Salsa

Discreet massager by We-vibe

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An amazing little powerhouse vibe.

The We-Vibe Salsa is a terrific vibrator; I think that it would be a great choice even for people who--gasp!--only want one vibrator. In addition to simply being very effective for beginner-to-advanced and solo or more-than-solo use, it has the main qualities people look for in a vibrator: power, ease of use, versatility, discreetness, quietness, and safety. And it has bonus features, too: it’s waterproof, rechargeable, and green. I'm a huge fan.
Published:
Pros:
Strong, quiet, discreet, easy-care & -use, waterproof, rechargeable, versatile, nice patterns.
Cons:
Shortish charge life, and ... uh ... too much power? maybe too much rigidity for some people/moods.
Rating by reviewer:
5
extremely useful review

Use

First, a note: I’ve seen people asking about the We-Vibe Salsa vs. the Tango (which you should check out if you haven't). I bought the Salsa because I loved the Tango so much. I wrote a shorter review of the Tango; this is a more detailed one, and virtually everything about the Salsa also applies to the Tango, with the only differences covered under “Personal Comments” below. I got sick of writing “the Salsa (and the Tango),” and I thought you might get sick of reading it, too. Okay, on to the review.

The Salsa would make a valuable addition to anyone’s toy collection. It offers a powerful yet quiet motor. It’s great for solo or partner use. It’d be a terrific gift. It’s fabulous for people living in situations where space is tight or where discretion in size, shape, and/or sound is desired. It fits basically anywhere you can fit a lipstick or a magic marker. It can be used in a tub. It’s like Green Eggs and Ham (“on a train … in the rain…”).

It’s good--and probably even better--for everything a bullet vibe is good for. It provides powerful stimulation to wherever you’d like vibrations: nipples, labia, penis, balls, perineum, anal area, and, of course, clit. It can be inserted into any toy with a hole or ring suitable for a 5/8” bullet vibe, like many dildos, vibrating cock rings, etc. Press it against virtually anything and it will transmit its vibrations--very well--through what it’s pressed against, including toys or body parts (see “Experience” below).

Do NOT, however, put this toy in your butt. I’ll put it this way: it’s shaped exactly like a suppository (though bigger), and the whole purpose of a suppository’s shape is to slide gently up your ass and disappear forever, or at least until it dissolves. The Salsa, though, will not dissolve.

Don’t insert it into your vagina, either, except using shallow penetration and a decent grip. An Accidental Vaginal Loss isn’t as bad as an anal one, but the Salsa is very slippery when wet. I’ve had to go toy-fishing in my vagina (for a different toy) with pliers, and it’s awkward and creepy-feeling.

It’s a little expensive, but will probably pay for itself during its lifetime because you don’t have to buy batteries. Totally worth it.

Size
  • 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?
    • Couples
    • Everyone
    • Solo
  • Where
    [ ? ]
    Where / what types of places can this product be used?
    • Anywhere
    • Campus/roommate living
    • Tub/shower/pool
  • Features
    [ ? ]
    What kind of features does this product offer?
    • Travel friendly
  • Body / part areas
    [ ? ]
    What areas on the body can this product be used / what areas does it stimulate best?
    • All over body
    • Clitoris
    • Nipples

Material / Texture

The Salsa is made of PC-ABS thermoplastic. I have no idea what that means. Eden lists it as plastic, rating it 8 out of 10 in material safety. It’s phthalate-free and nonporous. It feels super sturdy and resilient. It’s utterly smooth and slides easily across skin.

It’s hard and firm, with no squishiness to it at all. If you require any squishiness, you won’t get it from the Salsa. It’s not quite glass or steel, but it’s hard. You can knock on it and hear a knocking sound. If you tweaked it with your finger, it’d hurt your nail. The advantage to this hardness, though, is that vibrations transmit strongly throughout the Salsa.

I haven’t used any lubricant with it; it might be hard to hold onto with lube. If you do use lube, a little will go a long way.

The only texture on the body of the Salsa is a barely noticeable “We-Vibe Salsa” imprinted near the base. The base itself is white plastic, with two tiny metal bumps where the charger connects, and a raised, smushier area that is the Salsa’s only control button.

It doesn’t smell or taste like anything to me.

Since the Salsa’s texture mostly involves a lack thereof, it’s totally suitable for beginners or advanced users. If you require texture, this is not the vibrator for you. Otherwise, there’s nothing about the texture that would be a problem for anyone.
    • Not porous at all
    • Rigid
    • Smooth

Design / Shape / Size

The Salsa is 5/8” in diameter and 3” long, which is almost exactly the size of my middle finger. I compared it to a Sharpie in the picture. It’s a great size for beginners or advanced users, and incredibly discreet. Easy-to-lose-ably discreet, too, but the advantages of its size totally outweigh that inconvenience.

It’s … vibrator shaped, a cylinder that comes to a rounded point at the end, like a bullet vibe or a smaller version of what most people picture when they picture a generic vibrator. The tip is fairly pointy, but not in a sharp way, just enough to provide excellent pinpoint stimulation. If you prefer a broader area of stimulation, the Salsa can be angled slightly or even completely (so its side is against your skin). It’s a simple, iconic design, but I think it’s especially well executed in the We-Vibe toys.

If you like pinpoint vibrations, know that the vibrations are strong enough that you’ll feel them beyond the specific “point” you’re “pinning.” I like pinpoint stimulation because I want to feel the vibrations Right. There. It definitely does not bother me to feel them Right. There. And also anywhere within a certain range of There. But if “pinpoint” for you means right-there-and-nowhere-else, you may need something with less power.

Two semicircles of LED lights on the base grow brighter according to the intensity of the vibrations, so they’re dimmer on level 1, brighter on level 4, and flashing according to whatever pattern when you’re in those modes. I barely notice them. (The picture below is a little fuzzy because the Salsa's vibrating.)

Base of the Salsa

The Salsa comes with a charging cord and a “pod” that serves as the transition between the cord and the vibrator itself. The pod is extremely lose-able. Seriously, I lost it like three times just while taking pictures of the Salsa. I recommend keeping it plugged into the cord and/or in the included storage bag.

I got the black Salsa, which I love. The charging stuff and storage bag are white. I wish they were black, too. I figure, though, that if even Apple gives you white headphones and chargers with black iPhones, I shouldn’t expect We-Vibe to get all matchy. But wouldn’t it be pretty?

The Salsa’s small size and discreetness makes it suitable for travel, though (1) I still wouldn’t take it in my carry-on baggage and (2) it doesn’t have a locking feature, so I’d probably either run down the power before packing it or pack it so that the button doesn’t get pushed. Another option would be to pack it with the charging pod attached, which would block the button.
    • Beginner
    • Discreet look/design
    • Partner play

Functions / Performance / Controls

Controls:

The Salsa is controlled using a single button on the base. Push the button to turn the Salsa on and to cycle through the modes. To turn it off, hold the button for 2 seconds, or cycle through until you get back to the off setting. The Salsa remembers what setting it was last on when you turn it on, which is nice if you like to keep it on one setting. I like to move things around, though, so I often turn it on only to find that I don’t know whether I left it on, say, level 3 or 4. I try to remember to cycle it through to off so that I know I’m starting at level 1 the next time.

The single button is a little annoying because your control-changing is limited to moving up through the modes, then off, then up through the modes again. On the other hand, having the button at the end is useful because it’s easy to find and hard to accidentally hit. Plus, the Salsa is just so small and cute! The single button is a small price to pay.

Functions/Modes:

Here are the Salsa’s modes, including rpms as listed on We-Vibe’s website (again, these are true of the Tango, too):

1. Low, steady vibrations: 3000rpm. I find this one super-thuddy and almost can’t handle it. It’s kind of like when you’re in a motorboat and things are smoother when you pick up speed.
2. Medium steady vibrations: 3600rpm.
3. High steady vibrations: 4200rpm.
4. “Ultra” (really high) steady vibrations: 4800rpm. Mmmmmm.
5. Tease: BZZ. BZZ. BZZ. BZZ. bzbzbzbz. It's maybe 8 long buzzes and a dozen very fast, short ones.
6. Wave: bzzzZZZZzzzZZZZzzz. That’s not quite right, but you get the idea.
7. Pulse: Bz-Bz-Bz-Bz.
8. Cha-cha: BZZ. BZZ. bz-bz-bz.

I like all of them. I generally don’t use patterns, but I like these.

Charge/Recharging:

We-Vibe claims a charge time on both the Salsa and the Tango of “up to” two hours. However, since I found my Tango to have a shortish charge time, and I imagine that when they say “up to 2 hours” they mean “… on level 1,” I decided to test. I’ll have you know that I wrote this review with the Salsa in my left pants pocket, the Tango in my right, both vibrators on level 4, and a stopwatch going. I even did it twice. Here are the results:
Salsa: Trial 1: 52 minutes. Trial 2: 60 minutes.
Tango: Trial 1: 39 minutes. Trial 2: 54 minutes.

I attribute the difference to my individual items rather than to a difference between the models.

They also recharge fairly quickly. I timed one recharge on each of them, checking the light at 10-minute intervals, and here’s what I got:
Salsa: 90 minutes (which is exactly what is claimed)
Tango: 70 minutes

To charge, plus the cord into the pod and stick the Salsa’s base to the pod. The pins on the pod and the base will pull toward each other magnetically. A light on the pod tells you it's charging and turns off when the Salsa is fully charged. The Salsa can’t burn out by over-charging, so you can leave it plugged in. It also holds charge well when not plugged in.

Other Performance Issues:

The Salsa is very quiet. I’m sensitive about sound and, even when alone, prone to heaping covers, pillows, etc. on top of my crotch while using vibrators. Loud or jarring noises in vibrators just annoy me. The Salsa does not annoy me. I gave it 2 Bees, but given its power I think those Bees are well earned. Illustration: as I describe below, I had the Salsa in the pocket of a pair of cotton yoga pants while testing the charge time. It’s quiet enough that on the highest steady vibration, I felt comfortable answering the door when the UPS guy knocked on it.

It’s also really powerful. I gave it 4 Vrooms only because according to the review instructions, 5 Vrooms is “too powerful for most." It's really powerful, but I don't want readers to think that most people will find it too powerful.

The Salsa loses some power when I use pressure, but nowhere near as much as some other toys I’ve used. I’ve been trying to train myself to back off on the pressure because I find that I don’t need it with a toy this powerful. Applying pressure is more habit for me.

Holding the Salsa can be a bit awkward because it’s so small, slick, and powerful, but I don't find it bothersome. I hold it near the base, where the vibrations seem a bit less strong.

I think that you can be really confident about We-Vibe's claim that the Salsa is waterproof. It seems really watertight, and the charging mechanism is magnetic, so there are no holes. I don't have a bathtub (bummer, I know), but I've tried it in the shower and in a sink submersion test and it did great. I found myself worrying about dropping it onto the tile floor of the shower, though.

The Salsa heats up during use, but not too much.
    • Easy to use
    • Powerful
    • Rechargeable

Care and Maintenance

The We-Vibe site calls PC-ABS thermoplastic “the type of material used in toys that are safe for babies to chew on.” While I wouldn’t recommend chewing on it, it seems to tolerate my negligent ownership habits, like being tossed casually into a drawer or flung across the room when I shake the sheets trying to find it.

The Salsa is super low maintenance; it’s washable with soap and water in the sink, or with basically any toy cleaner. It cleans very easily; there’s just no texture for anything to get stuck in or to. You can wipe it with alcohol, but don't boil it. I wouldn’t put it in the dishwasher either.

If I were sharing it or otherwise wanted to make sure it stayed super clean, I’d throw the entire vibrator into a condom (the less lubricated on the inside, the better) and tie it closed at the end. It’d be easy to find the button, and it doesn’t have edges that could snag on a condom. Then just untie or break the condom to get the Salsa out.

We-Vibe recommends using water-based lubricant. If silicone lube is a must-have for you, it might be worth contacting the company to ask about it, because theoretically, the Salsa should be able to handle any kind of lube. The We-Vibe website also mentions whipped cream, chocolate, and liqueurs. Given the Salsa’s power, that just gives me images of food spattering all over the place--but regardless, there you have it, if you want it.

Although the Salsa is fully waterproof, the charger is not, so don’t get that near water.

The Salsa comes with a white satin storage bag, which includes has plenty of room for the Salsa and its charger (in the picture above, the bag is folded in half). The bag is a little stiff, maybe because it’s two layers thick and shiny on the inside and the outside, which is nice. I'm going to try washing it to see if that softens it. I think that would be a great place to store it, though admittedly, mine is usually tossed loose into my nightstand next to my lip balm.
    • Easy to clean
    • Easy to store

Packaging

I love gorgeous packaging, but I’m also conflicted because sometimes it seems like companies use ten pounds of materials to package even the tiniest sex toy. I also have space issues, so no matter how fabulous a box is, I prefer pouches when they're appropriate. So my ideal packaging includes a very discreet outer layer and very little else. BUT I want to have a storage bag included. Given my preferences, the Salsa’s packaging is great. The box is elegant--it shows the Salsa on it, but it’s subtle.

Salsa Packaging
Back of Box

If for whatever reason you don't like the bag, you could potentially store the Salsa and its accoutrements in its original box, though the box's slightly pyramidal shape could make that awkward. Here's how I'd do it: use the box upside down and remove the internal packaging. What you'd end up with would look something like this:

Salsa In Box

The enclosed instructions are pretty minimalist: roughly 30 pages, but only 2 pages of instruction per language. But they do provide the basics, including a one-year warranty.

Since it's related to packaging, I thought I'd mention here that the We-Vibe FAQ page says that they “exceed the strictest health and environmental product laws in the world” (they list and describe some on the site) and are a carbon-neutral operation. A major reason I buy rechargeable toys is that I hate how many batteries a couple of orgasms can cost; likewise, it's nice to feel like my sex-toy habit isn't wreaking environmental havoc.
    • Discreet looking packaging
    • Recyclable
    • Would make a nice gift

Personal comments

One of my favorite things about the Salsa is its ability to sub in for regular bullets, including the cheapo ones that come with some toys. As I mention under “experience” below, it’s also powerful enough to provide excellent indirect stimulation when held against toys or body parts. However, that's harder to do with toys that are also firm, like glass dildos. Its power makes the Salsa very rattley against rigid surfaces. I haven’t figured out the perfect solution for this yet, but I think it involves a little buffering with fabric or something rubbery. I’ll try to solve this for my follow-up review.

OK: Salsa vs. Tango?

The two vibrators are absolutely identical with two exceptions, the colors and the tips:

The Salsa comes in black, red, and white.
The Tango comes in purple, pink, and blue.

The Salsa has a symmetrical, “pointed” tip.
The Tango has an asymmetrical, “lipstick” tip.

The motors are clearly identical: when I ran them through the different modes, holding one in each hand, they were utterly in sync. They use the same charger. To me, the differences are almost 100% aesthetic. I don’t find using the Tango’s flat surface noticeably different from the Salsa held in a similar position, or the pinpoint tip of the Salsa noticeably different from the flatter tip of the Tango. When I'm using them, the strength of the vibrations and the similarities in power and texture completely overwhelm the slight differences in shape.

The Tango’s vibrations (and presumably the Salsa’s as well) cause it to rotate along its long axis. This is somewhat noticeable in use, and it was very noticeable when I had the vibrators in my pockets. Practically speaking what that means is that if you’re holding it near its base, the flat/lipstick side may slowly get pivoted around so that it’s not facing the direction you want it to face in. I wondered about that and then decided that if I couldn’t tell which way it was facing, it must not be bothering me that much. The rotation isn't relevant with the Salsa, since it's symmetrical all the way around.

I’ve seen some complaints about the Tango changing in power and type of vibration when pressure is applied. As I said earlier, I find the Salsa to lose some power with pressure, but not a huge amount, and the vibrations haven’t changed for me. I think my Salsa might lose power somewhat less than my Tango, but I haven’t had the wonkiness problems others have with either of them.

Experience

I don’t have the Hitachi or the MiMi, which many people reference as powerhouse vibrators. But the Salsa is way up there for me in terms of power. I don’t really want anything stronger. Sometimes I wish it had a little bit of texture or some squishiness, because the rigidity can be a little unrelenting. But then I just combine it with something softer and get all the benefits of the powerful vibrations.

Here are some of the highlights of my experiences with the Salsa or the Tango (now I’m just combining them):

My partner’s reaction when we were having PIV sex and I applied the Tango to my clit (so, just to be clear, the Tango was not touching him at all): “What the …? Oh, God!!!” ... and then he came, hard, immediately, from the vibrations he was feeling through my body. He doesn’t usually like the feeling of vibrators; he finds them too jarring. But it’s like I found his “on” switch or “tilt!” setting. Cool!

My version of the same reaction, when we used one of them--I can’t remember which--in a random, ineffective vibrator-hole-equipped cock ring we’ve had lying around for years. It made his whole cock vibrate like it was made for it. It was awesome. It made the complaint that people often have about vibrating cock rings--that they don’t actually make contact with the woman’s clit--a total non-issue.

Neither of us had any clue at the time how much we were transmitting the vibrations. I’d expect that degree of vibration to, I dunno, cause horrible jarring sensations in my pelvis or something, but no. It was just great.

Similarly, I was playing with my new Mikey and just pressed the Salsa against the bottom of it. Again with the giant vibrating machine. It was great. Just great.
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Comments
  • roskat
    roskat  
    Sounds amazing!!
  • tortilla
    tortilla  
    thanks- awesome info
  • abbylover
    abbylover  
    thanks
  • Kat and Aaron(aaron)
    Kat and Aaron(aaron)  
    Great review, thank you for sharing.
  • Rod Ronald
    Rod Ronald  
    Nice pics with your review by the way. Thanks for sharing!
  • Lioncub
    Lioncub  
    Thanks for the review
  • lalapetitee
    lalapetitee  
    you did a awesome job with this!
  • deltalima
    deltalima  
    Thanks for sharing
  • spiced
    spiced  
    Thanks for a truly outstanding review! Detail, pics, humor - and excellent writing - it's all here. And this sounds like a great toy.
  • chicmichiw
    chicmichiw  
    Thanks for reviewing! I love my salsa, I'll have to try it in a c-ring sometime
  • Mr. John
    Mr. John  
    Nice review.
Thank you for viewing Salsa – sex toy review page!