Pretty much anything can be used as a sex toy if you’re feeling creative. If you look around your bedroom, bathroom, or kitchen, there are plenty of things that vibrate and things that can feel like a tongue (if you use your imagination). None of the household sex toys below will beat the effectiveness of an actual sex toy — which is pretty understandable, since these items were primarily created to perform other, less sultry tasks, like cleaning your teeth, clothes and unknotting your hair.
But if you're on a budget or too shy to enter a sex shop — or perhaps even too shy to purchase a sex toy online — there are many household items that double as sex toys that can do a heck of a job making your sexual exploits a little more exciting. And nobody has to be left out of the equation: Couples can even use these makeshift sex toys to get off together. In fact, many do — according to a 2018 survey of 976 people, 70% of women have used a household item for sexual pleasure.
Since these items aren't primarily intended for sexual use, it's important that you be cautious with each of the items suggested below and make sure they're thoroughly cleaned with soap and water or sex toy cleaner prior to getting it on and after you’re finished. This will help you avoid getting urinary tract infections (UTIs), which can occur when old bacteria comes into contact with your genital area. This primarily happens to people with vaginas but can happen to people with penises, too, so it’s best to err on the side of caution. Check the item’s material before cleaning it, as each one has different rules — for instance, a motorized item shouldn’t be fully submerged in the water.
Once you’re up to speed on cleaning practices, you’re good to go!If you want to add a little something new to your sex life without spending a dime, give these household stand-ins a shot.
1. Shower Head
Your shower head can make for a fantastic clitoral stimulator. While it doesn’t exactly feel like a tongue, it definitely mimics the feel of a vibrator. If you haven't tried this out yet, turn your shower on, and experiment with a variety of temperature settings and speeds.
“Many a vulva owner's first orgasm was produced by this baby,” sex educator Lola Jean tells Elite Daily. “The steady flow of water and pressure can lead to some excellent orgasms and pleasure because of the stimulation.”
2. Banana Peel
If you have bananas in your fridge, anyone with a penis can use the peel as a masturbatory sleeve. To do this, cut a small slit in the skin and tip, scoop the majority of the banana out and slide the peel over the shaft. “This is similar to grapefruiting,” Jean says, “For extra sensation, try heating it up.” Just make sure to use a new banana peel every time.
3. Scarves Or Thigh-High Stockings
Head into your closet and grab some of your scarves or thigh-high stockings. These garments can serve as formidable blindfolds and handcuffs (when securely tied to the bedposts).
Jean also attests that scarves and stockings can be used directly on the body during foreplay. “I love using stockings, lacy, or silky materials,” she says. “[Try] either using them to masturbate through the material, or dragging them along the skin to provide a different sensation.”
4. Paper Clips Or Binder Clips
If you’re interested in nipple clamps but want to test the waters before spending money, meet the office item you never knew you needed for sex: paper clips. Use them to gently pinch your nipples or stimulate any part of the body where that kind of pressure might feel good. Try your ears, your stomach, or even your toes.
5. Ice Cubes
There are many ways to incorporate ice cubes into sex. Try running a cube over your partner's body teasingly, not excessively (you’re not trying to recreate a polar plunge experience). It's a fun, innovative way to add a little something new to your foreplay routine. Additionally, ice cubes are also a great tool for oral sex.
“I like to hold the ice cube and warm it with my hand to control where the drips go ...as opposed to applying it directly to someone’s skin,” Jean explains. “You can also suck on the ice cube before you go down on someone to give another different sensation.” For more temperature play, she suggests following up with a heated activity using oil or body heat.
6. Bathtub Faucet
While the handheld shower head may be a more buzz-worthy sex object, you can also use the bathtub faucet to the same effect. Just lay down on your back with your legs vertically against the wall, and let the water stimulate your clitoris. Be sure to keep the water on the colder side to avoid burning something.
“The bathtub faucet can be as effective as the shower head,” Jean tells Elite Daily.
7. Electric Toothbrush
The vibrating sensations of an electric toothbrush can be gentle enough to feel spectacular, as long as you’re careful. ”I believe this was the world’s first vibrator,” Jean says. “ Vibration provides something a human cannot do with such ease: repetition and consistency. If you have a penis, vibration in the perenial area or on the frenulum can also be quite nice. However, I’d recommend using an actual vibrator and not a toothbrush.” Toothbrush bristles can be abrasive, and you don’t want to damage any of the delicate skin in that area. Plus, cleaning a toothbrush can be trickier than cleaning sex toys, which are designed specifically to be cleaned pre- and post-sex.
8. Coconut Oil
Many people love using coconut oil as lube because of its effectiveness as a natural moisturizer. If you try this, just be careful. "Oil-based lubricants are used for sexual activity; however they can break down condoms, stain sheets, and be messy," sexuality expert Kelly J. Connell, M.S. Ed., previously told Elite Daily. Plus, coconut oil can sometimes disrupt the vaginal pH, so it’s not the best choice for people prone to UTIs or yeast infections. But as a massage oil on other parts of your body, it’s a safe and great-smelling natural option.
Into spanking? Head to the kitchen for a spatula. For the best results, seek out spatulas made from rubber or silicone. If you don’t have either of these, a wooden spoon can work, too. However, before engaging in any kind of sexual activity, especially BDSM or something that might involve pain, it’s imperative to have a conversation with your partner about consent, boundaries, and intentions.
"All sex is based on this very important concept of consent. Skipping the consent discussion means you risk doing significant harm to others and to themselves,” erotic coach and sex educator Dawn Serra told Bustle. Just make sure you and your partner are on the same page about your preferences, safe words, and other essentials before trying something new.
10. Washing Machine
Turn on the spin cycle, take a seat, and let the washing machine do all the work while it cleans your laundry. Oh yeah, and it works for sex, too — intercourse on top of the laundry machine can be incredibly stimulating and erotic.
Jean says, “The vibration is large enough to influence the bones and areas inside of the body that will stimulate the G-area or P-spots, depending on your genitals.”
11. Belt Or Rope
A belt is a great way to experiment with tying each other up. If it’s leather, you can cinch your partner’s hands with it, or if it’s a softer material like a rope, you can tie them to the bed or to a chair. Then, once you’ve figured out whether you like this, you can graduate to handcuffs and other bondage toys.
12. Back Massager
Like the electric toothbrush, the key to the back massager is its ability to vibrate. Most back massagers already have many settings to play around with, helping to deliver a seriously intense orgasm.
“Believe it or not, the Hitachi Magic Wand was initially made and marketed as a back massager,” Jean explains, “because that [is] what it was manufactured as.” Who knew?
13. Your Phone
In order to masturbate with your phone, download a vibration app, and play around with the various intensity levels. “You can put your phone on a really high vibrate,” Jean says. “Then let the moans you make become your new ringtone.”
14. Your Favorite Dessert
Food play can be an extremely fun (and delicious) way to spice up your sex life. Melted chocolate, whipped cream, honey, you name it — apply it to your partner’s body and lick it off of them slowly. That’s one way to have your cake and eat it, too.
Who knew these items you have lying around could have a whole new life in the bedroom? Feel free to get imaginative. Just one more thing: If you plan to transition the item back to household use later on, make sure you are thoroughly disinfecting it (or, in the case of something like a toothbrush, just let it stay a sex toy from now on).
Superdrug. (n.d.). Sex Toy 101. Superdrug Online Doctor. https://onlinedoctor.superdrug.com/sex-toy-101/.
Lola Jean, sex educator, mental health professional, and former domme.
Dawn Serra, sex educator, and erotic coach.
Additional reporting by Iman Hariri-Kia.
This article was originally published on