The Sex Ed We Wished We Had

Sustain condoms founder Meika Hollender has a new book.

Ashley Batz Photography

Forty percent of condoms are purchased by women, yet 70 percent of women feel uncomfortable buying them. Meika Hollender set out to change that with her sustainable and vagina-friendly condom company Sustain. Since launching Sustain condoms in 2014, she’s done more than that. Not only has Hollender created a condom that appeals to women, she’s made sexual health in general more approachable. Sustain now makes organic lube and safe tampons, and Hollender just released her book, Get on Top of Your Pleasure, Sexuality, and Wellness.

The first chapter is called Getting to Know Your Vagina and includes diagrams.

Hollender’s book provides the sex education young women in America need. The first chapter is called Getting to Know Your Vagina and includes various no-nonsense diagrams. The book also addresses periods, self-pleasure, birth control options — and sex, of course. Hollender believes that more open conversations around these topics will lead people toward better sexual wellness products. But she also hopes it will help close the “pleasure gap,” aka the fact that male partners have orgasms way more than their female partners during sex.

Let’s Talk About Sex

Hollender isn’t alone in her quest to help women have better sex. The Assembly member and certified sex coach Myisha Battle works with women and couples to keep this conversation going and improve their sex and dating lives. She also has a sex-positive podcast, called Down for Whatever. Battle’s covered topics like erotic fitness and coming out.

Members recently got a chance to ask Hollender and Battle their own sex questions at an event in the clubhouse. Being San Francisco, questions included:

  • What apps will help spice up my sex life? There aren’t many, but try reading erotica.
  • What is feminist porn? It’s high-production porn often made by women with a focus on gender equality and fair pay for actors. (Check out the Feminist Porn Awards for ideas.)
  • Can you tell me more about sex meditation? Mindfulness is key to enjoying sex.

Things got more personal, too. People asked for advice on how to deal with a partner’s fetish or low libido. The main takeaway: good communication (and possibly lube) can help resolve many sexual dilemmas.

The road to closing the pleasure gap and having better sex will be long — but exciting. And it starts with each of us. In order to figure out what gives us pleasure, we need to experiment with ourselves. As Hollender says, self love is self care.

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