People like to call Japan the land of the rising sun, but it’s more like the land of the vending machine. Need a new face mask on the go? Some fresh panties? A baked potato? You can get it all at one of the 3.8 million “automatic sales” machines dotted across the country. And as of this month, you can even pick yourself up a disposable masturbation device from the nation’s first sex toy vending machine in Sapporo—courtesy of adult manufacturer Tenga.
Tenga describe themselves on their website as “a Japanese brand of male pleasure aids”, and their mainstay products come in a variety of shapes and sizes. There’s the Disposable Cups, “intended for one-time use only”; the Flips, which “split open to be easily washable and reusable”; and the Spinners, with a “unique texturised gel sleeve [that] twists as you insert.”
Only the Cups and Spinners are available in the new vending machines, according to Kotaku, along with an energy drink called Tenga Night Charge. But these are some of the company’s most popular products—and on August 1st, when the machines were unveiled to the public, some three hundred people showed up with their hard-earned dollars. The disposable Cups retail at 810 yen (about $11 AUD) a pop.
The vending machines are equipped with age identification systems, similar to those used on machines that sell alcohol or tobacco in Japan, Sora News 24 reports, and are tucked in a private space and hidden behind a fabric curtain in an apparent attempt to give privacy to consumers. For anyone who might be unsure of how to use the devices, there are screens with instructional videos mounted inside the booth.
Tenga has pointed out that the machines are conveniently located in an area surrounded by single-residence apartments, while Sora News 24 observes that the suburb, Susukino, is a well-known red light district. If this test location does well, it’s likely that more Tenga machines will start popping up in other places around Japan.