Developing intimate lubricants for women, we researched the physiological mechanisms at play in women’s lubrication during sex. We found the learnings very interesting and as, some of you also asked us to clarify what was the difference between wetness and female ejaculation, we invited a sexologist to walk us through the different intimate fluids the female body produces.
Wetness, mucus, cyprine, lubrication, female ejaculation: the fluids produced by female genitalia have been labelled many things, and rarely are they self-explanatory. Here is a comprehensive overview of a woman’s vaginal secretions and their purpose.
Cervical mucus refers to the fluid produced by the endocervical glands found in the cervix, which connects the uterus to the vagina. These glands continuously produce a small amount of a liquid-like substance that flows down the vaginal wall. Slightly viscous, the cervical mucus stretches between the fingers and resembles raw egg whites. Its role is twofold, and depends on the phases of the ovulatory cycle:
When sexually aroused, the Bartholin’s glands, which are located near the vaginal opening near the vaginal lips, will produce fluids to lubricate the vagina. This lubrication is meant to facilitate penetration and thrusting during sex. Hormonal changes, such as a decline in estrogen after childbirth or increase in prolactin levels when breastfeeding, can lead to insufficient vaginal lubrication. To alleviate any pain or dryness following such changes, it is advisable to use a personal lubricant during penetrative sex.
Although the vagina’s mucus membrane does not contain any secretory glands, it still reacts to sexual arousal. Upon arousal, the blood vessels swell, kicking off a process called vaginal transudation. In this process, fluids called the transudate are released through the membrane’s walls and combine with other vaginal secretions. This mixture of fluids also serves as a lubricant for vaginal penetration. This liquid has also been referred to as “cyprine”, but scientists aren’t in agreement on what is classified as cyprine: it is either the secretions of Bartholin’s glands or vaginal transudate, or a mixture of both. In any case, the term cyprine is almost always associated with female excitement and lubrication.
Last but not least, female ejaculation yields fascination for many, and its mysteries are only now beginning to unfold. Researchers have discovered that, upon orgasm, some women emit a fluid composed of vaginal secretions and urine, plus one other substance in some cases. This substance is a fluid produced by the paraurethral glands. For most women, these glands – also known as the “female prostate” or “Skene’s glands” – will release a discharge during climax, though it often goes unnoticed. In rare, yet normal, instances, this fluid will be expelled with urine in the form of abrupt and uncontrollable jets. To date, no direct correlation has been established between female ejaculation and the intensity of pleasure experienced.
Written by Charlotte Creplet, sexologist at Sexocorner
What if we decided to make our periods a much more pleasant and fun time? We know of an unsuspected ally to cushion up and take care of ourselves when Aunt Flow is in town.
Vaginal stimulation, clitoral play, labia sensitivity…. as we design our vibrators for women,we stay up-to-date with the latest research on female anatomy and pleasure by working with the medical community. Sensual toys are great tools to explore one’s body, but having access to reliable knowledge about sex and anatomy is key to unlock one’s pleasure potential. That’s why we invite sexologists on our blog. This week, we talk clitoral vs vaginal orgasm: what’s the real deal?
As we work with the medical community to create intimate products for women, we have in mind that our sexuality evolves over the course of our lives.