The best thing about sex toys is (of course!) how pleasurable they are. The second best thing is that you can find high-quality, body-safe toys at almost any price point.
With so many options available for all budgets, shopping for sex toys is easier and more cost-effective than ever. Join us as we share helpful tips for buying the perfect pleasure product, whether you're splashing out for a special occasion or watching your wallet. From steals to splurges, we've got the lowdown on the best toys in every price range.
The Importance of Body Safe Materials
Let's start by discussing the most important feature to look for when browsing sex toys, no matter how much money you plan to spend. This feature is an indication of basic quality and can be found in sex toys of all prices.
What is this feature? Body safety.
A body-safe sex toy is one made from body-safe material, which means it's non-porous, won't absorb bacteria or cause infections, and doesn't contain toxic chemicals that could potentially leach into the body.
Examples of body-safe materials include:
- Stainless steel
- ABS plastic
Penis toys made from TPE (thermoplastic elastomer) are also generally considered safe. Both wood are stone toys are treated with non-toxic sealants to make them non-porous. Silicone, glass, and stainless steel are naturally non-porous.
Read more: What Is Body-Safe Silicone?
Examples of sex toy materials to avoid include:
- PVC, AKA jelly rubber. Avoid toys made from PVC, which typically has a shiny, sticky, or transparent appearance and may contain toxic chemicals such as phthalates
- TPE/TPR (TPE/TPR penis toys are okay -- insertable toys are not)
- Plastic that isn't ABS plastic
Why are TPE/TPR penis toys safe? Because they're used on the outside the body, on skin that is less likely to become infected by bacteria. To avoid infection and irritation, women and vulva owners should never use toys made from any of the above materials.
For more: Are TPE Sex Toys Safe?
Now that we know which toys are safe, let's discuss other key features to look for when browsing products in different price categories.
Sex Toy Size And Shape
A budget price doesn't mean you have to forego quality. Shop wisely and you can find wallet-friendly pleasure products with surprisingly luxe features.
The size and shape of a sex toy impacts the way it feels inside your body. When shopping for toys under $50, look for designs that will fit comfortably in your hand, making the experience of using them easier and more intuitive.
If you're on the hunt for an ergonomic clitoral vibrator that won't break the bank, check out bullet vibrators, which are compact and light in weight. When browsing larger vibrators like rabbit-style toys and wands, look carefully at weight and dimensions to make sure your toy of choice will be comfortable to hold and use.
Browse all bullet vibrators
Toys in the mid-range tend to have a greater focus on design than lower priced toys, with shapes and angles that make them easier to use.
At this price point, the shape of sex toys is typically optimized for the kind of stimulation they provide. For example, clitoral vibrators might have a curved tip for better access to the clitoris, while prostate massagers may feature a curve that conforms to the body's natural contours.
Materials used for these toys are often higher quality, providing a more realistic feel and more durability. Whether you're looking for a toy for solo play or for use with a partner, mid-range sex toys offer a great balance of affordability and quality.
Higher-end sex toys typically feature ergonomic designs that make for better handling and control. Regardless of the type of toy you choose, most will come with a comfortable grip to both reduce hand and wrist strain and offer a more comfortable experience.
Some products in this price range can be controlled by app or remote for hands-free play, making them even easier to enjoy without distraction. Overall, the size and shape of these sex toys make them versatile and suitable for different preferences, while their ergonomic design ensures maximum enjoyment and a satisfying experience.
Sex Toy Settings
While some budget-friendly sex toys may offer fewer settings, a bit of browsing can uncover models with a surprising amount of variety. Even some of the most reasonably priced vibrators and air pressure toys will offer several speeds and distinct vibration patterns, each with a unique rhythm and intensity.
Some budget toys may also have memory functions that let you save your ideal settings so you can quickly return to them without having to cycle through settings.
Though you'll find plenty of vibrators and cock rings under $50, it can be more difficult to find vibrating strokers in this price range. These tend to cost a bit more because of their size and complexity. If you're looking for a stroker under $50, many non-vibrating models deliver intense suction and stroking stimulation without a motor.
When shopping for toys between $50 and $100, you can expect to find a wider range of speeds and patterns compared to those in a lower price range. Many models will have multiple vibration intensities and patterns, and some will offer multiple motors that can be operated independently for different types of stimulation.
If you're looking for a toy with an escalating vibration setting, you'll start to find it in the $50-$100 range. Mini or plug-in models of higher-end vibrators such as the Magic Wand are also popular at this price point.
$100 and up
Toys in this price range often offer multiple speeds and intensity levels, allowing for a more personalized experience. Many high-end toys feature innovative patterns and pulsations, such as waves or escalations, that simulate a variety of sensations and add an element of excitement to playtime.
More advanced toys in this price range may also offer app connectivity or remote control. This feature not only allows for greater speed and pattern customization, but also opens the door for long-distance play and partner control.
Sex Toy Sensation Quality
While the sensation a toy delivers will depends on its unique design, in general, some toys feel more buzzy and others feel more rumbly.
Toys that deliver low frequency vibration feel rumbly, which can be described as a deep, rolling type of sensation. A rumbly vibrator penetrates deeper nerve endings and tissues, and may be better at pleasuring the clitoral network and prostate. Rumbly vibrators also have a lower-pitched sound, which some people find less distracting.
By contrast, buzzy vibrators deliver more surface power, which can be enjoyable if you prefer strong and direct stimulation. Because buzzy vibrations are more superficial and deliver focused stimulation to fewer nerve endings, they can cause a feeling of numbness.
Using these toys for less time can help you avoid numbness and enjoy the intensity a buzzy vibe has to offer.
Rumbly vibrators tend to be more popular, and more expensive. But if you know what to look for, you can find a toy with excellent sensation quality for a reasonable price.
Sex toys under $50 may lack some of the advanced features you'll find in higher-priced toys, but the sensation doesn't have to feel low-budget.
If you're in search of an affordable buzzy vibrator, you'll find plenty of options. Many (if not most) toys under below $50 are on the buzzier side because less expensive motors tend to produce buzzier vibration.
On the hunt for a rumbly vibe that won't break the bank? Look for the words "rumbly" or "low-frequency" when browsing product descriptions. Peruse "best of" lists of budget toys, and seek out lower-priced models made by brands known for deep, rumbly vibes.
This price range is where rumbly and other higher quality vibes start hitting their stride. You'll find plenty of quality sensation options over $50, including vibrating strokers and powerful wands designed for clitoral stimulation.
Fans of buzz will still find lots of their favorite sensation in mid-range toys, as well as extras like more settings, waterproof construction, and longer warranties.
Air pulse toys make a welcome appearance at this price point, as well. Some give higher-end air pulse options a run for the money, while others deliver less refined stimulation and fewer settings.
Sex toys that are priced above $100 offer a high level of quality and superior sensation. These sex toys are often equipped with advanced motor technology, which delivers deeper vibration, air pulses, or throbbing. They also typically boast multiple or escalating settings, making it easier to customize your experience.
Some pricier models are equipped with extra features, such as heat, rotation, or spinning internal beads. Overall, the enhanced quality of sensation in these sex toys makes them a worthwhile investment for anyone serious about pleasure.