What REALLY Happens At Sexpo!

I worked at Sexpo over the weekend supporting Oh Zone Adult Lifestyle Boutique Centres. I was quite excited to attend, and it was amazing fun working with colleagues and getting out there. I absolutely love events and festivals like this as it gives us an opportunity to promote a sex positive vibe to a lot of people that wouldn’t necessarily feel comfortable walking into an adult store. These festivals and events are also important in making people comfortable with sex and sexuality, and opening the way for people to think about their bedrooms and relationships.

However, one of the things that I repeatedly noticed about the event, was simply the lack of information on sex, sex toys and alternative lifestyles that many people had. Our stand focused on steel and kink toys and to be fair, kink and fetish adult toys are often misunderstood – but there were some things that were said that were so far off the mark that it was a wonder that they made it through the door! So if you came to visit us, or if you passed by the stand at Sexpo and were a little confused, I have written an article that kind of summarises some of the things that repeatedly came up over the weekend.

Chastity is not about trust

One of Oh Zone’s exclusive fetish brands is Hell’s Couture, and they have a large amount of chastity and chastity play gear. Having only recently becoming involved in chastity myself, I’m not only very excited to talk about chastity (that damn honeymoon stage), but I’m also quick to point out corrections that need to be made. Sure, we might joke that chastity is about trust, and that’s perfectly okay, and for some there are elements of trust involved. Chastity however, at its core, is about power and control. By locking up the very thing that makes a male a man, his dick, and then preventing him from using that when he wants you are essentially controlling his masculinity, agency and him. Think about it, ever since he discovered that he could tug himself off and achieve orgasm with relative ease, he’s been doing that. Now, you lock him up and tell him that he can’t, add to that the idea that he has to please you and he might get released… and you’ll quickly find it’s a fun power play. We have numerous articles on chastity throughout this website, including how to measure up for a cock ring correctly. correctly. So if you popped on by over the weekend and aren’t sure how to measure up, check out that article.

Don’t yuck someone’s yum

Hell’s Couture has about a thousand different items within the range, at Sexpo we couldn’t take the entire range so we took an assortment of interesting things designed to not only spark up a conversation, but also to educate. Several times over the course of the weekend, people would come on over to our stand, pick something up and be like ‘What the &^%$ is this?” After telling them, they’d drop it like a hot potato and run for the hills screaming bloody murder. I get it, there’s many things in this world that I have hard limits on, but I don’t begrudge other people their kinks. As I was telling a lovely couple over the weekend just starting to explore their fetish and kink desires – you do you. For example, bondage and restraints can mean so many different things to different people. That’s why there are so many different bondage roleplaying ideas. For the couple over in the corner – they might feel that silk restraints, and a lace blindfold is heavy bondage for them. For another couple, silk and lace is just way too soft for them, and they require leather pieces, a ball gag, and some heavy duty rope. They’re still doing the same activity, bondage and restraints, but they’re just engaging it in different ways and that’s perfectly okay – you do you.

Don’t yuck someone’s yum #2

In addition to this we took a variety of medical fetish toys including sounding gear and speculums. Sounding toys aren’t for everyone, for many men the idea of sliding a steel rod down their cock hole is just way too much for them. I’ve tried it. I didn’t find pleasure in it, but would I do it to someone else if they enjoyed it? Absolutely.

Many things in fetish and kink, and indeed the Hell’s Couture range is primarily mind over matter. Steel is aesthetically hard core. It instantly creates a specific mindset, and a particular state of being that is essential to getting into the right scene. Consider the idea of a woman walking into a room in wearing black and red latex gear carrying a whip. That image instantly creates a particular feeling and scene. Now, if she were to come in wearing a pink plaid skirt and a white school shirt, carrying school books then the scene is completely different. In one, she’s clearly being more dominant, and in the other the idea of the school girl as being less dominant.

Sounding is not about pain. Out of the three tables of stock, we only took one item that primarily centred on pain – that being Kali’s Teeth. Sounding toys and gear is about stimulating an area of the body that’s not normally stimulated. It’s described as a reverse ejaculation, that feeling you get as the fluid rushes through the urethra, and that’s pretty much it. You insert the rod, you slide it down, and you either have sex or jerk off with it. It’s not about control, it’s not about trust, and it’s certainly not about pain.

Nothing replaces the human touch

One of our pride and joys that we took to the Sexpo show was one of our sex machines. We had this thrusting away the entire weekend and it not only received many compliments, but it received a lot of photographs and comments. One of the comments that struck out often enough though was the one that simply said ‘Well, you wouldn’t need me then, would you?”. A seemingly innocuous comment but one that certainly needs to be addressed, as myself and colleagues have heard this many times when working in the stores as well. Many people view sex toys as replacements to a sexual partner. They’re not. Sex toys are (mostly) used with the idea to supplement a couple’s pleasure, and to ensure that everyone is having fun. The exception being sex robots which are a completely new category and which we’ll discuss elsewhere. Sex toys work with partners, not against partners. It’s simply about providing a different sense of stimulation. You are still in control of the sex toy, and it’s merely an extension of you and not a replacement.

Respect and inclusivity

One of the most amazing things I saw over the weekend was just how inclusive the event was. There were people in diverse relationships, and numerous people with physical disabilities. What was amazing was this visibility and the idea that everyone can have sex and pleasure. Many times we neglect these groups because we don’t understand them, or we dismiss them as being non-sexual as is the case of what many people do with people with disabilities. Everyone has a need for sex, pleasure and intimacy and it was a truly amazing experience seeing this reflected in the crowd.

Research

Education takes time – it’s really difficult to describe certain scenes, and BDSM toys in the space of 30 seconds, and that’s one of the most disappointing things about shows and festivals like this. You want to intimately describe some of the toys and items, but there’s simply not enough time. For this reason, it’s important, when it comes to kink and fetish, that you do your research. It’s also important to remember that no matter how much research that you do that it’s never going to be the equivalent of doing it. Like we mentioned earlier in this article, you do you and there are times when you may not even use a toy as it was intended, you might use it for completely different reasons which brings us to point 7. . .

Sex toy teamwork

Many of the toys that you may have seen on the kink and fetish table are not stand alone toys. Let’s take for example restraints. Cuffing someone to the bed can be hot. You can have your own way with them, they’re vulnerable and they’re helpless – which is part of the appeal. Now let’s add a blindfold to that. A blindfold is not as effective by itself, but when you team this up with the cuffs, all of a sudden you up the tempo. Not only are they cuffed, but they also can’t see either. Now let’s up the tempo even further with a pair of nipple clamps. Blindfolded, cuffed whilst the nipple are stimulated. You can even up the tempo even further with something like the Wartenberg wheel for some truly sensory fun! When it comes to kink and fetish toys – they work as a team rather than stand-alone items.

It’s clear that more education on sex, kink and fetish is needed. It’s a slow process. We’ve spent the past few decades learning that sex feels good and that we should be talking about not only our own pleasure, but our sexual partner’s pleasure as well. We are unpacking our learning of the idea that sex is for reproduction – and it’s a slow process. By putting sex and the idea of pleasure into the open, we are changing the way that people think and view sex and sexuality, one person at a time. If you had any questions about Oh Zone Adult Lifestyle Centres being at Sexpo, or had any further questions about the products that we had on display – please don’t hesitate to drop into one of stores at Penrith, Caringbah or Kogarah (Kogarah is wheelchair accessible), or drop us a line on our online store. We had a great time at Sexpo and we really hope that you learnt something, as well as had a blast!

Author: Stephen is a consultant from Oh Zone Adult Lifestyle Centres

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