Love that body

New Year, New You!

Get started on your beach body!

Eat clean!

 .....

Oh dear.

Every body is a beach body. Take your body to the beach. Beaches are fun.

Food is food. Some food is more useful nutritionally. Some food is more useful as a tasty treat. The only way food is dirty is if you dropped it in the dirt. And frankly, that’s probably fine too.

This time of year can be tough. The tv commercials and news shows tell us to start the new year by losing weight, the magazines headlines in the check out line yell out new diets, fashion and wellness blogs promote the exercises guarateed to make sure we lose those "last ten pounds".

The message is clear. Our bodies are wrong. We aren’t enough in our present state.

Those messages, that our bodies are wrong, that if we were just shaped a little differently we’d be sexier, interfere with our ability to thoroughly enjoy our sexuality and our sexual experiences.

So this year, lets try something different.

Love the body that you’re in. Just the way it is.

Come to believe that your body is perfect exactly as it is. You are enough. Just as you are.

Start by telling your body how awesome it is. How? Try some of these practices

  • In the morning when you get out of the shower, rub your hands up and down your body and tell it “thank you” for getting you through the previous day.
  • Try some affirmations such as, “ I love my body, I’m grateful for my body”
  • Invest in some clothes that fit and make you feel good.
  • Give your body the gift of intentional movement. Move your body around the block, go dancing, take a class at a body positive gym.
  • Get a massage
  • Take a bath with delicious bath oils (you can even make your own)
  • Masturbate

If you feel some shame or “not good enough” creep in, acknowledge it. It’s ok. It happens. There are entire industries built on making that happen. Look it in the eye and then let it go.

The more we live inside our bodies, the more we love and accept them for being just right, the more fun we have when we’re enjoying sexy times. And sex is fun. Get deep inside your body and love it.

Your body is a site of joy. It is perfectly imperfect. You are delightfully, deliciously, abundantly enough.

Photo via ColorStock

 

Toys for the Holidays!

It’s the time of year for favorite things lists. And we’re here for you with ours! We surveyed our staff and came up with these. They’re all great gift ideas – whether you’re looking for a gift for yourself, or for someone else, you’ll bring a little extra joy to the holidays!

Crave Duet

$149

The Duet is a beautiful vibrator. It’s sleek, perfect for travel and the vibrations? They’re strong! The Duet is perfect for anyone who’s looking for a vibe that melds form with function seamlessly. Have you ever lost the charger for your favorite rechargeable vibe? That won’t happen. The Duet hides a USB charger.

Pure Wand 

$108

The Pure wand is simply the best g-spotting toy ever made. And, it’s great for prostates too!

The Pure Wand has the perfect curve, and just the right weight to provide the stimulation that g-spots love. Made of surgical steel, the Pure Wand will last forever and never needs batteries!

Massage Candle

$18

Massage candles from Seagrape are 100% natural, preservative free and smell delightful. They melt and turn into warm massage oil. The perfect way to warm up when things turn chilly outside!

Satisfyer

$80

Earlier this year, a toy came on the market that used air to provide clitoral sensation. And it’s fine. Then this toy came out. We were suspicious. It’s a great price for a rechargeable toy. It’s waterproof. And it uses air. So, we tried it. And holy hell, is this thing good. It’s strong, The sensation is different. It’s easy to use with a partner. If you’re looking for something new, you should check this out!

Blewit

$80

You know we’re big supporters of masturbation here at Sugar. People with clitorises get vibrators. People with penises get some vibrators (especially the Pulse) and they get masturbation sleeves. Every year or so a new sleeve comes on the market that really elevates the game. This year, it’s the Blewit. The Blewit is sleek. It’s easy to hold. It’s easy to clean. It’s easy to add or take away suction. It’s our tester’s favorite.

Crave Bullet

$60

A bullet is a bullet. Right? Not so much. Crave just came out with a super affordable, strong, rechargeable, and damn good looking bullet. Did your favorite cockring, dildo or butt plug come with a battery operated bullet? You can replace them with this guy and never worry about those annoying watch batteries again!

Sutil Lube

$24

We’ve had Sutil Lube for a more than a year. And our staff still loves it. It’s super slick. Little or no taste. It’s delightful!

Estrogen Shortage!

Some women are trans. Some women who are trans choose to use hormones for gender confirmation. For many of these women, these hormones are life saving. They create changes in the body that are welcome, that are needed. Gender confirming hormone’s change the appearance of the person. The medication is a treatment that may enable a women to “pass” – passing isn’t something women need to do in order to be women – but it is something that can increase a woman’s safety and protect someone from being harassed, beaten or killed. Most importantly, many trans people who choose to use hormones report that they feel more themselves. Hormones certainly aren’t the right choice for every trans person. But for some, they are life changing and life sustaining.

 

And the estrogen is running out.

 

Not all of the estrogen, but the estrogen that most women prefer.

 

The standard of care for women seeking hormone treatment for gender confirmation has been 40mg of injectable estradiol. Women can get a similar dosage of estradiol from estradiol pills or patches (which are also prescribed to cis women experiencing more severe symptoms of peri-menopause and or seeking pregnancy through IVF). However, many trans women report that the non-injectable methods don’t create the same results.

 

The Par Pharmaceutical, the manufacturer of Delestrogen, ran into manufacturing difficulties when a supplier stopped making one of the ingredients in the medication. They were able to find a replacement ingredient, but it’s not an identical ingredient. Because there was a change in the formulation, the medication has to go through FDA approval again. As a result, the company has meds ready to ship, but they can’t release them. The rumor was that the meds would hit the market by October. They’re still not here. The new rumored date is January. Perrigo, the other company that makes injectable estradiol has vials on back order and expects to have it released by “mid-November”.

 

There’s a light at the end of the tunnel. The injectable estrogen is supposed to come back. In the mean time, women who have access to health care will also have access to a substitute medication. But, like always, it’s the under resourced women, the women without access to health care who are most at risk.

 

For a number of reasons – past poor treatment, lack of insurance, lack of access to a clinic skilled at trans healthcare, fear of dealing with the system - it’s not uncommon for women to buy their hormones on the street rather than at a clinicians office. It’s these women that clinicians are really concerned about. There are very little, if any, 40mg doses of estradiol left in the US. But people are still selling estradiol on the streets. Injectable estradiol is available in other countries, but it’s against the law to import the medication. The folks that are selling on the streets may be selling estradiol. Or estradiol cut with something. Or something else entirely. And it could be dangerous. Very dangerous.

 

So what can you do?

 

Make sure that people are aware of this issue. The more we talk about it, the quicker the FDA is likely to take action. Spread the word that stuff on the street is very likely to be unsafe.

 

And pay attention. We need to take care of each other.

*******

There’s been a meme going around encouraging cis women to get prescriptions for “estrogen only birth control” to help trans women if/when trans health coverage is devastated by the incoming administration. It’s a great idea, but there is no birth control on the market that has estrogen in it at a level that would be of use to trans women. Hormonal birth control pills intentionally have a very low dose of estrogen, in many cases the lowest possible that will work to inhibit ovulation. The sentiment of the meme is lovely. The reality is we need to look for other ways to support each other. Keep the love going!

NOTE: the above was written by Jacq, a cis women , if I mischaracterized anything, I welcome feedback.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

We need your help!

Edit: Bustle agreed to switch the link on the Magic Wand to Sugar. I'm grateful that my name and Sugar's name are no longer associated with a counterfeit product. I'm dissapointed that they are continuing to point their readers to a really crappy place to buy sex toys. If you're a business and looking for a way to promote your business and would like to link to sex toys or other products while maing a little money for you and your business a number of awesome sex toy stores have affiliate programs. I'd suggest checking out: Babeland, Early to Bed, Smitten Kitten or Shevibe (among others). Money is what pays for our food, or housing and sometimes those nice extras. Making money is part of how we take care of ourselves and those we love. There's a lot ways to do it. We work to do it with intentionality and integrity. We don't always hit the mark. But we're always working at it. We look forward to continuing to work with businesses that do the same.

Earlier this week I was approached by Bustle to do an interview in which I recommended sex toys for couples. I was asked to provide links to the products on the Sugar website and was told that they would link back to the products on the Sugar site in the article. I spent a decent amount of time answering their questions and selecting products. I was excited, because we've been working hard on growing our web presence.

The article went up yesterday. All of the links, save the last one, go to Amazon through Bustle’s Amazon Affiliate account. One of the links go to a Magic Wand* that I fully expect to be counterfeit.

We asked them to change it, especially the Magic Wand. It hasn’t changed. I’ve offered to provide them with links to other sex positive sex toy stores. Nothing.

Why is this a big deal? Well, in addition to the fact that i was lied to, that I engaged in upaid labor with an expectation of specific compensation (links), Amazon is literally the worst possible place to buy sex toys. I woulldn't refer my worst enemy there.

Amazon is rife with counterfeit sex toys and retailers who vanish leaving the customer with no recourse if they have an issue with the product.

Counterfeiting is especially a problem with higher end toys like the Magic Wand. There is no way this particular Magic Wand is legitimate. How do I know? The price on this Rechargeable Magic Wand is $95. In order to protect their brand, manufacturers often require retailers (both online and brick and mortar) to sign an agreement called a MAP agreement - minimum agreed price. Manufacturers do this to protect retailers and consumers from business that buy in bulk, sell products and disappear. They also do this to help them identify counterfeit products.

Unlike a counterfeit purse, counterfeit sex toys can actually be dangerous. I’ve heard of counterfeit Magic Wands not only breaking quickly, but sparking, even catching on fire. It’s physically dangerous in addition to being super shady and horrible customer service.

So now, my name is out there attached to a link to a probably counterfeit product on the worst possible place to buy sex toys.

I’m asking members of my sex positive community to help me. Go to Bustle’s Facebook page and comment. Ask them why they’re linking to counterfeit sex toys. Ask them why they lied to another feminist business. Do the same on Twitter. And share the hell out of this.

Thank you for your help!!

Here’s the article saved in the WayBack Machine.

https://web.archive.org/web/20161117213236/https://www.bustle.com/p/8-life-changing-sex-toys-for-couples-recommended-by-experts-22711

We're Hiring!

We're bringing in a new Sex Educator (the lovely folks who work the floor and provide education and customer service for our amazing customers)!

The right person for this position will be available to work 10-15 hours a week and must be available weekday evenings and weekends, including Saturday nights People who are not available to work these specific hours will not be considered. Pay is $12.50 an hour with an increase to $13 an hour after completion of a probationary period of around 6 weeks.

Please submit a cover letter and resume to jacq@sugartheshop.com by Thursday, September 22nd at 6pm. After applications are reviewed, several folks will be selected for interviews

In the cover letter include the ways in which your experience is relevant to the position and why you want to work at Sugar. Although in many cases, our ideal candidate has previous sex education experience, we're willing to teach the right person. Tell us why you're right for the job! Look over the required skills - do you have everything on the list?




Please confirm in the cover letter that you are available to work both weekend and weekday evenings.

No calls please - email only.

Sugar is committed to a diverse work force and welcomes applications from people of all ethnicities, sexual orientations and genders.

We're looking forward to meeting you!


Sex Educator
The Sex Educator is responsible for answering customers’ questions, using active listening skills to determine the customer’s concerns and needs, providing customers with the information they require to make the purchases that are best for them and/or providing customers with referrals to other community organizations, stores or healthcare providers if Sugar is not able to meet their needs.  In addition, SEs process sales in the POS system, stock the store and maintain information in the Inventory Control system, ensure that the store is clean and tidy at all times, fulfillment of customer orders for shipping and perform other duties as assigned.  These duties may include:  store decoration, workshop instruction and/or special events.
Required skills:
-       A passion for Sugar’s mission
-       Computer literacy
-       Excellent customer service
-       Able to accurately work with money
-       Able to lift 50 pounds
-       Able to work evenings and weekends
-       Comfort with and acceptance of diverse sexualities
-       Cultural competency with diverse communities
-       Knowledge and understanding of queer and gender issues
-       Commitment to a team environment
-       A mind that is open to new things and ways of solving problems
Preferred:
Previous experience in sexuality education, counseling and/or retail.
Sugar will provide Sex Educators with:
$12.50 an hour – eligible for increase after successful completion of training
A commitment to a systems oriented work place.
A work place that is respectful and supportive.

Mission

Sugar is a lesbian owned, multi-gender operated, for profit, mission driven sex toy store.  By providing education and toys in a shame free, sex positive, fun environment we help people of all genders and orientations experience their own unique sexuality with shameless joy and passion. 

Vision

A world in which healthy sexuality is respected and celebrated in all of its diversity.

Values

Sugar believes that sex between consenting adults is sacred, powerful and fun and should be celebrated and honored.  By providing quality education and toys in a sex positive, fun atmosphere, we will help foster healthy sexuality.  In order to provide our customers with impeccable customer service we strive to create a work environment that is healthy and supportive of each and every member of the Sugar team. 

ANME (or the adult trade show)

Welcome to the new Sugar blog!


Check back often - we'll have updates regularly!


It's been a busy summer at the store. And we'll tell you all about it!


I (this is Jacq) went to the ANME in Burbank. The ANME is a trade show for the adult industry that's held two times a year.

An adult industry trade show isn't as racey as you might expect. I mean sure, there was a giant dildo in the middle of the trade show floor, but no go-go dancers, no strippers, no porn on loop. And everyone was fully dressed. But there was a giant dildo (and by giant I mean about 12 feet high. And, in one booth, you could stick your finger in a butt made out of Cyberskin that would then twerk. Somehow virtual reality goggles were also a part of this set up. I spent most of the time wandering the floor, picking toys up, turning them on, asking questions about materials and once, had some choice words for the Lelo reps.

Why choice words for Lelo? Well, they've been slowly going to hell for years. Then this year they took a deep dive into misogyny pool. They released a condom calle Hex. The concept is that the latex is poured in hexagons which increases the tensile strength of the whole thing. Which is great. Right? They promote it by showing how one can stick pins in it and poking a hole in one part of the condom won't cause the whole thing to break. Of course what that means is that, one part of your condom is leaking and you don't know that it's leaking. Which means that you don't access Plan B (to prevent pregnancy) or PrEP (to prevent HIV). Frankly,if my condom has a hole in it, I damn sure want to know about it!

So the condom is problematic. Then they hired a celebrity spokesperson. Take a minute and think about who the worst possible celebrity spokesperson could be. I'll wait. Nope. Not the Duggars. Not Donald Trump. Not Mel Gibson.

Charlie Sheen.

A man with a history of domestic violence that's decades long and spans multiple relationships.

Awesome.

The rep said, "any celebrity endorsement can be controversial, can't it!".

Um. Nope. Not "any".

I took a deep breath and walked away. If you'd like more info about why Lelo is the worst, check out Dangerous Lily's blog post. We dumped most Lelo products several years ago. This move put the nail in the coffin. You won't find any Lelo in Sugar. There are plenty of other companies that make better products at better price points. If there's a specific Lelo product you love, email us and we'll help you find a better option.

Then I went off to look at more toys from other companies. I found some great products! They'll be showing up int he store over the next few months (how's a vegan BDSM line sound?).

Not only did I find some great new toys (they'll be in showing up in the store over the next few months), but I got to spend time with other folks who own sex positive stores. It was great to hang out with them, have some laughs, a few drinks and just share about how each of us runs our stores - what works, what didn't work. It's fascinating to see how each of us do things a little bit differently and how the way we run our businesses reflects our personalities. It was also good to see all the ways in which we overlap. I'm pretty damn lucky to work in a business that has such amazing people.

I also got to see Rachel, who is one of the owners of Babeland. I worked in reproductive health care and sex ed for years, but my few years at Babeland are where I started learning the pleasure part of the industry. It's amazing to me to see how Babeland managed to create an environment that worked as an incubator for so many folks who work through out the industry today. I'm forever grateful to the people I worked with there, and specifically to Clare and Rachel for getting me started in this part of the business. Being able to talk about sex from a pleasure based perspective brings me joy every day. I wouldn't be here, working with the incredible Sugar staff, or most importantly, with you, our amazing customers if it weren't for Babeland. So: THANK YOU BABELAND!!

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