Dr. Ruth Neustifter explains how to choose the right harness for you!
Strap-on Harnesses can be a wonderful addition to your play regardless of your gender and sexuality. These harnesses are used to strap a dildo against the pelvis, and can be worn above an existing penis or lower on the pelvis (if desired) for those with vulvas. They’re handy for penetration, as well as for exploring oral sex on a dildo. For those who use their dildo as a prosthetic penis, instead of just as a toy, harnesses allow for secure wear during play and can also be used for packing (wearing a prosthetic penis that isn’t necessarily intended for sexual play).
A basic harness can be crafted from a firm rubber or metal c-ring and some thicker, non-stretch clothes line using a pattern like this: http://passionandsoul.com/video/kinkacademy-speed-cuffs-and-rope-strap-ons . While this is a fine temporary harness (and fun to learn), many of the customers at Secret Pleasures are looking for something a bit easier, more comfortable, and with a different aesthetic. It’s wonderful to help customers who’ve come in to buy their first harness! Here are some of the questions we ask to help customers decide on the right first harness/es for them.
Are you looking for more feminine or masculine looking, or just something attractively functional?
Just as with clothing, foods, and vibrators, it’s important that your harness look the way you want it to. For many customers that begins with whether they’re seeking a more masculine or more feminine harness. While our stock varies with demand, as I write this our display includes frilly black and pink leather harnesses, camo print cotton briefs as harnesses, and many more. While the functionality does matter, we only carry products that we believe to be of high quality. That way you can rest assured that the one that calls to you will also be a well made harness.
Do you have a preference of material? Velvety fabric with straps, leather, or washable smooth fabrics?
Different materials have their own pros and cons. Aside from their appearance and feel, they function and wear differently. Are you looking for a washable harness or do you prefer the look and feel of leather? Do you need something that comes on and off easily without readjusting, or do you prefer to personalize your fit every time?
What size dildo would you like to wear? By this we are referring to the diameter of the dildo insertable part of the, not the length or the size of the base. Learn about diameter at http://www.wikihow.com/Calculate-the-Diameter-of-a-Circle .
In order to wear it in a strap-on harness your dildo or prosthetic will likely need a flared base. If you wear one that is especially narrow (often narrowing than 1.25”) or especially wide (over about 2”, usually) then you may need a harness with replaceable rings to accommodate your phallus. Otherwise, most harnesses will be able to accommodate the width of your dildo. The length of your dildo rarely matters when purchasing a harness, with one exception. That said, if you have a large or hanging belly, you may wish to either buy a longer dildo for greater reach or wear your harness higher on your body for easier reach and maneuverability. Harnesses can often adjust to fit a wide range of sizes. Our harness have fit customers from XS up to a women’s plus size 32, and may range higher or smaller depending on your built and the type you’ve chosen.
How vigorously are planning to use it?
Leather harnesses will usually stand up to heavy, long term use, but can require more care with fewer cleaning options. Harnesses made to look like cotton or lacy underwear should be purchased to fit snuggly and may stretch over time, with washing, or with extended vigorous use. Harnesses with high quality elastic and velcro will usually give well with your body without losing their shape, even with vigorous use and washing.
What size do you need for your body?
Harness straps are usually worn low. Instead of the waist they’re typically around the hips. However, if you have an especially narrow waist compared to your hips, or if you prefer to wear your harness higher on your belly then you will be measuring up to your waist instead of across your hips. You should buy a harness that allows you to make it both tighter and looser than you think you will need. Try not to buy one that barely fits you in either direction.