WARM and TOUCH are two products born out of the real-life experience of Janine and LJ, the founders of WARM, Inc., and this experience has gone on to change the life of many sex toy users. The principle at the core of the two products is actually pretty simple as both are all about warmth, but it is the execution that makes the difference, and in that regard, WARM and TOUCH are really turning up the heat. Janine Weisberg, the co-founder of WARM, Inc., tells us more about the products and how they continue to stand out in the sexual wellness market.
Since when has WARM been around? Janine Weisberg: The inspiration for our namesake product, WARM, happened in 2013. The minute I felt a warm pleasure product, I knew I wanted to bring this concept to the masses. But before doing anything, LJ and I wanted to be sure we could produce something worthy of the time and energy it would take. We started the product development process and Warm, Inc. was born once we were certain we could build the product we envisioned. TOUCH was in development when WARM launched and thank goodness it was because we had several customers ask if they could warm their lube in WARM. Based on these initial requests, I knew I needed to be able to offer our customers a product compatible with WARM that could deliver lube as deliciously and irresistibly warmed as we had done for toys. And, I’m proud to say we accomplished that!
Which ideas, philosophies, strategies, and concepts did you have when starting the brand?
The very first foundation of our products and brand is that what we make must be inclusive. To the best of our ability, the products we create work with how you like to play. Our motto is – Play the way you like, and we’ll heat it up! It is important to me that everyone be able to experience the incredible effects heat and warmth have on our body and minds during intimacy. WARM and TOUCH were developed to work with a wide variety of pleasure products, lubricants and oils. Everybody is different, and everybody has different wants and needs. WARM works with your favourite toys and TOUCH, with your favourite liquid-lubricants and oils. Your play. Your way. Hotter!
How did you come up with the idea for WARM?
LJ is an incredible lover with an engineer’s mind. He had experimented with how to make toys feel as amazing as possible for his partner for a long time. Warm, Inc. was born the night he pre-warmed some of my favourite toys for me. What I experienced was an orgasm so intense it inspired a company and got him a very devoted girlfriend!
Did you already have points of contact with the erotic industry or did you move into uncharted waters?
We would have to invent a new shade of green to express how naive I was starting this adventure! I was fortunate to make some contacts right at the beginning that I still consider to be amongst my most trusted. I am so thankful for their guidance and encouragement. We knew we had the ability to develop and manufacture amazing products, and the guidance and introductions from some truly incredible industry folks sharing their wisdom, is what made launching into the marketplace possible. I had never had so much on the line before and felt very small amongst a sea of glossy, savvy, and accomplished companies. I was delighted to find the industry to be genuinely welcoming and supportive. This has truly been one of the most fun and rewarding endeavours I have had in my life and I am so grateful for it every day.
Can you explain your two products, WARM and TOUCH, in more detail?
That’s my favourite thing to do! WARM, at its most basic, is a highly engineered, sensuously designed, carbon and vegan-leather based warming device that preheats sex toys and accessories for exciting sensations and deeper orgasms.
TOUCH, is an exquisite powerhouse of features and details, while remaining incredibly simple to use. Lube is amazing! What TOUCH does is elevate your experience of using it. TOUCH’s sultry and sleek design holds your lubricant cleanly and safely and whenever you desire, delivers it warm right into your waiting hand. It’s incredibly sexy. Wave your hand and Voila! Warm lube or oil in the amount you desire magically appears.
Both products are designed to work with your favourite accessories and lubricants to induce deeper and more powerful orgasms, activate anticipation and arousal, and also provide well-appointed storage between use so that your favourite pleasure products stay safe and clean while also being perfectly hidden in plain sight, which greatly adds to the erotic appeal of playing with them.
Many people share that their toys are stuffed into sock drawers or hidden under the bed. Lube bottles get sticky and can accidentally cause cross-contamination. Not very sexy when you are wanting to feel erotic. Our products allow you to keep them accessible and even, enticing. Making time for sex and coming together to share intimacy, is something we have all heard can be an issue in relationships. Seeing WARM on your nightstand as you walk through your room is a strong cue to remember make time for sexual pleasure. Being able to effortlessly reach out and have TOUCH deliver the right amount of lube you like right into your hand, warm, silky and inviting… it all goes a long way to supporting desire and anticipation for intimacy.
Our products are like foreplay at the touch of a button that culminates in a powerful and elevated pleasure experience!
“WARM, at its most basic, is a highly engineered, sensuously designed, carbon and vegan-leather based warming device that preheats sex toys and accessories for exciting sensations and deeper orgasms.”
Both products use your Tender Technology. Could you tell us more about that?
Tender Technology is at the heart of our products. LJ is our master engineer and personally developed and tested every component and feedback system inside our products. He is really is amazing. Perhaps the answer is more, who is behind it, and that would be LJ; aka Mr. Warm. His 30+ years of engineering is what’s behind our Tender Technology.
Tender Technology is a unique system of heating components that is the result of his dedication to creating the energy-safe elements, system feedback programs, and body-safe interfacings, brought together and specifically designed for the purpose of heating up all the things that bring us pleasure. The way the different elements come together and talk with one another is like a symphony of engineering greatness. I’m probably biased, and it still is a true statement Lol!
LJ’s job was to figure out how to heat every toy, accessory, and lube I brought to him- safely, consistently and effectively without degrading, damaging, dulling, or shorting any of them out or disrupting their effectiveness. Then warm them up again and again and again perfectly, every single time. He did it. Tender Technology was born, and we officially launched Warm, Inc.
Something I like to share is why were we so passionate to do this. Heat is a powerful energy that is intrinsically linked to our vitality. We are literally, biologically hardwired to react positively to it. Heat and warmth are proven to create positive associations between people. Those associations deepen bonds and strengthen our sense of connection. Then there is the physiological response we experience to warmth. Without geeking out too much, our body and mind have a very potent reaction to the sensation of heat. The right temperature in the right place sends our entire pleasure response into overdrive! Nerve endings get excited, tissues swell, blood flow increases, our brain lights up, all the things we need to experience pleasure as profoundly as possible. Research has even connected the sensation of warmth to embodied cognition, that is, our emotional perception of others is more positive when we are also experiencing the sensation of warmth. Heat and its profound effects on the way we experience pleasure both with our bodies and our minds excites me and I love sharing it with people.
The purpose of your products – to heat toys, liquid-lubricants, and oils – is obvious, but you’re aiming for much more: deeper connections and maybe even deeper relationships. How do you convey this message?
You’re so right, the basic premise of our products is clear – add heat, increase pleasure. And yes, there are deeper effects and benefits from using the products that are as equally amazing. Since the beginning of our beta-testing and still continuing in emails we receive from our customers, there is a common theme we hear which is this unexpected and welcomed increase in anticipation, arousal, and desire as a result of using WARM and TOUCH.
Good sex starts in the mind – WARM and TOUCH activate your mind the moment you turn them on, allowing you time to enjoy the sensation of anticipation, feel desire stir in your body, and increase your sense of arousal. All before you have even touched each other!
The element of warmth added to toys and lube creates a powerful and elevated pleasure experience. And the experience of anticipating feeling your favourite pleasure products warmed, more sensual, and with toe-curling delicious sensations heating up for you; turns out to be a built-in feature that encourages you to get present with how you are feeling and what you want, have a moment to enjoy and become aware of your body becoming aroused. That space to linger in anticipation for a minute is what heightens the sense of mental stimulation and arousal. The combined effects of heat and anticipation create an increase in arousal and can significantly deepen the sense of connection. Using WARM and TOUCH has proven to have significant potential to create a deeper sense of connection.
“The element of warmth added to toys and lube creates a powerful and elevated pleasure experience”
Sex toys, even warm ones, could never replace a partner you enjoy being with. They can and do, enhance both partners sexual pleasure. WARM and TOUCH are the result of the pleasure LJ encouraged me to enjoy. What these products do is incredible. Him being the guy who brought them to me doesn’t suddenly make him an ‘option’ or ‘replaceable’, it actually made him the one I don’t want to be without. Bringing that kind of sexual experience to others is definitely worthy of being my life’s passion.
There is so much vulnerability around sex. You are not only revealing and sharing your physical body and everything you love or maybe don’t love so much about it, but your very personal desires, cravings, wants and needs. Being able to communicate with your lover is imperative for a healthy satisfying exchange and yet at times, it is challenging. But, without it, we do not get to experience the most rewarding aspect of intimacy which is true connection.
Using WARM and TOUCH to instigate intimate moments is a flirty and less vulnerable way to ask for what you want. Couples rank this high as a complaint when asked about dissatisfaction in their relationships. Asking for what you want can be one of the most vulnerable parts of being intimate with someone. And not getting what we want and need, has a direct and profound long-term effect on a couple’s ability to maintain their sex-drive for each other. Knowing that, still doesn’t make it easier. Warming a toy does.
For Mr. Warm and I and many others, these products help facilitate and navigate our conversations. They also set them up in a way that reduces potential shame triggers and even potential for re-trauma exposure.
What I also experienced that night LJ warmed my toys and what our customers have confirmed they are also enjoying, is a most elevated orgasmic experience! One that bonded me and continues to do so, deeply to my partner. What LJ did that night is so much bigger than ‘warm toys’, and it sure does keep me coming back to him to experience more of just how hot we can be together!
How long have you been working on your two products, from the initial idea to the finished product?
From conception to launch, each product got a year devoted to development and testing. WARM was launched first and TOUCH followed a year later. WARM took longer to get to market as we were starting from scratch on everything to make a product that had never existed before. TOUCH benefitted from all the groundwork that went into making WARM a reality.
How have your products been received by the industry, the trade, and the consumers? Which challenges did you have to overcome to establish your products?
I think as with many things in life, our greatest strength is also our biggest challenge. These are completely new products based on a concept many people haven’t explored. That means on one hand, the world is our oyster, and everyone is a potential new customer! And on the other hand, it also means product education is needed on every level. I love the moment when I see the ‘light-bulb’ has clicked on for a customer, retailer, distributor; about what these products do and are capable of! These are definitely a ‘Once you get it, you get it’ type product. And, once you feel what they can do and experience all the thought that has gone into them, so the end result is a seamless, erotic, heightened, pure pleasure-based experience that incorporates right into your intimacy, they really do quickly become a ‘How did I live without this?!’
People are very excited about them and the reception has been great. Customers love them. I know this from our interactions and follow-up after purchase. Working with our distributors and retailers how to best showcase the products is definitely a key component that continues to evolve as consumer awareness continues to grow!
Which target group are you aiming at, and what does this clientele expect from your products?
The target group keeps expanding due largely to the feedback we receive from different demographics about how the products have helped them and even been a part of healing on some level for them. That feels really special to me personally. These products can be as simple as sexy, hot fun and that alone is a wonderful thing. And we are learning more and more how deeply they are benefitting people working through trauma, healing from surgeries, going through a trans process, libido and body temperature side-effects from certain medications and even the changes brought on by menopause have all been shared with us as having received benefit from having our products. Just like heat, the benefits of this product are endless and continually resonate with new consumers every day.
What can you tell us about the pricing of your products?
One of the first things LJ and I agreed on is our products needed to be of the highest quality, long lasting and luxurious to use. These are investment pieces that will be a part of someone’s sexuality longer than the toys and lubes they use with them. Needs change, bodies change, wants change. WARM and TOUCH will be beautiful and still working through every new favourite pleasure product you find and through many, many, bottles of lube you will love!
The quality of goods customers receive when they purchase a Warm, Inc. product is on par with its price. Both products passed SGS testing with flying colours and will well be 5, 7, 10-year products every customer can benefit from having in their sexual tool-kit. Product life will of course be affected by user care and maintenance. And, all our products have a 1-year manufactures warranty. Excellent quality coupled with infinite uses is what really directed our pricing strategy.
Toys that heat up are becoming more prominent in the industry, an added confirmation to what our beta-testing revealed two years ago. Heat makes what feels good, feel amazing! With one WARM, all the toys can be warming toys. There is a really sweet looking toy I am aware of that warms, and retails for $195. One toy costs more than a WARM.
Things I thought about while we were in product development: What if the heating element in a toy breaks? That toy is going to lose its lustre even if it still works in every other way, you know you’re missing something. What if you outgrow that toy and want something new? That is a $195 toy that just doesn’t do it for your anymore. What if the heating part is amazing, and it is buzzy and you need rumbly, or vice- versa, or the toy itself just doesn’t quite feel the way you like or hit the right spots. One WARM makes every toy a warming toy for $149. Every toy you love and know works with your body can now also be a warming toy. Fun fact another customer was excited about, WARM can also magically turn any toy into a luxury toy. Warming even a basic vibe or dildo and suddenly you are feeling like Beyoncé with her famous solid gold sex toys. Everything feels sexy and decadent when it is pre-heated and waiting for you.
When retailers ask me about our price points, for me it’s an opportunity to educate how WARM can not only help save their customers money in the long run, which goes a long way in building customer loyalty and trust, it really is the perfect product for them to invest in.
And TOUCH? TOUCH has an unexpected added incentive built in for retailers. By making using lube effortless and irresistible, it also creates an increase in use. When customers buy a TOUCH they find they are now buying a lot more lube! Funny story, I actually sent a bottle of a customer’s favourite lube to him as his only complaint with our product was he was going through twice as much lube now Lol! Of course, I wrote in the card, ‘Thank You for TOUCH’ing so much!’ I couldn’t resist. He wound up buying both products and sent me a thank you. I really love it when our customers share their stories with us.
What can you tell us about your distribution channels? Where can the consumers buy your products?
We currently work with two distributors in the US who sell into brick & mortar retailers. We also have our house accounts of retailers who were our 1st early on-boarders. Recently the products have been incorporated into numerous Lifestyle play-clubs and vacation destinations. And of course, our products can also be purchased on our website, ExperienceWarm.com.
Would you mind telling us a few things about your distribution strategy for Europe?
Our team has been very cognisant about bringing on distributors in a strategic fashion. We want to really invest in our partners with spiff programs, discounted demo units, ad placement, organic promotion and more. Because we are a tight-knit team it is imperative we work with distributors who are as excited about the product as we are. They essentially become like family. Eropartner has an amazing reputation in the industry and we were very excited when Chris expressed his interest in our products. The enthusiasm he shared, along with his team members, is congruent with our vision to WARM up the world and get people TOUCH’ing!
We are proud of the four-month exclusive we are sharing with them and are excited to set the stage together for our launch into Europe with these category defining products.
Which advice do you have for retailers so they can achieve the best-possible success with WARM and TOUCH in their stores? How should the products be marketed?
Over the past two years, we’ve definitely learned quite a bit about ways to ensure WARM and TOUCH are sold best. First, demo units in-store are imperative so that customers can feel how warm toys and lubes really makes a difference. Heat is such a visceral experience and that makes these products great to guide customers to.
Here, our greatest strength is also a challenge. Customers probably won’t even know what their questions, needs, or concerns might be while experiencing this new product concept. Sales staff being able to share some of the key features and product value I talked about, can be very useful. Finding out what toys their customer already has and wants to have will guide sales staff how to highlight these products in a way that will equate highest value for the customer.
We have heard from our retailers that experimenting with where to display the products in-store for their unique customer demographic can have a big impact on sales. Some great locations are, obviously by the glass and stainless toys, and also in the kink area where sensation and temperature play are a more familiar pleasure. WARM doubling as safe and cushioned storage is perfect for customers who have breakable toys or a need for discretion. My favourite spot is near anything anal. What WARM and TOUCH do for anal play is quite possibly ‘new standard’ setting! Many of the sexperts, bloggers and educators who have received the products call them Game Changers! Of course, making sure the demo units are on is kind of important too lol! TOUCH fits in nicely with your lube displays and near the cash register as a lot of customers walk in, get the lube they want and walk straight to the register. They are already in a lube frame of mind, demoing what they are missing is easy!
Do you plan on further expanding your brand?
LJ and I do have other concepts for bringing more warmth to the right places, and there are a few projects we are exploring with possible partners. Right now, we are having fun expanding the brand and building consumer awareness that sex can be even hotter! There are still a lot of customers we haven’t met yet who can benefit from WARM and TOUCH, getting it to them is my main priority.
What is your opinion on the current situation in the market? Is there too much buzz about sex tech?
There is a lot of buzz about technology in the world. It seems logical our sexual realities would mirror that. We have access to new experiences never available before, I can understand a high level of excitement and energy around that. Adding the intensity of sexual energy and drive to the rapidly expanding possibilities new technologies provide, well, it is our human nature to be much like kids with a new toy. It is going to be our everything while it is shiny and new. And, that isn’t necessarily a bad thing. There are many people enjoying connections and sensations in new ways who maybe were struggling or finding it difficult to experience what they desired. That sure seems like tech-positive is aligned with sex-positive. Bringing people closer together, to me, is always a good thing! If sex-tech can help achieve that than I celebrate the buzz!