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22 May 2024 (Last updated 22 May 2024)

7 ways to masturbate.

7 ways to masturbate.
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Masturbation techniques to inspire you every day.

We believe in bringing pleasure into the everyday and helping people with vulvas acknowledge how masturbation makes up part of a wellness routine. Solo sex has several health benefits that contribute to our overall well-being - stress relief, increased libido, and boosted self-esteem, to name just a few. Although we champion masturbation in all its mundanity, it’s also a whole lot of fun. Playing with pleasure and trying new masturbation techniques mixes up the routine.

What are the different masturbation techniques?

Masturbation can consist of both external and internal stimulation, of not only the genitals but the entire body. You might like both, you might like only one. As with all things body-related, everyone is different so what works for someone else may not work for you (and vice versa). This really is a case of finding YOUR pleasure preferences. We’re just here to help inspire you with seven, of many, ways to masturbate!

1. Edging technique.

What is edging?

This masturbation technique involves getting ever so close to orgasm, to the edge of that pleasure peak, but not going over it. Controlling your orgasm by stopping stimulation just before climax, over and over again, makes the orgasm intensely satisfying when you finally choose to let go. Edging encourages you to stay in the pleasure session for longer, and truly concentrate on the sensations you’re experiencing.

How to do it? 

A combo of hand and vibe stimulation! Use the vibrator’s settings to get close to the edge, then change to the lowest speed - or, pull it away and use your fingers to slowly build up again.

Edging recommendation.

The Poet's easy-to-squeeze sensors on the side make it the perfect edging toy. Press for faster suction, then release to put the brakes on stimulation.

2. Shallowing technique.

What is it?

Shallowing is a gentle way to try penetration without going all in. The first third of the vagina is where 90% of its nerve endings, and this technique is all about staying near the vaginal entrance.

How to try shallowing?

Start by placing your fingers or vibe at the entrance of your vagina and pressing gently, barely going in. Take your time and breathe slowly, building up to small movements in your wrist to draw circles or wriggle around.

Our recommendation.

Versatility at its best! The Billionaire's rounded tip is made for shallowing as it provides a gentle massage around the edge of the vaginal entrance. 

3. Grounding technique.

What is grounding?

Many people swear on this technique as a way to ground their sexual energy, essentially it’s all about cupping the vulva after orgasm. Maintaining a broader touch can soothe the sensations, keep the intimacy (just think of it like a vulva hug, a key source of our favorite love hormone, oxytocin), and build you up for more pleasure. Grounding is soothing, allowing you to stay in the present rather than immediately moving on with your day (or grabbing your phones - we’re guilty too) - easing you back into the world after an orgasmic high. This technique is good practice if you want to experience multiple orgasms - people with vulvas have a refractory period that is much shorter than those with a penis, meaning the body physiologically can become aroused and enjoy stimulation again very soon after orgasm.

How to do it?

Use the palm of your hand to simply hold still as the intense post-orgasmic sensations dissipate, breathing deep and slowly. After a few moments try returning to sexual stimulation, partnered or solo, and notice any difference you might have sensitivity-wise. Or, maybe even the potential for another orgasm!

Our recommendation.

The Ballerina is the perfect vibe for organically incorporating grounding into your masturbation session. Its pebble shape fits in the palm of your hand and your vulva, too. After orgasm, switch The Ballerina off or to its lowest vibration setting. Then, slowly increase the speed and add in pulsations with its six speeds and six pulsations settings - including a surprise me mode.

4. Orbiting technique.

What is orbiting?

This type of stimulation is all about going around and around the clitoral glans. This external part of the clitoris is connected to the 10,000 nerve fibers and is super sensitive to touch. Think of it as clit rubbing, but with style - to infinity and beyond!

How to orbit?

Circle around the clitoris with your fingers or vibrator. You can vary pressure, from gliding along the surface to actively pressing. Explore by creating patterns such as a figure eight or tighter or bigger circles. Focus on how it feels to change direction, from clockwise to anticlockwise, or by focusing on one side of the clitoral glans, rather than right on top.

Our recommendation.

As the clitoris becomes aroused, natural lubrication often occurs. Don’t worry if not, it’s completely normal and doesn’t mean your clit stimulation isn’t working. There are many reasons why we might need extra wetness, and in our humble opinion, there’s no such thing as too much water-based lube! Why are we talking about lube? Because it can reduce the friction of clit rubbing and heighten sensations. Vibes set for orbit? Try The Surfer.

5. Doubling-up technique.

What is it?

This technique is the stimulation of two erogenous spots at the same time. Clitoral stimulation is key to climax for a majority of us, so adding this to vaginal play is very fulfilling. Plus, 40% of women say that touch on or inside the anus makes vaginal penetration or clitoral touch more pleasurable.

How to double up?

Think about the types of stimulation you enjoy and how you can enhance them. Doubling up can be done with toys; a toy and your hand; or, maybe you can go completely manual! You can mix’n’match where you stimulate depending on your pleasure preferences at the time. If you decide to include the clitoris, focus on how the sensations change when you add the other stimulation. To make penetration the most pleasurable, always use lube.

Our recommendation.

Dual stimulation with a rabbit vibrator is probably the easiest way to double up, as it requires only one hand (which makes it easier when sexting or watching your fave ethical porn). To enhance clitoral stimulation, you can also try anal play with a beginner’s butt plug, like The Neighbor, that's easy to insert and will stay in place.

6. Layering technique.

What is it?

Sometimes, the clitoris can feel extremely sensitive, and stimulating it can be too intense. It's worth noting that the sensitivity of your clitoris can vary throughout your life and even day-to-day, especially if you experience the menstrual cycle. The layering technique allows for indirect stimulation of the clitoris. Unlike the princess and the pea (though the clitoris is royalty, IMO), adding layer-upon-layer can decrease the impact of stimulation and mute sensations to make it easier to play!

How to layer?

Put underwear or bedsheets between your vulva and fingers or vibrator to create a cushion for touch. Try different materials and a number of layers to see what feels most satisfying for you. Or, even turn it into a way of building arousal, by removing layer by layer throughout your solo sessions. Additionally, you can use your labia majora to sandwich the clitoris to an au natural layer!

Our recommendation.

When it comes to comfort and clitoral sensitivity, we think that the vibrator material is important, too. Super-soft silicone is all we work with at Smile Makers, but The Whisperer lipstick vibrator is also exceptionally squishy. Designed to be gentle, it flexes as you press it against your clitoris. Plus, it's super silent—if you’re using your vibrator on top of the bed sheets, you don’t need to worry about muffling a noise. 

7. Framing technique. 

What is it?

A mix of masturbation and mindfulness, framing uses the power of the brain. Take your mind off literally feeling yourself, and get into your sensual feelings with your imagination instead. Dream up a scenario, and use this to frame your pleasure.

How to try framing?

Put in your earphones, close your eyes, and disconnect from the world. Listen to some audio erotica - or nothing - the earphones are just a way to block out other distractions.

Our recommendation.

Scented sex candles don't just set the mood; they take your mind back to sexy moments. Sense of smell is the most direct pathway to memory and an erotic smell can ignite arousal.

Looking for more inspiration? Our limited edition, curated ‘Vibes of the Week’ box serves as a reminder of all the reasons masturbation is healthy with a vibrator for every day of the week. The box includes inspiring techniques to mix up routine, too.

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