When it comes to masturbation, there can be just as much play involved as there is when it comes to sex with a partner, so you should never be afraid to experiment — after all, masturbation has so many health benefits. So it's time to get in the solo sex mood, and that all starts with your mind. "Get your brain on board with masturbation and your body will thank you," Emily Morse, Doctor of Human Sexuality and host of the Sex With Emily podcast, tells Bustle. "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." And that's only the beginning of the ways to spice things up during solo sex.
So, in the spirit of National Masturbation Month (though you can — and totally should — celebrate solo sex year-round), it's time for 28 ways to up your masturbation game. That's right, 28. I know, it seems like a lot. But this is your pleasure I'm talking about it — it's all worth it. So why not spend some time trying them all?
1Take Your Time
If you're anything like me, masturbation is an ''as long as it takes and no longer" situation. Instead, take your time with it. Set the mood, relax, and work your way up to it. “In my book, Wanting to Want: What Kills Your Sex Life and How to Keep It Alive, I encourage people to make space for the erotic in their lives — both physically and mentally," Dr. Madeleine Castellanos, who practices sex therapy in New York, tells Bustle. "This means creating not just the space and the place, but also the sexy frame of mind that is the biggest fuel for sexual arousal." Giving yourself enough time is important — make it an event.
2Try A Blended Orgasm
Many of us need clitoral stimulation to orgasm, but it doesn't have to be just that. While you play with your clit, use a toy or your fingers to stimulate your G-spot and go for a blended orgasm aka a clitoral and vaginal orgasm at the same time. Even if you don't get the double whammy, you'll still enjoy the ride.
3Try Some New Lube
First off, if you don't use lube — try lube. And if you already use it, try something different, like a warming lubricant to add a new sensation into the mix. “Lube revolutionizes sex lives and opens up a world of erotic possibilities,” Astroglide's Resident Sexologist, Dr. Jess, tells Bustle. It can be a serious game-changer.
4Enjoy A Finger Tip Vibrator
If full-blown vibrators aren't your thing, a little fingertip vibrator is less intimidating and easier to play with. Simply put it on the tip of your finger and all of your touches will have a whole new intensity. There are plenty out there, like Jimmy Jane's Hello Touch X. "Worn on the fingers, it can be used as a fingertip vibrator or an electrostimulator," JoEllen Notte, a writer and educator, tells Bustle. "It's perfect for folks who are a little kink-curious." Sounds like a good time.
Edging is a great masturbation technique if you want to play around and don't know where to start. "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. The delayed gratification will be so worth it — if you can last.
7Explore A New Zone
We get into masturbation habits — and we need to break out of them. If you always go for your clit or another sensitive spot, try to mix it up. Feel around other parts of the vulva and see what new areas of fun you can find.
8Try Anal Play
Hey, it's a sensitive zone too. And if you haven't tried it, there's a whole lot of possibility. Start by feeling the area around the outside and go from there.
9Get A Partner Involved
Masturbation is a solo activity but you don't have to be alone. Mutual masturbation is an amazing way to see what your partner is into, by watching them do it to themselves. Oh, and it's a huge turn on.
10Treat Yourself To An OMGYes Subscription
Whether you use a waterproof toy, your hand, or even the shower head — there are so many ways to make your masturbation water-friendly. And going into the bath just adds a layer of luxury to your masturbation session.
12Try For Multiple Orgasms
Once you pop, the fun don't stop. Multiple orgasms is one of the amazing bonuses of being a woman — why not go for it? “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. Even if you don't get there, you'll have fun trying.
13Use An Oral Simulator
14Try An Orgasming Enhance Gel
Instead of going right to porn or whatever's in your typical masturbation routine, try letting your imagination run wild. You may discover some fantasies that you never know you had. And those can come in handy.
16Focus On Your Breathing
Breathing not only focuses and relaxes you, it can increase oxygen levels to the blood, giving us an energy boost. Plus, it helps you get in the moment and feel more mindful. "A mindful approach to life generally means doing one thing at a time and doing only that," relationship therapist Aimee Hartstein, LCSW tells Bustle. Breathe in, breathe out.
17Try A New Time Of Day
Mix up your routine by fitting in a masturbation session as soon as you wake up — or use it to break up your day. It will feel extra indulgent at a time you wouldn't normally masturbate.
18Change Your Position
Most of us have a go-to masturbation position. Mine is fetal, but we don't need to look into that. Whatever you tend to go for, mix it up. Get on all fours, try your other side, lay on your stomach — it's a whole new experience.
19Get Erotica Involved
As Dr. Morse said, a lot of the orgasm comes from your mind. Check out some erotica to appeal to your upstairs and your downstairs.
You know that spot that gets you off? Don't go right for that. Trying going for the area around that, in a technique known as layering. It may take a little longer, but there will be payoff.
If traditional porn isn't your thing, don't worry. More and more people are moving to Tumblr for their porn needs. I didn't know how it worked, either, but with a little exploring you can find anything on there. Seriously, it's a goldmine.
22Listen To Sounds Of Pleasure
Sounds of Pleasure is just what it says — the sounds of people having a great time. Play it in the background and then let it be the soundtrack for whatever fantasy you like.
Teasing is fun with a partner — so why not try it with yourself? Start masturbating, but before you get too worked up, stop. Then go about your day for a bit and come back to it. It'll help keep that sexual energy up all day long and make the orgasm more intense when it comes.
24Try Vibrating Underwear
25Nipple Play, Baby
It's a major erogenous zone and it's so easy to access them, but for some reason a lot of people forget about nipples when they masturbate. “Don’t just dive into your clit all at once," says Castellanos. "See what other sensations can add to your sexual arousal and blood flow,” Start by playing with just the nipples before moving down.
26Do It Somewhere Unusual
Who says you need to stay in the bedroom? Masturbation can travel, you know. There are lots of unusual places to masturbate — and it's a lot easier to do discreetly than having sex with a partner.
27Try Phone Sex
Phone sex is just a fancy way to masturbate. If your partner is far away — or even if they're not — try dirty talk on the phone or over Skype for a totally new take on self-pleasure.
28Whatever You've Always Wanted To Try
Any naughty trick you wanted to try? Any fantasy you haven't explored? A toy that has piqued your interest? It's time to really go for it.
There are so many ways to up your masturbation game, so let your imagination run wild.