Carly S. Serves Up NYC-Style Sex Education, Toy Expertise

Carly S. Serves Up NYC-Style Sex Education, Toy Expertise

New Yorkers have a reputation for not f-ing around, and pleasure advocate Carly S. brings that no-holds-barred NYC attitude to her unabashed brand of sex education.

An adult industry freelancer-of-all-trades, Carly is brashly unafraid to throw the realities of sexuality straight into your face. She is the founding blogger of, where she reviews sex toys and muses on modern sexual health. Her website abounds with posts that destigmatize and decolonize sexual identity and pleasure politics, like “Everything You Need to Know About Double Penetration” and “Mixed Race Folks Aren’t Here for You to Fetishize.”

I was lucky enough to grow up without shame being put onto sex and pleasure, so I’ve always been comfortable talking about it.

With a long list of talents, Carly is hard to describe in a nutshell, but she has titled herself a Queen of Wands, a pleasure educator, a porn star and model. She has managed and worked as a featured educator at some of New York City’s most popular sex toy stores, and she’s taught at pleasure-centric events like Sex Expo, Exxxotica, and Cycles and Sex. Last but far from least, she’s also a “bad bitch from the Bronx” who received’s Top BIPOC Blog accolade, one of the company’s yearly Top 100 Sex Blogging Superheroes awards.

“I was lucky enough to grow up without shame being put onto sex and pleasure, so I’ve always been comfortable talking about it and I became the friend to go to with questions,” says Carly.

It also doesn’t hurt that, as Carly explains, she’s simply always been interested in sex toys.

“When I was in college, I was the president of the Queer Student Union and ran pleasure-based workshops, so when a position opened up at the Pleasure Chest, I immediately applied and found out I was really good at selling sex toys and teaching workshops, so I grew my career from there,” she recalls of her early days in the trade.

Carly climbed the ranks and soon became a supervisor at her local Pleasure Chest store, then helped to set up a new branch of Romantic Depot in the Bronx that would become the largest sex toy store in New York City. Carly managed Romantic Depot’s Bronx location for a few years before eventually making her way back to the Pleasure Chest to manage the company’s original West Village location.

When the pandemic hit, Carly pivoted to providing sexuality content on her own terms as a social media manager, copy writer and product curator.

“It’s been really rewarding getting to put my work forward in a way I didn’t get to when I was managing someone else’s store,” says Carly.

When she isn’t penning her next hot take on why you should pay for your porn or appearing on the “Sex with Dr. Jess” podcast to advise listeners on talking dirty, Carly lends her retail expertise to Spectrum Boutique. As one of founder Zoë Ligon’s right-hand sexperts, Carly acts as Spectrum’s product manager and customer service manager. She curates and writes copy for new products, answers customer emails, helps consumers choose products and runs a weekly, Q&A-style video series for the Spectrum Boutique Instagram page.

Carly’s speaking engagements schedule has recently included workshops at Passional Boutique in Philadelphia and at the City University of New York. She’s aiming to add more in-person educational events to her calendar this year. Her extensive adult retail and public speaking experience makes her the perfect adviser to industry companies seeking a modern approach to the B2C market.

“Listen to your customer base and be flexible,” says Carly. “I try to judge a product as objectively as possible and I don’t think that’s always the case for some retailers. Ask yourself, ‘Will this be useful or pleasurable to someone?’ ‘Is it good quality?’ I think sometimes people can assume what others want or think they know best but at the end of the day all you can do is stock good options and show people what’s out there.”

Carly tells XBIZ that she hopes someday to design her own sex toy. Though her debut pleasure product has yet to be revealed, she hints that it might involve a simple yet underrated design aspect that makes sex toys more accessible.

“In general, I think sex toys need more handles,” says Carly. “I think the folks designing them tend to forget that people using them might have a variety of reasons to need a handle. Anything from arthritis to being pregnant or plus size, or even mobility issues, but also it just makes it easier to hold, especially if your hands are full of lube!

“I have some ideas I’d love to collaborate with brands on, so if anyone wants to work with me, please reach out,” she adds.

Similarly, Carly believes all toy makers and marketers could benefit from a more neutral-yet-creative approach that doesn’t put consumers’ identities in — or on — a box.

“Don’t limit your product with its packaging,” she advises. “Think of all the ways a toy can be used and try and make that clear on the box. Folks are looking for ideas for use and versatility, and it’s just more confusing when there might be a product that’s perfect for someone — but it’s labeled ‘For Men’ and now they don’t feel comfortable purchasing it.”

In addition to accessibility and inclusivity, Carly adores another semi-recent innovation that’s gained popularity over the last few years.

“I’m excited to see where the humping toys are going,” she tells XBIZ. “I’m glad makers are realizing that there are many ways to play outside of penetration and offering more options outside of standard vibration.”

Carly’s keen eye for innovation and sustainable retail trends may reveal a lot about the potential future of the pleasure industry. Her favorite brands include Je Joue and Evolved in the large-scale sector, and Uberrime, Pris Toys and Velvet Alley in the indie sector, all of whom focus on quality, inclusivity and consumer feedback.

Carly believes that, in the end, the adult industry’s ability to bend with the times and tech will allow pleasure brands to truly become forces for change, even outside of our industry bubble.

“I think as toys become more mainstream and accessible, there are going to be a lot more opportunities to branch out in ways we wouldn’t have previously thought,” she muses in conclusion. “I recently taught a class at a cannabis expo and being flexible to go to events outside of the sexuality space is going to be the way we keep the momentum going.

“Pleasure is connected to so many things,” says Carly S. “It’s just a matter of finding where your business best connects with other industries.”

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