I get asked about sex machines all the time, but I rarely get an opportunity to try them out. They’re often ludicrously expensive and manufacturers are, understandably, reticent about sending them out to reviewers as a result. This means that most of my experiences with them have been one-offs at parties or play events.
This month, though, I received the Velvet Thruster Sex Machine from Velvet Brands to try, and I’m excited to tell you all about it!
What is a Sex Machine, Anyway?
In short, a sex machine is any mechanical device designed to simulate sexual activity. This means that, in an expansive definition, pretty much any motorised sex toy could be considered a sex machine. However, in practice, the term usually describes penetrative toys that have a thrusting mechanism for simulating penis-in-vagina (or penis-in-anus) sex. Another term for these toys is “fucking machines.”
Meet the Velvet Thruster
Velvet Brands is an American pleasure products company, and Velvet Thruster is perhaps the company’s most well-known and sought after line of products.
The Velvet Thruster is a thrusting, cordless sex machine. It allows you to use various, interchangeable heads with one unit. There are currently six penetrative silicone attachments available, plus one penis stroker attachment. Velvet Thrusters are also available in four colours – lilac, mint green, red, and black – so you can choose your favourite or mix and match.
I received the Frankie attachment, which is a dildo 10″ in length (7″ insertable, bringing the entire toy to a whopping 12″ in length) and 1.2″ in diameter, with four deep ridges on the shaft just below the head.
The Velvet Thruster comes with a suction cup, allowing you to affix it to a surface for hands-free use. A charging cable is also included.
Confusingly, the Velvet site describes the toy as “water resistant” but it’s definitely not waterproof enough to submerge it. So don’t use it the bath or shower, or in a wet environment such as a bathroom. You shouldn’t submerge the toy to clean it, either – use a body-safe sterile wipe instead.
What I Like About the Velvet Thruster Frankie
Danyell and Alex, the founders of Velvet Brands and designers of the Velvet Thruster, both come from an engineering background, working for organisations like Honeywell, Airbus, and NASA. It is unsurprising, then, that their patented toy is thoughtfully designed and built to exacting standards.
Though it’s pretty large compared to your typical dildo or vibrator, the Velvet Thruster is at the smaller end of the sex machine market. So if you want a thrusting product you can theoretically take with you on date nights/to sex clubs/through airport security, you’ve found it.
The Velvet Thruster’s exterior is silicone, which is not only body-safe but (appropriately) velvety soft and smooth. The pronounced ridges on the Frankie attachment offer an unusual and intense sensation. Be aware that you’ll definitely need lube with this one – it’s always a good idea with penetrative toys anyway, and the Velvet Thruster’s silicone is a little grabby if not properly lubricated.
As I’ve already mentioned, the ability to change the Velvet Thruster’s head is very welcome as it means you can enjoy multiple different sensations without needing to rebuy the whole unit. Far more cost-effective and sustainable. I only have one attachment so I haven’t tried changing them personally, but other reviews suggest it’s pretty quick and simple.
This machine can thrust at up to an impressive 136 strokes per minute. If (like me) this sounds too intense for you, don’t worry. It has six different speed settings, so you can choose the one that’s right for you. The Velvet Thruster’s 3.2″ of thrust might not be enough for folks who prefer very deep penetration, but for me it was just about perfect as I find anything too deep to be painful. I don’t want to be prodded in the cervix, thanks.
I like the Velvet Thruster’s semi-firm silicone for similar reasons. It’s rigid enough to get a satisfying “fucking” sensation, but not so rigid that it’s uncomfortable in use. The Frankie attachment is pleasingly flexible in its top 3″, allowing for easier positioning and targeting of the spots that work for you.
The included suction cup adds lots of different interesting possibilities. You can mount your Thruster to all kinds of surfaces (walls, floors, windows… hey, I’m not judging!) and enjoy it hands-free. And the suction cup is seriously strong, so you don’t need to worry about the toy coming unstuck in use.
By far my favourite way to use the Velvet Thruster, though, is to have a partner use it on me while I use a small vibrator on my clit.
The Velvet Thruster’s battery life is also frankly incredible, giving you something like 8 hours of use on a single full charge. In a world where most rechargeable sex toys offer 1-2 hours, maybe 3 hours if you’re really lucky, 8 is absolutely amazing.
Anything I Didn’t Like?
By far the biggest downside of the Velvet Thruster sex machine is that it’s large and heavy. This can make it tricky to use by yourself, particularly if positioning or holding heavy toys is difficult for you. I suspect the long-reach handle accessory would make solo use much easier. I’m seriously considering investing in one for this reason.
The controls are also slightly annoying. The machine has bidirectional speed controls, which is a big positive. But for some reason you have to press the main on/off button twice to actually switch the toy off. The first press reduces the speed down to the lowest setting, but doesn’t switch it off. This could be problematic if you need to stop quickly, especially because the main on/off button is actually quite fiddly and difficult to press.
The only other thing I don’t like is the noise, which is a sort of high-pitched repetitive whine. To be fair to Velvet, though, I’ve never encountered a thrusting toy that didn’t make basically this same noise. I think it might just be an unfortunate but unavoidable downside of the genre.
Verdict: Worth the Money?
Like any sex machine, the Velvet Thruster is expensive. Prices range from $246-$300 (or £204-£245 on the UK site) for a preconfigured machine, depending on which head you choose. Additional attachments range from £38-£61. You can also customise your toy with various accessories and upgrades, such as handles, if you like.
So is the Velvet Thruster sex machine worth it? I’m going to say yes, overall, it’s an excellent product that is fairly and competitively priced for what it is. I know I’ll get plenty of use out of mine!
You can buy Velvet Thruster products directly from the manufacturer.
Thanks to Velvet Brands for sending me this product to review. All opinions and experiences are, as ever, my own. Affiliate links appear within this post.