The body of the Wahl is made of a slick, smooth basic plastic in a warm gray. The plastic power slider is slightly rougher, giving fingers something to grip against. The attachments are made of PVC. (on a side note, they actually printed "PVC" into the back of each and every attachment. Talk about useful!) The material is hard, with little to no give to it. The thinner attachments can be bent if enough pressure is applied, but they resist strongly and spring back into shape as soon as the pressure is gone. They are not as hard as plastic, glass, or metal, but this form of PVS is one of the hardest "soft" materials.
The plastic had no odor, but the attachments had a slight smell straight out of the box. Though faint, it didn't appear to lessen after a few washings. It is slightly reminiscent of the way the old Mr. Potato Head toys smelled.
The seven attachments each have a very distinct texture, which are stimulating I very different ways. As they were designed for full-body massage, some are more or less suited to perverting for sexual use. For example, the nubby scalp attachment may be too intensely complex for clitoral use, while the facial attachment is awkward to place, and the "spot application" attachment can be downright bruising if caution is not taken. There is a definite learning curve in figuring out which attachments work best for perverting this massager for sexual use. Beginners may find this to be overwhelming.
This is, without a doubt, the most discreet toy in my collection. This is the kind of toy you could leave out on your desk at work without anyone batting an eye (though using it there might get you ejected from cubicle-land for being noisy), or could have it sitting on the counter while you have your religious leader of choice over for dinner. It's a body massager known to be one of the better models for soothing aches and pains. Enough people know about the Hitachi's off label usage that it might get a raised eyebrow, but the not the Wahl.
That said, the Wahl is not easily hidden. At almost 8" long, and 3" wide sans attachments, it's a bulky toy. It will leave a definite bump in your pillow if you hide it under there, and it would take an industrial-sized purse to hide this toy discretely at the bottom. Its size also makes it difficult to use in many positions for partner sex.
It is much quieter than its fellow outlet-powered massagers: while blankets won't muffle the Wahl, you won't hear it through a closed door. The one exception is that if you push on an attachment too hard at just the wrong angle, the shaft of the attachment will rattle against the plastic casing, which is louder than the actual motor.
The handle of the Wahl is designed to be easy to hold in either hand in multiple positions. The most comfortable are variations of gripping the thin shaft, and using the finger-wells on the head for a better angle in some positions. At the edge of the head, a vibrating shaft is set into the plastic. The attachments are slid onto this shaft, where they sit firmly until removed.
Because it must be plugged into the wall for power, the Wahl travels well as long as you have the room to spare. Its 9-foot cord is long enough to give you lots of freedom of movement. It won't turn on in your luggage, you can wave it around without shape at a baggage inspection, and an unpressurized, unheated baggage compartment on a plane followed by rough handling of your suitcase won't phase this tank of a toy. That said, this near-indestructibility comes with the price of a rather heavy toy.
The attachments are widely varied and well designed:
The "general body" attachment is a wide-rimmed cup suitable for most of the body. It gives strong, though rather diffuse stimulation in a ring. Those who like strong vibrations, but find that they can't deal with a vibrator directly touching their clitoris or nipples, will find this attachment well suited to their needs.
The wide, flat "facial attachment" is the most diffuse, even on high. While it can be used on the face, it also works well on testicles and breasts.
The "muscle kneading" attachment, which looks like stairs, works well with the clitoris held between its ridges, or rocked against the butt or inner thighs. It also makes for a divine foot massage, whether or not you find those erotic.
The "knuckle joint" attachment, a triangular prism, is the simplest shape. The edges and point can give a more concentrated sensation, while sides offer a smooth, flat surface with vibrations evenly distributed cross it. The ridge works well for teasing the vulva. Bizarre as it seems, it is actually quite effective for joint massage, too.
The "deep muscle" attachment is probably the best suited for basic clitoral stimulation for most people. The finger-like center tip gives pinpoint stimulation, while the rings around it keep it from getting too bruisingly strong. Condom-clad, it also works well for teasing the perineum or anal opening.
The "spot application" attachment gives the most intensely pinpoint stimulation, but be warned: on high, it can actually bruise areas that aren't well-padded. Handled with care, it is very, very intense, and can be incredibly pleasurable. On high, it begins to feel almost more like a high speed tapping or pounding than vibration. Like the deep muscle attachment, in a condom it can be used to tease around the anus, though none of these attachments should ever be inserted anally.
The scalp attachment, a disk of 3 rings of hard, pointy nubs, is the most intimidating attachment to contemplate using on one's genitalia. It is definitely an acquired taste, and intensely different from all of the other attachments. Outside the genital region, it works well for tantalizing well-padded areas like the thighs, butt, belly, and breasts, as it seems to grab and shake the tissue. However, it's best application it it's intended use: once you use this odd duck on your scalp, you may not want to waste it anywhere else. Even for masturbation. Seriously.
The controls of the Wahl are well marked and easy to use. The blue, slightly rough plastic slider has a ridge in the center that helps you slide it with a click between "0-OFF", "I-LOW", and "II-HIGH" If you need to turn it off in a hurry, the slider can be quickly slid to off without stopping, which is as good as having a dedicated "off" switch.
The vibrations are almost completely centered in the attachments, though some can be felt in the handle. Even on high, they aren't strong enough to numb the hands very fast. When the toy is turned on and set on a bed, both settings are audible across a room, but won't be heard through a closed door. Surprisingly, the lower setting is often more likely to be heard, because it is higher in pitch than the stronger setting (if you're curious, they are in fact an octave apart). Wile the settings are described as "low" and "high", the Wahl's low is stronger than the highest setting on average 2-3 AA powered vibrators.
The settings might be better described as "light speed" and "ludicrous speed". While the low speed is a very strong, deep vibration, the high has a different quality altogether. Depending on the attachment used, it almost seems to tap, to pound, or to shake. It's a sensation found in few other vibrators, and can be deeply satisfying if you can bear the intensity.
As the Wahl is not a water resistant vibrator, care must be taken when cleaning it. Be careful not to get the handle more than a bit damp in use or during cleaning, because nothing will prevent fluids from getting inside and shorting it out. Both the handle and the attachments can be cleaned with soap and water or with toy cleaners, or with a little rubbing alcohol. The attachments can be removed, and submerged for washing. Because of the deep grooves some of them have, they can be hard to clean, so watch out for gunk getting trapped. The PVC attachments are porous, so don't share them without covering with a condom.
The plastic and PVC of the Wahl are compatible with any kind of lube. No special care needs to be taken with storing it, but the little plastic bag the attachments come in is very useful for keeping them from getting lost. You shouldn't store the attachments on the shaft of the Wahl, as this may stretch out the PVC shafts and make them fit too loosely.
This toy is strong. Really, really strong. The first time I turned it on, I was almost too scared to use it, and I like powerful toys. Because the tips are much smaller than the ball-heads of other massagers, its power is always very concentrated. It's definitely stronger than my Ideal, and significantly quieter. For the first day, my friends and I sat around giving each other innocent massages with the Wahl, because I wasn't sure I was up to using it. When I finally did, I was hooked.
A word from experience: you probably shouldn't use the spot application tip for your first try with this toy, or for rough doggie-style sex. I had some of the strongest orgasms I've had in a long time, but it's hard to keep on target, and sometimes I'm too bruised to masturbate for a few hours after if we get too enthusiastic. But oh, is it worth it! The triangle and deep muscle attachments are my current favorites, but they all get used on a regular basis.