So What's that Dildo Made of? Here's a brief history of silicone toys...
Let's look at the original kind of sextoys: dildos. History has it that jade and stone and probably wood and bone have been used as sextoys in the past (and probably still are. Maybe that's where the term "boner" came from). Dildos were and probably still are the most easily accessible toys out there - pretty much anything with a cylindrical shape that can fill a woman's vagina (or, for both sexes, a butthole) is a dildo. Hey, why do kids on the playground insult each other by calling their rivals "You dildo!" ? If they only knew at their tender ages that dildos can make for some hot sex, they'd use a different insult... Some people call these "dongs" also but I think that's an old school name for them so I'll call 'em dildos... where did the name "dong" come from anyway?
Back to sex toys. Dildos have been made with all sorts of things then a rubber material called latex came along. Ah, latex. The material that was once part of every toy is now considered old school. It's kind of expensive to use now and it's sticky and stinky and messy to use so most companies are getting away from using it for their toys. And there's that pesky latex allergy thing that so many health care practitioners are complaining of, probably due to over exposure to the stuff... glad I didn't use too many BandAids as a kid. So not many companies are using it anymore for toys and that's a good thing.
So what ARE they using? Briefly, there's the top o' the line silicone - a non-porous rubber that has no odor and costs a little more but is worth it. And here's a little known factoid about silicone dildos... wanna learn the history of how they became dildos to begin with? Sure
Once upon a time, there was this Jamaican man named Gosnell Duncan, who, due to an unfortunate accident, was unable to copulate with Mrs. Duncan (I'm keeping this story PG in case you want to read it to your kids at bedtime. Or your girlfriend). One night she said to her hubby, "Oh, Gosnell, honey, I wish you could make a dildo so you could fuck my brains out at night." (Whoops, forgot about the kid's bedtime story) "Oh, Gosnell, honey, I wish you could be the man that I married and make love to me like it was our wedding night again."
So what did the enterprising Mr. Duncan do? After months of thinking about this with his other disabled men buddies, he thought of what kind of material was out there in the world that was durable, firm yet flexible, could retain body heat, was waterproof (I suppose Mrs. Duncan might have gotten a little wet in that department), could be made in many colors, and could easily be made without having to travel to Indonesia to get that raw, stinky, latex material. And guess what material that was? Silicone! As in SILICONE BATHTUB SEALANT! Yep, Mr. Duncan went straight to the source who originally formulated the stuff, a little known company called GE - known more for their light bulbs and bringing good things to light. The kind folks at GE started to work with Mr. Duncan with his odd but compassionate request for help and two years later, Mr. Duncan was fabricating real looking dildos out of skin toned silicone which all the men and their lucky wives enjoyed copiously.
So how did these puppies wind up in the hands and snatches of women around the world? Ah! Not an easy answer! Around 1975, Mr. Duncan was reading about a small, feminist sex toy shop in Manhattan (which is also credited with being the FIRST one in the country) called Eve's Garden, founded and owned by Dell Williams. When he saw the ad, Mr. Duncan
thought in his sing-songey Jamaican accent "Owh... I wonder if leeezbions would like dem?" and he got in touch with Ms. Williams and the rest, as they say, is HERSTORY.
And oh, about those other materials for sextoys? I'll let you know about them in future blogs. I gotta go do some product testing. Now where's my lube?