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There’s a Sex Worker Mixing Witchcraft into Her Bag of Tricks

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Welcome to Brain-Throbs & Blow Jobs, a column that will be highlighting the great minds and perspectives of Bay Area sex workers through interviews and photo portraits.


Gia welcomed me into the room. Spell candles flickered, and I could smell flowers and dried sweet grass burning. Honey soaked words dripped from her mouth, asking me how my day was while she purred over my 6-month pregnant belly. When Gia speaks, it feels like you and she are the only people in existence. Everything around me started to feel a bit more magical and possible; my chest was thumping with excitement and nerves. I wasn’t exactly sure what would happen next, but I pretended that I did, and let her lead me the bathtub which she had filled with rose petals and suds. The water curled up around my belly making me weightless and warm. Gia’s free-spirit suddenly felt more grounded as she instructed me to explore the rise and fall of my breath, and I started to relax. What happened next I will keep in my own private vault of erotic adventures, but I will say it was worth every dollar.

Gia Isabella is a self-identified love witch, who brings elements of sex magic into her sessions. “I’m a surreal-ator, and I work in surreal-estate,” she says with a playful wink and a smile. I have been providing professional sexual services for the past decade, but this was my first time seeing a fellow sex worker. Gia incorporates sex magic and mindfulness meditation to help people connect with their bodies. She sees sexuality as a tool of pleasure, transformation, and healing. After being fortunate to have this beautiful magician connect with my body, I sat down with Gia to learn more about the possibilities of sensual spell-crafting.

MH: How is sex magic different than regular sex?
GI: Sex magic involves paying attention to that energy and working with it for a desired outcome. A lot of practices involve directing all of your attention toward something you wish to manifest at the moment of orgasm. Right before you cum, you make a wish! Focus on that wish entirely and then cum your heart out. It’s really potent stuff. And it’s fun to play with. Play is a big part of my practice. I think most of us didn’t grow up feeling affirmed about our sexuality or our bodies. There’s a lot of confusion. A lot of shame. We aren’t usually encouraged to play with our bodies or explore them in any meaningful way. A lot of us don’t learn how to advocate for our own pleasure. I think this makes it easy to become disconnected from our bodies and our sexuality. I’m a professional, and it’s still something I struggle with. But it’s a practice. Like anything else. Some days are easy, some days are hard. I’m in the business of helping people get into that practice. I’m not a guru, and I’m not enlightened. I’m just out here peddling natural dopamine and oxytocin, hoping to help people to find their own magic.

MH: What would someone expect in a session with you?
GI: I have a variety of offerings, and every session is tailored to the individual. There’s usually some sort of mindful breathing exercise and guided visualizations to help folks become more aware of bodily sensations. Sometimes we set intentions. Sometimes we focus on things like releasing sexual trauma or performance-related concerns. And sometimes it’s just about giving people permission to surrender and experience pure pleasure and having a good time. The underlying philosophy is always that if we pay attention, adopt a playful attitude, and allow our everything to unfold, it can have a profound effect on the experience. And that all can be very healing for some people.

MH: After I sessioned with you, I felt more in my body and happy for a few days. Why do you think that is?

I think there are probably health benefits to just having fun. And with performance related concerns, people tend to respond really well. It’s different than just talking about it with a doctor or therapist. It’s hands on. It’s playful and compassionate, so the shame tends to dissipate. And using mindfulness awareness helps them to gain some control over the issues they are facing. I encounter a lot of men who struggle with premature ejaculation and erectile dysfunction, and it’s not just older men that are experiencing this. I see younger men with the same concerns. And I see women who also have performance-related worries. Certain aspects and pressures of our modern world can be super alienating. Too much work, not enough play. Too much social media, not enough real connection. Too many bills, not enough money. I think it’s stressful out here, and anxiety and depression have a significant impact on our sexual experiences. People worry, am I big enough, hard enough, tight enough, wet enough, ‘am I enough?’ A lot of my sessions are about teaching people how to see their thoughts, feelings, and bodily sensations as pure energy that they can re-direct and utilize as a tool for transformation. We work on not taking ourselves too seriously, noticing everything as it comes and goes. At least that’s my intention. But who knows? I guess the worst-case scenario is that someone guides you through a trippy meditation and gives you a happy ending!

MH: Tell me more about what you offer women and femme clients.
GI: Regardless of your gender identity or genitals, I offer skill shares, techniques, and guidance for people looking to learn more about their bodies. I offer trauma aware bodywork for people who are holding pain related to sexual violence, body shaming, teasing, or anything that they feel is blocking them from full experiencing pleasure. I create a safe space for you to explore orgasmic potential and to receive pleasure without the need to perform or return the favor. You can vocalize if you want to, but you don’t have to. It can really be about you – your pleasure, curiosity, and fun. You don’t have to worry about taking too long or about not being good enough. I will meet you where you are and guide you. I facilitate your relaxation and pleasure and help you come into your own sexual power. Together we make the magic happen.

I think the cost can sometimes prohibit women from thinking about sexual services. We often put money into our self-care and bodies, but we often put our sexual wellness last. I have a different offering for women and femmes, trans, and genderqueer, non-binary folks to make it more accessible.

One of my favorite offerings for my femme clients is the bath ritual. I make a nice hot bath, fill it with rose petals. We light a candle and set an intention. I anoint you and the tub with oils. Then you get into the water, and I guide you through a meditation. I will offer to wash your back. Your hands and feet. There’s something sweet about having someone bathe you. It’s incredibly nurturing. 

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Maxine Holloway

Maxine Holloway

Maxine is a sex worker, advocate, and new mom. She works for sex worker justice through the ever-intersecting avenues of community organizing, politics, education, and art. Her pornography performances and direction earned her AVN nominations, an XBIZ award, and a Feminist Porn Award. She founded the AskFirstCampaign.org to raise awareness about communication and consent. She co-founded BayAreaProsSupport.org, a sex worker resource organization. See more at www.maxineholloway.com (SFW)