How did you get into blogging?
I’ve been writing online since I was 9 years old, but it wasn’t until last year that I decided to try my hand at a serious blog (as opposed to a personal online diary!).
In March of last year I saw that my local sex shop was hiring, and having been obsessed with sexuality all my life, I applied. While waiting to hear back about my application, I did some research on sex toys to make sure my knowledge was up to date – and in the process, I discovered sex toy review bloggers like Hey Epiphora and Dangerous Lilly. I thought, “Hey, I could do that!” and started right away. (And no, I didn’t get the gig at the sex shop! Probably because I don’t have any retail experience…)
Your blog recently turned one year old. How did you celebrate?
I had a photographer friend shoot some photos of me surrounded by dozens of sex toys from my collection, for fun and for posterity. It was fun to see how many toys I’ve accrued in a year of blogging!
A very strong feature of your blog is your consideration of sex terminology. How did you get interested in deconstructing and improving our sexual language?
I had a sex-positive upbringing, but even so, I think I internalized a lot of negative ideas about sexuality from the way our culture talks about sex. For example, the word “blowjob” implies that it’s work and therefore not fun—and the lack of a good informal equivalent for cunnilingus suggests that oral sex on women isn’t as important or expected as oral sex on men.
The mission of my “Let’s Talk About Terminology” feature is basically to deconstruct and dissect the ways we talk about sex. Many of the terms we use are inherently sex-negative or sexist, and I want to engage my readers in a dialogue about what some better options might be.
What is your favourite sex word and why?
The word “vulva” is kind of weird and clinical, but I love it anyway—mainly because it always impresses me when people use it correctly. It’s not the same thing as the vagina, and I love people who make that distinction!
Also, “snatch.” I feel it’s underused and underrated. It’s kinda hot. Look at all those consonants!
And your least favourite?
I hate a lot of crass, derogatory terms for female sexual anatomy. “Tuna taco” and “beef curtains” come to mind.
How did you get into writing sex toy reviews?
When I first started my blog, I was lucky enough that I already had about 10 different toys that I could review, so I didn’t have to go out and buy more to supplement my blog content. I reviewed those first, while building up a readership, and then started pitching myself to various sex toy retailers as a reviewer.
The first company that agreed to send me stuff was EdenFantasys. The first thing they sent me for free was a book of spanking-themed erotica, and I was so excited about it! Then I met the amazing folks at Sex Toys Canada and they offered me a very generous deal where they give me free reign to pick which toys I want to review each month in exchange for writing for their blog. I’ve worked with other retailers too, but the majority of the toys I’ve reviewed have been sent to me by those first two. They’ve been fantastic to me!
Do you have advice for others interested in reviewing sex products?
Read Epiphora’s beginners’ guide to sex toy reviewing because she is the queen of the reviewers and really knows what she’s talking about.
I have to reiterate what she says about the importance of loving to write. If you’re going to start a sex toy blog, it HAS to be because you genuinely love to write about sex toys; it can’t just be because you want to quickly make a bunch of money and have your mailbox overflow with free dildos, because it doesn’t work that way. If you don’t enjoy writing, you will lose interest before your blog even gets good enough to attract retailers and readers.
Aside from that, I’d say it’s crucial to make good connections with companies that make or sell sex toys. Try to have at least one contact at each company you’re interested in reviewing for, and be nice to them! Respond to their e-mails promptly, thank them, et cetera. Sending free toys to a random blogger is a risk, and your behaviour should take that into consideration.
Finally, don’t be afraid to write negative reviews, even if you really like the person who sent you the toy. You are a reviewer, not a promotional copywriter! If you hated a toy, don’t be shy about explaining why in great detail. If all your reviews are positive, you will have no integrity and people will notice.
What are some of your favourite toys?
My all-time favourite is the Eroscillator. Best, best, best vibrator ever invented! It actually oscillates instead of vibrating, so it doesn’t cause numbness and it feels like it goes deeper than a regular vibrator. I keep mine on my bedside table, at the ready, 24/7!
My favourite anal toy, always and forever, is the medium Njoy Pure Plug!
What can we look forward to from you in the future?
Now that I’ve acquired pretty much all the toys I could want, I hope to start reviewing products that are a bit weird and unusual—for example, the Clone-a-Willy kit or the Jellyfish dildo.
I also hope to possibly start merging my real-life identity with my Girly Juice identity, bit by bit, over the coming year—though that still sounds really scary to me now! It would be nice to be able to put articles from Girly Juice in my real-life journalism portfolio one of these days… but I’ll have to wait and see if that’s something I become comfortable with this year.