Since I’m about to spend the next few weeks talking about sex toys over on YouTube, I figured I should also give you some information about where I go to shop for my toys and sexy accouterments.
Some people have never thought twice about what kind of store they shop at; they get in, they get out, and they go about their day – no matter what they’re shopping for. Me? I like to shop places where the staff like to chat. Because I like friendly staff, I like the idea that I can become known in a store I frequent often, and I really like to know the sales associates are gonna be cool when I tell my thick thighs are eating my tights, and not go all bug eyed because I talked about my fat.
Sex Shop are especially like that for me. With the exception of a few tried and true products I really want a store where I know I’ll feel comfortable talking to the associates about any questions, or any concerns I have, and I definitely don’t want them sending any negative vibes my way. When I’m working with clients who are nervous about sex toy shopping and want a welcoming, truly sex positive, comfortable (or, at least, as comfortable as possible) experience, these are the stores I recommend. Try them out – try a few of them out, see what you like, and don’t about each place, who staff gives the recommendations that fit your style best, and don’t forget to give a peek to all the non toy extras like workshops, tours, podcasts, and events.
Comes as You Are – Toronto – my local haunt. Staff are always friendly, knowledgeable, and have done special orders just so I could get the sexuality books I’ve wanted over the years.
Good for Her – Toronto – Also the store that hosts the Feminist Porn Awards, and has special hours for women and trans* shoppers only. True story: once, Tristan Toamino helped me look for something in the store. No, she doesn’t work there, she was just in town for the Feminist Porn and helped me do some shopping!
The rest of the list I haven’t shopped at personally, but I’ve met their founders, owners, associates, educators – someone from the store – and know enough about their philosophy and style to be comfortable recommending them to you.
Babeland – Seattle, New York, Brooklyn – I’m not sure if it’s just been my luck, but every Babeland employee I’ve met in my travels is fun on a stick, with enough creativity to make just about every idea I’m wondered about out loud into a reality.
Good Vibrations – San Francisco, Berkeley, Oakland, Palo Alto, Massachusetts – The majority of my favourite Sex Educators have worked at these stores at some point in their careers. In addition to toys, Good Vibes has a serious educational focus which really scores points with a workshop junkie like me.
Pleasure Chest – Chicago, New York, Los Angeles – Since 1971 y’all! In addition to being a great store, these are the minds behind Sex Is Back, which is a website dedicated to people sharing their stories, experiences, fears, and funny-as-fuck moments around sex. Check out my clips!
All of these stores do have online sales – but when you aren’t sure what you want, I really recommend an in person visit so you can get a proper look at the options, put them in your hands and ask any “silly” questions that might come up.
That list is not even remotely exhaustive; so if you want to see more check out The Redhead Beadhead on her Super Hero Sex Shops Tour.