A couple of weeks ago Em over at SexToys.co.uk got in touch with me and asked if I fancied reviewing anything for them. They're one of my favourite retailers, with whom I've worked a lot in the past (and even received their coveted Seal of Approval), so of course I said yes and went off on a hunt through their "what's new" section to find the perfect item.
I realised that I hadn't reviewed anything of the vibrating variety recently, so when I saw the Minna Life Limon I knew that it would be just the ticket. As always you can find out what I thought below.
I first became aware of Minna back in 2013 when they launched a crowd-funding campaign for the Limon - which at that time was a rather novel thing to do - and though everyone and his sister seems to have jumped on the crowd-funded sex toy bandwagon since, this is actually the first one I've got my hands on. I remember watching the pitch video initially and being intrigued by its claims, because in the world of sex toys innovation can be incredibly hit and miss, and yet here was a little start-up offering to bring something new. Now nearly two years down the line I'm relishing the opportunity to see if it really does live up to the hype.
With the arrival of the Limon the question is what do you get for your money, and if you've spotted the image at the top of the review then that should give a pretty good idea right off the bat. I was seriously impressed by the packaging for the product when I first saw it, because it all comes bundled up in this lovely little cardboard tube, complete with tasteful branding, and it's clear that effort has been put into the design. It looks classy, it looks elegant, and not at all cheap, and I love this approach that treats vibrators no differently from any other electronic gadget. Inside you find the Limon itself, a USB charging cradle for it, a small cloth storage pouch, and a multi-language instruction manual. The storage pouch is an especially nice touch in my eye, as it helps keep the dust at bay when you toss it back into your toy drawer after use.
The Limon is available in two different colours, and despite it being a translation of "lemon" neither of them has anything citrussy about them. There's a predictable pink, and then an absolutely delightful shade of teal that I chose for myself. It is a slight shame that there's no yellow Limon just to complete the theme, but the teal is so lovely that it makes for more than adequate consolation.
The Limon itself is designed as a pocket-sized external-use vibrator, which doesn't immediately jump out as being especially innovative, even with its cute lemon-shaped silicone shell. You have to scratch below the surface though to find out the secrets that the Limon holds, because it's the technology inside it and the way it's operated, that makes it stand out from the crowd. Unlike traditional vibrators the Limon doesn't come pre-programmed with a selection of different speeds and patterns, all available to be cycled through at the touch of a button. The Limon has none of that, and in fact when you press its singular button on the front that merely turns it on and greets you with a glowing green light. What makes the Limon unique is that it's pressure sensitive, and this is how it's controlled. Two of the sides of the Limon are soft and squishy, and when you squeeze them the Limon starts to vibrate. The harder you squeeze, the stronger the vibrations feel, and this gives you an amazingly direct control over the vibrator and opens up new possibilities. Not only can you precisely adjust the strength of the vibrations, but you can also make your own patterns by rhythmically squeezing the toy, and it's incredibly effective and simple to use. Instead of having to cycle through settings like you do with other toys, you can get exactly what you want, right when you want it, all in real time, and it puts you firmly in control. Another great feature is that it actually allows you to record your own patterns onto its memory and play them back to yourself, so you can develop the perfect rhythm to get you off, and then just sit back and enjoy it without manually inputting it into the toy each time.
The vibrations produced by the toy are of quite a deep rumbly variety, especially when compared to something like the Jimmyjane Form 2 which feels almost buzzy in comparison. What's interesting about the vibrations is that while strong they have a softer more mellow nature to them, rather than that intensity you feel from the surface of others such as both the We-Vibe Tango and the Form 2. The vibrations feel as though they're emanating from deeper within the toy, and then radiating out from the teat of the Limon, rather than being produced right in that spot, which gives a slightly different 'colour' to how they feel.
When you apply the Limon to the penis the vibrations are instantly stimulating and penetrate effectively into the shaft. At first this "softer" feeling vibration appeared a little different to what I'm used to, but in direct comparisons with other toys I found it matched their power, but that I actually preferred how the vibrations felt against the sensitive skin. What's great about the method of control is that it allows you to vary the rhythm of the pattern, just how you would vary the rhythm of thrusting during sex. You can start off just teasing yourself with the toy, moving the smooth silicone surface all over the glans with just a low vibration dancing around, but when you're ready to climax you can put the tip of the Limon up against the frenulum and gradually increase from a slow mild pattern of vibrations, to a fast sequence of strong bursts of vibrations, and the ensuing orgasm does not disappoint.
There are a couple of minor downsides to the controls. The first is that when you squeeze the toy some of the vibrations get absorbed into your fingers, so in order to operate it you actually diminish some of the power. This can easily be fixed by saving your favourite pattern into the toy so you needn't hold it so firmly. The second is with regard to anticipation; because your brain knows precisely when you're about to make the vibrations stronger it comes as no surprise to the body when it feels it, in the way that it does with a pre-set toy, and this lessens the impact somewhat. Again you can get around this by programming in a pattern, but actually this is why I think the Limon would make a fantastic couples toy, because you can take all that precise control and use it to deliver tailored pleasure to someone else.
The whole quality and construction of the Limon is superb too, and it's made with body-safe silicone and has no nasty raised mould-lines sticking out where they shouldn't be. It has an inbuilt power indicator which tells you how much charge the battery has left. When you press the power button if it vibrates thrice it means the battery is great, twice it's half full, and once then you should think about charging it. In my experience though the battery life lasts a long time, but when it does need a top up it's a simple as popping it onto the magnetic cradle, and the benefit of this system is that you get a fully waterproof toy too.
I have to say that I really have been thoroughly impressed by the Minna Life Limon, so hats off to the guys who designed it and followed through with their own self-belief enough to make and sell it. It's a lovely powerful rumbly little vibrator, which uses an ingenious control system which I just love. It's the ideal toy for single guys and gals, and especially couples of any persuasion. I'm not sure it'll replace my We-Vibe Tango in all applications, but lately it's been the one I've been most keen to reach for first. I would happily give this toy my recommendation.
You can pick one up right now from SexToys.co.uk