March 8, 2022
Masturbation is a bit of an art form: There are endless ways to do it, (pretty much) no method is right or wrong, and it can take some creativity to figure out what works for you. But even if you’ve got your solo-sex moves down pat, learning a new technique could teach you something about your body or help you feel pleasure in a new way. And if you’re in the process of figuring out how to turn yourself on and (potentially) orgasm, switching up your masturbation routine could open up new avenues to enjoyment.
“Experimenting with new masturbation techniques is a way to discover important elements of what you like (or don’t), to stretch yourself sexually in a completely safe context, and to stay engaged with your body and desires—which can change over time,” Carol Queen, sex educator and staff sexologist at Good Vibrations, tells SELF. Just like you can get into a sexual rut with a partner, your masturbation routine can become stagnant, which may leave something to be desired, Queen adds.
Like we said, there’s no wrong way to self-pleasure, and if you’re happy with your current moves (or lack thereof), you–uh–do you. But for those of you who are turned on by the idea of shaking up your solo-sex routine, we asked 12 sex experts to share their favorite masturbation tips. Consider their advice masturbation inspiration.
1. Don’t limit lube to partner penetration. If you like (or want) to incorporate penetration into your masturbation routine, lube can help a dildo or finger go in much more easily, naturally. But a lesser-known fact is that it can also enhance clitoral stimulation, Erica Smith, MEd, sex educator, tells SELF. “When your vulva is slippery, it’s a lot easier to explore with your hands, and it also reduces friction on the clitoris, which some can find painful or unpleasant,” Smith explains. She also suggests using lube with any kind of insertive toy, even if you have natural lubrication and don’t think you “need” it. “It’s not really about needing it, but about adding it as an enhancement,” she says. If you’re using toys, Smith recommends water-based lube, since silicone formulas can break down silicone sex toys. And FYI: If your masturbation exploration involves latex (in, say, a condom you put over a toy), you’ll want to avoid oil-based lube, which can cause the material to deteriorate.