It's the most wonderful time of the year — not Christmas, not New Years, May is National Masturbation Month. Yes, it's at thing and yes, you really should be celebrating. I mean, a lot of celebrate at least a few times a week anyway, but why not? "There are an endless number of reasons to masturbate. Learning how to make yourself orgasm is the most empowering experience you will ever have," Vanessa Marin, sex therapist and founder of Finishing School, tells Bustle. "You'll also learn how to teach a partner how to bring you pleasure."
So how can we celebrate masturbation month? Well, by making our masturbation routines even better. Whether you're single or in a relationship, experienced or brand new to some self-love, there's always a way to up your masturbation game. And it's something you really should be making time for. Not only are orgasms good for you, they're an important way to focus on yourself for a little while. Experimenting on your own will empower you to be more experimental in the bedroom — and have a better idea of exactly what works for you, so you know what to ask for.
Here's how to up your game for National Masturbation Month, because you really, really deserve it:
Everyone wants to have a more intense orgasm, but it's all about patience. "Edging is when you achieve a longer, more intense orgasm by getting close to orgasm, then preventing it before it happens," Stacy Rybchin, founder and CEO of My Secret Soiree, a pleasure-based sexual health and wellness education company, tells Bustle. "You could pause, go to zero and then rebuild or you could distract yourself away from the orgasm, shifting the focus... before you start again." It's so tempting to go right for an orgasm— especially if you're on a roll— but if you try edging there may just be a big payoff.
2In Fact, Check Out OMGYes
OMGYes is a site dedicated to female pleasure. Not only does it give you plenty of masturbation videos and tutorials that allow you to learn and practice more orgasm techniques than you could imagine, it's inspired by over 1,000 women's real orgasms. It's seriously worth checking out.
3Try A New Toy
If you never tried a vibrator, it's time to mix it up. "Whether you want to stimulate those often neglected erogenous zones, or just want to take your masturbation to the next level, I highly recommend adding a toy into the mix," Emily Morse, Doctor of Human Sexuality and host of the Sex With Emily podcast, tells Bustle.
It doesn't have to be anything big or too high-tech, in fact a small bullet vibrator is easy to incorporate without being intimidating.
4Or Get Other Objects Into The Game
If a vibrator isn't your thing, you can always just experiment with what's around— anything that gives extra friction or pressure. “Women use fingers, pillows, blankets, vibrators, or a favorite object," Dr. Sharon Thompson, MD, MPH, FACOG tells Bustle. "There may not be as many terms for, or jokes about, female masturbation but that doesn't mean it's not happening all around you… literally." Hint: Shower heads. Shower heads are your friend.
5Talk About It
Want to up your masturbation game? Why not go ahead and open up the conversation. "I think there are three main ways talking about [masturbation] can be beneficial," Sexologist and author Dr. Nikki Goldstein tells Bustle. "First of all to normalize it, especially for woman. The more we talk about it the more we start to understand that everyone does it or at least has the desire to. The other is swapping secret and tips." If you start opening up, you'll feel more relaxed and you might even learn something new.
6Make Time For It Every Day
Practice really does make perfect. “The Big O can come to visit any day of any week and, sometimes, come banging on the door on multiple occasions. Women are not born with a finite set of orgasms,” Dr. Angela DeRosa, author, speaker and founder of DeRosa Medical tells Bustle. “So bang away.” The more you do it, the more you can experiment and learn about yourself.
7Get Your Head In The Game
Come up with new ways to engage your brain. Either think about your favorite fantasy, watch porn with a storyline you like, or try reading some erotica. "Get your brain on board with masturbation and your body will thank you," Morse says. "Remember that arousal starts in your head and works its way down. If your mind is good and turned on, it won’t be long until the rest of your body follows suit. To get that big sexy brain on board, start exploring your fantasies and finding new mental triggers that can fuel your self-love sessions."
8Go For A Blended Orgasm
First off, there's nothing wrong with not being able to have a vaginal orgasm (or any type of orgasm for that matter), but it's worth seeing if you can go for a blended one — that means stimulating your clitoris and G-spot at the same time. But don't worry if penetration doesn't work for you. “By no means do I want women who cannot have an orgasm during vaginal intercourse to feel shame or think they have a sexual problem,” Holistic Sexologist and Sexuality Educator, Lisa Hochberger, tells Bustle. Just play around and see what feels good.
9Be Liberal With Lube
Just because you don't need it, doesn't mean you shouldn't use it. Lube — with your toy or just your fingers — can totally power up a masturbation session. The sensation is different and exciting, so you feel like you're treating yourself.
10Hang Out With Your G-Spot
The G-spot is a sensitive area of tissue that sends some women over the moon. If you put a finger inside you and make a 'come hither' motion, you should feel a bumpy, slightly rough bit of tissue above. Try stimulating that area and see what happens — take your time.
Teasing is a really fun during sex — but there's no reason you can't do it to yourself. "Hinting is building anticipation and intensifying pleasure by moving over a sensitive spot and only occasionally touching it," Rybchin says. "For a woman, you could hint over the entire vulva, the clitoris or just the opening." Building anticipation is always a bonus.
12Go For Mutual Masturbation
Masturbation doesn't to be a solo activity. If you have a partner, masturbating together is not only incredibly sexy, it can teach you both about what the other one likes. Celebrate National Masturbation Month as a couple.
13Practice With Rhythms
If you're anything like me, you'll have a tendency to default to the same rhythm every time you masturbate — but there are huge benefits to mixing it up. "Experiment with rhythm and the exact same motion can feel very different," Rybchin says. "You can rub, tap, and penetrate. You can also slow down the particular rhythm in the buildup to prolong and extend the orgasm."
14Mix Up Your Position
Just like the rhythm, there's a good chance that you have a default masturbation position."Don’t be afraid to move around or switch up your go-to position," Morse says. "If you’re usually flat on your back when masturbating, try doing it standing up, turning onto your stomach, or spreading your legs farther apart then closer together. Every new position allows you to reach orgasm in a different way, and may provide you with new sensations to choose from." It's a really easy way to create a whole new experience, just with a small shift of your body position.
15Go For Multiple Orgasms
With no refractory period to worry about, women can orgasm over and over (and over). Just because you've finished, doesn't mean you're done. Wait a bit if you're feeling really sensitive, then go for round two. And three...
We tend to be creatures of habit, but there are so many ways to make masturbating better. Take this month to try at least one or two twists to your normal routine — and enjoy all of the new sensations.