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Growing Social Acceptance of Sex Toys Across North America

Growing Social Acceptance of Sex Toys Across North America

Published by Programme B

The indication that sex toys had the potential to go mainstream in North America emerged during the 1970s. In the US, proponents of women’s liberation and gay and lesbian liberation were transforming cultural notions of sexuality and gender. While efforts to challenge the patriarchy continue to this day, women really had their work cut out for them back then. 

Most women saw sex as a duty rather than something to be enjoyed. Feminists began to portray masturbation as a liberating act. They wrote essays about the female orgasm and details. They attended groups for raising sexual awareness. Vibrators were positioned as essential women’s lib tools in the process. 

The Problem

There was one major issue: practically nowhere to obtain a vibrator. Places were few and far between, and not just that – you’d be hard-pressed to find a place where you could talk about sex openly. Women were not welcome in traditional adult stores. Some mail-order stores sold toys, but not to everyone, and usually only as “marital aids.” 

Is the Future of sex Toys Feminist? 

Slowly, things started to change. Today, many sex toy retail networks exist in North America, quite a few of which identify as feminist. The approach of these businesses to sales uses elements of therapy and education. Businesses by and for women have played a critical role in making sex toys more acceptable and respectable to communities across the continent. As a result, many people who didn’t imagine visiting an adult toy store have become paying customers. 

Online businesses play an equally crucial role. Many people are still shy when it comes to toys and averse to walking into a physical venue. Buying a vibrator, dildo, or any other sex device has become as simple and as discrete as pressing a button. 

Toys are Gaining Immense Popularity 

Between 2019 and 2023, the world market for sex toys is expected to grow by 7%. North America’s contribution to this projection is not insignificant. Toys are becoming more and more popular with changing attitudes and increasing awareness. There’s no shortage of products to choose from today: luxury toys, realistic dildos and even soft ones are becoming more widely available across retail outlets. 

The popularity of toys has not benefited just women. Couples have been able to improve their sex lives. Specialty and online shops let people purchase these products with ease. 

The Junction of Pleasure and Sexual Health

While stigma surrounding toys is slowly dissipating, not everything is perfect. Some stigma remains despite increased exposure and accessibility of toys. Many women are still embarrassed to talk about sexual health, even with their doctors and even in North America with its progressive culture and value of open communication. 

On the other hand, doctors are taught to focus on issues like STDs, contraception, and prevention in general. They pay little to no attention to sexual expression, arousal, and desire. This has adverse effects, even to the point of failure to diagnose medical conditions associated with lack of desire and arousal.  

Closing the Gender Gap 

The gap between the genders remains when it comes to sexual pleasure and orgasms. One study of university students revealed that just 39% of women were able to orgasm vs. 91% of men. It’s definitely time to raise awareness of sexual health and expression with a focus on women’s consent and enjoyment. 

Introducing toys is one way to help close the gap. Penetrative sex isn’t the only possible kind of sex. Just 25% of women reach climax during penetrative intercourse. It’s important to overcome fears and concerns over the use of sex toys. They can benefit both parties in any kind of relationship, but especially heterosexual ones. Studies have looked at male attitudes to vibrator use within their relationships with females. Many of them have found that the encounter was impacted positively by adding toys because men’s sexual pleasure was connected to the greater pleasure of their partner. 

The Golden age of sex Tech 

It wouldn’t be an overstatement to say the sex tech industry is in its heyday. Once a male-dominated industry like most others, it has seen an increase of startups led by women, which are finding success on the market. And this makes sense. Women understand what pleasures other women best. Ease of buying and technological advancements have made toys more appealing to women. 

There’s been a shift from men purchasing devices for women to women purchasing them for themselves in recent years. What does that mean? We’re not sure, but there’s definitely a trend there. 

Toys of the latest generation are efficient and superior. What’s more, you can hide some of them in plain sight. There are products that double as jewelry, for example vibrators that look like necklaces. These are a bit expensive, but the quality and convenience more than make up for the price. They also make a strong fashion statement and will go with any outfit. 

The Latest Technology

The most recent tech trend involves research into clitoral stimulation. As women remain the majority of users, scientists are looking for ways to develop toys that facilitate more intense orgasms. Sometimes, a person might have her very first orgasm with a toy. The products of today utilize airwaves to create a suction-like feeling on the clitoris that is very relaxing, but very intense at the same time. 

Focus on Sustainability 

Many toys are packaged in an environmentally unfriendly way. With tech advances, prices creep up, and there are many fakes on the market. These are of low quality and their disposal becomes an issue. Sex toys don’t last forever and they can’t be disposed of the way plastic, metal, or glass can. In North America, most cities won’t recycle sex toys because they have electronic parts and/or are made of silicone, which doesn’t degrade. Their batteries are an issue as well. For the environment’s sake, invest in a quality product that will last long because it’s very likely our old toys are in a landfill somewhere right now.