• Community,  Industry spotlight,  Interviews,  Musings

    Behind the curtain at Whoopee! A Sex-Positive Variety Show

    If you’re a follower of She Bop, you’ve probably noticed we have some very creative and talented folks on our staff. One of those people is our Education Coordinator, Amory Jane, and she has a popular new sex-themed stage show. It’s called Whoopee! A Sex-Positive Variety Show, and the next one is coming up this Friday, April 21st. We spoke with her about the origins of Whoopee!, what audience members can expect, and why the community needs a show like this one. What exactly is Whoopee! A Sex-Positive Variety Show?  Whoopee! is a once-a-month live stage show that I started in December of 2016. The theme is that all acts are sex-positive, body-positive, or about human sexuality. From the comedy…

  • Musings

    The past and future of edible sex products

    Candypants edible underwear

    Edible underwear wasn’t supposed to be a real thing. It was an off-hand joke that blossomed between two Chicago artists (Lee Brady and David Sanderson) in 1972, as they sat around discussing the phrase “eat my shorts.” What if someone’s shorts were literally edible? They cobbled together an interpretation and displayed it in the window of a friend’s shop as a piece of concept art, a conversation-starter. Then a student at the University of Indiana bought it and wrote about it for a local paper with AP syndication. Put in today’s terms, edible underwear went viral. Then it became real. In “A Matter of Taste: Inside the Edible Sex Toy Industry,” writer…

  • Musings

    Writing a disabled perspective into erotica

    [Note: Xan West does not use pronouns and goes by “Xan.”] Language is powerful. It has the ability to enhance and validate someone’s experience, just as it has the ability to invalidate. Erotica writers are especially imbued with this influence, as their work requires them to describe bodies, sexual acts, and lived experiences more intimately than most. Unfortunately, much erotica presumes a default subject: a white, young, able-bodied cisgender person. Xan West is the author of Show Yourself to Me: Queer Kink Erotica, a collection of 24 BDSM-focused stories that subvert the traditional narrative and strive for more diverse character representation. Xan is also a disabled top and writes many stories from a top’s point of view. In efforts…

  • Musings

    Why you shouldn’t buy sex toys on Amazon

    Lightning-fast shipping, a staggering selection of products, and extremely competitive prices make Amazon one of the most popular online shopping websites in the world. It isn’t surprising, then, that consumers would consider Amazon an option for sex toy purchases. However, according to a recent article by Vanessa Marin on Lifehacker, buying a sex toy on Amazon is not a sound choice — for reasons that you may and may not expect. The first reason is the proliferation of counterfeit products. Marin reports that high-end sex toy manufacturers such as LELO, We-Vibe, njoy, and Tenga have all fallen victim to this practice. It’s so common for companies to rip off the Magic Wand that the product’s…

  • Musings

    Bringing sex toys to Chileans

    Here in the states, at-home sex toy parties have been around for decades — at least since the 1970s — and feminist sex shops have been in existence just as long. But in conservative Santiago, Chile, these are novel concepts. Jane Morgan, a young woman from Missouri, is one driving force behind a recent shift in Chilean sexual culture. During her college years at Washington University, she spent a semester abroad studying Spanish in Santiago. After graduating, she settled there in an office job… but her business-oriented mind came up with a side gig: throwing private sex toy parties. Morgan had noticed that none of her chilena friends owned vibrators. To help them, she ordered…

  • Musings,  Reviews

    Amory Jane tries the Womanizer

    Womanizer

    The Womanizer is a very strange sex toy. With its regrettable name and gaudy design, we weren’t sure what to think of it. It promises a unique functionality — gentle suction directly on the clitoris — but would it deliver? We sent a tester home with one of our staff to get the scoop. I am pleasantly surprised by the Womanizer. I don’t really understand how it works as well as it does or how I could like it so much. I mean, just look at the thing. It looks like an ear thermometer. It is tacky as all get out. The name is terrible. The case is the Pepto-Bismol pink. The…

  • Musings

    Finally, inclusive children’s sex ed books

    What do sex ed books for kids look like without assumptions about gender, sexuality, race, size, and ability? They look a lot like Cory Silverberg’s What Makes a Baby and Sex is a Funny Word. Being inclusive means never showing a whole body naked from head to toe. It means conditional words such as “some,” “most,” “usually,” and “often” — not absolutes. It means giving the clitoris and the penis an equal word count. It means not attaching the words “woman” and “man” (or “mommy” and “daddy”) to specific types of bodies. It means leaving space for discussion. It means illustrations that present a world of color, of joy, and of difference. It means moving beyond a man…

  • Industry spotlight,  Musings

    When dildos came out of the closet

    In the 1970s, dildos were a point of contention in the feminist movement. A 1974 issue of Lesbian Tide warned: “anyone admitting to using a dildo today would probably be verbally castigated for enjoying ‘phallic’ pleasure.” Some activists thought dildos were too reminiscent of the patriarchy. Others felt that since dildos specifically didn’t require men, using them could actually be a subversive act. The debate was more about what the dildo represented than precisely how it looked, but looks mattered too. Hyper-realistic vein-ridden dildos were the order of the day, and they tended to emit a strong chemical scent. It would still be a long time before the harms of plasticizers such as phthalates would…

  • Musings

    Re-learning orgasm

    Headlines are funny sometimes. “A Trans Woman Learns To Masturbate” is the title the piece was given on Eros Media, yet such a statement ignores the unique, languid writing style of author Jetta Rae. It also simplifies the myriad issues Rae explores — beyond just masturbation, beyond just being trans. Rae begins by addressing the societal assumptions surrounding masturbation. Masturbation is a safe, healthy time for personal exploration and fantasy — in fact, a time that can be transformative — yet the act is often derided and misrepresented in ways small and large. For instance, the word “masturbatory” is used when someone is acting self-absorbed, relying on the (incorrect) belief that masturbation comes easily for everyone.…

  • Musings

    Shine Louise Houston’s latest queer venture

    Many in the adult industry are familiar with Shine Louise Houston’s work. She’s the founder of Pink & White Productions, which has been in operation for 10 years. She’s the mastermind behind The Crash Pad, a porn series about a secretive San Francisco apartment where queer folks go to have spectacular sex. Her other films, Superfreak, The Wild Search, and Champion, have all won numerous accolades. Along the way, Houston has always kept focus on what matters to her: representing queer communities and queer communities of color. Houston’s latest project is SNAPSHOT, a not-so-typical queer love story for which she’s currently seeking crowdfunding. The film will be an erotic suspense thriller with two women of color as…