What Is A Fleshlight: Everything You Need To Know

A Fleshlight is the most popular male masturbation sex toy of all time. Discover Fleshlight’s origins, how it works, the different types available, and more.
aerial photograph of many fleshlight product boxes laid out on a wooden floor to display the varied product range, including classics, fleshlight girls, vibrating fleshlights, quickshots, and accessories
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Updated:April 2024

Fleshlight is a type of pocket pussy or masturbator that provides a unique and satisfying experience that’s as close to real vaginal, anal, or mouth play as you can get with a sex toy.

Watch our video below to learn more about them, quickly:

Key Takeaways:

  • Fleshlights got their name from their primary design, which resembles an industrial flashlight — the cap on the end is removed to reveal a soft, skin-like orifice (vagina, anus, mouth, or nondescript) and the interior sleeve generally accommodates the length of a penis.
  • Over the years, Fleshlights have become available in a variety of types and styles to suit every preference, including double-ended strokers and models fashioned after the anatomy of popular porn stars.
  • Made from body-safe materials, Fleshlight sleeves are crafted from the company’s proprietary Super Skin, which is mineral-oil based, while the exterior casing is ABS plastic.
  • Fleshlights are used similarly to any other pocket pussy or masturbator: a penis is inserted through the orifice and into the sleeve, while the toy strokes up and down its shaft.

With its realistic feel, extensive variety, and discreet design, Fleshlight delivers unparalleled pleasure and versatility.

We’ll take you on a journey through the fascinating world of Fleshlights, exploring their invention, design, materials, types, pros, cons, and use, as well as tips on choosing the perfect one and caring for it properly.

What Is A Fleshlight?

photograph of product tester justin holding two fleshlights, one in each hand, while looking at the viewer

Known for its discreet flashlight-like design hiding a sexy orifice for penetration inside, Fleshlight allows users to indulge in their fantasies without raising any eyebrows.

Who Invented The Fleshlight — And When?

Invented by Steve Shubin, Fleshlight has revolutionized the male sex toy industry, becoming the go-to choice for men seeking a pleasurable and realistic experience — because that’s what inspired the idea for them in the first place.

During his wife’s pregnancy, Shubin struggled with being unable to have sexual intercourse with her after their doctor advised them to abstain for the duration.

Point-blank, he asked her what she thought about him using an object as a temporary replacement for sex.

From there, he considered what could happen if that problem continued — if sex was not an option at all (forever), and how many men might be facing something similar.

They started the company with an investment of $50,000, received the first patent in 1995, and the rest is essentially history.

How Is A Fleshlight Made?

Although the Super Skin material used to craft Fleshlights is proprietary, which we’ll talk about later, they’re made in a factory setting — as one would expect.

Masturbation sleeve molds are set up in a way that essentially pairs two separate forms together — an external orifice and an internal texture — before liquid Fleshlight material is piped to the mold, by hand.

But you’re likely wondering how the molds are made in the first place — particularly for the hyper-realistic orifices or dildos they offer.

Fleshlight explains the process, but it basically involves:

  1. Female models masturbate with a vibrator to increase genital blood flow, while male models mentally prepare to maintain an erection for 15 minutes if their penis is being used for the casting
  2. A series of photos and measurements are taken of the area(s) being molded
  3. A green substance (similar to silicone) is applied to the vulva or anus; in the case of dildo mold creation, the male inserts his penis into a canister filled with the stuff, keeping it in place for 15 minutes

As of 2020, digital scanning has largely replaced the traditional molding process.

Although hand-made molds can still be useful, they are not mandatory.

After the molds or scans are complete, a sculptor goes to work to make an exact replica of the orifice or body part.

The internal sleeve textures are created using digital designs that are crafted into a separate mold.

The two elements — orifice and sleeve texture — are paired together to create the complete mold that’s poured in the Fleshlight factory.

What Does A Fleshlight Look Like?

photograph of product tester justin holding the riley reid utopia fleshlight to show its opening, demonstrating how easy it is to use

The exterior design of a Fleshlight pocket pussy is nothing short of genius, modeled to resemble a standard flashlight (albeit a rather large one), and generally featuring a black or iridescent white case, depending on the model.

Since their initial invention, Fleshlights have become available in other variations that look less like flashlights, however.

A perfect example is the Quickshot, which is a shorter version of the stroker that features double-ended openings.

The magic, however, lies within the inner sleeve of the Fleshlight, which is crafted from the company’s proprietary Super Skin.

Crafted to replicate the sensation of real skin, the sleeve material offers an experience that’s both lifelike and satisfying — which is why it’s a top selling male masturbation tool.

With its soft and supple texture, the Fleshlight is designed to mimic the feel of real vaginal intercourse, anal sex, or blowjobs, providing a level of sexual pleasure unparalleled by other male masturbators.

Whether you choose a vulva, anus, or mouth, the orifice looks like the real thing — and it’s about as close as you can get to real intercourse without a partner, too.

What Does A Fleshlight Feel Like?

photograph of product tester justin holding the riley reid utopia fleshlight while touching the surface of the material

Every person’s opinion about what a Fleshlight feels like is going to be different based on their experience and sexual activity with it.

I’ll be honest — the Super Skin isn’t silicone and you can definitely tell, especially when compared to other sex toys.

It’s soft, but the surface has a slight tackiness — where silicone is generally silky smooth to the touch, Super Skin is almost sticky.

That said, applying cornstarch (or Fleshlight Renewal Powder) removes the tacky surface texture immediately.

There’s a lot of “bounce” to the pocket pussy material, too — it’s fleshy and beyond squeezable.

(In fact, taking the sleeve out of the case will show you just how pliable the material actually is.)

During use with lube, however, it feels amazing.

It’s a soft yet exciting sensation, made even more thrilling by the textures hidden deep inside the sleeve.

I honestly didn’t know if my penis was going to be able to tell the difference between textures throughout the sleeve, but it’s certainly noticeable.

I like to think of it as an adventure for your dick — a gateway to new sensations (and orgasms).

Personally, I’ve found the anal models to be the tightest, but all of the ones I’ve tried have offered something new and exciting — and they feel great.

Do Men Like Fleshlights?

photograph of product tester justin wearing a sly grin after unboxing the riley reid utopia fleshlight

Well, that ultimately depends on who you ask but yes, many men enjoy using Fleshlights — and pocket pussies, in general.

I’ll admit — I wasn’t sure about them myself until I purchased and tried my first one.

I didn’t understand all the hype, especially when jerking off is easy enough to do (and free).

Beyond that, the idea of using a disembodied vagina (or anus) felt strange to me — and I had an aversion to it, especially knowing that some Fleshlights are modeled after porn actresses.

The truth is, they give their consent — and make money off of it — so I was able to get over that aversion and enjoy what Fleshlight has to offer (which is a lot of pleasure).

I personally like them because they feel so much better than jerking off — it feels like a treat.

It’s also a form of self-care, in a way, being able to enjoy myself in that manner whenever I want.

And that’s the draw of the Fleshlight, I think: pleasure when you need or want it, convenience, and discretion.

They’re not going to be for everyone — no sex toy is — but now I understand why men like them so much.

Types Of Fleshlights (And Their Cost)

three panel image of different fleshlights including a mouth boost, original pink lady, and the riley reid quickshot

Fleshlight’s extensive range of pocket pussies and masturbators (including build-your-own options) ensures that there’s something for just about everyone with a penis.

Whether you’re seeking a simple, classic experience or looking to explore new and exciting sensations that’ll knock your socks off, Fleshlight has you covered.

Types of Fleshlights available (and their prices*):

*Pricing is accurate at the time of publication.

Each type of Fleshlight is designed to offer a wholly unique experience, catering to different preferences and desires — whatever they happen to be.

The original (classic) Fleshlight provides a realistic sensation that’s perfect for those seeking the most basic experience, with both textured and untextured interior sleeves.

Fleshlight Girls and Fleshjack Boys are modeled after the anatomy of popular porn stars’ vaginas, anuses, or both (in many cases).

Every Girls and Boys Fleshlight has a unique texture within the sleeve — and like snowflakes, no two are exactly alike.

The great news is that each model provides a “map” of the internal texture on the box (and on the Fleshlight website), so you can see exactly what you’d be feeling if you buy and use it.

We know you’re wondering right now — and no: the internal textures of Fleshlight Girls and Fleshjack Boys are not modeled after the actors’ actual insides.

Only the external mold of their anatomy is used.

(Which honestly is a good thing…can you imagine what the manufacturing process would involve otherwise?)

While we’re on the subject of Fleshjack Boys, there are even Fleshlight dildos available, with many of them molded from male porn actors’ bodies — complete with a foreskin, if they have one!

For those looking to enhance their sexual performance, the Fleshlight Stamina Training Unit is a game-changer, available in both full-size and Quickshot versions.

If you crave a more invigorating experience, the vibrating Fleshlight (Vibro) is sure to hit the spot.

For those who prioritize discretion, the discreet Fleshlight is a versatile and covert option for various sexual activities — alone or with a partner in tow.

Pros And Cons Of A Fleshlight

photograph of product tester justin making a funny face while looking at the riley reid fleshlight sleeve in his hand with text overlay that reads: nothing brings you back to reality quite like removing a fleshlight sleeve from its case after dropping a load

Aside from the obvious pleasure factor, using a Fleshlight offers numerous benefits and advantages.

These may include pleasure, improved stamina and sensitivity, enhanced pelvic floor muscle function, and even stress relief.

But they’re not without their share of disadvantages, too.

Fleshlight Pros

The main advantage of using a Fleshlight over traditional masturbation is that it provides a much more realistic experience with superior stimulation.

Additionally, it can help someone achieve and maintain an erection more easily than manual stimulation.

Fleshlight pros include:

  • Being able to fulfill your sexual desires easily and discreetly.
  • They provide a unique masturbation experience when compared to your hand (especially if that’s the only way you’ve jerked off in the past).
  • Fleshlights can provide a sensation that’s realistic enough when a partner isn’t available for vaginal, anal, or oral sex.
  • They offer a variety of different sleeves that can make masturbating a fun and unique experience every time
  • When STIs are a concern, they’re a good way to enjoy sex without involving another person at all.
  • Fleshlights crafted to resemble the anatomy of your favorite porn stars can fulfill sexual fantasies you have about them — especially if you watch their films while using their stroker.
  • Over time, you might start to notice an improvement in your overall stamina — in the bedroom, or even during masturbation.
  • Fleshlights are discreet (they look like a flashlight, after all) and they’re easy to hide away between uses.
  • Branded Fleshlights are made from body-safe materials and crafted with durability in mind, especially when compared to less expensive knockoffs.

One of the most significant benefits of using a Fleshlight is its potential for stamina training and sensitivity improvement.

By incorporating a Fleshlight into your intimate routine, you can develop better control and performance during intercourse, ultimately leading to more satisfying and enjoyable experiences for both you and your partner.

The stamina training unit is specifically designed to help men who experience premature ejaculation or who simply wish to prolong their time in bed.

By practicing male masturbation with a Fleshlight, you can develop greater control over your arousal and ejaculation, allowing you to last longer and enjoy more pleasurable encounters — alone or with a partner.

Fleshlight Cons

Perhaps the biggest (and most obvious) disadvantage of Fleshlights is that they’re a sex toy and as such, they require cleaning and maintenance — far more than is typically needed if you’re simply jerking off with your hand.

Fleshlight cons include:

  • Care, cleaning, and maintenance, which is “easy” enough but still involves a bit of work — the sleeve must be removed, everything needs to be washed AND dried thoroughly, and treatment with cornstarch or Fleshlight Renewal Powder is likely between uses.
  • Failure to stay on top of the cleaning and maintenance could lead to mold, mildew or bacterial growth within the sleeve, which can be a health hazard and can also potentially ruin your toy.
  • You must use lube with them, otherwise, your intimate parts might be in for a dose of chafing or irritation
  • You’re limited only to using water-based lubricants, as oil-based or silicone-based products can degrade the materials.
  • The up-front costs involved; after all, your hand is free — and a Fleshlight is not.

While it’s true that Fleshlights have their share of cons — and they might not be for everyone — they can be fantastic additions to any masturbation session or partner play.

I’ll admit — I wasn’t thrilled about the prospect of the cleaning and maintenance involved with using (and keeping) a Fleshlight.

I soon realized, however, that it was really not as bad as I’d thought it would be.

Whether a Fleshlight is right for you — that’s a question only you can answer.

Choosing Your Perfect Fleshlight

photograph of product tester justin smelling the riley reid utopia fleshlight after unboxing it

With so many options and variations available, choosing the perfect Fleshlight can be a daunting task.

Some of our favorite Fleshlights include:

Take into account the size of your penis, along with the desired sensation(s), color, and opening type you prefer to identify the Fleshlight that is perfect for you.

Fleshlights are designed to accommodate pretty much any penis size — although the tightness may vary based on the type you choose.

For instance, if you have a smaller penis (or simply seek a tight-ass fit), the anal Fleshlights tend to have a much thinner canal inside, which can fit more snugly around your dick during use.

You might also enjoy using a Quickshot or a Fleshskin, rather than a full-sized model, because you’ll fill more of it up when your penis is inserted.

(And the head of your penis might even poke out through the other end, providing a sexy visual in the process — and you can also enjoy visual stimulation when using clear or transparent Fleshlights.)

If you’re seeking something to help you improve your sexual stamina, however, any one of Fleshlight’s Stamina Training Units will work and they’re available in full-size and Quickshot models.

My best advice?

Visit the Fleshlight website or any other trusted Fleshlight vendor and just look through the available models to see what tickles your fancy.

Check out customer comments (you can read our review on Riley Reid right now) to see what others have said about them, and use those as your guide.

You might need to try a few Fleshlights to find your Holy Grail Pocket Pussy™ — mine is currently the Violet Myers — but trust me when I say, they’re worth it.

How To Use Your Fleshlight: Pro Tips

Using a Fleshlight, the most popular pocket pussy on the market, is pretty simple and involves these basic steps:

  1. If it shipped with a plastic stick inside the sleeve, remove it
  2. Lube the orifice and sleeve, and/or your penis
  3. Unscrew the air valve cap at the bottom if it has one (Quickshots do not)
  4. Insert your penis
  5. Tighten the Fleshlight’s air valve as necessary to create the suction you desire; if using a Quickshot, you can cover the other end with your hand if you like
  6. Stroke at the speed or intensity you enjoy
  7. Have an orgasm if that’s your goal
  8. Clean your Fleshlight by rinsing and drying it well

You can use your Fleshlight hands-free by wedging it between pillows or cushions, or by using a Fleshlight Launch, which automates the stroking for you.

There is also a shower mount available, which attaches to the wall with a suction cup for hands-free Fleshlight use, as well.

If you’re not sure about the best way to lube your Fleshlight, you’re in luck — we’ve got a video demo below to help you out:

To make the most of your Fleshlight experience, consider incorporating accessories and additional elements into your intimate play.

From warmers and shower mounts to various lubricants, these additions can help create a more immersive and pleasurable session.

By experimenting with different options, you can unlock new levels of pleasure and satisfaction with your Fleshlight — and you’re only limited by your creativity.

Using A Fleshlight If You’re Uncircumcised

Even for those who are uncircumcised, penetrating a Fleshlight is pretty similar to vaginal penetration — your foreskin will naturally pull back the same way it does during sex.

If you’re worried about your foreskin not retracting (or if you have phimosis or a tight frenulum that causes pain when it does), however, you might try wearing a snug or ultra-thin condom to help mitigate any discomfort and movement of the foreskin while using your Fleshlight.

Additionally, if a Fleshlight sleeve is ever too tight or uncomfortable, try using it without the case, which will allow the sleeve material to expand a little more freely, so it’s not as tightly confined.

Although some of the tightest Fleshlights might be uncomfortable for someone who isn’t circumcised (or has a very large penis), everything should go smoothly as long as you’re using plenty of water-based lube.

Cleaning And Maintaining Your Fleshlight

photograph of product tester justin pulling the sleeve from a fleshlight

To ensure the longevity and continued enjoyment of your Fleshlight, proper care and maintenance are absolutely essential.

As we mentioned above, that’s a slight disadvantage when it comes to Fleshlights overall — and we get it.

It sounds like a lot of effort when it’s easy enough to jerk off and wash your hands afterward.

Considering the investment you’ve made in your toy, however, you MUST take good care of it if you want it to take good care of you.

To keep your Fleshlight in the best condition, clean it thoroughly after each use, making sure to remove the inner sleeve from the case (if it has one) and rinse it with warm water.

Fleshlight offers its own brand of sex toy cleaner, called Fleshwash, which is the ONLY type of sex toy cleaner that can be used on them.

Soaps and detergents (including sex toy cleaners) can damage the Fleshlight sleeve’s material.

So rinse the inside of the sleeve well, and use Fleshwash.

The inside of your Fleshlight must be thoroughly dried, as mold and mildew can grow on the surface, especially if you live in a very warm climate like I do.

Additionally, dust the sleeve with cornstarch (or Fleshlight Renewal Powder — which is the same thing) and wipe down the exterior with a damp cloth to maintain the material’s original texture over time.

Are Fleshlights Safe And What Are They Made From?

photograph of a fleshlight sleeve with the vulva orifice facing the viewer and its case in the background

Yes — when cared for properly, well-maintained, and not shared between multiple penises, Fleshlights are safe.

Fleshlight sleeves are crafted from proprietary Super Skin material, which is derived from mineral oil — although that’s about all anyone outside the company knows for sure.

Although body-safe, the sleeve material is porous — which means it cannot be sanitized or sterilized.

Additionally, soaps and detergents cannot be used to clean a Fleshlight sleeve.

Fleshlight sells Fleshwash, which is its own special cleaning solution designed for its masturbation sleeves.

The outer casing, if a Fleshlight model has one, is made from ABS plastic, which is also body-safe.

As we mentioned above, Fleshlight sleeves cannot be sanitized, which means they shouldn’t be shared between partners or penises.

Although wearing a condom while using a Fleshlight can mitigate contact with bodily fluids between partners (lowering the risk of STI transmission), it’s generally not a good idea to share your toy with someone else unless you’re sure they have a clean bill of health.

DIY Fleshlights — Can You Make Your Own?

aerial photograph of a diy fleshlight made from a pringles can, sponges, and glove

Fleshlights come with a price tag — that isn’t news to anyone — but you might be wondering if you can DIY your way into some homemade pleasure.

As it turns out, you can.

You can make DIY Fleshlights from:

We’ll be honest here: not all of them are going to be winners.

The best ones, in our experience so far, include those made from socks, Pringles cans, towels, sponges, and toilet paper (yes, really).

They came together easily and actually held together pretty well once made.

Gloves and condoms were okay (enough) but lacked stability — at one point, our blown-up condom got away from us and sailed off into the air…

Balloons and cornstarch were, by far, the biggest fails of the bunch.

Our balloons popped and the cornstarch really left a lot to be desired — and a huge mess, adding insult to injury.

Closing Thoughts

Whether you’re seeking a lifelike sensation, improved stamina, or simply a unique and exciting experience, Fleshlight offers a world of possibilities for enhancing your love life and elevating your pleasure to new heights.

By incorporating a Fleshlight into your intimate routine, you can unlock new levels of satisfaction, both for yourself and your partner, and there’s something for just about everyone with a penis to enjoy.