Sex toys and products

A Couple’s Guide to Trying a Sex Toy

Published: FEBRUARY 7, 2022 | Updated: APRIL 30, 2024
Communication, education and taking things slow will ensure a safe and sexy time when using sex toys with a partner.

When many of us think about sex toys, our first thought is likely about the solo endeavor of using a sex toy - especially to masturbate. Penis strokers, wand massagers, rabbit vibrators, and even sex machines might come to mind.


For a lot of us, we neatly relegate certain categories of other sex toys into "couples toys": like sex furniture, impact play toys, kinky restraints, cock rings, and couple's vibrators.

But nothing can be further from the truth. No matter how many people a toy can pleasure at once, any sex toy can be a couple's sex toy! There are lots of ways to use a sex toy in the bedroom together - even something as simple as a dildo.

Using sex toys as a couple can provide:

  • Orgasmic pleasure - especially when sex toys can "save the day" when you are dealing with fatigued mouths or fingers.
  • An amazing way to get to know your partner's pleasure zones as you see how those toys affect them.
  • Hands-free, effortless ways to add more sensation during partnered endeavors.
  • A simple way to help close the orgasm gap - and ensure everyone has a great time.
  • Beneficial ways to help extend intercourse - or make it faster.
  • Reduced pain during intercourse (looking at you, OhNuts!)
  • Simulated group sex. You might not be ready for another human being in the bedroom, but a dildo - or a second one - is totally something you'd try!
  • Novelty. Trying something new can be as simple as adding a sex toy!
  • Quickie benefits. Especially for people who might take longer to orgasm, using a sex toy can speed things up - and ensure everyone still has a great time.

See? Using sex toys as a couple is pretty awesome. It gets even more awesome when you consider that those same sex toys can easily become solo/masturbation use toys - so you're effectively getting a gigantic pool of options with one single sex toy.

Read: What Makes a Good Couple's Sex Toy?

But first, let's dispel a few myths that often pop up when getting a sex toy as a couple for the first time.


Myth: It Will Replace Your Partner

Sex toys do one thing - and they usually do it well: they provide sexual pleasure. They don't provide dates, emotional support, physical closeness, romance, snuggles, amazing conversation, friendship, or help with chores around the house. A partnership - whether romantic or otherwise - is about more than just sexual satisfaction.

Especially for a lot of people, though, their value as a partner might be tied up in how well they sexually pleasure their partner - even if they provide all of these other relationship benefits as well. This can be a tough - but necessary - conversation to have - and you might learn some things about yourself.

Sex toys are just that: toys for sex. They don't replace a partner, and they don't replace anyone you care about. They don't replace those intimate moments that you revisit in your memories, and they don't replace that amazing conversation you had over dinner last week. They just, simply, aren't a replacement for a partner. They can satisfy a sexual urge (which, honestly, can help people avoid getting into bad partnerships!), but they don't replace anyone.


If you feel like the only thing you provide to your partner is sexual pleasure (and this isn't something that was previously negotiated), you might consider sitting down with your partner or a therapist for a conversation about it. Sometimes this can be tied to self-confidence, and sometimes this can be tied to a relationship that's under a lot of stress.

Myth: Wanting to Use a Sex Toy Means My Current Sex Life is Unsatisfying

That just isn't the case. There are a whole lot of reasons for wanting to use a sex toy in the bedroom - and once you realize how many different options are out there, I think you'll actually be surprised that you weren't using them sooner!

Some people want to add sex toys into the bedroom for something new. There's nothing wrong with wanting to bond with your partner over a new experience.


Other people might want to add extra sensation in the bedroom without taking away from the intimate, bonding moments they both already have. For example, nipple clamps can easily add sensation to the nipples - but still leave everyone's hands free for touching one another. The same can be said about panty vibrators - or butt plugs.

Yet others request sex toys as to "solve" a potential bedroom hiccup - and make things more pleasurable. If intercourse goes on long enough that one person is sore, using a vibrator to speed things up can actually make both people happier! If intercourse is so short that one person is generally left unsatisfied, adding a toy to slow someone down - or add extra stimulation to the slower partner - can leave both people happier as well!

Read: United We Come: Synchronizing Orgasms


None of this necessarily means that your sex life is unsatisfying; it just means that you may have found the existence of a tool to make your sex life even better.

Do you find delicious, freshly-baked chocolate chip cookies to be less satisfying if you find out that they were mixed by a baking mixer instead of by hand? Or are you thankful that the person wants to make cookies more often now (something they love doing!) because the barrier of 15 minutes of onerous stirring has been removed? Try to think of adding sex toys to the bedroom in the same way.

Myth: It Will Make "Regular" Sex Less Satisfying

Using a sex toy doesn't make any future sex with your partner any less satisfying. I think it's easiest to understand if you think about it like some of your favorite foods. If you love cake, that doesn't make a hot, spicy curry less satisfying, does it? They're just amazing in their own ways. Even if you get on a kick and crave spicy curry for weeks, it doesn't mean that cake isn't as good - it just means you'll probably get on a craving for cake later on.

The same can be said about sexual pleasure, too. Whether it's using a sex toy, enjoying oral sex, enjoying anal sex, or anything else, the entire spectrum of sex pleasure feels different - and that's a good thing! Some days you might be craving one thing, and some days you might be craving another.

Some people, however, may find that sex toys provide reliable orgasms - whereas partnered sex may not. Especially for people who struggle to orgasm in the first place, wand massagers can be an absolute treasure. This doesn't mean that someone finds partnered sex less satisfying; it just means that you now have a whole new tool that can make sure your partner can orgasm more easily when they're struggling - and that's awesome!

Myth: My Partner Will Choose the Sex Toy Over Me

There's nothing about a sex toy that makes someone choose it for sexual fulfillment. While I can't promise you that your partner won't choose to masturbate instead of partnered sex, I can reassure you that it's a choice they could easily make with or without a sex toy.

If you're finding that your partner isn't currently turning down partnered sex for masturbation, I don't think you have much to fear once a sex toy enters the picture.

Step 1: Have an Honest Conversation about Sex Toys

There are a whole lot of preconceived "ideas" that we all have about sex - and sex toys. If you're a penis owner, you might think that toys built for your pleasure are a joke - modeled after the media's portrayal of them. If you're a vulva-owner, you might think that sex toys made for you are only for use within the very private space of your bedroom.

Getting over these drilled-in ideas means you need to have a talk about how you feel about sex toys, how you imagine them fitting into your sex life, and what issues you think might pop up.

A lot of couples are surprised by the hidden jealousy that pops up when they add a sex toy to the bedroom. After all, it wasn't like they added a person. But all the same, some of our hidden beliefs about sex toys can get transferred onto the existence of a sex toy - and change how we feel about it once it's actually in our bedrooms. Having conversations ahead of time can help reduce some of this - or at least put your fears out in the open so that your partner can reassure them.

I also recommend discussing which sex toy will be used. If one (or both!) partners already have a sex toy, it might be tempting to use that sex toy as a new couple's toy. However, especially if that sex toy has been around for a long time (or during past partners), some people may find themselves more comfortable with the idea of purchasing a new one - just for the two of you. Make this part of what you discuss and negotiate.

READ: Meeting Your Partner's Sex Toy

For some people, this conversation might also look like a back-and-forth negotiation. For example, one partner may feel uncomfortable with the idea of a realistic toy in the bedroom right now - but they're willing to try a playfully-colored bright purple sex toy. One person may be really nervous about sex toys, but if it's a toy both of them can share, they're willing to give things a try.

All of this is part of your open communication and negotiation about sex toys - and how they fit into your sex life.

Step 2: What's Your Sex Toy Goal?

Especially if this is your first sex toy, you're going to feel pretty overwhelmed once you open up your favorite sex toy store's website. There are just a lot of options!

One of the easiest ways to narrow down your options is by thinking goal-first while shopping. What are you hoping this sex toy will do for the two of you during sex? What are you hoping this sex toy can "fix" or help with?

For example, if a vulva-owner is having problems reaching orgasm during intercourse, you might look for a clitoral vibrator that can be used during your favorite sex positions. If you're hoping to add some novelty to your sex lives, you might be looking at something more unique like a couple's vibrator or sex furniture. Or maybe you want to give a bit of kink a try in the bedroom, so now you might be looking at electrosex toys. Figuring out what you're hoping to "achieve" with your new sex toy can help point you in the right direction while shopping.

Kinkly Shop also has a sex expert on staff to help you select an amazing toy to meet your goals too. You just have to email them!)

Step 3: Buy Your Sex Toy Together

I'm always surprised by how many couples try to buy a first sex toy for their partner without their partner's input. Especially when it's someone's first toy, they need to have a say in the matter. Not only will their input make it much more likely that they'll enjoy the resulting pleasure, but having a say in their pleasure is a great way to ensure they feel included in the decision.

Plus, buying a sex toy together can be a wonderful chance for foreplay and getting to know your partner. It's like built-in dirty talk. As you browse the pages of sex toys, you can talk about how you'd use each sex toy together - or talk about how amazing those sex toys would make both of you feel. You might find that you end up spending days fantasizing - and then enjoying some hot sex - before you actually end up buying the sex toy in the first place!

There's just a whole lot of erotic potential to be had if you both purchase your sex toy together - and that can just be another benefit to buying a toy together!

Step 4: Go Slow and Communicate

Once you receive your sex toy, I'm pretty sure you're both going to be chomping at the bit to finally give it a try. Don't forget to clean it ahead of time - and spend a bit of non-sexual time reading the instruction manual and familiarizing yourself with how the toy works. I know, I know: reading instruction manuals is boring. But knowing how your toy works will save you frustration later on. If you're getting close to orgasm while using it later, you'll be thankful you know how to turn up the intensity because of your due diligence.

When it's finally time to include your new toy during sex, don't feel like you have to rush things. Consider sliding the sex toy under your pillow and enjoying your "usual" foreplay. Enjoy each other's bodies and get used to the pleasure you normally enjoy. Especially if someone is wary of the toy's presence, this can help reassure you both that sex toys won't get in the way of the enjoyment you both already love.

When you both think it's time, you can pull out the sex toy - and go about using it for pleasure. The exact "way" you'll use your toy will vary based on what the toy is.

If it's a shared couple's vibrator to pleasure both of your bodies (like a Wild Flower Enby 2 or Satisfyer Multifun 3), it might become part of the foreplay itself as you both explore different ways to use it and pleasure one another. If it's a toy for clitoral or penis pleasure (like the Satisfyer Men Wand or LELO Smart Wand Medium), you might consider pulling it out as a part of foreplay to get used to it before its shining moment. If it's a toy designed to be worn during intercourse (like the Rocks-Off Cocktail or the We-Vibe Chorus), you might consider inserting it slightly ahead of intercourse to have it nicely in place by the time you begin.

If you haven't used lube very often during sex before now, this is definitely a great time to explore the amazing benefits that lube can provide. Sex toys materials are different than the feel of skin-on-skin, and using a bit of water-based lube can help keep things feeling slippery and fantastic - especially if you're inserting a toy. I definitely recommend it!

If you've always fallen into a sexual "rhythm" when the both of you are together, adding a sex toy might be a bit of a jarring experience. Most people find that they need to communicate mid-sex about their toy for the best results. That might be as simple as "a bit less intensity please" or a full conversation about how the toy feels best with your body.

Don't be afraid to have these conversations; it doesn't mean that something is wrong with your compatibility or the sex toy. It's just adding a new, unfamiliar tool to the bedroom. You probably have to talk (and read the instructions!) when you get a new coffee maker too. It's the same thing here.

On the bright side, getting comfortable with these types of conversations can help make them easier in the future, too, for communication in and out of the bedroom. It's a win-win!

Read: How Great Sex Toys Help Normalize Pleasure

Step 5: Try New Sexual Activities

There aren't many times in your sex life where you have a built-in excuse to try new activities and add some novelty to your pleasure. Adding a new sex toy just happens to be one of them.

Especially if you're playing with toys to add some novelty and new experiences to the bedroom, don't be afraid to go beyond, simply, adding the toy. If you generally have intercourse in the missionary position, see how the sex toy can work in doggy style or a different sex position. If most of your sexual encounters tend to end in intercourse, see how your new sex toy can work during a make-out session. You might even consider having one person masturbate with the new toy - while the other watches and enjoys!

Not only are you likely to find better ways that the sex toy works for the two of you, but you can also ride these waves of excitement to continually add more "newness" to your sex life - and that's something almost every couple can benefit from!

Step 6: ...But Don't Get Carried Away

Remember those concerns about jealousy from earlier? It's easy to get carried away with your new sex toy. Especially if it provides some amazing sensations, you might want to bring it into the bedroom for every single encounter.

While I'm 100% behind that idea (and almost every one of my sexual encounters includes a sex toy of some kind), I want to caution you against doing that in the early stages of your first sex toy.

Remember: some people can feel jealous of a sex toy. While that jealousy is still something they need to work through (and it's on them to do so), it can exacerbate the problem (and feel like their worst fears are coming true!) if the sex toy becomes a large focus of your sex life after you receive it.

Instead, especially in the early days where you're both riding that "new sex toy" energy, make sure to set the sex toy aside sometimes. Enjoy how your bodies fit together without toys - and make sure your partner feels valued and loved. Whether it's unrealistic or not, some people feel threatened by sex toys, and one of the easiest ways to provide support in getting over that fear is by ensuring they feel valued and loved - even when there's still a sex toy in the bedroom.

Mistress Kay

Mistress Kay has a fondness for all things sexual. With a house that's quickly running out of room for all of her reading and vibrating pleasures, she spends her free time reading, writing, and learning about the sexual universe with her partners. She can be reached at Kinky World.

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