Unleashed Play Sets by CalExotics

Give yourself over to the thrilling world of submission and dominance with the Unleashed Play Sets by CalExotics.

Each set comes complete with everything you need to explore your fantasies:

  • Surrender is an 8 piece everything needed to give yourself over to pleasure and your lover’s every erotic whim.
  • Adventure is a 7 piece set includes everything needed to tease the lines between pleasure and pain.

Both include a hanging travel and storage bag trimmed in coordinating animal print fabric with a place for everything, extra pocket, and a satin ribbon closure.

 

Unleashed Surrender Set Complete Restraint Kit 

Give yourself over to the thrilling world of submission and dominance with the Unleashed Surrender Set.

This travel-ready set includes everything needed to give yourself over to pleasure and your lover’s every erotic whim. This 8-piece kink kit includes a set of 2 fabric ties, double padded eye mask, 2 sets of fully adjustable universal cuffs, collapsible spreader bar, breathable ball gag and roll up travel case with hook.

No matter how you like to bind, a set of sensual fabric ties and two sets of totally adjustable cuffs can be used on ankles or wrists for versatile restraint play.

Dive deep into sensuous pleasure with the double-layer eye mask and the plush cuffs keep you comfortable, no matter how much you squirm. With a plush interior and wild leopard exterior, even the most experienced or freshest fetishist can indulge in sensational pleasure play with this intense breathable gag.

Leave yourself wide open to sensational pleasure with the fully adjustable collapsible spreader bar. No matter how much you squirm, two sets of fully adjustable cuffs can be used to bind and restrain into almost any position. From hot honeymoons to nightly adventures, the discreet roll up travel case is sure to hold onto all your dirty secrets between sessions.

Features:

  • 8 piece bondage set
  • Leopard print fabric
  • Roll up travel and storage bag with hanger top and satin ties included
  • 1 Year warranty provided by CalExotics

Set includes:

  • Set of 2 sensual fabric ties
  • Double-padded eye mask
  • 2 sets of totally adjustable, universal cuffs with Velcro style closures
  • Collapsible spreader bar with adjustable Velcro ankle and wrist cuffs
  • Breathable ball gag with adjustable buckle closure
  • Roll up travel case

 

Unleashed Adventure Set Complete Sensory Play Kit

Give yourself over to the thrilling world of submission and dominance with the Unleashed Adventure Set.

This travel-ready set includes everything needed to tease the lines between pleasure and pain. The designer 7-piece kit includes a faux leather flogger, sturdy dual-sided paddle, fluffy feather tickler, padded collar, chain leash, over the door restraint system and roll up travel case with hook.

Lose yourself to pleasure with the versatile cuffs with adjustable Velcro style enclosure, wrap around wrists or ankles for sensual submission. Tease as you build up the anticipation with the flirty feather tickler. Wrap the adjustable collar around your lover, clip on the durable chain leash and lead them towards pure pleasure as you take command. From every teasing tickle down their body to stinging slap, the flogger with tickling tassels is sure to thrill. From rewards to punishment, the sturdy dual sided paddle is made to plant powerful smacks.

No matter how much you squirm, the over the door restraint system with adjustable straps will hold you just right when paired with the adjustable cuffs. From hot honeymoons to nightly adventures, the discreet roll up travel case is sure to hold onto all your dirty secrets between session.

Features:

  • 7 Piece bondage and sensory play set
  • Leopard print fabric
  • Roll up travel and storage bag with hanger top and satin ties included
  • 1 Year warranty provided by CalExotics

Set includes:

  • Flogger with soft teasing tassels
  • Dual sided, sturdy paddle
  • Teasing feather tickler
  • Totally adjustable cuffs with Velcro style closures for use on wrists or ankles
  • Dual sided collar with universal buckle closure and leash with sturdy chain
  • Over the door restraint system with adjustable strap and bar hook for secure over the door placement
  • Roll up travel case

Wonder Vibes Poseable Dual Density Liquid Silicone Vibrators by XR Brands

The gold standard of pleasure!

Experience the luxurious sensation of liquid silicone: the velvety outer texture of traditional silicone with a softer plush inner density. Gold ABS accents add a decadent appeal.

Each vibrator in the line contains a posable spine that allows the user to contour the insertable portion to their ideal shape for maximum comfort and satisfaction. These rechargeable vibes are powerful and ready to please with thrilling modes of vibration!

Available in 3 styles:

  • The Bendable Silicone Vibe offers a textured shaft and bulbous head
  • The Bendable Silicone Rabbit Vibe adds on a rabbit stimulator
  • The Bendable Silicone Clit Stimulating Vibe has a triple flickering tongues in the stimulator

Prepare yourself for the gold standard of pleasure with Wonder Vibes!

 

Wonder Vibes 7X Bendable Silicone Vibe

Wonderful, bendy, squishy and textured for pleasure!

The Wonder Vibes 7X Bendable Silicone Vibe adds a little flexibility to your self-love session – the bendable design makes it easy to bend and pose this vibe to your preferred shape.

Experiment with a different curve to explore every corner of your insides, perfect for solo use and excellent for communicative partner play.

Play and please with the powerful vibration modes included with each Wonder Vibe – flip between 3 speeds and 4 patterns of buzzing bliss with the ergonomic, easy-to-reach controls on the base of the shaft. The IPX7 waterproof build makes playtime in the shower easy and hassle free! End your days with a hot shower and your new bendy friend and say goodbye to the weight of the day.

Made with ultra-plush, phthalate free body-safe silicone that is soft, squeezable and goes nicely with the flexible nature of this vibe. Rechargeable via included usb cable so you can play without worrying about batteries. Use with water based lubricants only, avoid use with silicone based lubes to prolong the life of your new Wonder Vibe.

The USB rechargeable Bendable Silicone Vibe is rated IPX7 waterproof for fun in & out of the water and easy cleanup.

Features:

  • Dual stimulator
  • Dual density liquid silicone
  • Bendable and poseable spine
  • Textured shaft
  • Bulbous head
  • 3 Speeds and 4 vibration patterns
  • Waterproof
  • USB rechargeable – charging cable included
  • 30 Day warranty provided by XR Brands
  • Silicone, ABS Plastic
  • 8.3” (5” insertable) x 1.3” at widest point

 

Wonder Vibes 7X Bendable Silicone Rabbit Vibe

The Rabbit Vibe with a twist!

Bend and conform the exciting Bendable Silicone Rabbit Vibrator however your like – find your preferred shape for peak personal pleasure and treat yourself to a buzzing, blended orgasm.

The powerful dual motors in the shaft and clitoral stimulator are sure to please and easy to control, so you can focus on finding that big O.

Stimulate your clitoris and your g-spot with powerful vibration settings – flip between 3 speeds and 4 patterns of buzzing bliss on both the shaft and rabbit stimulator with the ergonomic, easy-to-reach controls on the base of the shaft.

Made with ultra-plush phthalate free body-safe silicone that is soft, squeezable and goes nicely with the flexible nature of this vibe. Rechargeable via included USB cable so you can play without worrying about batteries. Use with water-based lubricants only, avoid use with silicone based lubes to prolong the life of your new Wonder Vibe.

The USB rechargeable Bendable Silicone Rabbit Vibrator is rated IPX7 waterproof for fun in & out of the water and easy cleanup.

Features:

  • Dual stimulator
  • Dual density liquid silicone
  • Bendable and poseable spine
  • Textured shaft
  • Bulbous head
  • Rabbit external stimulator
  • 3 Speeds and 4 vibration patterns
  • Waterproof
  • USB rechargeable – charging cable included
  • 30 Day warranty provided by XR Brands
  • Silicone, ABS Plastic
  • 8.3” (5.5” insertable) x 1.3” at widest point

 

Wonder Vibes 7X Bendable Silicone Clit Stimulating Vibe

Curve the Wonder Vibes 7X Bendable Silicone Clit Stimulating Vibe however you like – position the shaft to your preferred shape for maximum internal pleasure and indulge yourself with the powerful clitoral stimulator for the intense blended orgasm you deserve!

Stimulate your clitoris and your g-spot with the powerful vibration settings – flip between 3 speeds and 4 patterns of buzzing bliss with the ergonomic, easy-to-reach controls on the base of the shaft to choose the best way to play with your insides and your outsides.

Made with ultra-plush phthalate free, body safe silicone that is soft, squeezable and goes nicely with the flexible nature of this vibe. Rechargeable via included USB cable so you can play without worrying about batteries. Use with water based lubricants only, avoid use with silicone based lubes to prolong the life of your new Wonder Vibe.

The USB rechargeable Bendable Silicone Clit Stimulating Vibe is rated IPX7 waterproof for fun in & out of the water and easy cleanup.

Features:

  • Dual stimulator
  • Dual density liquid silicone
  • Bendable and poseable spine
  • Textured shaft
  • Bulbous head
  • Triple tongue external stimulator
  • 3 Speeds and 4 vibration patterns
  • Waterproof
  • USB rechargeable – charging cable included
  • 30 Day warranty provided by XR Brands
  • Silicone, ABS Plastic
  • 8.3” (5.5” insertable) x 1.3” at widest point

How to Boost Your Adult Retail Knowledge With Online Resources

In business, knowledge is key. The more you know, the more you can expand, increase your sales and push your business in the best direction to protect its future. We learn more about the industry each day and build up a great sense of understanding as our knowledge banks become full.

Whether it’s knowledge of brands, how products work, tips and techniques for getting the best out of your sex toys or sales predictions of what’s hot and what’s not, I honestly think I know everything about everything within our industry. But almost every day, I’m learning something new, shattering this vein theory of mine. I’m so pleased I’m always learning, because if you master a sector of the market, where do you go from there? But I digress.

Anyway, take this hypothetical scenario: You’re new to the adult pleasure products market and you’ve always wanted to open up your own store. It’s been a life-long passion of yours and it’s finally happening! You set up your website and design your branding and you’re thrilled and raring to go! But you’re suddenly met with the vast wall of pleasure products that forms the basis of the industry. You’re bombarded with bondage gear. Drowning in dildos. Showered in sex toys. Suddenly the task becomes overwhelming! Should it really be this hard?

In our industry, we’re blessed with a market that isn’t dominated by just one or two brands. We have a plethora of products that we can choose from, ranging from the sexy and sensual to full-on fetish. For those just starting out, it can be incredibly daunting and a little intimidating in some cases. With very little knowledge of these products or the industry as a whole, those new to the industry can feel a little naive. So, where is the best place to build their knowledge and help to ease them in?

Here are some great places to learn more about the adult industry (for both new and experienced industry folk!)

Facebook

Ok, if you’re not on Facebook (why not?), get on Facebook! You’ll probably not only need a social media presence for your new company, but you’ll need to network with others in the industry who can help and support new businesses. There are a number of private groups whose sole purpose is to help each other, generate business and advertise, and demonstrate new products and brands. It’s a really useful resource to stay up-to-date with the latest news in the industry and you can gain a great deal of useful knowledge and contacts from these groups.

Adult Industry Media

There are adult industry magazines and media companies (e.g. XBIZ) who share news, stories and product information and press releases. Being subscribed to at least one of these media companies is pretty essential to keep you on top of things in the adult industry and having that magazine pop through the letterbox every now and again can inspire you, and help make those important decisions (like “what brands should I buy?”) easier. Check your locale’s main source and get yourself signed up.

The Human Touch

It’s important to make connections with other people. Whether you know someone within the industry already or you’ve just added them to Facebook, chat with them and find out about what they do. Most people are happy to help and share their knowledge with those lacking in it and you may even hear some news from a sales rep or brand before it’s officially announced …

Emails and phone calls are a great way of communication, so make sure you use them!

Social/Networking Events

Who doesn’t love a good industry party? (And in our industry, things can get pretty wild!) As above, show yourself around and network with others face-to-face. Explain your business and what your future plans are. Talk with brand ambassadors, suck up all the knowledge you can and even make business deals, all while sipping a cocktail in your best formalware. And then jump on the mechanical bull, try your hand at dildo darts and wake up not remembering any of it. Surreal!

Google Is Your Friend

Please, please, please use the internet! I don’t feel I should have to say this these days, but I fear that some still don’t do their own research and then base things like buying decisions on what a sales rep said. Yes, it may be their bestseller, but it’s their bestseller! It doesn’t mean it will be your bestseller! Does it fit your customer base? Do you even like it? If not, it’s probably best to avoid. If you’re not sure, search for it online. Read reviews, experiences and blogs on the product. Research the demand for the product, the reputation of the brand and whether customers even like it.

Use the internet as an extension of your own mind. All the information is already in there, you just need to find it.

Experience and knowledge will grow in time. As I said earlier, I’m still learning almost every day, but the knowledge I’ve gained over the last decade has helped shape the future of my business and the direction I am moving in. You need to be passionate about the product you are selling, and with this passion comes a great thirst for knowledge. Soak it all up, no matter where you get the information from. Whether you store it in your mind, digitally or even on paper, you never know when it may become useful.

How to Boost Your Adult Retail Knowledge With Online Resources by Daniel Miller originally appeared in XBIZ

Wicked Sensual Care Toy Cleaners

Wicked Sensual Care is our February Vendor of the Month! In celebration, let’s review their Toy Cleaners.

Playtime can get dirty, but your toys should always stay clean.

Wicked Sensual Care antibacterial cleaners lets you clean all your favorite toys without worrying about lasting scents or potentially irritating ingredients.

Enhanced with lavender and olive leaf extracts, fragrance and paraben free, they’ll help keep your favorite toys safe, clean, and ready to go! Use every time it’s time to sanitize, freshen, and protect your intimate investments. A must have for every toy box.

WSC Toy Cleaners are:

  • Alcohol-Free
  • Triclosan-Free
  • Paraben-Free
  • Enhanced with Olive Leaf Extract
  • Safe for all toys
  • Vegan- No Animal by-products or testing

 

Foam ‘n Fresh Anti-Bacterial Foaming Toy Cleaner

Wicked Foam ‘n Fresh is a toy and body safe alternative to everyday soap and water. Anti-bacterial, triclosan, and alcohol-free, this super powered foam is enhanced with Olive Leaf, Thyme, and Lavender extracts, making it safe for all toy materials yet tough to germs.

 

Cleene Anti-Bacterial Spray Toy Cleaner

Keep your toys safe and your intimate areas healthy with Wicked Cleene Antibacterial Toy Cleaner.

Enhanced with natural lavender and Olive Leaf Extracts to boost anti-bacterial effectiveness, Fragrance-Free Cleene is convenient and easy to use – just spray, wait a minute, wipe, and rinse.

LELO Enigma Dual-Action Sonic Massager

ENIGMA by LELO is a luxurious dual action sonic massager designed to titillate both the entire clitoris – its visible and invisible parts – and G-spot, for an orgasm so intense you’ll think you’ve left this planet.

Featuring the best of sonic waves on the exterior of the clitoris and gentle pulsations of the internal arm within your body, ENIGMA flutters in all the right places for an orgasm you won’t forget.

With an option for both kinds of stimulation, ENIGMA offers you access to both kinds of climax. It’s made for the explorers ready to dive into the pleasures that are yet to be discovered.

Get to Know ENIGMA

  1. Sensonic Technology – Without making direct contact, sonic waves offer clitoral stimulation for a deeper but gentler sensation.
  2. Double Arousal – Simultaneously titillate the clitoris – its visible and invisible parts – and the vagina.
  3. Ergonomic Internal Stimulator – Fully flexible internal arm with ultra-powerful vibrations that offers stimulation of the G-spot.

Featuring SenSonic technology that resonates deep within your body while simultaneously stimulating the clitoris, an all-encompassing orgasm keeps washing over you time and time again.

Without making direct contact, ENIGMA sonic waves offer clitoral stimulation for sensual pleasure. The silicone has been engineered to absorb sonic waves and transmit them back to your clitoris for a deeper but gentler sensation. The inner part vibrates in sync with the sonic waves, stimulating your G-spot.

Features:

  • Double the Pleasure – dual stimulator with sonic wave stimulator
  • Sculpted For Your Pleasure – flexible to fit your body like a glove
  • 8 Pleasure Settings – from a teasing murmur to a satisfying pulse
  • Whisper Quiet – discreet pleasure, anywhere
  • 100% Waterproof – perfect for the bath and shower
  • Rechargeable – more power, less fuss
  • Extra-Soft Silicone – ultra-smooth premium silicone that’s extra soft to the touch
  • Protection – 1-Year warranty and 10-year quality guarantee provided by LELO

In the Box:

  • ENIGMA
  • USB-Charging Cord
  • Satin Storage Pouch
  • Warranty Registration Card
  • Detailed Instruction Manual

Silicone an ABS

7.3” (5.5” insertable) x 3.9” x 1.9”

ZALO Legend Series Bess 5-in-1 Stimulator

Designed in Paris, the ZALO Legend Series Bess 5-in-1 Stimulator is named after Bastet, the Egyptian Goddess of the home, domesticity, women’s secrets, cats, fertility, and childbirth. She protected the home from evil spirits and disease, especially diseases associated with women.

Get to know Bess:

  • DirectPower technology – Straight point-to-point stimulations on the sensitive points.
  • Double tungsten motors – Double ultra-powerful stimulation of both clitoris and G-spot.
  • Powerful, whisper quiet vibrations – Unparalleled in design, the ultra-high power, whisper quiet operation outlasts many, leaving you with a truly satisfying experience.
  • Premium body-safe silicone – Dow Corning food-level silicone meeting with FDA requirements. Exclusive Softek surface coating.
  • USB magnetic charging – Built-in Lithium-ion battery with capacity of 530mAh which can be fully charged in 2 hours and provide about 2-3 hours of continuous pleasure.
  • Waterproof – Waterproof grade IPX4. The product is protected against splashing of water, no matter the direction.

Bess offers multiple uses and sensations due to the double-ended design and via the included interchangeable attachments:

  • Use the insertable handle with its slight curve as a traditional vibrator
  • One the other end, use the slim stem with its rounded tip for exquisite intense pinpoint stimulation
  • Add the Ball-shaped attachment for straight to the point clitoral stimulation
  • The Petal-shaped attachment with inner pleasure nodes creates teasing and tickling sensation to stimulate nipples or clitoris.
  • The Slim G-spot attachment is designed to stimulate the G-spot

Bess fits comfortably in your hand and offers the most accurate stimulation, thanks to the innovative DirectPower technology. It concentrates on the sensitive points, with motor revolutions up to 10,000 times per minute, to give the perfect orgasm experience.

The USB rechargeable Bess is rated IPX4 waterproof for easy care and cleanup.

Features:

  • 5-In-One Stimulator
  • Includes 3 attachments
  • Motors in both ends
  • 8 Vibration modes per motor
  • Easy 2-button interface
  • Quite with a max noise level <40dB
  • Rated IPX4 waterproof/ splashproof
  • USB rechargeable – charging cable included
  • 2 Hour charge provides up to 3 hours of playtime
  • Storage bag included
  • 1 Year warranty provided by ZALO USA
  • Dow Corning food-level silicone, SWAROVSKI crystal, ABS
  • 8.6″ overall length x 1.25” at widest point

In the Box:

  • Bess
  • Ball attachment
  • Petal attachment
  • G-spot attachment
  • Satin storage bag
  • USB charging cable
  • User’s manual
  • Warranty card

A Look At Choosing Toys

Choosing a toy, whether your first or 50th toy can be exceptionally overwhelming. There are so many choices, styles, colors, promises of the best orgasms of your life!

It can be extremely daunting to get a new toy, be so excited to open it up and then look at is as if it is a foreign object from outer space!

Things to ask yourself:

Do I want internal or external or both?  This can really help you narrow down. Given that most women need external stimulation, often something for your clitoris is great option. If however you love the feeling of fullness inside, then something internal may be more suitable. Keep in mind that many internal toys can be used to stimulate your clitoris as well!

Is it just for me or my partner as well? If it is just for you, then think about which areas you prefer. If however it is for use with your partner, then it is important to consider how they will feel. Some folks are comfortable with their partners using toys and actually find it erotic. However, for a first time, perhaps a more benign looking toy could be more fun? Try and chat to your partner about this. Many people love using toys on their partners so you may be surprised!

How obvious do I want my toy to be?

In our dream world, buying or talking or owning sex toys will be as common and well accepted as condoms. However, if you are concerned about your toy, feel free to choose a toy that is a little more subtle. Perhaps something like Aphrodite (link to Aphrodite product here)

Where are you using your toy?

This may sound strange, however if you want something to take away with you, or even out on a date with your partner then choosing a toy that allows you to do that may be helpful. All our toys are USB rechargeable so you can pop them in your bag and take them wherever your heart desires

Comfort

Last but certainly not least, how comfortable are you with your toy and do you love the way it looks and makes you feel. Our self image and consciousness is a completely internal feeling. Making sure you are excited and curious and ready for fun will always help make the process more enjoyable.

Choosing  Toys by Lara Pack originally appeared on Elixir Play

Opulence Luxury Wand Massager by CalExotics

Envelop your most intimate curves in luxurious pleasure with the Opulence Beautiful Body Wand.

The flawlessly flexible body wand features an Ultra-Soft body-forming silicone head, flexible neck and a high-powered Tungsten motor.

This hypoallergenic luxury massager is packed with six rumbly modes of vibration, pulsation, and escalation, with five speeds for each mode, giving you a completely custom experience.

The easy-touch control buttons on the velvety sensual-to-the-touch handle let you effortlessly flicker through each function of vibration, while increasing or decreasing the function intensity.

The USB rechargeable Opulence Luxury Massage Wand is waterproof for fun in & out of the water and easy cleanup.

Features:

  • Body forming massager with Ultra-Soft head and flexible neck
  • High-powered Tungsten motor
  • 6 functions of vibration, pulsation and escalation
  • 5 speeds for each function
  • State-of-the-art memory chip resumes on last function used
  • Security travel lock feature – hold for 3 seconds to turn on or off
  • Waterproof
  • USB rechargeable – charging cord included
  • 1.5 Hour charge provides up to 3 hours of playtime
  • 1 Year warranty provided by CalExotics
  • Silicone (head, neck) ABS with PU Cote (handle)
  • ABS with Metallic Plating (décor, buttons)
  • 2.5” x 1.75” (head)
  • 10.75” x 1.75” (overall)

The Thumper Rabbit by The Rabbit Company

The Thumper Rabbit isn’t just your normal Rabbit vibrator!

Featuring pulsating technology that targets your g-spot with intense direct stimulation, the Thumper Rabbit has a unique ridged texture that really “thumps.”

With a specifically shaped head for targeted g-spot stimulation, this Rabbit has three stimulating massage intensities in the head.

The stimulating rabbit ears and whiskers offer six functions of vibration, pulsation, and escalation. The extra long ears intensify the vibration, while the unique whiskers add thousands of micro-vibrations for the ultimate toe-curling experience.

Control all the action with the intuitive 5-button interface The Rabbit Company is known for.

The USB rechargeable Thumper Rabbit is waterproof for fun in & out of the water and easy cleanup.

Features:

  • Dual stimulator
  • Made of high-quality, body-safe, seamless silicone material
  • Two powerful, independently vibrating motors
  • Motors in the shaft and the clit-stimulating rabbit ears
  • 3 Stimulating massage intensities in the head
  • 6-Mode independent clitoral stimulator
  • One-touch control
  • Whisper quiet
  • Ergonomic shape
  • Waterproof
  • USB rechargeable – Charging cable included
  • Silicone and ABS
  • 8.1” overall

Opinion: Why Larry Flynt Was Crucial in the Fight for Free Expression

 
Almost all the Larry Flynt obituaries this past week emphasized his dual role as a successful businessman who built a massive, multi-sector adult industry empire from scratch, and also as a First Amendment warrior and ceaseless fighter in the seemingly endless struggle for the right to have open, free sexual expression in America.

The obits also pointed out — quite correctly — that Flynt’s reputation with the general public is tinted by the 1996 biopic “The People vs. Larry Flynt,” an award-winning, big Hollywood production that crystallized the image of the Hustler publisher as a colorful, profane anti-censorship warrior.

Though the film was very much an “authorized biography” — it derived much of its narrative from Flynt’s mid-1990s memoir “An Unseemly Man: My Life as Pornographer, Pundit, and Social Outcast” and its subject readily participated in its promotion — the Milos Forman-directed movie did simplify the multitude of Flynt’s legal battles against the forces of sexual repression and hypocrisy.

If the answer to the question “why was Larry Flynt so crucial in the fight for free expression?” is less tidy than what a Hollywood screenplay demands, it’s no less crucial to understand the unique impact of this headstrong Kentucky-by-way-of-Ohio troublemaker on American jurisprudence and cultural life.

The Real Deal

“He was the real deal. I’ve represented a lot of people who used the First Amendment to try to gain some sort of economic advantage. Flynt wasn’t that way at all and every case we filed on his behalf was because he was trying to move the needle,” Paul Cambria — his longtime attorney and free speech expert — told the Buffalo, N.Y. NPR affiliate as he reflected on his famous client’s passing.

When I interviewed Larry Flynt, then 77 years old, in his Beverly Hills office for the special January 2020 issue of XBIZ World — which turned out to be one of the last career-spanning interviews he would agree to do — he spoke about the core of his philosophy, which would end up putting him on a collision course against the professional moralists.

I asked him about what made Hustler — which he decided to start in 1974 as a third major adult magazine to compete against the already-established Playboy and Penthouse — unique.

“People were saying, ‘Well, how is Hustler gonna be different from Penthouse or Playboy?’” he explained, pointing out that, unlike him, the other publications were building sex into an aspirational lifestyle item to go along expensive stereos, martini recipes and Mercedes ads.

“I said, Hustler readers aren’t that way,” he continued, his original pitch readily flowing from his lips. “They like their sex straight and raw. No pretension. No wrapping our girls in sophisticated editorial content to give them ‘socially redeeming value.’”

And then he stated, “Sex in itself is socially redeeming.”

A Surprisingly Revolutionary Concept

That sex in itself does not need to make apologies for existing was in 1974 — and perhaps even more so, and surprisingly, still is in 2021 — a revolutionary concept for many.

The Ohio-based Hustler magazine took off within a year of its creation, becoming a booming business that prompted the Wall Street Journal to call it “not only the fastest-growing men’s magazine around, but one of the fastest-growing ever.”

As always, it was Hustler and Flynt’s financial success and growing mainstream acceptance that predictably attracted the attention of the religiously inspired moralists of the time. Flynt was unapologetic as a pornographer and adult club owner, and this rankled the guardians of morality.

Instead of hiding what he did or being discreet with his lifestyle, Flynt purchased a palatial home in the extremely conservative Columbus neighborhood of Bexley. He was taunting the establishment, and, in true Flynt style, he did not care.

Flynt’s first serious encounter with the War On Porn warriors occurred during the 1976 bicentennial, when Cincinnati prosecutors were prompted by a religious lobby called Citizens for Decency Through Law. The group was funded by a local Catholic businessman named Charles Keating.

Years later, in the early 1990s, Keating would be famously convicted on federal and state charges of fraud, racketeering and conspiracy for his role in the infamous Savings & Loan scandal, which provoked a financial crisis.

“Before he fucked the savings and loan industry,” Flynt wrote in his memoir a few years later, “Keating tried to prevent the portrayal of fucking in magazines.”

Becoming a First Amendment Warrior

Flynt fought Keating’s moralists hard from the get-go. He organized a grassroots group called Ohioans for a Free Press and held a rally. “We’re talking about the censorship of a magazine with three-million circulation, sold in 25 different countries with an estimated 15 million readers,” he harangued the crowd Kentucky-preacher style. “That’s 15 million voices that have a right to be heard. Now, either we have a free press or we don’t.”

“One of the greatest things that we have as American citizens, goddammit, is the right to be left alone,” Flynt sentenced, once again, establishing another unmovable principle on his lifelong Free Speech credo. “And me and my readers deserve that right.”

For the first of what would become many, many future media appearances, Flynt preached Free Speech and the glories of the First Amendment in an impromptu press conference in front of a throng of mainstream reporters wielding microphones and tape recorders.

Fighting corrupt, hypocritical Charles Keating in 1977 Cincinnati, the 34-year-old pornographer and businessman had encountered the second part of what would end up being his legacy: anti-censorship fighter.

Flynt lost many battles along the way, including that first one. He was a consumate gambler, but in this case the deck was stacked. Keating’s Citizens for Decency Through Law was operating in tandem with the prosecutor.

Summing up the case against Hustler, the prosecutor told the jury, “Sex is a beautiful thing — there’s no question about it — but only in the proper environment.”

Then, producing a piece of chalk out of his pocket, he drew a line across the courtroom floor and literally said “It’s time to draw the line against obscenity.”

Flynt was convicted by a stern judge named Morrisey. In the movie “The People vs. Larry Flynt,” he playfully agreed to play Morrisey, his first adverse judge, sentencing Woody Harrelson-as-Flynt to “11,000 in fines and 7-to-25, no bond!”

Ohio conservatives would continue to periodically pester Flynt and Hustler businesses for decades, always under moralistic excuses.

More Stacked Decks

The Ohio prosecution — and his unapologetic Free Speech antics — made Flynt a national figure. Talk shows and newspapers spoke of the case, even if the gatekeepers of morality ensured that Flynt could never be portrayed as a hero.

“I think Hustler is tawdry,” America’s most influential talk show host and nightly monologist Johnny Carson told the New Yorker in 1977, “but I also think the First Amendment means what it says, then it protects Flynt as much as anyone else.”

“As far as I’m concerned,” Carson continued, “people should be allowed to read and see whatever they like, provided it doesn’t injure others. If they want to read pornography until it comes out of their ears, the let them. But if I go on the ‘Tonight Show’ and defend Hustler, the viewers are going to tag me as that guy who’s into pornography. And that’s gonna hurt me as an entertainer, which is what I am.”

Another deck, this time of mainstream media and public opinion, was stacked against Flynt. Again, he didn’t care.

While he was fighting the Cincinnati conviction, Flynt very publicly and briefly converted — and the magazine — to evangelical Christianity. It was during this period that another obscenity case popped up in Lawrenceville, Georgia. Flynt had recently decided to challenge the Georgia morality police by opening a pop-up Hustler shop in Atlanta and selling the magazine himself.

It was during a subsequent 1978 Lawrenceville trial fighting local obscenity legislation that Flynt was shot by a white supremacist serial killer, who was reportedly indignant at Hustler’s depiction of an interracial couple.

Following the assassination attempt, the Lawrenceville judge declared a mistrial. Flynt, in unimaginable pain, returned to Georgia a year after the shooting to face off against his enemies.

In a 1984 interview he said that before the shooting he used to spend 20 percent of his time fucking with “them” (the Man, the establishment, the hypocrites, etc.) and 80 percent having sex.

“Now that I can’t fuck,” he continued, “I spend 100 percent of my time fucking with ‘them.’ See, I’m paralyzed from the waist down, but I ain’t paralyzed from the waist up.”

“That’s why I’m their worst nightmare come true,” he added.

Fighting Through Personal Chaos

After he moved his business operation to Los Angeles in 1979, comes a chaotic period that those who know the man’s story only through “The People vs. Larry Flynt” tend to find confusing. And that makes sense: between 1979 and 1983, the L.A.-based Flynt was going through the painful aftermath of the shooting, erratic medical treatments, mental health misdiagnoses and lifestyle-related turmoil.

Still, he managed to propel himself into the national conversation, in a series of legal appearances and stunts that culminated in his 1983 campaign for the Republican nomination for President, challenging one of his main targets of vitriol, Ronald Reagan.

Here’s where understanding his free speech legacy gets tricky for many people: the iconic images of Flynt in his trademark gold wheelchair wearing a diaper, or a T-shirt saying “Fuck This Court,” or American flags as apparel, or telling off the Supreme Court — all of which were recreated in the Hollywood biopic — don’t directly relate to Flynt’s work as a pornographer and as a publisher of sex images.

A lot of his legal troubles in the early 1980s — including the time he described the Supreme Court with an incredibly obscene quip — stem from a lawsuit over a lewd cartoon mocking Penthouse founder Bob Guccione and his then-girlfriend that Hustler published in 1976. Others escalated from Flynt’s involvement in a bizarre, convoluted incident surrounding the criminal drugs case against car manufacturer John DeLorean.

Both major Flynt-related cases cited in free speech jurisprudence do not involve his publishing of sex photos: they’re both about comedy material, as he understood it, aimed at personal foes.

Perhaps the most famous case stems from Flynt’s publication of a Mad Magazine-style parody of a Campari ad that implied Rev. Jerry Falwell — the nation’s most famous religious moralist and War on Porn crusader — had sex with his own mother.

The Falwell legal battle is what eventually enshrined Flynt as a First Amendment warrior and it also provided the rousing anti-censorship climax to “The People vs. Larry Flynt.”

It’s important to stress that Flynt was indeed being targeted by the forces of morality because he was an unrepentant pornographer. But his major battles were fought over the right to publish raunchy comedy bits he personally enjoyed — outhouse humor of the kind a pre-joining-the Navy teenage Flynt would have enjoyed with a rolled cigarette and a swig of moonshine.

The Right to Fight ‘a Religious Phony’

Falwell’s lawsuit came at a time when Flynt had been jailed over one of the many contempt of court incidents he had become embroiled in. His state of mind was dark, but he knew what he had to do: keep fighting.

“As far as I was concerned,” he later wrote about the period, “there was no justice, no God, no rationality left in the world. The government had done nothing to find or arrest to man who had shot me, the medical profession had done nothing to alleviate my pain and the legal profession was persecuting me for expressing my passionately held opinion that Jerry Falwell was a religious phony.”

During the Falwell trial, Flynt continued stating his beliefs. “Free expression is absolute,” he told the opposing counsel, “as long as no one is hurt.”

“I feel you have a right to say whatever you want to,” he continued.

“No matter how somebody’s feelings may be affected?” asked Falwell’s lawyer.

“Ah, you’re talking about matters of taste. What I’m trying to say is that no one should be imprisoned for what they say! If you don’t like what is being said on television, turn it off. If you don’t like what’s in Hustler, don’t buy it.”

The case went all the way up to the Supreme Court, where Flynt’s attorney Alan Isaacson (played in the movie by Edward Norton) delivered a lasting argument in favor of free expression in 1987.

“There is public interest in having Hustler express its view that what Jerry Falwell says, as the ad parody indicates — is B.S.”

“And,” he added, “Hustler has every right to say that somebody who’s out there campaigning against it, saying, ‘Don’t read [their] magazine and [they] are poison on the minds of America and don’t fornicate and don’t drink liquor’ — Hustler has every right to say that man is full of B.S.”

“And that is what this ad parody says,” Isaacman concluded. “It put him in a ridiculous setting. Instead of Jerry Falwell speaking from the television with a beatific look on his face and a Bible in his hand, Hustler is saying, ‘Let’s deflate this stuffed shirt; let’s bring him down to our level.'”

The Supreme Court published its decision in 1988 and they ruled unanimously in favor of Flynt and Hustler, with the Chief Justice writing, “The fact that society might find speech offensive is not a sufficient reason for suppressing it.”

‘Fuck You If You Can’t Take a Joke’

In his Hustler editorial celebrating the decision, Flynt wrote another summation of his Free Speech and free sexual expression philosophy:

I sincerely hope that this victory over censorship signals the swing of the pendulum back toward a more open society, where sexual communication can be conducted freely and with an accompanying honesty.

“hose traits have been sorely lacking in our initial approaches to the AIDS crisis and sex education, and their absence hinders people’s ability to make informed decisions about disease prevention, contraception and abortion.

Hustler has always promoted the concept that sexual openness requires sexual responsibility, just as maintaining our civil freedoms requires the responsible effort to vote, pay taxes and obey the laws and legal precedents of the land.

I am very happy to have helped ensure that one of those precedents guarantees every American the right to make fun, particularly of those people who try to hold themselves above the rest of the world.

The title of the editorial is “Fuck You If You Can’t Take a Joke.”

‘I Think We Gotta Be Free’

Nearing the end of his life and many tribulations, Flynt retained the boyish hellraiser glint in his eye that one can see in countless pictures from throughout his more than five decades in the limelight.

Back in December 2019, I asked Flynt if he considered himself idealistic about the prospects of holding power to scrutiny and fighting the good fight against the self-appointed moralists and hypocrites.

“This country is pretty corrupt…” he told me, before trailing off into one of his elder statesmanlike reflective moods, followed by a few seconds of silence.

“This country is pretty corrupt,” he then repeated, now with more intent. And then he fixed his probing eyes on me, chuckling, “I guess at heart, I’m an anarchist.”

Later, when I asked him about what in his opinion drove the War on Porn moralists that continue fighting against sexual expression — his old enemies from Morality in Media have rebranded as NCOSE (National Center on Sexual Exploitation) and are funding most major attempts to restrict access to porn — Flynt offered a wise summation that reflected a lifetime of fighting the good fight.

“I think we gotta be free,” he said. “We can’t be afraid to be free. Freedom is defending the thought that we hate rather than the thought that we love the most, you know.”

“A lot of people are afraid to be free.”

Main Image: Larry Flynt photographed in his office, December 2019 (Photo: Gustavo Turner)

Opinion: Why Larry Flynt Was Crucial in the Fight for Free Expression by Gustavo Turner originally appeared in XBIZ

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