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I have a confession. I have not read 50 Shades of Grey. Could I be the only woman of a certain age in the Western world who has not…?
The reason? One of the things I have learned over the last few years is that fantasy is very often not a patch on reality.
I have been asked to review a whole raft of books that contain short stories of sexual fantasy… and in most cases, the collections came up wanting.
There would be one or two entries that tickled my fancy and got my own imagination working but, mostly, they all fell short.
So, I was quite excited when I heard that my friend, Suzanne Portnoy, was re-releasing her own memoire ‘The Butcher, The Baker, The Candlestick Maker’.
I have to admit that I first read her book prior to making her acquaintance. It was in those days when I was still an unhappily married mother who did not know what to do with the emotions that were being raised by all the hormones raging inside her. I felt subsumed by the pressures of my life as a wife and mother. I had lost the real me somewhere and she was fighting to get out. Scrambling to find some joy. Searching for something crucial that was missing inside, which could only be reclaimed by climbing the peak to the next orgasm. A place that emotional disconnection meant my husband now singularly failed to help me reach.
It was a time of vibrators and aural sex – listening to the fantasies of my internet lover. And that’s the difference. His fantasies were all about me! His stories were fantasies that we hoped to make reality. Those in the books that I was later to read would never come to pass in my own world. They were far too far fetched.
The Butcher, The Baker was the memoire of a woman rather like me in circumstance. But one who had the courage to go out and make her fantasies real. Some of her adventures left me open mouthed at her audaciousness and sometimes terrified at her lack of concern for her own safety.
My own sexual exploration had allowed me to venture into a secret world of pain and pleasure but Suzanne took those themes onto a whole new level. I wanted to cover my eyes or hide behind the sofa as if I were still a child watching Doctor Who – but I still could not put the book down. This was sex for grown ups. And I wanted to learn all about it. From my provincial suburban bedroom, I was taken to a glittering London and its seamier underbelly. Outward respectability with less than salubrious sexual secrets hidden just beneath the surface – if you knew where to look.
Back in 2008, I wrote my own post about Narrow Minded Spouses based on an interview that Suzanne had done with another famous female blogger of the time – Ms R – sadly now no longer existant.
Reading the post again, I am reminded of how the interview made me get her books and the influence that her writing had upon my own attitudes, activities and experimentation. She made me realise that it’s ok to try things – whether that’s in the comfort and safety of a loving relationship or with a complete stranger. But that it’s also ok to say that you didn’t like something and don’t want to do it again or just don’t want to try something full stop.
And, even more importantly, that it’s vital to be true to the woman that you are and not be restricted by the limitations of a partner or the sphere in which you live.
I also enjoyed her follow up book, The Not So Invisible Woman – which is quite a timely reminder as I ponder upon the future with my own Mr Right.
If you have not read The Butcher, The Baker, The Candlestick Maker and you are in that dark place where the woman inside is quashed by the mundanities of the family around her, I would exhort you to buy this and plan your own escape.
So, here I am at the beginning of a new life, starting from scratch with all sorts of things to buy.
Obviously, I have to make the most important decision of my life about one of the basic staples of my life.
I don’t know about the broadband connection to the new flat so I’m going to have to rent some internet time until I can get it sorted.
I’m thinking Vodafone… but I’m also thinking of investing in a laptop.
Blinded by science at PC World, with hundreds of netbooks and laptops to bemuse me, I call upon my trusty readers to give me guidance.
It’s like that whole Betamax vs VHS dilemma all over again.
To stay with the Windows system, with which I am familiar or to pay the extra money and take advantage of improved reliability by getting a Mac?
I don’t play games… well, apart from Scrabble on Facebook… I want to be able to watch iplayer and c4 on demand. Obviously, I need to be able to access my blog and comment on other people’s. I send/receive less than 50 emails per day (if you don’t count all those notifications from Facebook and Blogger, if you do, then it will be somewhat more). I upload photos from my phone now and again and fiddle around with them a bit in photobucket for HNTs and download about ten images per week for Mute Monday. I’d quite like to have the facility to watch dvds but it’s not the end of the world if I don’t. If I didn’t get a stand-alone PC, then I would need to be able to write letters now and again (usually I use Word).
From my status question on Facebook, I suspect that I am about to open up a whole can of worms because so many people have such strong opinions, but tell me what your experience is telling you…?
Another one from iVillage that spurred me to write – the 10 worst female health habits.
Wearing high heels and carrying heavy bags can cause all sorts of postural problems that make a body ugly.
Sleeping in makeup is just horrible. It leaves unsightly marks on the bedclothes and also turns you into a Panda overnight. What was sexy, now just looks cheap.
Wearing the wrong bra size means that your boobs go unsupported. This may be ok short term but, in the long run, you will bitterly regret it as you suffer postural problems and back ache before noticing that your nipples are level with your belly button! It can also be a reason for a nasty wrinkle in your sweater where it’s digging into your flesh.
Stressing gives you wrinkles and an unhappy outlook on life – it’s not nice being with someone who is worried all the time. And it’s catching!
Emotional eating also has repercussions for your health and appearance.
Ditto keeping up with the boys in drinking – usually it’s about insecurity and wanting to be accepted. But the side effects also show themselves in health and appearance.
The final habit is that of putting yourself last. Sometimes there is just not enough time or energy to look after yourself when you have seen to partner, offspring, parents, job, home, garden… We spread ourselves to thin and then we pay the price.
I remember my first sight of Kate Bush in a video on Top of the Pops when she had just got to Number One with ‘Wuthering Heights’.
This strange, huge-eyed waif-like creature, all pointy fingers, floaty frock and surrounded in a cloud of dark curly hair. Pulling her body into all sorts of strange shapes and contortions which were totally at odds with her glam/rock/disco/punk contemporaries. And all the while warbling and yodelling about Heathcliff and Kathy. It was something totally different to anything I had ever seen before and the song was sooooo catchy.
Pamela Stephenson did this fantastic spoof of that performance in a sketch on Not the Nine O’Clock News.
Kate was one of those elusive stars who never quite fitted into any definite musical category but she captured my imagination and her singles were never a disappointment. Babooshka, The Man with the Child in his Eyes, Running up that Hill, Cloudbusters and Dont Give Up, which she did with Peter Gabriel. Soulful, plaintive earworms with an amazing depth of feeling in the story behind them.
But, in recent years, it is this one which has remained with me. It was the theme tune to one of those ITV emotional dramas a couple of years back and summed up the state of my marriage post-children pretty succinctly. Almost succeeded in encapsulating the immense regret and deep sadness that I could no longer do or be what he needed, give what he wanted with nothing in return.
Pray God you can cope. I stand outside this woman’s work, This woman’s world. Ooh, it’s hard on the man, Now his part is over. Now starts the craft of the father.
I know you have a little life in you yet. I know you have a lot of strength left. I know you have a little life in you yet. I know you have a lot of strength left.
I should be crying, but I just can’t let it show. I should be hoping, but I can’t stop thinking
Of all the things I should’ve said, That I never said. All the things we should’ve done, Though we never did. All the things I should’ve given, But I didn’t.
Oh, darling, make it go, Make it go away.
Give me these moments back. Give them back to me. Give me that little kiss. Give me your hand.
(I know you have a little life in you yet. I know you have a lot of strength left. I know you have a little life in you yet. I know you have a lot of strength left.)
I should be crying, but I just can’t let it show. I should be hoping, but I can’t stop thinking
Of all the things we should’ve said, That we never said. All the things we should’ve done, Though we never did. All the things that you needed from me. All the things that you wanted for me. All the things that I should’ve given, But I didn’t.
Oh, darling, make it go away. Just make it go away now.
Opening the box, my first thought that it was a little smaller than I had anticipated from the original image. But I guess this could also be because previous experience has been with Rabbits. Sometimes you don’t actually need a sledgehammer to crack a nut.
Closer inspection made me realise that this is a very beautifully designed device and a lot of thought has gone into making sure that it gives optimum pleasure.
I had been given a choice of devices and actually gone with the cheaper of the two on offer – it was minus the Rampant Rabbit ears that I so detest. But still on the luxury side at close to £90.
Cleaning and Recharging the Silver Swan
It’s nicely packaged and comes with a selection of recharging devices to suit users with different electricity requirements from all over the world. There is also a nice bag to protect and store the Swan after use.
Make sure you clean your vibe before and after use with a mild soap and water solution. Once it’s dry you can charge it up. The recharger fits neatly into a tiny covered hole the bottom of the device which is otherwise a seamless silicone confection – making it both fully waterproof and easy to keep germ-free. Plug it in and a red light will appear to indicate charging. When this has disappeared, you are ready to rock.
Design and Operation
The Silver Swan has two protuberances. One is to go inside you and the other to fit neatly against or between your labia. The handle itself really does fit the palm of your hand, making it very easy to operate the two push button controls. The upper one is responsible for the gspot and the lower for the clitoral stimulation.
The way it works is that you press and hold a button for a couple of seconds and feel the power increase in that part of the Swan. The moment you stop pressing, it will keep the vibration at that strength until you press and hold the button again to take it up some more. To switch off that section of the device, you depress the button and then remove the pressure.
It’s been a while since I’ve done a review on a new toy and a long time since I’ve done one with Ruf lying in bed beside me. I have to say that he seemed more interested in catching up on his Facebook newsfeed on his phone than on what was going on beside him – ah, how the times have changed!
So, I used a water-based lube – very important when you’re working with silicone equipment as a silicone lube can scratch the delicate membrane of the device – and covered the two working parts carefully.
Silver Swan In Action
I am still having problems with ‘entry’ so it takes me a while to get ready, but placing the longer length against the required hole, I depressed the button and switched it on. The whirring against my nether regions was very pleasant and, pushing gently, it slowly began to slip inside. After a few minutes, it was sufficiently ensconced for the the shorter length to reach its fleshly goal too.
The effect of the two of them buzzing away started to make changes to my breathing. Suddenly Ruf began to notice what was occurring right beside him and he put aside his mobile to take an interest.
The great thing about this device is that you can increase the power to either vibrating section very easily by just pressing and holding the right button. The shape of the shorter length is cleverly designed so that there is a pulse which oscillates so that you get a slight ‘dink’ of pressure to the left and then to the right of your clitoris. This definitely works for me. And so much more comfortable than the horrible sharp ‘rabbit ears’ design which is so common.
The internal g spot stimulator is a bulbous shape which gets to the right parts and the combination of the two different vibrations quickly succeeded in taking me to a gentle orgasm. I could imagine lying like that for quite some time and just enjoying the effects.
At one point, I turned it off. Ruf wanted to know why. Yoga has taught me that the only way you can really appreciate the full effects of stimulation is to stop still for a moment and just feel. The absence of the vibrations allows you to really sink into aftermath and enjoy. And those after shocks were intense.
A few minutes later, I switched back on and took myself back up to the peak again very quickly.
The only potential downside? Well, for me, one of my favourite parts is at the beginning. The delicate nerve endings at the vaginal opening are extremely sensitive. And the feeling as the entrance is filled – in combination with clitoral stimulation… And then the girth as a penis slides inside me, filling me completely. Maintaining pressure at the beginning and then probing the inner reaches.
The design of the Silver Swan means that the internal section is bulbous to allow it to hit the gspot further up. So you get the full sensation upon entry but, because the stem becomes quite narrow as it moves down towards the join with the clitoral stimulator, there is a little something missing in the overall execution.
However, in the grand scheme of things, this is a minor irritation. And, when you can use the device to prepare you for full entry of the man in your life, it does not really signify.
Curious how the male instincts can pick up the signals of an imminent orgasm. Fortunately for me, Albert doesn’t have much time for Facebook. Realising there was the chance for activity, he quickly dragged his master away from such minor distractions.
On a relaxed Bank Holiday weekend with nothing to do but lie in bed with Ruf and work on our relationship, the Silver Swan was extremely good company. But it would have worked just as well had I been home alone.
Beautifully made, easy to use and very effective.
Definitely a keeper!
If you’re looking for a vibrator that is pleasing to the eye and the touch and which will last you for a good while, I would take a look at the Silver Swan.
It comes with the traditional one year manufacturer’s guarantee but, they are so convinced of the quality of their product, this can be increased to ten years if you register it at the Swan website within one year of purchase. This means that, if something should go wrong after the first year and before the tenth year, you can get 50% off a new model on a one time only basis.
Yes, even Blog Sex Goddesses have to wash their smalls.
I was telling her that in my new flat, the laundry arrangements were ‘like they are in American apartments with a communal laundry area’.
Lilly was a little confused because, apparently, life in the US is not always like ‘Friends’ and some of you do actually own your own washing machines and tumble dryers because using the basement facilities tends to end up with your thongs ending up in the pockets of the block’s pervie pilferer.
It rather spoiled my own particular fantasy of months of flirtatious gossip and long smouldering looks culminating in my being pushed face down over the washing machine and fucked by the best looking guy in the building to the accompaniment of a ‘fast spin’.
Have I been living in cloud cuckoo land?
Tell me your laundry stories – just this once, it’s ok to wash your dirty linen in public.
After showering me, he led me into the bedroom and removed the towel. He was laughing because there, on the bed where I had placed them earlier, was the tape and some toys. All our regular ones had been left at his place but these are two that I keep in my travel bag – just in case. A mini wand clit stimulator and a slim vibrator. I’m pretty sure both of them came as freebies or special offers when I’ve bought stuff from LoveHoney. But the piece de resistance was the tape.
We’d wanted to try some ‘proper’ bondage for a while. Normally we improvise and use cotton belts but these have a tendency to be uncomfortably tight or to come undone so they are not totally reliable. A friend had waxed lyrical about the joys of bondage tape but, on checking, the stuff he had recommended contained latex. In fact, everywhere I tried, all the brands seemed to have it… until now. LoveHoney stock this as ‘lightweight bondage ribbon‘ and list it as latex-free so I thought we should give it a go.
It seemed a bit too clinical to go straight from the loved-up passion in the shower to the mindset needed for bondage so we started by playing with the toys… well I did, whilst Ruf looked on. Freed from the restriction of worrying about alerting the other houseguests to our activities, I was in my element. Effusive in expressing my enjoyment.
It never normally takes long before he wants to join in and we indulged ourselves with a little doggy, accompanied by a side serving of clit vibration. This, on top of the remnants of arousal from the shower episode, continued the process of stimulation. We have discovered that my orgasms are like tides where, with each ebb and flow, the height of the next exceeds the last… culminating in the massive spring flood. My excited squeals were signalling the first rumblings of a seismic shift that would rock me at the denouement.
As we lay there, snuggling for a moment of refraction, I just drank him in. I love being in this position, tucked under his arm with my head on his shoulder and my hand stroking his chin and his chest – my Sanctuary. It has the most calming effect on me.
It makes me realise how lucky I am to have found him. Tess did a post about gspots recently and said that she would far rather have a man who could find her soul. But what I have found with Ruf is a someone who can do both. A man who makes me feel so beautiful and special that I walk around like the Ready Brek kid with a glowing external aura.
Lying there, thinking about how relaxed I feel with him, about how turned on I was earlier in the shower, I just felt this huge surge of emotion rising up inside me and overwhelming me.
And then he started to whisper. Telling me about what was going to happen next. How he was going to use the bondage tape to restrain me and have his way with me. Reminding me how totally helpless I was going to be… Completely at his mercy and unable to stop him. Ruf at his most dominant.
Lifting myself onto my elbow, he could see the uncontrollable desire in my eyes and our lips met as our bodies intertwined. Two lusts joining and overlapping and consuming us as he pushed me back and grabbed hold of my wrists. Yanking at the tape, he secured my forearms together, just below the elbow and then did the same with my wrists.
At first I thought it wasn’t going to work. The tape was like a ribbon, soft and fragile. But I was so wrong. As soon as it was wound around so that two pieces touched each other, it adhered and stuck firm to itself… but not to my skin. I tried to pull my arms apart but I was, as he had predicted, powerless to protect myself. He sat between my legs and lifted one onto his shoulder, resting the ankle there as he dragged my arms up and secured my wrists to the lower part of my leg. Trussed like a chicken and, revelling in my impotence, he took full advantage.
Applying his fingers to my clit, as I bucked and wriggled beneath his attentions, before pressing home his advantage in no uncertain terms as the pressure recommenced its ascent inside me.
Taking me to a point where I was begging for my tulip.
‘Can you hold it?’ he queried as he placed the stem between my restrained but supplicant palms and watched me bend my leg to apply the buzzing bulb to the specific part. He laughed as the orgasm hit almost immediately. Waiting for the onset of the next, he pulled me towards him and rested my foot on his chest, lifting my pelvis off the bed so that my weight was on my shoulders and upper back. My other leg naturally hooked itself around his hip to give him just the right angle to slide himself in at the optimum moment and start to pump. This is one of my favourite positions for a really strong climax, especially when I’ve already had several… and it didn’t fail me on this occasion.
With no one within earshot to hear my noisy exclamations, I could just let rip and scream as the tension accumulated and compounded to a crescendo of explosive release, leaving me gasping and shaking. And, this being Ruf, he wasn’t happy to just finish it there so he continued his rhythmic hip jerks in and out as the tulip continued to wreak havoc with the nerves leading from my groin to my brain, agitating and impatient, pushing out a second and then a third shrieking eruption.
As soon as my brain showed any semblance of regaining its natural equilibrium, he pushed me over onto my fastened knee, insisting that I maintain the pressure of the tulip, despite my pleas that I couldn’t turn. He manhandled my body into the position he had envisaged, with one knee up and the other leg long before penetrating me again and riding another wave of shrill approval.
There was no time for my mental state to recover itself before he made use of the final toy. The small vibrating dildo was inserted. First into the sodden gash of my cunt and pressing back against the opposing force of the tulip. Squeezing my gspot in some devilish sandwich of delight until he received his squelchy and vociferous reward.
I didn’t even have to tell him where I wanted it next, although he made me plead for it just the same as he teased at the little round rosebud. And then it was inside, the sensory pleasure pushing the pressure higher and higher, until I thought my head would burst open, despite the screams venting the energy from my mouth.
Before long, he was unable to resist the urge to be inside me too. The muscles there had tightened to such a degree that he could hardly make any inward progress. So slipping in and out at the entrance, enjoying the stereo vibrations from the two little helpers on either side, he waited for the moment of release when the screams reached their zenith and subsided; when my rigid musculature relaxed sufficiently for him to push forward and take me back up to the summit again. My body clenching around him, effectively pinning him inside me before forcibly ejecting him and blocking his attempts to regain entry.
Wave upon cataclysmic wave building to a tsunami as my fingers gripped the bedding convulsively, knuckles white with the restrained energy fighting to extricate itself as I yelled and shrieked to liberate the pent-up storm whirling around my body.
And then there was silence.
This amazing sense of complete calm. Total relaxation after discharging all the furious tension that had built up inside me. I don’t know how much time passed before I watched him as he gently released me from the tape bindings and noted that there had been no form of reaction against my skin. I lay completely still and emotionless as he tidied up the bed, focussing only on the activity that occurred immediately within my field of vision.
I remember that he asked several times if I was alright but I was incapable of responding. I’m not really sure that I knew the answer.
Everything was in slow motion and accompanied by a soft buzzing in my ears. Like watching a scene through a lens smeared with vaseline, all sort of smudged around the edges. There were half-formed sentences in my mind that my mouth could not begin to utter without the connection. Nothing seemed to matter. Catatonic. Drugged by the excesses of our passion.
Someone later likened it to a mini-stroke but I’m glad I didn’t think that then. I just let it have me – totally numb, yet engulfed in this curiously warm glow of satisfaction. As I drifted off, I was aware of him wrapping himself around me and pulling me close. Tucking the quilt in beneath me. Safe and warm, he held me tightly as I slept, exhausted by our endeavours.
What’s not to like about this post by iVillage which gives enough tips on how to have better sex for you to try them once a week for the next year!
The first one is a personal favourite – the anticipation of that moment of initial entry can get me worked into a right lather. I have often used the memory of that particular sensation when I masturbatated in Ruf’s absence with one of my favourite vibrators – the Vibratex Magic Wand and the Lelo Mia.
I would definitely advocate the activity of placing a pillow under your bottom for the optimum 26-degree pelvic tilt to achieve maximum contact between his body and your clitoris resulting in an orgasm every time. Also, putting your leg(s) on his shoulder(s) – that makes him feel much bigger inside you.
Having Ruf living with me means that we spend a lot of time in each other’s company but I am so glad that he has not stopped talking dirty to me – I just wish he would not do it in the bathroom which is right next door to my neighbour’s bedroom. I’m not sure he wants to know quite that amount of information about me!
To be honest, red underwear has never really cut it for either of us but hold up stockings in any colour will always produce the desired effect.
Again, playing with food a la 9 and a half weeks has not really cut the mustard. We both prefer to enjoy eating a proper meal together with entertaining conversation.
Alcohol does its part in reducing the stress levels to allow my body to listen to her inner Joanna Cake and get her rocks off with Ruf.
But I think the best tip there is to enjoy yourself.
There is nothing more sexy than a partner who is really into you and thoroughly enjoying making love.
Welcome to Pleasurists, a round-up of the adult product and sex toy reviews that came out in the last seven days. If you like what you see and want more of it be sure to follow our RSS Feed and Twitter.
I lusted after Mia back in the pink/dark pink days when it was buzzy, weak, and emitted a rather high-pitched whine. It was because of the large number of disappointed reviews that I held off. Recently, though, Lelo did something I always applaud companies for and listened to their customers…
Editor’s Note: Okay, I know you’ve probably read a Mia review before, I’ve probably had one as an EP before too, but the reason I choose reviews has little to do with the toy, it has to do with the review, and this one is actually enjoyable to read, which is my main criteria.
Recently I was asked to write a review post on one of my other sites. I was a bit confused as the site is about male genital health and the request was for a link to a site about breast forms. These were boobies or fake breasts for men.
It got me to thinking about who would want such things? Well transgender individuals, cross dressers or those who would like some boobies of their own to caress. I wrote a bit about men and breasts a few weeks ago.
Ruf loves mine and often says that he doesn’t know how I get anything done when I have them right under my nose, continually inviting investigation.
Curiously, I don’t quite view them in such a way but I can see that they are an interesting plaything that some males of my acquaintance might like to try out for themselves.
Fake Breasts For Men
Looking at the website, it became apparent that this is big business. There were fake breasts for men that ran the whole gamut of sizes – from Dolly Parton mahoosive down to a regular B cup. And the great thing about them was that they didn’t require a specialist bra to hold them in place. A regular brassiere for the required cup size was sufficient.
Made of high quality silicone and in a realistic nude colour, you could also get them so that they looked completely symmetrical – like a fake boob job – or asymmetrical so that they looked more natural. Ruf was quite amused by the idea of having one large one and one small one – but further examination of the site seemed to suggest that you purchased them in pairs, rather than selecting different sizes.
You could even buy more realistic nipples than the ones that came with the breast forms – to make them look perfect and perky giving the required colour and shape of arousal against a blouse.
Unlike the rigidity of a silicone boob job a la Bay Watch where the fake bosoms hardly seemed to move as the ladies ran in their revealing red cossies, these fake breasts for men have a natural ‘droop- – not a good advertising word – built in.
To get them to fit properly, they have a slightly concave back which fits into the natural contours of the existing chest tissue. They are then held in place with medical adhesive stripsbut you need to ensure
that the tapered end points towards the underarm so that they are the right way up.
Fascinating stuff and I would love to hear from anyone who has used these as to what they feel like to wear – do they alter your centre of gravity when you move? Do they feel like real breasts in terms of external texture and bulk?
The best of this week’s blogs by the bloggers who blog them. Highlighting the top 3 posts as chosen by Sugasm participants. Want in Sugasm #122? Submit a link to your best post of the week using this form. Participants, repost the link list within a week and you’re all set.