31 January 2015

Blush Novelties 'Ai' and 'Cici'

Last month I was contacted by Blush Novelties who asked if I would review a couple of their products, so I had good root through their website and found this rather lovely-looking pair of silicone dildos, the Ai and the Cici.

I've had plenty of time to thoroughly test them out now, so it's time for the review; check it out below!

It's not often that I review two toys at once, but thought I'd make an exception for this pair as they have quite a lot in common. Rather than review one now and another in a week's time, and end up sounding rather repetitious, instead you get two for one as I go in depth on the Ai and Cici. These are the two toys that really caught my eye when browsing through Blush's quite extensive catalogue, the size of which did surprise me a little as I don't think I've ever seen the brand being sold in the UK, but I'm always eager to try something new.

The dildos are made from 100% silicone and have a lovely velvety finish to the surface, meaning they feel delightfully soft when you run your hands over them. The silicone itself is a little on the firm side, with not a whole lot of give to it when squeezed, but because nether dildo is especially thick they still bend and flex about with relative ease. As they're silicone the dildos are completely odourless, non-toxic, and body-safe, and they can also be sterilised by boiling or dipping in a mild bleach solution, and then shared with a partner, so it really is the best material to have for an insertable toy.

The construction quality of the dildos is very high, with not a fault to be seen on either. There is a visible mould-line running around the entire length of each, but it isn't raised or rough, and blends almost undetectably into the velvety surface of the toys.

Rather like a comedy double-act the Ai is the taller and thinner of the pair, while the Cici is shorter and moderately thicker. The Ai has a functional length of 6 1/4", plus another 3/8" for the base, and a maximum circumference of 3 1/2". The Cici is harder to measure accurately due to the curvature of the shaft, but it has around 5 1/4" of usable length, and a maximum circumference of 4 1/4". Both dildos are on the smaller end of the scale and well suited to beginners.

Probably the first thing that struck me about the dildos was how similar the designs are to two of Tantus's products, the Charmer and the Acute respectively, and I've made a couple of side by side images to demonstrate this. The Ai has a very gentle curve to the shaft, and the tip of it is quite narrow and tapered, almost coming to a point. On the interior side of the curve it has this big stepped texture with 4 prominent ridges, which rather reminds me of a linear ratchet mechanism. The Cici on the other hand has a much more strongly curved shaft, and the tip is rather bulbous giving a slightly more phallic design. The shaft is largely smooth, though there are some very subtle ridges that can be felt by running a finger along it. Both dildos have nice broad bases which are sturdy and compatible with an O-ring harness. The only difference between the two is that the base of the Ai allows it to be stood upright unaided, whereas the Cici topples over under its own weight due to the extreme curve.

The dildos are available in a choice of three colours, turquoise, purple, or pink, with the turquoise being by far my favourite as it's a little unusual, though having said that I recently received two toys that I'll be reviewing in the coming weeks which feature a very similar shade. The purple is also quite a nice hue, having a Cadbury's Dairy Milk wrapper feel about it.

Using the Ai:
Left: Charmer | Right: Ai
The Ai is very easy to insert thanks to its narrow tapered tip, and with a little dab of water-based lube it'll gently slip through the sphincter. Despite the apparent prominence of the ridges any sensation of bumps during insertion is very subtle, and in fact even when you begin to draw the dildo out again slowly you only really feel them to a significant degree when you clench the sphincter firmly around the toy. With the dildo inserted as far as you can manage you want to be certain not to push any further as I found that the firmness and pointedness of the tip made for a slightly uncomfortable jabbing sensation when it hit the top of the rectum. In my case I reached the peak of the fourth ridge before I could go no further, about an inch shy of reaching the base. In terms of thrusting I found the Ai to be a little lacklustre. It slides in and out of the body well enough, completely comfortably thanks to the velvety finish of the shaft, but what I really look for is stimulation and that appeared to be absent. As well as those ridges barely being able to be felt by the sphincter, even at high thrusting speeds, they managed to have negligible effect on my prostate. I was hoping for something along the lines of the Tantus Echo, but with barely anything being registered I found myself feeling bored with toy rather quickly. The most successful position I found was to squat over the dildo and come down on it at an angle, and with speed, but even then I just couldn't get enough stimulation to make it worth my time.

Using the Cici:
Left: Acute | Right: Cici
The Cici is another relatively easy toy to insert, and though not as slender or tapered as the Ai, a warm-up toy will be unnecessary for most people with a moderate degree of prior experience, provided they don't rush. As the bulbous head passes into the body a slight bump can be felt in the muscle, but it's not as prominent as that 'pop' that comes with other toys. There are two alternative ways to insert the dildo: either with the curve going upwards towards the prostate, or downwards towards the spine. With it in the upwards position it can be a little more difficult to get the whole thing inserted as it will tend to stop and need a little wiggling or angling to help it find its path. With it the other way around it finds its way much more easily and will slip in all the way to the base in a matter of seconds. The curve of the shaft does rather limit how you can use the dildo, as you can't really squat over it and ride it, as if you move into this position with the dildo already inserted you'll find that the base doesn't sit flat against the floor, being instead at an angle, making it rather awkward to attempt. As such it's a case of needing to thrust manually with the dildo from a reclined position of your choosing. Again as with the Ai I found the thrusting to be underwhelming. The thicker shaft made it feel more filling, but no matter which way I had it orientated it did nothing for my prostate. With it curved upwards the bulbous head prodded around against the vicinity of the prostate, but not in a stimulating or pleasurable fashion, and with it curved downwards thrusting was much more fluid, but the back of the shaft seemed to ignore the prostate even more, failing to replicate that experience I had with the curve of the Tantus Adam.

So where indeed does this leave us with these two toys? Well they're very attractive, they're well made, they use safe materials, and all around they're good quality products. The downside - and it's a big one - is that I just don't find them stimulating. They leave me unexcited, uninspired, and frankly rather bored, and unfortunately that's a failing for a sex toy. They just don't work for me and my body, and that's not to say that they won't work for any other guys, but I'm struggling to think of any categories of people that I'd suggest them to as a good option. I'm appreciative to Blush for sending the toys over, but unfortunately they won't be making it onto my list of things I'd recommend to someone with a prostate.

The Ai and the Cici are both available from SheVibe.

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