Over the last few years, there’s been an explosion of femtech brands, many of which have been created to make pregnancy and motherhood easier to navigate. But before we get to baby-making - there’s the lovemaking (and the two do tend to go hand in hand).
Innovations in technology are making our sex lives more exciting, enjoyable, and fruitful - and with female founders and creators taking the reigns, female pleasure is finally being put to the top of tech companies’ list of priorities. Here are some of our favorite femtech brands that are changing the game in the bedroom.
The invention making sex less messy
Hands up, who’s ever had to deal with that post-sex semen drop? You know, where it comes rushing out of you - be it onto the bed, the floor, or (if you’re really lucky) down your legs as you’re rushing down the escalator on the way to work… Sound familiar? It was something Awkward Essentials Founder Frances Tang was dealing with daily in her marriage - impacting her enjoyment of sex. “I always hated the after-sex clean-up ritual. The crossed-leg-ninja roll off the bed, penguin walk to the bathroom, and camp out on the toilet was not the business,” she says. “My hacked-together solution of toilet paper, crusty old t-shirts, towels, and showers still inevitably led to next day gushing, wet sheets and ruined underwear.”
A bolt of inspiration when she was baking (“every time I would scrape the batter out of a bowl, I’d think about inventing a spatula to get all the last bits of goo out of my vagina... “) led to the creation of The Dripstick. The simple yet innovative piece of kit is essentially a tampon-shaped sponge with a handle. Made of soft, medical-grade material that won’t irritate your most intimate area, you insert it into your vaginal canal and give it a brief, gentle twirl around. The sponge absorbs the semen so you can get on with your day without worrying about any awkward messiness.
“Our dripstick stops the drips at the source, so there’s no more ruined bedsheets, underwear, next-day dripping, or that weird smell we all know and hate. If there’s one less thing for a woman to worry about, that’s a pretty sweet improvement in my book!” says Frances. “We’ve also had customers tell us that they are more open to quickies, morning sex, and having more sex in general since they no longer have to deal with the cleanup.” Anything that gives women the confidence to seek more pleasure is a must-have femtech purchase in our eyes!
The tool making sex less painful
Research shows that around 75% of women will experience painful sex in their lifetime - and many will accept that it’s something they have to deal with. But that shouldn’t be the case and is something femtech brand Ohnut is dedicated to changing. Ohnut can help manage deep pain during sex by allowing couples to customize how deep penetration goes. The comfy, modular rings link together and stack around a penetrating partner (think Fisher Price rainbow stacking toy) - like a bumper! The rings stay outside the body and can be added or removed at any time, for any position, so that you and your partner can put your needs first and enjoy each other.
Not only can painful sex inhibit our pursuit of pleasure, but it can also have a huge impact on our self-esteem and mental wellbeing - which is something founder Emily Sauer experienced herself. “For folks experiencing pain during sex, there's often a fear around exploring sexually, which is justifiable given that it's hard to feel spicy when sex might hurt!“ she says. “I also created Ohnut because every time sex went uncomfortably deep, I felt like a failure. My confidence tanked, my body was acting in ways I didn't understand, and when doctors denied me any support, I felt more alone than ever. Ohnut replaces shame with relatability and opens our eyes to what we're deserving of far beyond our sex lives.”
While the rings have many benefits, they can benefit women experiencing discomfort after having a baby. “Ohnut is most helpful for those who experience deeper pain during sex, clinically known as Deep Dyspareunia,” explains Emily. “We’ve also seen a ton of support from new moms (with uterine prolapse, pelvic floor dysfunction, scar tissue from a c-section, etc.) and folks with endometriosis, fibroids, and menopause.”
The brand putting female pleasure center stage
We couldn’t talk about tech in the bedroom without talking about vibrators. But did you know that many sex toy brands are founded by men in suits - who probably know more about investment rounds than they do about the clitoris?
Well, that’s certainly not the case at Naked Grapefruit, a sexual wellness brand founded by 26-year-old entrepreneur Victoria Parrott.
“I was having plenty of sex when I was younger, but I realized that I really wasn’t getting much physical pleasure out of it,” she explains. “I went to my first sex shop to look into getting a vibrator, and I was met with an overwhelming wall of dildos and intrusive shop assistants, asking me questions I didn’t know the answer to. The experience wasn’t enjoyable at all, and I was no closer to understanding my personal pleasure - and that’s when I had the idea for Naked Grapefruit".
The brand’s hero product, a vibrator named First Base, is all about celebrating the clitoris, consistently misunderstood aside from the occasional rub during lazy foreplay. It has 7 different speeds and settings and features a rechargeable battery (great for the environment), and has no harmful materials (great for your body). 99% of Grapefruit customers rate the vibrate at five stars, proving that while Victoria may have created the brand in pursuit of her own personal pleasure - she has helped hundreds of women find theirs too.
Not only is the brand dedicated to ensuring we get the explosive orgasms we deserve, but it is also keen to break down the stigma and shame surrounding sexual experiences. Be it taking a lol-worthy look at the weirdest things we say during sex to tackling more serious topics like slut-shaming and sexual trauma. The community surrounding the brand is just as powerful as the products themselves. “For me, Grapefruit is more than just creating vibrators and lube. I want to create a space where people of all genders feel comfortable discussing a broad range of topics and a community that is shame-free and sex-positive,” says Victoria. “ I love that the younger generation is getting access to the sort of information I wish I’d had.”