Nothing, and we mean nothing, is quite as satisfying as watching a woman in all her low-moaning, back-arching, sheet-grabbing glory. But likewise, when that big O proves a little elusive, you might feel slightly askew, like your manhood is all of a sudden called into question. What, on Earth, could be going wrong?
“Men still really believe that intercourse is the primary way to satisfy a woman—that penis size, thrusting, and maintaining an erection are most important,” says Ian Kerner, Ph.D, a sex expert and author of She Comes First: The Thinking Man’s Guide to Pleasuring a Woman. “But there are a vast amount of nerve endings connected to the female orgasm, so a little knowledge of the female anatomy can go a long way.”
Sounds like it’s time to study up—and tweak some of your strategy—to bring her to a bone-chilling blastoff, huh? That’s exactly why Men’s Fitness talked to some of the best sex experts and orgasm researchers out there to unlock the secrets to her body and her brain, beginning with the basics that come into play well before the clothes come off. Read on, as this advice will surely blow your mind now—and lead to mind-blowing sex later.
1. Send a Subtle Text
Here’s the thing: Researchers now believe that emotional intimacy plays a sizeable role in a woman’s sexual response cycle, which means that you best back your brain up from that initial point of groping-and-kissing—and re-think your foreplay plan all together. In fact, to boost your bond and give her that feeling of connectivity she needs to get aroused, experts suggest starting with small gestures way before the big event. (Pro tip: Send her a simple breakfast-time text that says, “Hey babe, can’t wait for tonight”—and a few follow-ups throughout the day, too.)
You know how when you’re crazed, a good romp helps you blow off steam? While stress won’t inhibit a man’s arousal, a woman is a more complicated creature, sexually speaking. Pull her away for a pump-and-run, my friend—and your chances of getting her off aren’t so good. “If there are five roommates in the other room or she has 10 emails that need to get answered, it’s going to be hard for her to orgasm,” says Kerner. “For a woman to really get aroused, the parts of her brain associated with outside stress and anxiety need to deactivate.” So make it a point to get her in a relaxed environment, and remember to stoke that fire slowly. Most women require a full 15 to 20 minutes of sexual arousal and activity to reach orgasm with a partner. (Patience, son.)
Now that you know a woman’s body can take much longer than a man’s to heat up, you’ll understand that the female orgasm is all about sustaining her arousal. And one of the easiest ways to do that, according to Dr. Patti Britton, PhD, clinical sexologist and co-founder of SexCoachU.com, is a surprisingly G-rated return to the first-base basics, which will help her feel more connected to you as her excitement builds…and builds…and builds. “Keep going back to kissing, and make it an ongoing part of the sexual act—not just foreplay,” Britton says. “It sounds so mundane, but kissing is important to her—it send that bioelectric shock through her body—and it too often gets left out in today’s rushed world.”
When you’re in the midst of the act, you’re probably thinking a combination of “Yes! It’s happening!” and “Well done, bro! She’s hot.” But a woman’s mind, on the other hand, might be somewhere in between, “Oh no. Does my ass look huge?” and “I hope he doesn’t notice [insert insecurity here].” Since study after studyhas shown that even minor body image issues can inhibit her ability to enjoy sex, get aroused, and reach orgasm, do what you can—in the moment—to make her feel attractive and comfortable. You think she’s hot, right? So tell her…again and again. It all goes back to what Kerner already said: Relaxing her brain is key to relaxing—and arousing—her body.
5. Don’t Rush Downtown
“A lot of men approach oral sex as an act of foreplay,” says Kerner. “But direct clitoral stimulation might not feel good at the start of sex.” So spend at least five minutes kissing, caressing, and working the rest of her body first. And since so many women claim that receiving oral sex is the best way to consistently orgasm (not sure about your lady? just ask!) Kerner also suggests that you consider making it your game-time performance—and not just a warm-up drill.
6. Lube Up First
So we’ve already said to take it slow, with lots of foreplay. But what’s the exact game plan? Britton likes to teach her clients to treat it like a step-by-step process: Hands, then mouth, then penis, with one key ingredient thrown into the mix from the get-go. “A good, slippery, long-lasting lube is so important,” she says. “If your finger is dry and she’s not amply aroused, which she won’t be at this point, it can be painful—and one uncomfortable misstep is all it takes to shut her down.”
When Barry Komisaruk, PhD, a behavioral neuroscientist at Rutgers University and author of The Science of Orgasm, mapped women’s brains in a study, he found that stimulating the clitoris, vagina, cervix, and nipples all activated slightly different parts of the brain. That’s cool science, sure, but why should you care? It’s simple: By employing your penis and two hands to hit these hot spots all at once, that pleasure center in her head is going to light up like a Fourth of July fireworks display. “Women have said they can orgasm from each of these separately, but when you combine them, so many more neurons and nerve cells are responding,” says Komisaruk. “That means the resulting orgasm is going to be that much stronger and more enjoyable.”
8. Rotate Your Oral Approach
When you do eventually go down on her, Britton recommends this secret method: Lie horizontal (like from 3-9 o’clock), so that you’re still licking up and down—but your tongue is going across her clitoris. “In one study I conducted, 50% of women had more rapid and more intense orgasms from that positioning,” she says.
9. Try Doggy Style
Position is certainly a personal preference, says Komisaruk, but there’s some science that makes a case for foregoing good old missionary—and entering her from behind. “Pushing forward toward the front wall of the vagina stimulates a much more complex combination of the vaginal, clitoral, urethral, and prostate areas than in the other direction,” he says. And when it comes to intercourse in general, Britton adds this simple—but sage—advice that pays dividends: “Rock, don’t pound,” she says, “and she’ll love it.” (In fact, you might also want to encourage her get on top, which will increase clitoral stimulation—and allow her to control the speed and motion.)
10. Read Her—Then Hit it Home
Follow all of the advice we just gave you, and you should get her into what Kerner calls “the 90-second window”—that oh-so-crucial period where she’s this close to coming. The key, though, is recognizing it. For many women, reaching orgasm requires a sense of inward focus, so you won’t necessary hear moans or shouts. “Her eyes will close, you’ll sense muscular tension throughout the body, and—if engaging in manual or oral stimulation—you might feel entire pelvic floor tightening,” says Kerner. At this point, she’s almost there, and the best way to push her past the finish line is to apply pressure against the clitoris. So keep doing what you’re doing, but provide a point of solid resistance, says Kerner. Let her do the work until she comes—and then prepare for round two. (Yes, women can have multiple orgasms.)