Sex toys, once seen as strange and forbidden, are now part of everyday life with everything from basic dildos to a remote control vibrator now in Poundland.

But what’s it like behind the scenes? Is designing and manufacturing sex toys an embarrassing job? And would it be even more embarrassing if the sex toy firm was a family business?

Shaun and Daniel Beech run Sexy Emporium, a leading UK online adult toy retailer based in Stoke-on-Trent.

Dad Shaun started his licensed adult store over 20 years ago, and in 2015, Daniel returned home from the University of Manchester looking for a summer project and decided to bring the business into the 21st Century with a dedicated online presence.

Luckily, they didn’t need to have any awkward conversations with their bank manager when it came to getting the business started, Daniel told the Daily Star as “the business was started with a £10,000 investment from family members”.

Father and son decide which sex toys Sexy Emporium will sell as “both directors work as buyers."

"We work with a handful of factories in China, who specifically make our products. They will notify us if they have new designs and we will work together to pick what we think will sell well,” says Daniel.

The company’s biggest seller at the moment, Daniel reveals, is the daunting-sounding Darth Impaler 12 Inch Dildo,” with nearly 3,000 units sold over the past year. "Feel the force within you!” jokes Daniel.

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Valentine's Day and the run-up to Christmas are the business’s busiest times, as well as Black Friday, Daniel says, but the company’s virtual storefront on eBay business stays busy all year round.

Daniel and his dad have been talking about sex toys together so much that nothing’s embarrassing any more, he says:

“We do discuss the sex industry and sex products and sex topics for our blogs and other content," he explained.

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“There's nothing embarrassing or awkward about it to us anymore, you very quickly become used to the products and industry once you've been here a couple of months, it does require a good sense of humour, and the job is never boring!”

“To us this is our business,” he says, “our main objectives are to ensure we have the right products for our customers, at the right prices, and we work hard to ensure our customers receive our standard five star service on all their eBay orders.

“We have found the products people want aren't always what we or other people would typically assume," Daniel added, "but it's no problem for us”.

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