Nox is bridging the gap between sexual wellness and lifestyle for women and non-binary individuals. A revolutionary online shop and online journal based out of Montreal, Nox aims to fulfill the sexual needs that aren’t being met in the current marketplace. Co-founder of Nox, Amy Johnson states, “By curating a beautiful selection of toys and presenting it alongside less intimidating products like organic body oils or hand-poured candles, we aim to present a narrative of what sexy can mean for some people who had previously felt left out or put off.” Nox is modeled after the earliest women-run sex shops. It’s inclusive, informed and looks cute AF. We recently caught up with Amy to absorb a bit of her sexual wellness knowledge:
What were you and your partner, Rachel doing before Nox?
Rachel’s background is in adult toys and mine is in interior design and styling. We’d known each other for ages and she was the first person I thought of when Nox was conceived as an idea. Nox is the perfect culmination of knowledgeable information and aesthetic, so we were the perfect blend as partners. We both believe that good design is sexy, but we’re not about to sell you a beautiful toy we don’t believe in.
How was Nox conceived?
Nox was born out of a desire to connect the dots between sex and self-care. Sex toys and accessories are mostly marketed in this silly, condescending way — as vulgar and something to be embarrassed about. We believe sex and masturbation are important forms of self-care, and that toys should be marketed and treated just like any other lifestyle product — something beautiful that brings you pleasure. That’s why we carry not only a beautiful collection of toys and care products, but also what we call ‘mood setters‘ like candles, tinctures and bath soaks.
Do you think there is a stigma around masturbation? How are sex shops like yours breaking this stigma?
Definitely! Women, in particular, are taught to masturbate in secret (if they’re even taught anything about it at all), and lots of women aren’t even comfortable talking to their friends or partners about their bodies and habits. There’s also a lot of confusion and stigma around what your parts should look like or how they should work. Our brand is focused on women, but womanhood is a state of being that includes biological women, trans women, straight and gay individuals of all body types and ages. Just as there are many kinds of womanhood, there is no ‘right’ kind of female body and no ‘right’ way to masturbate. Our approach is rooted in self-care and safe, healthy exploration — everyone deserves to relax and experience sexual pleasure, and our goal is to provide the best products, a calm shopping experience and offer tons of information.
Is there anything you wish you were taught in sex ed but weren’t?
Yes, that the clitoris actually exists! But seriously, in sex ed the idea of pleasure is glazed over or even flat-out ignored. The more young women know about their bodies and the more they’re encouraged to explore themselves the more they’ll feel in control when it does come to partnered sex. Knowledge is power!
What are your favorite products and why?
We love the Sola Cue — it’s a soft, contoured g-spot wand that’s fully submersible in the tub. We’ve also just started carrying the Lelo Sona, which we’re very excited about. It’s a touch-free massager that stimulates through sonic waves. It’s unlike anything we’ve ever used. Our favorites from the ‘mood’ section of the shop might be the Love Thyself Bod Oil from Fat and the Moon (it smells like spicy cloves) and the Cedar + Woodsmoke candle from Wary Meyers. We keep our selection small and curated because we know how overwhelming shopping for sex toys can be. If it’s in the shop, we love it.
What advice would you give to someone who is totally unfamiliar with sex toys and their own sexual wellness? Where would they begin?
This is super common. Our “Best Vibes for Newbies” piece is the most read article on our journal. It’s okay to start small. The online marketplace is crammed with thousands of products and if you’re not familiar, it can be really hard to know what you want. Our beginner notes to exploring your sexual wellness would be to try a bullet, like the Rumbly Rabbit Bullet or a pocket rocket like the Gaia Eco-Vibe. See what you like and work your way up from there… and use lube! We love hearing from our community and are happy to answer any questions they might have, even if they’re not ready to buy something.