up for you while you masturbate or you find a partner who gets off on this and willingly and enthusiastically agrees to including that in your play, please fill your boots. What upsets me is actually putting this on a product and suggesting to people that viewing a young woman this way is acceptable. Does the woman in this picture even know that they put her on this package in particular with the word 'slut' all over it?
There's just so many levels of wrong here I can't even get to them all.
Also, please don't use toys like this unless it's possible to clean them thoroughly. There are many sleeve-type toys that can be opened up and cleaned but many of the full butt types like this cannot. If you can't clean it, it's going to get really gross and need to be thrown at after only two or three uses. These toys are expensive too, so that is a huge waste.
Congrats to our winners. You've outdone yourself with bad design, bad materials, and awful marketing. We sincerely hope you strive to do better next year.
I'm working on a list of winners for best design and marketing, but we will be bringing most of those toys into the shop soon so I first have to decide if I want to spoil the surprise.