History of Sex Dolls

Posted by Anna Bergeron on

Sex Dolls have probably been around a lot longer than you might think. While they’ve only become mainstream in the last few decades, you can find evidence of different kinds of sex dolls throughout modern history.

Thanks to a growing level of acceptance in most societies, sex toys are no longer talked about in hushed tones or hidden in small magazine adverts. The internet especially has made it much easier to find out about almost anything that tickles your sexual fancy. But how did all begin? Let’s go back to the start and look at the origins of the humble sex doll.

The Sailor’s Friend

Our story starts in the seventeenth century. There are stories of sex aids similar to dolls in a much older period, but the first solid evidence we have is from the high seas in the 1600s. It was the height of exploration, with new lands being discovered all over the world.

These voyages could take several months at a time, so there would be some very lonely sailors on these boats. To combat their natural urges, European sailors would carry what were essentially hand puppets made of sewn leather. It was a simple matter of placing it on your hand, then going about your usual business.

They became quite famous around the world, gaining colloquial names from different places. The French called them dames de voyage, which means travel ladies. The Japanese spent a lot of time trading with Dutch, so they called them Dutch wives.

We obviously can’t go back in time to see just what these hand dolls looked like. It would probably be safe to assume though that they weren’t super realistic. They much have felt good enough though, or the sailors wouldn’t have bothered at all and just masturbated with their hands instead.

Enjoying Art in a Different Way

As we move through the years, there isn’t a lot of concrete evidence on the development of sex dolls. All we really have to rely on are stories that have stood the test of time. Many of these stories involve artists getting a little bit more intimate with their creations. Statues styled after the human form have been around since ancient times, and some of them do look very realistic.

While most of you won’t find yourself getting heated up at the sight of a sexy looking statue, there are stories of people trying to get it on with all kinds of statues. We don’t know how true the stories are, but it really wouldn’t surprise me. Though I don’t really know what the people in the stories got out of it, as I can’t believe it feels too good grinding against stone or marble, but hey, whatever floats your boat!

Early Inflatable Dolls

The largest development to start the wheels turning on the sex doll industry was the discovery of polyvinyl chloride. PVC is an incredibly lightweight and flexible material and is much cheaper to make things out of than nearly any other material used in sex toys.

PVC was the catalyst to really kick start the sex doll industry. It’s nearly impossible to know exactly where everything began as sex toys weren’t allowed to be advertised until the late sixties. Most of the evidence seems to point to the appearance of “life-like” dolls which were made in a true to life nature made in the early twentieth century.

Little is known about the development of these dolls as they still weren’t widely talked about. It’s possible that there was a thriving market even this early, and that many men around the world were enjoying their sex dolls in privacy.

The Nazi Sex Doll Project

The next time sex dolls would come to the fore was deep in the second world war. We can preface this by saying that there is no concrete proof that any of this happened. Even if it didn’t though, it’s still an interesting part of sex doll history that not too many people will have heard of before.

Deep into the second world war, the Nazi’s had troops scattered all around Europe. Many of these men hadn’t seen their loved ones in a very long time. Natural urges will always take their course though, and the men found themselves desperate for the warm embrace of a woman.

With nobody else to turn to, many of the soldiers began to frequent brothels in the occupied countries as well as taking advantage of local prostitutes. Although the extra business helped many of these women support their families with the newly enforced Reichsmark, the soldiers weren’t so lucky. Many of them began to contract sexually transmitted diseases from their frequent encounters and sleeping with different women every night helped the diseases spread even further.

So many soldiers were becoming infected with syphilis and other diseases, so the head of the S.S. Heinrich Himmler decided to take matters into his own hands. He commissioned and funded a project to provide Nazi soldiers with their own sex dolls. These would be carried around with them while posted in different countries and be able to fulfil their urges.

It’s said the Himmler and his team experimented with different materials and designs before finally settling on their ideal doll. They even asked famous actresses of the time to model for the face of the doll, although they weren’t too into the idea. In the end they went with an inflatable doll, with a face nearly completely devoid of features. It still carried the blonde hair and blue eyes that were so important to the Aryan race, but the rest of the face was left for the soldiers to be able to imagine their own loved ones whilst doing the dirty.

Ultimately the scheme was a bit of a flop. None of the soldiers wanted to carry the dolls, as they’d have been terribly embarrassed if they were to be captured. On top of that, with such a readily available pool of sexual professionals, it’s hard to imagine that a doll would be quite as satisfying.

Lifting the Veil on the Secret World of Sex Toys

In the latter half of the twentieth century, free love was all the rage. The acceptance of all things sexual carried over to the sex toy industry, and for the first time ever companies were allowed to publicly advertise their creations. The industry exploded and people all over the world were free to experiment and enjoy all of these creations.

Sex Dolls were part of this explosion and blow up dolls became more and more common amongst men. While they still weren’t completely mainstream, enough men were using them now that they wanted more. Manufacturers were keen to oblige and set to work on creating the best sex dolls they possibly could.

The Modern Sex Doll

Sex dolls available today are much more advanced than their contemporary relatives. Advancements in both materials used, and the way these dolls are built, have allowed us to make incredibly realistic looking dolls. Not only that, but they feel more real than you might think possible, especially when compared to vinyl or rubber dolls of the past.

Inflatable vinyl dolls are still available today, but these are considered the entry-level models on the market. More advanced models are made of either silicone or TPE. These are made in factories with advanced moulds made with the help of real people. Customers can completely customise their dolls, choosing height, cup size, hair colour, skin colour, and many other variables.

We’ve come a long way in the development of sex dolls, but the journey isn’t over. Manufacturers have begun integrating AI into their sex dolls to try and bring them to the next level of realism. This kind of doll is still in it’s infancy, but in a few years, we might be able to have sex robots that can fulfil our every need, both in and out of the bedroom.

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