It may seem ‘old school’ but fingering, when done right, can be the actual best. We spoke to experts at Kinkly who are here to pass on their fingering wisdom.
When it comes to creating the persistent, rhythmic and often subtle stimulation required to really please a vulva – and deliver a mind-blowing orgasm to the person attached to it – fingers RULE.
Our fingers are dexterous, yet strong. Each soft, smooth fingertip is incredibly sensitive and receptive, allowing them to respond to a partner’s cues, change rhythms, and expertly play with labia, clitoris, vagina and all the lusciously sensitive skin between them. The hand is, inarguably, an amazing sexual tool. But you still need to know how to use it.
Here’s a stroke-by-stroke guide on how to make the vulva (or all the vulvas!) in your life very happy indeed.
1. Know your vulva
As you may already know, the clitoris is the centre of sexual pleasure for people with female anatomy. Period. It has about 8,000 nerve endings and, while it appears tiny from outside, it actually extends deep into the pelvic area and around the vagina. Even G-spot orgasms may occur as a result of stimulation of the back-side of the clitoris.
However, because the clitoris gets so much attention, we often forget about all the other luscious bits down there. And that’s a problem. Because you shouldn’t – listen closely, because this is very important – you should not stampede straight for it from the get-go. Actually, please don’t do that. If you do, you’re likely to shock those 8,000 super-sensitive nerve endings with your cold start, which tends to be very jarring, irritating and even painful.
So, first thing’s first: get to know your anatomy. The vulva includes the pubic mound, the inner labia and outer labia, the clitoris, the vaginal opening and, just beneath, the perineum. All of these areas are sensitive, sensual and responsive to touch. If you want to finger someone really, really well, you should definitely be working in a few, according to your partner’s preferences.
2. Use lube
The smoother and more slippery your subject, the longer, hotter and more satisfying your touch will be. Forget about the outdated idea that natural lubrication is enough. It can be affected by hydration, hormones, medication and stress. Why leave it up to chance? Just use lube, ok?
3. There’s a beginning, middle and end
Vulvas like stimulation that is sensual and slow. That’s because it takes at least 15 minutes of stimulation, on average, for a vulva-owner to reach orgasm. Fingering is not a wham, bam, thank you, ma’am kind of play. In fact, one good way of thinking about it is to imagine it as a great song or story, with a beginning, middle and end.
Remember how we said don’t jump straight to the clitoris? Don’t jump to the punch line, or start at the end of the story. The best stories slowly reel in your attention, introduce new characters and twists, get more intense, more interesting and then – only then, when you are helplessly riveted – do they reveal the ending.
Begin your play slowly, gently – gentler than you imagine, even – and gradually increase your speed and intensity as you move toward more sensitive terrain. What you’re doing is encouraging blood to flow to your partner’s genitals. This increases their arousal, all the while making them more receptive to intense stimulation and winding them ever closer to the edge of orgasm.
4. You gotta work your way in
Just as you need to build up the intensity, it’s also best to work your way from the outside in towards the clitoris. Think of the clitoris as a sort of bullseye. In this case, you want to start stroking and touching the outer edges of that target – the legs, thighs and lower abdomen. If your partner is liking what you are doing and responding well, you can move your caresses in closer, to the pubic mound, labia and perineum. You may even run a finger over the clitoris. But keep those touches light and teasing – you aren’t going there yet.
As your partner becomes more aroused, you can start zeroing in on the areas they respond to and enjoy the most, making your touches more rhythmic and consistent as you go, perhaps by rubbing a finger back and forth, or tracing a circle. Use your partner’s words and cues as your guide.
5. Listen to your partner
As your partner becomes more aroused by your touch, it’s important to really tune in to them, the directions they are giving and the sounds they are making. If you change up the rhythm or focus of your stimulation and things get quiet, back up. If your partner moans, writhes, their breathing gets louder or they tell you they like what you’re doing, you’re on the right track. As things heat up, get up close to your partner and let yourself get lost in their breathing, their movements, their pleasure. Listening to your partner and learning their body language is important to any kind of sex play, but it’s essential here. You have all the control; it’s you who decides whether your partner leaves satisfied. There is no sex tip in the world that’ll serve you better than your partner’s individual erotic cues, so listen up.
6. Use persistent, rhythmic stimulation
Sometimes, when our partners get excited, we do too. The way they are responding is so hot that we change something up, alter our rhythm in the hope of making them feel even better. But please don’t do that. When your partner is digging the thing you are doing, it’s time to keep doing that thing, not something else. Persistent, rhythmic stimulation is the key to a successful fingering. If the pace and pressure are working, keep doing it until your partner asks for more.
7. Penetration is optional
Although it’s best to wait until your partner is really warmed up, some people like a little penetration with their finger play. Be sure to ask your partner if it’s ok for you to go inside. Once you slip a finger or two in, there are a few things you can try.
Some people like a circular, swirling motion inside the vagina. This stirs up the sensitive area at the opening of the vagina.
Some people like G-spot stimulation (that spongy area of tissue two to three inches inside the front wall of the vagina that swells during arousal). There are a few G-spot techniques you can try here. The most common is a firm, “come-hither” motion using a finger or two against the front wall of the vagina.
You can try slipping your fingers in, caress the G-spot, then slipping them back out, up and over the clitoris. Repeat.
Use the rest of your hand to caress and massage the clitoris and labia while your fingers move rhythmically in and out.
As always, check in with your partner about what you are doing and how they are liking it. This should be a joint effort, with both of you working toward your partner’s ultimate pleasure.
8. The grand finale
As your partner moves toward orgasm you’ll hear their breathing get faster, their body tense up, and their noises and moans grow louder (or, for some, much softer). Your job here is to maintain focus. By now, you might be stimulating the clitoris directly and, if your partner is feeling really hot at his point, that stimulation can be pretty rough and intense. Just keep up the rhythm and touch that’s working for your partner, and check in with them to see what they need.
Sometimes, all it takes is just a little something extra. You could try kissing them hard, looking them deep in the eye or running your hands across their neck. You could also let them know just how hot their pleasure and arousal is making you. The best sex engages the body and mind fully. Helping your partner tune in to their body and stay present can help tip them over the edge.
9. Get to know your partner’s quirks
If you’ve seen a few vulvas, you probably know that they’re all quite different. As individuals, we are all wired a bit differently too, and have our own unique preferences. Sex is a skill, and part of that skill involves learning about your partner’s sexual quirks. For example, did you know that some people prefer stimulation on the right or left side of their clitoris? Do you know which side your partner prefers? You should. Small adaptations to your fingering technique over time are the things that can send your partner beyond just orgasm and right into orbit, to that place of total weightless, senseless bliss.
Sounds pretty hot, right? It is. And you hold the power to make that happen – in your fingers, your fingertips, your palms and your sensual, subtle, skillfully sexy hands.
Kinkly is a sex-positive website with the aim of facilitating education and conversation about sex and sexuality online. Kinkly’s mission is to provide a safe space for people to discover new and exciting things about sex, love and their bodies, as well as act as a gateway to top sex blogs and other sex-positive content from around the web.