The idea for this post arose during a Sex Ed Uncensored discussion – I’m getting a lot of content from Submissive Feminist’s weekly Twitter chat! We were talking about how you’d react to a new partner wanting to use sex toys during your first hook-up, and my initial answer was an enthusiastic ‘YES PLEASE I’M SO DOWN FOR THIS’. I managed to entirely miss out the nuance and questions you need to ask your partner before whipping out a vibrator (or a whip!). So, how should you approach discussing sex toys if you want to use them in a first time hook-up?
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Let’s start with why I initially got this wrong: to me, a partner bringing up sex toys before our first hook-up suggested that the can communicate their desires and advocate for their pleasure. That in itself is very sexy, and also a sign that we might have good sex because they’ve examined what “good sex” actually means.
Those things are true… and it’s important to have more of a conversation and beyond ‘ooh yes I love using sex toys’. I know I don’t always ask these questions – I certainly didn’t talk about all of this my enboifriend before they gave me a strap-on suck job on our first date! – but these might help if you’re looking for a starting point.
What sex toys would you like to use?
Before you say yes, it’s a good idea to know what you’re saying yes to – as much as I’m up for using sex toys in my fucking adventures, I definitely wouldn’t be ok with a partner pulling out a six-foot bullwhip during our first hook-up! I’m an enthusiastic but inept impact top, and even if I know my partner is an experienced kinkster I wouldn’t want to experiment with that kind of pain the first time I played with them. It’s completely ok to have limits around what you’re up for during a sexual encounter, and this applies not only to the filthy acts but also any sex toys you use together.
Of course, it’s more likely that your partner will want to use a vibrator, to help them get off, or maybe a cock ring, because they enjoy the extra intensity and hardness of their dick rubbing against the bedsheets as they go down on you. If you’ve discussed anal play, perhaps they’ll dig out a butt plug so they don’t have to jump straight to your cock or strap-on in their arse. I’m a big advocate for using sex toys during sex – but even if you want to use some lube because your cunt doesn’t always get as turned on as your mind, you should talk to your partner about it.
How do you clean your sex toys?
So now we’ve established that if your partner pulls out a meat-tenderiser to beat your ass with, it’s ok to ask if you can get a gentle warm-up spanking first. However, it’s also ok to ask how they clean the meat-tenderiser – or any other sex toy you’re going to use! Especially with impact toys that could draw blood, it’s important to make sure that everything is sanitised and sterilised. You probably don’t want to put something in your mouth if it hasn’t been cleaned since it was last in another partner’s arse, and it’s also ok to not want to let anyone else fuck themselves with your favourite glass dildo.
You should make sure that any sex toys you use are body safe and can be sterilised, especially if you’re going to share them with a partner. Non-porous, body-safe materials include silicone, specially treated wood, glass, and metal. Sex toys that have had your bodily fluids on them are described often described as being ‘fluid bonded’ to you or your partner. It is ok to use fluid-bonded toys with a new partner, as long as you use condoms with them. Which brings us to…
What are your safer sex practices around sex toys?
You should definitely discuss your safer sex practices before the first time you hook up with someone, but you should either include in that (or come back to) your safer sex practices around toys. Lots of folks will only use their own toys if they’re going to be touching their genitals, and only share impact toys if they’re not going to come into contact with bodily fluids. During my first threesome my play partners put a condom on their Doxy before pressing it against my junk until I squealed and squirmed, while the next time we fucked they used it on my again – without a condom, edging me through my knickers.
Every time I’ve anally topped a partner I’ve used a condom on the dildo I’m fucking my partner with. In the same way that you would discuss whether you’re going to use dental dams for oral sex or gloves for fingering, you should talk about when you last sterilised your butt plugs. You should always default to the safer sex practices of the most cautious partner. And it’s ok to not be comfortable with putting something in your arse which you know has been in someone else’s, even if you are using a condom. We all get to decide our own boundaries, even if they don’t seem rational – and if a partner shames you for them, then maybe your first hook-up should be your last hook-up.
How would you approach discussing sex toys if you wanted to use them in a first time hook-up? Drop me a comment here or come and find me on Twitter or Instagram and let me know what questions you ask before using sex toys with a new partner.
Quinn Rhodes (he/him) is a queer, trans, disabled sex writer with vaginismus. He’s a slut and a sex nerd who writes about his adventures in trying to fuck without fucking up. Quinn can usually be found wearing stomp-on-the-patriarchy boots while falling in love every time he fucks.