Porn is a pervasive industry. Our most marginalized performers should be among our highest priorities and finding their material, generating exposure for them and delivering them fair wages should be a whole lot easier.

By Ally Sabatina

We’re here to talk about porn—not the run of the mill exploitative hand-me-down porn Jason Biggs and his ilk consume at nauseam until their dicks fall off in their hands, but rather the porn made for femmes, sometimes by femmes, with a focus on femme pleasure, liberation and understanding. Porn that looks the way we want to be see, porn that acts the way we fantasize.

It wasn’t until recently I realized it was unheard of in my circles (which I would argue are fairly progressive albeit suburban insulated, more homogeneous than should be comfortable but you know), despite some remnants of sex-positivity, to discuss our porn preferences.

We’ve all gotten passed the inherent awkwardness of our sexuality in terms of mentioning that we consume porn in one manner or another, but we don’t explore preferences in open conversation the way we would explore literally anything else. We’ve never once critically discussed representation in porn—even when we aim to critically discuss all other facets of being. We’ve never discussed whom we pay for our porn (and that’s likely because so many of us are porn pirates). So consider this my passive aggressive opener for my friends.

Below are my personal recommendations of porn I like. Of porn I’ve paid for. Of porn I’ve researched. Of porn I’ve sought out as part of a conscious effort to consume better, to consume ethically under a late capitalist system in which neither are possible.

Porn is a pervasive industry. It’s a still pirated industry under attack. Our most marginalized performers should be among our highest priorities and finding their material, generating exposure for them and delivering them fair wages should be a whole lot easier.

Crash Pad Series

There’s a reason Crash Pad Series comes first. It’s my favorite. One look at the Stars page and it becomes clear that Shine Louise Houston’s Pink and White Productions prioritizes diversity as a way of life …. because it is life. Transwomen, POC and gender nonconforming individuals are brought to the front and given the exposure necessary (ethically through the site’s membership) to make their coin.

On top of their commitment to diversity as more than just a marketing ploy, the website is remarkably easy to navigate when it comes to finding what works for you. Whomever is writing copy for the Crash Pad Series deserves a sufficient raise. After you abandon your comfort viewing in the male gaze, there’s something for everyone here.

Best part about Crash Pad? If videos aren’t your thing, every episode includes stills for your viewing pleasure.

Some of my personal favorites include:

Episode 146: Poppy Co and Souixsie Q

Episode 108: Q-tip and Sara Vibes

Episode 156: Ham Hawk, Minax, and Hotlips Hooligan

Queerporn.tv

Lovechild of reknowned performer, Courtney Trouble, Queerporn.tv holds a special place in my heart. Not enough mainstream pornography comes through the lens of performers and pushing beyond that, not enough pornography is made for those who live their lives outside the confines of heteronormativity. Courtney Trouble has taken it upon themselves to centralize the way we search, consume and see ourselves in pornography.

But it’s the manifesto that really gets me going:

“QueerPorn.TV is owned and operated by Courtney Trouble, and hosts exclusive content made by Trouble as well as a slew of other directors — all queer, all experienced sex workers. For a monthly fee, members have around-the-clock access to the huge variety of creative pornographic work that ranges from prolonged clothed make-outs, to sweaty marathon sex, to loving BDSM play… sometimes all within the same scene. This work breaks the machine and comes from the hearts of the people on camera, and is uniquely shot within it’s own community — never a studio.”

Circumventing the most problematic aspects of cis-het dominance in the producer’s chair this is the first, and hopefully not the last whole-ass website made for sex workers by sex workers.

You’ll find something here to keep returning.

Aorta Films

Ahhhhh, this is another one at the very top of my most searched webpages. Stemming from its commitment to good porn that everyone can enjoy, Aorta Films is an accessible option at only $9 a month—less than a Hulu subscription—for full access. Beyond all the performers being sexy, fun and cute as hell, Aorta takes on the artistic side of porn production with the best angles in pornography I’ve ever seen. These are art films of the nth degree.

Of all the pornography I’ve had the pleasure of viewing at my leisure and for this piece, films on Aorta are the most natural at their use of sex toys. Everything about the sex shown here feels like the sex I have, or more accurately, the sex I hope to have — the sex I try to have as often as possible.

Like Crash Pad Series, Aorta has stills available for every single one of their films in addition to the brilliant archival personal photo sets of their performers.

Favorites:

Backstage Pass

Dur/Doux

Two Parts

Transsenual

Marginalized to the front, please!!!! We know damn well that there is no one less valued, less visible, whose personhood is called into question more often than a transgender person. When we talk about trans-porn, we want trans folks to be showcased as people who have sex, who love sex but are more than their sex. All too often the visibility of trans people comes under the scope of their sexualization, or more accurately their fetishization.

From award-winning performer, Nica Noelle gives her actors and actresses the spotlight without taking away from what they did deserve it. While my criticism of the site is that it’s too lilly white and skinny for my liking, there are so few outlets for trans- performers to showcase themselves. I’m not one to applaud incremental change but in talking to those I love about what they love, I was told I would be remiss to leave Transsensual off my list.

Erika Lust

Suffering from much of the same whiteness as Transsensual, Europe’s Erika Lust is one of the forebearers of feminist media currently proliferating the mainstream. With a focus on ethics, education and bringing femmes into production, Lust is a good one. The best? No. Unlike the sites I mentioned prior, Erika Lust allows her videos to be purchased individually rather than in subscription. For the person who revisits one video over and over again, this is an ideal option.

At less than $15 USD per video and the option to digital download, there are few reasons not to divert your funds here instead of seeing John Wick 139.

 

 

Author Bio: Ally Sabatina is watching Barefoot Contessa rather than writing her author bios. In 2015, she replaced Xanax with cooking shows as a salve for panic in an unfair world. She knows the dogs on her block better than she knows her human neighbors. She works, freelances, lives and shares unsolicited opinions in Philly and on the internet.

 

Featured Image: CrashPadSeries

 

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