This article was scientifically fact-checked by Human Sexuality expert Dr. Laurie Mintz.
Masturbation Month is upon us once again, while acceptance and public discussion of the act continues to grow, there are still discovered many people are insecure about their techniques in practicing the art of self-love.
Every day, LELO fans reach out via email, social media and on Volonté seeking advice about how to actually masturbate and a recurring question keeps upcoming up: “Is the way I masturbate ‘normal’ or ‘correct’?”
While some methods are more common than others, there is no one ‘right way’ to explore self pleasure, so to celebrate masturbation month we’ve compiled 5 of the more creative, although fairly uncommon, methods of achieving personal satisfaction. Still, uncommon doesn’t mean unpleasurable and you may just get some inspiration for some creative self-pleasure sessions yourself!
1. Oral Inclination
If the idea of enjoying oral sex at any time sounds like heaven, then it’s time to sign up for a yoga class because for some men this is actually possible. It’s estimated that fewer than 1% of men have sufficient flexibility and penis length to carry out autofellatio, and there have been no reliably recorded instances of an autocunnilingus being performed.
That’s not to say people don’t keep trying; autofellatio is documented as far back as ancient Egypt in one of the poems of “Book of Overthrowing Apophis”, wherein the sun god Ra had created the god Shu and goddess Tefnut by fellating himself and “spitting out his own semen onto the ground.” Still, think you can never achieve this type of flexibility? Try the LELO Ora-2 as it stimulates the feelings of oral sex—and you don’t have to be a yogi to use it!
2. Bicycle Smiles
Bicycles have a long, historical entanglement with women’s rights. Bicycles saw a boom of popularity in the United States during the 1890s as the women’s suffrage movement was gaining momentum, and the so-called ‘New Women’ emerged. Enjoying greater literal freedom and mobility through with the bicycle, they were less reliant on male chauffeurs and chaperones. As well, restrictive clothing such as corsets and hoop skirts fell out of popularity due to their incompatibility with riding a bike. In 1896 Susan B. Anthony went so far as to say that bicycling had “done more to emancipate women than anything else in the world” in an interview with the New York World’s Nellie Bly.
Of course, there were moral objections to this newer, ’less-feminine’ definition of how a woman behaved, and not just because they were starting to wear bloomers. There was genuine concern over the idea that women might get sexually aroused while riding a bike, which led to the design of bikes with higher handle bars so that women would have to sit more upright on their seats and wouldn’t experience vibrations from bumpy roads near their clitoris.
Thanks to technological advancements, you no longer need to try to ride a bicycle down a bumpy road to get vibrations that feel good! Such vibrations can now be enjoyed from the comfort of one’s home with products like the LELO Smart Wand™ Large.
3. A Quick Refresher
Many new mothers have discovered that using a condom filled with water and frozen to a slush makes for an excellent way to soothe their sore bodies post-childbirth, but you can also use prophylactics to make a cheap (and chilly!) sex toy.
Simply cut a cardboard paper towel roll length-wise and then re-tape it closed to create your ideal diameter. Then, put a condom in the tube and tape the open end around the outside of the paper towel roll. Fill with water, then place the upright tube in the freezer. After it has frozen solid, remove the roll and tie off the end as you would a balloon.
Now, it is important to run this toy under warm water before using; this removes any frost from the outside and will create a thin layer of water within the condom, which will stop it from freezing to your skin if used internally.
4. Mental Stimulation
Thinking yourself off’ isn’t just using your imagination instead of watching porn. (Although to get aroused, we do recommend watching erotica, as both women and men are highly visually stimulated!) Rather, it refers to using your brain to get yourself off without any physical contact.
Sound impossible? Research shows it is possible, although extremely rare. Still, research is also clear that the part of the brain that shuts down (our thinking brain) right before orgasm is the same part that shuts down during meditation. So, for better orgasms, practice meditation to learn to shut your thinking brain off.
It stands for autonomous sensory meridian response and has taken the internet by storm. ASMR is the tingly, feel-good mental sensation that some people experience in response to specific gentle stimuli, like the satisfying sound of someone crinkling foil or watching someone fold paper into origami.
Despite writings on this saying it not being a sexual phenomenon, it’s created some interesting sexual spinoffs. There’s been an emergence of ASMR NSFW (not suitable for work) with unlimited collections of erotic audio. If you’re the type of person who’s ever been aroused by the sound of your neighbors getting it on, try listening to an audio of wet and whimpering sex sounds or a naughty nurse whispering what she’s going to do to you. Leave the visuals to your imagination and see if this type of audio type of love language leave you speechless.
So while there is certainly more than 1 way to masturbate, there is definitely no right way.
Masturbation, whichever way you go about it, is shown to have benefits for both your physical and mental well-being, as well as helping you discover what stimulation works for you. Of course, just because you’ve found one way doesn’t mean that it’s too late to try and find another – and it’s totally normal to get creative!
*In this article, for ease of reader understanding, we are using the words sex and intercourse as synonymous, as is done in popular culture in general. Similarly, we use the word “foreplay” the way it is used in popular culture (i.e., the sexual acts such as oral sex that come before intercourse). However, as aptly pointed out by our sex expert Laurie Mintz, we would also like to acknowledge that such language exalts men’s most reliable rout to orgasm and linguistically erases women’s most reliable route to orgasm—clitoral stimulation, either alone or coupled with penetration. Indeed, only between 4% and 18% of women reliably orgasm from penetration alone. We look forward to the day when such language is not commonly used in culture.
Facts checked by:
Dr. Laurie Mintz
Laurie Mintz, Ph.D., is a professor at the University of Florida, teaching Human Sexuality to hundreds of students a year. She has published over 50 research articles and is a Fellow of the American Psychological Association. Dr. Mintz also has maintained a private practice for over 30 years, working with individuals and couples on general and sexual issues. She is also an author and speaker, spreading scientifically-accurate, sex-positive information to enhance sexual pleasure.