MELANIE CRISTOL: FOUNDER & CEO, LORALS

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How did you get into the industry? 

I came up with the idea for Lorals when I was on a vacation and needed a dental dam. I knew it would be impossible to buy one, since they’re not popular enough to be sold in most stores (particularly on the coast of Mexico!). But even if we’d been able to get one, the idea of using it felt like a bummer. I wanted to feel sexy and confident and have a wonderful and easy intimate experience, and dental dams just didn’t fit the bill. 

I started having conversations with friends about their oral sex experiences, and I heard over and over again that they said no to oral for a variety of reasons, even when they wanted to be saying yes. Some said no because they were concerned about STDs, others because they felt self-conscious, others because they’d been through sexual trauma and the experience felt too intimate, and others because their partners had beards or chapped lips and oral sex physically hurt. I realized that stylish and thin latex panties could help so many people say yes to oral sex more often, and I quit my job to create Lorals.

What else to know?

I’ve had a fun few weeks doing a variety of speaking engagements, from “Manufacturing Physical Products” at the Lesbians Who Tech Summit, to a Women of Sex Tech panel produced by XBIZ, to a workshop on oral sex and rimming techniques at the Sex Expo! 

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