Sex and the Personal Shopper: A Sweltering Rant

money-hands-thumb15490930RANT WARNING! I’m detoxing from Personal Shopper Sex today. No, I’ve not been having sex with a personal shopper, and no I’m not opposed to having sex with a personal shopper if the opportunity and the desire arise . What I’m detoxing from is reading yet another story in which a personal shopper appears to be an essential part of a good sex life.

Why do I get the feeling that you only get really good sex if you’re totally repackaged in designer clothing and polished up to a sheen that only the super-rich have? And really, who has the time for that type of a total wardrobe reboot without a personal shopper? I know. It’s a post 50SoG world out there. I understand that. But Jeez! It’s astounding the number of bully billionaires who are out there in fictionland guiding their innocent young lovers to come of age in the world of rough-ish sex with the help a personal shopper from Sax 5th Avenue.

I realise those stories wouldn’t be out there if there weren’t someone, LOTS of someones reading them. And let’s face it, who hasn’t fantasized about a total wardrobe make-over and an expensive trip to the spa? But that’s looks, right? That’s surface details. I mean I hope that people like me for who I am no matter how shabby looking my track suit is. I know all the psychology and the writer-speak about having the heroine be a personality-less cypher, so we, the reader, can step right into her character and viola, designer clothes, expensive car, hot billionaire boyfriend who obsesses on us … the experience is all ours for the taking. I get that. It’s a fantasy, and we all have them. Though I confess I’d rather pour my fantasies into someone who has an interesting life and a personality with a few quirky flaws.

Growing up in a working class family, as I did, there’s another thing that bugs me about sex the Personal Shopper way. It bugs me that, in erotica and romantic fiction, ‘good sex’ has been commandeered by the rich and Personal-shopper- dressed. The young innocent, who is never rich and never very savvy in the art of looking good, is always repackaged in all things designer, all things expensive, all things chic until the drab little mouse is turned into a stunner with super model looks and poise. That done, she is now suitable for arm candy, and bed candy for the controling billionaire.

I can’t help but wonder, do only the rich and made-over get good sex, because if that’s the case, most of us are so screwed, and not in a good way either. Surely I can’t be the only one to want a bit of intelligence and grit in my fictional sex. And in my fictional heroines.

To me the rash of Personal-Shopper-made heroines in fiction feels like another attempt to sanitise sex and clean it all up so it’s acceptable for public display. It feels like an effort to convince us that the only good sex happens when we’ve been showered, plucked, shaved, waxed, deodorised and perfumed, then trussed up in designer clothes and nose bleed heels. And of course none of this can happen without massive amounts of money, so bring on the billionaire who can easily afford to keep his women all pristine and shiny before, during and even après-sex. It’s not that hard to take this trend to the next level; that good sex can only be created with the liberal use of a Platinum card. It feels to me like Personal Shopper sex takes the smell, the taste and the messy down and dirty out of sex in the same way Innocent Cypher Chick seems to have taken the personality out of fictional heroines. I can’t help but feel like this type of reading experience is thrusting soulless sex with soulless characters upon the reader.

If sex takes place in the brain at least as much as it does in the body, isn’t down and dirty in jeans and trainers in the back garden or on the kitchen floor just as hot and way more accessible than designer sex? But then again perhaps the whole Personal Shopper sex thing is meant to do just that, stimulate that hugely powerful sex organ, the brain, into a virtual reality fuck with a hunky billionaire. And the whole experience is all ours for the asking through the ‘fit-yourself-into-the-slot’ feature of the Innocent Cypher Chick.

There! That explains a lot. I’m no less disturbed by the trend, but then I am sweltering in the summer heat. So feel free to ignore my rant.  And besides, I’m pretty sure I’d be sweating through my expensive Personal Shopped clothing while waiting for my billionaire to pick me up in the limo. That’s certainly enough to disturb any Innocent Cypher Chick.

13 thoughts on “Sex and the Personal Shopper: A Sweltering Rant

  1. Well, I’ll probably get banned from reading and writing fiction for saying this, but I’m actually sick of … billionaires. You make me want to write my own rant!

    1. Lol! Have to say I’m a bit sick of them myself, Shar! I find money a useful tool in fiction, but only if it one of my characters having it can somehow move the plot forward in an interesting. In the real world when people talk about all their money and/or making money, I get really bored.

      1. Ack, wrote out a long response and forgot the captcha code, and now it’s gone. I’ll save it for my billionaire rant. 😉

        1. I could easily do a rant about captcha codes, Hon! They drive me insane. I’ll be looking forward to your billionaire rant 😉

  2. I love this rant, and very much agree. To me, the phenomenon you’re pointing out seems related to a trend that occurs in a lot of non-erotic rom com — the makeover that’s “necessary” before the girl can get the guy. See Grease or She’s All That or any number of things. In addition to the disturbing overtones you point out, I think it also suggests that a woman can’t be loved for who she is. She first has to make herself acceptable in certain societally approved ways.

    1. I couldn’t agree more, Annbeth! It was hard to decide which part of that particular rant I really wanted to concentrate on. But you’re so right, it’s the idea that a make-over is necessary for a woman to be ‘fit’ for the guy. Nothing new in it, just repackages Post 50SoG style. Thanks for the comment.

  3. Thank you, thank you, thank you. I understand the Cinderella fantasy of being swept off your feet and pampered by someone rich – though any similar fantasies I might have died after going to college with a few scions of extremely wealthy families, most chinless and all dull and obnoxious. If we’re sexing up standard romance tropes, I much prefer the hunky cowboy or heroic cop/fireman, who may feel an aggravating need to protect their heroines but aren’t obliged to do makeovers on her.

    1. I’m with you on heroes wanting to be protective. Who doesn’t want to protect those they love, Teresa? And frankly any bloke who is outdoorsy and doesn’t mind a little dirt under his fingernails and a little hard work gets my vote as way sexier then Metro-sexual-Money-Bags any day! Thanks for the comment!

  4. This is precisely why you I adore you! I could not agree more! If I read one more blurb that tells the story of rich people having perfect sex with perfect clothes and perfect cars and perfect everything, while in fact being so dysfunctional they are frightening, I shall scream!! Rant rant…. Kay xxxxxx

    1. Thanks Kay! And thanks for the lovely comment! It’s all the wonderful quirks and imperfections that make heroes and heroines worth reading about, in my opinion, and that includes the quirks and imperfections in their cars, clothes and sex lives.

      KD xxxxxx

    1. Thank you, Jillian! Let’s hear it for intelligent, real-people erotica! Or at least erotica with people who have something going for them other than money.

      Thanks for the comment,

      KD xxx

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