SEX AND TECHNOLOGY
Thrusting Vibrators: How Close Are They to the Real Thing?
Published: MARCH 16, 2023
While thrusting vibrators won't replace the sensations of full-thrust intercourse, if you love the sensation of any movement at your entrance or love constant movement near your innermost spots, a thruster might be right for you.
If you've been around any sex toy stores or advertisements in the last five years, you've probably seen the new toy "holy grail": the thrusting vibrator. Featuring relatively new, innovative technology, companies have been all over each other to release the best -- and fastest -- thrusting toy to complement your previously manual play sessions.
A toy that....moves itself? Is that even possible?
In an industry that famously overpromises and under-delivers, is it actually possible that a sex toy can do all of the work for you -- and entirely replace your favorite dildo that gives you hand cramps during marathon sessions?
READ: Tips for Having Awesome - and Pain-Free - Hand Sex.
What is a Thrusting Vibrator?
Sex machines are awesome -- but sex machines are expensive and pretty freakin' big. So, thrusting vibrators attempt to take the magic of an automated thrusting machine and bring it into a hand-held version at a fraction of the cost.
While "thrusting vibrator" may lead you to mental pictures of phallic objects, the thrusting vibrator's popularity has led to a renaissance of thrusting sex toys. You can even find the same type of technology in anal plugs and bullet vibrators!
Your typical thrusting toy accomplishes this movement in one of two ways:
1. The Moving Shaft
If you see folds in the material near the tip (like in the gif above!), your potential thrusting vibrator probably uses this method. For this design, the toy's tip literally raises up and shrinks down for each thrust. There is a motor inside the toy that makes the tip expand and contract.
Think of it like a much-more-powerful version of those motorized holiday decorations you've seen that move side-to-side or wave at you.
Because the movement is literally built into the toy design, thrusting vibrators with moving shafts usually have a wider range of motion than their moving-ball counterparts. However, they are also more prone to jamming -- especially if any rings of musculature are positioned on top of the expanding area.
2. The Moving Ball
Making a distinct tip that separates and pulls together from the rest of the shaft is expensive -- and complicated!
Instead, the "moving ball" alternative goes a different route. In this type of thrusting vibrator, your sex toy has a hollow, long, interior chamber inside it built to the exact specifications of a heavy ball that lives inside this chamber.
XR Thump-It! Thumping Plug.
At rest, because of gravity, the ball's weight simply rests at the bottom of the toy. However, there's a motor at the bottom of this hollow chamber that forcefully shoves the ball to the top. When it does that, because the ball is so heavy, it forces the toy to move along with it, providing a thrusting motion.
Honestly, it's pretty neat -- and until you see it in action, you might not think it would do much, but the XR Brands Thump-It uses this exact method:
How to Use a Thrusting Vibrator
If you've never tried a thrusting vibrator before, a good place to start may be to take advantage of the walls and pillows you already have in your home. Simply use those parts of your home to provide a firm, unmoving surface to keep the thrusting sex toy pushed snugly into your body.
To use a pillow, slide the thrusting vibrator into your body. Then take your pillow, squish it up into a ball, press it up between your legs and hold it in place with your thighs. It may take a bit of trial-and-error to find the right spot, but once the base of the sex toy is met with resistance from the pillow, you've found the right spot. It should help keep the thruster from sliding out!
You can also take the same approach with a wall or piece of furniture. Position your body where the base of the toy makes contact with the wall or furniture once it's fully inserted. (This can be a serious flexibility challenge!) Now the object will act as a stopping point for the vibrator, "holding it" for you while the thrusting toy stays snugly within your body.
READ: Why You Need to Add a Thruster to Your Sex Toy Collection.
Do Thrusting Vibrators Actually Work?
Let me get this out of the way first:
Literally none of these toys will replace the sensations of full-thrust intercourse.
I don't want you to feel misled. Some manufacturers have spent marketing dollars trying to convince you that thrusting vibrators are this magical alternative that replaces a full-thrusting partner or hand-held dildo.
They don't. They simply don't have the range of motion.
If you take a look at some of these toys, they're offering movements in the one-inch (or less) range. Considering most full-length thrusts are at least a couple of inches in length, these toys really don't replace that sensation.
However, thrusting vibrators offer a few benefits other options don't. These include:
- No Muscle Fatigue. There's a minimal amount of human strength required here. Simply hold the thrusting vibrator in place and go to town. You don't have to worry about a cardio-exhausted partner or hand cramps.
- Multiple Stimulation Options. If you can build more on your thrusting vibrator, why not? Many thrusting options are also equipped with other types of stimulation -- like added texture, clitoral vibrations, perineum stroking and more.
- Added Vibrations. Your partner or your standard dildo doesn't vibrate. Most thrusting vibrators offer vibrations in addition to the thrusting sensations.
- Targeted Designs. Many thrusting vibrators are specifically crafted to hit a specific spot. If that's the g-spot or the p-spot, it might be located within a deep curve inside your body. If that's the case, the angle at which you need to hold your favorite dildo can be uncomfortable (or impossible). With a thrusting vibrator, you simply insert it and it will do all of the awkward reaching for you while you get to hold it in a neutral position.
How Do Thrusting Vibrators Compare to Sex Machines?
Sex machines cost a pretty penny, but they offer two big benefits over thrusting vibrators:
- Hands-free functionality.
- Full-length thrusting.
See, most people forget that thrusting vibrators still need to be held. While the vibrator does the thrusting for you, it still needs to be kept in place by a human with a semi-stable hand. Depending on your grip strength and your need for thrusting power, you might actually need to activate your forearm muscles and hand to keep the thrusting vibrator in place to hit the spots you want it.