Sex toys are objects used for the purpose of stimulating parts of the body, frequently (though not exclusively) with the intent of producing or enhancing an orgasm.  Most sex toys are used on the genitals, but some are used elsewhere.  Sex toys can be items that are specifically designed for the purpose, like vibrators, dildos, and sleeves, or they can be regular household objects that have been repurposed, like handheld shower attachments or pillows.

Most people think of sex toys as some sort of plastic mutated exaggerated form of disembodied vibrating genitalia, and it’s true that there are many toys that fit that description.  But there are also many plain or abstract designs that look more like sculptures than anatomy, and focus more on function than looks.  If you’re not a fan of simulated body parts, it’s possible to find almost any type of sex toy in a non-anatomical form.

Many aces report that sex toys are a way to engage in masturbation without having to directly touch their genitals or any fluids involved.  Many vibrators or dildos have a long handle, so they can be held at a distance, while many sleeves will fully enclose the penis and contain any fluids that may be involved.  Some toys can even be set up to be used completely hands free.

A lot of aces (and even many non-aces) find that sex toys are the easiest way, and perhaps the only way, to achieve an orgasm.  If you’ve tried masturbating by hand and have never had an orgasm, perhaps using a sex toy might help.  It’s definitely not a guarantee, though.  And although sex toys are generally intended to be used to help achieve an orgasm, that does not have to be the result.  You can use one to go as far as you like, but still stop short of an orgasm, if you prefer.

Sex toys can be made out of a number of materials.  Most are plastic, rubber, or silicone, but there are toys made from glass, metal, wood, even cloth.  You should pay attention to toy safety guidelines for toys made from various materials.  Some toys are considered “body safe”, which means they are non-porous (so bacteria and other icky things can’t find little nooks and crannies to grow in) and made from safe, non-toxic materials.  Glass, metal, silicone, and hard plastic tend to be the least porous, while “jelly rubber” tends to be the most porous.  (Jelly rubber is also potentially carcinogenic, so two strikes there.)  For some porous toys, condom use is recommended (whether that’s a condom on you or on the toy depends on the type of toy).  Additionally, some materials have a strong chemical smell or have a slimy, oily feel to them.  A few good rules of thumb are that if it smells bad it probably is bad, and if the material has a “brand name” sounding name, it’s probably junk.  There are many resources out there around sex toy safety, and I encourage you to read up on them.

And regardless of the material, be sure to clean your toys regularly, especially if it goes inside you or you go inside it.

Artificial lube can be helpful when using some toys, particularly sleeves or anal toys.  However, certain toys and certain lubes don’t mix.  For simplicity, stick to a water based lube.  They’re usually the cheapest and easiest to find, easiest to clean up, and are pretty much compatible with anything.  Silicone lubes or oil-based lubes might destroy your toys.

It’s okay to be asexual and be curious about sex toys.  It’s okay to be asexual and use sex toys.  It’s okay to be asexual and enjoy sex toys.  It’s even okay to be asexual and enjoy using vibrating curiously exaggerated disembodied genitalia sex toys.