There's a few recurring questions we get asked a lot here at Sh! - here's the answer to one of them.
I've been looking for some women-friendly porn for ages - something hardcore and hot, but not the usual man-focussed stuff where it's all about the man.
I've noticed you have some female-focussed DVDs, but they are all rated 18 and not R18. Why is that?
Thanks for your query. There's a couple of reasons we aren't able to supply R18 DVDs to our customers - much as we'd like to. At Sh! we believe that if you want to watch hot films that's up to you, but we're stuck with some antiquated laws which mean we're restricted in what we can sell.
Restrictions on DVD's
DVDs which show penetration or ejaculation are rated as R18, and anything with an R18 certificate is covered by different laws.
Here at Sh! HQ where we run the Mail-Order side of the business, we're not able to send out R18 DVDs through the post, since it's actually illegal in this country (though many websites do it anyway).
So what about in the shop? Only a licensed Sex Shop can sell R18 films, and we've chosen not to get a license at our Hoxton Store at the moment. Not because the fee is pretty heavy - we'd happily pay it to be able to supply our customers with what they like - but because we'd also have to change our door policy. Licensed Sex Shops can't allow anyone under the age of 18 onto their premises, which would mean banning mums with tots from the premises.
Sex Shop Accessible to Mothers
One of the things we really want to do at Sh! is keep it accessible for all women - and we're not gonig to ban mothers with youngsters. We reckon it's up to mums to decide if the non-graphic, non-scary, atmosphere of Sh! is ok for their baby or toddler, which is why we haven't got the Sex Shop License, which would take that decision out of our hands.
We'd also have to put up a sign at the door warning that we have 'obscene material' within. We're proud of our selection of goodies at Sh! and don't think they're 'obscene' - and guilt-tripping our lovely customers at the door isn't quite our style either.
But here's the good news
In the last few years, some really lovely female-focused, certificate 18 porn has been made. We're really liking the work of Anna Span, Britain's first female porn director, whose hot DVDs offer a genuine female point of view, guys who are hot not just well-endowed, and best of all, women who look like they're in control and having fun!
We're also very keen on Petra Joy, whose 'Sensual Seduction' is a different style of erotic DVD - she uses dream-sequences and lots of props to create the ultimate sensual seduction, based on real women's fantasies and starring real-life lovers.
Hope this helps explain the reasoning behind our policy. Please do give us a shout with any more questions.