I find it fascinating when discussing sex repertoire with people (couples and singles) the number of women who report oral sex does nothing for her. I use this as an opportunity to explore relationship dynamics and techniques being used. More often than not, the woman’s partner does not know what he (or she) is doing and the receiver of course does not know how to ask. This month’s blog is dedicated to opening the conversation between partners about oral sex on women.
Cunnilingus is the technical term for oral sex performed on a woman. There are many different terms – so more appropriate than others – yet most common used terms include going down on her, or simply oral sex.
Tip # 1: Talk about oral sex and what you like and do not like.
As with all sexual, it is necessary to talk about it. Set a time with your partner to discuss what she might like to try in oral sex. Do your research beforehand. Have some ideas. There is plenty on the web about oral sex techniques. So often I talk with a partner who says that they had planned a great sexual night and their partner was not receptive (too tired, wanted to watch a movie). Surprises are fun. Ensure your partner knows she is going to have a surprise – just not what it is. So first step first: talk about oral sex.
Tip #2: Oral sex is a regular and popular form of sex play enjoyed by around two-thirds to three quarters of women.
Approximately two-thirds of women have experienced oral sex. Oral sex is more common between same-sex attracted women than their heterosexual counterparts 1,2. Yet, nearly 68% of women surveyed in the Sex in Australia study reported receiving oral sex 2. Higher rates of oral sex were reported in the 20-29 (74.8%) and 30-39 (73.9%) year old age brackets than the 16-19 (50.1%), with frequency of oral sex decreasing with age (40-49 y.o. = 67.1% and 50-59 y.o. 54%). Of the 7,698 women surveyed 75.7% reported their last sexual act involved a man performing oral sex on her.
Tip #3: Oral sex is a form of sex play in its own right.
Many couples use oral sex as foreplay. I always suggest that firstly, any form of sexual activity where penetration occurs is in fact a form of sex and not foreplay. In oral sex on women the tongue penetrates the vulva (or anus if rimming). Many couples do not consider oral sex can be a form of sex on its own without the need for penile penetration. Good oral sex can satisfy a woman and allow both partners to feel great.
Tip #4: Practice your oral exercises before trying to perform oral sex.
Exercise for oral sex is important. We are not going for the five minute wonder guys! You will need to build some strength and stamina of the oral muscles. See the boxed text for simple oral exercises to help you get started. Practice makes perfect so practice the exercises regularly.
Tip #5: Know her genitalia
Sex education in school provides minimal information which will be useful in oral sex. What you learnt from your parents and especially your friends is most likely even more useless. Spend some time understanding the different parts of a woman’s genitalia. The parts we can see is called the vulva (not the vagina which most people are taught). The vulva is made of the clitoris (which is wishbone shaped and the clitoral legs – the clitoral crura – extend down between the labia majora and labia minora) and clitoral hood. The clitoris has approximately 15,000 nerve endings and is the only organ whose sole purpose is sexual arousal and pleasure! The labia minora (inner lips) and labia majora (outer lips) also form part of the vulva. The perineum and anus – although not part of the vulva are also sensitive areas which can be included in the oral repertoire.
Tip #6: Prepare thy selves!
For him: Ensure your mouth is fresh; your lips are soft (apply a lip balm) and you have shaved! Nothing is more painful than gravel rash on a vulva and inner thighs caused by the scraping of the five o’clock shadow. For Her: Ensure you are showered and refreshed. Do not apply perfumes as these can react with your body. Maybe even consider showering together to maximise the journey you will experience together.
Tip #7: Comfort for the both of you is key.
When preparing for oral sex think about where and the positon of your partner. She needs to be comfortable and so do you. Try positioning a pillow under her buttocks which will provide a supportive position for your partner and you with leverage. Or maybe try with her lying on the edge of bed with her legs hanging off the bed. This will allow you or her top move her legs and give you better access. Combine both.
Tip #8: Allow your partner to relax and enjoy the moments.
Along with comfort, relaxation is also important. Begin with gentle touch and kissing of her body. Allow your hands to warm her body and relax her. Encourage her breathe deeply and let go of her worries. Music, candles and words of love are all actions we can add to create an environment which will relax her (and you too).
Tip #9: Begin with broad movements over the genitalia then focus to specific areas.
Begin with warm-up techniques. Begin with gentle kisses and strokes of your tongue. Ease in gently – tease with your tongue. Use your fingers to stroke and caress and help arouse her as you begin your oral routine. Do not just focus on the clitoris. Use your tongue, lips and mouth to pleasure all of her genitalia.
Tip #10: Be aware and mindful of your partner’s breathe, sounds and movements.
Listen with your eyes, ears and body – pay attention to her breathing. Our breathe changes during a sexual act and as we build higher levels of arousal. Know her breathe and use as an indication to what she likes. Watch her moves – feel her body movements with your hands and against your face. Your partner is likely to respond to pleasure with encouraging moves. Listen to her sounds. We all make sounds during sex; these can be great indicators to our levels of enjoyment.
Tip #11: Use toys – simple toys can add pleasure.
Oral sex play is about playing and of course using toys during oral sex can add to the enjoyment our partner receives. Gentle vibrations add to the sensations you are producing with your mouth. Easy to hold and small adult sex toys, like a bullet, are ideal. You are not fighting with toy for position keep it simple. The focus is on you giving pleasure through your tongue, lips and mouth.
Tip #12 : Rhythm is the answer.
Building the crescendo – increase pressure and speed, alternate your tongue and lip movements. By now you will (hopefully) know which areas are more sensitive and begin to focus on these areas (clitoris, clitoral hood, the labia). Check her response and respond accordingly with your movements. Avoid machine-gunning – no woman likes being pistoned by a tongue – it is not a car engine guys! Try movements like eating an ice-cream.
Tip #13 : Enjoy the journey and make it worthwhile.
The Curtain Call. The aim is pleasure and enjoyment. There does not need to be a goal of orgasm. It is about the journey to enjoyment. Many people are orgasm focused and forget the real sexual pleasure is in the voyage not the end destination – like a cruise it is where you go and what you do during the trip.
May you have a standing ovation and calls of bravo from your partner as she calls for encore again, and again and again!
Remember a healthy life includes a healthy sex life. And a healthy sex life is sane, (con)sensual and safe.
Enjoy! Dr Christopher
Dr Christopher Fox is a Psychosexual and Relationship Therapist at Sex Life Therapy in Melbourne. He has clinics in East Melbourne and Frankston.
Power Bullet 2” is a small intense vibrating bullet. Easy to hold in your hand while performing magical acts with your tongue and lips on your partner.
J2S Oral Vibrator by Toynary is a lip gem you slip on the corner of your mouth for gentle vibrations through your lips and tongue.
Foxy Mini Vibrator by Tickler: A compact bullet by Tickler.
Honi Vibrating Bullet is another compact bullet vibrator which is easy to use while preforming oral sex. The Honi is also insertable with a string attached.
Mia 2 Mini Travel Vibrator is a bullet vibrator produced by the world’s leading brand – Lelo.
References: 1 Grulich, A., de Visser, R., Smith, A.M.A., Rissel, C., & Richters, J., (2003). Homosexual experiences and recent homosexual encounters. Australian and New Zealand Journal of Public Health, 27,2, 155-163. 2de Visser, R., Smith, A.M.A., Rissel, C., Richters, J., & Grulich, A. (2003). Heterosexual expereince and recent heterosexual encoutners among a representative sample of adults. Australian and New Zealand Journal of Public Health, 27,2, 146-154. Disclaimer: The information contained in this document should be read as general in nature and is only to provide an overview of the subject matter covered. Please read product packaging carefully and follow all instructions.