In 2012, when the Fifty Shades trilogy was released, it caught a lot of sex toy and lingerie manufacturers and retailers by surprise. With the release of the movie in February, many of them are now ramping up their production and inventories with some luxurious and glamorous sex toys, bondage gear, lingerie and sensual care products. It's a good opportunity to get high quality products at affordable prices. Some of them are available now and some will be coming to sex toy shops this fall and through the Valentine’s Day season.
Dress for Sexcess
Escanté, which already makes many glamorous lingerie styles at affordable prices, recently introduced its Inner Goddess Collection.
"The Inner Goddess Collection was created due to women’s response to the book Fifty Shades of Grey," says Rachael Caswell, Escanté's creative director. "When that book came out there was a huge interest in the fetish world. We took a good look at our line and realized we should expand on the few fetish items we had been carrying. Once we realized a movie was being produced, we then decided to plan our new lines debut around the premiere of the movie trailer."
Escanté’s Inner Goddess Collection features eight new edgy BDSM looks in faux leather and snakeskin, with lace and fishnet detailing. Some come with accessories like silver ties, restraints and paddles.
"The response we have received so far has been amazing and we are already placing re-orders to our manufacturer for all styles," Caswell says. "We are hoping that this collection not only carries us through the Fifty Shades of Grey phenomenon, but throughout the years. We are thinking very long term with this collection."
Dreamgirl has carried fetish-inspired lingerie for several years, but this year’s new pieces feature more gold chain details and an emphasis on coordinating cuffs, as well as collar and leash sets. Its newer kink wear features coated microfibers that give off a leathery appearance and faux vinyl that allows for a better fit, with stretch. Dreamgirl director of marketing Lar Hosepian wouldn’t reveal any specific spoilers to what Dreamgirl will be debuting this fall, but did confirm that they will be releasing Fifty Shades-inspired wear: "In our fetish segment we project to do about half a million dollars in business by year end. While this category accounts for 3% of our total lingerie business, it is indeed a growing segment for us. We are launching new fetish Fifty Shades of Grey-inspired styles for the 2015-2016 seasons in this fall, and it will feature some great soft fetish and dungeon play that really highlights the growing trend of BDSM."
Softer Shades of Seduction
Bluebella, which snagged a licensing agreement with author E.L. James for its Fifty Shades of Grey sex toy and bondage gear line in 2012, recently added lingerie and sensual care products. The new Fifty Shades of Grey lingerie features elegant and feminine garments like a chiffon camisole and shorts set with coordinating mask as well as panties, as well as black lace corset-back panties and a red satin bra and panty set. The sensual care collection products - bath and massage oils, pleasure gel, after-spanking cream, massage candles and even condoms - come in sleek black, grey and chrome packages.
"We introduced the new sensual care and lingerie products because our customers wanted them," says Bluebella spokesperson Jules Stenson. "We are so excited about the movie because we believe it will introduce BDSM to a whole new audience who aren't big readers - men in particular but also couples who go and see the movie together."
Bijoux Indiscrets has been creating and selling luxurious pleasure products long before Christian Grey and Anastasia Steele were even a glimmer in E.L. James’ eye.
"Collars like our Desir Metallique collar can be used for play in the bedroom or as a sophisticated accessory for a romantic dinner," Bijoux Indiscrets designer Elsa Viegas says. "Our pearl bracelets, Plaisir Nacré, contain a secret. Attach the chain and you have a pair of very glamourous handcuffs. Remove it and no one will suspect it."
Viegas says that Bijoux Indiscrets has new items slated for release in October, including the company’s first vibrator.
Booty Parlor is also catering to its BDSM-curious customers with its new Good Girl/Bad Girl blindfold, cuffs, feather whippers and spankers. They’re sophisticated and dark yet have a feminine touch of light pink.
"We created the Good Girl/Bad Girl collection to offer a woman a soft and accessible entry point into the racier side of sex," says Booty Parlor spokesperson Dana Myers. "We knew she wanted to play but did not want to push the boundaries of her relationship too far."
Even though Booty Parlor’s focus is on seductive and romantic gift products, Myers says that sales have increased 40% since the beginning of the Fifty Shades of Grey craze.
Tie Me, Spank Me, Pretty Please
Like Booty Parlor, Julie Stewart, president of Sportsheets, says her company has also seen a 40% increase in business since the Fifty Shades of Grey books came out. She expects sales to rocket even higher with the movie and their two new product lines, Edge and Plus.
Unlike most of Sportsheets' more utilitarian, safe and adaptable BDSM and bondage gear, its Edge BDSM gear is made of vegan and cowhide leather. While the line’s heavy-duty white stitching detailing and polished metal clasps don’t say glamorous, the restraints and corporal gear are definitely high class and high-quality accessories, meant for getting down to business.
"This is an exciting and invigorating endeavor for Sportsheets as entering the high-level leather category has always been part of our plan," Stewart says.
Where Sportsheets is making the biggest splash, however, is with the debut of its "Plus" strap-on line made for plus-size women. The panty style strap-ons aren’t just comfortable and adaptive for women sized 12-30, but come in plushy satin and lace fabrics. Some even come in corset-back styles.
"Each item was tested by women who wear sizes 20-28 and their feedback was excellent," Stewart says. "Their essential responses and suggestions played an important role in the production process and there are many more items already in the pipeline as a result."
Pipedream is also expanding their product line. Some of the new products in its Fetish Fantasy Gold pipeline include an open mouth gag, vibrating micro G-string panties, two styles of nipple clamps, vibrating strap-ons, a Wartenberg wheel and furry handcuffs, all with gold tone finishes. They also recently introduced 25 new products to their Fetish Fantasy Limited Edition line, which includes satin wrist ruffles and ankle cuffs.
California Exotics is also taking the red carpet approach to the Fifty Shades of Grey movie release with its Scandal BDSM gear and bondage line. Playing on the public's desire to get tied up in the Fifty Shades craze, the company has released a collection including cuffs and a spreader bar, as well as garments made with red and black brocade fabric.
"With the Fifty Shades of Grey movie, I think the "Fifty Shades" effect will continue for some time to come," says sex blogger and sex toy reviewer Cara Sutra, "In my opinion, there is bound (pun intended) to be another peak in bondage sex toys and related sales around the time of the film's release, and carrying through the months that follow."
(photo credits to Bijous, Pipedream and Bluebella)