The Sex Shop Industry Is Testing Chinese Values

Chinese Values and the Sex Shop Industry

The largest producer of sex toys in the world is China.  Allegedly 70% of all adult products sold are Chinese origin.  With those numbers, you would think that sex toys were an accepted part of Chinese Values.

Up until a few years ago, a sex shop was not easy to locate in China.  That began to change as Mom and Pop stores opened with a few products and have exploded as larger players began to enter the market.

In Beijing, over 5000 sex shop s have allegedly opened, although they are easy to miss.  Some visitors had trouble locating the stores, even when knowing what streets they were on.  These sex toys sellers are attempting to maintain a low profile as sex is still considered a taboo subject that is not to be discussed.

The proliferation of sex shops is testing the sex taboo.  The more shops = the more employees = equals the more people who support families on money from the sale of sex toys.  Money can change public mores as it is now changing Chinese values toward sex stores and sex shops.

It is a strange dichotomy.  On one hand, a sex shop isn't discussed because they are taboo.  On the other hand, shop owners and workers do not have daycare, and their children spend their afternoons in the sex shops.  

China Underground did an article on sex shops with lots of pictures of different shops.  The pictures are interesting and show, as the article states, that the sex toys market is not that sexy!  The pictures are typical for small Asian own stores, where long hours are common.  It is not unusual to wake a store clerk when you want to make a purchase!

The sex toys manufactured in China are often copies or knock-offs of brands from the USA.  In a Chinese sex shop, when the store owner is asked about the best-selling products, they show the "Fleshlight" male masturbator.  The only problem, is that the Chinese version is a knock-off, as the real Fleshlight Sex Toy is manufactured in the USA.  The Chinese version is cheaper, but is made of a much lower quality, as are most sex toys from China.

The issue of sex toy quality is changing in the USA, and customers are being educated on the luxury sex toys that are made in the USA.  Education and acceptance of the sex industry has had a big affect on people and sexual acceptance in the United States.    

This acceptance and education is not occurring in China.  It is possible that these new shops are filling the needs of the average Chinese by providing education and information on sex.  

Why?  Because China is one of the countries that does not have sex education.  Part of it comes from the Communist attitude of sex separating the person from their duties to the state.

In the early years of Communism in China, love, let alone the pursuit of sexual pleasure, was seen as bourgeois, interrupting an individual’s connection to the state. 

In conversations with Chinese who have migrated to the USA, I was able to learn that the Chinese values regarding the taboo of sex is still alive and well – even though they are no longer living in China.

One lady told me:  "My husband wants me to do other sexual positions. But I say NO.  I only do one position with him on top.  I am Chinese.  He must understand that".  

With that type of sex education void, China's new sex shops might be what is needed to tip the scale and push more sex education in schools.

Perhaps Chinese values and sexual acceptance is changing, albeit a slow pace.  It is changing for young people.  The data I have is from 2010; which is a little dated, but I was unable to find newer studies.

the percentage of Chinese women who engage in premarital sex has skyrocketed in urban areas from 15 percent in 1990 to more than 50 percent in 2010

Sexual activity sells sex toys.  The more you have, the more you want to add toys, games and excitement to your sexual activities.  



A Chinese filmmaker decided to make a movie about opening sex shops out of desperation of having no job and no money.  It is a comedy, and the trailer is quite funny.  I'm sure anyone in the industry can appreciate some of it!


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