COVID-19 has shifted everyone’s lives in ways that we never would have expected: emotionally, physically and financially. Typical social behaviors have taken a major turn. With places like bars and restaurants closed, many have turned to alternative means to socially interact and date.
Many people are turning to online events like virtual workout classes and dance parties in an attempt to fill their need for communication. For example, dating apps like Tinder and Bumble have seen a major spike in users and time spent on conversations. Chief Executive of Match Group (which oversees Tinder, Match, Meetic, OkCupid, Hinge, Pairs, PlentyOfFish and OurTime), Sarmistha Dubey said in an interview online dating has exploded in the wake of COVID-19. The average number of daily messages increased by nearly 30% from February to April across all of Match’s platforms. Additionally, dating apps have seen a particular increase in users with women under the age of 30. Match Group’s stock, $MTCH is outperforming the stock market, up over 20% in 2020, at the time of publishing.
Is it any surprise that an industry that’s seen a major spike with people being forced to stay at home is the sex toy industry?
With quarantine restricting social interactions for the last few months, couples and singles alike have had to adjust their routines. Many couples are now in a newfound long-distance relationship due to this separation. But this separation has made way for a new relationship to blossom. There is a field of sex toys, teledildonics, suited for this particular dilemma. Teledildonics is a term given to describe interactive, internet-connected sex toys in which partners are able to control the actions of their partner’s toy.
Couples are not the only ones investing in new toys. Many singles have been seeking out the aid of sex toys for “solo” activity. Simply put, masturbation is literally the safest option for people seeking out sexual satisfaction, as people can no longer safely meet new partners.
The New York Health Department advisory even said in a statement March 27, “You are your safest sex partner. Masturbation will not spread COVID-19, especially if you wash your hands (and any sex toys) with soap and water for at least 20 seconds before and after sex.”
Adam & Eve have seen a major increase in online sales since lockdown began. For each day of the first week since lockdown began, Adam & Eve experienced a 30% spike in sales in comparison to 2019. However, numbers have yet to show whether the online sales have helped compensate or override the financial loss from the closing of brick-and-mortar stores during this time.
As states begin to open up again and test out new social-distancing measures, it will be a long time before we can truly feel at ease interacting and dating as we did prior to COVID-19. For the time being, many are still taking extra precautions and choosing to date from the safety of their homes or to engage in more “solo-time” or virtual sexual activities like sexting.