You’ve heard all the hype about the latest must-have product: It’s the last one you’ll ever need! This one does it all! It’s universal! Your favorite blogger/vlogger, your sister-in-law, and the femme that sits next to you in Statistics 1050 all have it and love it! You need it, right?

…well, maybe. But then again, maybe not.

We-Vibe Nova and Anastasia Beverly Hills Modern Renaissance Palette

The Palette is a Lie

If you’re a makeup-wearing femme, chances are pretty decent that you own at least one eyeshadow palette. Every year, companies release palette after palette. Some limited edition, like the much-hyped Too Faced Sweet Peach Palette; some permanent, like Urban Decay’s line of Naked palettes. At Christmastime, you can’t swing a bundle of bondage rope without hitting at least six new palettes.

Why?

Because they sell.

Palettes always look like a great deal, don’t they? You usually get between 8 and, hell, 50+ eyeshadows of varying shades and finishes, all for a supposedly bargain price.

Let’s look at the original Urban Decay Naked palette, the one that really started the mainstream nude eye palette craze. It retails for $54 (USD) and includes 12 shadows and a brush. If we assume the brush is a freebie, the cost breaks down to $4.50 per shadow, and each shadow is .05oz or 1.41g. Some of the shades in each Naked palette are available in singles, but some are exclusive to the palette1. Individual Urban Decay shadows cost $19 and contain 1.5g of product. Mathematically, that makes the Naked palette a great deal: If you were able to buy all of these shadows individually, you’d be spending $228. But…

How many of these shadows do you actually use? In my case, probably 3 or 4, if I’m being generous. Why? Because the quality just isn’t that great, there are too many shimmers, and not all of the shades flatter me. I have individual shadows in my customized Tasteful Nudes palette (pictured below) that perform better, and I find myself reaching for those whenever I want to create a nude eye look.

Now, of course, every rule has an exception. There may be one palette that is indispensable for you. Or, at least, it’s good enough for you to consider it a worthwhile investment. You use (close to) every shade, the formula is good, you can create multiples look with it, there’s nothing else exactly like it… For me, it’s the Anastasia Beverly Hills Modern Renaissance palette, which is absolutely beautiful in both shade and formula but is also not something that will suit everyone. It’s pretty bold. It’s very, very warm.

No matter the palette, it’s not a good deal if you don’t need it and don’t use it.

The Rabbit is a Lie

Which brings us to one of the more controversial opinions I hold: 99% of the time, Rabbit (or dual-action) vibrators are not worth it.

Much like how everyone has slightly different coloring, everyone with a vulva has slightly different vulva topography. Think about your complexion for a second; between the depth of our skin-tone, relative warmth or coolness, and the color of our hair and eyes, there are endless variations on human, and we’re all beautiful. But there’s not a palette in existence that will flatter every human, or even sorta-work for every human. It’s the exact same story with vulvas and Rabbit vibrators.

In order to work optimally, a Rabbit-style vibrator has to have the right length, girth, and shape in the shaft. It also has to have the right kind of clitoral stimulator. It must have the kinds of motors that you personally prefer, be they rumbly or a bit buzzier. Both the internal and external arms must possess the power that you need to orgasm (and if you’re a Power Queen/Power Bean, good luck!). And finally, the clitoral stimulator has to be the right distance away from the internal arm to work with your individual vulva configuration. Some clits are closer to the vaginal canal, while some are farther away. Some are buried, while some are out and about in all their glory.

Just like palettes, there’s probably one or two out there in the vast sea of Rabbit vibes that actually works for you. For me personally, the exception is the We-Vibe Nova. The clitoral arm is something — as far as I know — that is completely unique to the Nova, and the placement is perfect for my anatomy. The size and curvature are also spot on. This is my Holy Grail. But if you don’t know what works for you, finding your holy grail dual-action vibe can be like searching for a needle in a haystack.

Rabbit vibes are far from one-size-fits-all.

How to Shop Smart

If you really, really want a Rabbit or a palette, the first thing you need to do is understand your individual needs.

If you’re looking for an eyeshadow palette, you’re going to want to understand your coloring, know what kind of looks you want to be able to achieve, have a budget in mind, and do your research on product quality. Look for reviews from smaller YouTubers and beauty bloggers who have a good reputation (like my friend Rae).

If you’re looking for a Rabbit vibe, you want to understand your general sex toy preferences as well as your anatomy. Consider the toys that have worked for you in the past. Then, consider the distance between your clit and your vagina. Once you have a good understanding of what you’re looking for, take a look at Lilly’s sex blogger directory and see if you can find a reviewer with similar needs and anatomy. For example, my vulva tends to agree with Epiphora’s, while it’s very different from Lilly’s.

If you’ve never tried a vibrator before, I personally think it’s too difficult to conceptualize what will work for you in Rabbit form — instead, choose something multi-functional, like a high-quality G-spot vibrator that you can also use externally.

L'Amourose Prism V nJoy Pure Wand and customized Z-Palette

…Or Buy Individually

I’m a big fan of both customized palettes — like my Tasteful Nudes (above) — and customized multi-toy set-ups. You can get exactly what you want without compromise. Sometimes it costs a bit more, but sometimes you can actually save some cash. Either way, you’re actually getting something you’ll use that’s tailored to your individual needs, and that’s a good deal.

I’d like to write another post about putting together customized palettes soon, so I’m going to leave the bulk of my information for that post. Here, I’ll tell you that it’s easier than it sounds, and there are lots of high-quality brands out there that produce affordable single shadows. My current favorites are Anastasia Beverly Hills, which I bought in a Black Friday mega-sale, but I’ve heard great things about Makeup Geek, too. If you want a few shades from a particular eyeshadow palette but don’t want to shell out for the whole thing, check YouTube for dupe videos; one of my favorite YouTubers, JamiePaige, does dupe videos regularly.

Now when it comes to sex toys, putting together a small collection that will allow you to mix and match is my favorite method. Quality toys can be expensive, though, which is part of why Rabbits are so tempting. But like I said, a toy that doesn’t work for you is not a good deal, no matter the price.

If internal vibration doesn’t matter so much to you, look for a dildo in the shape, texture, and size that most appeals to you. Some cult favorites include the Funkit Toys Swing V2 (review coming soon!) and the Vixen VixSkin Mustang, but Tantus has an enormous inventory of silicone dildos in a wide array of shapes, textures, and sizes. You could also try the nJoy Pure Wand, or try something from the Colours Pleasures line if you’re on a budget. (PS: All of the dildos I’ve named in this section are anal safe.)

For many folks with vulvas, external vibration is the key. What’s worked for you in the past? What hasn’t? If you’ve only ever gotten off with the Hitachi Magic Wand, it’s not likely that you’ll suddenly be able to orgasm using something like a PicoBong Moka. (You might, however, want to check out the Doxy Wand, the Magic Wand Rechargeable, or the Jimmy Jane Iconic Wand.)

If you’re a vibration newbie, I recommend choosing something multi-functional within your budget. For folks looking to spend just a little, the Turbo Glider is a no-frills, reasonably powerful, body-safe option. The L’Amourose Prism V is great if you want to be able to use your vibrator internally as well as externally, and it costs less than $100 at SheVibe. On the other hand, if you’re positive that you won’t want to use it internally and you crave power in a small form-factor, consider the famed We-Vibe Tango or Touch.

To get you started, I’ve compiled a few sex toy starter packs.

  • On the low-budget end of the spectrum we have the Colours Pleasures dildos starting at $24.99, and the Turbo Glider for $15.99.
  • Alternatively, you could go mid-range with a Tantus dildo like the Acute for $39.99 and the We-Vibe Tango for $79.99.
  • Want an ultra-life-like dildo and a powerful, multi-functional vibrator to go with it? I would recommend something from the Vixen VixSkin line and the We-Vibe Rave.
  • Another beloved combo is any dildo of your choosing, plus the Eroscillator. The Eroscillator’s electric toothbrush-like body means it’s not taking up a great deal of vulva real estate — ie, it won’t get in the way of a dildo.

In Conclusion

Know what you want and what you need. Don’t believe the hype. Look for reviews from trusted sources.

 

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  1. But that doesn’t mean dupes don’t exist!