“Sex is a part of nature. I go along with nature.”  -Marilyn Monroe

Oral sex is, at once, one of the most desirable sexual experiences and the one that still carries enough discomfort to still call it taboo in some circles. There was a time when you could get arrested for it. Still, in the vast sea of sexuality, developing a healthy connection and building skill to oral ways of loving have a power and passion unique in the world. Many young people are initiated into sexuality through getting and receiving oral sex as early as middle school. This is in part because many teenagers consider oral sex “safe sex” and not the real thing. A recent survey of over 12,000 teens aged 15-17 reported that over a third of both male and female respondents had reported both giving and receiving oral sex. By the age of 18-20 the percentages jump to two thirds. Interestingly, both the men and women reported higher percentages of receiving oral sex than giving it.  

And yet, for all the oral sex being practiced, the ignorance factor both about the skill base, which makes it more enjoyable to both give and get, as well as the increasing risks about unprotected oral sex is not keeping up. Pornography is a poor substitute for real education in general but probably more true when it comes to oral sex. For many, the textures, fluids and raw vulnerability of the act make it hard to get beyond the question: “How do you have oral sex and not gag?” which impacts youth and adults alike. So here are a few basic tips on how to expand your skill, safety and comfort level with this deeply intimate practice.

1. It’s real.

Give up the idea that oral sex is some lame substitute or, more importantly, inherently  safer than intercourse. The truth is that all forms of oral sex are not only deeply pleasurable as recognized by the much higher incidence of orgasm for women in oral  sex over penetration but also just as deeply vulnerable. Not only is the mouth to  genital exchange of fluids inherently risky, but the act itself is one of deep reverence or better left alone.

2. Safety First

The rise of many STDs is now without question associated with unprotected oral sex. In addition, there is strong evidence that the increase of throat and mouth cancers is also associated with fluid exchanges between mouth and genitals. Especially with new and unknown partners protect yourself the way you would for intercourse using barrier methods including condoms, dental dams, non-microwaveable saran wrap, or cut up latex gloves. Protecting yourself against disease is sexy and anyone who doesn’t get it is not worth your sexy.

3.   Add flavor and slip.

The textures and raw smell of genitals are enhanced by glide and scent immeasurably. I myself cannot even consider participating without good love products on hand and, will even admit, that it wasn’t something I was interested in doing until I started using sexual aids, which qualitatively transform the experience. Genital tissue, like most body parts are sexier as the hand glides over them, and aphrodisiac scents open up pathways to the libido that allow fantasy life to step forward into what might otherwise be an awkward moment.

4. Developing a style.

While pressure and strokes are deeply personal preferences, most women prefer a slow, gentle technique. Increasing pressure and intensity in oral sex is perhaps the most intimate conversation two people can have without words. As with any kiss, developing your own personal art and style involves understanding and coordinating the variety of sensations that tongues and lips offer. Paying attention to the sensations and techniques that send you over the edge and allowing fantasy to inform you, replacing your inhibitions.