Demystifying the Dildo: A Q&A with Desirables
What do you think about when you hear the word dildo? We sat down with Isabelle Deslauriers of Desirables to demystify what inspired her to create a porcelain dildo called the Dalia. Since the Dalia's creation in 2012, it's been garnering global recognition as one of the best luxury sex toys in the world.
What inspired you to start Desirables?
The first product I ever created for Désirables is the Dalia and it was the final project of my university course as an Industrial Designer in 2012! At the start of my studies, I went to a ‘’Tupperware’’ presentation but for sex toys, with a couple of friends. At the time, I was in a relationship where intimacy and connection were sorely missing and I thought I would find something to help us reconnect. Honestly, none of the toys that were showcased were aligned with my vision of erotism and intimacy, but I finally settled for a purple vibrating bullet in the shape of a dolphin. The unboxing experience was awful, it smelled like a new car and my (at the time) boyfriend simply refused to use it.
It was a very disappointing moment, but also a very transformative experience. I kept thinking throughout my time in university that there must have been a way to design better sex toys. So I started to read on the subject and discovered that it was (and still is) an industry that is not regulated at all. Manufacturers can pretty much put anything they want in their sex toys and pleasure products regardless of how intimate their use is going to be. More and more I felt like there was something I could do, so when my friends dared me to make a sex toy as my final project, I jumped on the occasion. My focus was: How to create a bridge between design, sexuality, and intimacy. And I have been working on Désirables ever since!
What makes porcelain a great material for a dildo?
I’m glad you ask because porcelain has A LOT of benefits - besides looking gorgeous and luxurious! First of all, it's 100% body-safe and toxic-free because of the way porcelain ‘’comes into being’’. For our dildos, we use the same technique as used in Limoges’ porcelain, which is the highest quality you can get in terms of clay/porcelain. The clay is cooked (twice) in an oven at 1400०C ensuring complete vitrification of the clay when it becomes porcelain. This means porcelain is non-porous, but also very easy to clean. You can even sterilize it in the oven! Whatsmore, we do not apply a glaze over our classic dildos. So the texture is mate and provides a good grip even if you use lube.
Porcelain is also great for temperature play, either hot or cold, it is compatible with every type of lubricant and it is waterproof. It is also a naturally hypoallergenic material, so you don’t have to worry about using it internally or disrupting the delicate ph balance of your vagina.
We are also lucky to have talented local ceramists to create our products in Montreal. This means we can be present throughout the entire process and can inspect them one by one to ensure that everything we send out to our clients is always up to our high standards!
And contrary to what some people may think, porcelain is very resistant in use - it has a high mechanical strength! So you won’t break it while using it. The only thing it is sensitive to are shocks (physical or thermal). That’s why we offer a 5-year warranty, because we know accidents happen. The Dalia is also very lightweight, because of its creation process, so your hand won’t get tired as quickly as with other toys. This brings us to our final benefit: it is extremely durable! It won’t degrade over time or with use and can last hundreds of years.
How is the Dalia different from a silicone dildo or vibrator?
I would say one of the major things is just visual appeal, porcelain has a very luxurious look and feel as well. But that’s a matter of personal taste. Also, as previously mentioned, porcelain is compatible with every type of lubricant compared to silicone. Plus porcelain won’t degrade over time which can happen with lower quality silicone.
But the real advantage of porcelain over vibrators or even silicone for a G Spot dildo is the firmness of the porcelain. Constant pressure is an essential part of a great G Spot stimulation, sadly silicone doesn’t provide the same kind of pressure and vibrations usually won’t do the trick for the G Spot.
When we created the Dalia, the goal was not for the person to reach orgasm in 1 minute! Which I believe is the goal with most vibrators, and it’s totally fine, but we are aiming for people to take it slowly, to discover their body and feel pleasure first and foremost. We are very much inspired by the concepts of mindful masturbation, slow sex, and sensate focus. For me, vibration carries a “performance issue” that puts the achievement of orgasm above the pleasure of sexual encounters.
What do you wish more people understood about dildos?
That it is a tool to enhance pleasure - use it for self-discovery and self-love! Use it solo or with a partner to switch things up!
The Dalia was created with the vagina in mind, so its shape and ‘’sturdiness’’ really allows you to stimulate your g-spot. Plus, there are no nerve endings on the g-spot, the key to stimulating it is pressure, not vibrations. Some of our customers are also using the Dalia to reach their A-spot, so it’s great for cervical orgasms too. And if you enjoy vibrations, porcelain is a great conductor. So you could use it to masturbate internally and apply a vibrator on it to feel the vibrations.
I think one of the main things we would like people to understand is that vibrations (or suction in the case of clitoral stimulation) isn’t (and shouldn’t) be everything. Taking your time for your pleasure sessions should be a habit and not an exception. That’s what's great about dildos, you (or your partner) need to actively participate in your pleasure.
We love that your products are handmade in Montreal, Canada (we’re based in Canada too!) What do you hope for the future of the sexual wellness space in our country?
That’s a great question. I wish our government and non-profits were more open about sexual wellness and could discern the difference between non-ethical sex related business and sexual wellness and sex education. In the end, when wellness-based businesses are trying to be born and survive, most institutions in place are simply unable or unwilling to help us because of “ethic” clauses.
From my point of view, it’s a bit hypocritical, 99% of the population have a sexuality. So, why not help the companies, educators, and influencers who are trying to help in the education of all generations on how to better live their sexuality rather than banning and shaming them?
Montréal is a “well-known” sexual city but weirdly enough, the sexual wellness scene is very, very small here. Compared to the sexualization of female bodies at the F1 parties and the giants of porn who have their headquarters here, the sexual wellness community seems to be almost invisible. Thanks to recent initiatives like Club Sexu and other artistic projects we are more and more hopeful. I think the sexual wellness scene is expanding as well across Canada (in Toronto, Vancouver, or even in Halifax) and I couldn’t be happier to discover kindred spirit across my country.
I think my craziest wish would be that social platforms finally understood the difference between education, body positivity, and plain porn. Because if we can see ads about Viagra online, why can’t we see anything about female pleasure, trans pleasure, elder pleasure, or even pleasure for people living with disabilities?