Ladies, start your … |

Ladies, start your …

Veronica Whitney
AE Sex Toys1 SM 4-19

EAGLE COUNTY – There’s a body scrub that smells like cookies and a body powder that smells like chocolate. There’s the “Cremesicle,” an edible massage cream that comes in nine flavors and several vibrators with funky animal names – Pearl Dolphin, Escalating Elephant and Jack Rabbit.Welcome to what appears to be the newest in at-home soirees – Passion Parties. In the ’70s and ’80s, it was Mary Kay and Tupperware, but in 2006, women are making a girls night in of buying and selling sex toys and lotions to enhance their sex life.At a recent Passion Party in Edwards, Shelley Brown, 33, of Eagle-Vail, was browsing through the catalogue deciding what to buy. “It was fun,” Brown said after Annie Troutman, a sales representative for Passion Parties, finished her presentation. “Every woman should experience the knowledge and satisfaction of a Passion Party. The reactions are fun. The products are fun.”Passion Parties, the largest supplier of sensual products in the United States and Canada, offers about 200 different products – from lotions with pheromones to the Buzzin’ Brush to playful vibrators and other sex toys. The motto of the company? Making “Every Day Valentine’s Day.”

“This is about feeling sexy yourself and to spice up your love life,” said Troutman, who lives in Eagle-Vail. “A lot is about pampering yourself with bath products. It’s more about trying to bring different aspects to a relationship.”

Passion Parties seem to spice things up, even when there’s no men around. At a recent “Wine and Passion” party in Eagle – a combination of a wine party and a Passion Party – the women attending, who were mostly in their 30s and 40s, were quiet and subdued during the wine portion and became rowdy and mischievous during the passion part. “Look at this,” said one woman to another while browsing through “Tickle the Pickle,” a book of graphically described sex tips. “I need this book.”At the same time, another group was examining an elegant white vibrator called the Magic Monarch Vibe, which sells for $75, and another woman was checking out the body lotions with pheromones, which are supposed to increase sexual arousal.Of 14 women attending the party, about 11 bought something during the passion portion. The seller of wines made about $550 in sales, while Troutman made about $800 selling gels, lotions and some vibrators.In fact, direct sex product sales have seen a steady rise in the past years, said Pat Davis, president of Passion Parties. The Las Vegas-based company, founded in 1994, has grown more than 50 percent in the past five years, she added.”We have 28 leaders who have team sales of over one million each year and three leaders whose team are over $5 million each year,” Davis said. “I believe there are reasons for this growth. There’s nowhere else where a woman has a safe, comfortable and confidential environment where she can get education about her body and how to enhance her relationship and have a giggle while doing it.”

Passion Parties are a twist on the Tupperware party concept, Davis said.”We have answers for questions that women are too shy to ask their doctors, mothers and friends,” Davis said. “We provide women with an entertaining and educational forum for learning about sex.”It’s a movement,” she added. “Women are taking control of their satisfaction. This is the new woman, contributing financially and in the bedroom. And husbands don’t get excited about their wives going to a Tupperware party, but they do give them cash and credit cards to come to our parties.”Nationwide, there are more than 10,000 Passion Parties each month, Davis said. At the parties, consultants showcase a wide range of passion products, including body lotions, shower gels, perfumes and lingerie. After a product presentation, there’s a separate ordering room for privacy.”There are things that are still private, and you might not want to discuss openly with everyone at a party,” said Troutman, who has represented at seven mostly all-women parties. “It’s better when women are alone, they are more comfortable and they are willing to buy instead of having to discuss everything with their significant other.”There are parties where people are less inhibited and other ones that she has almost no sales, Troutman added.”At a recent party where the guests were mostly Mexicans, the hostess even invited her mother and grandmother, so I can see how different cultures react,” she said.Davis said the company has the couple’s needs in mind when deciding what products to offer.”Sixty percent of our inventory is foreplay stuff because women need 20 minutes more foreplay than men,” she said. “Only 40 percent of our products require batteries.”

In fact, the company’s No. 1 selling product is Pure Satisfaction, a sexual enhancing gel that helps women achieve orgasm, she said. “All the products are safe,” Davis added. “We never had a problem in 11 years.”

When the hostess of the Edwards’ party invited Andrea Fulton, she never told her what the party was about just to surprise her friend.”My favorite part was the fun – it was so much fun – and I also liked learning,” said Fulton, 24, of Eagle-Vail, who said she was going to surprise her husband with a purchase. “I have seen a lot of the stuff in catalogues, but never had it in my hand.”Other guests at the party said they had a lot of fun, but decided not to buy anything.”I’ve never been to a party like this one,” said Luciana Bacolla, 28, of Avon. “I don’t think I need this stuff, maybe because of my age. I’m happy with what I have.”Alejandra Billoni, who also attended the Edwards party, said it was a lot of fun, but she wasn’t interested in buying anything.”The best stimulant for sex is love,” said Billoni, 42, of Avon. “You can use your imagination without using any toys.”Vail, Colorado

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