Ah, Christmas - the most wonderful time of the year. Choirs are singing carols, the houses on Franklin Road are using a year's worth of power in one week, and we're all cranking into our advent calendars full of chocolate and... sex toys?
Adult Toy Megastore (ATM) is trying to bring sexy back to Kiwi Christmas with their very aesthetically pleasing 'Naughty or Nice' advent calendar.
The sexy Christmas treat went online earlier this month and to say it went nuts is an understatement. Women were excitedly sharing their purchases in various intimate Facebook groups, and the online sex toy retailer says it quickly sold out.
Each calendar contains 24 beautifully decorated gold-leaf boxes, containing sex toys and accessories of various exciting levels.
In the "24 days of fun" calendar customers receive:
- 11 unique sex toys including a luxurious wand vibrator
- Five "cosmetics and lubricants"
- Four items for "soft bondage"
- Four "accessories" like sexy dice or massage oil
The idea is that you open a box each day, either alone or with a partner. Then, just as you would scoff advent calendar chocolate immediately, you use that sex toy as soon as possible.
I was one of those lucky enough to get my paws on one, for the sake of journalism. However, as we neared the end of November, I realised I hadn't yet cracked it open.
It occurred to me oh, about a day ago, that if I were to spread the word of this new kind of Christmas cheer, I'd better get a move on to let people know before December actually gets started.
In a blind panic, I texted my boyfriend, telling him: "We have to try the whole advent calendar tonight so I can write about it for the site."
"The whole thing?" he queried nervously. "I better have a coffee."
Best-laid plans and all that. But as it turns out, the whole box didn't get used on Thursday evening. A large dinner at an Italian restaurant with three different forms of carbohydrates and just enough red wine to make me sleepy but not horny, meant we decided to randomly select six of the toys to try as a sort of tasting menu.
Mon and Sez talk all things sex toys on Newshub podcast The Snack.
Unfortunately, things started off with a bit of a hiss, rather than a bang (sorry).
A remote-controlled vibrating egg was full of promise - except the batteries didn't work. Thus ensued a very sexy 15 minutes of me taking the egg apart, checking the batteries were in the right way, putting it back together, trying it again, then my boyfriend taking it apart, checking the batteries were in the right way etc, etc. There's nothing sexier than sniping: "I already did that" at your partner, IMO.
But after the disappointment of the egg, it was only up from there. There was a bottle of lubricant, a weird vibrating finger accessory, some sexy dice, a vibrating wand and something called the 'masturbator' - Google it, but not at work.
These all got two thumbs up from us.
We even gave some sexy playing cards with Karma Sutra positions a valiant try, although that ended up being more funny than sexy. My partner had to contort himself into a yoga wheel, which was not exactly hot, but very good for core strength.
Things went slightly awry though, when we dropped the cards in the bed and had to scramble around trying to get them. "It's like sexy 'Pick Up 52'!" my boyfriend cried, as we tried to gather them with our slippery lubed hands.
It was, all in all, slightly exhausting but fun.
I imagine using the calendar with one item a day - as ATM intended - would be nothing but a hoot. For those who might be nervous about heading into a store with an overwhelming array of products on offer, the advent calendar is a one-stop, glossy gold shop. It's high quality, very pretty, and definitely gets the job done.
I gathered up a random selection of boxes and gifted them to my The Snack podcast co-host Monika and she was over the bloody moon.
My boyfriend and I have left ourselves a few to try over December, and after our trial, we're excited. Next time, we probably won't down an entire Spaghetti Carbonara beforehand.
Currently, the calendar is sold out on the Adult Toy Megastore website, but a spokeswoman has promised a new shipment is on the way.
So if you're looking for a last-minute Christmas present for a partner or very good friend, consider this one. I don't know if I'd recommend it for gran, but she might appreciate the cards for a game of Bridge.