I think I might be fundamentally missing the point of the Hula Beads.
I’ve never been one for ‘love eggs’. It’s such a married-with-2-kids-and-a-silver-car thing – ‘hubby controlled this egg while we were in Tesco! it was such a turn on! lol!’ and all the ones I’ve experienced so far have been noisy and ugly. The Hula Beads are neither of these things, but they still didn’t work out for me. I’m starting think that I should stick to Lelo’s regular line in future, because me and this Insignia line just aren’t getting along like we’re supposed to.
Even though purple’s my least favourite colour, I’ve got to admit that the Hula Beads are ridiculously gorgeous. I have the deep rose set, and it’s a vampy, rich fuchsia offset by gold accents. I’m a total sucker for Lelo’s silicone; satin-smooth, it feels almost velvety, barely picks up dust, and covers the rigid inner workings with a silky, waterproof shell. They feel reassuringly sleek and weighty, but are let down a little by the highlights, which are disappointingly just gold-painted plastic. C’mon, Lelo – surely the £120 price tag warrants actual metal and not spraypainted ABS?
The Hula Beads are rechargeable and remote-controlled via ‘SenseMotion technology’ which essentially boils down to being able to control the included remote control by touch – tilting it, specifically. I reviewed the Ida previously and the remote was the only thing I liked about it, but I’m wondering if I got a faulty one this time round because I have absolutely no idea what it’s doing, ever. It vibrates! Noisily! Sometimes it refuses to turn off! It’s a neverending rollercoaster of adventure, that’s for sure. I’d try my Ida one with these to see there’s any difference, but it’s stopped working (I’ve not even had it a year?) and £29 for a replacement + £10 shipping isn’t an option.
If you don’t feel like wrestling with a temperamental remote control, your other option is switching modes via the teeny tiny button on the beads themselves, which is great, except for one thing – what are you meant to do when they’re inside you? Oh, that’s right, you pull them out and do it manually every time you want to switch it up. Or down. Or sideways.
Hmmmm. If the Hula Beads had, say, 3 modes I’d be okay with this, but they have 8. I never thought I’d be longing for 3 continuous modes and a standard pulse, but here we are, slippery-fingered and swearing with frustration. At least the silicone retrieval cord isn’t stretchy enough to slap you in the vulva?
The Hula Beads need an initial charge of 4 hours and while I was waiting for them to charge I found myself getting pretty excited. Even though they’re not really my thing and if I didn’t like them as intended, surely I could just use them as a plain old kegel egg? Ehhh, not quite – as I found out, they aren’t suited to my anatomy.
They feel clumsy and uncomfortable when they’re inside me, no matter how far I insert them or how much lube I use. They don’t hit my g-spot, either, but to be fair I wasn’t expecting them to as mine is shallow but high up. Overall…alien. Squirmy. Borderline ticklish. Too big. Too weird.
Depending on the kind of stimulation you like, the Hula Beads could work as a bullet vibrator for some people – as the tip slowly rotates, when lubed up it feels a little like a slow moving tongue. I think I’d like using them like this more if the vibrations were deeper – they’re definitely not high pitched and weak, but they feel shallow? They don’t feel like my body’s absorbing them properly. They’re also considerably noisier outside of the body, making a grating noise that sounds a little like a rotary whisk, although this is deadened significantly when they’re inserted.
Still. I was determined to find something to like about them because a) they’re really expensive and b) my Lelo rep was super sweet and I’d feel bad handing in a totally negative review. So my second idea was hey, why not put them in just before someone goes down on me? I do that with the Luna Beads, so surely it’d be even better with these?
It was nice – it’s quite difficult to fuck up oral sex, I think, although I’ve never tried a Sqweel or had a partner who wasn’t ‘gifted’ – but it didn’t add a whole lot to the experience. I like having something to grip around when I come, so there’s that, but I’d prefer that something to press against my g-spot when I do and these miss the mark. If I’m really honest, I missed having my partner’s fingers in me. And the stuff in the copy about having the second bead lay outside the vaginal opening to ‘stimulate your labia’? I’d like to know if the bright spark who came up with that actually tried it. It doesn’t feel like anything; it’s a total non-event.
There is one thing that I like about the Hula beads, though. One thing they do better than the Luna beads, or any cheapie vibrating eggs I’ve tried. Butt stuff. Don’t shout at me – I have no intention of putting the Hula Beads (or the Luna Beads, or any kind of beads that aren’t specifically designed to go butt-diving) in my butt as that is an AWFUL IDEA. Don’t do that! You’ll lose them in your butt forever! But putting something else in my butt while I’ve got the Hula Beads inserted as usual? Sure.
It’s so good. I need thorough warm-up as my partner’s significantly bigger than average, but it’s overwhelming in the best kind of way and that awkward clumsiness I get from them the rest of the time translates to an intense fullness. The only downside is that I can’t have them in me like that on a high setting or a pattern; these feel ‘pokey’, apparently.
As their last test, I decided to test out their extended wear potential and take them to work. There was no way I was going to wander around the offy with these in. The guy behind the counter once ‘young man’-ed me and now he scans my spaghetti hoops through in silence. No, it would be too strange, and too quiet – my work has enough background noise to cover up any telltale vibrating noises, I’m usually left to my own devices and I spend about an equal time sitting down and on my feet. Perfect. Spinny chairs: the final frontier.
I took these to work on a quiet day, got in early, nipped to the toilets, turned them onto the third setting, lubed up, inserted them and went back to my desk. Hm. I spun around on my chair. I got up and moved things around for the sake of it. I answered a phone call from someone who thought we were a swimming pool. I did a little chair dance. I grinned at people wandering in and out. Ha! Little did they know that I had a Cronenberg-esque rotating thing pulsating inside my vagina! I felt dirty, mildly uncomfortable and bored. I envied everyone without a tickly bauble in their orifices. Had my vagina fallen asleep? Is that a thing?
And then I clenched hard, really hard, that kind of ‘your fingers are going to look like witch grapes if you ever get them out of me’ flex, and the rotation seemed to slow*, leaving a low, grinding ‘bbbbrrrrrrrrr’ noise emanating from under my trousers. And that’s when I’d had enough.
I’m bored with the Hula Beads. Disappointed. A bit sad.They have their fleeting moments of ‘oh, fuck, that’s good’ but the rest of the time? No. The orgasms they did give me (I counted three, and ‘helped along’ is probably more accurate) are not worth £120.
They’re beautiful, granted, and yes, they’re a luxury product, but I just can’t recommend them based on my own experiences. I wouldn’t feel good about it. Get a set of Luna Beads instead; they’re much more fun, there’s a plethora of happy reviews out there, you get two sizes to choose from and they’re a fraction of the price.
I was sent the Hula Beads by Lelo in exchange for my review. Sorry Lelo, and I hope you don’t hate me by this point; if it’s any consolation I’m about two tealights away from constructing a full-blown shrine to Ella? If you think the Hula Beads might work for you, they can be purchased direct from Lelo or Lovehoney and Simply Pleasure.
* I just want to make this clear – I gave these to my girlfriend to see if she could slow the rotation like I managed to and she said she couldn’t. I haven’t read any other reviews where other people have been able to do this either, so I’m just assuming that the lethal combination of frustration and boredom gives me the ‘vagina like a steel trap’ superpower. Your mileage may vary.