I started this blog because there just really isn’t a good, honest dialog and resource out there for male masturbation. I mean, where IS the hitachi wand for men?! All of the reviews we read feel like advertorials that aren’t in any way convincing that the toy was somehow ‘Better Than The Hand.’ More importantly, reviews are generally technical but reveal nothing about the experience the toy offers and the various creative ways a toy can be used. After trying a couple of the ‘best selling’ and ‘top rated’ products, I was sorely (in some cases, literally) disappointed; besides, men (particularly straight men) just don’t share stories about masturbation and toys the way women do, and someone’s got to be the font of wisdom for the curious but leaderless masses. So I gathered a couple of my friends who are both avid, unabashed masturbators as well as articulate writers, and we decided it was time to up-and-masturbate and tell everyone else about our experiences. While we don’t have degrees in human sexuality, we conducted a comprehensive poll and found that not only do we masturbate far more than average, but we have a unique understanding and passion for it.
When I started my journey, I expected to buy a toy and have some new and peak orgasmic experience. I imagined something like the Orgasmatron in Woody Allen’s Sleeper (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Isrd7E5nzIQ) — I’d just stick my cock in and WHAM! massive orgasm! I’d be squirming and writhing about, just like my girlfriend does when she uses her vibrator. But it wasn’t like that. My first time was pretty awkward. I had this sad rubbery tube with fake pussy lips that was supposed to surpass that feeling of slipping into a hot wet pussy?! Of course it didn’t — and therein lies the sad truth: for women, a vibrator buzzing near her clit is often more stimulating and satisfying than penetration, but for men, there is no toy better than lubed entry into real human flesh. If you have that mindset, if you’re expecting your toy to approach or surpass the real thing, you’re setting yourself up for disappointment — and you’re missing out on the amazing experiences that only toys can provide.
That said, can toys for men surpass the perfect, god-given gift of a good, analog stroke? That was the question — ‘is it better than the hand?’ — I wanted to answer, and the hard-earned scars of my journey and others’ are now available to you, pain-free.
I am in the very lucky situation of having easy access to a treasure-chest of product, so I can try (and give my willing and articulate readers access to) just about anything. I also don’t want to personally review every product ever released, so I’m hoping for some avid masturbatory scientists to help me out. I’m less interested in reviews of toys, however, and more interested in discussion of techniques that involve toys. I want to discuss HOW we get off, with which toys, and what we do to achieve the best result. I want to discuss how to use toys in tandem and how to progress from one to another or move back and forth. but the main thing is, I want to move away from the idea of ‘sex toys’ and towards the idea of how they facilitate an experience. What works for one person might not work for another — that’s why I’m interested in a variety of perspectives.
I find that there are general categories of masturbators that you need to know about, and there are certain toys I’m particularly interested in. My goal is to describe the basic world of enhancers, and to invite those who have particular interests in toys to contribute to the growing body of knowledge here and encourage others to branch out — who knows what might happen when you discover your prostate?!
1+1 = 3
One of the keys for men to enjoy toys is to view them as enhancers that provide variation and complement the near-perfect design of our built-in source of sexual joy: the hand. When used in conjunction with other toys and good porn, toys can provide strong orgasms and enable rapid repeat performance, where the hand alone may leave you chafed and numb, and most likely result in a quick one-and-done experience. Popping a prostrate buzzer in while slipping a warm, slick Fleshlight on as your favorite video fires up can be a hard experience to…um…beat. The key is to have multiple toys readily available as you progress. You might want the pressure and friction of a soft sleeve for a while, then switch to your hand, then pop into the Fleshlight, then watch your cock grow and veins pop in a penis-pump. It’s about altering stimulation easily, quickly and enjoyably to create the most diverse and pleasurable stroke you can. While i’m sure there are some heroic performers out there, it’s only with the use of toys that I’m able to rip one off, and then pull one off again, and again; the hand alone just can’t do that. Variety in texture and temperature are critical to keep the party going.
And this is not only about self pleasure: it’s about how creative stroking can lead to creative sex with others. Understanding how to enjoy an erotic build and then recover quickly parlays into better sex with your partner. It’s also about broadening your idea of stimulation. Most men have a ‘just stick it in the hole’ mentality. but if you allow yourself to enjoy the variety of different types of stimulation that toys can provide, you’ll not only have some great, slow-building sexual highs, you’ll also learn to enjoy a more circuitous and exploratory route to orgasm — which your lover will not only appreciate, but celebrate.
So as you read some of the descriptions of basic styles of toys, the many ways they can be used, and the experiences they can create, don’t look for ‘the right toy,’ look for the right combinations of toys and video to raise the mast and sail west into the horizon. It will take some time and experimentation to find the right arrows for your quiver, but don’t worry — most of these toys are pretty affordable. I’ve also found that a toy that didn’t initially work for me later emerged as one of my favorites when used in new ways.
Like everything, setting and mood is key. I like to find a time of day when I know I won’t be disturbed and a place that’s very comfortable, like a large bed (it helps if it’s also a place where you don’t have to worry about making a mess). If I’m on my bed, I like to lie on a large towel, and I always have a hand towel available to remove lube from my hands and anything else that needs a wipe. Then add a few toys and some good porn, and you’re off.
‘Better Than The Hand’ is intended to be interactive, so please contact me directly at firstname.lastname@example.org with feedback and don’t hesitate to comment on reviews and tell us about creative ways to get more out of the toys (or better yet, point us to new toys and creative uses)!
Magnus Sullivan has been at the forefront of technological and cultural shifts for more than 20 years. In 1993 Magnus founded eLine, one of the first system integration firms in San Francisco, bringing some of the biggest brands in the world online. One of his first clients was the storied progressive adult toy reseller, Good Vibrations. This was his first foray into the world of adult and he never looked back, partnering with the powerhouse, Game Link, to help create one of the most formidable companies in the online adult market. He has created two of the most awarded and recognized movies in the adult industry (‘An Open Invitation’ and ‘Marriage 2.0', which won The Feminist Porn Awards coveted ‘Movie of the Year’ award in 2016) and recently launched www.manshop.com, a reseller of sex toys for men, and www.betterthanthehand.com, a sex positive blog that promotes male masturbation and discusses the various social issues associated with it. Sullivan has written extensively about the need to expand and enhance content production in the adult industry and is also the author of ‘Better Than The Hand: How Masturbation is the Key to Better Sex and Healthier Living’. He is a fourth-generation SF-native, lives with his wife and children in the San Francisco Bay Area and enjoys kite boarding, skiing, triathlon, cooking, reading, writing and just about everything else that engages his mind and his body.35 Articles