Frequently Asked Questions
Now that the muddling of the terms Platinum Grade and Medical Grade silicone has been discussed (see previous blog post) the newest promotional hook by some has been to label products as being made with a certified “skin-safe” silicone. On the surface this is misleading in that virtually all cured platinum grade silicones are already inherently “skin-safe”. Furthermore, this certification only refers to the silicone in its uncured, raw state so that it might be used directly on the skin for life casting purposes, something a toy user will never need to consider. But even if the skin-safe designation were relevant to toy choice, once pigments or release agents that aren’t “skin-safe” are added to the silicone during production, the designation is automatically invalidated unless those ingredients are certified “skin-safe” as well, which they won’t be by their very nature.
I’m trying to think of a comparison here to make it more relatable… I guess it could be something like advertising your brand of french fries were only made with “cholesterol free potatoes low in sodium” (which they already are by nature) to make them sound healthy, but then before serving them frying them in duck fat and adding salt.
It might not be a perfect analogy, but hopefully it works enough to make the point.
The question of medical grade silicone comes up quite a bit, like if I use it in my production, and which is better, medical or platinum grade?
The answer to this question isn’t as straight forward as you’d think it would be…
Some background first. It’s not called Platinum because it sounds good like you would rate something bronze, silver, gold, platinum. The reason it’s called Platinum Grade refers to the catalyst used in the curing of the raw material to become the finished product, in this case the catalyst is the metal platinum.
This is a relatively new question as plugs have become more mainstream over the past few years, breaking out of the bedroom and being something of a fetish of their own worn for long periods. I came to this conclusion after seeing the question of odor removal become more frequent as plugs have become more popular in the last few years. It’s rare that someone would play with a dildo without some type of clean out first, so odor issues have never come up before, but with plugs it’s another matter entirely.
So I decided to do some research on the subject, initially thinking it would be quickly resolved, but I was wrong. After a few months of trying different things I finally discovered the hurdle and the answer to getting odor off your plug.
Since most of my toys are made to fit our bodies, the majority are constructed with oval cross-sections making the diameter vary. Anyhow, your hole really doesn’t care how ‘wide’ something is….it sees things in terms of how far around it’s going to have to stretch ‘around’ an object.
And for my irregularly shaped creations, circumference gives a much more accurate reading of how big you’re going to have to stretch to get around it. Also, being hand-made objects, even those that may appear spherical are still not perfectly round.
Unfortunatley not. The good news is that the silicone won’t crack on its own. Guarding the integrity of the surface against knicks, crimps and undue stress is the best insurance. I never recommend throwing them in a drawer or chest, upright on a shelf is best.
What kind of lube is best and will any of them harm my toys?
I formulate my silicone to have a nice ‘cushiony’ spring to it but still be firm enough so it can stand up on its own for handsfree play and make it easy to handle. My toys are definitely softer than most of the hard rubber or vinyl ones, and even more importantly, they don’t harden with age either.
Most all of my toys do have a base of some sort, taking different forms depending on their intended use. People seem to take issue mostly with the ‘table top’ models like “Baby Head” or “Uncut7”, which are relatively shorter and appear they could fall in to someone.
I am a member of the very same community that I sell to, so I only design toys that I would feel comfortable playing with myself, using proper judgement. If a toy is so small that you would be excessively worried it might go in all the way without much force, then it is definitely a toy I would not recommend you play with. I have to design shapes for all statures of men and women, so all toys are not appropriate for all people. I ask that you use your own judgement and only play with toys that won’t cause you worry.
Silicone is an extremely difficult elastomer to work with and requires some specialized industrial equipment, technical and practical experience, and vacuum processing to get a successful result. Something I could not recommend just anyone attempt.
Silicone runs in the range of $100 per gallon and mistakes quickly become costly. The combination of the initial investment in research and equipment combined with the high cost of the raw material is probably why there just aren’t that many studios creating toys in silicone. The reason why I think I am the only producer of large silicone toys on the market today is my very personal interest in the product.