Chances are that at some point over the years, you’ve come across Cosmo’s infamous sex tip to put a donut on a penis and eat it off. It’s pretty ubiquitous. What you probably don’t know is how that tip came to be, how it has been recycled over the years, and how it plays out in practice.
Thanks to some rigorous journalism, we have the full story. Amanda Hess traced the donut/penis tip all the way back to 1995, where it appeared in a sexual recipe book called The Foreplay Gourmet, and then again in 2000, in a “sexual exercise” book where it was jokingly suggested as a tool to strengthen penile muscles.
But the tip graced the pages of Cosmopolitan for the first time in June of 2003. The cover of the magazine hinted: “99 Ways to Touch Him: These Fresh, Frisky Tips Will Thrill Every Inch of Your Guy (Our Favorite Requires a Glazed Doughnut).” An anonymous source elaborated: “My girlfriend gets a glazed donut and sticks my penis through the hole. She nibbles around it, stopping to suck me every once in a while. The sugar beads from her mouth tingle on my tip.”
The tip was repeated in future issues of the magazine and even in Cosmo-related books. Kate White, editor of Cosmopolitan from 1998 through 2012, admitted that sex tips could be recycled because “readers would age out of the magazine.” Plus, it was a different time, and even the silliest of tips represented an attitude shift:
. . . in 1998, young women had few outlets for reading about sex outside of the Starr Report. Crowding around a Cosmopolitan beat sneaking to the family desktop that moved at dial-up speed . . . only when White took over did the magazine actually get “very candid” about just what a fun, fearless female does when she hops into bed. [White says,] “We gave them permission to enjoy having sex.” For all its ludicrousness, Cosmopolitan presented a vision of limitless sexual experimentation, no shame.
The internet is faster now, and women are arguably more open about their sex lives. But still, the donut/penis tip lives on, joining the ranks of other strange household objects that Cosmo has posited as sex accouterments. Thankfully, there are brave souls in the world willing to test drive Cosmo’s ideas. Anna Pulley recently tried these five:
- “Slip a donut around his penis, and slowly eat it off.”
- “Sprinkle a little pepper under his nose right before he climaxes. Sneezing can feel similar to an orgasm and amplify the feel-good effects.”
- “Feed each other ice cream [in the dark]. Not being able to see means more spilling, which means more licking up the mess.”
- “Press a fork (firmly, but don’t break the skin or anything) into different parts of his body — his butt cheeks, his pecs, his thighs.”
- “As you’re riding him, clamp down on his earlobes with your fingers, and pull on them to rock yourself forward and backward.”
So how was the donut tip in action? Well, it certainly resulted in some hilarious conundrums:
Since I love donuts, I thought this would be the most enjoyable experience to try, out of all the tips. But it turns out that being picky about the donuts you want to put in your face works against you when you want to put donuts on a penis. I first searched for a chocolate old-fashioned — not only because it’s delicious, but also because the hole is often bigger than the ones in yeast donuts. After going to three different donut shops and failing, I settled on a common chocolate glazed donut, whose hole measured three-quarters of an inch (yes, I measured it).
. . . What the advice doesn’t mention is this: It’s virtually impossible to consume food and blow someone at the same time. This extra work made the dough job last a lot longer than it would have otherwise because I kept having to stop to chew and swallow before I could take anything else in my mouth.
Meanwhile, the pepper and fork tips made for lackluster sexual experiences, while the ice cream tip was deemed the best: “Ice cream, it turns out, is something not even Cosmo can ruin.” And although Pulley found that earlobes don’t provide nearly enough surface area to grasp, she was just happy “to try a tip that didn’t hinge on Cosmo’s insistence that I have sex with as many household items as possible.”
Since Joanna Coles took over Cosmopolitan in 2012, the magazine has been making a concerted effort to phase out sex tips that are only about pleasing a man, while giving an extra wink to the tips that may seem a bit off-the-wall. Anna Pulley tried all the tips on her female partner, and although most of them were failures, none of them failed because of her partner’s gender.
Nonetheless, the infamous donut-on-a-penis idea was revived again last month. Writer Krista McHarden admitted it was Cosmo’s “wackiest, craziest, most batshit battiest sex tip,” but actually, she clarified, it’s “suuuuper fun.”
Each Tuesday this April, 10% of our sales at She Bop will go to the Portland Women’s Crisis Line (PWCL). PWCL is a hugely important organization that offers 24/7 support to survivors of sexual assault and domestic violence. They offer services such as safety planning, peer support, crisis intervention, needs assessments, and referrals to community resources. They have specialized programs for sexual assault and sex workers. PWCL is an invaluable asset to our community, and we are honored to be able to give back to them for the tireless work that they do.
April is also Sexual Assault Awareness Month. According to RAINN, someone in the U.S. is sexually assaulted every 2 minutes. This unfortunate statistic is a reality for 1 out of every 6 American women. Here are a few resources for thinking about and combating sexual assault.
- Yes Means Yes
- What Can Men Do?
- Violence Unsilenced — survivors tell their stories
- End the Backlog — working to reduce the number of untested rape kits
- Rape Culture 101
- Fighting Ableism Fights Sexual Assault
It may come as little surprise for those who regularly engage in BDSM, but researchers are proving why sadomasochism is so alluring: it may actually lead to a different level of consciousness.
James Ambler, a graduate student in psychology at Northern Illinois University, set out to understand why some people engage in sexual behaviors that others consider painful. He enlisted 14 “switches” (people who enjoy both giving and receiving pain), who were each randomly assigned a role for an ensuing sexual experience.
Afterward, participants took a cognitive test called the Stroop task and also reported on their “flow,” a state of focus and enjoyment that people enter when engrossed in an activity.
Both givers and receivers described similar levels of “flow” during the sexual experience, but pain-receivers produced lower Stroop task scores. Low Stroop scores are associated with short-term dips in function in the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex, a part of the brain that manages memory and control.
What does this mean? It means that during sadomasochistic activities, the brain is forcing blood flow away from the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex — facilitating an altered state of consciousness.
This conclusion is bolstered by another couple of researchers at the same university. They studied “energy pulls,” during which folks get temporary skin piercings through which hooks and ropes are looped, then pulled taut. Saliva samples from the 22 participants showed a spike in cortisol, a stress hormone, during the ritual — but participants reported feeling both less stressed and more connected to others.
Researchers believe this disparity is due to an altered state of consciousness, as well as a reduction in function in that same dorsolateral prefrontal cortex. Among other things, that part of the brain is responsible for distinguishing the self from others, so less blood flow to the area can cause a sensation of oneness.
These results may be fairly general, but they lay the groundwork for future studies. Down the line, researchers hope to enact real-time monitoring of participants to examine the physiological and psychological components of BDSM and how they mingle during a sexual experience. Now that would be really interesting.
Thursday, May 29th — 7:30 p.m. — $25
This class will be held at the Q Center, three blocks north from us at 4115 N Mississippi.
All female-bodied people have a G-spot and posses the ability to ejaculate. Learn how to get this wonderful feminine fountain flowing! Sex educator and author Deborah Sundahl will teach you all you need to know about female ejaculation and the G-spot, such as where the G-spot is located, how to stimulate it, and how to have a G-spot orgasm. Find out about female ejaculate’s taste, smell, chemical make-up and quantity, as well as its ancient, cross-cultural herstory. Discover the best sexual positions for stimulating the G-spot, plus tips for your partner on helping you ejaculate. Finally, learn what a flowing feminine fountain really looks like with a 10-minute movie!
Deborah Sundahl is an international sex educator who specializes in teaching women and couples about the G-spot and female ejaculation. With 28 years of experience, she is the leading expert and pioneer in this field, and has coached hundreds of women on finding their G-spots. She wrote the first, groundbreaking book on female ejaculation in 2003, Female Ejaculation and the G-spot, and was a nominee for the 2007 Obelisk Award for Lifetime Achievement in Erotic Writing and Publishing. She has appeared on local, national and international radio and TV, and has been interviewed in magazines such as Esquire, Playboy, Penthouse, and Spin. She has also directed several instructional DVDs, such as Female Ejaculation: The Workshop and Female Ejaculation for Couples.
This workshop is open to all genders and sexual appetites!
Limited space available — sign up online!
Thursday, May 15th — 7:30 p.m. — $20
Are you interested in anal pleasure but not sure where to get started? Already tried anal play but wanting to learn some fun tricks and techniques? Whether you’re brand new to the wonderful world of anal or already have some backdoor experience, this class is sure to teach you something new!
In this educational and humorous workshop, AJ will confront taboos, go over anal anatomy, prostate, and the G-spot, discuss anal penetration for beginners, and show great positions for anal sex. She’ll also cover safety and hygiene and give you the inside scoop on all the best lubes and anal toys! This class is open to all genders and sexual appetites.
AJ (aka Amory Jane) is one of She Bop’s in-house sex educators. She graduated with a master’s degree from Lewis & Clark College, where she studied Sex Therapy and Marriage, Couple, & Family Counseling. She has facilitated multiple discussion groups and taught dozens of sex education workshops around Portland and the Midwest. She also moonlights as a sex-positive relationship coach.
This class has already taken place. Thanks for attending!
BDSM — whips, chains, and lots of black leather, right? Well… sometimes! But the world of kink and BDSM covers so much more, from a little rough sex to the opportunity to explore your personal boundaries, both emotional and physical.
If you’ve been curious about something you’ve read, or turned on by a scene in a movie that’s a little rougher than the usual fare, this class is for you! You’ll learn how to use those amazing toys and have the chance to see what they feel like. We’ll also be discussing role play, power dynamics, and resources for finding the local BDSM community.
Bring your fantasies, your questions, and your curiosity and get ready for a hot evening!
Annamarie is a passionate sex educator with a knowledge fetish. Sexuality has been a life-long interest, with a focus on embracing our entire sexual selves, growing as erotic beings, and creating community. She has been presenting and teaching workshops on sexuality, polyamory, and BDSM in the Portland area and around the west coast since 2006. You can learn more at her website.
This class has already taken place. Thanks for attending!
Dr. Ruth Westheimer’s career as a sex educator began in the early 1980s, when she was enlisted to host a radio show called Sexually Speaking. NBC was worried about allowing live phone calls, so they began by taking listener questions via letters. Later, when the show went live with a 7-second digital delay, Dr. Ruth was already becoming a household name. Listeners were enamored with her jolly demeanor and frank answers.
Soon after, Dr. Ruth launched her own TV show, which was nationally syndicated and led to more and more TV appearances. She taught and lectured at colleges, wrote a whole host of books, endorsed a sex toy, and continued to dole out sex advice. With her relaxed approach, she helped usher in a new age of openly discussing sex.
What you may not know about Dr. Ruth is that she has transitioned into the digital age remarkably well. Not only does she have a website (which, of course, has a Q&A section), she also has a YouTube channel and Twitter account. And yes, they are just as delightful as you might imagine.
On her YouTube channel, which has over 1,500 subscribers, Dr. Ruth posts pithy, adorable answers to questions that online fans ask her:
The channel also includes footage from her old TV shows, movie and book reviews, musings about getting a kiss from President Obama, and more. Her video review of Fifty Shades of Grey is particularly good:
On Dr. Ruth’s Twitter account, she tweets about the latest sex-related news and studies. Reading through her timeline, you get the sense she just wants to encourage people to have more, satisfying sex. A valiant goal!
What's the best position for Valentine's sex? One that won't tire you out so you can have seconds!
— Dr. Ruth Westheimer (@AskDrRuth) February 14, 2014
Notice the days are getting longer? No? That's good as I don't want you staring out the window but looking partner in the eyes
— Dr. Ruth Westheimer (@AskDrRuth) January 7, 2014
Congrats to @jimmyfallon for reinvigorating The Tonight Show. Just don't let him ruin your sex life. If necessary have sex earlier.
— Dr. Ruth Westheimer (@AskDrRuth) February 18, 2014
A writer from Gizmodo recently visited the factory of Crave, a small luxury sex toy company based in San Francisco. They are perhaps most known for the Duet and Solo, swanky USB-rechargeable clitoral vibes, but they also make high-end accessories such as nipple tassels, cuffs, and nipple vibrators.
Crave is one of the only vibrator companies that manufactures and assembles their toys in the US. They make almost all their components on-site. Without the need to acquire prototypes from an overseas facility, they are able to tweak their designs with much more specificity than other companies:
. . . each stage of the process is marked by lots and lots of hands-on trials with a wide range of real life women. Chang follows-up with volunteers with online surveys or one-on-one interviews to figure out what worked and what didn’t. Models get refined, and tested again. And again. And again.
“Factory,” it seems, may be a strong word, since Crave is still a small operation. Their machinery includes a CNC mill, which is used to machine parts and molds, and a hot pink compression molder (or “vibrator waffle maker”) which presses two heated plates around some silicone. A piece of paper taped to the side of the compression molder hilariously reads “FUCKING hot.”
Upstairs, in the workshop, the toys are assembled by hand. Each vibrator is charged, depleted (Gizmodo reports: “when all of the vibes are switched on, it sounds like a massive hive of amorous bees”), and re-charged, then vacuum-tested on a special device to confirm waterproof capabilities. Next comes a hit of antibacterial spray, a cloth wipe-down, and finally, each toy is tucked into its leather travel pouch and packaged up.
Crave also hosts Build-a-Vibe workshops around the country, letting folks get a hands-on look at the assembly process — and build a Duet in the process. A lot of meticulous work goes into the design, manufacture, and assembly of Crave’s toys. It’s really interesting to see all of the tiny steps involved with the creation of these beautiful vibrators.
The annual day of love is right around the corner — and you know we have the goods to help you celebrate in style! Sometimes, though, it can be hard to find just the right gift to woo someone with, or the perfect thing to splurge on for yourself. So we’ve rounded up our top recommendations for sexy items to make this Valentine’s Day memorable (and pleasurable!).
Spanish dildo-makers BS Atelier make some of the most fun and colorful silicone dildos we’ve ever seen. Which one best fits the personality of your gift recipient (or yourself) — Rainbow, Vaca, Custom Lines, or perhaps one of the new ones with hearts on them that we’ll be getting in time for Valentine’s Day? Harness compatible and topped with curved and pronounced heads, these dildos can be excellent G-spot stimulators or prostate stimulators — whatever you want them to be!
Once you try the Jaz Motion, you’ll never go back to using pillows to prop yourself up during sex. This half-circle-shaped positioning pillow is made of furniture-grade polyurethane foam, which enables it to strike the perfect balance between comfort and support. Used with the flat side down, it can open up and enhance a variety of positions; used with the curved side down, it will gently rock back and forth with your motions. The Jaz Motion’s microsuede cover is removable and machine washable, and it even features a moisture-proof liner.
Cock rings can help a penis stay erect, add vibration for a partner, and even enhance orgasm. One of our latest cock rings is this adorable one from the Wonderland series. Not only is it made of silky 100% silicone, but the included bullet vibe has 10 (count ‘em! 10!) functions.
An array of small things
Here’s an idea! What about combining several smaller gifts into a night of fun?
First, start with a card from Unusual Occasion — we love their straightforward format of a single word plus an illustration (such as “sex kitten” and “sweetie pie”). Then, pick out something for the sweet tooth: X-Rated Valentine Hearts or Risque Valentine Hearts come with phrases you won’t find on typical candy hearts. Follow that up with a Feather Tickler, then top the night off with the a massage, using the melted oil from a candle in the Seasonal Massage Candle Trio, which contains special edition romantic scents.
Now in its fourth generation, the remote-controlled We-Vibe remains a top choice for wearable couples’ vibrators. Meant to be worn vaginally during penetrative play, the We-Vibe 4 also makes an excellent discreet underwear vibe. Either way, it hugs the vulva, sending vibrations to the clitoris and the G-spot — and anything else that joins the penetration party. New in this edition of the toy? A re-imagined tighter and smaller shape, more power, and a more adjustable remote control equipped with 6 vibration modes.
Whether you already enjoy anal play or are simply interested in trying it out, we love these solid stainless steel butt plugs made by njoy. Stainless steel is both weighty and very receptive to temperature, and the Pure Plug comes in three sizes to suit every taste. Each has a tapered neck and a looped base that sits between the cheeks for comfortable wear. Want something more prostate-focused? Try the Pfun. Want something bigger? Check out the Pure Plug 2.0.
Need a toy for someone who loves new gadgets? The Stronic Drei is part of Fun Factory’s Pulsator line, arguably one of the most innovative sex toy lines to be released in recent years. Rather than vibrating like other toys, Pulsators thrust, in a motion that is both incredibly unique and highly stimulating for those who like the sensation of movement. The rechargeable Stronic Drei is the latest shape in the line, featuring a ribbed shaft and curved tip for added sensation.
An erotic DVD
It’s hard to pick just one DVD, since tastes vary so much from person to person. But we can tell you what’s new an exciting in the world of hot videos!
After taking anonymous sex fantasy submissions on her site X Confessions, erotic filmmaker Erika Lust turned them into explicit short films. X Confessions, which just came out, showcases the first 10 short films, with tantalizing titles such as “Hold Me So Tight it Hurts,” “I Pegged My Boyfriend,” and “A Blowjob is Always a Great Last Minute Gift Idea,” and themes including group sex, roleplay, erotic games, and bondage.
Finally! An attachment that harnesses the power of a wand-style vibrator and concentrates it on the penis! This stretchy TPR sleeve will fit over the head of any large wand vibrator, such as the Magic Wand, Bodywand Original, or Acuvibe, transmitting intense vibration as well as texture to the penis that slides into it. Bonus: the transparent material gives you a peek at the action!
Need a hefty double-ended dildo? Look no further than the Fun Factory Sonic. Made of silky 100% silicone and super easy to clean, it is incredibly flexible, long enough to reach all the good spots, and best of all — meant to be shared. Now the question is, who gets the smaller end and who wants the bigger more bulbous end?
Wondering what’s new in the shop this month? For starters, we got the Bliss Tips Wand Attachment, which can turn your wand vibe into a double pronged stimulator, and the remote-controlled LELO Hula Beads – which can turn a night on the town into a playful, interactive bit of foreplay. These beads create a unique internal sensation by rotating and vibrating, while the remote control lets a partner in on the action.
In the shop you can also find a special Red edition variety pack of Sir Richard’s condoms — 5% of their proceeds will go to the Global Fund to fight AIDS (and, as always, they donate a condom to a developing country for each one you purchase). We also have the silicone Charm 2 dildo, which is perfect for those looking for length without added girth.
Welcome to She Bop’s blog!
She Bop is a women-owned sex toy boutique specializing in body safe products and education. Our mission is to promote healthy and safe sexuality by offering quality products and educational workshops in a fun and comfortable environment. She Bop welcomes people of all genders and sexual orientations.
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- Customers often ask us about the Clone-a-Willy procedure. We found a fun video that explains, complete with cucumber! http://t.co/dWtvexUu9s
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- Basic Rights Oregon
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- Bradley Angle
- BUST Magazine
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- In Other Words
- Mississippi Studios
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- Pants-Off Productions
- Portland Oregon Women's Film Festival
- Portland Women's Crisis Line
- Progressive Pleasure Club
- Pucker Up
- Q Center
- Queer Resource Center
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