Regular readers of my sex blog or followers of my Twitter no doubt know I’m what some people could call a Sex Toy Snob. Sure, I get picky about limited colour choices and the gendering of fuck objects and the weakness of certain shitty vibrators, but there’s one area where I just don’t think the label Sex Toy Snob applies, because it’s just what everyone should be worried about.
The safety of your sex toys.
See, many of them just aren’t safe. You’ll have heard me talk before about my own bad experiences with dodgy jelly toys, how they went icky and gave me chemical burns, and you may have even read my 10 Reasons To Avoid Jelly Sex Toys. It’s easy then, isn’t it? Just avoid jelly! Sadly, that’s not the case. Horrible chemicals like phthalates aren’t just limited to jelly, they’re found in all sorts of porous sex toy materials, not to mention the fact that porous materials are impossible to truly clean. Well, surely just avoid those, then?
But it isn’t that easy. Unfortunately, sex toys aren’t regulated and there is no way you can know what on Earth a material with a fancy name like Crystalessence or Sil-a-gel is (unless you do some snooping) or even that a toy that says it’s phthalates-free or made of silicone is either of those things.
Dildology.org is a not-for-profit organisation and awesomeness-machine run by Crista Anne, Dangerous Lilly and Val Orenda with the purpose of raising the money to scientifically test sex toys in a proper laboratory to discover once and for all what’s really in them and if they’re actually safe for us. Their mission statement reads:
The sex toy industry is on the rise, yet it remains largely unregulated. Dildology.org intends to provide material verification services and maintain a public database of the results, adding transparency and oversight to the industry while educating the public about the science behind pleasure products. We stand on our own, unaffiliated and uninfluenced, and we are dedicated to protecting the health and well-being of the dildo-loving population at large through education (and maybe a little entertainment).
As an unbiased, unaffiliated, non-profit organisation, Dildology.org can’t take on any advertising in order to raise money, so they are asking for your kind donations. The majority of donations will go towards product testing and the rest will be used for fundraising incentives, equipment for experiments and the development of educational resources. And testing itself is hardly cheap at around $200-450 (£130-300) per toy tested.
When Lilly started the Dildology.org fundraising blog carnival, I knew I had to help out, hence this post. I’m already sold on how awesome Dildology.org is and, more crucially, how important and necessary it is for the safety of all sex toy users. I’m going to go donate, and get my friends to too, right after I post this, so I don’t need convincing. But maybe you do, so here’s some…
FOR REVIEWERS: The original sex toy tested by the Dildologists, the Jimmyjane Hello Touch, actually failed the common reviewer method of testing whether a toy is silicone or not: the flame test. But the lab results prove that the Hello Touch is indeed silicone. I don’t know about you, but I’m not keen on a world in which even us reviewers, the people who are supposed to know about sex toys, can’t actually test for sure if something is silicone or not. The flame test has failed us, we need something new. We need the Dildologists.
FOR CONSUMERS: We use sex toys for a reason: to improve our sex lives and to have a lot of, hopefully orgasmic, pleasure. We can’t improve our sexual happiness with dodgy materials, dangerous chemicals and absolutely no say over what goes into our own bodies. You really can’t tell me you don’t care what goes in there. At the very least we need to become informed consumers armed with the right to choose. And right now we just can’t have that. We need the Dildologists.
FOR EVERYONE: Dildology.org are looking to raise $1,500 throughout this blog carnival, and they’re willing to offer juicy incentives to donors. US and Canadian donations of $15+ will receive a 15% off code for SheVibe, UK and European donations of $15+ (£10+) will receive a code for 10% off Lovehoney brand products and Australian donations of $15+ will receive a code for 10% off storewide at MissX. Plus, at $50 (plus $15 for international shipping), you get an awesome t-shirt.
FROM ME: If you donate $30 (£20) or more to Dildology.org, you can get a free sex toy drawing called a Dildoodle (see above for an example) signed and hand-drawn by me for you of the sex toy of your choice (subject to me freaking out that I can’t draw that).
Send me an email after you donate and, once I confirm your donation, I’ll get chatting with you about what toy you want me to draw and send to you. It’s not much, I know, but I want to add a personal thank you.
So, please donate what you can, check out the rest of the great posts in the Dildology.org Blog Carnival Fundraiser and spread the word to everyone you can about this amazing cause. For safety, for science, for sex toys.