Q and A with Ms. Vagina Science: How Do You Masturbate?

msvaginascienceSex14 Comments

tealtheendoftime

Dear, Ms. Vagina Science, 

So, how exactly does one masturbate?

Sincerely, 

Confused about masturbating exactly

Some NSFW pictures after the cut

Dear CAME,

That’s a really good question. I feel like we (as in adults, men and women both) take for granted that we all just intuitively know how to pleasure ourselves. Most people I know, myself included, stumbled upon this great spot that felt good when I was young and just sorta figured it out. I started rubbing it, the rubbing felt good, I had my first orgasm, and I’ve been rubbing that same spot ever since with an ever increasing collection of accessories. But, what happens when you don’t stumble upon that spot and you don’t figure it out? It’s not really a part of our culture that our parents or a friend are supposed to sit us down and show us how to do it like riding a bike or balancing a check book.

I’ve been surprised over the last few years how many adult women I’ve met (I’ve yet to meet a man who hadn’t figured out how to jerk off. I’m sure he exists, though) who haven’t ever had an orgasm because they simply don’t understand how to make that happen. While I concede that you will need to figure out your sexuality and what turns you on, I think I can at least get you started. First we need to discuss what you’re working with “down there.”

Anatomy and Physiology

Because this is a woman’s health column and my name is Ms. Vagina Science, I’m going to go ahead and assume you have a vagina, clitoris, vulva, cervix and uterus. So, here’s the lay of the land: you have a vulva. That’s the part you can readily see with a mirror if you look. There’s lips that part to the entrance of the vagina. Near the top of your vulva is your clitoris. Take a good look at that diagram and then take off your pants and find it.

That’s the spot you’re going to want to stimulate. Most women masturbate by stimulating this part of the vulva. Other women masturbate by inserting a phallic object in their vaginas, thereby simulating sexual intercourse. Some women do a combination of both. Either way, you’re going to be stimulating your clitoris. See, the portion of the clitoris that is visible in the vulvar area is only the tip of the iceberg, so to speak. The clitoris has deep, extending nerve endings all the way to the inside of your vagina. So, either method of stimulation is clitoral for the most part (see the diagram below).

 

As far as what will feel good to you? That’s up to you to figure out. You need to take some time to explore your body. Rub your clitoris in different ways and directions. Try putting toys or fingers inside your vagina. The book, I love Female Orgasm – An Extraordinary Orgasm Guide (which I highly recommend), offers a great list of ways one might touch the clitoris during masturbation:

  • Directly on the head (tip) of your clitoris
  • On the shaft rather than the tip
  • On the left side
  • On the right side
  • Side to side
  • Up and down
  • In circles
  • The shaft of your clitoris with a rolling motion under your fingers
  • With one finger
  • With two fingers
  • With tapping, massaging, stroking, and gentle pinching motions
  • Any way you can think of!

Really, there’s no right way to do it. Just find a sensation that feels good and keep doing it. I know this one woman who likes to hump the arms of couches until she cums. A former female sex partner of mine would actually put no direct pressure on her clitoris (she has a super sensitive clit), rubbing her mons pubis just above her clitoris instead. Just get creative and don’t have orgasm be the goal. Obviously, that’s what this is all about, but initially, that’s a lot of pressure to put on yourself. Love your body, explore the terrains, and see what happens. Don’t do this just once! Do this all the time, several times a week until you get closer to your goal. The female body becomes more orgasmic with the more orgasms you have. The more the merrier!

Shopping

While most of us start masturbating with our hands (and that’s a fine start), you’re going to want to invest in some decent toys to really maximize your orgasmic potential. Personally, when I moved from fingers to toys, I got a decent beginners vibrator. It’s a simple vibrator I would just rub on my clitoris in circles until I came. It’s nice to have one with different settings, as some clits are more sensitive than others. If you go to a women friendly sex shop, you can just go up and ask what might work for you, too. I know, it seems kinda embarrassing, but good, professional sex shops will treat you with respect and courtesy, I promise.

Porn

Once you figure out the right place to stimulate and you have a good toy, give some porn a try. I am always hearing about how men are “visual” and how fapping to porn is something all dude’s just do. Men are often illustrated as compulsively jerking off at all time of the day and night, just looking for something to use as a masturbation tool.

I hardly ever see women’s masturbation represented this way. We’re always languishing in the bathtub with candles burning, tenderly caressing our bodies to orgasm though some mysterious, unidentified stimulation below the bubbles in our bath. That’s fine, I guess. If that gets you off, cool. Me? Well, I’m loading multiple pages on Google’s porn mode: Group sex, queer porn, straight sex, lesbians with strap ons. It just depends. If there are candles burning it’s purely incidental and I barely ever rub one off in the bath. Don’t buy into the shame and weirdness that comes with being a woman who likes to look at porn. For me, porn was the difference between figuring out my kinks and, well…not really figuring out my kinks. Sometimes I’ll just try something new and I’m always surprised by what will arouse me. Play around with it! It’s real fun.

Resources

Books:

I love Female Orgasm – An Extraordinary Orgasm Guide

The Smart Girl’s Guide to Porn

The Guide to Getting it On

Sex for One – The Joy of Selfloving

Top Masturbation Techniques for Women

Helpful Links:

Betty Dodson and Carlin Ross- Better Orgasms. Better World (the best sex advice around)

Babeland Blog (A company I respect with quality advice, education and advice)

Scarleteen (A great sex education site for young women)

sexuality.about.com (a easy read and super informative)

Porn

Findtubes (the google of free porn)

Feminist Porn

Mainstream porn is free everywhere. No links needed.

 

Good luck on your masturbatory journey! Let me know how that works out for you! Now, readers: what tips, links, advice, or other resources do you have for the reader who asked this question? Let’s get this girl some orgasms!


 

 

 

 


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msvaginascience

Feminist, Mother, Lover, Fat Babe, Student and Case Worker Extraordinaire, serving high risk women and families in Seattle. My background is in Midwifery, Public Health Research, Sexual Education and Childbirth Education.
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msvaginascienceQ and A with Ms. Vagina Science: How Do You Masturbate?

14 Comments on “Q and A with Ms. Vagina Science: How Do You Masturbate?”

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  1. Avatar of QoB
    QoB

    Added because I haven’t seen anyone else mention it yet: pelvic floor exercises (Kegels in American, I believe). If you know/can learn how to tense and release your muscles there, it brings more blood to the area and makes things more sensitive.

    Oh, and don’t be expecting stars and fireworks the first time, necessarily. Great if it happens, but the first few times for me felt more like the “genital sneeze”: fun, interesting, but not mind-blowing. It took practice to get better at it.

  2. Avatar of Jak
    Jak

    CAME, if you find your clitoris is too sensitive to orgasm from direct stimulation I really recommend grinding.  You can do that on couch arms, as msvaginascience mentioned, on a rolled up towel, a stack of pillows, a pillow over top of a rolled towel or even on your own hand.  The best part about your hand is you can shape it to cup your vulva as much as you want.

  3. Avatar of Anna J. Cook
    Anna J. Cook

    Some things that didn’t work for me:

    1. Water, for the reasons already mentioned — it seems to destroy my natural lubrication, and I even find a hot bat to be distracting in temperature extremes. That said, I realize it’s massively popular with some folks, so perhaps worth a shot?

    2. Alcohol. It puts me to sleep and makes climax difficult. I tried wine a few times to loosen myself up and it was always counter-productive. Now that I know what I’m doing, I can still orgasm while slightly tipsy, but I wouldn’t recommend it as a way to ease into things. It seems, in my experience to dull sensation.

    3. Toys. I love toys, yes. Vibrators, dildos, nipple clamps, etc. But I actually find hands still produce my strongest orgasms (my own hands or someone else’s). I say this not to criticize someone who does find toys satisfying, but to suggest that you may or may not experience toys as more satisfying than hands, as the OP seems to suggest. If you prefer hands, you’re not broken!

    Some things that were really helpful/successful:

    1. Patience. Taking things really, really slow with the hands and spending a lot of time of fantasy.

    2. Privacy and time. These go along with patience. The less anxious you are, the more comfortable in the space you’re in, without fear of interruption or the pressure of upcoming demands, the more likely your body will relax and respond with arousal.

    3. To be honest, although this sounds incredibly nerdy, the one thing that finally helped me figure out orgasms after years of failed trial-and-error was reading the first-person accounts of what orgasm FELT LIKE to individual women in Shere Hite’s report on female sexuality, published in the mid-70s. It’s dated, and the methodology is sketchy, but the personal narratives are really moving and their variety is great! They really drive home the reality that there’s no one right way to go about sexual pleasure.

     

  4. Avatar of Dr. Song
    Dr. Song

    For some great lady-friendly porn, check out my dear dear friend Miss Maggie Mayhem’s site: missmaggiemayhem.com will link you to her essays about sexuality and culture, as well as all the smut she’s been making lately. Keep an eye out for The Ned; he’s my best mate from school :)

  5. Avatar of KitzyKid
    KitzyKid

    I would also mention that if you haven’t ever taken a look down there, it may not look exactly like the diagrams. This is completely normal. I’d say the first step to figuring out what works for you is literally just feeling things out. I’d also try to check things out at a time where you have some privacy… it’s just one less thing to worry about while you are deciding what you like.

  6. Avatar of paperispatient
    paperispatient

    For even more anatomical fun, have a look at these 3D representations of the female genitalia! There’s a great one that shows how far-reaching the clitoris is, which is really cool.

    My advice based on my own experience would be don’t forget to explore inside as well; my clitoris is extremely particular about the kind of stimulation it likes, but reaching in and rubbing my G-spot is a guaranteed orgasm for me. For a while, I remember feeling a little weird because everything I read emphasized how important (external) clitoral stimulation is and that differed quite a lot from my experiences. Then I realized that all that matters is if what you’re doing feels good (and that what feels good is different for everyone) and it can be lots of fun to figure that out. :)

    1. Avatar of veruna
      veruna

      The only time I think the bath thing works is when you’re using the removable shower head to let running water be the stimulus instead of your hand or toy. Though that doesn’t always work for me either. So I’m pretty much in the non-bath camp.

    2. Avatar of Savannah Logsdon-Breakstone
      Savannah Logsdon-Breakstone

      If you have oil based lube, it can work. . . But generally not rec’d, especially for the toyless. Probably the only exception in my experience is if you have a toy- but you;ll still need lube depending on how much you secrete during and get off quick. Water definitely is a natural lube killer. :-/

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