Truly knowing oneself is challenging. Accepting one’s unique desires and methods can be a scary task, especially when at the heart of a lot of this is sex. It doesn’t help that there’s quite the confusing array of media, technology, and culture out there dealing with carnal embrace, making the search for the sexual self a daunting one.
Sexual wellness instructor and musician Vanessa Cuccia, however, has introduced a groundbreaking product and philosophy to the mix. The Chakrub, a crystal sex toy both aesthetically beautiful and creatively simple, may be one key to unlocking the sexual self and finding deeper meaning behind a very misunderstood part of the human experience.
Started in 2011, Cuccia’s company offers a gorgeous line of 100% crystal dildos, all of them lovingly crafted for pleasure and exploration. Her site suggests that the Chakrub brings a “sense of sacredness to your playtime,” meaning it’s meant not only as a sensual toy, but a tool to help facilitate loving and aware sexual practice.
Cuccia’s site advocates that, “Creating an intentional practice with Chakrubs entails learning to quiet the mind in order to feel subtle energies, develop emotional intelligence, strengthen self-awareness, and accepting every aspect of who you are.” Sex being the swirling emotional vortex that it is, a meditative product such as this can be seen as a redefinition of how passion functions, of how intimacy should be treated, and what our relationship to sex can evolve to be.
In a recent conversation, Cuccia and I had a chance to chat about these subjects and more, not only in pursuit of how crystals can aid in sexual discovery, but also in recovery from sexual trauma, and other aspects of life we often erroneously exclude from sex’s range of influence. Cuccia radiates sensitivity and an acute awareness of her energy, and brings a lighthearted and wise exuberance to the discourse of sex. Her philosophy is compelling, and may alter the way you relate to sex, both physically and spiritually.
You’ll want to purchase your very own Chakrub upon reading this, that’s certainly clear, whether you believe yourself to be in tune with chakras or not. I definitely dig it.
We’d love to hear about the original inspiration for the Chakrub, can you give us a narrative of where the product came from?
I can go really far back, to something I don’t normally tell people, when I was a little kid, my family would go to Long Island and we would pick out geodes on the beach. My dad would crack them open and there would be a crystal inside. That’s something I remembered long after I started Chakrubs, so I think that my interest in crystals did start when I was very young. And then, when I was living in LA, I had a spare bedroom that the creator of the series Spirit Science came and stayed at, and he taught me everything about crystals. I was working at a sex toy shop and not really being sexually involved with anybody but having desire, looking at the sex toy shop and wanting to explore that part of myself while not being attracted to anything there. That was definitely an underlying current that was within me. So one day when I went to this woman’s house that had a collection of crystals, she brought one out and something just clicked and it just made a lot of sense to me, like all these different pieces coming together. I could see that as being something really beautiful, something that I would want to use. So really I created something I wanted, and having talked to other people, something others wanted as well.
How’s the reception been so far regarding the product?
When I was creating it I had my own test group of women, who were all best friends of mine, and their reactions were all great, and they gave a lot of feedback. Since then, I’ve had customers write me a lot of emails, pages long, about the transformations they’re having. With myself, I’ve definitely seen a lot of transformation in my own being. Now with all the news coverage coming out about, it’s interesting because people that aren’t necessarily attracted to crystal energy or healing work are seeing it, so with those people, you know, the comments are sometimes a little bit crude or calling scam, which is so hurtful to me because people think it’s this huge company but it’s just me right now, with some people who support it.
How do you explain crystals to those people who don’t even have the spiritual background you’d probably need?
I would say that crystals have perfect molecular structure, that’s why they’re so beautiful. Everything has a frequency, you have a frequency, I have a frequency, our hearts give off a frequency, so when you hold the crystal near you, your energies are collaborating in a way. Humans have sensitivity in their electromagnetic field and you can be affected by wifi signals, by someone else’s bad mood, you walk into a room and get a vibe from somebody, that’s all real. Crystals, having perfect molecular structures, are able to affect our vibration in a very positive way. They’re very good conductors of energy, that’s why the first radio was crystal set, and quartz is used in watches. There’s so much more to it, and talking off the cuff, it’s kind of difficult to explain, but that’s generally it.
And how would you explain the product to possibly more sexually inexperienced people, as well as those people who haven’t experienced crystals? How do you hope to change sex discourse with the introduction of the Chakrub crystals?
That’s the most important thing for me, with developing this product. In the industry, it’s a lot about sex, it’s a lot about kink, and the conversation of love and connectivity, and intimacy is definitely brought into it, so with crystals, people that practice crystal therapy know that you put an intention into a crystal. Say you’re working with a little pocket crystal, like a quartz, you’re putting your thoughts into the crystal, programming them in there, so with Chakrubs and crystals there’s that whole philosophy behind it, and it has to do with sex. So many people have experienced trauma in sex and I think that in general we’re all very confused. I think that true connectivity and sensitivity is dwindling down with the Internet and sex toys. Each crystal has metaphysical properties that pass down from ancient civilizations; they say rose quartz is good for opening your heart to all types of love, so with your rose quartz you’re using your sexual energy which is super powerful, along with your intention of finding love, so that’s what I want to bring in. It’s not just about getting off, it’s about turning yourself on and remaining turned on to the subtle pleasures and to accept that what we want is love, everybody wants love. We’re all walking around with such pain, that we’re hurting each other, but if we get past this veil, and say, “I’m a student of love,” and practice that together, that’s what I want to bring out to the world, is that understanding that we need to practice love, and the more people that get onboard, the easier it will become.
It sounds like this product can be used in all types of relationships; it’s not made for one type of relationship preference.
Yeah, it doesn’t matter if you’re having one night stands all the time, that could still be a practice of love, or if you’re in a monogamous relationship, that could be a practice of love, but I think the acceptance that energy is real is important. I was with someone for a very long time and he was wonderful, he did everything correctly, but I realized that I was unfulfilled because the energy wasn’t right. The energy wasn’t right and it just felt weird to me, and accepting that I’m someone who’s sensitive to energies, I go to a crowded place and if there’s a lot of stimuli I feel drained at the end of the night, so accepting that and saying I need to be with somebody who energetically lifts me up and doesn’t drain me, these are all things that you can’t see but I feel and believe are real. When it comes to sex toys, I couldn’t use something that is plastic and kind of like phallic looking, for me I wanted something pretty. And I wanted something with meaning behind it. I got one testimonial back from somebody who was like, I don’t want to treat my arousal as a headache that I need to get rid of. For a lot of people, it’s like, I’m horny I have to go take care of this, it’s almost like headache you have to take an Advil for.
It’s not de-intellectualizing sex; the product changes it from an itch, brings it back to people’s energies and away from social scripts.
I went to an adult novelty expo, it’s very interesting because I would see banners of scantily clad people with things like, “the sexiest event of the night,” or whatever, and it was cheesy. It’s almost like people are seeing sex and giggling, like they’re scared of it, as if it’s becoming humorous, which is great, but there is another avenue to explore, just like people can explore BDSM, also explore energies, energetic sex, tantric sex, these are ancient philosophies that with so much dedicated literature. To really just accept energy as real, you can expand your pleasure with understanding this, this can be seen as another fun aspect but it’s also much more stimulating because it’s not just physical, it’s not just genital, it goes through your entire body and into your head. You can explore your self by looking at how you treat sex, how you treat masturbation. Something I really believe is when Chakrubs come into your awareness, whether it be physically, or just the idea of it, that can teach you a lot about yourself. It’s a product that is a self-realization tool. We’re all mirrors of ourselves. That’s a major aspect of what I want to get out there, that when you choose to start a practice, Chakrubs, which are really sexual wellness products, it’s going to help you get more self aware, because you do it with the understanding that crystals are helping to unlock certain things in yourself and shining light on things you may have been keeping in the dark. It will accomplish a more self-realized aura about you. I want to get deeper into that; I plan on writing books and doing more workshops. As the sexual energy grows within yourself by using Chakrubs, you’re creating more energy in your whole body, and if you’re observing and letting it happen, the more analytical you become about it. Maybe you think about something because you have a desire, and through working with observing yourself like that with the intention of transmuting these negative feelings and thoughts into something you can use to empower yourself, you get to know yourself better, love yourself better, and love other people better.
The idea of the phrase, “just sex.” It’s a weird cultural and societal phrase that you can analyze against sexual wellness. Your product brings you closer to yourself with moral judgment. In doing seminars, what trends have you observed that can be remedied or helped by crystals?
It’s hard for me to speak on, because everything is good, and just as it should be, always. For me, certain trends are not healthy, and because of that I don’t participate. I know myself. For instance, polyamory, not for me. At one point, I tried to do something like that, but realized it wasn’t for me, so now I won’t participate in a relationship that’s polyamorous. But that’s through knowing myself. These things are gonna be there forever. There’s always going to be something that’s not quite right There’s a lot of negativity in the world. The only way to combat it is to keep putting goodness into the world and that all comes from the self. What’s good for you is good for the world, so understanding who you are is the only way to heal yourself and the world. Things like Tinder, I’m not such a fan of them, but I think it all depends on the person, and I think that if you know yourself and if you take the time, you make the decision at one point to get something more from life, more from relationships. Trends and everything are unhealthy if you’re treating them with an unhealthy attitude. Everybody’s different. These things are always going to be there, the more we drop the veils and ask what we truly want, why we swipe on Tinder and why we are exploring other things, is because we want to feel connected. It’s something people have innate, we want to connect with people, we want to connect with ourselves, a lot of us want to feel connected to a higher power or work; they want to connect. If we understand that and if we just trust that, and know we can, it’ll be really good for the world.
So treat yourself better, accept the sexual self, and put goodness into the world. About the crystals themselves, they’re very different from the sex toys you generally see. How do you use this product to get the best experience from it, how do you teach its application?
For people who aren’t really into crystals and things like that, I’ll hear, “Isn’t that going to be really cold and hard,” and it’s true. But the crystal itself warms to your body, and some people like temperature play if you want to keep it cold. It is hard, as a rock; it’s crystal. So those things are true, but you can warm it up and with the hardness of the crystal, it might not be for everybody. So far, it is for a lot of my customers, they really enjoy it, and actually glass and steel and wood are all sex toys that are extremely popular. The larger ones are really good for that whole feeling, and the small ones are good for that tickling sensation, and if you take away all the metaphysical properties, it’s still a great sex toy. I have plenty of testimonials to know that it’s not just me who likes it, and it’s great because a lot of my friends have it and I’ll get texts saying, “Oh my god girl just had a great night!”
So, how’s it going to feel? For somebody that’s starting to be interested in the crystal, if you quiet down, and set an intention, and you hold the crystal within, you will start to feel a subtle energetic vibration. It’s an all-natural vibrator. The more you use it, the more sensitive you become to that, and it may take a long time, because it is something you work on, but if you do work on it, you will start to feel the different energies of the crystal itself. In working with that energy, you orgasm with the crystal inside of you. I heard of one woman explain it as that crystal has memory, so it’ll have a memory of your pleasure. You’ll bond with it, because this isn’t just a toy that will eventually get old and get thrown out. This is something that you’re working with; it’s a beautiful manifestation of your relationship to your self. So the more you work with it, the more you’ll bond with it and become and become sensitive to subtle energy.
To use it with a partner is a very, very potent experience. One, because you have to pick somebody who you trust, to share your energy with. I heard a quote that was, “Don’t have sex with anybody who you wouldn’t want to be.” I think that’s really beautiful because it is an energy exchange. With the crystal, there is this belief and this idea that you’re sharing energy with the crystal and your partner, and there has to be trust. That’s the first step, and then using it with a partner, if you’re in a heterosexual relationship, and the man is working it with the woman, he can choose to use the crystal as a conductor of his own energy, and put that into the woman. Because it’s something that you’re both exploring in this spiritual light, you’re going to have a spiritual experience together, and it’ll strengthen your bond, like doing LSD together! If you really accept that this is what’s happening and you’re exchanging energy, and you’re working through things.
What can we expect in the near and more reaching futures for the company?
I hope to expand the product line, more crystals, different things. I have a lot of ideas that I want to bring, but it’s an independent company, so I’m doing the best I can, so it’s a slow burn, but I have plenty of ideas. The goal is to reach people that have truly experienced sexual trauma, genital mutilation, that need something, are looking for something, I want to help them, so I hope the more it grows, the more we see more the meaning of sexual wellness. I hope we’re able to heal a lot of the world of this. I have a book that I’m working on, I want to definitely be a voice and be seen for the philosophies behind the product and not only the product. I have a lot of dreams, I want centers dedicated to this, I want to do lecture circuits; it’s still only the beginning. I hope to do some good in the world.
Vanessa Cuccia can be found via the main page for Chakrubs, linked above, or via the product’s Twitter account. Beyond her invention of the Chakrub, Cuccia is also the singer for Jahni Rae, rather fitting because, as she said in the interview, “they say the throat chakra and the sex chakra are connected, I think it’s funny that I’m a singer and I have a sexual wellness product.”