A few months ago, I contacted my dears at Lovehoney.de (Yes! A Lovehoney just for us in Deutschland!) and asked to review a shaving cream and post-shave oil. I’d been dealing with some ferocious ingrown hairs, and couldn’t seem to find a proper shave cream in any of the local adult stores. Lovehoney.de graciously sent me Dare to Be Bare shave cream and post-shave oil.
If you have sensitive skin, you know how much of a pain in the ass shaving can be. Whether it’s your armpits, legs, or bikini area, you might break out in a rash or end up trying to dig an ingrown out at the world’s most awkward angle. So why do we do this?
You know why. It’s a social norm thing.
Some people have strong body hair preferences, but I’m really not one of them. Sometimes I let my armpit hair grow for a month or more. I went a year without shaving my pubes. Recently, I’ve noticed a lot more femme people sporting body hair. Is it coming into vogue? Are we entering an era of hair acceptance? I hate to sound pessimistic, but probably not. It’s probably going to remain a fringe trend.
Mostly, I want to focus on how to shave safely. Most of us simply cannot shave with just a dull blade and water. It ends in blood and tears. Using a dull blade can cause all kinds of ills, from cuts that can get infected to ingrown hairs. Buy fresh blades, and your body will thank you.
I did not take my own advice here. About three months ago, I was shaving recklessly. It started with a tiny bump in my armpit. The bump turned red. I thought it was a pimple, or an allergic reaction to my roll-on deodorant. I switched to a deodorant spray, and it calmed down a little, but remained. Over the course of a few weeks, it became bigger and more painful. At this point, I knew something was wrong, but I wasn’t sure if it warranted a trip to the doctor. (Spoiler: I should have gone to the doctor.) At one point, it was so inflamed and painful that I couldn’t wear anything with a seam in the armpit. At that point, I decided to get aggressive.
Do not continue reading if you’re squeamish. I’ll put another statement in bold when it’s safe to read again.
I applied a hot compress, and after a few applications of antibiotic cream, I noticed a head, similar to that of a pimple. I left it alone over night. The next morning, while showering, it began to pop of its own accord. I helped it along. I have never seen so much pus come out of anything besides an abscess. It was disgusting. Finally, a long-ish brown hair appeared. That filthy bastard. After over a month of pain and an unsightly lump, I vanquished the hair. For days, I applied antibiotic cream, hoping it wouldn’t scar. (Or worse, re-emerge.)
Okay, you’re safe.
So, this is why I feel it’s very important to choose a good shaving cream, like Dare to be Bare. I usually prefer creams found in adult stores, because they’re more frequently geared toward professionals, like exotic dancers. If anyone knows how to keep things looking good, it’s a dancer. Also, while these creams do tend to cost more, the ingredients are of much higher quality. Dare to Be Bare feels silky smooth, contains no parabens, and is not tested on animals. It is mildly fragranced like baby powder, but my sensitive skin didn’t have a problem with that.
When it came time to shave, I picked up a new razor and went to town. I noticed that on my legs – which often suffer from razor burn, but never ingrowns – Dare to be Bare worked like a charm. It left them smooth and well-hydrated.
My armpits were divided. One of my armpits is great, and the other is a problem child. The easy going pit loved Dare to be Bare – it was smooth, soft, no problems. My problem armpit was slightly red in a few spots after shaving, but I did not experience any ingrowns.
I was pleasantly surprised when it came time to tackle the pubes. I did need to use a lot of product, but that might be because I’m overly cautious. I was left with much, much less irritation than usual. I did a completely bare shave, just to see how it would go. My skin was smooth and soft, not at all irritated, by about 6-12 hours post-shave.
After shaving, I applied their post-shave Dare to be Bare Oil. It contains Tea Tree, which makes perfect sense for its antibacterial healing properties. As such, it has a little bit of an herbal fragrance, but I didn’t personally find it unpleasant. As for preventing ingrowns, I think it did a great job. I haven’t had another ingrown catastrophe yet. (Full disclosure: I did have a small ingrown situation along my bikini line about 3 weeks ago, but I believe that was from wearing underwear with irritating seams. It was no where near as bad as the Great Armpit Ingrown of 2014.)
As it is, I’ll continue shaving only when I feel like it. Whatever your body hair preference is, you rock it. But when you do shave, shave smart. I’ll definitely continue to use Dare to be Bare when I do.
Dankeschön, Lovehoney.de! Dare To Be Bare ist sehr gut. Sie kaufen Dare to be Bare in einem Kit, komplett mit Post-Shave Öl zu sein, denn 23.99€.
For US customers, you can get a Dare to be Bare from Lovehoney.com for $22.99!
When UberKinky approached me about reviewing, I had my hesitations. I’m not exactly the kinkiest of people. I love sex toys, obviously, but it doesn’t get too much more interesting than that. But after speaking with their affiliate and review director, I decided to give it a shot since there are a wide range of products available on their website. For my first review, I chose the Monarch Noir Nipple Clamps.
You see, these clamps are called Monarch because this style of clamp is called a butterfly clamp. Sounds nice, but in reality, they exert a lot more pressure on your nipples than the softer alligator clamps. (This is so backwards. Everything I learned about context clues is useless here.)
Generally, I’m not a huge fan of nipple play. To get a little dark for a second, it reminds me of some abuse that I dealt with as a teen. But I’ve wanted to pierce my nipples for a few years now, so I thought clamps might be a nice introduction to nipple pain. I was both right and wrong. Introduction? Yes. Nice? Not so much. It turns out I really do not enjoy the type of stimulation that these provide.
However, that’s not to say I think they’re a bad addition to your sex life. They’re inexpensive, so you can explore a sensation that might be new to you without committing to a hefty price tag. I’m not an expert on clamps, but they appear to be nicely made. The design is straightforward, sexy, and easy to use. If you have a pair or two of tweezer or alligator style clamps that you enjoy and you’re looking for something a little more powerful, I would definitely recommend these.
You can also read more about how to use nipple clamps here. I love that UberKinky includes informative articles in their shop! As far as I’m concerned, education is a must for kink.
Thanks so much, UberKinky!
Please tell me I’m not the only one who thought of Gob Bluth upon hearing the name of this new-ish kegel exerciser?
I like the idea of the Magic Banana. It took years to develop, and it’s touted as a sexual exploration tool, which I think is an apt label for most sex toys. It’s billed as both a kegel exerciser and a g-spot stimulator. It’s evident that a lot of work went into making this toy, and it was actually designed by a woman (with a vagina).
Before testing the Magic Banana, I read the box and read through the manual. Nothing in the manual was surprising to me, but I think it contained great info for a kegel or g-spot newbie. It was very body-positive, and not chock-full of the typical heteronormative language that we see a lot of in mass-market sex toy manufacture. Seriously, bravo, Janeson Rayne! Unfortunately, I could not find the material listed anywhere on or inside of the package. (According to SheVibe, it’s made of completely body-safe FDA approved plastic, and judging by the lack of smell and totally smooth, non-sticky texture, I believe that.)
The loop is rather large, but it’s also quite flexible. As instructed, I washed the Magic Banana before use with some mild dish soap. There’s a curve to the Magic Banana’s loop, and the instructions say to use with the curve pointed up if you’re laying on your back or sitting up. You simply squeeze the two sides of the loop together and insert, with or without a water-based lubricant. I went without in order to see what the texture felt like without a barrier. It glided very smoothly, and the slight curve did lightly stimulate my g-spot. However, when I tried to flex, I couldn’t feel anything. I slipped a finger in to confirm: There was no flexing effect on the Magic Banana. I guess I’ve been faithfully doing my kegels to the point where they just kind of clamp around the Magic Banana and hold it together no matter what. Unfortunately, this makes it a completely null kegel exerciser for me.
When it comes to g-spot exploration, I actually really like the Magic Banana. (Note that I say exploration and not significant stimulation.) Because the curved tip of the loop is small, it really helped me to pinpoint where my g-spot is, something I’ve had trouble doing in the past. It felt nice in use, but I wouldn’t describe it as intense. Because the loop is so flexible, I couldn’t get the right amount of pressure to really get my g-spot going. I built up some serious arousal, but I had to reach for my Mia 2 to get the job done.
When it came time to clean the Magic Banana again, it was easy as pie. The smoothness of the loop makes for a quick clean, as opposed to toys with crevices or lots of texture. I was, however, mildly disappointed to realize I couldn’t blow bubbles with it.
I think I’ll continue to use the Magic Banana to hone my g-spot exploration, but as for kegel exercise, it just doesn’t do the trick.
Thank you, SheVibe!
Over the weekend, because my partner was going to an academic conference, I had the awesome opportunity to visit Caitlin from Sex-ational! My prior experiences in Philly had been nice, but spent entirely with an ex boyfriend, so it was fun to reclaim the city a little bit. Until the last 12 hours, it was a fantastic trip – but I’ll get to that later.
We met up for dinner on Friday night and went to an amazing restaurant called Vedge. I’m not sure if I’ve mentioned it much, but my partner is a vegetarian, and I try to go along with his lifestyle as much as possible. Anyway, if you have the chance to go to Vedge, do it. It’s actually a vegan restaurant, which I didn’t realize until I read the website again. Some people might call that a good thing, but I like vegans, so I’ll just say that it makes it a little bit of an easier to sell to the meat & potatoes crowd. The atmosphere was very trendy, and they served some of the richest, most succulent food I’ve ever had. It’s more of a tapas experience than an individual entrees kind of meal, so I recommend sharing it with friends of similar tastes. (You may also find yourself ordering a pizza 3 hours later. Don’t judge.) They also have a deliciously spicy and unfiltered house made ginger beer, which combines with Snap liquor very nicely. Unfortunately, we inhaled the food before I could take any photos.
After dinner, we went to Kink, which is an awesome newer sex-positive shop focusing on – you guessed it – kink. They were having a rope suspension demo that night, which was awesome to watch. We also got to chat with one of the owner’s friends, and I pointed her in the direction of the Tantus Splish after we bemoaned the dearth of interesting small dildos.
The following day, Caitlin and I met up for some thrifting and window shopping. I scored a soft, well-worn Philly roller derby t-shirt and a pair of Paper Denim & Cloth cut offs for $9 total, so you can start being jealous now if you weren’t already. For some refreshment, we had Thai Iced Coffee at Rocket Cat Cafe, which was super cozy, vegan-friendly, and out of my league with its cool factor.
Our last stops were to visit some of the local adult stores, as toy reviewers do. I don’t have any pictures of this part of the tour because that’s generally frowned upon for consumer privacy reasons. We ogled lingerie, squeezed dual-density dildos, and showed one of the shop managers the BS Is Nice toy we were carrying around with us. All in a day’s work.
At the end of the day on Saturday, we settled in at Casa de Sex-ational with some wine, cheese, and Tantus dildos. I brought the Raptor along to compare to her new Duke, and then we decided that we couldn’t let the moment go uncaptured.