It’s not by chance nor mistake newly announced Maude – a line of sex essentials comprised of condoms, lubricants, and a personal massager – appears branded for an entirely new generation. Founders Eva Goicochea and Dina Epstein intentionally set out to challenge the status quo, imbuing their nascent line of sex positive tools with a distinctly inclusive unisex spirit designed to strip away embarrassment and elevate sex for all.
The Vibe’s sculptural profile evokes the gentle attention of a ceramic shaped by the hands of Eva Zeisel, but instead houses a 3-speed waterproof personal massager covered in soft-touch silicone, rated for a runtime of up to 2.5 hours.
Sex made simple – the succinct statement operates as both an ethos and mission statement for Maude’s founders.
“When conceptualizing Maude, we kept coming back to the idea of human-centered design for the products. When you think about how these products have been created previously, they always seem to ignore not only the purpose of the product—to enhance the experience—in how they design the packaging (we all have stories of fumbling to open condom wrappers), but also the discomfort that comes from these products being so loud and complicated,” explains Maude co-founder, Eva Goicochea.
Noting the universal annoyance of fumbling to open the condom wrapper when the mood strikes, but the fingers fail, Maude’s natural latex condoms are presented in buttercup-shaped packaging designed to open easily and with the right side up.
Prioritizing accessibility across three tiers – functionally, aesthetically, and more curiously, philosophically – the brand’s clean and iconographic design operates as a playful wink and whisper in a category typically characterized by the conspicuously louder intent communicated by male-centric branding.
“We wanted everything to be pared-down, gender neutral, but still with a sense of humor. Hence the symbols. As far as ease-of-use, the condoms are in buttercup packaging which is easy to open, the lube is in a pump, and the vibe is three speeds, ergonomic, and USB-charged.”
It’s easy to imagine leaving out any of these products out in the open, from the dark amber glass bottle lubricant with an undeniable resemblance to Aesop’s ubiquitous hand soap, or the single serving condom buttercup packs, to the upside exclamation point design of the USB charging Vibe.
“We worked with a well-known designer who has a tremendous love for symbols and creating design languages. He helped us create a “kit of parts” that have over a trillion (!) combinations. That said, the vibe was actually a shape I saw out in the world and brought back to Dina who is an industrial designer. Like a true tinkerer, she built it.”
The Maude Quickie kit contains two natural latex condoms and a small vial of lubricant, designed to serve desires expediently, whether at home or while traveling.
Maude is already shipping individual products and pre-packaged kits directly to consumers, inviting Maude-rnists to use an online interview to match habits and needs with products.
Noting the overdue appearance of sex positive products inviting all to the proverbial party, Maude’s Goicochea believes it’s about time the industry evolves beyond the tropes traditionally surrounding sex and its marketing. “It’s about humans. Why have companies overlooked these things for so long?”