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A decade of supplying adult pleasure
Revolutionary gay men’s online adult store esmale has just turned ten
PinkUk talks to esmale’s co-founder Jay
On 12 October, 2011 in southwest London, the virtual doors of online gay adult store esmale.com opened for the first time. Now, a decade later, they are still going strong with more plans on the way to ensure people can all have some adult fun with their wide range of products.
It is no mean feat to survive in this current economic and health environment, so we wanted to find out how this 100% gay-owned company became one of the most prominent online-only pleasure suppliers in the UK. We got in contact with them to have a chat and run through the decade. There was so much to talk about, so here are some of the highlights.
- How did the company come about? Well, a close friend and I had been working in the adult retail industry for a while and saw a gap in the market. We were both working hard for other people but what we really wanted was to be in control of our own future. With experience in online retail and some knowledge of the adult industry, setting up a Gay Adult Store seemed a logical step. The name esmale came about while playing with the word combination “essentially for men”. We pronounce this as E.S. – Male. Since opening our virtual doors, we have loyal customers from all walks of life and with identities from across the spectrum. It is great to see that our products are enjoyed by such a variety of people.
- What product areas are the most popular? Gosh, very hard to tell, as we have so many different products areas. We sell a lot of underwear, lube, fetish, and anal toys for man are not selling any less. Logically consumables sell the most as customers keep coming back for lube, erection pills and other similar essentials. During the pandemic we found that customers were getting a bit more experimental and started ordering more niche, fetish and electronically operated products. With all that time on their hands and not being able to leave the house, there was plenty of time to explore what your body enjoys. We also have a sister company where you can find the best poppers for the UK only. There is still a big demand for these products as well.
- Any likes and dislikes whilst running esmale? Haha, plenty of both! Running your own business is nowhere near as easy as we thought it would be. We knew it would be hard work but as an online business it is relentless and 24/7. Still, we would not change it for the world, we enjoy it a lot. The one thing we love the most is our customers. We often get calls from people who want to place an order over the phone or need some advice. As we have such a wide variety of customers, we get to hear a lot of stories and often end up having a real laugh with them. It is really satisfying to get positive feedback and to be told that some of our products have made a difference in how they experience adult fun.
- What products could you recommend if you are person on a budget and do you run any discount / sales offers? It all depends on what you are after. In each department of the shop we have a selection of premium brands but also budget options. You can filter on price so you only view items in your budget. Cheaper products are great but the premium products often last longer and might prove to be better value in the long term. We often have promotions and voucher codes. The best way to keep up-to-date is to sign up to our newsletter. We have created a code for all PinkUK users. Simply enter code PINKUK10 at the checkout and you will received an extra 10% of your order.
- How easy is to order and how long does delivery take to the UK and then further afield? Placing and order is simply, like most online retails stores these days. Just add your product to the basket and follow the check-out steps. Standard delivery is 2-3 working days in the UK. You can also select next day delivery. We ship all orders placed before 14.00 the same working day. For orders to Europe or rest of world delivery is around 4-7 days.
- Any anonymised amusing anecdote you can offer from the last decade of trading? We have plenty of customers that come with great stories about their product usage and what they get up to. Not sure I can share those here, but I can promise you they are very entertaining. We have also some celebrity clients, which again we cannot divulge. What I can tell you is that somewhere in the UK there is a room with over 100 dildos stuck firmly on the wall. Apparently, many a party has been thrown in this room, what a picture that paints 😀
- What does the future look like for esmale? Well, hopefully we can carry on as we are. It is not our ambition to conquer the world or become too big an organisation. We will continue to focus on sourcing those products that we hope our customers enjoy. It is all about putting smiles on people’s faces and helping in the exploration of adult pleasure. We have some great new technology-based toys coming in, as well as some sexy fashion and fetish gear. This will keep us busy and hopefully our customers happy.
- Finally, anything you feel we need to know? Mmmm, not sure to be honest. If there was one thing, we wish there would no longer be a stigma around using products for self-exploration and pleasure. It is nowhere near what it was but there are still people out there that feel that using toys or fetish gear is not entirely “natural”. We are hoping it is just a question of time. It is of course entirely fine to explore your body and go on a journey with your mind and body to find out what gives you pleasure and good times. You only live once, so do it well!
There you have it, a little insight from the guys at esmale. As they are celebrating a great achievement, they have discounted many products on the store so now is a good time to check out and see how their items can put a smile on your face. The discount also applies to their sister store, www.poppersupershop.com, so go and have a look.
With love from team esmale!