Sexual Wellness Resource Center
For Adults over 50.

Sex Toys for Older Adults: Buying Your First One

By Michael Bates, M.D.

Sex toys are great for seniors! Sexual activity, solo or partnered, is good for your health with aging. Orgasms are amazingly effective for reducing anxiety and depression and increasing your sense of wellbeing.

However, orgasms are harder for women to reach after menopause because there is less pelvic blood flow and less sensitivity. They need prolonged manual stimulation, yet arthritic fingers and wrists may tire. Men over 50 often need more tactile stimulation for erections, but again, arthritic hands may tire. Sex toys can help.

More and more seniors are discovering the benefits of sex toys, yet some are unsure about buying their first one. If that’s you, this article will help.

So what IS the obstacle to buying that first sex toy?

  • Some people worry that sex toys are unnatural or taboo—something reserved for dark sex shops and pornographic movies. Hearing aids and heart pacemakers are also unnatural, but they increase the quality of life. Think of sex toys as increasing the quality of your sex life!

    So many sex shops today are welcoming and bright, with trained staff ready to help. You can also buy online if you’re more comfortable shopping from home.

  • Other people fear that they will buy the wrong sex toy because of lack of knowledge. It helps to start off with something small, basic, no bells and whistles...and always made with safe materials and quality construction. Don’t be afraid to ask questions, whether it’s from store staff or using an online help feature, like our Ask the Experts feature.

    Also realize that if a sex toy doesn’t “do it for you” the way you’d hoped, that doesn’t mean you made a mistake. It’s a normal and educational step in learning what you want (and don’t want).

Whether you buy a sex toy in our online store or a brick-and-mortar shop, be prepared to have some fun with it. You might share the experience with your partner or shop with a friend. Laugh and enjoy! You won’t believe the number and names of some of the products!

Let go of any guilt, shame or embarrassment. That first sex toy is all about fun and pleasure. You can find sexy clothes, shoes, games, videos and all kinds of sexual products.

Relax, don’t judge yourself, there is absolutely no reason to be ashamed.

Let’s go shopping! Ladies first...

Every woman should have a reliable, high-quality vibrator that meets her needs. The main challenge in purchasing one is the huge variety and number of vibrators on the market. The selection can be overwhelming. Who would have thought there were so many shapes, sizes, power options, and more?

Once again, think small, basic, no bells and whistles, made with body-safe materials and quality construction. Start with a small clitoral vibrator—most women are more likely to orgasm from clitoral stimulation than vaginal. Penetrating toys can come later.

Here are a few good options for a first vibrator:

  • The Tenga Iroha Sakura vibrator is a perfect first vibrator. It’s soft, small and light, and easy to use with only two buttons. The Sakura has a deep strength and offers subtle to strong vibrations so you can experiment with what you like.
  • The Palm Power is a longtime favorite. It’s a stronger vibrator, yet small, light, and well designed. One-touch speed control makes it simple for beginners to use. Another nice feature is the optional attachment heads, which allow you to get different sensations without buying a separate vibrator.
  • Another good starter sex toy is the Sensuelle Point clitoral stimulator. This type of vibrator may also be called a bullet. It is designed to provide targeted and intense stimulation.
  • LELO Mia
  • LELO Ora

Tenga Ihora Sakura Vibrator in PinkPalm Power rechargeable vibratorSensuelle Point bullet vibrator in pink

Now let’s look at some sex toys for men...

Men, let’s talk about a few products that help with erectile dysfunction.

Erections require more stimulation with age. Products called penis stimulators, or masturbation sleeves, enhance arousal for solo or partnered sex.

  • If you can get a partial erection with manual stimulation, the Tenga Egg will help you get to a full one. It is affordable, reliable and easy to use solo or with your partner’s help.
  • The advantage of the rechargeable Pulse, is that you can start with a flaccid penis. This device oscillates, stimulating the underside of the head of the penis as well as the shaft, converting that flaccid penis into an erect one.

For some men, achieving an erection is not the problem, but maintaining one for penetration is. In that case, C-rings are the answer. These are also called cock rings, penis rings, and erection rings. They are useful for masturbation and intercourse.

C-rings are placed around the base of the penis or around the base of the penis and the testicles. With stimulation, blood flows into the penis with enough force to establish an erection. The ring stops the outflow of blood, which is the culprit in being unable to maintain an erection. Be prepared for some crazy product names when shopping for c-rings!

  • For the beginner, a soft and stretchy ring is the way to go, such as the Screaming O RingO Cock Ring. Beginners can also train their way to better erections using graduated sets of three for versatility while learning. The Sex & Mischief Cock Ring 3 Pack Set is an example.
  • Vibrating C-rings are also available and are designed to give your partner clitoral stimulation while maintaining your erection. A good choice is the rechargeable Je Joue Mio Cockring. It’s flexible, quiet and comfortable, with five easily adjustable vibration settings.

Je Joue Mio vibrating cockring in black

Finally, what about sex toys for couples?

When you are starting out, a small external sex toy for clitoral stimulation will be very useful in helping you both figure out what kind of vibes suit you best. It can instantly add some extra spice to foreplay and lovemaking! Check out the following:

  • The LELO Lily is a luxury vibrator that’s smooth and ergonomically designed, so it can fit in your palm or be nestled between you. It offers a range of stimulation modes to fit your needs but is simple and intuitive to use.
  • If you are a little more adventuresome, try the rechargeable We-Vibe vibrator. It is worn by the female partner for clitoral and anterior vaginal wall stimulation. Its slim size and form allow for normal penetration which then also provides vibrating sensations to the penis. Some call it the best couples vibrator ever!

LELO Lily vibrator in purple

What’s the take home message? Let go and get over your insecurities and fears. You might want to include your partner—make it a date, relax, have fun, and laugh! The best sex you have ever had could be waiting for you.

About the Author

Michael Bates, M.D.

Dr Bates practiced obstetrics and gynecology for 34 years in Wichita, Kansas, until his retirement in 2011.

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