After dealing with the hot mess that is COVID for the past two years, one of the questions that we always get asked is "Why start a business now?" Followed by the kind "You must be crazy!"
Well yes, we have to be a bit out of it to start a sex shop with all of the competition out there but I came to a realization. What is out there that makes me feel welcome in a sex shop? What exists for a queer plus size person of color? The million dollar answer? Not much. I never saw myself in the big box stores or online. I never knew how important this would be until later in life.
Search engines can be a blessing and a curse. A few simple words can get you exactly where you want to be or you can descend down the vast rabbit hole of the internet. What I did was narrow it down to brands that were "queer friendly" and "size inclusive." I didn't mind paying a bit extra for getting an item that is representative of who I am. My recommendation is to find the product first. Once you find the product that you want, find who sells it and see if the store aligns with what you want and what you believe it.
You'll notice in June, the corporations break out the big guns and use the buzz words such as "Pride" "Gay Friendly" "Inclusive." But if it truly matters to you, do a little digging. Sure, who doesn't love a sale but most queer friendly shops have a variety of discounts combined with free shipping. Bottom line, take the time. Not only will you wind up with exactly what you want but the shop that you're getting it from will thank you.