Jun 152018
 

BMS Factory Swan Curve vibrator leaning against the Swan Wand, with Mini Swan Wand in foreground

When I hear the word “swan,” I think of a few things. Grace. Elegance. The color white. Bjork. Overwrought symbols of romance. Ostentatious pool floaties. And, because the folds of my brain are lined with a freakishly encyclopedic knowledge of sex toys, I think of a line of rechargeable vibrators called Swan.

Swan is not the manufacturer. The toys are actually produced by BMS Factory, a company that prefers to mysteriously hide behind the names of their various toy lines. They make the favorably-reviewed Leaf and PalmPower lines, others called Pillow Talk and Lux, and the motors in some stuff from Jopen. If you’ve ever seen the phrase Powered by PowerBullet® stamped onto a sex toy box or printed in marketing materials, the toy’s made by BMS.

Counter-intuitive as it is considering the eponymous Power Bullet is my personal nemesis (and pet example of terribly buzzy vibrations!), Powered by PowerBullet® does seem to indicate a rechargeable toy with a motor that is not complete junk. I first learned this with the Leaf Life, and 6 years later it’s still a toy I greatly enjoy. That really speaks to the quality of the vibration, considering my clit becomes more discerning by the year. I decided it was time to try more toys from BMS.

Eschewing such deeply offensive products as a dual vibe called the Black Swan that comes only in blaring pink, I opted to try the Swan WandMini Swan Wand, and Swan Curve. All of which are silicone, rechargeable,1 waterproof vibes with 1-year warranties, complete with labeled charging cords (YES!) and storage bags. And it has been quite the learning experience… much time has been spent with my eyes narrowed, vibrator pressed to my clit, contemplating the intricacies of these simple-looking toys.

Swan Wand — big, rumbly, and… awkward

The original Swan Wand is probably the most well-known toy in the Swan line. It’s a beastly double-ended vibrator with two robust motors, one in each end — as if the Magic Wand had a love child with a hot pink G-spot vibrator. Many sex bloggers are fans of this toy, all with their own favorite ways of using it: for broad external stimulation, for satisfying internal vibration, for intensely enveloping the G-spot.

And it is good at all of those things. The Swan Wand is, objectively, a good sex toy with a very impressive, very rumbly motor. I do not dispute this. But for every good use this vibrator has, I can think of another toy I’d prefer — for reasons that, I promise, have nothing to do with my aversion to the color pink.

BMS Factory Swan Wand vibrator

For one, the buttons are in the middle of the vibrator. This is unavoidable with double-ended toys, but still causes me to curse the sky when I have the toy inserted and want to change settings. Imagine groping around for buttons on the underside of the vibe — inside or very near the vag — while everything’s slippery with lube. Two buttons which must be pressed simultaneously to turn the thing off.

I do not enjoy this game, especially when internal vibrations are at stake. I need to be able to dial those back, to control them precisely, because the line between “ooh, that’s nice” and “WOW NOPE IT’S SHAKING MY ENTIRE PELVIS” is very thin. I can’t use any of the Swan Wand’s vibration patterns internally, because they all ramp up to an excessive, harsh intensity that makes my vagina want to spit the toy out, immediately, just to get some relief.

The Swan Wand’s expansive large end measures 2″ in diameter and would be excellent for clobbering an intruder. Or, if you’re up for the challenge, occupying every square inch of an orifice. At least that’s how it feels to me. Once swallowed by my vagina, it hooks in there so thoroughly and fills the space so completely that even slight thrusting is difficult. It becomes, actually, claustrophobic… I much prefer the ease, and softness, of the Randy. (Can’t believe I’m calling a humongous dildo “easy,” but compared to the firm Swan Wand, it feels like a gentle nudge.)

The small end of the Swan Wand is a fine, slightly curved shape, but its stimulation is nothing that other G-spot vibes (Mona 2, Rave, Prism V, Big Boss) can’t provide, all with more manageable handles and easily-accessible controls.

I don’t love the Swan Wand as a clitoral toy, either. The small end is an agreeable size for my clit, but grasping it by the fat end feels unwieldy; I’d rather use the SenseVibe. The large end covers more surface area, but if I’m in the mood for that, I’ll use the Magic Wand Rechargeable. On high, the Swan Wand’s big end lands somewhere between settings 2 and 3 on the Magic Wand Rechargeable — closer to 3 if I turn on the additional motor. But it vibrates my hand a LOT more.

“Not my thing, but could be yours” is a sentiment I cringe to express, but I’m not just tossing it off — I do believe it. The Swan Wand is definitely the closest thing you’ll find to a waterproof wand-style vibe, if that’s your dream. It’d be good for folks who love broad stimulation or who’ve always wanted to insert the head of the Magic Wand. Its motor is fantastically thuddy and admirably powerful, and it’s priced appropriately, at $120.

You could argue that the Swan Wand offers more options than the alternative toys I’ve mentioned, and you’d have a point. Its design is open-ended that way. Perhaps, perhaps, if someone isn’t quite sure what they like, it’s a safer bet. It has its merits, and I can appreciate them in theory, but in practice, they’re all a bit lost on me.

Mini Swan Wand — well-priced and strong, but flawed

“Mini” seems too generous: the Mini Swan Wand is like a dollhouse version of the Swan Wand. This shrunken, 4.75″-long version can accommodate only a single motor, concentrated in the fatter end. Still, I’d grade it highly on adjustability. Like the other Swan toys here, I can discern about eight intensity levels. It doesn’t have any pattern options, and I’m not shedding a single tear over it.

BMS Factory Mini Swan Wand vibrator

Controls, however, get a C-. As with the Leaf line, the Mini Swan Wand is controlled by a single button that you must press and hold to turn up the intensity. You WILL end up accidentally turning it off when you mean to turn it up. I guarantee it. The button is also in the weirdest spot: on the back, in the middle. To those who made this choice, I have a question: have you… ever… used a vibrator before? Because we orient toys so they curve toward our genitals, and nobody wants the button on the other side, where they can’t see it, in the middle rather than near the top.

The Mini Swan Wand’s power is impressive. It’s quite strong for its size, landing somewhere between the We-Vibe Touch and Tango. But the quality of the vibration degrades with each bump in intensity, like my smile gradually dissolving into a pained grimace. I’m always happy with how it feels until I start creeping into the higher settings, where it becomes increasingly buzzy and abrasive. It’s not going to prevent orgasm or anything, considering the strength of the vibration, but I prefer something less zippy on the trek toward climax.

Now here’s where price complicates my opinion. If this thing cost over $100, I’d tell you nah, for your money there are better things. But for $50, the Mini Swan Wand is more adjustable and powerful than comparable rechargeable toys. Those who don’t mind the higher-pitched vibrations could like it a lot. There I go again! But it’s true — it’s a decent vibe for the price, just not a stand-out one for me.

Swan Curve — awesome vibrations, annoying controls

I gotta say, the Swan Curve is probably my favorite of the bunch, which is surprising considering it had the biggest hurdle to overcome: squeeze controls. Yep: in lieu of buttons, the Swan Curve has two pads on either side of the handle that vibrate in response to pressure. And while this once-novel technology is useful for creating custom patterns, as the only way to adjust the vibrations it feels pretty short-sighted.

BMS Factory Swan Curve vibrator

But GOSH DANGIT, everything else about this toy is on point. The vibrations are nice and rumbly, and you can get a solid eight intensities out of it by increasing gradually. The versatile design makes sense clitorally2 or internally. It’s a tried and true shape for G-spot stimulation and, basic as it may be, makes for a quite good G-spotter. I relish being able to create patterns that aren’t uterus-shakingly powerful, and that price, $70, is particularly appealing.

The Swan Curve’s control pads don’t compress under my fingers, which is odd and makes me feel forever unsure if I’m doing it right. They’re located on the sides of the handle — not where my fingers rest if I want to adjust it in real time, and why would I? It’s sensitive enough that small changes can make it drop in intensity or cease vibrating entirely, and I’d prefer not to feel like I’m in one of those challenges on Survivor where contestants have to hold an object until their hands fail.

Sure, you can push the button once while squeezing to “lock” it into an intensity. But that requires two hands, and I don’t want to re-program my vibrator every time I want to change a setting!

So, the Swan Curve is not exactly a toy that gets me from point A to point B flawlessly; it does not excel during every portion of the masturbatory experience. I like the variety of the clitoral stimulation when I program a subtle pattern, but I generally don’t want to come during one, and no way in hell am I going to trust my feeble fingers to squeeze adequately enough to ride out an orgasm. I also find it difficult to create a pattern that has no gap in the vibration when it loops.

The actual programming is easier with the similar Minna Ola, which requires less pressure, deflates noticeably under my touch, and features a dedicated button for marking the beginning and end of my pattern. But the Swan Curve wins at everything else: vibration quality and strength, ergonomics, G-spot stimulation — for half the price. Overall, it’s a better toy.

Speaking of being a better toy, the Swan Curve is a little more powerful and definitely more rumbly than the Rave and Mona. Which is quite the statement considering those are a few of my favorite vibrators of all time. $70 is amazing for vibrations like this, and I so wish I could unequivocally endorse this vibe — but instead I must sigh heavily, fantasizing about a version with less gimmicky controls.

Check out the Swan WandMini Swan Wand, and Swan Curve at SheVibe.

  1. Via one of those long thin plugs you stab into the toy. []
  2. Although the shaft is flexible, which could be problematic for someone who uses a LOT of pressure. I didn’t find it to be an issue. []
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