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The Creatively Kinky History of Butt Plugs

~ JULY 2022 ~


Sex toys have an intricate history that most people aren’t keen on — and butt plugs are no different.


In the early 1900s, vibrators were prescribed as medical devices to help treat women with hysteria. Ironically at the same time, Dr. Young was selling “Ideal Rectal Dilators,” marketed to heal headaches, insomnia, bad breath, acne, anemia, anorexia, hemorrhoids, nervousness, irritability and more.

On an even more ironic note, these rectal dilators are identical to what we now know as butt plugs and anal training kits. Dr. Young swore by his treatment so deeply that he claimed: “the few failures… are due to neglect to use them.” They even came packed with a lubricant for insertion.

Dr. Young’s directions were “First warm dilator in warm water. Then lubricate outside of the dilator with Doctor Young’s Piloment (or if it is not available, with vaseline) and while in a squatting position — or while lying on the side with knees drawn up — gently insert into the rectum as far as the flange or rim.” As you can see, the directions are identical to those of a modern-day anal training kit.


But in 1943, Dr. Young was handed a lawsuit by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for not having any medical evidence to support his findings and eventually, his business was dissolved.

The story — as hilarious as it is — points two an important question: Did Dr. Young truly believe that butt plugs could cure all? Or was the rectal dilator a foolproof method of selling anal training kits in disguise?


Granted, there’s no proof that Dr. Young was sneakily selling butt plugs for pleasure, but when you take a look at the modern use of butt plugs, the two kits are very similar.



A version of this article originally appeared here on hypebae.com

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