Sexcellent Ideas: Sunny Megatron and Ken Melvoin-Berg

The story below is taken from the October 2013 issue of AVN magazine, where we asked 10 sexperts to talk about future trends that they would like to see in the pleasure product industry. Each shared some interesting thoughts, and we'll be posting these individually over the next couple of weeks. Pictured here: two sexperts who are partners as well as colleagues: Sunny Megatron and Ken Melvoin-Berg.

Sunny Megatron
Sexuality educator, pleasure advocate and sex blogger.

I would like to see more how-to’s, suggested uses and basic education packaged with toys. For example, you can throw G-spot toys at someone until the cows come home, but that still doesn’t mean they will figure out where the G-spot is and know how to stimulate it.

Now that pleasure products are commonplace, more couples are eager to use them to explore new sexual territory together. Toys are no longer just for solo sessions. They are important tools that help us foster intimacy and playfulness with our partners. You’d be amazed at how many people get hung up on the basics—“How do I use this?” or “How do I creatively incorporate this into a sexual scenario?” I’d love to see sex toy companies help consumers more with knowledge and resources to complete the whole package.

I’m also happy manufacturers are making increasing numbers of intimate products from quality, body-safe, nonporous materials. I’d love to continue seeing stronger motors, durable mechanics and premium materials used like medical-grade silicone. Consumers are growing more savvy and demanding high quality. Although there has been a push for better products in recent years, cheaply constructed devices are still being thrown to the masses. The masses won’t tolerate that much longer.

Sure, I’d love sexual technology advance to the point where our every need is satisfied via mind reading, but we’re a long way off from that. For now, there are some great products already out there, we simply need to make sure consumers not only know they are available but are also well versed in how to get the most out of them.

Ken Melvoin-Berg
TV personality, author, editor, entrepreneur, sex educator and Fucksaw rabble-rouser.

What is the next big trend in sex toys for men? Sex toy development and speculation is an exciting job for people in the adult manufacturing industry. They don’t always hit the mark for what the public wants, because they may be too immersed in corporate culture to see the forest through the trees.

I was excited to share some of my feelings from a sex educator’s perspective. We usually have our finger on the pulse of what the community wants, and let’s be honest—we actually use these toys, a lot.

New materials are a great way to take what you have already done and make a brand-new product. We have seen stone, metal, glass, plastics and silicone make their debut in sex toys, but one of the best underused substances is ceramics. You can heat it up, cool it down and have the temperature be effective because it will stay a while. It also has the huge advantage of being hypoallergenic. It’s cheap, easy to make, and safe to play with. One great idea would be a ceramic teardrop cock ring that is hollow and can be filled up with hot or cold water.

A larger variety of toys for men is going to be the next big thing. Women have had their choice of multiple toys for so long, the market has reached a saturation point. Original adult toy development for men is really just beginning to blossom. Starter toys that will suck your cock, stroke your dong, play with your balls, restrict blood flow, tickle your prostate are just a few of the basic principles that have yet to be fully explored. Chad Braverman from Doc Johnson is doing this right. I got to talk to him about this very subject at ANME and was impressed by the steps he was taking to really tap into the market for men’s toys.

Reinvent the wheel—it might just be the next best seller. More toys for men like Fun Factory’s Cobra Libre needs to be developed. It is a concave vibrator for the head of your cock. It looks like a vacuum cleaner but has a bit of a learning curve to it, so I think a lot of guys might get frustrated using it. However, it is my go-to toy if I want to cum every time. It needs a redesign, though. Change the shape, make the controls easier (it tends to shut off or lower power at the worst times), and for the love of all that is holy make it easier to grip with one hand because I need the other hand for porn!

Feel free to borrow from the world of BDSM. Take something like nipple clamps or a Wartenberg pinwheel and put a new spin on them and remarket them for soccer dads in Iowa who may not be aware of the pleasure they can bring.

I can’t stress this enough: What to stay away from can be just as important as what to make.

• Stop using celebrity endorsements for sex products. Middle America doesn’t need or want to see someone who doesn’t look like them endorse a sexual product when it is glaringly obvious the celebrity gets more ass than a toilet without the use of said product.

• Don’t use plastics. They are a cornerstone of the industry, but they are overdone and can be unhealthy for the body.

• No more oral lotions, lubes or flavor enhancers for genitals. If your genitals need to taste like kiwi-strawberry to be licked, take a bath.

• Stay away from stuff with batteries. It’s 2013; make it rechargeable with a USB or mini USB port. If you want to be really clever, install a small memory stick that you can add your favorite porn on.

• If you absolutely need to make something to affect the temperature of your genitals, don’t make it so hot or so cold it burns your junk.

• Keep clear of dildonics. When Ted Johnson coined the term dildonics in the 1980s, I’m sure he thought we would all have toys that attached remotely or directly to our computers. The facts are, dildonics aren’t practical. People don’t have the time or patience to deal with setting up a remote sexual liaison via computer when they can cum faster, more privately, and more easily with something low tech like a dildo.

More ergonomic designs would be nice. Pay attention to the curves that all men have in common and make those curves work towards the erogenous zones. The teardrop cock ring is a great example of this. It restricts blood flow, increases erection strength, and gives an external prostate massage all at once.

Pay attention to motor placement in toys. We need more motors with stronger vibrations in a number of places with various speeds and settings. The recent trend of two or more motors works and will only get better.

Your average consumer is smart, but cheap. They want to buy a product that works well, is easy to use, cleans up nicely, and does not need a manual to accompany it. People will buy the product that is beta tested by a variety of people of different ages, sexual preferences, and body styles. Keep prices low, quality high and they will cum.

Check back on tomorrow to hear from sex and relationship expert Reid Mihalko.

To see the digital edition of the issue, click here.