Let's dispell the myth that cheap toys are "good for beginners."

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Let's dispell the myth that cheap toys are "good for beginners."

P'Gell P'Gell
On more than a couple of reviews (here and on other sites) a few reviewers seem to not like a toy, usually due to cheap materials, only surface, buzzy, or less than intense vibrations and/or poor workmanship and some claim, "It would be good for a beginner."

It's beginning to bug me. IMO, "Beginners" either those starting their sex lives or starting their "sex toy" lives need good quality, good vibrational, quality workmanship toys not crap.

I've seen too many people (mainly women) complain that "vibrators don't work for me" only to find out, after much probing, that they have only tried very inexpensive, poorly made toys.

Don't "beginners" deserve the best as well? In fact, those of us who don't consider ourselves "beginners" can probably tolerate a poorly made toy more, knowing full well that this particular toy is NOT the standard of excellence for the Sex Toy Industry and that not all vibrators/toys are equal. Most of us know there is better out there. More than someone who has only known one toy, and gives up on sex toys due to it being poorly made and lacking in quality.

If we can maybe agree that "a good toy for beginners" might (or might not be) a toy without a lot of bells and whistles, one with a nice size, but not huge (it depends on who the beginner is) but that will give them a good experience, even if it costs a bit more, I'd be happier.

Just had to say my piece.

Peace.

10/11/2010
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Sir Sir
I feel the same way. Generally, the only time that something is good for a "beginner" is if it's a good starter toy - not intimidating, well-made, reliable, good for a few years at least.

Overall though, it's rare that I ever use this term because it's simply not the right term to use. A bad toy or product is simply that - a bad toy or product. Some toys, however, might work better for others if they are softer or less involved.
10/11/2010
Kim! Kim!
Well thought out and definitely an excellent point. I agree, I don't believe I've made this mistake but if I did, well, I was still sort of a beginner. When I'm procrastinating on this paper even more than I am right now I just might go back through my reviews to double check.
10/11/2010
Jul!a Jul!a
Quote:
Originally posted by Sir
I feel the same way. Generally, the only time that something is good for a "beginner" is if it's a good starter toy - not intimidating, well-made, reliable, good for a few years at least.

Overall though, it's rare that I ever ...
That's generally the same way I group things for beginners. I'm a little less strict on how long it lasts, but I classify good for beginners as well made enough to last you a while, vibrations that aren't generally crazy strong, and a non-intimidating size/shape.
10/11/2010
Owl Identified Owl Identified
We've definitely had conversations like this on the forums before (fuck if I know where though...) and I agree with you whole-heartedly. When I say a toy is good for a beginner I generally mean:

- it's user-friendly/easy to use
- fairly low maintenance
- is relatively small and relatively mild in terms of settings and such to provide a good starting point for figuring out "what kinds of stimulation I like"

I also think simple designs are more beginner-friendly. I would generally not suggest the Pure Wand for a beginner because it's heavy, could hurt you if used improperly, and has a funky shape. The Bent Graduate I would recommend, however, because it zooms in on the G-spot but is less likely to hurt you and is easier to figure out.
10/11/2010
Owl Identified Owl Identified
Oh! And in terms of durability, I think that's debatable.

To me? I almost think it's better to suggest a cheap plastic bullet for a beginner because if they try it and hate it they didn't waste a lot of money and, hey, they learned something about their vibration preferences.

So I don't think a first toy HAS to be one that lasts forever or anything. In some ways I almost think that's a bit of a commitment to make as a beginner. I know I tried a lot of vibrators before I really learned what I liked. Frankly, it wasn't until a few months ago that I could describe exactly what I wanted and I'm not a beginner by any means.
10/11/2010
Owl Identified Owl Identified
(Sorry another post...I keep thinking of new things...)

I'm really glad this topic re-surfaced! I really like topics that talk about improving reviews, and not in a superficial way like "should you capitalize (some word) or not?" Eff grammar, people can get over it if they don't like that I say "cum" when they prefer "come," but when it comes (no pun intended) to providing potential buyers solid advice? I'm always down to debate that and listen to suggestions.
10/11/2010
Rockin' Rockin'
Quote:
Originally posted by Owl Identified
Oh! And in terms of durability, I think that's debatable.

To me? I almost think it's better to suggest a cheap plastic bullet for a beginner because if they try it and hate it they didn't waste a lot of money and, hey, they ...
I think this is an excellent point. When I was first looking into sex toys (especially vibrators since they were such a mystery) I wanted to try a few different types and didn't want to drop a lot of money on something that might not work for me.
10/11/2010
Jobthingy Jobthingy
I will say it is good for a beginner if it is reasonably priced and not a power house. If someone has never played with vibrations before they sure as hell do want to drop a fortune on it or be buzzed off the bed
10/11/2010
Kindred Kindred
There is a subtle difference between "cheap" and inexpensive. Inexpensive toys can be good choices for beginners looking to explore a new type of toy. If by cheap you mean poorly made, then yes, those are not good choices for beginners as they tend to lead to disappointing experiences and turn off the beginner.

I make this clarification because I believe there are inexpensive toys that are still well made.
10/11/2010
Victoria Victoria
Quote:
Originally posted by Owl Identified
We've definitely had conversations like this on the forums before (fuck if I know where though...) and I agree with you whole-heartedly. When I say a toy is good for a beginner I generally mean:

- it's user-friendly/easy to use
- ...
I 100% agree - could not have said it better myself
10/11/2010
Darling Jen Darling Jen
I think that cheaper toys are better for people's wallets. And if you decide you don't like the vibrations, material, functions, controls, texture, or even the color, it's no great loss to you. So I only ever consider cheap toys good beginner toys because it's easier to afford experimenting to find out what features really turn you on.

Though on the same hand, there are some cheap ones are better for advanced users. And some that are just bad. But reviews should always include the personal opinions of the reviewer. We don't want people leaving out their personal experience or trying to guess what others' would be. I always want to hear about what they as individuals thought of the product and if they say they think it's a beginner's toy, I always keep that in mind.
10/11/2010
ToyGeek ToyGeek
I have encountered the "good for beginners" attitude in other realms as well. Cheap sports equipment, for example, gets labeled 'good for beginners' because the parents don't want to spend a lot when the kid might quit in three months. Then the beginner gets the cheap whatever, suffers the known side effects of the cheap whatever, and does quit. And then everyone's glad that not a lot of money was wasted. The logic is painful when examined, yet reinforces itself in practice.
10/11/2010
clp clp
Quote:
Originally posted by Sir
I feel the same way. Generally, the only time that something is good for a "beginner" is if it's a good starter toy - not intimidating, well-made, reliable, good for a few years at least.

Overall though, it's rare that I ever ...
I agree with that. A basic toy does not need to be cheap, but I can see how it can happen--a person may be apprehensive to invest a lot of money into something they don't know will work, or how, or what to look for.
10/11/2010
Airen Wolf Airen Wolf
Quote:
Originally posted by Owl Identified
We've definitely had conversations like this on the forums before (fuck if I know where though...) and I agree with you whole-heartedly. When I say a toy is good for a beginner I generally mean:

- it's user-friendly/easy to use
- ...
Agreed *nods head
10/11/2010
Waterfall Waterfall
Quote:
Originally posted by Kindred
There is a subtle difference between "cheap" and inexpensive. Inexpensive toys can be good choices for beginners looking to explore a new type of toy. If by cheap you mean poorly made, then yes, those are not good choices for beginners as ...
I agree with this, not all inexpensive toys are cheaply made and a beginner may not know exactly what they will really enjoy so then can try new things without spending a lot of money.
10/11/2010
Viktor Vysheslav Malkin Viktor Vysheslav Malkin
Quote:
Originally posted by Sir
I feel the same way. Generally, the only time that something is good for a "beginner" is if it's a good starter toy - not intimidating, well-made, reliable, good for a few years at least.

Overall though, it's rare that I ever ...
Gotta agree with Sir

I also sometimes feel the same as you P'Gell
10/12/2010
P'Gell P'Gell
Quote:
Originally posted by Kindred
There is a subtle difference between "cheap" and inexpensive. Inexpensive toys can be good choices for beginners looking to explore a new type of toy. If by cheap you mean poorly made, then yes, those are not good choices for beginners as ...
Right. When I said "cheap" I meant poorly made.

I also think "beginner" toys should be ones that DO come with multiple vibrational settings. Some women have never had an orgasm, and if she tries a one speed, "cheap" plastic toy, with surface buzzy vibrations and doesn't get any satisfaction with it, she may think "vibrators don't work for me, I can't Come from sex, I'm hopeless." I actually SAW this happen a while ago, when I was on a group for women with Persistent Arousal Syndrome (an other topic) a LOT of these women were using really horrible, poorly made vibrators, because someone told them these cheap, badly made, low vibration ones were "for beginners" and they got no good from them, and were more miserable than ever.

With a toy with multiple speeds, a woman can find her OWN vibrational preference. Not all beginners have oversensitive clitorises. Some women, even from the beginning, have High Orgasmic Thresholds and as beginners to sex toys, may not realize that not all vibrators are the same, and think they are incapable of having orgasms. If we think "gentle" toys are always for beginners, these women will be left cold. And, they may not even think to buy a better, or more useful toy. Some women actually do give up on ever having an orgasm.

Also, many women assume "All sex toys are equal." They don't know the business the way many of us do, and assume if the $10.00, crappy, buzzy, pinchy vibe they bought at Spencer's doesn't bring them to Orgasm, then ALL vibrators are just as bad.

Although I do agree, most toy "beginners" aren't going to start with a Pure Wand. I know my second toy was a rather expensive Fun Factory AND my Wahl. Not what most people would consider "beginner toys" but unlike a lot of newbies, at the time, I did a lot of research. Most women simply assume the poorly made vibrator is the norm for the industry and may give up on toy altogether, missing a LOT of good experiences, many will NOT go out, after a bad experience with a poor quality toy and spend more money the second time. Whereas, if she had used a GOOD toy from the beginning, she would have had a better experience and learned a lot about herself and her body and maybe gained an interest in even better and more interesting toys and sex techniques.

A GOOD quality toy, with more than one speed and good, rumbling vibrations is, IMO, perfect for "beginners."

I also think we need to get over the idea that all newbies to sex toys are new to sex. I had been having sex for DECADES before I ever got my first sex toy. And I needed a large, girthy, strong toy. A lot of women discover sex toys in their 30s or beyond, and are already experienced in real world sex. For these women (like in my case) a little tiny pocket rocket or nothing other than a bullet won't hit the spot. I didn't buy a bullet until I was well "experienced" with sex toys. And even then, it was more for warm up as I have rarely ever been able to orgasm with it. We need to realize that not all toy "newbies" are girls in their teens or early 20s. Many NEED strong and large toys, too.
10/12/2010
Liz2 Liz2
Quote:
Originally posted by Owl Identified
Oh! And in terms of durability, I think that's debatable.

To me? I almost think it's better to suggest a cheap plastic bullet for a beginner because if they try it and hate it they didn't waste a lot of money and, hey, they ...
I agree here. My first toy was on a whim, it wasn't great but certainly peaked my interest. I think women would be put off if the entry into the sex toy world was $100 or so.
Yes, I have had some useless toys but even so they were part of my learning experience. When someone asks for a suggestion, I will recommend something in the $25 range, even less. It is unfortunate that some of the stand alone stores sell so much junk at exorbitant prices. This also discourages users.
And also as we should know, every toy, regardless of price, doesn't work for everyone.
10/12/2010
Illusional Illusional
Quote:
Originally posted by Owl Identified
We've definitely had conversations like this on the forums before (fuck if I know where though...) and I agree with you whole-heartedly. When I say a toy is good for a beginner I generally mean:

- it's user-friendly/easy to use
- ...
Yeah, I don't choose cheap toys but the ones that are simplistic and not crazy sex party going on.
10/12/2010
Pleasure Piratess Pleasure Piratess
Such a good topic. I do usually try to include the words beginner and/or advanced in many of my reviews in terms of many of the same qualities suggested above because it is EF suggested, but lately I have been trying to use the words "sensitive" or "power-queen" in regards to the same concern. I agree, even as a beginner I did not like small buzzy toys and it stands to reason others may not either. Seeing as how everyone else seems to feel much the same, I'm wondering if we shouldn't scrap the term "beginners toy" out most of the time and try to find something else that would denote a toys usefullness.
10/12/2010
Carrie Ann Carrie Ann
I agree that far too often I see reviews where a crappy product is touted as great for beginners and just as often wish the reviewer would just say it's crappy instead of encouraging new people to buy shitty toys.

But.

I also think we need to use caution in assuming beginners are only new to sex toys, not sex, and may want giant, jackhammer toys. This may be the case for some people but we need to have a standard for what a "beginner" is - we don't want some young woman with no sexual experience buying a 1.75 inch diameter toy because someone recommended it was good for beginners. It's not going to be, not for MOST beginners.

I believe the category P'Gell is speaking of is different than "beginners" as the term is generally used standardly in the industry. It's also a totally different topic than crap vs quality.

A crap toy is a crap toy, regardless of its size, shape and vibrational intensity.

A standard beginner toy is a standard beginner toy and is good for standard beginners.

A substantial, high powered, good quality toy is different than a beginner toy and, rather than assume it is good for all beginners, we should perhaps recommend those for people new to sex toys but not sex. Someone who is sexually experienced, someone who is having a hard time with orgasm and looking for help, is not necessarily a "beginner". I kind of expect a 30 something woman who has had sex before but wants more, better orgasms to know she's not a beginner.

I'd have been horrified if someone handed me a Wahl or a Hitachi as my first sex toy. I'd have never picked up a vibrator again. My first rabbit WAS so big I didn't look at sex toys for a long time after trying it.

I'm babbling away here and not making any sense. One cup of coffee just isn't cutting it.

Maybe we should cease using the term beginner for the most part, as what that "is" can't really be determined by us?
10/12/2010
Chilipepper Chilipepper
As a woman in her 30's with little sexual experience and using toys for the first time I CAN use the word 'beginner' and mean it when studying and reviewing a product. As long as it's not intimidating and not complicated but well-made, everything's good for exploration.

I just got my first rabbit and the damn thing scares me ... this is going to take some getting used to. :-/
10/12/2010
Owl Identified Owl Identified
Quote:
Originally posted by Carrie Ann
I agree that far too often I see reviews where a crappy product is touted as great for beginners and just as often wish the reviewer would just say it's crappy instead of encouraging new people to buy shitty toys.

But.

I also think ...
These are also really good points. You make sense, you do!

At the very least, if we say "beginner" perhaps we should clarify. "Beginners to penetration may not like this..." or "Beginners to anal..." and so forth.

My question is the vibration thing. How to talk about that. Maybe just "for those that know they like intense stimulation" or something to talk about Wahl/Hitachi products? I don't know, this has always irked me. The conflation of beginner with complete newcomer to sexual activity, which is definitely false as you point out.
10/12/2010
P'Gell P'Gell
Quote:
Originally posted by Carrie Ann
I agree that far too often I see reviews where a crappy product is touted as great for beginners and just as often wish the reviewer would just say it's crappy instead of encouraging new people to buy shitty toys.

But.

I also think ...
I think you're making a LOT of sense, Carrie Ann.

I agree. There is a huge difference between a late teen-early 20something girl who has only been having PIV or penetrative sex for a few months or is still not sexually active being a "Beginner to sex AND sex toys" and a 25+ or 30something woman, who has sexual experience but wants MORE of that experience and is just starting out on her Journey to the Land of Toys.

As you and Sybarite said, maybe we should scrap the term "beginner" altogether, as it can mean SO many different things.

Oddly enough, though, the Wahl was part of my first purchase of sex toys. I was not a "beginner" to sex, as I said. I was over 35, and having only had one sex toy, a realistic vibe of suspect material, picked out and "Gifted" to me by My Man, I then wanted something strong to help with waning (but once healthy) orgasmic ability. My once hair trigger orgasmic ability had taken a hard hit due to early peri-menopause, so I needed strength, and had experience in girth, due to My Man and I being together since forever. I bought the Boss Lady and the Wahl, as my very first sex toy purchase on my own.
10/12/2010
P'Gell P'Gell
Quote:
Originally posted by Owl Identified
These are also really good points. You make sense, you do!

At the very least, if we say "beginner" perhaps we should clarify. "Beginners to penetration may not like this..." or "Beginners to anal..." and so ...
Exactly. I often compare toys power to the Hitachi or the Wahl, especially if the vibrations are strong. I assume a lot of (although not all) women are familiar with them. (And it always gets me when I see a review for a $19.99 plastic pocket rocket who someone has awarded a "Vroom" of 5. I always think, "No way, that's Hitachi and Wahl territory!") Maybe for someone with one or two toys, this is their strongest one, but I think a 5 on the Vroom scale is reserved for only a few select toys. (Yeah, I'm becoming a Toy Snob. )

In fact, I do know some women whose only sex toy is a Hitachi.

I think because many of us here have many sex toys and many have started "early" in their sexual experiences with toys along with partnered sex, that some of us may see sex toys in a really different light than new comers to these items.
10/12/2010
Chilipepper Chilipepper
Quote:
Originally posted by P'Gell
Exactly. I often compare toys power to the Hitachi or the Wahl, especially if the vibrations are strong. I assume a lot of (although not all) women are familiar with them. (And it always gets me when I see a review for a $19.99 plastic pocket rocket ...
P'Gell: I think because many of us here have many sex toys and many have started "early" in their sexual experiences with toys along with partnered sex, that some of us may see sex toys in a really different light than new comers to these items.

YES.
10/12/2010
Alicia Alicia
I do think that cheaper toys..or let's say inexpensive toys can be better for beginners. The reason being that most beginners don't know what will work for them. It'd suck for someone to spend over $50 on a toy just to find out that the shape or size of that toy doesn't stimulate them the way they expected. When I first started out I bought a lot of inexpensive toys to see what worked for me. Then, if something about that toy worked well I looked for something a bit more expensive and a bit more durable to replace the toy with.

But, like others have said in the thread, a crap toy is just crap. For everyone. There's no point in recommending a crap toy to beginners.
10/12/2010
Mr. E Mr. E
P'Gell,

Great topic. I'm glad you had the courage to bring it up.
10/12/2010
Mr. E Mr. E
Quote:
Originally posted by Carrie Ann
I agree that far too often I see reviews where a crappy product is touted as great for beginners and just as often wish the reviewer would just say it's crappy instead of encouraging new people to buy shitty toys.

But.

I also think ...
We realized years ago that my wife always seemed to come down with a nasty infection shortly after using sex toys. In fact it got to the point that we had sworn off sex toys completely, until we discovered the more body friendly materials.

I touched on this on another thread somewhere else, but I'll say it again. I feel that so many of the CRAP toys being sold are actually a disservice to the entire industry.

After people have a bad experience they take their business elsewhere. Certainly you won't go back to a new restaurant if it made you sick the first time you ate there. Sex toys are the same way. People who purchase toys that taste and smell like old tires marinated in gnarly chemicals, or weak vibrators with unfinished edges and faulty wiring, will be reluctant to try again. Lets just say the crappy toys leave a bad taste in their mouths.

Well designed quality toys that are appropriately sized and reasonably priced will lead to satisfied customers. Satisfied customers become repeat customers. This is especially important when dealing with customers placing their first order, beginners. I wonder if Eden has studied this at all. When a new customers first purchase turns out to be crap, do they come back for more crap?

As far as saying that a product is good for beginners, why would someone say that an over sized, $90 rabbit made from a low scoring non safe material was great for beginners? I recall reading something like that in a review recently. I'm not sure which product it was, but I bet you've all found yourself reading a review and wondering, "why would they say that?".
10/12/2010
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