What Is a Fleshlight? | What You Need to Know

Published: Jun 18, 2022 | Updated: Sep 14, 2022

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Fleshlights | What You Need to Know

© Image from Dainis Graveris

A fleshlight is a sex toy for male masturbation that simulates the sensations of vaginal, anal, and oral sex with lifelike openings and soft, internal canals. They’re sometimes also called “male masturbation units,” or “male strokers.”

Fleshlight® is actually a sex toy brand name for a device designed by Steve Shubin, which was patented in 1997 as “a device useful for collection of sperm from human males, preferably in a discreet, camouflaged manner.” Today, however, the term “fleshlight” has become a general name for all sleeves, tubes, openings, and so on, where you can place a penis in for masturbation purposes. By the way, if you’re interested, you can read the full patent description of the original Fleshlight® here.

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In any case, fleshlights got their name because they indeed have the shape of large flashlight (or torch), which is the well-known portable hand-held electric lamp. Of course, the similarity of fleshlights and flashlights ends about there.

Fleshlights can be purchased in many variations, notably when it comes to different internal textures, styles of openings, flexibility, and tightness, which all give a different feeling. They’re also available in a variety of skin tones, or in either manual, automatic, or hybrid versions.

Of late, it has also become fashionable that sex workers use fleshlights to stimulate the client’s penis in order to enhance the (paid) masturbation practice.

Some people prefer to warm-up the fleshlight before use to have a more pleasurable experience. This is typically carried out by dipping the sleeve into soap-free, warm water until the device reaches about body temperature. The lubricant used may also be warmed-up. Additionally, you can also buy special electronic Sleeve Warming Poles to do the pre-warming job for you.

Cleaning the fleshlight is rather easy; running some warm, clean water over the surface of the sleeve is usually sufficient to wash away the “end product,” and the lube used. In any case, it’s of course strongly advised to follow the cleaning, drying, and storage instructions of the fleshlight manufacturer.


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