Your clitoris has 8,000 nerve endings. That’s double the amount of nerve endings in a penis, according to the European Journal of Obstetrics & Gynecology and Reproductive Biology. Perhaps that’s why, for many vulva-owners, clitoral stimulation is key. If you love when your partner goes down on you or tend to focus on your clit when masturbating with your hands, you may be interested in figuring out how to use a clitoral stimulator like the Satisfyer, the Womanizer, or Dame’s Aer.
According to Megwyn White, certified clinical sexologist and director of education for Satisfyer, many people don’t just enjoy clitoral stimulation, they need it to orgasm. “Clit stimulators work with Air Pulse technology to indirectly stimulate the very sensitive and densely packed nerve endings of the clitoral glans,” White tells Bustle. “It uses pressure waves to stimulate blood flow and heighten awareness of the clitoris, which is also the key to pleasuring those with vulvas.”
Will I Like Clitoral Stimulators?
Using a clitoral stimulator may allow you to focus on your pleasure while exploring different intensities, White says. Unlike penetrative toys like dildos or G-spot vibrators, clitoral stimulators focus just on your clit. If penetrative toys seem like *a lot* or if you know you like the attention more on your clit, rather than internal sensation or a full feeling, White suggests checking out a clit toy.
“More intensity isn’t always better,” White says. “You may want to start out with a lower intensity and work with the breath to expand the journey.”
The best way to find out what sensations you like? Practice with different types of toys. “Pleasure is a personal experience and people should feel empowered to use products that maximize their pleasure,” she says.
What Clit Stimulator Should I Buy?
If you’re overwhelmed or a little sheepish about buying the right toy, you’re not alone. But being an informed buyer may relieve some of your embarrassment, White says. “Look at your lifestyles and determine what you need. That can then inform what you look for in a clitoris stimulator.”
If you’re shopping online, Tara Struyk co-founder and editor-in-chief of Kinkly, an online shop and sex resource, says to do your research first. “Find a brand that has an online presence, that has at least a few reviews by independent sex toy reviewers and that appears to care about quality and customers," Struyk previously told Bustle. "This will go a long way toward finding a toy that is actually designed for your pleasure."
Here are some questions to keep in mind when buying a clit stimulator, according to White:
- What is my budget? Clit stimulators can range from higher-end products like Womanizer from $79-219 and the LELO Sona at $118 to less expensive toys like the Satisfyer, which range from $10-60.
- Is it waterproof? Do you like masturbating in the shower? Do you want the option to use it in the tub? Are you going to stick to land?
- Is it discreet? Will you be leaving this out on your bed or nightstand or do you need something you can hide? Can it look like a sex toy or do you want it to be more undercover?
- How big is the head? Do you want focused, direct stimulation, from a smaller head? Do you like a more diffused, wider sensation from a larger head?
- How do you charge it? Do you want something with batteries or something rechargeable? How long does the charge last?
- How loud is it? Do you live with others and need something on the DL? Or can you crank it loud and proud?
- Is it remote-controlled or app-enabled? Do you want something with the latest technology or are you more old school?
- How versatile is it? How many settings and speeds? Is it easy to travel with? Will you be able to have partner sex with it?
Tips For Using A Clit Stimulator For The First Time
Like anything in sex, trying a clit stimulator means listening to your body and only doing what feels right for you. If something is too intense or just feeling off, take a breather.
“Try it out on the tip of your nose and perhaps experiment with your nipples and other sensitive spots,” she says. “Start on a lower intensity setting and work your way up to find what works best for your body.”
If you’re ready to try it out, White recommends making sure your toy is fully charged or battery-powered up, and finding a comfortable spot to sit or recline. To get in position, Dr. O’Reilly advises using a water-based lube, and spreading your labia slightly apart, exposing your clit. From there, place the stimulator head to cover your clit, making a light seal between your body and the toy. Once you find a sensation you like, ensure the toy is over your clit in a way that feels comfortable for you. Some toys you’ll need to hold over your clit, while others go on their own after you place them.
“The Womanizer Premium has an ‘Autopilot’ mode, which allows you to simply sit back and enjoy the ride as it offers a range of patterns and intensities to build anticipation and arousal,” Dr. O’Reilly says.
White adds that making noises like hums or moans can create more neural pathways of pleasure. “The voice is actually wired to your body’s pleasure via the parasympathetic nervous system,” she says. “Practicing prosodic sounds while you pleasure yourself will help to unlock the channel of expression that allows you to communicate your pleasure both outwardly and inwardly.”
If the sensation is too much, White suggests using a toy over your underwear or in the bath or shower. The sensation of the water can help you relax.
If you know you like a feeling of fullness with your clitoral stimulation, you can add your favorite internal vibe, G-spot toy, or dildo with your clit stimulator. “The added weight and fullness within the vaginal canal will help to activate a connection to the internal erectile tissues of the clitoris hidden within,” she says.
When using your clit stimulator with a partner, you can have them watch you use it, use it during mutual masturbation, or have it on your clit during penetrative sex.
How To Clean & Store Your Clit Stimulator
To keep the pleasure going, you’ll need to clean and store your toy correctly. Toys should be cleaned after every use and should be completely dried before they’re stored away.
“When cleaning non-porous silicone, use a mild soap with warm water or a damp soapy washcloth,” White says. “If there are removable parts, be sure to wash those separately to be sure to get into all nooks and crannies.”
Some clitoral stimulators may have a removable head. White says to remove the head before cleaning. Then store your toy in a cool, dry place, where it can’t get dusty, like a clean makeup bag or a drawer.
Megwyn White, certified clinical sexologist and director of education for Satisfyer
Tara Struyk co-founder and editor-in-chief of Kinkly
Dr. Jess O’Reilly, sexologist and global ambassador for Womanizer,