Mic Magazine Highlights the Evolution of Sex Toys

Mic Magazine Highlights the Evolution of Sex Toys

LOS ANGELES — In a recent article for Mic online magazine, author Tracey Anne Duncan highlights the evolution of sex toys, predominantly over the past century, and looks ahead at the trends coming out of the ever-growing industry as we move into a new decade. 

In "How Sex Toys Finally Evolved Beyond the Big Fake Penis," Duncan throws it back to the beginning of time, noting that while sex toys "have been around since humans starting making tools," the early ones, up until recently, have been modeled from dicks. 

Circa late-1800s, vibrators hit the market, although not quite in the form we're accustomed to now. A dubious history surrounds the introduction of vibrating machines, the clearest evidence suggesting that their properties as "sex toys" and orgasm aides were not immediately positioned as the devices' primary use, but rather discretely hinted at in advertisements. 

"A lot of sex toys mimic human genitalia," continues Duncan, highlighting Clone-A-Willy's home penis-molding kit and its sister Clone-A-Pussy labia replicator as examples of the age-old trend.

While the kits offer users a novel way to build their own dildo or masturbator — a higher-end, certified body-safe version of the age old DIY option — some of the industry's most notable advancements in recent years have included a push towards the creation and growing popularity of gender-neutral toys. 

"Our anatomy hasn’t changed much since ancient times, but our ideas have," Duncan teases. Indeed, while penises and vaginas have remained largely the same since the history of sex toys began being recorded at least, our ideas and understandings of sex, sexuality, gender and pleasure have evolved immeasurably. 

Using Wildflower's Enby as an example, Duncan noted, "sex toys are material proof of the ways attitudes about sex and gender change. A lot of times, sex toys seem to be ahead of the social curve in terms of accepting sexual and gender minorities."

Indeed, Emojibator's Maddie Allard similarly highlights the pivot away from highly gendered toys — bye-bye hot-pink dildos! — in favor of products and lines that champion inclusive messaging and branding. 

Aside from being at the forefront of progressive social movements, the adult industry often also finds itself at the cutting edge of tech. 

Duncan gives a nod to Lovehoney, who crowdsources for new designs with their Design a Sex Toy contest, the most notable winner being the Sqweel oral sex wheel, which heralded a wave of previously unknown human tongue-like stimulators. 

On an even more advanced level, companies like Lora Dicarlo have developed patented technology that might have applications outside of sextech, and Lovenese, who is changing the game when it comes to interconnectivity and digital communication. 

As we press forward into the new year, our technology and the way we understand pleasure on a mental, emotional and physical level continues to develop and evolve, informed by new research and new voices joining the conversation. 

To read the full article, click here

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