Pleasing yourself has loads of benefits. Here are some new tricks to try. Warning: Read this at home!
If you’re like many women, you’ve had a long-term relationship with a vibrator and maybe, with concentration, you’ve even gotten the deed done during an ad break – without even muting the TV.
Jokes aside, experts agree that masturbation is important. Joburg-based clinical sexologist Catriona Boffard says it lets you take control of your satisfaction, giving you room to try new things without stressing about a partner’s expectations.
She adds that masturbation is a pressure release, a natural sleeping pill and teaches you how your body responds tocertain sexual touches and stimulation. “If you know what feels good, it makes it easier to
guide your partner and get the sexual pleasure and satisfaction you want.”
Still, even if you and your vagina are so in sync you finish each other’s sentences, your sex life with yourself, as with any long-term partner, always has room for improvement. So start by putting your vibrator away. Not forever – just for a few minutes. Because to improve your self-loving skills, the best place to start is the mind.
You need to seduce yourself, says Saskia Michel, MD of sex toy store Matildas.co.za. “Lighting scented candles is a great way to help you switch off from the world and concentrate on yourself,” she says. Porn also works, if that’s your thing. And so does eyes-closed fantasising. Boffard says fantasy is one of the most important aspects of female sexuality: “For women, sex is satisfying when it ticks emotional, fantasy and intimacy boxes. There’s nothing illegal about fantasising about Ryan Gosling while being intimate with your partner; if that means you’ll be more sexually satisfied, they will be too.”
Once your mind is suitably hot and bothered, focus on your body. Although you may already know the spots that send you over the edge, according to Michel this is your chance to discover untapped sources of pleasure. She recommends you pay special attention to your neck, the back of your knees, your thighs and your perineum (the stretch of skin between your vagina and anus). “Erogenous zones are like little buttons,” she adds. “Finding your most sensitive areas is the best way to discover yourself.”
Try A New Position
Variety is key to your sex life, so why shouldn’t that extend to your self-love life? Avoid falling into default getting-off patterns. Change position: if you’re usually on your back in bed, try it on all fours, or sitting in a comfy chair, or even standing, bent over a table or the bed. Try kneeling as if you’re straddling your partner. If you need more convincing to get adventurous, remember that if you go solo exactly the same way every time, you might have more difficulty reaching orgasm when you’re with a partner. So stay flexible.
Speaking of which, consider taking a yoga class and then getting it on with yourself as soon as you get home. Michel says the breath work and flow of the poses allow you to be in the moment and out of your head. In other words, yoga can diminish all those thoughts of your boss, your bank account or whatever other worries might distract you. “Switching off your mind from busy day-today stresses is key,” says Michel.
Now, let’s get back to your vibrator. If yours is a trusty rabbit, it might be time to introduce vibrator 2.0. According to Boffard, G-spot vibrators work because they have a curve at the end, which is specifically tailored for G-spot stimulation. She says it’s not necessarily the bumps and ridges that matter, but making sure that you get what works for you. However, 80 percent of women need clitoral stimulation to climax, so you should look at getting a vibrator that hits both the clitoris and the G-spot. Michel recommends using a waterproof G-spot vibrator, like the luxurious Uma Waterproof G-spot Vibrator (R1215, Matildas.co.za). “Its curves are perfectly designed to fit your body and the strength of its vibrations are sure to hit the spot,” she says.
Draw a bath, climb in and go to town. Before inserting the toy, Boffard recommends you play with your fingers first. “Palm up, curl your finger in a “come here” motion once you’re aroused. You should feel a raised, spongy spot on the front vaginal wall.” Can’t find it? Don’t worry. “Stress and arousal are the worst combination. Some women seem to find it, others just don’t,” adds Boffard.
Don’t feel like embarking on The Great G-Spot Hunt? No problem, says Michel, who is all for clitoral focus. “There’s increasing pressure that you should be able to climax from G-spot stimulation,” she says. “Just do what feels best to you.” She recommends clitoris specific egg-shaped vibrators for easy use and storage. Try something waterproof and rechargeable; these are normally stronger than battery-operated vibrators. The Je Joue MiMi (R1085, Matildas.co.za) has amazingly strong vibrations, as does the more budget-friendly Fun Factory Layaspot (R640, Matildas.co.za). “If no other vibrator has worked for you, Lelo’s new smart wand will get the job done (R1860, Matildas.co.za). But it’s not for the fainthearted!” says Michel.
Of course, toys aren’t everyone’s cup of tea. And that’s fine. All that matters is that you feel good. And if you’re playing sexy music, massaging yourself and writhing in a chair while feeling good, all the better.