It feels like years since I last reviewed a sex toy subscription. The last one was the Unbound Box and that was all the way back in May. I guess the Erotic Advent Calendar I ploughed through in December was kinda similar but that was mostly a lucky dip of products. When I think ‘subscription box’ I imagine a curated selection of quality products that you can have delivered to your door on a regular basis. One such selection is the Hand Pilot Recreational Pilot Box.
Firstly, I love the name of this shop. I love the design of their site. But most of all, I love Hand Pilot’s genuinely unique, unique selling point; their subscription is almost entirely targeted at our bepenised brethren. Vulvacentric subscriptions and ‘couples’ boxes are relatively easy to find but you’d be hard pushed to find another company that offers boxes of treats picked out to pamper the old penis.
Even then, those ‘couples’ boxes are often aimed at heterosexual couples and are mostly geared toward pleasing the pussy with a cock ring chucked in as an afterthought. The idea seems to be that getting to fuck at some stage in proceedings is treat enough for the todger.
Okay, what do Hand Pilot offer? Like most subscription services I’ve come across, they have a ‘singles’ box and a ‘couples’ one. These are called ‘Flying Solo’ and ‘With a Co-Pilot’. It does appear to be a hetero service at first glance (the co-pilot in the image for that option is a woman) but never fear; if you’re in a same-sex relationship all you have to do is indicate this on the order screen and your box will be prepared to suit your specific needs.
Hand Pilot offers a tiered subscription with each type of box having three ‘experience levels’ to choose from:
- Recreational Pilot – $19.00 per month
- Captain – $49 per quarter
- Commander $79 per quarter
Before I forget to mention it, I’ll tell you that ‘experience level’ is just a way of asking how often you want your boxes delivered (and how much you want to pay) that’s in keeping with the pilot theme. Actual experience doesn’t even come into it.
All of the solo boxes will contain a penis masturbator, beginning with simple sleeves and moving on to the big fancy stuff as you fork out more cash. In the higher tiers, you can expect to see big brands like Fleshlight or Hydromax, and stuff like Picobong in the co-pilot box. With the first tier you save around $5 on the price of the goods, and on the others, there’s a typical saving of $20. Delivery is included with each box so what you see is what you pay, though I believe that if you live outside of the US you will have shipping to pay.
So, as I live in the UK, Hand Pilot offered to ship me their Recreational Pilot Box, just so I could get a feel for their service and bring you lovely folks this review. I have to say that delivery was swift! I think it only took about a week to get here. The packaging was discreet with nothing to tip off my postie about the wanky goodness he was toting around in his satchel.
I get loads of toys that are marketed at my junk, so I chose to think of the Fella and picked the Flying Solo option. When it arrived and after I peeked inside, I handed it to him and explained that he was using all the things in it without me. He was like, “Wait, I’ve got to use all this by myself?”
I told him, “Yes, I want you to approach it as if you were single, and I want your ‘Flying Solo’ opinion.”
I got wrong for doing air quotes and then (doing air quotes, the big hypocrite) he said, “My ‘solo opinion’ is this; if I gotta wank alone it better come with porn.”
In a cute little bag printed with the Hand Pilot logo the Fella found the following products:
Screaming-O Jackits MANstrubation Sleeve
“Is this for strokin’ my dick?”
“Yes, honey, it is.”
“Good I like strokin’ my dick. MANsturbation is a stupid word, though. They should definitely bin that.”
The Fella has long been a fan of Tenga Eggs, but in recent months I’ve noticed a steady decline in how often he uses them. I had the impression that, ever since he got his first Fleshlight, he’s started to resent toys he has to chuck away after a few uses. But after talking to him about the Jackits Sleeve I discovered that he’s been having sensitivity issues. For some reason, even his fave eggs have come to feel uncomfortably restrictive on the head of his cock.
When he popped off to the bath he took the sleeve with him. I perched on the edge of the bed and wondered how he would get on with this new style. With its 2” opening and 3” length it’s immediately bigger than a Tenga Egg so I was confident that there wouldn’t be any overstimulating tightness. The inside of the Jackit is smooth around the domed end, and rows of well-pronounced nubs line the bottom half. Again, this keeps the stimulating textures away from his head.
According to the packaging, Jackits are made from SEBS, which is a form of TPE with added styrene. I think that’s what gives this type of material its funky stank. If it was going in a body it wouldn’t have been used, but going on a body (not mine, I don’t like it) isn’t so bad.
When the Fella emerged from the bathroom he was grinning. “That’s much better than the eggs,” he announced. He went on to explain that he didn’t feel any discomfort or constriction at all. The larger size meant he could twist and turn the sleeve freely, and the fact that he didn’t have to stretch it to make it useable made all the difference. Apparently, it’s a bit like using a tube type masturbation sleeve except with a closed end. That makes clean up easy cos it catches all the mess. Also, he loves that the ridges on the outside (which I didn’t even notice) really helped with his grip while playing with wet hands.
So, that’s top marks for the Jackits MANsturbation Sleeve!
Linx Tickler Ring
“What the fuck’s the point of this?”
“It’s a cock ring.”
“I know what it is, clever shite, I mean why is it here? One, it’s crap, and two, why add something to a solo kit that makes a dick harder for longer? I’ve got nobody to perform for but myself. If I’m spanking it I don’t want it to last, I want it done.”
No, he isn’t all that kinky when it comes to masturbation. Once upon a time, I would have agreed with him, though. Why add a cock ring to a solo wanking kit? Well, it’ll be good for edging, right? It would be good for stamina training. And, I don’t know about y’all, but if I had my own cock I would want it to be as hard and as impressive as I could get it regardless of whether it’s gonna be seen by anyone else. And that’s what cock rings help with.
Except not this one. It’s another TPE product and it’s covered in bumps. You know, the ones that are supposed to stimulate a vulva but don’t? As the opening is only 0.75” before stretching I expected it to be quite tight, but apparently ‘it feels like nothing’. The Fella tells me it doesn’t feel sturdy enough or tight enough. When he tried to put it on dry it tugged uncomfortably, and then once lube got involved he felt like it just wanted to roll up his shaft and pop off the end. I wanted to see how much it stretched and if it shrank back to its original size after use, but I couldn’t Why? After the first use, he tossed it in the bathroom bin. That says everything, don’t you think?
Skins Powerect Male Enhancement Cream
“Ella, this cream says ‘perform with confidence even after a night out’. Can I have an extra night out so we can test these bold, bold claims when I get home?”
He did have his extra night out. Rather than watch the Super Bowl at home he watched it in a pub. But we didn’t get a chance to try this Skins Powerect Cream when he got home cos he was off the map. We did try it the next night when he was suffering, though, and nothing much happened.
The Fella hasn’t ever had issues getting or retaining an erection, though, so I don’t think we could give it a fair test. It might work for someone who needs it to. That said, topical creams and herbal supplements have always seemed like placebos to me. Confidence givers rather than chemical performance enhancers. In my experience, the way cock creams, stay sprays and lubes work is to desensitise the penis so that less stimulation is felt, in turn making orgasm easier to postpone. On the rare occasion one of these has worked in terms of desensitising the Fella has actually struggled to keep his erection, cos he can’t feel enough stimulation to keep him hard.
Something I must mention here is the shopping list of ingredients that went into making this product. I won’t list them all, but I will count them. Thirty-three. Most of it is natural extracts of stuff like aloe, sunflower seed, green tea, and ginseng. But there are some sugars and perfumes in there, too.
Wet Elite Hybrid Personal Lubricant
“What’s in this bottle, lube? Is it okay to go in your mouth?”
“Why would you want it in your mouth?”
“I didn’t say my mouth, lamb chop, I said yours.”
Hybrid lubes are a blend of water-based and silicone, combined to give you the best of both worlds. A non-staining, long lasting, slippery lube that works well as an all-rounder, covering all kinds of penetration and masturbation.
The bottle supplied in the Hand Pilot box is a small 30ml, but it does last quite a while. This is the one the Fella took into the bath with his Jackits stroker. He reported that a little went a long way. It didn’t wash off immediately even though it is water soluble.
In my own personal testing, I found it to be an odd one. It seems to be really thick at first, but after a bit of warming up, it becomes really thin and runny. Great for handjobs, if you like them messy.
However, the answer to the Fella’s initial question is a very loud NO. The Wet Elite Hybrid Lube is NOT good for giving oral. Well, I suppose it could be for people who like drinking sugar syrup straight from a bottle. It’s fucking vile, folks. I don’t think I’ve ever tasted a lube with so much sweetness to it, not even flavoured ones. This is why I’ve not used it to give him a blowjob, and why I will never use it for penetrative sex.
Pipedream Toy Cleaner
“Here you go. I know I’m supposed to be using all the things solo but we both know that this is your department.”
Yes, I’m the toy cleaner in Scandarella house. And I like that Hand Pilot included a bottle of cleaner in their box. This one is a small 29ml bottle of clear liquid that has a pleasant, mild scent and cleans a masturbator quickly and efficiently. Not having a spray nozzle makes it a bit of a pain in the arse to use without spillages occurring, but if you’re careful I reckon you’ll get at least a week of cleaning out of it.
Sir Richards Ultra-Thin Condom
“Babe, chuck this in the ‘unplanned anal’ basket, please.”
The only time we ever use condoms as a couple is if anal is happening without preparation. I must admit that I’m unsure why a condom was supplied in a solo masturbation kit. Is it a ‘just in case a friend pops by’ kinda thing? Is it there so a wank can be had and then the ensuing mess be wrapped in a tissue and chucked in the bin with no need to clean the toy? I just don’t know. I’m thinking the best reasons for it are: someone with no condom experience can practice putting one on swiftly and securely, or that they can practice keeping an erection with the desensitising effects condoms can sometimes cause.
Wet Platinum Silicone & Swiss Navy Premium Arousal Lube Sachets
“Yay, more lube samples for the big lube sample box that’s taking up half my drawer.”
Yes, sarcasm is his middle name. But in all fairness, we do have a really big box of lube sachets, lol. I’ll freely admit that we haven’t tried these ones. We have so many lubes on the go I tend to keep samples for emergencies. Still, sachets are a good addition to a subscription box. They can be slipped into a bag/wallet/pocket/bedside drawer so you’re always prepared. And they’re great to have on hand in case you run out of lube between subscription deliveries.
So, is the Hand Pilot worth your time? I’d say definitely yes. I know the savings aren’t massive, but you do get a good selection of products picked out for you so you don’t have to worry about making choices. Delivery is swift, and also free, so there are no hidden costs to suck back your saving.
While I do think the Recreational Pilot Box is the most basic of the basic, it’s still a good choice for the casual masturbator who just fancies something a bit different every now and again. If you’re more serious about your sex toys I recommend upgrading to one of the quarterly boxes. Once you’re paying a bit more you get more, in terms of quality if not quantity. Up in the higher tiers, you’re looking at Blewits, and Fleshlights, and Pipedream PDX products. All long lasting, decent products if you look after them properly.
If you’d like to give Hand Pilot a shot, click the banner below and go sign up now.