Sustainability is about more than recycling, going vegan or choosing eco-friendly brands. It’s about creating an enduring relationship with products and challenging the wasteful culture of click-to-buy. If we know how our products are made, this can help us to appreciate their value.
So what if you could make your own sex toy? Well… now you can! We sat down with Alice Stewart of Touchy Feely Tech. We chatted about sustainability, what eco sex means to her and how her products can enhance the user’s relationship with their product and their own sexuality.
Touchy Feely Tech
What is Touchy Feely Tech?
We are a creative technology studio, with an interest in electronic hardware, art and education. Our first project is a DIY Vibrator kit that teaches the user about electronics and coding and results in a customised, fully-functional and safe to use product.
Why customize your own vibrator? Who can benefit from this?
Buying a vibrator can often be a disappointing process, because you have no idea what it really looks or feels before it arrives. It’s basically a gamble, and this can be a barrier for a lot of people that ends in them not wanting to explore the use of vibrators any further. Being able to customise your own helps you understand what shape, size and vibration type you actually like before you make the decision. If you make your own in a group workshop setting, it reminds us of how we all have different tastes and preferences, which is a positive thing to reinforce.
What makes your practice sustainable?
We have designed our kits so that there is minimal waste involved. Having a modular-style electronics and casing system means that people can swap parts out rather than purchase a brand new vibrator. We’re keen to use biodegradable materials, and want to embed the idea that making your own stuff is sustainable into everything we do.
How might DIY vibrators change/enhance the user’s relationship to masturbation?
After running a number of workshops, it’s amazing to see how in every session the stigma and taboo of owning a vibrator dissolves completely. We hope that this would remove some of the shame that people still associate with masturbation. It’s an empowering thing to build your own stuff and understand how things are made, and we are committed to embedding this sentiment into the product’s life.
Do you see your product as educational?
What does “eco sex” mean to you?
Being ecologically aware in sex and sexuality, ensuring that we practice sustainable habits in both buying and using sex-oriented products, and overall being mindful of the planet in everything we do.
STIs can be transmitted through sharing sex toys! You can order a free STI test kit from SH:24 here.