Do you prefer to buy sex toys from online or regular stores and why?

Contributor: Adriana Ravenlust Adriana Ravenlust
I like going int stores and sometimes seeing things in person can be a real help but I much prefer the availability of products online and prices are always cheaper.
Contributor: Alan & Michele Alan & Michele
We'd like to buy locally more because then there's no waiting for the toy to ship and no postage fees, but that very rarely happens for us. There's only one store here within reasonable driving distance, and their selection is generally dismal, so online is a blessing.
Contributor: Domineight Domineight
usually more selection online and better deals online but certain items are really nice to see in person, especially certain kinds of BDSM toys.
Contributor: ToyTimeTim ToyTimeTim
In the past I always was traveling so i could stop at a store and check them out, maybe by something if it looked good. But know i have stopped traveling, moved to a new state and haven't found any stores within 100 miles. So since then I have shopped exclusively online. I have found shopping here is sooo much better due to the reviews and great forums/ advice plus the selection is much better than anything I have seen before, online or at stores!
Contributor: Owl Identified Owl Identified
Originally posted by Miss Cinnamon
I buy online because there's more information and more variety. Also, more time! When I'm in a brick and mortar store, I feel like I'm being pressured to make a purchase, or I'm being a bad customer. I also agree with Victoria that ... more
This is a really good point that I forgot all about (since I mostly shop online now). I'll go look at a product page and reviews for a product literally dozens of times sometimes before I buy it, which you can't really do in a real life store because you get shit from the owners.
Contributor: J's Alley J's Alley
I shop online. If I *must* see an item up close I will go downtown and look (sometimes I buy something...usually a lube or something). The prices and selection are much better online, but every now and then an actual viewing is needed. I also get odd looks when I go in and don't know what I want because I am so specific in my needs. I don't like jelly (and they almost always want to sell me that), and it must be nonporous and a certain size. They look at me like I am fucking nuts.

I always hear "the jelly ones are our best sellers." Well no kidding, they are cheap. I am not looking to spend $10 I will spend $50 on a good toy if it meets my requirements. Plus the employees rarely have actual experience with every single toy as where online I will find someone who has used the toy. Especially here. I know who's opinions are close to mine and I can trust that their review will be accurate.
Contributor: Rockin' Rockin'
Being able to hold/touch a toy is a big plus for me, so I really enjoy going to stores to see what toys actually feel like and how big they are. For vibrators, I can also get a feel for the power and functions. So, I'm one of those people who goes to stores but doesn't buy stuff there, oh well. If they have a good deal, I might buy something, but otherwise I'm an online shopper. Having first hand experience with toys (i.e. holding them, etc.) really helps when people make comparisons in reviews here (this toy is more flexible than the ____ / not as strong as my ____ vibe).
Contributor: sarahbear sarahbear
Most of the stuff I get is online anymore. There aren't a lot of sex toy stores around where I live. Sometimes I'd love to go in and browse, just to get a better idea of the size of things or even have a nice lingerie store where I could try things on first.

Spencer Gifts is getting a larger selection of things to choose from and I've even noticed some nice prices. Most of the stuff I buy now is from Edens though.
Contributor: ToyGeek ToyGeek
As much as I appreciate all the information on this site, I still end up going to the brick & mortar store despite the long drive, because I can pay cash. EF shows up on the credit card statement as a strange looking thing, and my one purchase here was a hassle because of that problem. Fortunately I was buying the Tentacle and managed to pass it off as art (which is pretty much why I chose the Tentacle for a test purchase) but I'm not willing to go through that stress on a regular basis.

My only other online purchase was an even bigger nightmare, because FedEx lost the box and the store called my house. I had to pretend it was a mistake, and that I had ordered computer equipment from a third party seller on amazon, and then I had to buy computer equipment that I didn't actually need through a third party seller on amazon to complete the cover story. So, yeah, I'll choose long drives and higher prices, all while breaking my usual personal policy of always buying a product from the people who educated me about said product, to avoid having that kind of experience ever again.
Contributor: Horny & Holy Horny & Holy
Originally posted by Inga mk
Online stores vs Regular stores - comments on advantages and disadvantages are highly appreciated
Definitely online - for privacy mainly but also in buying online you can do research on the product you'd like to buy and have plenty of time to look!
Contributor: usmcwife99 usmcwife99
I simply support the local small bussniess.....there great ive gone there a while now. Ive meantioned hay I say this product online you dont sell it do you and the next time I went they sold them. I know them well they know me well. They will usally just find some random discount they make up for the returning custmors or let me take another thing of lube or a toy for free.
Contributor: DixieDoo DixieDoo
online for sure. Most selection, and honestly, I like how private it is.
Contributor: P'Gell P'Gell
Online, mostly. We have a couple of Brick and Mortar stores around here, but I can't go into them without My Man. I keep thinking people are looking at me, and that GUY over there, the weird looking one, alone, over by the S&M stuff. No, he's got a wife at home who is totally into it, and she's just shy to come into the store, right? RIGHT? Is he picking up the Great American Challenge Dildo? OMG, is that his white van, with no windows in the parking lot. NO, he has a nice wife at home, and a couple of kids and they are no different than My Man and I. Why is he squicking me out? OMG, is that duct tape in his back pocket? Is he LOOKING at me? Where's My Man, I'll grab his hand and look at the floor, NO, then this guy will think I'm a total he coming over HERE????

See? I judge people who are doing the SAME FUCKING THING I AM. Pathetic.
Contributor: *Keona* *Keona*
I buy online for the privacy and because of the variety. I would be open to going into a store if there was one around worth actually going to. And like others have stated already I like being able to see the reviews for a product and making my decision based off of them before I make a purchase. I doubt many people in the stores would be open to discussing in detail how they enjoy a product, if they've ever used it at all.
Contributor: Midway through Midway through
I mostly buy online. Specifically if I have a type of toy in mind already. However, I've also bought stuff through Pure Romance, and a few toys from a toy store we have near my house. Sadly, I'm not a fan of the toy store because no one there really knows what they're doing. Usually with Pure Romance, the consultants know exactly what they're getting into, and they can give advice on what you might want or how a product works. As for online, you can usually finding rating and reviews so I prefer that much more over irl stores.
Contributor: Penguin Penguin
online mostly bc i live in bumble fuck
Contributor: Cats Meow Cats Meow
I do both. I love going to the store, trying clothes on, feeling the materials, and seeing the true size of things. I just recently went into a store and saw a vibrator I had on my wish list. WAY smaller than I thought it was, so I came home and took it off my list. haha.

However, I like shopping online (esp this site) cause you can learn more about the product, what people think about it, and get a better deal.

Btw if your shy, go with some friends, sometimes it can be fun to laugh at some of the stuff
Contributor: Jessica Elizabeth Jessica Elizabeth
About the only reasons I go into a "real" store is to be able to see the item up close or if I need to help a friend find something and we go in so I can explain things. Otherwise online. Better prices, better quality and reviews.
Contributor: HevansS HevansS
Originally posted by LicentiouslyYours
I prefer online stores because the selection and quality is far superior to what's available in toy stores where I live. It's also more discreet, with better access to discounts and sales, and of course... the thousands of reviews that tell ... more
I second that. Completely.
Contributor: LiftedUp LiftedUp
To echo what most others have said, I shop pretty much exclusively online now. Retail stores are often dirty, dingy, poorly-lit holes-in-the wall, hocking inferior wares at highly-inflated prices (at least around me). Shopping online has major benefits in price, selection, information and reviews, and I don't feel like I need to go shower in gasoline when walking away from my purchase.
Contributor: buzzvibe buzzvibe
I always buy online. The two local brick-and-mortar adult stores are way across town and not in areas that I would choose to go.
Contributor: Red Vinyl Kitty Red Vinyl Kitty
I like online stores, because the ones near me (like many others have said) just don't have the selection that the internet stores have.
Contributor: Alicia Alicia
I like buying online so that I can read reviews first and it's always cheaper online than in the store.
Contributor: PassionQT PassionQT
Originally posted by Victoria
The selection and the prices are definitely better online. And sadly, I have found that many people in the brick and mortar stores do not have in-depth product knowledge, so there's no way to know how well the products might work. The reviews ... more
Ditto! Besides, there isn't a store within 20 miles of my house. The best one in the area is about 50mn away and they are pricey, but they do have a good selection. I'd rather shop here.
Contributor: Envy Envy
To me it depends. I like stores because I can see the item before me and sometimes test them out (to see how strong the vibes are sometimes the clerks have a test model to put batteries in and show off the patterns and such) and see how lubes are first hand.

I also like online due to being discreet, but I do have a bit of remorse with some past purchases I wish I could have seen in person first. Would have saved a bundle of money that way since I went through quite a few toys that just didn't work with me.

It just sucks tho because there's so few stores around here. I've only been to A Touch of Romance, and there's another store I want to check out with a friend but we never have time to sneak over there without my dad knowing.
Contributor: SexyySarah SexyySarah
I like to online because you can read ALL about it before you purchase it and it's also more discreet, plus for me to go to a store I'd have to find a babysitter for my kids, and that's no fun! Though if I know exactly what I want then I'd buy it at the store because I can get if faster, but that's the only reason why!
Contributor: Beth D Beth D
I like online better because I like to over think things to death and I'd feel hurried in a real store. I think the information available online is more detailed than I might get from a person, if I worked up the nerve to ask questions at all. Which I probably wouldn't, because I'm way more shy in person.

And, all the sex toy stores I've been in have seemed super skeazy
Contributor: Yesenia Yesenia
Originally posted by El-Jaro
If I know what I want, I'd get it from EF. If I just want to check stuff out, I'll go to a b&m store so I can see it, touch it, smell it, etc.

I also LOVE to educate the people working at the store. I try not to be an ass about ... more
I agree mostly online but same B&M stuff I have to touch and smell it.
Contributor: Avant-garde Avant-garde
I prefer Online Stores simply because I prefer the selection and browsing method.
Contributor: ScottA ScottA
Occasionally I take a field trip to a good store (the already mentioned one in Seattle), but that's a long way away. On the plus side, they have quality toys (though not as many as an online store) and don't rush you. I've found that they don't come up and ask if you have questions (probably intentionally, to avoid creeping some people out), and the knowledge of the clerk is by necessity limited (and they usually can't just bump your request over to someone who knows more about it like they can do online).

It's nice to be able to touch and feel toys, especially when you're new at it, and harnesses are good to be able to try on (over clothes...) when you're trying to figure out how things are going to work together. Eden's "view actual size" is a big step in the right direction for online, as are the reviews.