7 Different Types of Vibrators & How to Use Them

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7 Different Types of Vibrators & How to Use Them

 

It’s about that time … that’s right, vibrator o’clock. ;)

Seriously though, vibrators are one of the staples of many a sex toy collection. And, while finding the right vibrating sex toy can be a challenge in itself (it’s easy to fall down the rabbit hole of sex toys on The Internet, amirite?), we’re here to help you locate the vibrator of your dreams. But first, a few getting-to-know-you questions:

 

What kind of sensations are you looking for?

When you’re seeking to up your sexual pleasure with a vibrator, one of the first things you need to identify is what kind of glorious physical feelings you want to have. For example, a clitoral vibrator will do the trick if you are (or your partner is) a vulva-owner looking for some great clitoral action. If you’re looking for primarily external stimulation and you want something discreet that fits in your purse or a pocket, maybe a bullet vibrator or pocket rocket-style vibe is right for you.

Are you seeking magnificent G-spot stimulation? You’re going to want a curvy internal vibrator, like one of the many fantastic g-spot vibrators that are available these days. Are you a fan of blended orgasms? Rabbit vibrators might be the right choice for you.

The other thing to know is that there are actually different types of vibration: some are more buzzy in terms of sensation, while others are deeper and more rumbly. While all vibrators will, well, vibrate, they differ in the types or patterns of sonic waves they emit, which will change how they feel against your inner or outer erogenous zones. According to sexual health educator Navy Bastiaans, “Buzzy vibes provide more of a high-pitched hum, comparable to the vibrations of an electric toothbrush, which focuses stimulation more on the surface of the clit.”

For example, many finger vibrators and bullet vibes provide more of a buzz, while some g-spot vibes give off lower-pitched vibrations, which can penetrate more deeply into your body. Many vagina-having folks gravitate to this “rumbly” sensation, since it can stimulate both the outer portion of the clitoris (the little nub you can see) as well as the internal clitoral network, which extends all the way inside and around the vaginal canal. Fun fact: the G-spot is part of the clitoral network.

Now, if you like to get yourself off in one particular way, you may want to stick with mimicking that type of sensation for your first vibrator. That said, just as it’s valuable to explore different erogenous zones, it’s also very much worth exploring different kinds of vibrators to see what you actually like and what feels good.

 

Do Your Research

First off, let’s clear up a misconception that vibrators can cause nerve damage. They can’t, so you can scratch that off your list of research topics! Of course, if you don’t use your vibrator (or any sex toy, for that matter) properly, you run the risk of injury. Play safe, is all we’re saying.

As far as research goes, we have a ton of info on things like best long distance vibrator, how to use a rabbit vibrator or how to use a bullet vibrator, in our linked blogs. Knowledge is power, and  looking into all different vibrators options and how they function can help you figure out which one is right for you.  

 

What type of material do you want in a vibe?

The second thing you should consider is what your new vibrator will be made of. This is important whether or not it’s going to go inside you, because what you really don’t want is a potentially skin-irritating sex toy, or one made of a material you’re allergic to.

Essentially, you’ll want to avoid any sex toy, whether that’s a prostate massager or a wand vibrator, that’s made of a lower quality, porous material. Porous toys get a hard pass mainly because they can’t be reliably cleaned, which is problematic. You could potentially end up with  skin irritation or even a bacterial infection if you use a non-clean sex toy, and with porous toys, no matter how much you clean them, you can’t be sure they’re all the way there. If you do go with a softer, more porous sex toy material, you’ll need to be extra vigilant about cleaning it, and, unless you’re adding condoms into the mix, never share it with anyone.

On the other hand, non-porous toys can be both cleaned and, often, disinfected — i.e., dropped in boiling water to help kill anything that might still be hanging out in a nook or cranny. When sourcing high-quality sex toys, you might notice that they’re often priced a bit higher. However, when it comes to things going inside your (or your partner’s body), it’s worth the investment! 

Here’s a quick yes/no of materials:

Yes:

  • Metal 
  • Silicone
  • Glass 
  • ABS plastic

 

No:

  • Latex (many people have latex allergies)
  • Jelly (porous)
  • Fanta Flesh/CyberSkin sex toys (again, porous)
  • PVC sex toys  (may contain phthalates)
  • TPR/TPE sex toys (older TPR toys often contained phthalates; new ones might too)

 

Glad that’s over with. Onward!

 

These Aren’t Construction Vibrators!

A little housekeeping: sex toy vibrators won’t cause you physical harm. This isn’t the construction industry; you’re not operating a rebar shaker or plate vibrator. You’re not trying to get a viscous liquid level with a surface vibrator, vibrating table, or needle vibrator, and you certainly don’t need to worry about concrete compaction.

While vibrating devices like form vibrators and immersion vibrators are neat — and seeing cute construction workers use vibrating screeds to smooth a surface can be fodder for sessions with your vibrator down the line — sex toy vibrators simply don’t have the same level of kick. You can’t hurt your any-gender bits with vibrating sex toys. Je Joue doesn’t make a shutter vibrator and the Lelo Soraya won’t level concrete as well as a poker vibrator or concrete vibrator, but they’re very good at their jobs of making your toes curl.

So now that we know vibrators can’t hurt you, let’s talk about all the different ways they can, ahem, help. Here are the 7 different kinds of vibrators and how to use them:

 

1. Clitoral Vibrator

Here’s the deal: sex researchers all over the place will corroborate the fact that for a lot of people with vaginas, penetrative sex often won’t lead to the big O. Rates vary depending on the research, but it’s generally agreed upon that at least 75% of women (or rather, those with vaginas) don’t climax through sexual intercourse.

But if you add in that magic sauce known as “clitoral stimulation,” you get numbers that are a whole lot higher. In fact, according to developmental psychologist and human sexuality professor Dr. Zhana Vrangalova, “The easiest type of orgasm to reach for a vulva-owner is the external clitoral one. This is because the external clitoris is the part of the body that contains the greatest density of nerve endings that, when stimulated, can lead to pleasure.”

Now, there are a whole bunch of options when it comes to  clitoral vibrators — the whole next category is dedicated to bullet vibes, for example. But you should also know that there are actually a lot of other toys, including some G-spot vibrators, that also provide clitoral stimulation. Yes, you can actually have both G-spot stimulation and clitoral stimulation at the same time. #heaven 

 

2. Bullet Vibrator

This is a sort of sub-category of clitoral vibrators — these little guys are fantastic for stimulating the clit, and what’s great about them is that they’re itty-bitty. A bullet vibe is really everything you need and nothing you don’t. You can get a bullet vibe that looks like a tube of lipstick, so it’s super-portable, and if it falls out of your purse, you won’t get knowing looks from your colleagues (unlike that massive, realistic-looking dildo you’ve got waiting in your nightstand drawer.)

Bullet vibrators are easy to use and awesome when pairing them with other activities, like partnered sex. For example, if you’re doin’ it doggy style and you want some extra loving on your clit, bring in that bullet! 

 

3. Rabbit Vibrator

If you’re looking for something more substantial and that can provide what are known as blended orgasms, look no further than a rabbit vibrator. With a full-on shaft that gets you all that yummy internal stimulation and an external tickler that buzzes and throbs where it counts (to be clear, on your clit/outer sweet spots), this magical device is sure to bring you tons of pleasure.

The only potential complication when it comes to getting a rabbit vibrator is that there are a lot of them on the market. Yes, much like actual bunnies, rabbits have proliferated to the point where it can be hard to tell them apart.

There’s a lot of variation in this category, including different vibration modes (what kind of vibes you get), speeds (how fast do you want your hare to run?), and patterns. While many rabbit vibrators look similar, some have extremely quiet dual motors (yep, there are two!), while others sound like … well, kind of like a power tool.

So what’s the same? The basic shape and essence: every rabbit vibe will have a penetrator meant for internal stimulation and an outer stimulator (yes, it’s often a bunny). The external tickler will take care of clitoral stimulation while the penetrator pleases internally. Again, this adds to the potential for blended orgasms — the joy of a simultaneous vaginal and clitoral orgasm. The fact is, this coordinated stimulation of the whole clitoral network is simply a totally different animal from a clitoral orgasm. Getting the G-spot involved really does make a difference.

 

4. Wearable Vibrator

This is a very fun category, especially if you’re into the idea of being pleasured in public, in secret. You can also use wearable vibes for hands-free solo pleasure time, which can be extra fun because of all the other things you can do with your mitts. Think of wearable vibrators like the AirPods of the sex-toy world.

But back to public, secret sexy time. This is obviously entertaining whether you’re just making yourself squirm or if it’s your partner getting you off. Out to dinner for date night? Pluck that wearable vibe out of its velvet pouch and stick it in your panties. Voila! Your server will never guess why you’re giggling.

What should you look for in a wearable vibrator? One big thing to consider is how quiet it is. If you know you want to be playing in public, experts suggest that the highest noise level should be no more than 50db. You also want one with a remote control, so your partner can tickle you sweetly, whenever they want (the best is when you’re least expecting it!). Some wearable vibes have an actual separate remote, while others are app-controlled, so your partner can turn you on with just the touch of a button, no matter how far apart you are geographically.

There are also wearable vibes that offer clitoral stimulation as well as those that can do G-spot stimulation. Some wearable vibrators even have things like heating capabilities (yes, they’ll keep you warm on a cold winter’s night), or massage modes. And let’s not forget the ones that come with anal beads!

There are even wearables for penis-owners. Vibrating cock rings can also be a wonderful source of pleasure. Ever wanted a regular old penis to turn into a vibrating penis? Penis rings are here to help.

 

5. Suction Vibrators

Ever wished your dream partner were there to give you a spine-tingling head? If you ever need that thrilling sensation of oral sex but don’t have a real person there to indulge you, look no further than one of the newest categories of clitoral sex toys: the clitoral suction vibe.

While a lot of vibrators are great at producing that rumbly sensation we’ve discussed, suction toys are fantastic at mimicking really good oral sex. How does this work, exactly? Well, they’re not really suction devices (if you’re a bit intimidated at the concept of putting a small suction device right over the most sensitive part of your body, you’re not alone). In fact, these ‘vibrators’ produce pulses of positive and negative pressure that can feel like a tongue licking on you, but are definitely not actually vacuuming up your clit.

As far as how to use one, sexperts recommend that you not try to make a tight seal between the toy and your clitoris — it can be too intense. Instead, lightly place the tip or “mouth” part of the toy at the tip of your clit, and see how that feels. You already know what kind of clit stimulation you like — do you like it more when you touch the hood of your clit instead of the actually sensitive tissue underneath? Then do that with the toy, and you’re off to the races. 

 

6. G-spot Vibrators

Now we’re back into rumbly territory. When you’re looking for your perfect G-spot vibrator, keep in mind what you already know you like; do you like firmer or more squishy toys? Do you adore a lot of pressure on your G-spot? You’ll want something with a deeper curve. And do you also want some of that nice clitoral stimulation while you’re toying with your inner hemisphere, so to speak? Then you want a toy that offers dual stimulation.

Remember that your G-spot is located a few inches within your vaginal canal, on the top of your vaginal wall. It can be a hard spot to reach … but not for a toy designed exactly for that.

Looking for the best G-spot vibrator for you? Read our linked blog!

 

7. Anal Vibrators

First, a heads-up: what goes into your anus must come out. So if your anal vibrator (or any other toy) is not shaped correctly, it can get stuck. In other words, you really want to use an actual anal vibrator — or butt plug, or any other anal sex toy you’re working with — instead of improvising. You wouldn’t believe the number of ER visits dedicated to removing something from someone’s tushy.

Basically, when it comes to anal play, you always want a toy that has a flared bottom (much like the fat-bottomed girls that make the rockin’ world go round). This will make it easy to remove after sex. You also want something smooth.

If you’re a newbie when it comes to butt stuff, we suggest starting small. Bigger isn’t always better, especially when it comes to this. You also want to make sure to use plenty of lube; where both vaginas and penises naturally lubricate themselves, that’s not part of the deal for your anus. You need to help toys to get all up in there. And remember to relax; the more relaxed you are, the better it’s going to feel and the more you’re going to enjoy yourself.

 

Honorable mention:

Wand Vibrator - Perhaps best known as the classic vibrator, there's a reason wand vibrators have remained a go-to sex toyl Every since the Magic Wand hit the market back in the 60’s, it's been a stimulation staple for thousands of folks, and is still considered one of the best sex toys by many.

 

--- Tis the Season

So there you have it! A vibrator for every occasion. Whether you’re shopping for a vibrator for you or a loved one, happy hunting. On the first day of Christmas, my true love gave to me … a vibrating set of anal beads. ;)

 

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Melanie is a sex researcher and relationship coach with a Master’s in Communication from Stanford University. She has a background in helping people recover from sexual abuse, and is passionate about trauma-informed therapy. In addition to being the host of popular podcast Dear Men: How to Rock Sex, Dating, and Relationships, her work has been published or seen on TODAY, HuffPost, Forbes, Business Insider, The New York Observer, and more.