Over at my personal blog, InsatiableDesire.com, I write a series called "No Stupid (Kink) Questions (NSKQ)". I started it a few years ago because every time I stuck my head in a kink forum, I found serious questions asked by newbies and never really answered by more advanced kinksters. I mean, if you are proficient in snark and sarcasm, you can probably read between the lines, but why should you have to? Why should you have to comb through all the people who are more interested in telling you how stupid you are to find the answer to your question? The answer is you shouldn't. And so NSKQ began.

This series is kinda like that, only in this case, the motivation is more about the embarrassment surrounding discussing sex toys.

Question 1:

I found this awesome looking $10 vibrator at the local sex toy shop, so I bought it. I mean, who can pass up a $10 vibrator, right? I got it home, washed it up, and started using it, and it set my vulva and vagina on fire. And not in a good way. What's up with that? Is my vagina defective?

Nope.

Here's the skinny on sex toys:

There's no regulation on what materials can be used to make a sex toy.

That's no joke.

In fact, there are very few laws regulating sex toys, and most of them are related to the sale and ownership of them. In Texas, you could be made to register as a sex offender if convicted of selling "obscene devices".

This means some manufacturers put whatever the hell they want into the toys they produce with no regard to the health and well-being of their customers. And they lie about it. Constantly, and consistently. One company insists they're telling the truth about their materials despite test results from a lab that suggest otherwise.

The problem with this is some of these materials are toxic. They can cause severe allergic reactions, chemical burns, and even cancer.

The motivation, I"ms sure, is rarely evil. I mean, think about it. Why would anyone intentionally kill off their customer base? It's just that manufacturers know not everyone can afford to spend $100+ on a vibrator, so they use cheaper materials to keep the customer's (and, more specifically, their own) cost down. And let's face it. Even people who know that some of the materials used can be toxic still choose to purchase those toys because they're cheap.

My suggestion to you (not that you asked for one, but I'm itching to give some advice) is to toss that toy and get something that is body safe, meaning it will not leach poisons into your body through contact, or cause a reaction of any sort. Some materials that fall into this category are hard plastic, silicone, wood, stainless steel, glass, ceramic, aluminum.

A sex toy that is body safe usually doesn't have an odor to it. If you wet your mouth and touch it to your lips, it won't burn you. When you use it vaginally or anally, it won't cause irritation.

If you can't afford a better sex toy, at the very least, put a condom on it when you use it. But this might not even help you avoid a reaction. There are some reports of chemical reactions even with condoms. The best thing to do is put aside money until you can afford something safer. I know that sounds silly, but we're talking cancer, here, Y'all. Cancer. Fuck cancer. Buy safe sex toys.

Some articles on toxic sex toys that you should read: