Celebrate the self: National Masturbation Month

    Unlikely as it is that you needed an excuse, May is National Masturbation Month. Perhaps you’d prefer that I give you a moment to let the full effect of that fact sink in. Yes, the past month has given you every reason to spend some serious alone time to get better acquainted with … yourself. In honor of that, this column is dedicated to different ways of celebrating the self.

    Of course, it’s entirely possible that you’re either not interested in exploring sexuality or already confident in those abilities. But for anyone who is perhaps a bit curious as to tips and tricks for spicing things up or learning a little about different sex toy options, I encourage you to keep reading.

    Vibrators

    Don’t limit vibrator use to a specific area — it can be used like a massage tool on hips, thighs, bellies and necks, which can be especially useful during foreplay. Vibrators aren’t necessarily a fun-for-one tool either; they’re a great way to set the mood for an experimental evening. Take the time to explore different kinds of touch, finding out what’s pleasurable and arousing.

    There are plug-in vibrators and battery vibrators. The latter offers a number of advantages: They are inexpensive, portable and less intimidating for first-time users than the somewhat overwhelming plug-in variety. It’s important to note that as with almost all sex toys, vibrators are commonly sold as novelty items rather than long-term toys, and as such, their durability can be unpredictable.

    A precautionary word to the wise — if you’re experimenting with anal stimulation, don’t use a vibrator that doesn’t have a flared base, or you run the risk of “”losing”” the vibrator.

    Restraints

    Handcuffs, rope, etc. can add a lot to the bedroom, while only mildly bordering the kinky. Some sex shops manufacture special cotton fiber rope that doesn’t chafe like the cord you picked up at the hardware store. Similarly, padded handcuffs are available if authenticity isn’t a key priority.

    Like all sex toys, restraints aren’t really something you should spring on your partner at the last minute. Some people may not take to the idea of being tied up, and you want to make sure that both people are interested before busting out those handcuffs.

    Cock rings

    Cock rings are used to restrict blood flow out of the penis, creating a sensation of tightness and pressure. Although some men find that wearing a cock ring can make erections firmer and last longer, cock rings shouldn’t be used to correct erectile difficulties. They come in a number of versions and with different advantages. Single-strap adjustable cock rings are recommended for men trying them for the first time; they are affordable, easy to put on and easy to remove if the response is too intense. Stretch latex cock rings are also good for beginners, particularly for those men who are thinking about moving on to solid rings. Stretch latex rings can be worn two, three or even four at a time for increased pressure.

    Improvisation

    Without a doubt, the key to any romantic endeavor is being able to improvise; just as the worst thing you can do when things are heating up is to spoil the moment with too much hesitation or an awkward question.

    Trust is a huge part of this particular recommendation. Once you and your partner have established that you’re both comfortable with sexual exploration, then the relationship can be taken to a whole new level of intensity through a mutual interest in experimentation.

    It’s easy to dismiss sex toys as lewd or kinky, and obviously people have the right to be of that mindset. But it’s just as easy to miss out on heightened sexual experiences because of a lack of information on different available products or simply because the hype around sex toys was overly intimidating. So if you let National Masturbation Month slip by without paying proper homage, perhaps now is the time to try something different and ask your partner about experimentation. Who knows? You just might like it.

    Think Jessica doesn’t know what she’s talking about? Send any and all questions and comments to

    More to Discover
    Donate to The UCSD Guardian
    $200
    $500
    Contributed
    Our Goal

    Your donation will support the student journalists at University of California, San Diego. Your contribution will allow us to purchase equipment, keep printing our papers, and cover our annual website hosting costs.

    Donate to The UCSD Guardian
    $200
    $500
    Contributed
    Our Goal