The sex survey: Women more likely to use sex toys

Seven in ten female respondents aged 25 to 34 said they have used them

The majority – 58 per cent – of sexually active people who responded to The Irish Times sex survey have used sex toys, with women slightly more likely to use them than men.

Sex toys are most popular among bisexual women and lesbians, with about 80 per cent of those who participated in the survey using them.

Females aged between 25 and 34 were most likely to use sex toys (seven out of 10).

"The growing comfort with sex and one's own body would indicate a freedom to use sex toys, and the fact that women use them slightly more than men demonstrates their sense of freedom in their sexuality," says psychotherapist Trish Murphy.

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Sexologist Emily Power Smith adds: "I'm delighted the figures are so high. However, I know that a lot of women have tried toys and because it was not suited to their needs or they weren't sure how to use it, the toy ended up in the back of a drawer."

The survey was carried out among self-selecting individuals. It is not a weighted survey and does not purport to be accurately representative of the wider population, biased as it is towards certain age groups (over two-thirds of those who took the survey were between the age of 24 and 50) and towards those who are more sexually active. Therefore all results should be seen as indicative rather than definitive.