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6 oral sex techniques that deserve some kind of medal

Why yes you can help your partner finally nail oral sex

There's an old Esquire survey that keeps making its rounds on the Internet. Initially published in 2010 and still buzzing about in 2016, The Esquire Survey of the American Woman asks plenty of revealing questions — like how much women earn, if they'd ever consider plastic surgery and if they liked receiving oral sex.

You can probably guess that the last question went over like a lead balloon. While oral sex sounds like a great appetizer to the main event in theory, 10 percent of women said they didn't like it at all. And a whopping 44 percent of women said it could be "nice" every once in a while. What gives? Well, you know, and we know, that many aren't as proficient as they claim to be in the ways of the tongue beneath the sheets. And many of us women are shy about asking for what we want in bed, making even the best attempt at oral very awkward indeed.

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Believe it or not, these tips, coupled with some expert guidance, can help make receiving oral fun again. As you might have guessed, it's all about finding out what works for you and what doesn't — and getting comfortable using your sexy bedroom voice to direct traffic:

1. Variety is key. We already know that variety is the spice of life, and this couldn't ring truer than when it comes to oral sex. In other words, always keep her guessing, and she's likely to do you the same favor in return. "Different strokes may work better on different days. If you find something she likes, come back to it repeatedly, with pauses in between," Janet Lieberman, CTO at Dame Products, says, "Much like the trick of making a pool feel warmer by getting out and getting back in, taking a quick break and coming back to it provides a boost in intensity. It also helps you avoid overstimulating a specific cluster of nerves."

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2. Say a little prayer. For those feeling nervous about performing downtown, it may help to send up a prayer — and try the praying position first. Eric Marlowe Garrison, clinical sexologist and bestselling author of Mastering Multiple Position Sex, says of his favorite hands-on oral technique, "Because I believe that perfect practice makes perfect, something I learned from my high school marching band director, it's important that she help him with his technique. One of the ways that I'd recommend this happen is that she places her hands as though she's praying, and she drops them down to where her vulva is. She can do this fully clothed, or she can do this partially clothed, or she can do this naked. With her thumb as the clitoris and the space between the two index fingers as the introitus, she can talk to him about how and where he needs to use his fingers, tongue or toys. She can also ask her partner to put his hands in the same position, and then show him how it can be done."

3. Take things slow. Don't act like a hungry, slobbery brute. Once you make it to her clit and vagina, gently lick all around. Direct stimulation can be too intense for some, so explore the surrounding area. Ask her where she likes to be touched. You don't have to be rough with your mouth unless she wants you to. It's always best to start off slow, unless she specifically requests otherwise. Some women do like it when you roughly use your tongue and mouth, but only do so if she asks.

Alexandra Fine, CEO at Dame Products, agrees that slow and steady wins the race, "There are lots of tips and tricks on how to do the deed, but where most men fail in cunnilingus is during the arousal phase. Women can take 20 minutes plus to get physically aroused. That means that, however slowly you think you are getting from her mouth to her clit — go slower! Wait until she arches her back and thrusts her hips up — then you'll know you've hit the spot."

Next Up: Try the reverse hug technique

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