Lingerie & Sex Toy Sales Boosted by Fifty Shades of Grey

Fifty Shades of Grey is the first of a trilogy of novels by author E L James, and its raunchy nature has sent readers flocking to sex shops and elsewhere in an attempt to emulate the kinky scenes.

The book, dubbed ‘Mummy Porn’, has given middle-aged, middle-class women across the world permission to get more experimental in the bedroom. The explosive popularity of the book seems to have convinced readers that it is OK to experiment as everyone is doing it, and lingerie and sex toy shops are benefiting hugely.

Not since Sex and the City popularised the Rampant Rabbit in the late nineties have sales of sex toys risen so rapidly. Even in this time of recession, companies who deal in racy garments and accessories are certainly not feeling the pinch., an internet retailer, announced a forty percent increase in sales across the board in the year since the book’s release, with bondage items being the highest sellers.

Ann Summers
Ann Summers sells the book itself, and can’t order stock fast enough. Selling out on average every two days in two weeks at the high point, spokespersons for the shop said customers couldn’t get enough of it. Sales of whips and riding crops have risen by around 15%, handcuffs and spanking paddles by 30% and blindfolds by 60%. The biggest spin-off, however, is something called jiggle balls. Used to great effect in the novel by heroine Anastasia and her lover, Christian Grey, these tiny little sex aids are now becoming an essential part of every woman’s collection.

Alternative Shopping
While many women may still feel too embarrassed to stop off at their local sex shop, alternatives have been found. A survey of hardware shops in New York reported that sales of soft nylon rope had grown tenfold in the last year, and females are now the main purchasers.

The immediate popularity of the book suggests that the fantasies themselves are not new. Many women have secretly dreamed about experimenting with bondage and sado-masochism for years. What the novel has done is made it acceptable to talk about these fantasies, and therefore to act them out. No longer do women have to covertly sneak into shops when they want to buy whips to go with their French bras; these days they can march in with pride, head held high and a copy of Fifty Shades under their arm.

It is highly unlikely that they will be the only one doing so. Any woman who likes the idea of emulating the sex-play in the novel but still feels squeamish about admitting to it in public simply sends along their partner – one Ann Summers sales assistant told of a male customer who came into the store with a copy of the book, placed it on the counter and simply asked for ‘one of everything in there please’! With two more books to go, who knows what the ladies will be buying next year.

Post written on behalf of Myriam Girard

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