Category Archives: Reviews

Review: LELO Mona Wave

pennysblog_monas1

For many sex toy aficionados, the LELO Mona Wave was one of the most anticipated toys this year. Almost everyone I know loves the regular Mona vibrator, so a new Mona with added “come hither,” finger-like motion that comes in beautiful, midnight blue…it must be a miracle, right?

Not exactly. If I had to sum up Mona Wave in a word it would be: disappointing. I don’t hate it and have (somewhat) enjoyed using it, but it could use some major improvements.

In case you haven’t heard of the original Mona, it’s a sleek, silicone, rechargeable vibrator designed for g-spot stimulation. I actually prefer mine for clitoral stimulation, especially combined with dildos because it’s fairy strong, with a wide range of vibration and an easy to grip handle. It’s not the holy grail of g-spot toys for me, but it is for many others. It’s widely loved, so much so that people have made shrines to it, they have back up Monas, and most sex bloggers sing its praises.

The new Mona Wave looks very similar to original Mona. It features the same silky smooth silicone and overall design– the main difference is its control panel, which is made of silicone (instead of hard plastic), with built in, seamless buttons that don’t light up (as opposed to regular Mona’s, which do.) And obviously, it has motion. Here’s a quick overview of its functions:

1- Motion, with vibration

2- Slower motion, with waves of vibration (Useless)

3- Motion, with waves of vibration (My favorite)

4- Motion, quick pulsing vibration

5- Motion, erratic pulsing/waving vibration

6- Motion, no vibration

7- Steady vibration

8- Waves of vibration

9- Quick pulsing vibration

10- Erratic pulsing/waving vibration

pennysblog_monas2I am often in the mood for lazy orgasms (that’s why I still love my Hitachi), so I thought I’d love that the Mona Wave could move around inside of me by itself. It took me quite a bit of finagling it around to see what worked, but after a while, I found the way it works best for me–holding onto it firmly, pushing the handle down, so its arm moves up against my g-spot. Holding it any other way just doesn’t give my g-spot enough pressure or do much for me. Since I have to grip it firmly to take advantage of its motion, it’s somewhat awkward for me to hold. And I’ve tried thrusting with it, but the feeling of the motion is lost when I do, which kind of defeats the purpose of a moving vibrator.

At first, Mona Wave’s arm feels good–sort of like a finger. I start to get that need to squirt g-spot feeling with minimal effort…but then I want need more. If I was using a dildo, this is the time when I’d start thrusting harder and faster. If I was with a partner, they’d move faster, add another finger, something to up the intensity.

The problem with Mona Wave is that its movement is not adjustable, nor is its speed. It only moves 30 degrees. It will not go any faster. And when I get tired of the first mode (movement+vibration) and click through to the second function to try something else, it actually gets slower, which pisses me off every time. I do enjoy the third function’s waving vibration+movement, but the movement still isn’t what I’d like it to be. I can orgasm from it, but I rarely squirt. And when I do, it’s usually the Tiniest Squirt Ever. It just doesn’t have the intensity I need to leave my legs shaking and my Throe soaked.

The Mona Wave is touted as offering a come hither motion for “finger-like” g-spot stimulation. When I picture “finger-like motion,” I picture something curling up inside of me, tugging on my g-spot, stroking it, moving faster when needed. I don’t picture a finger that only moves 30 degrees and stays at the same damn speed the whole time. When I first got the Mona Wave, I sent a video of it to my best friend. “That’s it? That is so not a come hither motion” was her reaction. Yep–that pretty much sums it up.

When I use Mona Wave clitorally, all I can think is robot finger. Since I can hold Mona Wave and allow it to stroke my clit, it does feel similar to a finger touching me, which is pretty damn cool–a robot finger, granted, because the movement is metronomical, but still cool. Since its pace is predictable, it takes me a long time to come, but when I finally do after all of the build up, it feels pretty explosive. I still think it would benefit from more variance in speed and movement clitorally though, just as it would for g-spot stimulation.

There’s one major problem with the Mona Wave’s motion though, y’all, no matter how you’re using it: the weird noise. The original Mona isn’t exactly silent, but at least I can easily tune out its low hum of vibration. I cannot tune out Mona Wave’s annoying sound. It’s so obnoxious that Jake could hear it from the other room, where he was sawing wood. No joke. Not even wearing headphones and listening to porn will drown it out. It is incredibly distracting and the biggest deterrent to me wanting to use it.

Vibration wise, Mona Wave feels slightly less powerful at full power than regular Mona, which is also a shame. Otherwise, it’s similar, with the same moderately rumbly vibration at its lower settings and buzzier vibrations at its stronger levels. It also has less vibration functions, 4 vs Mona’s 10.

Using the Mona Wave’s control panel is a little different from Mona–instead of pressing the +/- buttons to start and adjust the vibration and then the ▲/▼ buttons to cycle through the functions, you simply click the middle of the panel, and it will turn on and begin at the last setting you used, which is pretty rad and also makes it easier to quickly turn off. It’s slightly harder to find the buttons during use, since they aren’t raised and don’t light up like regular Mona’s, but you could argue that it’s easier to clean since the buttons don’t have crevices.  Like Mona, you can adjust the vibration power during any function with the +/- buttons. You also have the option making its curve more prominent if you hit the ▲ button to stop it just right when switching from motion to its steady vibration mode.

As is standard of LELO toys, Mona Wave is waterproof/submergible, rechargeable (2 hours for full charge), and comes with a satin storage bag, a sample LELO lube packet, and a 1 year manufacturer’s warranty/10 year guarantee.

pennysblog_monas3I wish LELO had asked me to test out the Mona Wave before it was released, because I think it has the potential to be a fantastic vibrator with some improvements. Obviously, the sound needs to go, and I wish it could move faster and possibly more than 30 degrees. If it had a motion function that had a sort of unpredictable, erratic movement so you didn’t know what was coming (like a real finger)–that’d be even better.

As is though, I don’t recommend dropping $179 on it. Sure, it can make me come–but its sound is a constant annoyance, and I don’t want my orgasms mixed with frustration. If it was as strong as Mona and wasn’t so damn loud, I’d probably recommend getting it over regular Mona because why not have the option of masturbating with a robot finger? And hello, just look at the gorgeous blue one!1 And if it moved more and faster, maybe I could forgive its awful sound. But since it’s loud and doesn’t give me what I want, I’ll rarely use it. Unless LELO fixes some of the issues I’ve mentioned, I’ll staying loyal to regular Mona.

I should disclaim here that I’m not a huge fan of regular Mona’s shape for g-spot stimulation, so there’s a chance you might love the Mona Wave’s motion even though I don’t. If you don’t need a lot of movement or speed for g-spot stimulation and think you can get over the noise, go for it. If the sound makes you so frustrated that you throw it against the wall though, I’ll have to say I told you so.

All of that said, I did have some epic double Mona orgasms (with Mona Wave pushing up on my g-spot and original Mona on my clit) that almost let me overlook its noise…but I shouldn’t need 2 versions of a toy to enjoy it properly. And come on, for $179 I expect a vibrator that doesn’t sound like a cheap POS. $179 buys a lot of pizza.

If you want it, get the Mona Wave directly from Lelo or from SheVibe, one of my fave retailers.

Thanks for sending me the Mona Wave in exchange for my honest review, LELO!


  1. I didn’t get my choice of color. 

Review: Tantus Slow Drive

pennysblog_slowdriveThe Tantus Slow Drive doesn’t look like much. With only 5 insertable inches & a 1.2″ max girth, it’s not lengthy or girthy. But the Slow Drive proves that you shouldn’t judge a dildo by its size–even though it’s smaller than most of my dildos, the Slow Drive’s perfect-for-g-spotting curve makes it stand out in a sea of sex toys.

Made of smooth, glossy, single density Tantus silicone, the Slow Drive is firm, but it still has some flex and give. It features a curved tip for g-spot or prostate stimulation, and it has a flared base, so it can be used in a harness.

Since it’s petite, the Slow Drive is effortless to insert for me. It is its own warm up. With a little bit of lube, its smooth silicone glides easily, and its “come hither” curve immediately gives me the I-need-to-squirt feeling. It feels intense, but since it’s so smooth and small, it’s not too intense. It’s definitely not as extreme as my other favorite g-spot dildos like the Pure Wand or Comet, but that’s ok–it’s just a different type of g-spot stimulation.

It may sound cliché, but the Slow Drive’s name was aptly chosen–it’s one of those toys that’s great for taking your time, warming up, and letting arousal build gradually. I usually start slow, using the curve to “tug” on my g-spot, and eventually move on to faster thrusting, which often ends up with squirting all over my Throe. On the flip side, I can also combine it with a clit vibe and have a blended orgasm fairly quickly if I’m in the mood.

I’ve also tried the Slow Drive anally since it’s manageable for my butt1, and I can get some subtle g-spot pressure from it that way. I tried it on Jake (by hand) as well–he’s still fairly new to prostate play, and when I asked him how it was after using it on him, he said it felt nice but not super intense. I haven’t tried it for pegging, but since it’s harness compatible it could be used that way, though I’d probably go with the Slow Drive Long for that, since it’s rather short.

My main complaint about the Slow Drive is that it’s not available in the gorgeous, glowing lime green anymore, though I’m thankful it still comes in the lovely, shimmery silver version I have. Its unique triangular base is also slightly less comfortable for me to hold than classic round bases, but it’s not a big deal. On the plus side, the unique base means you know which way it’s pointing, which is helpful if you’re using it on someone else. Also, the Slow Drive might be too short for some, so if you prefer more length to hold on to, check out the Slow Drive Long.

The Slow Drive is an amazing little g-spotter.  It’s now my go-to recommendation for an affordable first g-spot dildo, since it’s perfect for firm but not too extreme g-spot stimulation. Since it’s small, smooth, and doesn’t have a pronounced head, it’s perfect for beginners, those who don’t want a lot of girth, and people who have issues with other toys catching on their pubic bone. And even if you usually prefer girthier toys (like me), you’ll probably be pleasantly surprised by how amazing the Slow Drive’s simple yet effective design and magical curve feels.

Right now the Limited Edition Purple Haze Slow Drive is still available for only $25.50 with code PENNY at checkout! (While supplies last.)

Or, get the classic Slow Drive (in silver!) for $37.40 or the Slow Drive long for $43.35 with code PENNY, anytime!

Thanks, Tantus!


  1. and because I wanted to know what it feels like to be fucked in the ass by a pirate 

Review: Shibari Halo Wand

pennysblog_halowandOn paper, the Shibari Halo Wand seemed like it would be an amazing wand vibrator. Its entire head is covered in non-porous silicone that doesn’t attract lint, it’s USB rechargeable1, and it’s waterproof.  Although it’s large (12″), it’s light and fairly quiet.2  It’s also inexpensive ($55 from SheVibe) for all of the qualities it boasts.

Before I actually used it, I thought the Halo Wand would be strong enough to easily get me off. Oh boy, was I wrong. The Halo is strong enough to bring me right to the brink of orgasm, but its vibration feels surface level and not satisfying, and I can never quite get there. It’s like smelling a pizza but not being able to eat it. Or holding an amazing sex toy that I don’t have enough money to buy. It’s like I’m flying on the way to an exotic vacation, but instead of landing on white sand beaches and drinking margaritas, I’m doomed to circle in the stuffy plane forever with a screaming toddler kicking the back of my seat.

I liked to be teased in the right context, and I don’t think a sex toy necessarily has to get you off or get you off quickly to be worth using…but the Halo is a wand vibrator. It’s not trying to feel like oral or provide some unique stimulation–its purpose is to vibrate to orgasm, and it’s failing at life. About half the time I run and grab my Hitachi after I use the Halo in a desperate attempt to get the release I need, only to realize I feel desensitized. The other half of the time I use it, I just give up on orgasm all together.

I can get off from a wide range of vibration, but for some reason, the Halo just does not work for me. To the touch, the Halo feels very similar to the Mystic Wand, but my clit is much more perceptive, and the Mystic can get me off, while the Halo doesn’t. I did finally have an orgasm from it once, but it was when I was so aroused that I could’ve gotten off humping a pillow, so that hardly counts. And even then, it took longer than it should have and left me less than satisfied.

Besides that fact that the Halo Wand fails its basic purpose for me, it also has some other issues. For one, it’s advertised as a 10 speed vibrator, when in reality it only has 2 steady speeds and 8 vibration patterns. And you have to click through each speed to get to the next, so if you like a vibration pattern you have to go through all of the other patterns to get to it. Since it’s not that strong, it also seems unnecessarily large.

I’m picky when it comes to wand vibrators. I don’t like the Doxy either (though it can at least get me off), while many other bloggers love it. And some other bloggers like the Halo…so it’s possible you might like it even though I can’t stand it. So far the only wands I actually enjoy are the Hitachi & the Mystic (though I rarely use it since it’s battery operated.)

I really wanted to love the Shibari Halo Wand. Hell, I really wanted to at least like it. It’s sleek, its head is made of silicone, it’s rechargeable, it’s waterproof–all things I want to see from more wand vibrators. In theory you might enjoy it since we’re all different etc. etc., but after the depressing number of orgasms the Halo has ruined for me, I definitely don’t recommend it.

Thanks for sending me the Halo in exchange for my honest review, SheVibe!


  1. and also comes with a wall converter 

  2. It’s quieter than the Hitachi or Doxy and about the same noise wise as the Mystic. 

Review: Lelo Mona 2

pennysblog_monaIt was really only a couple of years, but I felt like I’d been waiting my whole life for the LELO Mona 2. It started with Epiphora’s glowing review. Then I felt its rumbly goodness at Catalyst Con last year. As time went by, it seemed like everyone and their Mom had a Mona except me (seriously, my best friend’s Mom has one.) I almost resigned myself as the person who would just photograph other people’s Monas, but thankfully LELO saved the day by sending me one to review.

The Lelo Mona 2 has a cult following. People make shrines to it. They have back up Monas. They’ve written songs about it and painted paintings in its honor. So to say I was excited to finally have a Mona to call my own would be an understatement.

By now I’m sure you’re wondering…does it live up to all the hype? Well, take a look at the brief notes I took after my first few times using Mona:

1st orgasm- I used Mona clitorally, it sent chills throughout my body even on its low setting. I was so fucking excited, I felt like I was losing my virginity again, I came at full power, and YESSS thank GOB for Mona.

2nd orgasm- Like 5 minutes after my 1st. I was famished and deciding between pizza and another orgasm and Mona won!

3rd- Came like a mofo during sex with Jake.

If you know me at all, then you know that it is a BIG DEAL when I choose anything over pizza, especially when I’m starving. So to choose another orgasm over cheesy heaven while my tummy is grumbling is one of the best compliments I could give a vibrator.

But since not everyone compares vibrators to pizza, let’s talk about why the Mona rocks a bit more objectively.

The Mona 2 is an all around solid vibrator. It’s 8″ long, with about 5 insertable inches1 of Lelo’s signature smooth, magical lint repelling silicone. It features a hard, curved body, and it has a wide range of power levels, from a light rumble to strong, satisfying vibrations. It has 6 vibration patters, which can be enjoyed at any power level. Its interface is sleek and user friendly–the buttons are easy to find and press, and they light up. It can be used both vaginally and clitorally. It’s completely submersible and easy to clean. Basically, Mona’s resume is extremely impressive.

Although it’s designed as a g-spot vibrator, where Mona really excels for me is clitorally. Its tapered shape is perfect for resting on my clit, and its long handle is a godsend because its easy to grip, and since its vibration is focused in the silicone portion, my hand doesn’t go numb. Its handle makes it very easy to use simultaneously with a dildo, a penis, or a butt toy–I can even have hands free orgasms with it squeezed between my legs while I’m on my side.

Mona is also the first vibrator I’ve actually enjoyed with the vibration turned on internally. It’s rumbly enough at its low settings that it doesn’t feel too tickly (as most internal vibes feel to me), though it’s too much and feels like it’s rattling my g-spot at its higher speeds. Its hard, curved shape feels good while thrusting and squeezing or just vibrating against my g-spot, and its fun to alternate between clitoral and internal vibration.

That said, Mona is not the holy grail of g-spot toys for me. Sometimes Mona’s shape and vibration is enough for my g-spot, but often it just doesn’t feel quite curved enough or girthy enough. When I’m craving an intense, squirty session, I’ll reach for the Pure Wand, Buck, or another one of my favorite dildos…but often with Mona on my clit! And although it doesn’t always wow mine, plenty of other people’s g-spots adore it. In fact, I seem to be part of a minority of people who don’t love it unquestionably for g-spotting.

pennysblog_mona2

Mona is one of my favorite vibes, and I highly recommend it for most people. Its shape, strong vibration, and easy to hold handle make it a fantastic all around vibe. It’s a great first time (or any time) vibe purchase, since it’s incredibly versatile–it has a wide range of vibration, it can be used vaginally or clitorally, and it’s completely waterproof. It’s also sleek, rechargeable, and as is standard for Lelo, it’s made of smooth, hygienic silicone and comes with a 1 year warranty. If you’re like me, Mona might even cause you to question the meaning of life after you choose it over pizza…

The only people I don’t recommend Mona to: people who are looking for very intense g-spot stimulation and prefer girth or an extreme curve, or people looking for very strong vibration. Mona is rumbly and strong, but it’s not a powerhouse. If you want/need the most powerful vibrations available, I’d recommend the Magic Wand, Eroscillator, or Tango instead. And if you’re looking for intense, direct g-spot stim, the Pure Wand or Comet Wand.

Thanks Lelo, for sending me this amazing vibe in exchange for my honest review!

 


  1. ~1.5.” max girth 

Review: Fleshlight Succu Dry

pennysblog_succudry1Before I start talking specifics, can we take a moment to appreciate that the Fleshlight Succu Dry exists? You can fuck a vampire mouth with fangs. Let that sink in.

Since I don’t have a penis, this review is based on my partner Jake’s experiences with the product. And while I love my vagina, I admit I got a bit of penis envy while watching him thrust between those vamp fangs.1

If you’re not familiar with Fleshlights, they’re masturbator sleeves inside of cases that resemble flashlights. They’re made of Fleshlight’s soft Real Feel Super Skin and are modeled after orifices–vaginas, butts, mouths, etc., and you lube them up and go to town. The Succu Dry is part of the Fleshlight Freaks line, which also includes the Drac (anther vampire), Alien, Cyborg, Zombie, and Frankenstein orifices. Fleshlight, you are winning at life.

In addition to the classic Fleshlight design, they also make a line of masturbators in a smaller beer can design, like the Succu Dry, which are less expensive. The main difference between the Succu Dry and other Sex in a Can Fleshlights vs the originals is size. The canals in the original Fleshlights are 9″ long and have a diameter of .5″, whereas the Sex in a Cans are only 5.5″ long and have a diameter of .25.” If you have a bigger than average penis, you might prefer the original design.

Fleshlights come in all sorts of textures, and the Succu Dry has a unique one called “The Fang” featuring “dozens of tiny fangs that will gently bite at you until you’re drained of every last drop.” Basically, they’re nubbies with a pointed shape, but they’re soft. You can adjust the Succu Dry’s suction by tightening or loosening the bottom of the can.

pennysblog_succudry2Overall, Jake has really enjoyed the Succu Dry. He likes the unique sensations the fang texture provides, and he finds that he takes his time more with it than he would with his usual method (his hand.) The Succu Dry feels really tight, which could be either a good or bad thing based on your preferences, and he likes it, but he can only use it for up to about 20 minutes before the tightness is too much and starts to feel chaffing. He also prefers thrusting shallowly with it rather than going in and and out completely because of how tight it is.

Due to its material and tightness, the Succu Dry also requires a lot of lube. Jake’s gone through a bottle of lube already after using it for about a week. Jake has only tried one other Fleshlight (the Vibro Pink Lady with no texture), but he much prefers the Succu Dry since he enjoys the fangs texture. I’d like to have him try an original Fleshlight with texture at some point to see which he prefers.

In general Fleshlights are pretty easy to clean, you just rinse them with warm water, let them dry completely, add renewal powder if you want, and then store them. Since the Succu Dry is very textured and also very tight though, it takes a long time–about 24 hours–to dry completely, so it’s definitely not a toy you can use and stash away quickly. Since the material is porous, Fleshlights shouldn’t be shared. You should only use water based lube with Fleshlights, as silicone or oil could damage the material. If you want more info. on how to use and wash your Succu Dry, Lovehoney has helpful videos up on the product page.

If you’ve always dreamed of getting a blow job from a vampire, you’re in luck, because this Fleshlight will suck you dry. The creepily realistic fangs are just begging for your wooden stake–your Mr. Pointy! The Succu Dry is the perfect eerie and pleasurable sex toy for dark fantasies and vampire play, and it’s also a great masturbator option since the Sex in a Can toys are less expensive than original Fleshlights.

If you want the Succu Dry for Halloween, order it today or tomorrow and it should get there in time! Or order it in the next couple of days and get Express shipping for a little extra and it should be there in time as well. Let’s be honest though–any time is a good time for vampire sex play!

*UK readers, get the Succu Dry here!

Great news, y’all! You can now get 10% off of your Lovehoney purchase when you go to my page

Thanks for sending me the Succu Dry in exchange for my honest review, Lovehoney! (If you purchase through my links, you’ll be supporting my blog as I make a small commission.)


  1. I may have also chanted, fuck Druscilla! 

Review: Tantus Splash

pennysblog_splash1

For me, the Splash was an acquired taste, kind of like Fernet.

If you haven’t tried it, Fernet is an Italian liquor that has an herby taste. Some people don’t like its distinctive flavor, but when I was in studying in Argentina in college, it was everyone’s drink of choice. Like, if you don’t like Fernet there, just go home. So I tried it again…and again…and before long I was in love with its weird flavor and sharing a huge vat of Fernet and Coke with about 10 friends while out at the boliches.pennysblog_splash2

That’s how the Splash was for me. I’d heard other bloggers rave about it, so I was dying to try it. But the first time I did, I didn’t really like it.  It felt strange and almost irritating, and I wondered what all of the hype was about. I’d heard that the type of people who like it are “texture sluts.” Obviously we all have our preferences, but I wanted to join the texture slut club. So I tried it again…and again…and now I love its exceptional texture.

The Splash is an intense dildo. Not because it’s super girthy or curvy, because it’s not1, but because it’s firm and has drips of silicone along its body that provide truly unique sensations. Just look at it. It looks part sci-fi, part artsy, which I love. Realistic toys are great, but sometimes you just want to masturbate with something that looks like a shimmery alien blob, am I right?

The Splash isn’t a dildo I use to thrust with wild abandon. I squeeze around it, and with a vibe on my clit, I use short, minimal thrusts, because that’s all I need to devour its texture. The little ripples on the top of its head feel amazing going in and rubbing on my g-spot, and when inserted deeper, the drips feel fabulous. As is standard for Tantus dildos, the Splash is harness compatible and anal safe, and since it’s 100% silicone, it’s hygienic, and it can be boiled and sterilized.

My vag isn’t always in the mood to be Splashed. But when I  do get a sudden craving for its drippy texture, nothing else will satisfy. And I can now proudly say I am a texture slut, thanks to this gorgeous dildo. I <3 you, Tantus.

If you love textured toys, you need the Splash. If you’re not sure if you like texture or not and want to try something new, the Splash is amazing, and I bet you’ll like it. If you want to try out the same texture but aren’t sure about its size, you could try the smaller Splish. If you don’t like texture, the Splash probably isn’t for you, but Tantus has lots of other high quality, 100% silicone dildos to choose from!

Don’t forget to use code PENNY at checkout for 15% off!

pennysblog_tantusbannerThanks for sending me the Splash in exchange for my honest review, Tantus!


  1. it has a 1.75″ diameter 

Lelo LUNA Smart Bead Review

pennysblog_LUNASmartBeadA week ago Lelo came out with their new LUNA Smart Bead™, a product that is supposed to function as a personal trainer for your vag. Sounds amazing right?! Spoiler alert: be prepared for an incredible let down.

The idea behind the LUNA Smart Bead™ is that you insert it and follow a 5 minute workout program, squeezing your PC muscles when it vibrates and relaxing them when it doesn’t. Based on your performance, it rates your orgasm potential and gives you a routine based on that the next time you use it. After doing the routine every day, you’re supposed to progress to higher levels and strengthen your muscles over time and therefore your orgasm potential as well.

The Smart Bead™ is silicone (but is hard and has no give), and its retrieval cord seems to be made of plastic, though the manual doesn’t specify. It’s fairly easy to use–here’s how it works:

-You press the power button to turn on the LUNA Smart Bead™. It blinks to show you what Level you’re on (it starts you at L3: Intermediate.)

-It gives you a 5 minute kegel exercise routine to follow–when it vibrates, you squeeze your PC muscles, and when it stops, you relax them. As you squeeze, it increases the vibration (you may or may not feel it.)

-After the 5 minute routine, it signals it’s over by vibrating 3 times quickly and then turns itself off.

-The next time you turn on the LUNA Smart Bead™, it blinks to show what Level you’re on (it remembers based on your last workout and is supposed to select the right level for your next routine.)

I was really excited to try out the LUNA Smart Bead™ because I like the idea of following a short kegel workout routine everyday, and a product that can rate my orgasm potential seemed like a really cool idea. Since Lelo’s other kegel workout product, the Luna Beads, are awesome, my expectations were high.

But sadly, the LUNA Smart Bead™ is so disappointing, I’m embarrassed for Lelo.

First of all, it doesn’t seem to measure “orgasm potential” or really anything for that matter. The first time I used the Smart Bead™, I almost threw it against the wall when it gave my vagina an L1 rating. I know my vagina isn’t an L1: Beginner, “For the uninitiated who has never practiced before” (quote from the manual.) Um, no. I have long, intense orgasms. I squeeze and workout my muscles frequently. I was incredibly insulted, although I had a hunch that the Smart Bead™ was full of shit already.

pennysblog_lunasmartbead2So, Jake and I experimented with the Smart Bead™. Jake, who does body building and is very strong, went through the 5 minute program, squeezing the bead with his hand as hard as possible, and it gave him a L3 Intermediate score. Afterwards, I tried squeezing it with my hand, and it gave me a L4 Advanced score. There is no way I was squeezing it as hard as Jake, so it clearly isn’t actually measuring strength. Within the week I’ve had it, I’ve also tried it as intended vaginally, and it’s given me scores of L1, L3, & L2. If it measures anything (which I’m skeptical that it does) it’s definitely not muscle strength or “orgasm potential.”

The second fail of the LUNA Smart Bead™ is its vibration. I get that it’s supposed to be a workout product and doesn’t necessarily need to be super strong, but the vibration is disgraceful. Let me put it this way: it’s about the same strength as the first speed on the crappy Princessa. It’s supposed to increase in strength as you squeeze, and sure, it does…it goes from incredibly weak, buzzy vibration, to slightly less weak, still incredibly useless vibration. Coming from Lelo, makers of Mona, this is just sad. And in the manual, it claims that the Smart Bead™ provides a continuous vibration mode “purely for pleasure.” HA.

Gross.

Gross.

In addition to its questionable workout levels and disappointing vibration, the Smart Bead™ is battery operated. Lelo products are known for being rechargeable as a standard, so this is a backwards move on their part. And not only is it battery operated, you have to take off the top of the Smart Bead™ to insert the battery, so it has a seam on the part you insert. Lube and juices crust along the inside of the bead, and it’s gnarly. And since it’s only waterproof when closed, that means it’s pretty much impossible to clean thoroughly. Oh, hell no.

Regardless of the fact that it doesn’t really measure orgasm potential, it could be debated that using the Smart Bead™ daily could increase your muscle strength. And sure, I guess it could, but using it is a snooze fest. It’s too small to provide any real muscle resistance, its vibration is weak, and it will occasionally stop vibrating for 10+ seconds , which doesn’t seem like a lot, but when you’re focusing only on the program, it’s enough to almost put you to sleep. Don’t worry though, it will eventually awaken you with sad vibration. And then disappoint you by its crappy level system. And then straight up infuriate you by the fact that it can’t be cleaned thoroughly and that it’s battery operated. Oh, and to add to it all, it only comes in 2 shades of pink. I guess it makes sense that it debuted near Halloween, because the Smart Bead™ is so bad, it’s scary.

I haven’t been this disappointed by a Lelo product since the horrible Ida. At least the Smart Bead™ doesn’t hurt. But its design is incredibly flawed, its vibration is sad, and it’s a ridiculous $109. If you saw the Smart Bead™ and thought it’d be cool to try, I strongly recommend that you reconsider. Get the Luna Beads instead, and let’s hope Lelo decides to fix the Smart Bead™, because it had the potential to be great…but instead it’s just an incredible disappointment.

Thanks for sending me the Smart Bead™ in exchange for my honest review, Lelo!

Review: Vixen Creations Buck

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Y’all, I am in love. Simply put, Buck is perfection.

But let’s back up. First, let’s talk VixSkin. Vixskin is a dual density silicone from Vixen Creations (they’re located in Austin, btw!), and it’s unlike any other silicone I’ve ever felt. It’s super squishy with a hard core, and it’s incredibly detailed. It reminds me of the uber realistic materials I used to sell at the sex shop…except it’s 100% silicone and hygienic! I seriously want to meet and give major high fives to whoever created the recipe…it’s life changing. I recently got my first 3 VixSkin dildos: Buck, Tex, & Johnny (more reviews upcoming–spoiler alert: they’re all awesome,) and Buck is my favorite.

pennysblog_buck_2Buck is girthy and veiny, with a 2″ pronounced head and ~6″ shaft, with a flared base. Its shaft starts at about 1.8″ below its head, and maxes out at a little over 2″ near its base. In use that translates to…perfection. Buck feels amazing thrusted shallowly, its head nudging on my g-spot, and it also feels fabulous thrusted deeper, its shaft providing a delicious stretch at my vaginal opening. Since it’s so squishy, I can thrust it wildly, but it’s also hard enough to feel intense. Did I mention its head? My g-spot adores it.

With eyes closed, Buck feels incredibly real, which makes it perfect for role-play and fantasy. In fact, I fell in love with my partner all over again when he asked me if I wanted him to use Buck on me while I gave him a blow job. Adam used to be my fave for threesome role-play…but Buck has taken over the throne. Adam feels great, but Buck feels more realistic. At first Buck’s look and prominent veins seemed a bit over the top to me, but after using Buck, I love everything about it. Never change, Buck!

pennysblog_buck_3Now I usually have at least one of my VixSkin dildos out on my desk so I can squeeze it in between writing. They’re so squishy–they’re like stress-cocks. When I first got my Vixskin dildos, someone tweeted at me about how I’d soon find that even cleaning them is fun, and it’s so true. Washing Vixskin is like giving soapy handjobs, and it’s fabulous.

I have zero complaints about Buck. At 2″, it will be too girthy for some, but for me, it’s perfect. I’ve heard VixSkin is more reactive to hybrid/silicone lubes, so I’d recommend sticking with water based, though I do that with all silicone toys to be safe anyways. Since it has a flared base, Buck is harness compatible and anal safe, and it can be easily cleaned with soap and water or boiled for 3 minutes.

Should you get Buck? Yes, I think you should. I am enamored. Buck es mi amor. If all of my dildos disappeared, Buck would be one of the first I’d replace… I shudder to think about that happening though. If you’re looking for an awesome realistic dildo with some girth, I definitely recommend Buck. My Buck is “vanilla,” and it also comes in caramel and chocolate.

Get Buck at SheVibe, Lovehoney US, Lovehoney UK, or directly from Vixen.

Thanks Vixen Creations!

Review: Tracey Cox Supersex Toner Set

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Tracey Cox Toner Balls

I have a confession, y’all. I’ve been slacking on using kegel balls. It’s part laziness, park forgetfulness, and part me thinking that my vag is probably pretty strong from clenching around sex toys. But kegel health is important! And if there’s one body part I want to be strong, it’s my PC muscles. I need to be able to crush skulls with my vaginal canal…and squeeze around dildos harder, of course.

So I mostly wanted to try out the Tracey Cox Supersex Toner Set to remind myself to do more kegels, and it worked!

The Tracey Cox Supersex Toner Set comes with a single kegel ball and double kegel balls that are made of body safe silicone and hard plastic, and they feature balls with weights inside that move around and a stretchy silicone retrieval cord. The single ball is a little over 2″ long and 1.5″ wide, and the double set is about 4.5″ long and 1.5″ wide. While you can’t switch out weights like you can with the Luna Beads, you can start with the single ball (39g) and move up to the heavier double balls (78g) when you feel ready. (Comparatively, Luna Beads weigh between 28-74g.) I started with the double balls and had no problem holding them in.

When I wear the Toner Balls, they feel similar to the Luna Beads. They’re not quite as jiggly, but I can feel the balls’ subtle movement as I walk and move around. They’re fairly big for kegel balls, so I can always feel them, and they remind me to squeeze and exercise my PC muscles. They’re also really comfortable, and I’ve worn them for hours while out and about without any problems. The double balls are heavier and more stimulating, but I can feel the single ball by itself as well.

Although the fact that you can’t switch out the balls means they aren’t quite as versatile as the Luna Beads, I like that the Toner Balls aren’t in a holster. I use the blue beads on my Luna Beads anyways, so the holster is somewhat superfluous, and vag gunk loves to congregate around where the holster meets the balls.

I also like that the retrieval cord is made of soft flexible silicone because it’s easy to tuck out of the way, and it doesn’t poke at my vulva.  I’ve heard of a few people who have issues with the stiffer Luna Beads cord irritating their urethra, so a soft silicone cord should eliminate that problem. The cord is odd when I’m naked though–it feels like I have an antenna coming out of my vag. I’ve heard that the cord’s stretchiness can be an issue, but I haven’t had any problems with it. I just do a sort of gentle tug, tug to get them out, so I don’t stretch the cord too much.

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Toner Balls vs. Luna Beads Original & Noir

The only issue I have with the Toner Balls is the hard plastic circles on the balls. They don’t seem to serve any purpose, and although I haven’t noticed any vag gunk collecting there, there are tiny ridges that could potentially hold bacteria etc. I also wish they came in other color options besides Generic Sex Toy Pink.

Although they aren’t really orgasmic toys, kegel balls are awesome because your muscles have to work to hold them in as you move and walk around, so if you wear them while you’re active, you’re getting a workout without any actual effort. It’s kind of like sitting and watching a workout video in your sweats with a glass of wine…except it actually works!

Simple and effective, the Tracey Cox Supersex Toner Balls are a solid set of kegel balls, and for $26.99 for just the double beads or $35 for the whole set, they’re a great deal. If you don’t care about switching out weights and feel ready for heavy balls, I’d go with just the Toner Balls. If you want to work your way up to more weight, I’d get the the Toner Balls Set since they have more of a weight range. You could also get the single ball for $16.99 by itself, but I’d recommend getting the set because you’ll probably want to move up weights after a while. If you want a more gradual weight progression set, get the Luna Beads. If the Toner Balls look too big for you, the Luna Beads Mini/Noir are also good options, though I prefer bigger balls so I can feel them when I wear them.

*UK readers: the Toner Balls are available here & the Set here!

Thanks, Lovehoney!

**Post updated 11/6 from the Toner Balls to the Toner Set (Lovehoney sent me the single ball as well.)

Review: Minna Limon

pennysblog_limon1The Minna Limon is a photo op waiting to happen: it’s a vibrator that resembles a lemon or lime, and its tagline is “Fresh Squeezed.” But the Limon is more than just a cutesy fruit shaped sex toy–it uses unique squeeze technology which allows you to customize its vibration.

Made of body safe silicone, the Limon has a round body, a tapered tip, and a single button for turning it on and off and controlling which vibration mode it’s in. It has three vibration modes:

1. Free Play Mode- Press once to turn on the Limon. Now, when you squeeze it, it vibrates, and the harder you squeeze, the stronger its vibration.

2. Record Mode- With this function, any pattern you squeeze will be repeated back to you, but anytime you stop squeezing and start again, it starts the recording over. If you want to lock a pattern, hit the button again to go into lock mode.

3. Lock mode- In this mode, whatever pattern you recorded will play back over and over, even if you squeeze the Limon again. If you find a pattern you like, this is the way to go.

Its round shape seems somewhat ergonomic, but since the whole body of the Limon vibrates, it makes your hand start to tingle very quickly. It also spins around like it’s dancing, and once you add lube to the mix, the Limon can be very difficult to grasp securely. It’s as if the Limon has a mind of its own–and it’s a rebel. It doesn’t want to give you pleasure, it wants to sneak off and join the circus. It’s the Runaway Vibrator. As catchy as the fruit theme is, it’d be easier to use with a handle or something more to grasp.

pennysblog_limon2Despite the Limon being challenging to hold, I still enjoy using it because its vibration is strong and rumbly (power wise, it’s similar to Mona), and I love that I can create my own pulsation patterns. I usually don’t like the pre-programmed pulsations in vibrators because they often feel robotic, but with the Limon, I can create a pattern than works and tease myself really well, prolonging my orgasm until it’s explosive. My favorite pattern is a variation of pulse, pulse, longer pulse on high power, so it rumbles and stimulates my inner clit but doesn’t make me come immediately because it isn’t steady vibration.

My clit really enjoys round vibrators/being surrounded with vibration, and pinpoint stimulation isn’t my go to, so the Limon’s round shape works out well for me. Although its tip looks like it’s meant for pinpoint clitoral simulation, since it’s so short, it’s not going to work for everyone’s clit, so if that’s what you’re looking for, keep that in mind.

My favorite ways to use the Limon are for clitoral only stimulation alone or during penetration with a partner. Since it’s hard to hold and also requires two hands to program how you like it, using it by myself with dildos just doesn’t work out well. The Limon is one of my favorite vibes to use during penetration with a partner though…the teasing pulsation has led to me having up to 5 orgasms in a row! Some other great things about the Limon: it’s very quiet, it’s waterproof, it’s (USB) rechargeable, and its silicone is silky smooth/doesn’t attract lint as much as a lot of other silicone.

Here are a few tips for using the Limon:

-Read the manual–it’s helpful.

-Only put a small drop of lube on it since it’s very hard to hold if it’s all lubey.

-Once you have a pattern you like set up, grasp the Limon by its hard sides–it’s easier to hold that way.

-To create a steady vibration mode, squeeze the Limon with one hand, and simultaneously use your other hand to hit the button twice to lock it.

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Besides the Limon being difficult to hold, I also had issues with defective Limons. Plural. The first Limon I received didn’t work at all, and the second worked for a few weeks, but then got stuck in charging mode (the light was on even when it was unplugged) and then stopped working completely. The third one seems to work fine, but I’ve only had it for a couple of weeks. Normally I wouldn’t recommend a product that had this many issues, but I know a lot of other bloggers who’ve tried the Limon and haven’t had any problems, so perhaps it was just bad luck. The Limon does come with a 1 year manufacturer’s warranty as well, so if there’s an issue, Minna will take care of it quickly.

I was somewhat concerned about flying with my Limon, since their website says air travel can deflate it, but I took it along on 5 flights during some recent traveling, and that didn’t happen at all. Since it’s not lockable for travel, I drained its battery life to ensure it wouldn’t go off during security, and I didn’t have any issues with it or my other toys in my carry on.

The Limon could definitely use some improvements–it would benefit from a handle or some shape that was easier to hold, it should be lockable for travel, and I wish you could save vibration patterns. But even though the Limon has its flaws, the fact that it can make me come hard (and sometimes over and over) means I am able to overlook them and enjoy it anyway–but I don’t recommend it for everyone.

Who I do recommend the Limon for: people who want a unique vibrator to use for teasing or who want to try customizable vibration patterns, people who like rumbly vibration but don’t need super strong toys. Who I don’t recommend it for: people who prefer steady vibration or those who have hand/wrist issues. I also wouldn’t recommend it as a first time vibrator, since it’s a bit complicated to use.

Thanks Burlesque Toyshop! (now closed)