Camden-Market-Vagina-Museum

Florence Schechter Presents: Why The World Needs A Vagina Museum

Did you know that there’s a penis museum in Iceland?  (Maybe a bit far to travel for a look at phalluses seeing as so many just slide into DM’s on a daily basis, but that’s not the point.)

And did you know that there is no vagina equivalent anywhere in the world?

Florence-Schechter
Florence-Schechter – photo by Nicole Rixon

Cue Florence Schechter – superwoman extraordinarie, with a vision of bringing vulvae & vaginas to the world!

She decided to create the world’s first bricks & mortar museum dedicated to vaginas, vulvas and the gynaecological anatomy; the Vagina Museum!

Join us for an enlightening evening of vag-and-museum-talk with the fabulous Florence, where she’ll present a talk on “Why The World Needs A Vagina Museum” and discusses why she chose to set up the world’s first bricks and mortar museum dedicated to the vulvas, vaginas and the gynaecological anatomy, and the strange reactions she’s received along the way.


Join Us!

More About The Vagina Museum

By opening their first premises, the Vagina Museum can host an outreach programme that includes supporting healthy and inclusive sex and relationships education, engaging with doctors and other medical professionals to provide better services and supporting the trans and intersex communities. A packed events programme will include talks, panels, workshops, classes, comedy nights, performances and so much more!

In support of the Museum’s mission, the V.M crew have created an advisory and board of trustees that includes a hugely diverse group of people from all walks of life including medical professionals; scientists; academics in gender studies, literature and history of sex work; curators; activists working in LGBT+ rights, fighting
FGM and supporting people in poverty who menstruate; and sex educators.

Jasmine-Evans---photo-by-Nicole-Rixon
Jasmine-Evans-photo by Nicole-Rixon
But to make this great (and time-sensitive) opportunity a reality, the Vagina Museum Crew need your help to do it and have launched a crowdfunder to make the dream a reality – find out more and donate here > Vagina Museum Crowdfunding.

 

Happy Mother’s Day

Happy Mother’s Day

March 31 is all round a big day; there’s the International Transgender Day of Visibility, the last day of Spring and who could forget – Mothering Sunday!

Whether you’re a baby mama, a bunny mama or a domme mama this is a day for you only. Forget about those dirty nappies, hutches and sub minds and be as selfish as you like.

Put your feet up with your favourite erotic tale and try out one of our bestselling toys…

Baby Mamas

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We have so many parents coming into our shop complaining about the negative effects that having babies can have on your sex life – whether that’s alone or with a partner(s). You’re more tired, you’re busier and above all, you have less time. This point precisely is when we introduce to you the Zumio. Armed with a precision tip vibrator that seems to resemble some form of purple silicone dentistry, this sex toy is unique in more ways than one.

First conceived through the inspired mind of a single mother of three, the Zumio was designed and created by an entire team of women. With circular motioned masturbation a popular hit amongst vulva owns, the spiro-tip dances circles around the clitoris faster and more efficiently than you could imagine. In fact, Zumio took this one step further by conducting studies to back up their claims of a speedy orgasm. Out of a participant group whose age range spanned from 21-60+ a massive 89% climaxed in under five minutes. Time is money, people. This toy is crazy efficient – buy it here.

Bunny Mamas

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What more could a bunny mama want than a state of the art rampant rabbit or a delightfully cute, bunny-eared vibrator falling onto her lapin?

The beauty of rabbits is that they’re designed to incur blended orgasms – in other words, they stimulate your two favourite spots simultaneously. With traditional bunny ears that wobble and shake around the clitoris in a delightfully hoppy fashion, is enough to seal the deal. Meanwhile, a rabbit means that you can have a rotating, beaded or curved shaft designed to internally ravish your G-Spot. Bunnybelievable!

Domme Mamas

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Being this damn strict does not come so easy to everyone. Why not have some time off from your subs and devote an entire day to your devilish self? We have a new range of Maze rubber harnesses in stock that are designed for utter tantalization. Or, our on-site leather queen has hand-stitched some leather and rubber O-Ring chokers to add a regally bondage seal of approval on any wearer’s neck.  

Or perhaps you want to hang up your tawse spanker for the day and instead, leisurely swathe yourself in lilac lace – in which case, check out this chemise by Coquette…

 Happy Mothers Day! 

#momiloveyaforever

 

 

Non-Gendered Sexual Pleasure

Non-Gendered Sexual Pleasure

To mark 2019’s Transgender Day of Visibility we are celebrating all trans and non-binary folks by shining a light on non-gendered sexual pleasure. In other words, if you don’t feel particularly connected to your genitals and want to explore ways of getting around this when experiencing sexual pleasure then this blog is for you.

A prime example was first introduced to us back in 2015. This was the year that Buck Angel created a game changer in the sex toy industry with his Buck Off stroker, the world’s first toy for trans men. The slick black toy is a breath of fresh air in an ocean of pink bullets. It encourages users to feel more comfortable in their own skin when engaging in sexual activity.

This brilliant toy is only the tip of the iceberg. Read on to find out more tips and tricks to make the most out of your unique sexuality.

Erotica

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Often, the biggest hindrance of experiencing sexual pleasure is negative self-image. When the words “just relax” aggravate, there are measures you can take to have fun in actually distracting the mind. Erotica is a brilliant example of this. Allow yourself to escape into someone else’s story and immerse yourself in your fantasy scenario. Instead of focusing on yourself or seemingly perfect bodies in porn, why not close your eyes and truly let your imagination wander. If you don’t yet have a favourite author then perhaps first think about what roles you like to explore sexually and look at books that develop this perspective or fantasy.

Whether it’s spanking, threesomes, specific locations, couples’s play, classic or fetish literature you’re after – there is something for everyone. Perhaps, this will be all you need to take you away on your favourite sex dream. Otherwise, use it as a starting point to develop a better relationship with yourself as you enjoy your unique sexuality for what it is at whatever stage.

Let’s Get Nippy

Nipple play is one of the raunchiest parts of sex if you ask us. Whether it’s biting, pinching, blowing or sucking, fun with your nipples promises playfulness like no other. Dripping hot wax around areolae when their owner is blindfolded is delightfully naughty when the candle is specifically designed to burn no higher than at a body-safe temperature.

Grab a pinwheel or a feather and lightly trace it down the centre of their chest to below their belly button. Turn off just before the pubic bone to go around the hip and back up the waistline to the armpit (armpit play is SO sexy and if you don’t believe us then you haven’t tried it). Make your way to the areolae, licking it and blowing on the nipple. Do the same to the other side and your partner will be squirming in delight. Remember, when you shut off a sense, like sight with a blindfold, your other senses are at a heightened state of arousal.

If your partner dreams off nip nipping, ramp it up by twisting the nipple and pinching for different lengths of time. After cutting off the blood in this area, feeling it rushing back upon release of a pinch can be quite a saucy sensation. As long as you already know that your partner enjoys them, why not pick up a pair of nipple clamps? You can adjust the strength of the squeeze and continue with breath play. If there is extra tissue surrounding the nipples, i.e. breasts, and their owner enjoys their stimulation then don’t neglect them. A massage goes a long way – just make sure you start soft and listen to your partner’s cues as to their enjoyment of each action.

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You don’t necessarily need another person (or more) to enjoy nipple play. We like to encourage D-I-Y tactics whenever possible and this is most definitely possible. If you fancy giving it a go then get into your favourite sexy setting. Perhaps it involves sprawling across your freshly made bed or maybe it’s a candle-lit bath for one. Calm your mind by taking slow, deep breaths and imagine how you’d like your nipples played with. Start to tickle and caress your skin in your favourite erogenous spots – i.e. the places that turn you on. Start to massage the area around the areolae and take it slow to work your way to the nipple. You can pinch, stroke and twist as much as your heart’s desire. These nipple suction toys are a great idea for solo play or if you want to go hands free. Add a small splodge of lube before attaching onto nipples and then squeeze them to experiment with the sucking feeling.

Vibrating massagers are perfect for this kind of play. Those that are flatter (like a pebble) tend to be more versatile in their uses as you can use the shape experiment with what sensation you like best. For instance, using the tip to focalise specific points of pleasure can be alternated with using the flatter edge to press vibrations onto skin.

Tenga Eggs

Tenga eggs may be designed for penis owners but these toys are actually so versatile that genitalia-type proves irrelevant. Possibly the most obvious way to use a tenga egg is to squirt a healthy dollop of lube inside the egg, then slip it over the penis head with the ribbed side facing in and begin to stretch the egg up and down the penis as you masturbate.

Another option for those who may own a penis but don’t feel particularly connected to it could turn the egg inside out and slip it over their hand. Add lube to the outer side and rub the exposed ridges of the eggs around their genitals toward the prostate. This works in the same way for those who have labia and vulvae as they can stroke these regions with the egg turned inside out over a doxy wand for added vibrations.

If you prefer penetrative vaginal play, stretch the egg inside out over a dildo. You can then enjoy an added texture to your favourite toy, such as one of our hand-made dildos, which come in many shapes and sizes.  All block coloured dildos (as opposed to the marble effect we also create) are available with a Sh! bullet to insert inside. Please be aware that Tenga eggs when used in this way cannot and must not be used during any type of penetrative anal play…

…unless you fancy a trip to A&E as you’ve a missing egg inside of you, in which case we take zero liability. Soz.

Harnesses & Strap Ons

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Stepping into a harness has to be one of the most dominating, empowering experiences we can think of when in a sexual context. There’s nothing like a touch of cold leather (or rubber) to fiercen your mood. Our soft leather harnesses come complete with three hoops of various sizes to accommodate the size of your favourite dildo. Meanwhile, our hard leather and rubber come with large hoops. Whether you want buckles, corset-style or heavy duty, our harnesses are adjustable to your unique fit. If you’re a newbie to the harness/strap-on world then why not come to one of our fun workshops dedicated to this type of play? We break down all the usual hang ups and concerns involved, with our first point being how to actually introduce it into the bedroom and our second covering how to put one on without falling over.

Last Butt Not Least

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Due to the positioning of the G-spot and the prostate gland, anal play can be terrifically pleasurable, regardless of whichever you own. We recently wrote a piece on a beginner’s guide to anal play, demystifying all the in’s and out’s of bum fun if you find yourself a tad curious to try it out. The crux of the matter is to take it slowly with an extra generous serving of your favourite lube. If experimenting with a partner or two, ensure that everyone, especially the one on the receiving end, is happy and comfortable with what is happening. Your back door gate holds the key to an Aladdin-sized stash of sexual pleasure – if you fancy exploring it.

Celebrating international women’s day with empowering classes

Celebrating international women’s day with empowering classes

Somehow, it is already March 2019 and that can mean only one thing: get your party poppers at the ready because it’s about to be International Women’s Day (IWD) on March 8!

#BalanceForBetter is this year’s theme and is all about bringing societal and professional equality to the entire world: trans/WOC/sex-worker inclusive. But how many of us actually know how IWD began?

Let the Sh! history lesson commence…

Fatigued with blatant inequality and oppression, the early 1900s saw women in many western societies become increasingly vocal about their plight for equal rights. America saw the first National Women’s Day in 1909 before Germany’s then bad-ass leader of the “Women’s Office” for the Social Democratic Party, Clara Zetkin, introduced the idea of an International Women’s Day. In front of 100 women from 17 different countries, she proposed that there be one, the same day of celebration held globally for the recognition of women.

IWD was originated in 1911 in America, Austria, Denmark, Germany, and Switzerland on March 25. By 1913/14 it had begun to spread to more countries such as Russia and the UK amidst World War 1.

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Fast-forwarding to the year 2000 and the term “feminism” was radically uncool in popular culture. Despite lingering inequality, people didn’t seem that bothered: an IWD revival was paramount! Thankfully the site internationalwomensday.com was launched and with the help of charities like the World Association of Girl Guides and Girl Scouts and Catalyst Inc, IWD’s profile was once again on the incline. Phew!

IWD is now celebrated in all over the world, in countries such as Afghanistan, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Burkina Faso, Cambodia, China (for women only), Cuba, Georgia, Guinea-Bissau, Eritrea, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Laos, Madagascar (for women only), Moldova, Mongolia, Montenegro, Nepal (for women only), Russia, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, Uganda, Ukraine, Uzbekistan, Vietnam and Zambia.

Women may have more rights generally speaking, but they are still falling behind in paychecks, health, and education, whilst being victim to a higher level of violence globally.

  • Women of minority communities are experiencing significantly higher levels of oppression than white women.
  • Inclusive visibility and equality is still a massive issue in many respects.
  • Trans, non-binary people and sex workers are still fighting for basic equal work and living rights.
  • Members of the LGBTQ community still face terrifying levels of persecution.

This fight is nowhere near over yet.

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#BalanceForBetter in Sexuality

2019 is has been acclaimed as the Year of Female Sexual Pleasure and we’re on board with this mission to close, delete and forget the orgasm gap one step at a time.

There are a couple of different types of orgasm gaps, and we’ll start with the widest one: The gap between men and women in heterosexual partnered sex.

  • In one study examining about 800 college students, a 52% orgasm gap was found. 39% of women said that they usually or always experienced orgasm in partnered sex vs 91% of the men. In the same study, 39% of women said they always orgasm during masturbation vs 6% who said they always orgasm during sex with a partner.
  • Another study examined 15,000 college students and found that the orgasm gap is larger in casual sex than in relationship sex – no surprise there. Still, the same study concluded that there is still a 17% gap in committed relationship sex.
  • Similar statistics were found in a survey of about 3,000 single women and men in the U.S. ranging from 21 to 65+ years: When having sex with a familiar partner, women said they orgasm 63% of the time vs the lucky menfolk enjoying orgasms 85% of the time.

It would be unfair to blame the orgasm gap solely on the penis involved in hetero sex, as we’re all responsible for our own orgasms, but the fact is that penis-owners generally pop their corks easier and faster than women (and often fall asleep straight after).

Most clit-owners require clitoral stimulation in order to orgasm, so assuming that thrusting a penis back & forth will make a partner climax is a bit lazy, tbh. For a clitoris to climax, everyone involved in the pleasure-fest needs to be onboard with stimulation involving fingers, tongues, and/or toys.

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The orgasm gap between straight and lesbian women

It seems clear that lesbian sex offers a higher orgasmic quotient for participants, and we believe this to be down to the way lesbian couples enjoy sex. Rather than being focused on the end goal, the pleasure can easily stretch out over several hours until everyone is fully satisfied. Compare this to straight sex where penis-in-vagina tends to be the main focus, and it’s easy to understand why lesbian women come out on top.

By making sex pleasure-focused rather than end-goal-focused, orgasms gaps will soon start closing themselves.

Knowing your own body is the best and surest way of ensuring toe-curling orgasms, and if you want to celebrate the Year of Female Sexual Pleasure, we recommend taking charge of your “coming” by coming along to one of our Orgasmic! classes.

Our friendly sexperts will be on hand to share tried-and-thoroughly-tested tips & tricks for great orgasms, as well as talk guests through a variety of self-pleasure techniques – all whilst you sit back and relax with a glass of fizz and sweet treats!

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Knowing not only your own but also your partner’s body is crucial to pleasurable anal play. According to the 2009 National Survey of Sex and Behavior that polled nearly 2,000 adults (19 -59), women stated they climaxed 94% of the time when they were penetrated anally.

The fact that only 31 women responded to that aspect of the survey throws some shade over the stats but nevertheless, anal orgasms are a thing.

The anus and rectum are part of the sexual pleasure package, and stimulation of this area can have incredible results.

The clitoris is shaped like a wishbone, with legs (crura) and vestibular bulbs hidden under the outer genitals. For some peeps, the legs of the clitoris extend all the way down to the anus and during anal penetration, these legs are being stimulated.

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An anal orgasm is most likely brought on by the indirect stimulation of the internal clitoris and G-spot, but the A-spot located just under the cervix also enjoys stimulation through the delicate tissue that separates the vaginal canal from the rectum, and can produce intense orgasms. This takes time and care obvs; a butt-full of patience is essential, as is a large dollop of lube.

To help build your confidence and know-how on how to best pleasure this hidden jewel of an area, we’re introducing a class focusing on erotic anal play.  We’ll cover anatomy, advice, and hygiene, as well as highlighting the ins and outs of maximising the pleasure potential of pain-free anal penetration in the safest way for all parties. Between the Cheeks occurs on Wednesday 13 March at 6:30pm and is open to women & couples.


The anal play class mentioned above is currently SOLD OUT – but get in touch and let us know if you’d like us to schedule in another one soon!


Christian Grey and his Fifty Shades of Shadiness may have disappeared off of shelves, but kinky fuckery is here to stay.

Revel in your internal power; dominate or submit – but do it safely. Again, our super-team have put together a list of fave tips & tricks to create a sensual scene of power exchange for beginners.

The Bedroom Bondage class teachers cover safe use of fun paraphernalia such as cuffs, blindfolds and hot wax, and guests get an opportunity to try a couple of thwacks on willing bottoms too…

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You might feel that our popular Blow His Mind classes focus too much on The Big D for a mention on International Women’s Day, but bear with us.

Many – perhaps even most – of the women who come along to this class do so to build confidence. It’s often a case of “heading down south, popping it in and hoping for the best” but we can change that.

Giving a blow job can be one of the most empowering things you do in bed and whilst there is no right or wrong way of doing it, the Sh! sexperts teach a bagful of tricks that go down (arf!) so well that Time Out Magazine deemed it “high-end head.”

Classes at Sh! are raucous affairs and if you fancy building on your skills whilst catching up with friends, get a bunch of BFFs together and make the most of the group discount *wink*

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Whether you choose to celebrate the day by marching, dancing, rising, uniting, resisting or protesting; have a wonderful  International Women’s Day!

 

Can yoga really improve your shagging prowess?

Can yoga really improve your shagging prowess?

Yoga is a great way to tone your abs and increase agility. It’s also an ancient spiritual practice, similar to Buddhism, that has been developed and nurtured for over 5,000 years. Roughly translating as “union”, yoga encourages the merging of breath, mind and body. It revolves around the conscious decision of a person to “stay in the moment”. No doubt there are endless benefits of doing so, especially in the age of social media and mobile phones, but today we are concentrating on what yogic practises can do for your sex life.

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Breathe into it

Our team at Sh! love LOVE talking about orgasms. It’s a conversation that is seemingly endless – with so many versions, experiences and preferences to explore. But, what unifies these all together into the actual experience of an orgasm is someone’s ability to fully let themself go. Without being able to do so, an orgasm just isn’t going to happen, love. Multiple factors can contribute to this – the room you’re in, the scent of it, if anyone else is in, if you’re stressed, if you’re tired, if you’re too hot, if you’re too cold…the list goes on.

You need to be able to find a way to unify your mind and body to stay in the present…sound familiar yet? One of the best ways to clear your mind and bring your focus inward is to start with your breath. Pranayama (or essentially breathing exercises) is a big thing in yoga and proves that the majority of people actually breathe inefficiently in their day-to-day lives (though this is a whole other kettle of fish).

To see the difference yourself, close and soften your eyes when laid down or in a comfortable seated position. Ensure your spine is elongated – so if you’re laid down lift your head bringing your chin towards your neck and lower the back of your head back to the floor. If sat, lift up from your sit bones and work those lovely back muscles, shoulders back and chin parallel to the floor. By doing this, you create a clear path for the breath to travel through your body. Now, keeping those eyes gently shut, begin to take note of your breath. Is it shallow? Short? Long? Through your nose or mouth?

When you’re ready, start to deepen your breath on a long inhale through your nose. On your exhale, open your mouth and let out a big sigh (this feels amazing, trust). Do this as many times as you would like before closing your mouth and breathing solely through your nose.

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On your inhale, imagine your breath starting from your pelvic floor and filling up your stomach until it reaches your lower ribs, up to your chest, up to your neck- until you exhale and watch it leave your body from your neck, chest, ribs until it empties out your stomach. Ensure your inhales are as long as your exhales by counting or watching the breath move through the body. As you continue this, there are various methods you can take to focus this breath or energy you feel yourself building toward your orgasmic potentials.

One instance, is to start to bring your attention to your southerly hot spot. Feel the breath originate from there and build a heat. Imagine this heat (you could also envisage a light) rising up through your body as you inhale and releasing on your exhale. Continue to do this whilst focusing on various parts of your vulva/vagina/penis/whatever and you should feel your hand slowly wandering down…which brings us on to our next point.

Meditation

A common belief is that yoga has eight different limbs. Three of these focuses around the act of meditation. It works by shutting off your senses to bring your concentration inside. Yoga and Aryuvedic medicine believe that your body is overflowing with chakras (aka energy centres). There are seven main ones within your body, which happen to be inline with your central nervous system. Your sacral chakra (Svadhistana) is located at your lower abdomen, is assigned the colour orange and governs your sexuality, creativity and self-esteem.

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An unbalanced, blocked or “off” sacral chakra is traditionally believed to manifest as issues with sexual performance such as erectile dysfunction or bladder infections like UTI’s. There are many ways to unblock chakras such as crystal healing, conscious breathing or reiki. One (free) way to do so is via regular meditative practice – similar to the breathing exercise we have outlined above. Decide what time of the day is most convenient for you to practice meditation and do it everyday in the same spot. Just like an orgasm, the context of which you do this is so important. It needs to be regulated to train your mind to shut out all of the distractions. In yoga or aryuvedic practises, they call the interior versions of these your “monkey mind” – i.e. the voice in your head deciding what to have for dinner, whether you are going to walk or get the bus later or if you need to call your mum etc. By regularly practising meditation you learn to ignore this voice, to let these busy thoughts simply pass you by, which is super helpful for when you want to get down and dirty.

You can also stimulate and balance these energy points through various physical exercises, known in yoga as asana.

Lock and load

To achieve the correct posture in asana there are certain “locks” you imagine engaging on your body. We are focusing on the foundation of these, which just so happens to strengthen your pelvic floor. The root lock (mula bandha) involves a kind of “tighten and lift” motion that starts at your genitals and perineum and lifts up to reach your stomach. In other words, re-enact the sensation of holding a wee in. It’s a movement you can do at literally anytime, anywhere. You can do it in a meeting with your boss, at tea with your granny or sat on the bus. No one will know. Plus, a strong pelvic floor is key to unlocking the secret of a great orgasm. It grants you, better control of your earth-shattering orgasms, a stronger sensation and takes care of any pesky leakage. Cue you inner sexual goddess on the prowl.

Asana

To take this a step further, one posture in asana designed to specifically target your pelvic floor is known as bridge pose.

Bridge Yoga Pose

Start lying down on your back with your knees bent, feet flat on the floor a hips-width apart and arms by your sides with palms on the floor (or pressing them together with fingers interlaced). Inhale and lift your pelvis into the air. Imagine there is a rope tied around it and someone is pulling it up in the air like a puppet. Imagine your calves are pulling back towards you whilst your thighs are pushing them further away. Meanwhile, try to hold the bend of your knees directly above your ankles (rather than leaning into each other, which believe me, they will try to). Hold for 5 long breaths and on your last exhale, lower your pelvis back down to the floor.

Bridge pose is also known as an inversion, meaning you’re raising your heart higher than your head. This reverses blood flow and aids circulation throughout your body whilst calming your nervous system. This particular posture is also a back bend, aka a heart opener. Through contracting your back muscles and opening your chest, you work to unblock you heart chakra theoretically opening you up to more receptivity of love and intimacy. Inversions and heart openers are paramount to a balanced practice, i.e. one that stimulates all the chakras in your body and forges a stronger connection between mind and body.

If you are new to yoga or you are experiencing some type of injury, go to your local beginner’s yoga class or speak to a certified teacher before attempting these postures to avoid injury.

Another type of asana posture directly linked to your sacral chakra are hip openers. It is believed that you store a lot of emotion and tenseness in your hips –so after the stimulation of this region of your body, you can be left feeling over-emotional. This is again why your practice must be balanced with the more positive-feeling heart openers and twists (though we will get to these).

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Prasarita padattonasana is a great hip opener to practice. Stand on your mat in a wide stance with feet facing inwards (so they are parallel to the edges of your mat). Allow a slight bend in your knees or pull them up and straighten your legs. Place your hands on your hips, turn on your mula bandha and elongate the spine from the crown of your head. Inhale and straighten up, then exhale and bend forward from your hips (it’s a nice idea to place your thumbs at your hip crease to feel yourself hinge forward from here). Ensure your chest stays open as you bend forward by leading with your heart rather than your chin. Stay here for 5 long breaths and on your next inhale, return to a standing position.

This posture works like an inversion regarding the encouragement of bloodflow whilst stimulating your sacral chakra and your root chakra (found at your genitals – encourages the grounding/soothing of your mind). I.e. not only are you increasing your strength and flexibility for when you get jiggy, but you’re also prepping your mind to free itself of any outside worries to totally let go.

If you have any lower back issues or pain please do not bend forward in this position.

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Twists are brilliant for strengthening your lower abdomen (oh hello sacral chakra). For a more relaxing, passive version, sit in a comfortable cross-legged position. You can put cushions under your knees for extra support if you like or sit on one to elevate your hips at an equal height to your knees. As always, tighten your root lock/mula bandha and inhale to lengthen your spine and open up your breathing passages from the crown of your head. Upon your exhale, place the left hand on your right knee and circle your right arm out towards to right placing it on the floor. As you do this open your chest out to the right, twisting your spine and leading with your chest. This twist happens only from the lower ribs and upwards. I.e., your hips and everything below your lower ribs stay put. You are a Russian doll.

Keep your head in line with your top torso rather than reaching your eyes further around (this will cause your head to turn further and strain your neck). Close your eyes softly if you wish and stay for 5 long breaths. To exit the pose, inhale and twist back to the center. Then to decompress your spine (extremely important after more active twists), turn to your left and gently fold forward for a couple of breaths before returning to center. Repeat on the other side.

Some of the major benefits of twists are that they detoxify your system upon the release of your twist (when a rush of fresh blood floods your digestive organs after being cut off during the twist). They keep your spine mobile and calm the mind, which when practiced regularly with the poses we’ve previously mentioned, will have you in the best mental and physical position to start getting things saucy.

Please do not practice a twist like this if you have any slipped discs or lower back problems. Instead, speak to your local certified yoga to find an alternative.

 

Anal Sex Blog Post

A beginners’ guide to anal play

Anal play is one of those things that most people don’t talk about but have a quiet desire to try. It’s sort of taboo, which is a huge turn on, but it’s also something that many people love, making it curious for those who have never tried it. Is in not just painful and messy?

Well, it can be but it shouldn’t be, if that makes sense. Anal play, when done right, is intensely pleasurable and you can orgasm from it.

The trick is to take it slow and steady – it’s not a swimming pool. Don’t throw yourself into it.

Anal play requires preparation, time and lube. Lots of lube.

A common concern about anal sex is the potential for mess, so let’s start there.

The anus and rectum are designed to expel, so if you are going to play in the area, you and your partner need to be prepared for coming into contact with faeces. This is the reality of anal play.

However, there are a few ways of ensuring you get as few surprises as possible:

  • Make sure the person on the receiving end has been to the loo; this is essential and will allow you both to relax.
  • Showering together will start the erotic build-up. Soap up their bottom and rinse off – shower jets over the anus feel very sexy. Dry off gently, and kiss their buttocks.
  • Some people prefer to use douches to feel extra clean. Douches are bulbs that you fill with water and insert into the anus, before expelling the lukewarm water into your body. Using cold water will be painful, and using hot water will scald; body temperature is perfect. The water will flow out in its own time so if you are going to douche, make sure to do this a few hours before play begins.

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Lube for Anal Play

A silicone-based lube is great for skin-on-skin anal play. It’s long-lasting and won’t dry up, and typically doesn’t have any scent or taste. Add a drizzle to your fingers before stroking onto your partner’s butt.

If you’re planning on using silicone toys, or toys with a soft surface, you’ll need to stock up on water-based lube. Water-based lube will sink into the skin so you will need to re-apply, or add some saliva to reactivate lube that’s already been applied.

For extra hygiene, as well as safer sex with or without toys, you might want to get some condoms for anal sex too. If you have long or sharp nails, get some latex gloves to make them smoother – tushies are delicate and you don’t want to snag the thin membranes.

Warming Up

Just like a session at the gym, you need to warm up properly or you could do yourselves an injury.

Take the time to massage your partner’s buttocks, lower back, and upper thighs; the skin is one large erogenous zone, and kneading, touching and stroking will help get you both in the mood for more.

Using your thumbs, glide along the crease from the inner thigh to the outer side and repeat. Next, put your hands in a prayer position on your partner’s tailbone and glide up and down between the buttocks for a sensual and relaxing start to anal play.

Add a little lube to your fingertips and stroke gently around the anal rim. Explore the anal opening without penetrating it.

If you both feel comfortable with it, rimming is a fantastic way to get the anus ready and waiting. Licking, kissing and sucking on all the nerve-endings in the area may make your play partner feel like their brains are melting… Just saying.

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When your partner starts pushing back for more attention, it’s time to ramp it up a bit.

The Happy Hiney Anal Comfort Cream gently relaxes the area, which is perfect for first-timers. Containing no numbing agents, Happy Hiney delivers a tingling sensation, which helps relax tense, nervous muscles and reduce sensations of extra friction.

Note: We don’t recommend using numbing creams for any kind of sexual activity, especially not anal play. Pain is the body’s way of telling you that something is wrong, and overriding this function can have dire consequences. 

If you’re totally new to any type of anal adventure, it’s best to start small. Our Vibrating Silicone Anal Beads are an ideal beginner’s toy as the beads start off small and gradually increase in size, so you can go at your own pace and just enjoy the delicate vibrations.

A butt plug is a small toy that gets inserted for a sensual ‘full’ feeling. Leave the plug in place so they have something to squeeze against. You can wiggle it a little, or slowly move it in and out so the anus pops open and closes again; many peeps enjoy this sensation.
Butt Plugs

Any toy used for anal sex needs to be safe for this type of play; i.e. they must have a flared base or a handle. Using unsafe toys for anal play often ends badly and we don’t want this to happen to you.

This might be as far as you go on this first occasion, but it’s plenty. You want to leave the brain thinking of anal play as something pleasurable, as that’ll make it easier for it to relax the next time.

Many couples who are embarking on anal sex for the first time are keen on getting ‘stuck in’ as soon as possible, but this is often a mistake. Rushing it makes for an uncomfortable or painful experience.

If you’ve decided to go for full penetration, you’ll still need to start as above; building it up slowly helps the body relax and welcome the penis or dildo.

The inside of the anus is a lazy S-shape, so make sure you’re familiar with your partner’s internal curves before dipping in. Visualize their insides and move to accommodate this; this is especially important if you’re using a dildo as you won’t be able to feel resistance or any dry areas.

Keep checking in with your partner. Make sure they’re having a great time, and keep the bond going by kissing and touching.

We tend to recommend the receiving partner is on top when anal play is new for you both. This gives them the freedom to rock, wiggle or just sit still if that’s what feels best. You can get all adventurous and try out different positions later when you both feel more confident.

Prostate Play

The butts of male-bodied peeps have an additional part that enjoys gentle stimulation: the prostate.

The back-door area has long been shrouded in shame and denial, especially for straight men, but we’re delighted to say that the P-spot and its pleasure potential is finally out in the open (about bloomin’ time!).

The prostate has the ability to make its owner multi-orgasmic, and this is well worth exploring. The best book on the subject, in our opinion, is The Ultimate Guide to Prostate Play by Charlie Glickman & Aislinn Emirzian. It covers everything from hygiene to maintaining prostate health to illustrated tips and techniques about achieving supercharged orgasms.

The rules for stimulating a butt with a prostate are the same as the rules for stimulating a butt without a P-spot: Take your time, use lashings of lube, ensure your nails are short & smooth and make sure the person on the receiving end is having the time of their lives!

By following our advice, your bum-fun should be nothing but(t) a good time!

 

Woman-Gold-Glitter

My vagina is a penetration-free zone – here’s why…

Non-penetrative sex.

Yes, it exists. And it can be better than what you might think of as “normal” sex.

Your largest organ is your skin and that skin is packed with erogenous zones all over your body. From your armpit to your knee, arousal can be experienced through different types of stimulation, yet many of us grow up believing that getting busy centers around one action… We’re talking about penis in vagina sex, P-i-V.

The hetero-patriarchal society that typically grooms us has cultivated the belief that sex in its most basic sense involves penetration. Whether that be anal or vaginal, other forms of sexual activity are traditionally regarded as mere precursors to the grande finale. Like the Superhero blockbuster sequel you never asked for, this sequential narrative of a beginning, a middle and an end is anything but penetrating. We find it rather predictable.

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It’s not newsworthy that the majority of women struggle to orgasm through vaginal penetration alone, and without a toy. But who says that you have to have penetrative sex to seal the deal? Often, clitoral simulation provides a sure-fire way to reaching orgasmic peaks. This being the case as long as your mood, the ambiance in the room you’re in, and your overall state of relaxation are all cooperating.

There are many other ways to enjoy yourself once you drop these ideas of sex as a screenplay. Sexual activity is a whole playground of sensation that you can start, end or continue with at any lubed-up point you desire. Placing end goals on sex can do way more harm than good. It can prove exasperating for individuals who experience Vaginisimus or orgasmic/erectile difficulties, for example.

We like to call sexual activity “play” for a reason, and namely, that’s because it doesn’t need a lesson plan. “Play” doesn’t require an erect penis or a moist vaginal canal for it to be erotic and more-ish. “Play” is pleasure-focused and it doesn’t end just because someone had an orgasm – in fact,  sex lasts much longer because typically, everyone involved enjoys as many orgasms as they can handle.

For uterus owners – your vagina may be the most powerful thing you own, but don’t overlook your vulva. Your vulva is important. It deserves unwavering attention in the form of Caring, Loving, Intimate Tenderness (C-L-I-T).

Now, let’s be real. There is no better way to worship your clit than with a suction toy. In a new era of sexual pleasure, these toys are designed to simulate a sucking sensation. Add in a splash of lube and it’ll feel like someone’s lips are tending to your luscious front-garden. Whether you prefer the ultra deluxe Womanizer variety or the more affordable Satisfyer range, suction toys have the critics raving in a matter of minutes.

Zero penetration required.

A common myth we’ve noticed circulating is that penetrative sex is more intimate than other types of sex.

Who decided this?

How exactly did they measure it?

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Our sexperts have never personally whacked out measuring tapes to decipher this. Surely, someone who is keen and willing to smother your backdoor in smooches deserves some credit? A gold star, perhaps! Anything less and it’s surely a slap in the face?

But what is non-penetrative play and how do I do it with a partner?

Good question.

­Non-penetrative play can involve sensual massages, teasing touches and, of course, hours of oral play. You can spend days and days exploring each other’s bodies and getting to know what exactly makes your partner(s) tick. You can rub and grind on each other, kissing deeply, and don’t forget to go to town on breasts and nipples – those are awesome for playing with!

Turn it into a game with the help of one of ours, such as the Tease & Please Kinky Heart game. Take turns to pick out tasks that will leave you begging for more! Use your imagination and embrace exploration. Why not leave the bedroom and fool around in the bathroom, the kitchen, the hall? Buy an O Wand and you’ll forget penetration is even a thing!

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Plus, if you are a vagina-owner and you are self-conscious around the sheets when on your period, you can simply pop in a menstrual cup (see Mooncup or Fun Factory’s Fun Cup) and enjoy yourself stress-free. This is the perfect chance to introduce new, fun games into the mix. Focus your attentions on skin and sensitive areas, take turns to enact sexy activities on each other or role-play saucy fantasies. Invest in some handcuffs and restrain your partner to the bed or explore the art of rope-play…

Removing the pressure of putting one body part into another opens up a world of possibilities. It’s hot and erotic, and it’s likely to boost sexual satisfaction. Whether the reasons for saying ‘no, ta’  to penetration are long-term or short-term, there is only one thing to remember:

There are so many ways to explore your sexuality without ramming a plug in the socket.

Vieness-weekend

Women’s Weekend in Southampton

We are thrilled to announce our participation in the VieNess Women’s Weekend in Southampton on Sunday March 3rd!

Organised by the wonderful Vie Portland, a long-time chamion of women’s causes, the Women’s Weekend is the perfect way to grab some much-needed me-time whilst still having fun.

vieness-logo-purple“I know women are incredible, however, far too frequently, they can’t see that of themselves. With the pressures of society and the high expectations they put on themselves, they too often don’t realise how incredible they are.

A lot of my work is around helping women see how amazing they are and, for a quick, fun, relaxing burst, these weekends are ideal. If you feel like you want a weekend with girlfriends, or a weekend away from everyone you know, time for you to reconnect with who you truly are, need a boost to feel good about yourself, want to learn new skills in a friendly and supportive environment, these weekends are for you.”

Taking place at the beautiful Chilworth Manor Hotel on the outskirts of Southampton, there’ll be plenty of time to access the Chilworth Manor spa (count us in!). Spend the time in the hot tub, lounge on a recliner with a good book and a face mask, steam in the sauna, or book a treatment with the special 15% discount.

Also included in the price are the meals; the hotel does great food and are more than willing to adapt menus to suit dietary requirements.

Workshops

There are several workshops for you to attend, all included in the price, and the fabulous women listed below will share their expertise and ensure you get the most out of your weekend:

Vie-Portland-smlVie Portland is a body positivity and self-esteem coach, Body Image Movement Global Ambassador, an international burlesque performer, and winner of the Inspiring Person in Burlesque Award (twice). Vie uses her psychology and counselling background alongside her lived experience to help and encourage women to see how incredible they are. Vie will be facilitating a body positivity workshop and a burlesque workshop.

Vie is the organizer of this weekend retreat and many others like it. She is available for a number of confidence-boosting talks, classes & workshops. 

 


Renee-Spanking-smlOur very own Renée award-winning Store Manager & Sexulity Educator at Sh! will be facilitating the Sex Positivity workshop on Sunday 3rd of March, sharing lots of fun tips & tricks for making the most out of your potential for pleasure.

An expert in her field, Renee is the go-to advisor for various media outlets and is regularly invited to share her pearls of wisdom at events hosted by organisations such as Positively UK, My Body Back Project and Women’s Institute.

Renée is available for a long list of events such as hen-do’s, divorce-do’s, birthday parties and age-appropriate sex ed classes for teenagers. Please email queries to:  Events@sh-womenstore.com


Becki-ShortBecki Short is a professional singing teacher with a passion for helping people discover their voice. She believes everyone can sing and uses music to connect all ages and abilities. Becki will be facilitating the Singing for Confidence workshop. Find out more about Becki and the work she does on her website: www.beckishort.co.uk

 

 


Tracy-Rigney-SmlTracy Rigney is a dance and fitness instructor and strongly believes everyone’s lives can be made happier and healthier through dance and fitness. Tracy will be running a Boogie Bounce class; she says Boogie Bounce is a fab, fun and funky exercise on a mini trampoline. Find out more about Tracy and her business The Fitness Fairy on her website: www.tracyfitnessfairy.co.uk

 

 


Tickets & Pricing

Saturday daytime only, including lunch: £80
Saturday daytime and evening, including lunch and dinner: £100
Sunday daytime only, including afternoon tea: £60
Weekend cost, to include all activities and meals:
shared room £230 (this works out at less than £8 an hour for the weekend!!);
single supplement £280.
For Friday evening dinner, a room, and breakfast on Saturday, the whole weekend will be £280 shared room and £330 for single occupancy.

Spaces for the Women’s Weekend are extremely limited so make sure to book your ticket now if you want to join us for some relaxation & fun!

 

BOOK HERE: Please email: vie@vieness.co.uk to book onto the weekend.

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LOL-Word-Blog-POst

The LOL Word Comedy Night at Sh!

Like comedy? Like queer women?

Then you’ll love The LOL Word!

That’s right: your favourite LGBTQ+ women and non-binary comedians, The LOL Word, are descending upon London’s finest sex emporium Sh! for a night of raucous, inclusive, sex-positive and hilarious comedy.

Not only will you see the comedy scene’s finest award-winning queer talent, but you’ll also get to spend the evening surrounded by solid gold pure smut with 10% OFF ALL PRODUCTS for ticket holders!

Comedians for the night include the entire LOL Word originals (Chloe Petts, Jodie Mitchell, Shelf, and Chloe Green) plus the most special of SPECIAL GUESTS…


Tickets are extremely limited so grab yours now to avoid disappointment!

Arrive at 6:30pm to start shopping with that sweet 10% DISCOUNT and the show starts at 7pm prompt.


So who are LOL then?

A bunch of best mates and accolade-brimming comedians, providing London, Manchester, Brighton, Edinburgh and beyond with the best LGBTQ+ comedy talent there is. Founded by Chloe Green, Jodie Mitchell, Chloe Petts and sketch duo Shelf, they pull together the very best talent the scene has to offer, to save you the faff. Previous line-ups have included Sofie Hagen, Fern Brady, Sophie Duker, Kemah Bob, Sarah Keyworth, Rosie Jones andmaaany more babes.

Shelf

Shelf are a comedy double act from South London.

Shelf is made up of Rachel WD and Ruby Clyde. Already lifelong friends, they started performing as Shelf in 2015. Shelf started out at open mic nights, honing a style that is “a winning hybrid of sketch show and standup” (Edfringe Review).

Since their formation, Shelf have performed at Bestival, London Pride, and been nominated for Sketchfest’s Best New Act award. Their work has appeared on BBC3 and LADBible. They are founding members of sell-out monthly night The LOL Word, which showcases queer women and non-binary comedians from across the London comedy circuit. They are board members of the cult hit Alternative Comedy Memorial Society, with whom they regularly perform in London and Edinburgh.

Shelf
The Skinny – “…cool and relevant”

Diva Magazine – “The talented twosome find belly laughs in heavyweight topics like mental health, sexuality and gender

The Broad UK – “What makes their show really stand out is the crackling chemistry between their on stage personae”

The Daily Info – “Everything they do is organic and fresh…the audience is given permission to join in with their friendship: they let us in to their lives, flaunting their flaws and thus showcasing their qualities. Their honesty encourages laughing along and their comic timing ensures it”

Bunbury Publishing – “The chemistry between Rachel and Ruby absolutely sparkled, from the writing to the performance, page to stage, everything feeds into each other perfectly. I will repeat, Shelf are going to be huge”

Scotsgay – “Lesbians”

Jodie Mitchell

Jodie-MitchellJodie Mitchell is a ‘blindingly obvious comedic talent’ (The Skinny) doing her best to simultaneously be as surreal and political as possible. In 2018, she was a ‘Funny Woman Awards’ Finalist, a ‘Leicester Square New Comedian of the Year’ Semi-Finalist, and shortlisted for the ‘BBC New Comedy Award’.  She has a hit comedy podcast, ‘Secret Dinosaur Cult’, which she co-hosts with Sofie Hagen, and is currently touring a new show as her male comedian alter-ego with the Drag King troupe ‘Pecs’, after a 5*, Offie-nominated, sell-out run at Soho Theatre. Jodie’s supported by Soho Theatre Young Company, and is a founding member of queer, all women and non-binary comedy collective ‘The Lol Word’.  If you’re her mate, then you laughed at her shouldering butchness to don a denim mini-skirt in BBC Scotland’s ‘Scotsquad’.

‘Jodie Mitchell…left me with actual tears of laughter running down my face’ – DIVA
‘[Her] set is so funny it makes all the comedy in my life up to this point redundant’ – Theatrebubble

Chloe Petts

Chloe Petts’ “inexhaustibly funny mind” (Diva Magazine) and “compelling presence” (Steve Bennett, Chortle) has established her as one of the most exciting new acts on the circuit.

Chloe-Petts
Chloe is an alumna of the prestigious Pleasance Comedy Reserve, has been shortlisted for the BBC Comedy Award, was a finalist in the most recent Leicester Square New Comedian of the Year Awards and came runner-up in the Funny Women Awards 2017.

She has appeared on Channel 4’s Random Acts and BBC 3 Quickies.

Chloe Green

Chloe-GreenChloe Green is a queer comedian who makes jokes about life as a Labour Party staffer and the patriarchy. Sounds like a misnomer? It’s Ms. Nomer, thanks very much.

When she takes time off from being a “f*cking delicate snowflake”, Chloe likes to make jokes. Because her job staffing Labour’s Twitter account and navigating the minefield of sexism and homophobia in politics is surprisingly funny. Sharp political commentary meets confessional storytelling as Chloe tells us what it’s like to be “out” on the inside of the UK’s weirdest workplace.

Chloe is a co-founder of queer comedy collective The LOL Word, which had a sell-out run at the Edinburgh Fringe 2018. She’s also a member of the Soho Theatre Young Company, was named one of the top lesbian and bi comedians to watch out for by Pink News in 2018, and was a Semi-Finalist in the BBC New Comedy Award 2018.

As seen on LADBible and Pink News, seen at Latitude, heard on BBC Radio 4 Extra.

“Smart, insightful, hilarious, and completely relatable” – DIVA magazine.

“a quickfire stream of jokes that bounce pleasingly around a wide field of crowd-winning topics” – Bechdel Theatre

About LOL Word:

The Guardian: “a new generation of comics retaliating against the old template of comedy”
DIVA: “Smart, insightful, hilarious, and completely relatable”
Sofie Hagen: “My favourite comedy night in London”
Bechdel Theatre: “THE night to go to”

Hemp-Lube-Blog-Post

Orgie’s Natural High: Hemp Seed Oil Lube

You wanted it – you got it!

Due to popular demand, we have searched high and low for our favourite hemp seed oil infused lubricant. Not only that, but we’ve gone and found an orgasm enhancer as well.

Wait…hemp oil in a sex product?

If you find yourself a tad bemused by this combo then simply read on to find out more. Perhaps, the Hemp Lube Tube could become your new slippery staple!

Scent and taste-free, the Orgie Hemp Lube feels smooth and lovely to use. As it’s a water-based formula, it’s suitable for use with all of your favourite toys as well. Just so you know though, the lube has a green tinge, which makes good sense when you think about it, but might raise an eyebrow or two when you squeezing some out and start applying to erotic areas…

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If you want to switch things up a little bit more, there is also a hemp oil orgasmic gel to try.

Just one small squirt onto the intended intimate area (suitable for poons, peens and in-betweens) will deliver multiple lovely sensations such as tingling, heating, and cooling. By encouraging blood flow to the area, this increases sensitivity and stimulation, meaning that orgasms are about to get toe-curlingly intense. Yas please!

The orgasm gel also has a green tinge (we see a pattern here) and it has a slight taste; nothing unpleasant, but it does make your tongue fizzle a bit.

What is hemp seed oil?

Hemp seed oil is one of three categories of hemp oil, with the other two being hemp essential oil and CBD oil. All three are sourced from specific parts of the hemp plant, aka cannabis sativa. Although often confused for CBD oil, hemp seed oil differs in that it comes mainly from hemp seeds (hence the name). These seeds have significantly lower amounts of cannabinoids in comparison to any other part of the plant. This means that despite sharing a lot of the same vitamins, minerals, and natural acids as CBD oil, hemp seed oil won’t make you remotely high…so instead, we’ll leave that up to your partner.

What’s more, as long as the type of hemp oil comes from one of the 63 industrially approved hemp strains under EU law, then it is totally legal. These oils are classed as hemp when containing less than 0.2% of THC (the psychoactive cannabinoid) – if above this level then they are officially classed as cannabis and are illegal. So don’t worry, we are not about to get you arrested.

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What are the benefits?

There are many widely recognised health benefits of hemp seeds. For one, they are nutritious – even more so than the favourites of numerous East London health stores: chia or flaxseeds. Specifically, they are mega-high in fatty acids and proteins and are considered to be a complete protein source, similar to quinoa. This means that they are packed with natural acids, such as amino acids. Altogether, hemp seeds are thought to boost your immune system and are better for you than a wide range of nuts and veg. Their high level of gamma-linolenic acid (GLA) has even been linked to aiding the physical and emotional symptoms of PMS and menopause due to the reaction between GLA’s production of prostaglandin E1 with the bodily hormone prolactin (it’s your body’s reaction to this hormone that causes such issues). This can reduce breast tenderness, plateauing moods and fluid retention amongst other symptoms.

A quick google and you can find numerous vitamins and minerals that hemp seeds are well endowed in.

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What has all this nutritional information got to do with sex? Is Sh! converting into a wellness blog?

No, we are not. But, these benefits do mean a great deal for your downstairs sex demons – vaginas especially. The amino acids that are found both within hemp seed oil and the vagina are specialised to balance PH levels and avoid infection inside your intimate area. The less lubed-up your vaginal walls are during any sort of penetrative play, the more likely you are to contract a yeast infection, a UTI or to irritate the skin with fissures – causing a breeding ground for bacteria and infection. The natural properties of hemp seed oil moisturise and soothe skin whilst being anti-inflammatory.

But what about oral play?

The above rules still apply; the more slippery your sex is, the more fun it’s going to be! Adding lube is a great way of ensuring all areas feel moist and lovely. You might think that saliva is enough and sometimes it is; however, we often find that a few drops of lube make things even smoother and if fingers are being inserted into orifices then lube is – in our opinion – essential.

Happy Hemping, people!