Dame co-founder Alexandra Fine talks about designing sex products that close the pleasure gap

What would life be without sex? Surely none of us would be here without it. And yet for so many women sex is often less pleasurable for them than for their partners. That was the catalyst that set behavioral psychologist Alexandra Fine (who teamed up with product engineer Janet Lieberman) off on a journey to create Dame Products, a line of sex toys designed to close the “pleasure gap” between women and men.

The products are unique in that they provide clitoral stimulation without getting in the way of sexual intercourse, creating an experience that is engaging for both partners. One of the biggest challenges in reimagining the vibrator, as Fine discusses in her chat at PSFK 2017, was how to design a sex toy that added to the experience of having sex, rather than completely taking it over.

Here are some key takeaways:

Let customer feedback drive product innovation

All too often product designers let their own ideas—however brilliant they may be—take over. Dame is a fantastic example of a company that started from the ground up by listening to the needs of women and their partners, helping to create a sex toy that adequately addresses their needs and desires.

Live your purpose

Part of what makes Dame a success is that it stands for something bigger than just its products. It’s goal to close the pleasure gap between men and women is more than just marketing spin, it drives how the company operates and how its products are designed.

What would life be without sex? Surely none of us would be here without it. And yet for so many women sex is often less pleasurable for them than for their partners. That was the catalyst that set behavioral psychologist Alexandra Fine (who teamed up with product engineer Janet Lieberman) off on a journey to create Dame Products, a line of sex toys designed to close the “pleasure gap” between women and men.

The products are unique in that they provide clitoral stimulation without getting in the way of sexual intercourse, creating an experience that is engaging for both partners. One of the biggest challenges in reimagining the vibrator, as Fine discusses in her chat at PSFK 2017, was how to design a sex toy that added to the experience of having sex, rather than completely taking it over.