Emma McGowan is a sex positive feminist and SFSI-endorsed sex educator whose hobbies include embroidery, sewing ridiculous clothing, oversharing on the internet, connecting with other women and femmes, and reading at least three books a week. Her work has appeared in Mashable, Broadly Mic, The Bold Italic, The Daily Dot's The Kernel, and her own site, Kink&Code.
Latest Articles

Healthy Relationships Are Predicted By How Well You Know Each Other, Not How Alike You Are

My partner and I are very different. He’s an introvert — I’m an extrovert. He’s a minimalist — I love kitsch. He wears all black — I prefer bright, clashing colors. He’s tech — I’m handmade. I wouldn’t go so far as to say we fit under the “opposites …
By Emma McGowan

Here's The One Time When Where Pooping Might Push Your IUD Out

You’ve just gone through the process of having your IUD inserted. You’re back home. You’re hanging out. And… You have to poop. Suddenly the thought flashes through your mind: “Is it possible for my IUD to fall out from pooping?” It’s a scary thought,…
By Emma McGowan

11 Things To Do With Your BFF On Valentine's Day That Cost Practically Nothing

Valentine’s Day doesn’t have to be expensive — and it doesn’t have to be about romantic love. My favorite thing about Valentine’s Day is that you can celebrate it however you want, or even have an anti-celebration. If you hate the whole shebang, you …
By Emma McGowan

This Photo Series Will Change Everything You Thought You Knew About Non-Vanilla Sex

The conversations about sex and sexuality have been pretty grim lately. Important. Necessary. Potentially world-changing. But — grim. And so while our national conversation is focused on consent, rape culture, and #MeToo, I’m excited to share a sex-r…
By Emma McGowan

11 DIY Valentine's Day Gifts That Are The Perfect Way To Save Money & Show Your Partner You Care

There are a lot of Valentine’s Day haters out there — and for good reason. For a lot of people, Valentine’s Day has become less about expressing love and more about spending money. And on top of that, from chocolate boxes to one-time use greeting car…
By Emma McGowan

8 STIs You Can Get Without Having Intercourse

Fun fact: You don’t have to have sexual intercourse to get a sexually transmitted infection (STI). But before we dive into the specifics of how that’s possible, I want to do some defining of terms. When I say “intercourse,” I’m referring to penis-in-…
By Emma McGowan

People Are Live Tweeting Their Period & It Proves How Different Menstruation Is For Everyone

PMS is one of those things that a lot of people who have periods can related to. However, my little sister recently told me that she'd never assume to know what another person's PMS was like. That really got me thinking. I'd always thought of PMS as …
By Emma McGowan

Sorry, You Can't Reuse Condoms — Unless It's One Of These

Can condoms be reused? At first glance, you might think… Maybe? Condoms are made of strong material, designed to take a lot of pressure and friction. That strength would suggest that you could reuse them if you wanted to? Maybe wash them out, lube th…
By Emma McGowan

3 Types Of Non-Latex Condoms That Protect Against STDs — And 1 That Absolutely Doesn't

When it comes to STI protection, you can’t really beat condoms. If used correctly and consistently, latex condoms are “highly effective” at blocking the HIV virus, according to the CDC. They’re also good for blocking any other STI that’s transmitted …
By Emma McGowan

9 Fascinating Things We Learned About Sexual Health In 2017

Once on the margins of the scientific community, sex research has been coming into its own over the past few years. While Masters and Johnson had to keep their studies secret as recently as the 1960s, nowadays it’s common to see sex-related research …
By Emma McGowan

7 People Reveal The Habits That Were Making Their Anxiety Worse

I've always been a perfectionist, since I was little, and as an adult that's manifested in pretty serious anxiety spirals. I'll start thinking about something I did wrong (or something I could do wrong) and I'll get stuck on it. I'll loop and loop an…
By Emma McGowan

The Long-Term Effects Of Street Harassment Are Worse Than You Think

I was 24 the first time I was groped in public. A guy grabbed my breast and walked away before I could catch a glimpse of his face. The second time was on a bus, when a man standing behind me put his hand up my skirt and rubbed my vulva. I froze. I n…
By Emma McGowan

Difficulty Getting It Up Could Be One Of The First Signs Of An Underlying Condition

When Zachariah Reitano was 17, he wasn't able to get or maintain an erection. Like most teenage boys, this wasn’t something he’d had trouble with in the past. So when he wasn’t able to get or stay hard, he knew something was wrong. Luckily, Reitano's…
By Emma McGowan

7 Best Sexting Apps For Long Distance Relationships

Earlier this year, my boyfriend started a new job after years of working freelance. One day I was feeling kind of frisky, so I sent him a sexy photo via Facebook Messenger. That’s the app we usually use to chat and I’ve sent him photos there before, …
By Emma McGowan

7 Tips For Cuddling Better This Winter

As a native Vermonter, I’m well aware of the fact that there are a lot of things to hate about winter. There's less sun, it's colder outsider, it's harder to get exercise because you don’t like breathing hard when your boogers are freezing. You get t…
By Emma McGowan

7 Sex-Positive Organizations That Need Your Support This Holiday Season

The end of the year is traditionally a time to give to charity. It’s a time to think of those less fortunate than you are, as well as those who are doing good work that maybe doesn’t pull in the big bucks. This year, why not consider giving a few buc…
By Emma McGowan

7 Major Health Benefits Of Cuddling

I’m a cuddle monster. I’ve been a cuddle monster since I was very, very little. In the video of my first day of kindergarten, you can see me casually lean against my aunt until my entire body is against hers. There’s just something about getting all …
By Emma McGowan

10 Women Reveal Why They Switched To Menstrual Cups — And Why They'll Never Turn Back

Whatever your feelings are about periods, there’s no denying one thing: They’re messy. And the way we choose to deal with it differs from person to person. Some people prefer pads. Some go for tampons. Some are super into “period panties.” Some free …
By Emma McGowan

5 Common Things Survivors Of Sexual Assault Blame Themselves For, But Never Should

A good friend of mine was sexually assaulted recently and she turned to me for help figuring out what to do about it. I’m not going to go into the details of what happened, but I will tell you is that she had a reaction that so, so many assault survi…
By Emma McGowan

11 Life Upgrades To Make When You're Getting Over A Breakup

Breakups are hands down the worst. On an emotional level, when you’re heartbroken, you feel like you’re never going to be happy again. On a practical level, you might lose friends, furniture, or even your apartment. The turmoil after a breakup feels …
By Emma McGowan