Ever since Charlotte from Sex and the City got hooked on a vibrator known as The Rabbit, similar toys have been creating a buzz for women all over the world. While Charlotte went solo with her toy, more women are introducing them to their husbands for their shared pleasure.

Most electronic toys work on the concept of good vibrations. “For women who find it difficult to climax when her partner finishes first, the vibrator becomes useful for continuing stimulation,” says psychiatrist Dr Calvin Fones who specialises in helping couples deal with sexual issues.

Experts share how Singapore women can use vibrators in the bedroom,
without deflating their partners’ egos. Image: Corbis

Your husband doesn’t have to be left out either. “Men get aroused by the vibrations too, although not as much as women,” says Francis, co-founder of Alice Maple, an online sex store. Sex toys have come a long way from life-like phalluses; vibrators now come in all shapes and sizes.

If you’re worried about getting addicted to vibrators, put those fears to rest. Experts say that addiction is unlikely: “Even if a woman finds that she can only enjoy sex with her husband when sex toys are involved, it’s more likely a symptom of other problems they have in their marriage,” says Dr Fones. “Toys are great for creating the right atmosphere and adding more pleasure but it will never replace the real deal,” adds Francis.

So if sex with your hubby is beginning to fizzle more than sizzle, spice things up with him by introducing an electronic third party into your bedroom. Here’s how to do this without deflating his ego (and other bits):

Bring up the subject subtly, by saying something like, “Hey, do you think it will be fun if we gave (name of toy) a try?” Some men may be pleasantly surprised that their wives would be interested in using couple toys. “In general, men, more than women, are more stimulated by the novelty aspect of sex,” says Dr Fones.

Find a romantic or significant occasion as an excuse to introduce toys into the bedroom. Says Francis: “Always start with something small and simple like the Gino or the Fonzie, which are soft, squishy medium-sized vibrators. We don’t recommend beginners inserting any vibrators that are wider than 3.5cm.”

Constantly remind your husband that while the toy may be a great tool for enhancing sexual pleasure, it will never replace the emotional security and intimacy that you get from being with him. “Look at it this way: Sex toys are like dining out in a restaurant,” says Dr Fones. “It’s something fun and can be a novel experience, but it’s not as if you’ll do away with eating at home altogether.”

Talking about the experience post-sex can be a great way to establish a closer, more intimate relationship. Men also get much satisfaction knowing that their partners have been pleasured well – regardless of the method used, says Francis. If your partner needs a little coaxing, take him sex toy shopping, or browse the online shops and select a toy together.

While you may be keen to up your sex life by several notches with sex toys, it may not be a good idea if your husband is insecure in areas of lovemaking. “Some men may feel inadequate competing with an object that seems to do the job better and more efficiently than him,” Dr Fones explains. If your husband still feels uncomfortable with the idea, Dr Fones’ advice is to not pursue the matter. “There should be mutual respect in any relationship. Everyone is entitled to his or her own preferences and prejudices.”

Sex toys are meant to be fun and to add a playful new dimension to your sex life. Our experts tell you how to use them correctly:


  • Set boundaries beforehand: Have a talk with your husband and agree on what’s acceptable.
  • Use lubricant. Apply waterbased lubricant before and during play to prevent abrasion. Silicone-based lubricants will destroy toys made from silicone. Oil-based or petroleum jelly lubricants trap bacteria and are difficult to wash off.
  • Take it slow and easy. When using a vibrator for the first time, always set the vibration to the lowest level. If inserting, do this gently. Stop if you experience discomfort or pain.


  • Go for the big brands. While allergies and adverse reactions are rare, do your research and stick to reputable brands. Beware of poorly-made toys masquerading as the real deal.
  • Inspect toys before each use. Look out for sharp, broken or rough edges, which could cause injury if inserted.
  • Use a condom. Slipping on a condom over your toys before insertion makes playtime safer and cleaning-up easier.


  • Disinfect: To prevent infection, never insert your toys into your vagina without first disinfecting them.
  • Clean toys before using them and immediately after every use. Follow manufacturer’s instructions for cleaning. Never submerge electrical components in water. Store toys in a pouch or container in a cool, dry place.
  • Remove batteries after use, to prevent the battery from leaking.


  • Alice Maple sells a variety of dildos, vibrators, massage oils and erotic jewellery. No minimum order is required for free same-day courier delivery.
  • ILoveU sells condoms, lubricants, beginner toys and books/DVDs on sexual intimacy. Items are sent out by normal mail within 24 hours of payment.
  • U4Ria offers a wide variety of products from regular sex toys to bondage kits and virility creams. Free delivery for orders above $100.
  • Shop Intimates carries more than 1,200 products from the US, from lingerie to accessories for role-play. Order before 1pm for free delivery that evening.

Dr Calvin Fones is a consultant psychiatrist at Gleneagles Medical Centre. His private practice is located at the Fones Clinic – Psychological Medicine, 6 Napier Road, #04-11, Gleneagles Medical Centre, (S) 258499; Tel: 6472 8924, email: fones@psychiatrist.sg.

This article was originally published in SimplyHer February 2011.