D-Score Case Study: A Tale of Two Apollos

D-Score Case Study: A Tale of Two Apollos

So we’ve gone over D-score before, how I arrived to the conclusion to use it as a measurement and why. Meet the reason I felt like it was absolutely necessary to have. I encourage you to read that article if you haven’t already, but if you don’t have time, D-score is the percentage difference between the girth of a toy (in area) and the girth of the median penis (1.67 square inches for the curious).

This is Apollo, another dildo from Bad Dragon. Yes, both of them. This isn’t a review however, this is a story, a story of measurement and expectations. We purchased the first one—the larger of the two—while Emily was pregnant with our last son. I don’t know how many of you have ever heard rumor of or experienced the sometimes ravenous sexual appetite of a third trimester pregnant woman at its peak but that was Emily all over and all the time. Emily had some big eyes then, and her vagina was extra cooperative because well, it was getting ready to pass a baby through it. We both immensely enjoyed her large Apollo after it arrived.

Then the baby came, and the six weeks of sexual layover that go with. We didn’t really wanna jump back in to the large toys right away even though we’d been cleared for sex by her GYN. Somehow, neither of us thought she’d be taking into account a giant toy with a 3 and a quarter inch diameter knot. Eventually we gave it a shot. She couldn’t even get the head in. We kinda anticipated this, vaginas are kinda magic and if you wait the appropriate amount of time after having a child well, sometimes it was uncomfortably tight, no complaints. So Emily slowly worked her way back up to being able to take the big boy, and let me emphasize, it was work. We both loved Apollo, I for the aesthetics and Emily for how the aggressive texturing that caused that aesthetic felt inside her, but Apollo was work now, the prep time was pretty lengthy, and we thought we might do better with the same toy but another size down the chart.

On that note. Here’s the chart.

Diameter of HeadDiameter of Knot
Large Apollo3 Inches3.25 Inches
Medium Apollo2.25 Inches2.5 Inches
Apparent Difference+33%+30%

So lets talk about that apparent difference. When we look at numbers like that, our brains tend to think linearly, it’s really just natural, even if you know that’s a geometrically scaling number, your brain just compares how much bigger one number is than the other. It’s a thing. We don’t think in volume like that.

We decided we were going to participate in the absolute madness that is the Bad Dragon Black Friday sale. If the company needs to improve anywhere it’s here. The event is always marked by frustrated customers who could never get the site to load as everyone makes a mad dash for the literally one-of-a-kind creations at 60% off and the site breaks under the load. Emily and I had three computers going just to make the attempt. We saw an Apollo in medium with an adorable coloration and we pulled the trigger immediately. Somehow we got it in the cart and hit purchase before the hold timer expired on the item (if that happens it goes back on the website and other people can grab it).

A little while later, our medium Apollo arrived and….what? I spent a lot of time trying to get the true difference in size to show up in the photo, but it has to be seen to be truly appreciated. I ended up weighing them just to try and communicate this to our readers. The medium Apollo is 500 grams (1 pound 2oz), the large is 1.2 kilograms (2 pounds 10.5 ounces).We thought we might have been the victim of some sort of mix-up, surely this was actually a small. We broke out the tape measure and sure enough, this was a medium. The length, head, and knot circumference all matched perfectly. The large sat there, dwarfing it, and we were concerned it might have been a bit too small to give Emily the feeling she’s accustomed to from that toy. It almost was. It takes a few days of regular use and gratuitous amounts of cum lube for Emily to hilt the large Apollo, and it’s a fun couple of days let me assure you, but with the medium, double penetration is on the table. Not complaining, but those are worlds apart experiences and it didn’t meet our expectations (Fortunately the medium Crackers we got in the same sale was the perfect size for this, more on that toy in the future).

This occurred during the planning phases of this blog, and I knew I’d need to come up with something to save any potential readers from the same trap. And that’s when we came up with D-Score. Let’s try that table again, comparing the two toys, but with D-score instead of diameter. We’ll throw the weight in as well.

Medium ApolloLarge ApolloApparent Difference
Head D-Score2.44.2+76%
Knot D-Score35+70%
Weight500g1200g+140%

Now that conforms with our experience a lot more closely. The difference in those two sizes is huge, and if you just look at diameter you could be tempted to think it was a minor bump, just the slight reduction we were looking for, but the D-score makes it clear, this toy is flirting with being twice as large as it’s medium counterpart in felt size.

You might not be as interested in the process of making dildo reviews this nerdy as we are, but I hope you at least had some fun with this post, if not got some useful information from it.

Have a comment or a question? Is there a topic you’d like discussed? Let me know through my contact page.

Dildo Review – Bad Dragon Echo

Dildo Review – Bad Dragon Echo

It’s that time again. This time we’re getting into the nitty gritty details of a nice little dildo we purchased from Bad Dragon. Meet the Echo.

The basic design is simple and probably the most ‘human-like’ of their offerings. It features a slightly pointed but still round head, the largest area is approximately midway down the shaft before tapering back down. There’s light texturing throughout and a little more pronounced texturing at the ‘medial ring’, that pronounced ridge a bit over halfway down in the picture. This toy is definitely built for energetic thrusting applications as opposed to something like Crackers or Apollo which seem designed for stay-in-place or slow-entry play.

As I go through this first Bad Dragon review I’m going to be talking about the options we selected and the whys of it because these designs all do things a little differently and that can even change based on the size you pick or the add-ons you select or don’t select. A large Echo with the firmest firmness does a completely different job than a small Echo in medium firmness with a cum tube[pictured].

When we were shopping for this particular toy Emily wanted something she could use either vaginally or anally as a side-kick for double penetration play. That meant it had to be comfortable to use anally. This is why we selected the small option for the size and the medium firmness. Echo doesn’t have very aggressive texturing but it does have texturing and that effect is something Emily didn’t want too loudly in the rear and picking a softer firmness reduces the impact of the texturing. She didn’t want it completely soft for vaginal play either so medium was selected. In addition, the smaller the toy the softer the relative firmness is. A large toy in soft can feel just as firm or firmer than a medium toy in medium firmness, so the medium firmness in the small would have plenty of give to it. The cumtube add-on aside from being just fun all around allows us to apply lubricant without removing the toy, which is a major plus for extended anal sessions. Given the small size of the toy and the fact that it was meant for partner play. Echo doesn’t have a suction cup option but we don’t think it would work that well with this design.

These are the kind of things you should be considering if you ever go down the Bad Dragon route. What are you going to be using it for -exactly-. You can configure for an all rounder but the real strength of these customization options is to get the perfect toy for your use case. But did we get that?

The short answer is yes, this wasn’t our first Bad Dragon toy and we were confident about how our choices would come together in the final package. Just like all my toy reviews I’ve gone and measured the toy I got versus the manufacturer specifications and found them within spec. The Echo we selected does its job perfectly, it’s a great DP partner for Emily, but I should caution you that in our specific configuration choices it’s actually kind of lackluster outside of that use case. That’s okay with us, we targeted our use case and we hit it, we have other toys for other activities, but if you’re just starting out you might want to use a different configuration, so lets talk about the specifics and stats of what we got, versus other configurations. All measurements are in inches. The manufacturer goes out to 3 significant digits, but there’s absolutely no way manufacturing tolerances are that tight and i’m dropping down to 2.

DimensionsSmallMediumLarge
Diameter of Head1.21.41.8
Diameter of Shaft1.71.92.4
D-Score of Head.68.921.5
D-Score of Shaft1.41.72.7
Total Length7.7911
Usable Length5.36.27.7
Base Cost (No tube/fancy colors)$95 USD$125 USD$155 USD
Echo, Cum Lube, and lube syringe

I really do love how the D-score metric more accurately reflects the larger jump from medium to large size. As a quick reminder, D-score reflects the percentage increase or decrease from the area of the median penis. You can clearly see how the middle of the shaft increases in size from the largest part of the head. There are two additional sizes I didn’t include here, mini, and extra large. Echo is clearly designed for thrusting, and we’re already hitting soda can on the thickest part of the large, going much larger could slow that down, and the length on the large is already cervix smashing, which you may be going for. The mini doesn’t penetrate far enough or give enough girth for a pleasant thrusting experience but as a purely anal toy it might work. If I had to recommend a configuration for a general purpose vaginal thruster it’d be a medium or large in firm firmness to bring out the texturing, depending on your experience level and how hard you’d like to be able to bottom out or ‘hit the back’. The large is already longer than the deepest vaginas so if you’re looking for considerably more girth while being able to take the full length of the toy you’d be better served by other models such as Apollo. Suction cups are not available with Echo.

Let’s talk about the cum tube add-on for a minute. When you order any dildo from Bad Dragon with a cum tube you get the applicator syringe and an 8oz bottle of cum lube which I’ve got pictured above, and did a companion review for. This adds a couple of unique play options. For one, just as we mentioned above, you can re-apply lube in anal situations without having to pause the action. If you’re into anal you know the annoyance in trying to get a lube that lasts for the whole session or getting enough lube the first time. The cum tube bypasses both these issues and you’re free to build that anal orgasm on your own schedule. It’s also just strangely satisfying to dump an ounce or two—this is much more than you think!—into Emily as she hits climax and then watching it pour out of her. It does have some cleaning downsides. If you have hard water the tube will yellow slightly over time, and since the end of the toy has an opening you can get all sorts of bodily fluids impacted in there. I recommend ‘priming’ the cumtube, which will create some pressure and keep things from getting too tough to clean. In either case, the cum tube will add both prep and cleanup time to your routine if you employ it, so you need to know that going in.

While we’re highly satisfied with our configuration, even our high-end preferences found the price-point on the small a little much for the amount of dildo you’re getting. I think the price points on the other two sizes shown in the table are fair for what you get—premium but fair.

So what’s the conclusion here? If you’re looking for an excellent thrusting toy and an entry point into the world of Bad Dragon the Echo in medium size and firm firmness is probably your best starting point. Don’t skimp on your color options, silicone toys of this quality might be with you for decades if you take care of them. The other sizes are a bit more niche than I can recommend to a general audience, and especially the small at it’s price point. The Echo also makes a nice entry level toy for cum tube newbs, but is very effective without it. If you’re thinking about a use case like ours—double penetration—I think there are more cost effective options unless you need the cum tube. But we absolutely love the cum tube functionality in this role and wouldn’t go without it, that’s a personal choice.

If you think you might want one of these, but have more questions or concerns, you can leave a comment or contact us via the contact page in the footer. We’ll be happy to answer anything you feel we left out. I also encourage you to check out the Cum Lube review we did in tandem with the Echo review, especially if you are considering getting a toy with a cum tube. Until next time.


I am not a paid reviewer. My content comes from me and I was not solicited in any manner for this review. My thoughts and opinions are my own.

Have a comment or a question? Is there a topic you’d like discussed? Let me know through my contact page.

Dildo Review – The Vamp by Tantus

In the grand scheme of things, and even in the context of the history of the dildo, body safe materials are something of a recent fad that Emily and I hope turns into a trend. This is our effort not only to push that trend along, but to aid in the curation of that space, call out bad or deceptive practices, and promote products and companies we feel good about and have good personal experiences with (As a reminder, we are not paid by anyone for any of this). Tantus Inc. is one such company and we own several of their dildos and plugs. If you’re wondering what this sorta thing is doing in a couples blog, I suggest checking out this post explaining our stance on the issue. Suffice it to say, we both feel strongly about the efficacy of having a diverse range of options for lovemaking.

We had a bit of a discussion on which member of our war chest to review first. We felt we needed to pick a toy that potentially had something to offer the dildo newbie as well as the experienced. We decided on The Vamp.

Despite its marketing origins capitalizing on a certain sparkly vampire craze there’s nothing supernatural about the dimensions of The Vamp. First thing we did for this review was break out the tape measure and confirm the websites listed dimensions. This is a hand poured silicone product and the website gives a tolerance of +/- 5%. Ours however, was right on the nose in the diameter department with the listed specs, a diameter of 1.75 inches at the thickest point of the head and 1.7 inches at the thickest part of the shaft which slowly tapers down after an abrupt reduction in size from the head. This earns The Vamp a D-score of 1.4, which means it’s about 40% girthier than the average human male. You can read more about how we derive D-score and why we use it here.

On length there was a little bit of deviation, all accounted for by a slightly deceptive industry practice. Length vs. Insertable Length. Tantus measures the full length of their toys to give their length number, including the wide backstop base made to make the toy compatible with harness rings and to make it anal safe. This part of the toy isn’t insertable—safely anyway—and takes up a half inch of length. We only measure to this point for what I hope are obvious reasons, and that comes to 6.5 inches. It should be noted however, that the half inch you lose to the base makes for a great place to get a grip. The Vamp is on the longer and girthier side of human, but there’s nothing supernaturally sized about it.

The head is the focus point of this toy. With a slight but definite size advantage over the rest of the toy Emily finds The Vamp excellent for G-spot stimulation and entrance play though there’s no shortage of pleasure in going deep. Just make sure you know your limits and get to know this toy before you go ham because while 6.5 insertable inches is human, that’s more than enough length to hit most cervixes hard on a full powered thrust. In our experience with it, you need a bit of warm up for this toy to feel good on first penetration. The finish is satiny and smooth but you will either have to be naturally quite wet or well lubed for the best comfort. On that note, the star of the show brings its own caveats for enjoyment, the ridge the head makes is great for stimulation but that shape also moves lubricant, natural or otherwise, out of the vagina at a good pace. You’ll need to re-lube a few times during long sessions and those of you who prefer low and slow on thrust speed are at a bit of an advantage with this particular design.

Let’s revisit that finish. The Vamp is finished in a satin smooth matte that glides easily and avoids ‘grabbing’ the skin the way a glossy finish might with silicone material. It’s available in two colors and we went with the ‘purple haze’. You can also get this in a pale cream color. The color swirls a little as the saturation varies slightly and there’s a bit of a subtle shimmer to it. The shaft is lightly but uniquely textured though Emily says they’re a bit too subtle and she doesn’t really perceive them when thrusting. Your mileage may vary. Feel aside, the subtle veining makes for an aesthetically interesting piece.

Tantus silicone toys used to come in only one hard firmness with the notable exception of their old O2 dual density line, which was recently revived after being discontinued. Emily finds the hard firmness makes long or rough sessions with The Vamp intense and can produce a bit of soreness afterwards. Some of you will be going for exactly that experience, some of you would rather avoid that entirely. Earlier this year Tantus mixed up a new silicone formula that they call Super Soft and have been releasing variants of existing toys in that new softer firmness. The Vamp is one of these toys. We haven’t gotten our hands on one yet—frankly unless we get gifted one we probably won’t—but we have silicone toys from other manufacturers that vary in firmness and can say the higher compression of the softer variant will definitely be easier to take and won’t cause as much soreness but you’ll be trading off a little felt texture. Since Emily already finds the shaft texturing too subtle to really enjoy that may not be a trade off at all. A more tangible trade off is that the softer you go on the firmness the more care you have to take in storage and handling to avoid exposure to sharp objects. This should be done with all silicone toys but softer is more vulnerable. We have had zero trouble with our softer toys but it’s something to consider.

One thing we noticed on the website preparing for this review is The Vamp is no longer listed as suction cup compatible and there’s no longer a combo option with a bullet vibrator, which fits in the hole where the suction cup attachment would also go. I’m going to assume that means this feature was removed from The Vamp some time between our purchase and today, but if that’s the case, you aren’t missing out on anything. We found the included vibrator with older models of The Vamp to not be worth using when inserted into the toy, and heaven help you removing it if you didn’t lube the thing first. After less than a few minutes with it, over a year ago when we first bought it, Emily took the bullet out and applied it straight to her clitoris where it was far more effective. The loss of this feature could be considered a positive from that perspective, as the toy is no longer being marketed to accomplish something it does poorly.

As this is our first review on After The Yes, we’d like to point out that if you’ve never owned one before, the texture of the matte finish silicone is unique to the material and is an absolute unequivocal upgrade over materials like rubber or ‘jelly’ in addition to being completely body safe and highly durable.

Speaking of durable. With proper care, silicone toys should last you your entire sexy life. If the words ‘proper care’ evoke images of proprietary cleaners and complex storage requirements fear not, these toys are bleachable, boilable, and can be thrown in the dishwasher. Just keep silicone based lubricants away from this toy, you will ruin it. They are non-porous and will not house bacteria to infect you or cleaning chemicals to burn you once cleaned in the way porous toys can. All of these consideratitons help blunt the price point. Silicone toys are simply more expensive than their porous and potentially toxic competitors. As of this writing The Vamp will cost you 50 bucks American in either the original ‘Flexible’ firmness, which is quite hard, or the new softer firmness. Both variants have a purple color, the softer one ditches the cream option for a copper variant. Emily and I prefer to buy our Tantus toys directly from their website, which frequently has sales, but they have affiliate programs and many of their toys are available from other popular online retailers and we actually got our first one from a local shop. So if shopping local is your preference that may be an option, it couldn’t hurt to ask them to order one for you in any case.

The Vamp seems like a toy that was designed for beginners in larger sized toys but definitely not for beginners to vaginal penetration in general. If you are new to vaginal penetration in general you may want to start out with something a bit smaller. Some people use this toy for anal play and it is certainly safe to do so but that D-Score of 1.4 means a whole lot more in the back door than it does in the front, I don’t recommend newbies to anal penetration start with something this large.

As a quick recap:

  • Length: 7 inches (6.5 Insertable)
  • Diameter: 1.75 Inches (Thickest Part of the Head), 1.7 Inches (Thickest Part of the Shaft)
  • D-Score: 1.4
  • Finish: Matte
  • Firmness: Firm
  • Material: Silicone

In conclusion Emily and I feel we can safely recommend The Vamp to most couples, especially those experienced in vaginal penetration but just starting out in the dildo scene. We have had ours for over a year and it looks just as good as the day we bought it without a hint of wear. We had a good collection of silicone toys prior to picking it up and have purchased many more since. Our Vamp still sees regular use despite the increase in company and we doubt you will get bored with it in the long term if you decide to pick one up.

Have a comment or a question? Is there a topic you’d like discussed? Let me know through my contact page.

I am not a paid reviewer. My content comes from me and I was not solicited in any manner for this review. My thoughts and opinions are my own.