The lowdown on kegel exercises

Of all the muscles that comprise the pelvic floor, the pubococcygeus muscles are probably the most famous. The pubococcygeus muscles (more well-known as the PC muscles) run from the pubic bone to the tailbone, and form a sort of figure eight around the genitals. All people have PC muscles, and these muscles are instrumental in sexual response — in fact, they involuntarily contract during orgasm, and help to propel ejaculate.

In the forties, a gynecologist named Dr. Arnold Kegel developed the idea of exercising the PC muscles, and the concept of kegel exercises was born. Although Kegel was primarily focused on treating urinary incontinence, one of his papers did mention off-handedly that “sexual appreciation can be increased by restoring function of the pubococcygeus.” Indeed, kegel exercises are now largely associated with sexuality, and for good reason — doing them regularly has many sexual benefits.

Kegel exercise generally consists of voluntarily and repetitively contracting and relaxing the PC muscles. Many associate kegel exercise with a tighter vagina, but that is just one perk of toned PC muscles. Regular kegel exercise can have a variety of pleasurable effects, such as heightened sexual sensitivity, stronger orgasms, and greater response to G-spot stimulation. The more the PC muscles are toned, the more they can relax, so kegels are great for those wanting to have anal sex, or for anyone experiencing difficulty with penetration. With kegel practice and repetition, some vagina owners can even learn to ejaculate/squirt.

For people with penises, toned PC muscles can result in improved ejaculatory control, somewhat firmer erections, and a shorter refractory period (the span of time between ejaculations).

Kegel excercises can be extremely helpful during pregnancy and after birth as well. Kegels are well-known for facilitating excellent bladder control, so they can ease problems with urinary incontinence. Strengthened PC muscles can also prepare the pelvic floor for childbirth, and may help prevent tearing and episiotomy. After birth, regular exercise of the PC muscles can accelerate postpartum healing, restoring tightness and muscle tone in the vagina.

Finding ’em and toning ’em

Locate your PC muscles by pretending that you are peeing and want to stop the flow of urine. The muscles that you contract are your PC muscles. To further increase your awareness of your PC muscles, you may want to insert two fingers into your vagina, squeeze with your PC muscles, then relax. Keep in mind that the relaxation motion is just as important as the tightening.

Here are some examples of simple kegel exercises. These can be done anywhere, in any position, during any activity you wish. Some people may prefer to do them while masturbating, watching porn, reading erotica, etc., but they can also be executed just as effectively while standing in line at the bank, at the computer checking Facebook, or in your car at a stoplight.

  • Inhale and imagine that you are sucking water up into your vagina and anus. Hold it there for a moment, then exhale and bear down, pushing the imaginary water out.
  • Contract and release your PC muscles several times in a row, each time gradually increasing how tightly you squeeze.
  • Inhale, then quickly squeeze and release your PC muscles 5-10 times before exhaling.
  • If you’d like to work the back part of the PC muscle loop specifically, contract and release your anus. Repeat this five times, taking care to only squeeze your anus — not your butt, thighs, or abs. The relaxation portion of this exercise is vital, so take your time releasing between squeezes.

With some time and repetition of these exercises, your PC muscles will be strengthened and toned nicely. If you’d like to go a step further in exercising your kegels, we have just the thing for you: sex toys!

Toys, toys, toys… in the vagina

Some people enjoy incorporating sex toys into their kegel exercises because toys provide a form of resistance. At She Bop, we carry a few types of kegel exercisers. One type consists of a small ball or two that can be inserted into the vagina and held in place (the AmiLuna Beads, Smartballs Teneo Duo and Smartballs Teneo Uno fall into this category). For traditional kegel exercises, lube up the balls and insert one or both into your vagina. While grasping the toy with your PC muscles, gently tug on the retrieval string. The resistance provided by the tugging will enhance the exercise.

However, these balls really beg to be worn discreetly. Once inserted comfortably in the vagina, they can be left there as you go about your day. Each ball contains a smaller inner ball that will roll around and lightly vibrate as you move around (and don’t worry, nobody will hear them!). You can also squeeze your PC muscles around these balls when they are inside you — if you squeeze tightly enough, you just might feel the inner balls shiver in response.

Another type of kegel excercisor is simply a weighted dildo. Some toys — like the Energie, which weighs a pound — are made specifically for toning kegels. Others — like the aircraft-grade aluminum Classic Aluminum or stainless steel njoy Fun Wand — are made of weighty materials that are ideal for kegels. After the toy is inserted vaginally, the action of squeezing/releasing the toy exercises the PC muscles. Start with the larger end of the toy and work your way up to the more difficult smaller end. You can use the same exercise techniques detailed above with these toys.


Full-Bodied Fellatio

Thursday, April 21st — 7:30pm — $20

What do you do when your partner lacks blowjob skills? Where do you go for training when you wish to improve your own? Here!

M. Makael Newby is a relationship coach and dance instructor with a particular skill for breaking physical action into components and teaching them with enthusiasm… and blowjobs are one of her favorite things. This class will educate both the givers and receivers. Come learn about creating anticipation, communication, preparing for success, hand skills, tongue tricks, prostate massage, deep throating, sloppy BJs, choking and forced gagging for both bio and strap-on penises. Live demo (on dildo) included.

Many of these techniques are included in My Erotic Adventure, her choose-your-own styled erotic novel, now available at She Bop. Get empowered to give and receive extraordinary head!

This class has already taken place. Thanks for attending!


Mom’s Sex Diary: Your Pregnancy to Their Puberty

How Raising Kids Changes Your Sex Life… and Foretells Theirs

Saturday, April 30th — 7pm — $25

Susie Bright opens up the sexual revolution of parenthood, from when you first become pregnant, to the baby and little kid years — and finally, the real marathon: kids reaching puberty and you hitting menopause.

What’s a sex-positive mom to do? There’s your own life as a lover and a mother, and then there’s seeing your children develop their own sexual perceptions and values.

Yes, this IS the place to talk about things you won’t hear on Oprah! There’s physical and practical information to share, and emotional and ethical questions that can’t be ignored. What are the most important things you can do, as a parent, to give your children sexual sanity? How do you nurture and enjoy your own mojo as the years go by? Come with your questions— Susie has plenty more, plus some answers you won’t hear anyplace else.

Susie Bright is the author of the national bestsellers Full Exposure and The Sexual State of the Union, as well as The Best American Erotica and Herotica series, which ushered in women’s erotic publishing. She is the host of Audible’s In Bed With Susie Bright, the longest-running sex-ed show in the history of broadcasting. She was co-founder and editor of On Our Backs magazine, and was the first journalist to cover erotic cinema and the porn business in the mainstream press. A progenitor of the sex-positive movement, Bright taught the first university course on pornography, and brought lasting sexual influence to her role in films like Bound and The Celluloid Closet, as well as playing herself, “the famous feminist sex writer,” on Six Feet Under.

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Winner of the blog launch giveaway

Our blog launch giveaway was a roaring success! We received tons and tons of amazing suggestions for topics to tackle on this blog. To everyone who entered, thank you so much. We appreciate your support and your ideas, and we hope you will continue to read our blog posts in the future.

A winner was randomly chosen from the list of entrants, and that winner is Sarah, who chose a deep rose LELO Gigi as her prize. Congratulations, Sarah! We hope you adore Gigi as much as we do.


Exploring Burlesque: Striptease Salon

Wednesday, March 16th — 7:15 p.m. — $15

Have you ever wanted to rock your boa? Peel your stocking? Shimmy your hips? Get your glamour puss on because this class is for you! Join Portland’s Queen of the Tease, Madison Moone, for Striptease Salon, a flirty evening of classic bump and grind perfect for beginners or just the curious.

Students will be guided through a sexy burlesque movement study including bumps, grinds and struts, followed by a tantalizing round of peeling techniques and prop dancing. We will also explore classic burlesque characters before constructing a series of short teases as a group. Together, we will discover a deeper sense of our personal erotic beings while developing a greater appreciation of our feminine power!

Students should dress in comfortable clothes such a yoga or dance wear. Please bring your favorite heels, your prettiest bra and a zip up or button down blouse for layering. Music and demo props will be provided by Miss Moone. All levels of fitness welcome, no dance experience or nudity required. Please avoid alcohol consumption before attending and arrive by 7:15pm – class will begin promptly at 7:30pm, no late entrance after 7:45pm. Also no photographs are permitted. There will be time for shopping after the class!

Grab your best girlfriends and join Miss Moone for and evening of fun, laughs and celebration of the female spirit. See you in class!

Limited space available – call She Bop to reserve your spot – 503.473.8018

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Blog launch giveaway — win a LELO Gigi!

We’re ready to celebrate!

The She Bop Blog has been in existence for just a few short months. So far, we’ve published a couple posts answering the oft-asked questions “Can I become addicted to my vibrator?” and “What are phthalates?”, we’ve listed our top sexy picks for Valentine’s Day and holiday stocking stuffers, and we’ve shown you how to choose and wear a cock ring.

We’re looking forward to building our blog up even more as a resource on sex toys and sexuality. Now, to commemorate our blog’s first months — and its exciting future! — we’re giving away this beauty.

This is the LELO Gigi — a consistent bestseller in our shop, and all-around awesome luxury vibrator. Gigi is a moderately-sized, rechargeable vibrator with a uniquely-shaped tip that can be used clitorally or against the G-spot. Gigi has a variety of vibration speeds and patterns to suit every taste. It comes in turquoise, light pink, and deep rose, and the winner gets their choice of color!

How to enter

Mandatory entry

  • Leave a comment on this post telling us about a topic, question, or issue you’d like to see us tackle on the She Bop Blog.

Optional entries

Each of these earns you one extra entry. You must comment on this post when you do any of these, or you will not receive the extra entries.

  • Follow us on Twitter.
  • Tweet about this giveaway (one extra entry per tweet, with a maximum of five). Use this text, or create your own: To celebrate their blog’s first months, sex toy boutique @SheBopTheShop is giving away a LELO Gigi luxury vibrator!
  • “Like” us on Facebook.
  • Subscribe to this blog’s RSS feed or sign up for blog email updates.
  • Blog about this giveaway, or post about it on Facebook or Tumblr.

Restrictions: winner must be over 18 and live in the U.S.

This giveaway ends on Saturday, March 12th at midnight Pacific time.
The winner will be chosen by random draw.

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How to use a cock ring

Cock rings, also called penis rings (or as we affectionately call them, “C rings”), are glorious little devices meant to encircle and bind the penis and testicles. They gently restrict blood flow out of the penis, which can make the penis temporarily firmer and more sensitive. This may prolong an erection, and some wearers find that it intensifies their orgasms. But mainly, cock rings provide sensations of tightness and pressure that many folks enjoy. Plus, they just look sexy.

Although it may not immediately be apparent, cock rings are extremely versatile sex toys: they can be used solo or during partner sex — and we mean all flavors of partner sex! Vibrating cock rings are especially great for partner play, as they can stimulate the clitoris or testicles (and sometimes both at once!). A vibrating cock ring can even be strapped around the base of a dildo or vibrator, transforming it into a sort of pseudo rabbit.

We get a lot of questions about how to choose and how to wear a cock ring. After reading this guide, we hope you won’t have many more questions about cock rings — except for which one you want to try next!

Choosing a cock ring

There are a few things to consider when ogling cock rings. You’ll want to take into account your skill level, your budget, and what you’ll be using the cock ring for (is it to simply enhance an erection, or to stimulate a partner as well?). If you have your eye on a vibrating cock ring, the strength of its vibration might be important, too. There are three main styles of cock ring: stretchy basic cock rings, vibrating cock rings, and solid cock rings.

Stretchy basic cock rings are the best choice for beginners, since they can be easily adjusted and removed during use. These come in various colors and sizes, so you can experiment and find the perfect fit. Other stretchy cock ring options include the Tantus Super Soft C-RingP.3 Stretch, and Lovering Rain, three pure silicone rings.

Vibrating cock rings are becoming very popular, and for good reason — these rings each have a vibrating attachment that can be used to stimulate the clitoris or testicles/perineum. A few, like the Duet, aim to stimulate both at once. Our very favorite vibrating cock rings are the luxurious Tor and Mio, which are rechargeable and come in elegant gift boxes.

Solid cock rings are non-adjustable, made of unyielding materials, and come in specific sizes. We currently carry several types of solid cock rings: the Chrome Ring Set, the Nitrile Ring Set, the Stainless Steel Ring, and the wooden Rendezvous Ring. Since these types of cock rings cannot be easily removed during use, they are recommended for advanced users only. To size yourself for one of these cock rings, you’ll need a piece of string or a cloth measuring tape. Get hard, then wrap the measuring tape behind your testicles and tightly around the top of your penis. Keep the tape close to your body. This measurement, in inches, is the circumference of your package.

Most solid cock rings are measured by their interior diameters, so you’ll need to take your circumference and divide it by 3.14 to find the right diameter for you. For example, a circumference of 5.5″ will call for a cock ring with an interior diameter of 1.75″. Don’t go smaller than your measurement — in the world of solid cock rings, the smaller the ring, the more advanced it is. You don’t want to get stuck!

Everyone is different, so come into the shop or contact us if you have any questions about choosing a cock ring.

Using a cock ring on a penis

If this is your first time using a cock ring, give it a solo test run for 5 or 10 minutes to acclimate yourself to the sensation and ensure that the fit is correct. A well-fitting cock ring should increase the size of your erection only slightly, and should cause no pain or discomfort. Follow the steps below for a worry-free cock ring experience.

Prepare. Some cock rings can tug on pubic hair, so you may wish to trim your pubic hair before use.

Lube it up. Spread some lube on your penis and testicles, or on the inside of the ring, to make everything go smoothly. If you’re using a silicone cock ring, be sure to use water-based (not silicone-based) lube.

The time has come. Stretchy cock rings can be put on at any time during an erection, but the process is easiest if you are semi-erect. Using a finger or two from each hand, stretch the ring underneath and behind your testicles, then over your penis and up against your body. Release the tension slowly and slip your fingers out. Most stretchy cock rings can also be worn solely around the shaft of the penis, although they may not be quite as effective that way.

Solid cock rings should be applied before you are completely erect. Drop your testicles through the ring one at a time, then fold your penis downward and ease it through the ring while pulling the ring back against your body.

Go to town! If you’re flying solo, masturbate and experiment with the rotation of the ring. If you’re wanting to stimulate a partner’s clitoris by wearing a vibrating cock ring during sex, try to keep your body parallel to your partner’s and communicate with them about your angle. Shallow, short thrusts should keep the ring in contact with their clitoris. Another good position is cowgirl, where your partner can grind against the cock ring at their own pace.

Be safe. Don’t wear the ring any longer than you are comfortable with; we recommended no more than 25 minutes. If you ever feel discomfort or a loss of sensation, remove the ring immediately. Wearing a cock ring for too long can damage the capillaries and bruise the penis, and nobody wants that!

When you’re done, remove the ring. Stretchy rings can simply be stretched back over and off the genitals. If you’re wearing a solid ring, reverse the steps you took to put it on: push your penis back through the ring, followed by your testicles.

Clean up. If applicable, remove the batteries from your cock ring. Be sure to clean your cock ring before putting it away; antibacterial soap and water should do the trick. Store your cock ring in a cool, dark place, and keep the batteries nearby for next time.


Bondage without Rope with Carrie Gray of Aslan Leather

Sunday, March 20th – 7:30 p – $20

Mention bondage and many people immediately associate it with “being tied up” but what if you are not into rope? Restraints are great for experimenting with bondage and they are quick and easy to apply and provide instant power exchange. Join us for a fun and interactive class on restraints and discover the myriad of ways you can use your set of wrist cuffs, or a number of other fun bondage toys to give you and your bottom a hot scene. We will look at types of restraints, how to apply them, bondage positions for sex, types of bondage, communication skills, scene ideas, safety precautions and so much more. Bring your questions, and be ready to participate — there will be plenty of opportunities.

Carrie Gray is a Toronto based BDSM educator, photographer, manufacturer and designer of strap on harnesses, bondage equipment and owner of ASLAN Leather Inc. Carrie has presented at The Floating World 2010, Dark Odyssey Summer Camp and will be presenting at Dark Odyssey WinterFire 2011 and has been teaching his classes through Good For Her in Toronto for over 10 years. Carrie identifies as a Gender Queer, Transgendered Butch and is a passionate advocate of BDSM as a self- empowering form of sexual, psychological and physical play. A lifestyle Daddy and Master, Carrie enjoys the discoveries that come from pushing the psychological and physical boundaries of top and bottom space through role play, the intimate power of spanking, flogging and the beautiful submission and control of bondage. Carrie’s scene experience and sadistic pleasures cover a variety of activities including knives, canes, needle play, single tails and age play. He believes that playing is an ongoing growth process and is always ready to learn new skills to share with others. With over 10 years experience as a BDSM educator Carrie shares his expertise and lessons in an engaging, open and entertaining format that encourages participants to learn through communication, play and participation.

Please call She Bop to reserve your spot – 503.473.8018

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Boudoir Burlesque with Madison Moone

Wednesday, February 23rd – 7:15 p – $15

Portland’s very own “queen of the tease” is back to bring you a brand new burlesque movement class designed to take the novice peeler to the next level; Boudoir Burlesque aims to go deeper into this sensual art form while getting you in touch with your feminine wiles!

This tantalizing class begins with a brief overview of some burlesque basics such as bumps, grinds, and struts before moving into a flirty, choreographed routine. Miss Moone combines traditional burlesque moves and classic striptease with modern dance techniques. Madison will also share her trade secrets on peeling garments elegantly with in the construct of a tease. Bob Fosse meets Dita Von Teese in a sultry class that is sure to give your libido a work out!

While nudity is not required, sexy costuming is! Short skirts? Yes! Lace panties? Yes! Garters? Stockings? Gloves? Yes! Yes! Yes! Please bring a sexy outfit of your choice from home including heels, panties and a bra. The sky is the limit so let your female spirit run wild! Do keep in mind that we are learning “the art of the tease”, layers are best as we will be going down to bras and panties in the routine. Not sure what to wear? Bring some wardrobe from home and Miss Moone will act as your burlesque stylist.

If you have previously taken “The Construction of the Tease” or “Burlesque 101,” this class is the next step. However, beginners and adventurous spirits are highly encouraged to attend! All levels of fitness welcome, no dance experience or nudity required. Please avoid alcohol consumption before attending and arrive by 7:15pm – class will begin promptly at 7:30pm and no late entrance allowed after 7:45pm. Also no photographs are permitted.

Please call She Bop to reserve your spot – (503) 473-8018

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She Bop’s Picks: Valentine’s Day

Ah, Valentine’s Day. How can you argue with a day meant to celebrate love and pleasure in all their various forms? We sure can’t! In fact, we think Valentine’s Day is the perfect time to scout out something new for your bedroom adventures. Here are our recommendations for sexy items to make this Valentine’s Day memorable (and pleasurable!), whether you’re in a partnered relationship or flying solo.


Sure, this adorable vibrating apparatus can be used for regular massages (the bulbs do feel quite nice…), but its sexy use is far more interesting. With its suction cup base, it can be attached to a smooth surface, keeping it immobile while you hump away. The suction cup is also detachable. Cleo has eight different vibration modes and is made of silky 100% silicone. It is fully waterproof, ’cause you know you want to take this one in the bath or shower!


Cock rings are great for enhancing erections and boosting sensitivity in the penis, but this one is truly made to please everyone involved. Made of stretchy elastomer, the Duet features two vibrating attachments to stimulate the clitoris on one partner and perineum on the other. It can also be used solo for some buzzing masturbation fun, or strapped onto a dildo or vibrator to create a dual-action toy!

Comstock Films

You’ll likely never find any porn film as romantic and deeply personal as those made by Tony Comstock. These films feature interviews with the couples, supplying a backstory about their relationship that makes the subsesquent sex even hotter. From the charm of Damon and Hunter, to the sweet sensuality of Bill and Desiree, to the fiery passion of Xana and Dax, there is a Comstock Film for everyone.

Pure Wand

The Pure Wand has been known to change lives, with its heavy G- and P-spotting capabilities. This beautiful, shiny dildo is made of solid stainless steel, and its 1.5 pounds definitely contributes to how masterful it is at massaging G-spots and prostates. It’s also very easy to wield, either alone or with a partner, due to its ergonomic shape. The Pure Wand comes in a satin-lined gift box, where you can store it during the rare hours of the day when you are not using it!

Earthly Body Edible Massage Candles

Of course! Candles are essential for setting the mood. But these aren’t just any candles — these heart-shaped, 100% vegan massage candles are edible! Light the candle, let the warm wax pool, then slowly drizzle it over skin. The wax will turn into a silky massage oil which can be licked up or worked into the skin. Choose from five sexy flavors: strawberry, watermelon, cherry, grape, and dreamsicle. Add an elegant Contour M massage stone to the mix for an even more luxurious massage experience.


How can you resist this adorable little thing? The Fun Factory Spring is covered in a cushy reddish pink silicone and adorned with raised flowers that can be subtly felt during use. This rechargeable, waterproof vibe is the perfect size for clitoral stimulation or light penetration. It has a wide range of vibration strengths, and three pulsation settings, to suit every taste. Great for an on-the-go quickie, or a slow and sensual romp.

My Erotic Adventure

This sexy and playful erotica book, written by local author Makael Newby, is modeled after Choose Your Own Adventure novels. What kind of sex do you want to have? With whom? How about a threesome? Do you want it filmed? The choice is yours. Get lost in the story by yourself, or read aloud to a partner and navigate the story together. With 48 different endings, My Erotic Adventure is a book you can return to again and again.


It may look funky, but it has a purpose: the Fun Factory Share is a strapless strap-on! A person inserts the bulb vaginally, then uses the shaft to penetrate a partner. Crafted of super smooth and luscious silicone, the Share is comfortable and pleasurable, with curves that conform to the body. For a smaller shaft, try the Share XS. If you’re daring or love texture, check out the Share XL.

Sliquid Swirl

Many flavored lubricants taste strange or gummy, but not Sliquid Swirl. This fantastic flavored lube tastes amazing, and it’s glycerin and paraben free, so it’s entirely body-safe. Sliquid Swirl is water-based and comes in several flavors, but cherry vanilla seems the most apt for Valentine’s Day (perhaps a cheesy line about a “cherry on top” is in the works?).


Loved by beginners and experienced players alike, the Fun Factory Bootie is a fabulous unisex butt plug that simply begs to be worn discreetly. The long, thin base nestles perfectly between the cheeks, never becoming uncomfortable, even after extended wear. So Bootie can be worn any time: during sex, during a romantic dinner date, out to the movies, the list is endless. Whatever your Valentine’s Day plans, Bootie can make them even more — ahem — stimulating.

Appetite toy storage bags

Give your favorite sex toy a comfy place to live with an Appetite storage bag. These beautiful locally made, hand-printed fabric bags are available only at She Bop, and come in two varieties: travel bag and padded bag. The travel bags have square bottoms and built-in elastic straps, while the zipper bags are flat and padded. (Bonus: if the Hitachi Magic Wand is the favorite toy that came to your mind, the large bags can accommodate even that beast!)

Form 3

The Jimmyjane Form 3 is a revolutionary new sex toy that turns your finger into a vibrator. The “touchpad” is soft and pliable, so a fingertip can easily manipulate it. Bend it, flex it, flick it back and forth — make it do your finger’s bidding, with added vibration! Form 3 really has it all: it’s powerful, waterproof, rechargeable, and completely body-safe. This is a wonderful toy to explore on your own or with a partner.

Feather Tickler or Duster

Inexpensive and fun, the feather duster can be as silly or as erotic as you want it to be. Use it as a secret weapon during a tickle fight — or drag it slowly across the skin in an intimate moment. Either way, whether you’re eliciting giggles or moans, you’ll be having a good time.

Welcome to She Bop’s blog!

She Bop is a women-owned sex toy boutique specializing in body safe products and education. Our mission is to promote healthy and safe sexuality by offering quality products and educational workshops in a fun and comfortable environment. She Bop welcomes people of all genders and sexual orientations.
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