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Vibrator Quality and Price

Choosing a Vibrator Based on Cost and Quality

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Updated January 21, 2010

Two important considerations in choosing a vibrator is the quality of the vibrator and the price of the toy. At reputable sex shops there will be a correlation between quality and price. But don't assume that the more expensive vibrators are always the best quality. Many sex shops engage in premium pricing, jacking up the retail price to suggest that something is better quality.

The three key elements that influence vibrator quality and price should be:

  1. what the vibrator is made of
  2. the quality of the motor
  3. the pricing practices of the manufacturer and the retailer

Vibrators that are made of silicone rubber, elastomers , and metal are easier to keep clean better quality, and they will be more expensive. Vibrators made of jelly rubber or silicone/jelly rubber mixes are much less expensive, but condoms should be used every time you use a jelly rubber vibrator. There are some manufacturers who call their toys silicone, but they only contain small amounts of silicone. These toys are not better quality, even though they may be more expensive.

As a general rule, vibrators that use Chinese motors are of poorer quality, will burn out faster, and are less expensive. Vibrators that use Japanese motors tend to be stronger, last longer, and they are more expensive. This does not mean that all Chinese motors are bad, but rather the vibrators that are produced in China and sold in most sex toy stores use poor quality Chinese motors. Many of the Japanese manufacturers take an artisan approach to what they do, and put tremendous pride in producing toys that will last a long time.

In many cases electric vibrators are better quality and last longer than battery vibrators, but this is not always the case. The electric vibrators that are better quality are the ones marketed as massagers that come from brand name companies like Hitachi and Panasonic, and have warranties.

While in better adult sex toy stores it is true that the more expensive vibrators are better quality, this isn’t true in all stores. Be aware that many sex stores engage in “premium pricing” where they will intentionally mark up the price of a product to make customers think it is better quality. When in doubt, if you notice a big price difference with a vibrator, ask why it is more expensive.

As a final note, I recommend ignoring stores that tell you the only good sex toy is the one that costs over $80. There are always ways of playing with sex toys safely and enjoyably, without breaking the bank. There isn’t an orgasm quality comparative to the cost of your vibrator, and a $20 vibrator won’t give you a three times less satisfying orgasm than a $60 vibrator, it will probably just break sooner.

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