dildoart

At What Point Is a Dildo Too Big?

This story was inspired by the 23-inch dong doctors recently pulled from some dude's asshole. You're welcome.

A few months ago, Italian doctors were forced to invent a lasso-like device to remove a 23-inch rubber dildo that was lodged deep inside a 31-year-old man. The patient told the medical staff that the monstrous sex toy “was not removable by hand” and had been stuck inside his rectum for 24 hours before he decided to visit the hospital.

Fortunately for him, the doctors succeeded in removing the gargantuan dong with their innovative tool, and he was able to return home that night without experiencing any lasting symptoms.

It probably goes without saying that I have many, many questions about this man and his colossal dildo, but more than anything else, I want to know why a sex toy would ever need to be this large — if there’s any real reason beyond a blatant love of excessive?

“People are a diverse species, and everyone has unique preferences that provide pleasure to them,” says clinical sexologist and certified sex coach Sunny Rodgers, who serves as resident sexual health and wellness educator for Pipedream Products, a sex toy manufacturer that offers a line of extremely large dildos called King Cock. “There are people who desire a ‘full’ feeling… in order to experience this feeling, they turn to large sex toys.”

But Rodgers warns that large dildos (a qualifier that varies greatly, depending on the dimensions of the user) require preliminary periods of stretching before being inserted, especially if you plan on putting one inside your ass. “When a person stretches their anal opening on a regular basis, it causes a change in their body — their anal opening becomes stretched, which is why using an anal sex toy is recommended prior to having anal sex,” she explains. “The rectum also isn’t self-lubricating [unlike the vagina], which makes stretching a slow process.”

Rodgers also warns that extreme stretching can leave a lifelong impact on your holes (although, this only really applies if you’re using seriously massive dongs). “Of course, our bodies can heal themselves,” she says. “But I’ve personally met people who have anal incontinence [the inability to control bowel movements] in their later years due to excessive anal stretching. The human body is only able to heal itself so much, and in extreme instances, it can’t become brand new all over again.”

Chelsea McCain, sex toys and novelties manager for the online adult retailer and entertainment website Adult Empire, seconds this notion. “Dildos with too much length or girth, when inserted without the right amount of lubrication, can cause small tears in the anus or vagina,” she explains, adding that trainer kits can be used to slowly (and safely) stretch your holes to help them handle larger dongs. “Trainer kits start at a smaller length and girth, then work up to larger sizes.”

Like Rodgers, McCain also warns that stretching the ass may require more patience (and lube) than stretching the vagina. “Compared to the vagina, the asshole requires more patience, and toys that are too large, although they may be tempting, need to be put on the back burner until your body is trained and ready,” she says, recommending that you size up by only a quarter of an inch whenever you feel like your ass can handle it.

When it comes to stretching the vagina, McCain says that they certainly have more give than an asshole, but that doesn’t mean they don’t also require a slow and steady stretching before being introduced to massive dildos. “Vaginas are approximately two to four inches long, and they can become four to eight inches long when turned on,” she explains. “Large toys entering this small, dark hole can cause tearing and chafing — just like when using anal toys, sizing up slowly and training your body is the proper thing to do.”

Despite the risks, there’s definitely a market for ever-larger dongs. “The bestselling size for dildos seems to be a seven-inch slim dildo,” Rodgers says. “But whenever I think we’ve made the largest size that consumers are looking for, such as a 14-inch dildo, I get a call from someone who wants to go even bigger.”

Doc Johnson’s chief product designer, Anjani Siddhartha, recently reinforced this idea when discussing mushroom-shaped dildos with my colleague, Tierney Finster:

“Generally speaking, in the last few years, we’ve seen the market shift and demand larger and larger products. For example, we used to make double-penetration products, but now I’m making triple-penetration products. Some of our products are as thick as beer cans now.”

So, at the end of the day, so long as you’re into stretching out, the sky’s the limit when it comes to how big a dildo can (or should) be. “While I’d love to share my personal opinion about when a sex toy or dildo is too big for someone, this is a personal preference for each individual,” Rodgers emphasizes. “While I may think a dildo is too large, another person may think it’s the perfect size for them.”

McCain thrusts this notion home. “Everyone’s feelings of pleasure are different; however, to discover that pleasure, this needs to be done correctly and safely so that you alone, or you with a partner, are getting the most out of the experience and not causing damage to your body,” she says. “When a dildo is too big isn’t the question — it’s how we educate people about using larger toys and eventually achieving the pleasure that they’re looking for without causing harm.”