Juli Ashton ultra harness - g-string harness by Doc Johnson - review by Pretties

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Good Idea but Flawed Execution

Five years ago this was the best looking set for a couple setting out to try strap-ons, as it seemed to aim to place both the wearer and the receiver. However, it mostly fails in this aim, and there are now several far better and above all more comfortable O-ring style harnesses available - and lots of dildos that fit them made of much more body safe materials than the toxic jelly of those that come in this set.
Published:
Pros:
Looks nice
Wide range of attachments can be bought for it
Cons:
Jelly material of attachments
Fiddly to adjust wearer's attachments
Rating by reviewer:
2
useful review

Use

The Julie Ashton ultra harness set is one of the most appealing of the Doc Johnson Vac U Lock strap-on kits, and as such is aimed at couples who want to explore strap-on play. Since the style of the harness is that of a g-string, it cannot really be comfortably worn by a man, although I suppose you could try. The accessories included are: the Vac U Lock base; two bottles of the powder lubricant (to go on the Vac U Lock base so you can remove it after use); a probe style dildo; and two butt plug style attachments intended for the wearer, one larger than the other. These last two are permanently attached to Vac U Lock bases that can be threaded on to the central thong of the harness facing in wards. From our experience I would say it is aimed at beginners, partly because the attachments are soft and not big enough to be intimidating, but mainly because if you had any experience with strap-ones you would not buy this kit for reasons I'll expand on later.
  • Who / How / What
    [ ? ]
    Who might this product be best for? How is it best used? What are the best circumstances or situations for using this product?
    • Gender play
    • Pegging
    • Strap-on sex
  • Where
    [ ? ]
    Where / what types of places can this product be used?
    • Around the house
    • Bedroom
  • Features
    [ ? ]
    What kind of features does this product offer?
    • Swappable attachments

Material

Let's start with the positive: the harness itself. This is a nice deep purple leather, yes, real leather (as far as I can tell) which looks very attractive (unless you don't like purple) and has proved very durable. We bought it five years ago and whilst it hasn't been used extensively we haven't treated it or anything, it's travelled a lot but hasn't deteriorated in any noticeable way. In terms of hygiene I'm not so sure if you're wearing this directly on your private parts as intended, it certainly wouldn't be safe for sharing and does retain a bit of smell. The Vac U Lock base is also not bad, it's hard plastic which is durable and wipe clean with a soft velvety underside that is less easy to clean, but it sits on your skin so whilst not safe for sharing should be fine for just one wearer.

Where this kit falls down is the jelly the attachments are made of. Now sure, so begin with they didn't smell too bad and for beginners felt pretty nice, smooth and soft for both of us, although the material is so soft on the smallest of the plugs you can feel the hardness of the plastic base through it, which isn't too comfortable. However, after a few months they really started to smell strongly in an unpleasant chemical way, they left a weird oily residue on cardboard and in a test that I don't recommend when the base was tasted with my tongue it gave me a horrible burning sensation! Needless to say, they went straight in the bin.
    • Jelly
    • Leather
    • Smooth

Design / Craftsmanship

If you haven't examined the Vac U Lock system before, this is how it works: the front of the harness as a small hole, big enough for the protrusion of the base but not for any kind of dildo other than the thinnest of probes. The base then has metal poppers to fix it firmly to the inside of the harness, and dildos in the system have a small hole in the base that the protrusion fits into - if you intend to take it off you need to squirt so of the powder into the hole first or it's very hard to get off. The idea is that this keeps the dildo more stable during thrusting than O-ring style (or at least the ones available when we were looking) and allows you to swap dildos depending on what you want at the time. You can also get suction cup bases, handles and double ended bases so as to expand the uses to which you can put the dildos you have.

Whilst we found that the dildo was indeed quite stable, we also found that the base of the main attachment, being hard plastic dug in quite uncomfortably to the bottom of the wearer's stomach. This was disappointing as it undermines the whole point of the system, and you can't use non-Vac U Lock dildos with it, so we're left with a harness we don't want to use much. To compound this, while the attachments for the wearer are also on Vac U Lock style bases implying that you could change them for other dildos, you can't without cutting them off the plastic (though you might not mind doing that given the material they're made of). Even ignoring this flaw and the material, it is very fiddle to get them in the right position on the thong (completely killing the mood) and then once inserted they really didn't do much for her. There is a small slit in the inside of the front of the harness to attach a vibrator for the wearer, but we haven't found any that fit securely and comfortably there, so another fail in the execution.

The included dildo is fairly comfortable, though the end is a little pointy - in fact when we tried using a condom on it for hygiene and ease of cleaning, it broke on that tip. Again the only really positive thing I can say about it is the actual harness, whist is well made in that it has lasted well though the straps are quite thin so can dig in a bit with particularly energetic thrusting.
    • Fits many size toys
    • Only works with some toys

Size / Fit

Both the waist band and central thong of the harness are adjustable and should fit a wide variety of body shapes - perhaps not the largest but it's certainly not just aimed at the skinniest demographic. Also since it's leather with a buckle system, if the available holes aren't quite your fit you can add your own to fine tune the fitting, but as mentioned above the width of the straps can dig in.

As for the attachments, before we threw them out they were a fine fit for beginners, but more experienced users would want to invest in some other, larger dildos.
    • Adjustable
    • Straps too thin and dig in
    • Will fit most body sizes and types

Performance

As mentioned above, fitting the two attachments for the wearer comfortably is really quite difficulty and kills the mood, particularly annoying as you probably want to remove them for cleaning so then need to reattach them the next time. In any case they didn't do much for her. The main dildo system was actually fairly easy to use, but as mentioned the top of the plastic base dug in painfully during thrusting. In all it hasn't really encouraged us to use it very often, which is a real disappointment.
    • Chafes
    • Difficult to adjust

Care and Maintenance

It's leather so if you did use it a lot you should probably wax it every so often, and certainly wash it with soap and water after each use. We haven't though and it's lasted fine just stored in a box.
    • Easy to store
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This review was edited by
  • Slutty Girl Problems Slutty Girl Problems
  • Rank:
     
    8.6
  • Edited reviews: 6
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Comments
  • Slutty Girl Problems
    Slutty Girl Problems  
    Congratulations on your first review!!!

    Thank you for including so much detail, even though this product didn't ultimately work for you. The details are wonderful to help someone considering this product!

    Also, I'm SO glad you mentioned the jelly attachments. Jelly toys don't just smell and taste toxic - they ARE toxic! They contain phthalates, which are not body safe.

    Thank you for sharing your experience - and alerting readers of the jelly!
  • Wicked Wahine
    Wicked Wahine  
    Not all jelly contains phthalates (however, there are other chemicals in jelly that can cause irritations as well). I just wanted to be specific because many people will see Eden offers some jelly toys, but they ARE careful to not sell toys with phthalates in them. As for toxicity, the problem lies in that the specific mixture of chemicals used by the manufacturer do not have to be revealed because the item is being sold for "novelty" use. So, while it might be accurate to say that some jelly toys are toxic, unless it's been proven, you might want to use some modifiers when talking about it, such as saying "Jelly toys are potentially toxic and to avoid irritation, it would be safer to use a condom with it."
  • Pretties
    Pretties  
    Thank you, I'm glad you liked the review. I thought after the help EF reviews have given me in choosing toys even though I'm not in the US it was time I contributed to give a little back.

    Yes, Wicked Wahine, that is precisely why I said that they smelled toxic rather than declaring that they are, as not having a lab I am unable to actually test them. I believe this set was labelled as being "phthalates free" from what I remember, so assuming that's true there's still definitely something in them that neither of us want in our bodies! We're currently going through our toy collection and replacing all our jelly toys with ones made from more body safe materials, and I would urge anyone else to do the same.
  • Wicked Wahine
    Wicked Wahine  
    Sorry, Pretties, I was referring to Slutty Girl Problems' comment that they are toxic; I didn't mean there were any issues with your review. I neglected to put a "@ Slutty Girl Problems" at the beginning of my comment, so I apologize if I made you feel you had to defend your review. And I did notice you were careful how you worded that which I definitely appreciated.
  • edeneve
    edeneve  
    good start at reviewing. wouldn't the powder be useful to coat the dildo with so it would tame its stickiness when storing? a little more proofing would be helpful.
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