The personal care brand's Staycation pop-up features special events and a curated selection of products from other like-minded companies, turning the sex shop into a wellness destination

Tucked away on a quiet street in Brooklyn's Williamsburg neighborhood, a popup named Staycation invites in passersby with AC, a cooler full of seltzer and curated playlists. Some evenings there are events like haiku workshops and happy hours. The space is bright and airy, a respite from the noisy city streets outside. That's why it's hard to believe that Staycation is a sex shop.

Run by DTC sexual health and wellness brand Maude, it's perhaps an oversimplification to call the cozy space a sex shop. But the pop-up, which runs until the end of August, proudly offers condoms, personal lubricant and vibrators, all sold in millennial-friendly packaging. Even the candles burned in the store—also made by Maude—double as massage oil when melted.

Maude

But instead of seeming gimmicky or gross, Staycation comes across as a neighborhood store that just happens to offer well-loved sexual wellness products. There's no shame in making a purchase.

“If you look at the typical consumer experience around sexual health, either in a drug store or sex shop, it’s poorly marketed and designed, over-assorted and either taboo or clinical,” says Éva Goicochea, the founder and CEO of Maude. “When they walk into Staycation, the first reaction is that it’s friendly and inviting. We encourage them to grab a drink from the fridge, have a seat on the couch, and spend as much time as they want hanging out in the space.”

Part of the pop-up's down-to-earth vibe is due to the fact that Staycation also offers a curated selection of lifestyle products from over 20 other vendors that share a similar ethos. These partners include the likes of bedding brand Brooklinen, single-serve vintner Usual, and olive oil producer Brightland.

The result is a total lifestyle contained inside a store, with a millennial version of dozens of everyday products. Where some people might feel bashful walking into a full-fledged sex shop, Staycation eases visitors into the experience of buying, say, a vibrator. And if shoppers chicken out, they can always buy a pack of spaghetti or a bottle of conditioner instead. Maude's products remain the top-selling items inside the store.

Maude

Another element of the appeal is the decided un-flashiness of it all. Many other brands thrive in splashy, short-lived pop-ups that draw crowds and lines out the door. But Maude works at a different pace, meaning that customers are more likely to amble in and take their time. Staycation's three-month stay feels right for the brand and its many partners.

“Though the playbook for many young brands is to have a one-time pop-up, we knew that testing and having a multi-purpose space was more important to us than investing in one idea especially given the risks,” Goicochea says. “Having the flexibility and fixed cost of a street-facing space as part of our HQ allows for us to be nimble and continually shift so that we find the right approach and partners that work best for our customers.”

Maude owns the Williamsburg space, which previously took the form of a pop-up called the Winter Studio, so there's more to come in the future. But for now, Staycation is sticking around to enjoy the final weeks of summer.

Maude

Maude

Staycation

Tucked away on a quiet street in Brooklyn's Williamsburg neighborhood, a popup named Staycation invites in passersby with AC, a cooler full of seltzer and curated playlists. Some evenings there are events like haiku workshops and happy hours. The space is bright and airy, a respite from the noisy city streets outside. That's why it's hard to believe that Staycation is a sex shop.

Run by DTC sexual health and wellness brand Maude, it's perhaps an oversimplification to call the cozy space a sex shop. But the pop-up, which runs until the end of August, proudly offers condoms, personal lubricant and vibrators, all sold in millennial-friendly packaging. Even the candles burned in the store—also made by Maude—double as massage oil when melted.