Spark

Women of Sextech want to see more women in sex tech

Transforming the sex tech industry one female CEO at a time.
A group of CEOs at a Women of Sextech meeting. (Cindy Gallop )

It's time for Silicon Valley to stop being so prudish when it comes to sex tech for women.

That's the view of a group of female CEOs, who have been meeting regularly with the mission of increasing female-founded startups--and decreasing the stigma of female sexuality.

Polly Rodriguez is the CEO of the women's sexual wellness company Unbound Box, and one of the founders of the collective Women of Sextech.
Polly Rodriguez (Jim Hobart)

She and her peers realized that there were not enough women in the sex tech industry, so they decided to get together to change the way women view and shop for their sexual health.

Polly cites some of the numerous challenges facing women entrepreneurs in the sex tech industry, including getting a bank loan or a payment processor.

"People make a blanket assumption that the historical adult industry is what it's always has been and what it always will be," says Polly. "If that's what I equated the industry to be, I would not want to invest in it."  

Yet, Polly and her peers are proof that things are changing, and highlight the need for more women in the industry.

"Women are half of the population and half of the people shopping in this category," she says.

"When there are no women making the products in the marketplace for the people who are shopping in it, you're not going to have that [empathetic] perspective."

A Women of Sextech meeting. (Dwayne Campbell)

The Women of Sextech want to transform how female-focused sex products are perceived.

"We should sell it like a health and beauty brand, not like this industry that needs to be in the shadows," says Polly.

"When you elevate the conversation, the branding and the shopping experience, then all of a sudden you make it okay for people to engage in conversation and shop in this category."

Ultimately, the group is hoping to help women become more comfortable with their sexuality.

"I think sexuality is one of the last frontiers where we don't talk about what women need," says Polly.

"And so, to me, the Women of Sextech genuinely and truly are pushing the ball forward when it comes to liberating women."

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