In a world where “augmented reality” is quickly becoming more than a trendy phrase, it seems too plausible that augmented sex will become a reality.
Sure enough, the race to achieve interchangeable companionship is at full tilt. Chief among the competitors is Pipedream Products, which has made its presence known with its Ultimate Fantasy Dolls. SE Magazine spoke with Rob Phaneuf, VP of Product Development, to find out more about these dolls, what makes them so lifelike, and how we’re all inching closer to the future in the arena of sexual fulfillment.
SE: Talk about the reaction at 2018 ANME to these dolls. Pipedream had record-breaking January sales, thanks in part to these dolls—so it seems they were well received!
Phaneuf: The reaction to our Ultimate Fantasy Dolls has been overwhelming. We chose to unveil them at ANME since many of our customers had never seen a life-sized realistic doll in person before. ANME gave us the opportunity to reveal them directly to our customers for the greatest impact and the response was electrifying. Customers are very excited to finally have access to affordable lifelike dolls from a reliable company that can meet demand.
SE: How long did the creative process take from first sketches on the drawing board to final product?
Phaneuf: We spent over two years perfecting our Ultimate Fantasy Dolls. We’ve dominated the mega-masturbator market with our Pipedream Extreme collection, so it became clear we needed to create a full-size TPE (thermoplastic elastomers) doll that would take our brand to the next level.
SE: Who came up with the names? Did market testing reveal these two names were popular among the demographic these dolls are targeting?
Phaneuf: Kitty and Carmen were named via brainstorming with our creative department. We did look up the most popular stripper names, but everyone on the team offered their opinions and collectively decided on Kitty and Carmen.
SE: How did you guys settle upon steel for the material of the skeleton? What benefits does steel pose over other materials you may have been thinking?
Phaneuf: Stainless steel is the strongest material that won’t rust, corrode or wear down during usage, so it only made sense to use it as the core of our Ultimate Fantasy Dolls. If cared for properly, these stainless steel skeletons will offer years of enjoyment.
Kitty and Carmen are heavy at almost 80 pounds. Having a stainless steel skeleton allows the joints, hinges and movable parts to be strong and durable. It also permits our dolls to stand and be posed in almost any position. There is no other material that offers all of these benefits. Stainless steel may be more expensive than other options, but details like these are what set our Ultimate Fantasy Dolls apart from the rest.
SE: I’ve read the Ultimate Fantasy Dolls are incredibly lifelike because they are so malleable—without revealing too much, can you talk about the actual construction of these dolls?
Phaneuf: Our Ultimate Fantasy Dolls are created with TPE, stainless steel, reinforced joints and hinges, and our proprietary blend of Fanta Flesh that gives them their ultra-lifelike touch and appearance.
SE: Is it fair to say the customers most likely to be searching these dolls out would skew more experienced?
Phaneuf: This is absolutely true. Most users who have enjoyed our torsos and larger realistic masturbators are looking for the next best thing. Most Ultimate Fantasy Doll users will have experience with other types of large realistic masturbators before purchasing one of these dolls. But they know what a great experience it will be before they even make the investment.
SE: With your Ultimate Fantasy Dolls, what was Pipedream Products ultimately trying to achieve?
Phaneuf: We wanted to be the first major full-line manufacturer to produce affordable, high-quality life-size dolls for our global distribution network, as well as the international fan base for these types of dolls. We have definitely accomplished what we set out to do.
SE: As dolls like this come out—more and more lifelike—how far away do you think practically indistinguishably real dolls are for mass consumption?
Phaneuf: Ultimately, our goal was to introduce full-size realistic dolls to the masses. Our Ultimate Fantasy Dolls are available to people that have never had access to full-size dolls before. Especially in the U.S., consumers haven’t been exposed to dolls of this quality at this price. Our dolls are available anywhere that Pipedream products can be sold.
SE: Are these dolls built for lube? Is that a popular upsell with the dolls?
Phaneuf: Our Ultimate Fantasy Dolls come packaged with our Moist Body Lotion. While this is what we recommend for use with their material, it’s always a great idea for stores to offer additional items such as Refresh Toy Cleaner, and Pipedream Extreme Toyz Fanta Flesh Revive.
Each doll also comes with our extensive Care & Usage Guide, which outlines the best ways to clean, store, and care for our dolls. Our guide, translated into six languages, includes internal and external cleaning and maintenance; foot, skin, and hair care; and make-up removal and application; plus storage and overall long-term care.
Additionally, all Ultimate Fantasy Dolls feature an internal Fanta Flesh tube with a textured interior and closed end. This tube can be placed in either of the doll‘s lower holes to act as a female condom. This makes cleaning easy and convenient without having to clean the dolls themselves. The dolls even come with a heating element to help provide the most realistic sex play experience available.
SE: What’s your advice to retailers about merchandising these dolls? Is delivery an option?
Phaneuf: Our Ultimate Fantasy Dolls are shipped with full-size posters that highlight their features for easy in-store merchandising. We are asking stores to contact their sales representatives directly so that we can create custom options that work best for each unique retail environment.
All Ultimate Fantasy Dolls are shipped in unmarked, discreet packaging to ensure customers confidential shipping.
Delivery is based on the retailer. Quite a few websites are having distributors drop-ship the dolls directly to customers. Since the boxes are sturdy, being able to ship directly to end-consumers is a great option.
SE: Assuming sales with these dolls continue to do well, do you anticipate releasing other skin tones and more body variation?
Phaneuf: We are already working on additional styles to add to this collection. Many of our current prototypes are in response to the customer feedback we are already receiving.
For more information, visit pipedreamproducts.com.