Sex toy guide for beginners: From bullets to rabbits, here’s everything you need to know before you buy


If you’ve never bought a sex toy before then it’s easy to feel intimidated by the whole process.

While you thankfully no longer have to go into a shop marked “XXX”, ordering online can be a bit overwhelming, with websites filled with brightly coloured phalluses, and prices varying from £5 to £5,000.

In order to make sure that you buy the right toy for you, we’ve put together a comprehensive toy shopping guide.

Everything electronic we recommend comes with a gentle setting to start you off, and will be delivered in a discrete parcel that your postman won’t give a second look.

You can trust our independent reviews. We may earn commission from some of the retailers, but we never allow this to influence selections, which are formed from real-world testing and expert advice. This revenue helps us to fund journalism across The Independent.

Sex toys for women

Women’s sex toys fall into four general categories: bullet vibrators, sonic massagers, rabbits and non-electronic toys.

Bullet vibrators are the jeans and a white T-shirt of the sex toy world, a timeless and classic basic.

Our favourite is the We Vibe Tango (£59.99, Harmony), but if you’re starting out with sex toys and not looking to spend so much, the Rocks Off bullet (£11.99, Rocks Off), is a great place to start, with a fuller more rolling vibration, unlike the thinner and sharper sensations that some cheaper toys produce.

Sonic massagers are most suitable for solo masturbation, though in some positions would work for partnered sex. They’re a great choice for anyone who has used the same basic toy for a while and wants something a bit more exciting to change up their masturbation routine.

If you’re up for investing in something expensive, then you can’t go wrong with the Lelo sona (£119, Feel Unique). At the other end of the pricing spectrum is the Satisfyer pro 2 (£26.28, Amazon), which is just as good in terms of sensation, though not quite so sleek in design.