The Best Non-Phallic Sex Toys

Pleasure and penetration don’t always go hand-in-hand.

collage of a woman, a Bloomi sex toy, and a silhouette of two people about to kiss
(Image credit: Jonelle Afurong)

When you think of the best sex toys or best vibrators, you may initially picture a phallic object. There's an antiquated assumption that sex toys for women should mimic (or at least resemble) a penis, but the truth is that the world of pleasure extends far beyond the confines of heteronormativity. Non-phallic sex toys are great for anyone looking to expand their sexual repertoire or simply mix things up, and they’re crucial for those who prefer not to have anything resembling a phallus in their bed.

“Non-phallic sex toys decenter the penis, allowing a more comfortable, pleasurable experience for those who may not be attracted to men or a penis,” says Shamyra Howard, Sexologist, LCSW.

She adds that they’re also powerful tools for those who have experienced trauma, explaining, “Non-phallic sex toys allow survivors of sexual assault to reclaim their bodies, sexuality, and sex life. Many survivors who were violated by a person with a penis want to explore sexuality while de-centering the penis. Non-phallic sex toys provide users with another chance at safe, no-pressure sexual exploration.”

Finally, these sex toys transcend the limits of a phallic object, allowing users to explore pleasure beyond penetration. Non-phallic sex toys come in a variety of different shapes and sizes, allowing users to better access areas like the clitoris and rectum, as well as erogenous zones all over the body. Howard agrees, “Non-phallic sex toys are often multi-functional and can provide pleasurable stimulation to other erogenous zones such as the clitoris, nipples, inner things, neck, breasts, knees, and labia.”

Also Recommended

Meet the Expert

Shamyra Howard
Shamyra Howard

Shamyra Howard is an international award-winning sexologist, licensed clinical social worker, and AASECT certified sex therapist committed to helping people improve their relationship and intimate lives. She is also the founder of On the Green Couch, where she helps people overcome sexual obstacles, and has authored two books.

Gabrielle Ulubay
Beauty Writer

Gabrielle Ulubay is a Beauty Writer at Marie Claire. She has also written about sexual wellness, politics, culture, and fashion at Marie Claire and at publications including The New York Times, HuffPost Personal, Bustle, Alma, Muskrat Magazine, O'Bheal, and elsewhere. Her personal essay in The New York Times' Modern Love column kickstarted her professional writing career in 2018, and that piece has since been printed in the 2019 revised edition of the Modern Love book. Having studied history, international relations, and film, she has made films on politics and gender equity in addition to writing about cinema for Film Ireland, University College Cork, and on her personal blog, Before working with Marie Claire, Gabrielle worked in local government, higher education, and sales, and has resided in four countries and counting. She has worked extensively in the e-commerce and sales spaces since 2020, and spent two years at Drizly, where she developed an expertise in finding the best, highest quality goods and experiences money can buy.

Deeply political, she believes that skincare, haircare, and sexual wellness are central tenets to one's overall health and fights for them to be taken seriously, especially for people of color. She also loves studying makeup as a means of artistic expression, drawing on her experience as an artist in her analysis of beauty trends. She's based in New York City, where she can be found watching movies or running her art business when she isn't writing. Find her on Twitter at @GabrielleUlubay or on Instagram at @gabrielle.ulubay, or follow her art at