Throughout the past few years, folks have increasingly woken up to the value of pleasure for all anatomies, how masturbation can help facilitate that pleasure, and the way pleasure tools can assist in the experience. And in late 2022, Well+Good predicted that the latest iteration of the pleasure revolution would see businesses featuring intimate-care products and sex toys front and center in their brick-and-mortar stores. It appears we were on the money: Maude, the inclusive intimate care line known for its understated, powerful vibrator, just became the first intimate-care and sexual-wellness company to sell its products in Sephora’s physical stores.
The brand’s launch in more than 260 Sephora locations—with four of its products—is a big win for bringing sexual-wellness and intimate-care products out of the shadows, away from stigma, and into the hands of more people, says Maude founder and CEO Éva Goicochea. “We’ve always believed that [the intimate care category] needed to be in a prestige retailer because when you only see it in sex shops and drugstores, it continues the discomfort and the commodification of the category,” she says.“But when you start to see it in places in which you would buy your beloved personal-care item or your beauty products, you start to recognize that this category is just as important—context is everything in terms of evolving sexual wellness.”
How the in-store Maude launch at Sephora is a win for accessibility to intimate care
Sephora has been selling sexual-wellness products online for over a year from Maude and also Dame. And given the positive consumer reception, the move to an in-store offering is hardly surprising. In late 2022, Cindy Deily, Vice President of Skin-Care Merchandising at Sephora, told Well+Good that the sexual-wellness category is growing for the beauty retailer: “Sephora clients are actively shopping the category…We look forward to continued growth and expansion as we strive to meet the evolving needs of our clients.”
- Éva Goicochea, CEO and founder of sexual wellness marketplace Maude
There's more good news for consumers hungry for intimate-care products: According to market projections, the global sexual wellness market—which includes things like sex toys, condoms, lube, and supplements—is expected to grow from $28.22 billion this year to $44.23 billion by 2028.
While work to destigmatize intimate-care and sexual-health products is not done, Sephora selling Maude in-store is a big step forward. Maude’s products are available in other stores worldwide, but Sephora’s status as a massive purveyor of quality luxury goods is especially important to Goicochea. Housing Maude's products under that luxe umbrella, she says, helps bring intimate-care products into the mainstream and chips away the stigma associated with them.
"When you only see [intimate care products] only in sex shops and drugstores, it continues the discomfort and the commodification of the category."—Éva Goicochea, Maude's founder and CEO
The in-store launch also presents an opportunity for a wide range of customers to find what they need in one place. Goicochea points out that there’s a variety of cosmetics and skin-care options available across retailers. That is, whether you want bold or minimal makeup products, there are many brands from which to choose and venues where you can find them (think: a blush at a department store, luxury boutique, or in the aisles of the drugstore). That's not really the case right now for products related to sex and intimacy. “We should be able to have choices,” she says. With Maude products in Sephora, she's making that happen.
The four in-store Maude products at Sephora include a massage candle, lubricant, and two body wash products, which Goicochea says specifically bridge the gap between skin and body care that anyone can use. Shop them below (and keep an eye out for them next time you hit Sephora).
Shop the 4 Maude products available now in Sephora stores:
This massage candle contains skin-softening jojoba oil. It’s scented with amber, cedar leaf, clove, lemongrass, medjool date, and tonka bean.
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