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Categories

Oct 05 2010

Can Google read your dirty mind?

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by thepleasurechest

If you hadn’t noticed Google recently launched a search feature called Google Instant, which seems capable of reading your mind. That’s true, unless you have a dirty mind. As many people have noted, Google is censoring results that could lead you to porn. It seem that somewhere in the tangle of tubes and wires on Planet Google is a list of banned words and phrases. It’s not surprising to discover that bukkake and fudgepacker made the blacklist, but what about words like lesbian, latina, vulva, bisexual and adult? (Yes, the word “adult” is supposedly a gateway to porn!)

You’ll never find the G-Spot on Google Instant.

Google claims that the blacklist is based on some top secret algorithm that identifies the most common porn searches. They also point out (accurately) that you can still do a traditional search for all of these banned terms– they’re just hidden in the real-time Google Instant search bar.

Searching for the “clitoris” may result in painful inflammation.

Fair enough. But a lot of the words on this list seem downright arbitrary. After a tip from Violet Blue’s blog, we took Google Instant out for a spin and discovered that Pleasure Chest and fellow sex toy merchants Babeland were both on the blacklist. Us? We’re downright wholesome, but we join a distinguished list of sex educators, porn stars, body parts and sex acts that are supposedly too hot for Google Instant. Hacker site 2600 is still building its master list. Find anything they missed? Search your dirty mind, and let ’em know.

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Aug 17 2010

Anal August: Amanda’s Review of Fun Factory’s Bootie

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by thepleasurechest

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Well, the toy Bootie, not their actual backside.

Anal pleasure ahoy!

At first I was skeptical about this way too appropriately-named butt plug. You see, I’ve been burned (not literally, ew) by petite sized butt plugs before. A lot of them seem better engineered for flying out of your ass at terrifying speeds than staying in there and bringing the pleasure. Bootie is different. The tapered tip made it easy to slide in, even without an assistant, and once inside it really stayed put! I walked around, I brushed my teeth, and I even sat down, which is when the flatness of the base really came in handy. It nestles nicely between the cheeks and you would barely know it was there… except for the awesome internal sensations! I’ll admit it, I am a bit of an anal slut, so that helped, but the sweet part was I could feel it stimulating my G-spot through my anal wall. I’m sorry I just said anal wall, it doesn’t sound very sexy, but I couldn’t think of another way to say it. Bootie was also very comfortable to wear during sex and the curve guided the dick nicely toward my G-spot.

Recap: Loved the feel (and easy cleanup) of the smooth silicone, easy to get in, stayed in, felt amazing in. All in all a perfect butt plug for beginners and anyone else who likes mild to moderate anal sensations.

BUT WAIT! THERE’S MORE! Fun Factory has recently released a Bootie Set, which comes with three sizes of the Bootie! Train your ass to take larger toys or expand your enjoyment of anal sex with these three plugs!

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Nov 02 2009

BDSM for Beginners

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by thepleasurechest

As I mentioned before, we have some exciting web changes coming soon. Until then, we’ve all been seriously busy (sex) bees curating, creating, and coming up with new ways to connect with our lovely clientele (that’s you).

Here is little taste of what’s to come in our expanded information and education sections of our website.

BDSM for Beginners

You’ve probably seen some form of BDSM depicted on television, in movies, or even snuck into an otherwise “vanilla” porno. Maybe it made you curious, maybe it turned you on, or maybe it turned your partner on and now you sleep with one eye open, afraid that some night you’ll wake up to get a glass of water and find yourself tied to the bed. Well fear not, adventurous friend, for BDSM is all about mutual consent and negotiated boundaries. There’s a whole lot to learn, and we carry several books and DVDs to help you along on your journey, but this is quick guide to get you started.

We hear a lot of questions from people about BDSM. Here are some common ones:

“Wait, what is BDSM again?”

BDSM is the commonly used catchall term for bondage, discipline, submission, dominance, sadism, and masochism. It can include role-playing with dominant and submissive roles, restraints, sensation play (exploring with ice cubes or hot wax, or deprivation with gags or blindfolds), impact play (such as spanking or flogging), and much more.

“Doesn’t all this hurt? Why would anyone like pain?”

The idea that BDSM is all about pain is incorrect, although most agree that certain things that would be painful in a street fight, like someone scraping their nails across your skin, can feel great and be totally hot in the right context. For many BDSM players, the pleasure is not only in the sensation, but the connection and intimacy between partners in a situation where communication and trust is of the utmost importance. The power dynamics involved in BDSM, whether you are playing master and submissive or calculus teacher and failing football star eager to get the grade, can be extremely erotic.

“Okay, so maybe I like it when my partner blindfolds me and tickles my feet no matter how much I try to wiggle away, but what if I REALLY want them to stop?”

In the BDSM world, players make up a “safe word” to let their play partner know when they need to stop or slow down. Words like “stop” or “ouch” don’t work well as safe words because, especially in the midst of intense power play or discipline, they can seem like part of the action. It’s important, for that reason, to pick a very specific safe word that you and your partner will remember easily. It can be as simple as “yellow” for slow down and “red” for stop, or you can get more creative, as long as it stands out.

“I’m really liking the sound of this. Uh oh, does that mean I’m a freaky sexual deviant?”

No way! The thing to remember is that the motto for the BDSM community is “Safe, Sane, and Consensual.” Sometimes, especially as depicted in the mainstream media, scenes of BDSM can seem intimidating at best and downright abusive at worst. This is not the case at all because, in real life, people involved in BDSM acts have discussed their boundaries, desires, and safe words ahead of time. They discourage or ban use of drugs or alcohol during play or playing with an unclear mind.

Keep in mind that enjoying BDSM doesn’t mean you have to give up your job at Pottery Barn and move into a dungeon. Some people are “lifestyle players” within their relationships or daily lives, but many choose to only bust out the ball gag late at night or bring out the suspension hooks on the weekends or simply add a little spice to their regular sex lives with a blindfold and ice cubes. You can incorporate as much or as little BDSM into your life as you want. It’s all about what turns you and your partner on.

“Wow, thanks! I totally feel so much better! Should I go out and get a leather face mask, bullwhip, and spreader bar right now???”

Enthusiasm noted and appreciated, but no. When beginning to explore BDSM, it’s best to start out slowly, not only for safety’s sake, but for your wallet as well, until you know a little more about what you like and how to use more advanced implements. Since communication is so important in the practice of BDSM, the first place to start, of course, is by talking with your partner. If you need some guidance, use the Yes/No/Maybe List, one of our favorite tools to get people talking about sex, desires, and boundaries. Depending on your comfort level you can try role-playing and begin to play with power dynamics.

Reading books like The New Bottoming Book and The New Topping Book, SM 101, or Fetish and watching instructional or erotic BDSM DVDs like the classic fetish extravaganza Fashionistas can help you learn new tricks and figure out what kinds of things tickle (or slap) your fancy the most. Speaking of a sexy slap session, spanking is a great place to start exploring. Use your hand at first so you have optimal control of the impact and stroke. Focus on fleshy parts like the ass and thighs, and eventually you can try something like a crop or slapper.

“Is there any other gear you’d recommend for beginners?”

As far as restraints go, we highly recommend using cuffs made of neoprene or leather that buckle at the wrist or ankle. You can attach them together using a piece of chain, rope, or an Under the Bed Restraints kit. Traditional handcuffs or silk scarves can tighten suddenly and cause pain and loss of circulation. We also love guiding absolute beginners to the PC Bondage Tape because it is safe and versatile. The vinyl tape sticks to itself but not your skin, so it’s sturdy but easy to remove. You can practice using it to bind hands, feet, as a gag or blindfold, even for total mummification without the fear of cutting off circulation or ripping off anything important when it’s removed. A light flogger, pinwheel, or adjustable nipple clamps are a great for exploring sensation play.

The most important thing to remember (aside from your safe word) is that communication and trust are key elements to enjoyable BDSM play, and any sex, really. It’s okay to experiment and have fun, just as it’s okay to have a deep spiritual experience. Our bodies and their varied responses to stimuli are what make sexual encounters so exciting and pleasurable.

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Jun 18 2008

Sexpert Shopping

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by thepleasurechest

Frontiers Magazine exposé.
Issue: May 6th 2008
Author: Michael Anthony

It might be easy for Salt-N-Pepa to “talk about sex baby”- but not so much for the everyday gay. Now don’t get me wrong we love our bawdy and brash talk: little “No she didn’t!” conversations around the morning cooler, 2 A.M. text messages about what Bobbi “stuck” in his “basket” last weekend, and clandestine copulation-related coffee talk over lattes. Yes – gossiping girls, city sexperts, and lipstick mafia members – we love dishing on other’s behind-closed-doors comings and goings (and cummings). That is, however, until the topic-of-conversation tables are turned and we, ourselves, find our own love life the subject of analysis, both by self and via others.

Sexpert Shopping

What turns you on? What gets you hard? What makes your wet? What gets you off? What makes you shoot your wad? (Uncomfortable yet? Cuz lord knows I am!)

Now let me be the first to say, I wouldn’t consider myself, by any means, a “conservative.” Granted, I’m a by-birth Midwestern boy and raised Roman Catholic, but I’m also that uncle that drinks way too much at family events and talks about his rendezvous-ridden life in LaLa Land. Tried and true, whether it be Christmas, Thanksgiving or just another Sunday afternoon dinner, I can sure silence my familial dining room with a single “So, last weekend, I’m on Gay.com and…”

But ask me a serious and personal question about the yearning of my inner-loins, and I am all girlish giggles and witty deflection. That’s why, when my editor offered me to be one of the first to experience the personal shopping program at West Hollywood’s famed Pleasure Chest, I jumped (or, rather, tentatively stumbled) at the chance. Maybe a little Q&A with a sexual pro-in-the-know would enlighten my reserved sexuality; or perhaps, I would just collapse into a fetal ball and cry my PG-13 sensibilities to sleep.

A Monday evening appointment was set at the Pleasure Chest with a personal shopping instructor named “Ginger.” (Ginger? Fine for a Spice Girl or a Gilligan’s Island stowaway, but the liaison to my sexual awakening? Please tell me that there’s no pole dancing involved.)

Meeting Ginger face to face, though quickly quelled my fears. A nose ring? Yes. Multiple tattoos? Affirmative. But the kindest eyes and sweetest spirit; exactly what I needed to begin my slow but sure journey towards man-on-man self discovery. We jumped right in and Ginger so matter-of-factly asked: “Have you ever been to The Pleasure Chest?”

“Uh…No, Ginger. As chance would have it, I have not.” (Duh!) “Well, then let me take you on a tour.”

Our trek around PC began innocently enough; the bachelorette gag gifts, the 6-inch dildos, and the leather harnesses. Been there, done that; nothing jaw-dropping and squirm-inducing for ill’ ole me. But then, as we ventured deeper into the Chest, my eyes widened with questioning curiosity, both intrigued and afraid in equal measure: pony play, urethra sonar, and medical supplies. “You do what with that?” I clumsily asked.

But the explanations came quick and calmly from Ginger. Effortlessly, she described each of The Pleasure Chest’s products with an open and free tone; within minutes, I was cool and collected, my intrigue rid of its former fears. Eventually, we retreated to a small seating area near the front of the store and began what feels like free-flowing “girl talk.” “First off,” Ginger said, “I’m not a sexual therapist. I’m here to help you get comfortable with our toys but not to deal with a trauma. That’s better left to a professional.”

But once I assured here that I am truly trauma-free and a willing sexual explorer, we talked. What turns me on. What gets me hard. What gets me off. What makes me shoot my wad. (Here is where I digress, as every time my boyfriend picks up a paper, I have, in black and white, printed our deepest and darkest secrets. He’s happy to talk with me in private, but not in public. So, as I’ve promised, I’ll shut my yap when it comes to the details.)

Ginger suggested that I come back next week, with my man in tow. She half-jokingly—but actually seriously—gave me “homework”: a three-page sheet detailing any and every possible sexual act on the face of the planet. My BF and I spent an evening drinking wine and rating our “Have Done,” “Have Not Done,” “Would Like to Try,” and “Would Never Like to Try” options.

“You’ve done that?! Ewww!” “You wanna try that?! Hotness!” “You’re never doing that to me!” “Let’s do that…right now!”

The following week, Ginger met with my mate and me together. We reviewed our homework. The three of us laughed hysterically and yet, we really learned a thing or two. A sex toy was purchased-which shall, again remain nameless-and a fun night was had by all…well, not with Ginger (of course!), but with my fine piece of man- candy.

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