There are numerous sex stores in the Castro. However, Rock Hard distinguishes itself from some of its cavelike counterparts by offering a diverse variety, a warm ambiance, and competent staff.

The bulk of customers here are homosexual and male, and the product is primarily aimed at the neighborhood (if the Pride flag displayed in the front window wasn’t enough of a giveaway). An selection of sex toys, bondage accessories, strap-ons, and lube (by the gallon!) are neatly exhibited against neutral grey walls.

Despite its small size, the shop is well-lit and welcoming—the door is frequently kept open on warm nights—and the store staffers are knowledgeable at answering questions and making recommendations. Beyond inexpensive lube, the store is also known for showcasing exhibits of erotic art.