So I'm on vacation in California and will later travel to the East Coast to see my people in DC, Philadelphia, and NYC.
The first destination on my whistle-stop tour of America's most unabashedly liberal locales was, appropriately, a weekend in Berkeley and San Francisco. I always go to whatever feminist sex toy store happens to be in the city I'm visiting so I can see what drool-inducing new toys are out there but also to just be around other sex positive people. In the Bay Area the big player is Good Vibrations, which has locations in Berkeley and San Francisco.
Good Vibes has a great online presence and even publishes its own web magazine that highlights, among other things, famous sex educators like yours truly. I usually visit the Mission store, because it's in the Mission and I like to go there--what could be better than sex toys and tacos, all in the same neighborhood? You'd think, living in Austin, Texas, I'd be able to have such an afternoon in my own town but, alas, I cannot.
I thought I'd share a couple of the totally awesome things I found at Good Vibes that I've never seen before and that I'm either lusting after or highly recommending. First up is the La Femme Harness, pictured above. The photo doesn't do it justice--the edges, ruffled leather, are highlighted by pink zippers. At $169, this is not a beginner's harness but for those experienced players interested in a femmey strap-on, this beauty is a must-have.
I also found the most adorable hand restraints ever, Bound Bliss, pictured at right. The part that goes around the wrists is leather and closes with a heart-shaped padlock, and the bow is real patent leather. Also available in red patent leather (!) these are a bargain at $65. Hint, hint.
Lelo's Ina, at left, was part of my gift guide but I actually got to feel it in my own hands at Good Vibes and I can confidently say that this thing is fucking awesome. If you have a Rabbit now, throw it in the garbage and get this younger, firmer, hotter model. Seriously. It's rechargeable, silicone, and I love that it doesn't have any annoying animal features. This is a grown up vibrator.
One thing Good Vibes does have that I don't see when I go to Babeland is an unparallelled selection of queer and genderfuck porn. They have the whole Crash Pad series, everything out there in TrannyFag world and and more (I know they have Buck Angel titles in the store, but I couldn't find any on the website). They offer Video on Demand, too, so you don't have to live in the Mission to get your fill. Fluid, at right, is one of Crash Pad veteran Madison Young's directorial flicks.
If you're in the Bay Area, I highly recommend a side trip to one of the Good Vibes locations. The stores are clean, welcoming to people of all genders, orientations, sizes, colors, what have you, and their selection of toys is top notch. They carry more "novelties" than I care for (really, must I be forced to browse butt plugs with college kids giggling over penis birthday candles?) but I confess to lusting after more than one three digit toy of the kind I just can't see up close and personal in Austin.
You can read my other gift recommendations here, at my Holiday Gift and Regift Guide.