Can you believe we’re almost at the end of 2016? It really has been an interesting year… in more ways than one. But we’ve definitely had a fun year on the blog, so today I want to go back and pick out my highlights from the last 12 months.
It’s been a slightly quieter year this year – we’ve only completed 66 reviews (compared to 90 last year) but we’ve tried a few new things this year as well. We’ve experimented with Erotica, some more personal ‘sexy thoughts‘ and added some more guides. I’m already lining up my reviews for 2017, plus we have Eroticon to look forward to in March as well. So there’s still plenty to come.
When I began to think about my top picks for the year, I had planned to split it all up into categories. I then decided I would just keep things simple. My choices were simple. I look at the overall score I finally gave a product, and then also factored in things like how often i’ve used a product since review. I should also note that this list is based off of products I have reviewed this year – it does not reflect when the product was released. So let’s not keep you waiting, let’s get straight into the list.
Liberator Fleshlight ‘On-a-Mission’ Mount
I was extremely excited when Liberator got in touch, and asked me to review some of their products. As an owner of a LOT of Fleshlight/Fleshjacks – one of the Mounts was pretty much a no-brainer. Not only did it provide some more options for using masturbators on their own, it also fits into regular couples play as well. Fancy a simulated threesome? I can slip inside the Fleshlight, and then have the Mr slip inside me. It also makes a great spanking mount as well.
There are so many things that you can do – the only real limit here is your imagination. It’s also just been a general god-send – allowing us to explore positions we never normally would have. I’m not exactly the lightest of fellows, and sometimes, being in certain positions can be restrictive and uncomfortable – but this mount gives extra support and lets us enjoy a new positions in a safe manner.
It’s an expensive piece of kit, but it is pure quality. It’s water-proof and the covers can be removed for easy clean-up. It really is a versatile piece of kit. It’s only downside, is that it’s a bugger to store if you don’t have a lot of room. But when I think of all the things we can do with it, I can generally let that slide. Read our full review of the ‘On-A-Mission’ Mount. We also reviewed the ‘Top-Dog‘ this year too.
Fun Factory MOODY Vibrator
I love it when a simple vibrator comes along and completely knocks your socks off. Fun Factory is a brand that I generally always enjoy – i’ve yet to experience a product that I would say was terrible. When I saw the MOODY for the first time, I thought it was just the cutest darn thing I had ever seen. I was excited when it arrived, but that soon turned into lustful hysteria when I discovered this little tiny toy was powered by the same motor in the G5 line of toys. Holy poop.
The BIG BOSS G5 was a surprise, because it was a big chunky vibrator, yet it still managed to pack a nice rumbly wallop. So putting that motor in the smaller G5 meant the MOODY was an unassuming power-house. It’s ribbed shaft and curved tip made for some truly stimulating anal play.
Honestly, it really did just feel so good. I really struggled to find anything to dislike about the Moody. In fact, it shouldn’t be called Moody. It should be called HAPPY, because that’s how it made me feel.
Despite the fact the silicone is a little draggier, and it’s still not as beefed up as things like the ROSA, it’s smaller size means I can whip it out for a quick session, and I still feel completely satisfied after use. Perfect for beginners and power-lovers alike. In fact, just thinking about it now makes me want to excuse myself… be right back. In the meantime, check out our review of the MOODY.
Crowned Jewels EROS Grande Aluminium Dildo
If there was an award I could give for the most interesting packaging for a sex toy, Crowned Jewels would definitely be up there. This UK based company craft all manner of beautiful dildos, butt plugs and cock rings out of steel, aluminium and titanium. When I was offered the chance to review a toy for them, I couldn’t say no. The EROS Grande is simple, but effective. It doesn’t try to be anything other than a simple (but elegant) tool of pleasure.
It arrives in a black faux-leather tube that is sealed with wax. That in itself makes the whole experience an ‘event’. As you break the seal to get to the toy inside, you can’t help but feel a sense of excitement build deep inside you.
Thanks to it’s slightly longer length and larger surface area, this found my p-spot and then some. Once again, that curve in the shaft provides a nice anchor point to really manoeuvre the Eros into the most ideal position for stimulation.
It’s another fairly pricey addition to the list, but you are paying for a hand-made luxury item. It’s great for anal and vaginal usage, can be heated and cooled for temperature play and is perfect for beginners thanks to it’s size. I really hope to work with Crowned Jewels again soon. Check out our review of the EROS and see why it was so ‘Grande’.
Electrastim JACK SOCKET Electro Sex Stroker
It’s not every day you get the chance to review something that is so completely new and unique. The JACK SOCKET was definitely a complete surprise, but one that was enjoyable, if intimidating. We were still fairly new to Electro play, and whilst I thoroughly enjoyed having my prostate worked over by electricity, I was a little dubious about subjecting my cock to it. But I will try almost anything once. Thankfully, this was one occasion where I was definitely happy to use again and again and again…
This toy made me create noises that I never thought were humanly possible. It was relentless in it’s pursuit of making me orgasm, and it left me in a state of shock. Quite literally.
It’s a truly unique sensation, one that really cannot be described in words effectively. It’s on the list because it’s innovative and completely bat-shit insane. For those looking for something completely different – consider adding some electro play to your repertoire. You can read our full thoughts on this shocking device here.
Rocks-Off RISE Rechargeable Masturbator
It’s always a good feeling when you are completely surprised by a toy. I have to be blatantly honest, i’d written off Rocks-Off for a long time, because I found their bullet vibrators just too under-powered for my liking. And I really, really didn’t like the Hand Solo. However, after winning the RISE in a twitter competition, I was prepared to put my differences aside and approach it with an open mind. And i’m glad I did, because it worked, and it worked very well.
It looks like a sexier version of the Hand Solo, but it boasts a stronger rechargeable motor, and a dedicated frenulum bump to offer direct stimulation of those sensitive spots. Whilst it’s not the strongest or rumbliest motor, the RISE still managed to bring me to orgasm EVERY time, and it was always completely satisfying:
I could pretty much feel vibration all through my penis – which in turn, amplified the overall sensation. On the lowest speed, it took me about 6 minutes to achieve orgasm from start to finish, and on the highest speed – 4 minutes.
Rocks-Off are definitely a company i’m watching more closely. It would be great to see that sort of motor included in their prostate toys – they definitely need a boost. Check out the full review here.
VIVE AKI Vibrating Butt Plug
Another surprise came this year after visiting my first bricks-and-mortar toy store. That’s right, i’d never stepped inside a sex toy shop before – and as a sex blogger, that felt shameful. But after visiting London’s busy Oxford Street, I popped into Harmony Store for a browse and did not leave empty handed. I was taken by the new range of vibrators they had on display. The VIVE AKI was a cute vibrating plug that impressed me with it’s vibrations in store. I needed to take it home with me. And so I did.
The vibrations were surprisingly strong and rumbly. It truly feels like a luxury product but it was (comparatively) cheap.
I was soon incredibly aroused, so I began to stroke myself, and I had been barely at it for more than 30 seconds, when I could feel a huge orgasm brewing. When I eventually let go, I came pretty hard and I was left shaking. This is now my new favourite butt plug.
As vibrating butt plugs go, it’s definitely one of the best I have tried, and is worthy of it’s inclusion on this round up of 2016. Get the full lowdown on the AKI over here.
Tom of Finland Head to Head Vibrating Stroker
As toys go, this was the MOST fun we had reviewing a product this year. And that’s because it’s one of those toys we can actually use together. Mutual Masturbation plays a big role in the bedroom, and we’re always looking for different ways to do things, just to keep us on our toes. We tried a dual masturbator a while ago, and it was sadly disappointing. Still, i’m not one to be deterred. I saw this toy and was immediately captivated. It didn’t look any different to the one we had tried before bar one exception. This one vibrated! Finally, a use for all of the Tango’s I have lying around!
You could see where we meet in the middle, and the tips of our penises brushed, and rubbed together. At this point, I was already reaching the point of no return, and I hadn’t even turned the vibrations on yet. So we dialed it down a bit.
Turns out the vibrations are really just a bonus, and weren’t needed. It was definitely a far more interesting and sensual experience, one that will ensure that this stays at the top of the toy box so we can whip this out whenever. Read the full review.
BLUSH Novelties Nude Impressions 02
This product ticks all of the right boxes. Body safe? Check! Anal safe? Check! Rechargeable? Check! Waterproof? Check! Powerful? Check! Affordable? CHECK! The Nude Impressions range definitely shows that you can have a safe and powerful toy without having to spend lots of money. I was thoroughly impressed with the vibrations here – which whilst not the rumbliest, still packed a significant punch.
And it really is a wild ride. The rounded tip and ridges massage my internal spots with almost criminal ease, and the addition of the rather powerful vibrations just has me weak at the knees. I was rock hard within minutes, and a quick tug took me over the edge into orgasmic bliss
I am definitely tempted to consider adding the other 3 models of the Nude Impressions line into my collection. But for now, the 02 has definitely left a last impression, and if you are looking for a cheap, body safe and powerful vibrator – it’s worth considering. Check out our full thoughts over here.
Sheets of San Francisco Fluidproof Fun Sheet
The first of 2 sexy bits of bedding to make the list this year, and easily one of the more flexible items as well. It was an absolute pleasure to hang out with the folks behind SOSF at ETO this year, and we managed to sweet talk them into providing us with a sheet for review, as we combined it with our review for the KinkCraft bondage candles. Their product is a fitted sheet for the bed that is completely fluid proof – allowing you to get as messy as you would like, without fear of ruining your sheets. Wax play? Check! Squirting? Check! Sploshing? Check! The only limit here is your imagination.
We could finally be as messy as the hell we wanted, and no one then had to worry about going to bed in a puddle. It also means any little ‘accidents’ that can sometimes happen are also no big deal. It’s a real confidence booster.
The sheets are durable, washable and versatile. It’s an expensive investment, but that’s what it is – an investment in some messy sexy time. No longer do I have to worry about making a mess – we can get lost in the moment, carefree – knowing that all we have to do is put it in the washing machine and we’re all good. Get the full lowdown here.
Liberator Fascinator Throe
Is it throw or throe? I’m still none-the-wiser. Still, Liberators offering to sexy bedding is another worthy addition to the list and bedroom. The Throe is also waterproof, but benefits from being ‘reversable’. It has a soft, silky side and a softer, fluffier side. It can be thrown down anywhere to create a comfortable (and waterproof) base for play time. Not ideal for things like wax play, but lube and what-not are perfectly safe to use, and once again – it can be tossed in the machine for a good old wash.
It just feels SO GOOD on the skin. As we rolled around in each other’s arms, it just felt so warm and cozy. Secondly, when we were using the Liberator shapes (such as the BonBon and Wedge – review coming soon) – because the covers are made of a similar feel material, it kind of helped ‘keep them in place’ so they didn’t slide around the bed as much
Available in different colours, i’m sure you’ll be able to find one to match your interior decor. But it’s innocent enough that it could be left lying around and most people would just assume it’s a regular throw or blanket. And that’s awesome. Check out the full review now.
Cortez the Anthro Avian Dildo
I’ve only reviewed 2 fantasy dildos this year (something I will do my best to amend in 2017) and whilst I loved the Roland from Bad-Dragon – I have to give it to Twin Tail Creations and their Anthro Avian dildo. Firstly, I kind of like to support the ‘little guy’ and TTC are a new company in a growing market, and have already begun to prove themselves as a company to look out for.
The Cortez is relatively tame compared to some fantasy dildos, but there is still plenty of elements that step it up from a regular phallic shaped dildo. It’s beautifully ribbed, and despite the softness of the silicone, it offers some truly unique sensations. I adore the custom colour work as well, and they seem like genuinely friendly people as well.
The initial entry is smooth as the tip is tapered, but it quickly gives way to the wide, textured shaft almost instantly. Even with the medium shaft, the texture is still very obvious – but in an extremely nice way. As I inched (well, millimeter’d) the Cortez in, the bumps and ridges in the shaft were teasing my sphincter something crazy. I could feel each and every one of them.
You can customise the toy in several ways, and whilst i’m training my butt to take larger toys, the Cortez is definitely proving itself to be a fun work out. Read the full in-depth review of the Cortez here.
Godemiche AMBIT Silicone Dildo
Godemiche are another small company who are doing some amazing things with silicone. It was a tough choice between the ADAM and the Ambit for placement, but the Ambit won it (marginally) for a couple of reasons. Firstly, it’s smaller shape and curve makes it more approachable – the ADAM is a chunky monster and quite firm, so it can be intimidating. The AMBIT strips things backs a little bit and offers a modestly satisfying size that’s suitable for almost any body.
Secondly the colour design I chose (the Galaxy) is blood BEAUTIFUL. It truly is a work of art. And it was surprisingly affordable as well. I got to see them make it on SnapChat as well – which is a fantastic idea. Godemiche like to share, and get you involved with what they are doing. I’ve had the pleasure of meeting both Adam and Monika in the flesh, and their dedication and passion to crafting these toys is a true breath of fresh air.
Whilst lying on my back, I was able to thrust my way to orgasm with little effort on my part. Whilst it doesn’t leave me feeling ‘full’ like most other dildos – the overall stimulation of the prostate was enough for me.
I cannot wait to see what 2017 has in store. You can read our out-of-this-world review of our Galaxy Ambit over here.
The Rabbit Company Backdoor Rabbit
One of the newest additions to our toy box, but it’s left a lasting impression on me. I’ve always looked at Rabbit Vibrators and wondered whether the ‘gendered genital’ advertising was mis-placed (the answer is YES, I’m certain) and whether I could find as much pleasure from a rabbit vibrator as those with vaginas. The Backdoor Rabbit was designed specifically for anal use, but looks like a traditional rabbit vibe. It has a long shaft with a set of rabbit ears at the base for external stimulation.
I was so excited about trying this, especially as i’ve been longing to find something I could recommend over the LOKI as LELO is not a company I plan to endorse in any way. And i’m pleased to report the the Backdoor Rabbit succeeds with bells on! It’s powerful and provides some exquisite stimulation.
With a bit of leverage and some clenching of the pelvic floor muscles, the tip of the BDR nuzzled itself against my prostate and began to work it’s magic. As I increased the intensity, I could feel the vibrations all through my lower abdomen. It was having a positive effect on the rest of my body too. My skin was covered in goosebumps, and my cock was twitching away, like it had a mind of it’s own.
Unfortunately, the Beaded Backdoor Rabbit didn’t quite hit the same mark, however that’s OK. The Backdoor Rabbit is a cute, powerful vibrator that should appeal to everyone. Good for prostate play but also for general anal/vaginal play as well. Check out the full review here.
TENGA Flip Zero
The last entry on the list is fittingly the last thing we’ve reviewed. And for good reason, I assure you. I’ve always enjoyed TENGA products. The Flip Hole was the second ‘luxury’ masturbator I ever bought, and it was a revelation. Interesting textures, unique design and easy to look after. The Flip Zero took everything I liked about the original and just.. made it better. The texture is easily the most exciting thing – and the Zero packs in a LOT of texture! The case redesign makes it slicker and more beautiful to look at (and hold).
It manages to suck an orgasm out of me in next to no time, and I took great pleasure in work over the MR with it, as he lay there helplessly and at my whim.
Every inch of the texture inside feels exquisite – I can feel every nuance and bump and it just feels jolly good. I cannot lie – on my first use; it only took me a few minutes to reach orgasm. It was definitely a knee-trembler as well. Subsequent uses always end the same – in a huge sticky mess – but I can take my time to appreciate all the different sensations
It’s so good, that all 4 original TENGA Flip Holes have now been relegated to the sex toy graveyard in my attic space. This is the only Flip that I need. Read our full review here.
Some of the other products we have enjoyed this year include: POP! By Semenette, KinkCraft Wax Play Candles, Embrace G Wand, Doc Johnson TruSkyn ‘Tru Ride’ Dual Density dildo and F-Machine Gigolo Fucking Machine.
It’s always hard putting together lists like this, especially when as I look back, in terms of product – 2016 wasn’t really a bad year after all.
What has been your favourite product this year? What has been your favourite article this year? What would you like to see us review next year? What’s on your ‘must-have’ list. Leave a comment below, drop me an email or hit us up on Twitter. I’d love to hear about your 2016!
For now, I want to say a massive thank you to everyone who has supported The Big Gay Review over the last 12 months. There have been some difficult moments, but we’ve made it through and I’m still so pleased to see that we are gaining readers every day. We’ve now served well over a million visitors since May 2014 – a number I can’t even begin to truly comprehend. I’d love it if we could do that in just one year. How awesome would that be?
So here’s to 2017 – onwards and upwards!