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Who wouldn't want an orgasm as a present? Well, you'd be surprised. Some people's greed is not properly directed. In order to avoid offending their delicate sensibilities, follow these ten rules of gift-giving etiquette this holiday season:

1. If the recipient is a sex-toy virgin, go with a kit since they tend to be nicely packaged and are typically beginner-friendly.

2. If the gift is for your partner, toys you can share--like bath accessories, massage oils, little love rings, and finger toys --are a pretty safe bet.

3. If you're worried the recipient won't be totally amenable to the idea of a sex toy as a present, try an undercover toy like a vibrating lipstick--that way, they can always choose to accept it in jest, if they're embarrassed. And they can secretly use it without anyone ever accidentally stumbling on their sex toy, since it's not a sex toy, it's just a lipstick!

4. You can never go wrong with a high-end toy that comes in a beautiful box, is shiny and/or sparkly, and usually looks nothing like a sex toy, e.g. Lelos, Jimmy Janes, the Mk. I, etc.

5. Don't give a "gift" that's obviously a present to yourself, like polyester butt-floss lingerie that may look good to you but feels terribly uncomfortable to the person you're supposed to be pampering. (Make requests for that kind of thing on your own birthday)...

6. You can almost never go wrong with a Fun Factory toy. Unless, of course, you pick one of their few toys with realistic veins.

7. Make sure the present you're giving is appropriate to the person: A leather harness for the vegan in your life or a PVC dildo for a beloved environmentalist probably won't be well received (you may as well get them fruitcake while you're at it). Go for an eco sex kit instead.

8. Shop together whenever possible--it may take some of the surprise out of it, but it means they get to pick out something they truly want. Take them to a clean, well-lighted sex toy shop with helpful staff like Babeland or Good Vibrations, or a high-end sex toy boutique like Kiki de Montparnasse, or visit one of their websites together.

9. Never give a 7 1/2-inch veiny dildo called Johnny, even if you do tie a red ribbon around it.

10. If you can't decide what to get, you can always just buy them a copy of the book "Sex Toy: An A-Z Guide to Bedside Accessories" by yours truly, which has a lot more helpful info on almost every toy you can imagine.

For more on gift-giving etiquette, see last year's advice to a reader wondering if they could give a sex toy as a Christmas present.


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Em & Lo, more formally known as Emma Taylor and Lorelei Sharkey, are the self-proclaimed Emily Posts of the modern bedroom.

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