Olivia Harvey
March 31, 2018 11:47 am
WIN-Initiative / Getty Images

So. Masturbation is a topic that is often left out of sex-ed classes, the “birds and the bees” convo, and honestly, most conversations altogether. This is kind of shocking due to the fact that a 2014 National Survey of Sexual Health and Behavior study found that 78% of Americans 14 and older reported they’ve masturbated at some point in their lives. So, if no one is really comfortable with talking about it, how do you know if you’re masturbating correctly?

We talked to sexuality and relationship expert Dr. Logan Levkoff and certified sex educator Shan Boodram to explain the dos and don’ts of masturbation.

The good news is there’s really no wrong or right way to masturbate. “If it’s consensual (and with masturbation, that shouldn’t be an issue), then there is certainly no wrong way to masturbate,” Dr. Levkoff told us. “That being said, long nails or unwashed hands are never a great idea.” Noted.

There are many different ways you can approach masturbation, and you’ll find that some methods are more effective than others. For example, some women can get off by simply stimulating the clitoris (the little sensitive spot the very top of the vagina) with their hands, whereas others find that insertion — whether using one’s fingers or a sex toy — is what gets them to orgasm.

“If you are looking for a step up from using your own (washed) hands,” Dr. Levkoff said, “a vibrating ring is a great place to start. The vibration and bullet are small and it is a great way to test out sexual enhancements.”

Fingers and toys aside, being in the right mindset might be the most crucial thing to help get to where you want to be. So, if you’re feeling nervous, just try to relax and feel yourself in the moment. Getting too in your head during self-love time is a sure-fire way to stifle any fireworks. Remember: There’s no one else in the room, so do your thang and don’t feel shy!

The act of masturbating is all about self-exploration and becoming a “sexually empowered” person, Dr. Levkoff told us. Getting to know your body and what you like is so important for your own self-esteem and understanding of your own body. And masturbation can ultimately improve any future sexual activity with another person.

And from a health perspective, knowing what’s “normal” down there — how it feels, looks, smells, etc. — can help you better identify if something is out of sorts. And if that happens, call your doctor.

Once you start getting the hang of it and learning what you like, you’ll find that masturbation relieves stress, improves your sleep, makes you feel great about yourself and your sexuality, and can actually help strengthen your romantic relationships.

As long as you’re having fun and feeling great about yourself, you’re masturbating correctly. We wish you luck on your solo sex journey.

Advertisement