Soft Core: Why Do Sex Toy Makers Have Such Horrible Videos?

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Vibease, a Bluetooth controlled vibrator + app that can be controlled by yourself or your partner, just went on pre-order. To mark this momentous occasion, the company released a commercial. An awful, horrible commercial. But the general mobile… sexual… hardware segment(?) has been heating up, with competition sprouting up from the high to the low end.

And you know what I learned today? Almost all startup sex toys have crazy, hilariously awful commercials.

Let’s take a look, yes?

Vibease

  • Description: A Bluetooth-enabled clitoral vibrator that pairs with an Android app for duo or “solo” mode.
  • Price: $69 pre-order, $149 for a pair
  • Video: For one, this commercial kind of displaces the watcher from reality the second that girl runs a towel over completely dry hair. It then gets just a bit more awkward as you watch her fondle the vibrator (rather than use it), as the camera cuts to split screen over some corny acoustic guitar.
  • Rating: What’s the opposite of turned on?

OhMiBod

  • Description: A variation of vibrators and dildos that mostly come with a 3.5mm headphone jack. When plugged into an iPod, the vibrator pulses to the beat. There is also an iPhone app.
  • Price: $79-$120
  • Video: This is possibly even less realistic than Vibease simply because (while I don’t speak for everyone) I hope with all my hope that there is no woman who is pleasuring herself by dancing on her bed half-dressed and mocking oral sex with a vibrating dildo. It also doesn’t help that the relatively upbeat, bouncy piano music at the beginning, which was kind of cute, was replaced with chaotic Rock.
  • Rating: Yeah right.

JimmyJane Form 6

  • Description: To be fair, this isn’t a tech startup per se. But this is a wireless top of the line vibrator with no battery door and wireless charging. It also obviously takes design cues from modern gadgetry.
  • Price: $185
  • Video: Wow. Well, that’s only slightly better than going to the gynecologist. I’m also not sure about those white gloves. My mind goes from Doctor, to magician, and then to Mickey Mouse. Personally, that is a progression from not sexy to downright awkward. Subtract ten points for using the word “labia.”
  • Rating: One step up from an STD clinic.

LovePalz: Hera and Zeus

  • Description: LovePalz is a three piece system, including a WiFi-enabled and sensor-equipped “Hera” dildo and “Zeus” man jar, along with an iPhone app (that’s tied up in the App Store). The secret sauce here is that, when paired over WiFi, the partners will feel each others motions in real time.
  • Price: $94.95 for the pair
  • Video: I’ll give credit where credit is due — this is actually a pretty high-quality video. The music actually captures that lonely but horny mood, while managing to be romantic, melancholy, and semi-sexy at the same time. Bonus points for showing two humans interacting physically without it looking awkward or forced.My main problem is that the actual product is only shown once, as a graphic laid over the video, and not anywhere close to in-use (other than the app). To be fair, this is probably how the commercial manages to be remotely hot.
  • Rating: Smart is sexy.

To be fair to our startups, even the biggest sex toy manufacturers in the world have commercials that range from mildly hot to mildly disgusting (yet funny).

My point, I think, is that it’s nearly impossible to market a sex toy through video because a sex toy commercial is called porn. And chances are we’ve all seen it, probably on Sex.com or Pinterest, if not sought it out directly at one time or another.

There’s clearly a trend here, as far as Bluetooth and sex toys and mobile apps are concerned. But manufacturing can make this a really difficult space. So here’s to the startups that are trying, bellyflop or not, to get you, well, turned-on by their products.

Take a look around. Explore your spicy side. Drop that credit card like it’s hot.