Movie star buzz: how stars’ bed room toys have gotten us all speaking about intercourse | Intercourse
Lily Allen has one. Cara Delevingne has one. Dakota Johnson has developed her own range. Will Celebrity Sex Toys 2021 be the Answer to Celebrity Perfume?
For some, keeping busy during the pandemic was the last thing on the menu. Study after study, from India to Italy, has shown that the loss of lockdown libido is real and that stress killed the excitement in the bedroom. Sexual well-being, on the other hand, has reached a dizzying peak. For Generation Z, not only has the discussion about sexual pleasure changed, the related industry – from apps to toys, herbal supplements to special oils – is booming.
Cara Delevingne is one of those celebrities who advocate “solo pleasure”. Photo: Swan Gallet / WWD / REX / Shutterstock
“Sexual well-being is pleasure and pleasure is health,” says Cecile Gasnault, Brand Director of Smile Makers, who have tripled the sales of their chic pastel vibrators worldwide in the last 12 months. “It encompasses more than the physicality of sex. It’s about our mental and physical well-being. Celebrities have helped normalize this conversation and remove the stigma and shame people have previously felt from connecting with and understanding their bodies. “
Gasnault has a point: the global sexual wellness industry is expected to be worth £ 90 billion by 2026 and is powered by young women who are moving away from the goofy and seedy prejudices of the old days and indulging in the idea that sexual pleasure is Be it alone or in partnership – is self-care that’s as basic as replenishing vitamins or finding the right moisturizer.
“People often worry that masturbation is a bad thing instead of seeing it as a positive part of their health,” says Gasnault. “It’s like saying that if you like to jog you can’t run at a soccer game. You don’t compete. They can bring new things to each other. “
In the UK, leading beauty retailer Cult Beauty changed the market in spring 2019 by introducing a sex wellness section on its website. It deliberately stocks cute sex accessories by Lelo, Maude, Smile Makers and others that are marketed to customers who, according to a brand spokesperson, “would not be seen dead in Ann Summers,” or a specialized sex shop. Other dealers have followed. Customers can now find special sexual wellness areas in the health food stores Planet Organic and Holland & Barrett, a pelvic floor trainer at Boots or Selfridges and yoni oils, vibrators and massage devices at Oliver Bonas. Last week, Bloomingdale’s became the first major department store in the US to open a sex wellness shop “full of eco-friendly and body-friendly goodies.”
A sex toy from Lelo. Photo: lelo
Design is crucial: the most successful sex tech startups create products that are both visually and physically pleasing. Lionness built the world’s first “biofeedback vibrator”, while Womanizer is committed to the world’s first recyclable and biodegradable sex toy. The language around them uses the distinct woo-woo tone that the wellness industry – be it sleep, skin care, or meditation – has mastered over the past decade.
Chloe Macintosh, founder of the free sex wellness app, Kama, which teaches mindful sex, has described her new mission as “more than a business, but a social movement.” Former Chief Creative Officer of Soho House Group built a platform that is quickly becoming a sex, love and intimacy super brand, backed by models and sex positive activists like Daisy Lowe and Munroe Bergdorf.
There are sex tutorials and practices on it that are designed to help users better understand their bodies for maximum pleasure. “When your brain is motivated to have fun and drawn to enjoyable experiences, you feel better,” says Macintosh. “That’s why we at Kama focus on creating a joyous practice, it’s really a way of creating a balance in our systems. We often look at pleasure in terms of our access to material things, but joy and desire drive our development. Therefore, it is important that we connect with them if we want to create a healthy and sustainable world. “
Commodifying personal pleasure and tying it with protecting the planet seems like a bold claim, but users are excited and vocal on social media. Many like to share selfies and feedback with Kama, Smile Makers, and Leo, all brands keen to build communities, not just customers around their products.
“Sex toys are still considered taboo,” said Allen at the launch of their Womanizer last fall. “The only way to stop making topics taboo is to talk about them openly, often, and without shame or guilt.”