(For People with Vulvas)
How would you describe experiencing an orgasm? Chances are, you’re going to use one of these words: amazing, intense, euphoric, exciting, toe-curling, mind-blowing, tingly, blissful..the list goes on.
One thing we can all agree on–granted that your playtime has been safe and comfortable–is that they feel good! Of course, pleasure can feel all types of good, even without necessarily making a trip to the O-zone (more on that later).
But for all of you babes with a vulva who are yearning to party at the peak for just a while longer, Aunt Sassy’s put together this guide to make your dreams cum true! Be sure to also check out the sassy goods to choose your pick of self care products to accompany you on your journey to climaxing more.
Beginning with the Basics
Before setting out on our multiorgasmic adventure, let’s do a quick refresher on the big O. While an orgasm is subjective and unique for each person, it can be described as an intensely pleasurable response that is experienced with the culmination of sensual stimulation.
The reward pathways in the brain are turned on and there is an increase in your bodily functions like circulation, heart rate, breath rate, brain activity, and muscular spasms. The orgasm is followed by a refractory period, which is when the body brings these bodily functions back to baseline.
It is widely thought that vulva havers have no refractory period and therefore are more likely to be able to experience multiple orgasms than penis havers. However, the reality is that everyone goes through a refractory period, which may vary from a few seconds to 24 hours, depending on factors like health, level of arousal, comfort, and type of sensation we’re playing with.
Multiple orgasms are orgasms that are experienced in succession. They can occur in two ways:
- Serial - Building up as a series of lesser intense orgasms leading to a powerful climax
- Sequential - With small gaps in between each orgasm, where arousal levels dip before returning to orgasmic levels
Identifying Types of Orgasms
To get down to getting off multiple times, it’s essential to know about all the ways that one can orgasm. Although orgasms tend to be categorized as clitoral orgasms, nipplegasms..etc, most researchers believe that we experience one orgasm that may be activated by different parts of the body, with each part awakening a specific sensation.
So while we may be able to point an orgasm to where it may be felt in the body, the response is actually an effect of various parts working together.
Some of the more popular ‘types’ of orgasms among people with vulvas are:
There are so many more sensations that you can get frisky with while trying to finish, including some that may not even require physical stimulation (O, O, O, it's magic)! So get discovering (and be sure to play safe by getting your hands on our intimate lubricant).
Looking at the Data
Female pleasure is a topic that remains largely ignored, which can explain the orgasm gap, the term used to describe the disparity of frequency of orgasm between cishet men and women.
Fortunately, Aunt Sassy’s working hard to bridge that gap and has adult products designed to win over every bit of your wonderland. Adding a vibe to your pleasure toolkit can also aid your quest–after all, research indicates that about 74% of cis women experience their first multiple orgasms during solo play.
Pam (she/they), a cis woman, who’s bisexual and works as an associate lawyer, elaborates on experiencing multiple O’s for the first time ever:
“I can vividly recall that night–it was at 2 a.m., and I was super horny. I grabbed my toy and lube and played around with my clit to sort of warm-up. Then I engaged in some penetration and tried edging for a while to tease myself a little bit. Soon, I had an orgasm (which was pretty intense), and I kept rubbing my clit. Two minutes later, I had another orgasm, a bit milder this time, and I legit couldn’t feel my clit for about three seconds. *laughs* I think the best part of my first experience is that I never planned anything, and it just happened, you know?”
The intensity of pleasure between the first orgasm and the successive ones varies from person to person. According to a study, 50% of women said their second orgasm produced more pleasure than their first, 25% experienced no change in pleasure, and 25% noted decreased pleasure after their first.
Those who reported increased pleasure tended to have multiples during partnered play, while those who reported no change or less pleasure generally had their multiples solo, possibly indicating that the first orgasms solo tend to be more intense than with partners (like for Pam).
Women who enjoy multiple O’s also report engaging in multiple forms of intimacy like kissing, cuddling, massages, intercourse, and being eaten out. This could explain why lesbian women are more likely to cum multiple times, as they tend to not center physical intimacy on penetration, as much as those in cishet relationships. Zoe (they/them), who’s 23, and a hand-poke tattoo artist, describes the difference between partnered and solo play:
“There’s a huge difference between the quality and quantity of orgasms. I’ve been lucky to have had good partners who have helped me get here, but ultimately I know my body the best. I know exactly what moves to make, what angles work, how much pressure, how many fingers, and how intense *chuckles*. It also changes with different partners and contexts.”
Getting Into it Yuh
Let’s put together everything you need to keep the multiorgasmic party going:
- Trying solo play for your first multiple orgasm. Discovering what gets your love juices squirting, maybe more comfortable to do by yourself. However, some people may prefer setting out on this journey with a partner that they trust. You do you boo.
- Getting your hands on a pleasure toy. Artika, an award-winning pleasure and menstrual health educator, who’s also the facilitator of one of our masterclasses, shares important insights on why toys can be especially valuable: “Pleasure toys can be your go-to when you don't want to put in as much physical effort. This also makes it great for people with disabilities and chronic pain. In some toys, there are options for different speeds and intensity levels–which can be done manually but can take more time and effort–easing the process of experiencing multiple orgasms.”
- Engaging in various forms of pleasure play in the bedroom. This could include sensation play, and tapping into blended orgasms–which are double the fun and occur with simultaneous stimulation of the clit and another erogenous zone like the G-spot, or the nipples. Artika, also suggests trying edging, which can intensify your orgasms and help you keep going longer.
- A sweetheart who makes you feel safe. When looking to accomplish multiple O's as a couple, communication is absolutely necessary. You need to be able to say when things are going right, when they're not, and when they're too much. T (she/her), a psychologist, and R (he/him), an educator, are both 24 and have been dating for 2 years. They talk about their experience of multiple orgasms during partnered play–R:“The first time T experienced multiple orgasms, I was just so turned on looking at her. At that moment, I wanted to make sure she felt as pleased as she possibly could. She asked me to not stop and keep going at the same pace, and I just followed her.” T: “Haha, I almost cried, I remember. He always makes sure I am comfortable and enjoying myself, whether that means him going down on me, or just us spooning. We also try to ensure that both of us feel like we, as a unit, are part of the experience."
- Taking the pressure off. Artika explains how one can cope with the pressure of trying to reach multiple orgasms: “It's good to know that it's a scientific fact that multiple orgasms are possible for folks with vulvas. But I feel like over the past few years, it has become over-glorified in pop culture. Two things that can help are solo play, which can be a safe space for people who are comfortable with it, and trying to not overthink about it by comparing yourself with other people and putting that tension on your body.” It's also vital to reiterate the truth that each person's pleasure trip looks different. Some people have longer refractory periods. Some people don't squirt. None of this has to minimize the joy you can experience.
Anorgasmia, which is the inability to reach orgasm, is an important concern that many people go through. Several factors could cause anorgasmia, including stress, issues with body image, certain medications, communication challenges in relationships, and even cultural beliefs. While anorgasmia can cause significant stress and there are ways to help improve one’s ability to climax, Artika makes an essential point:
“Anorgasmia is described in the medical community as a pathology, but pleasure is possible without orgasms as well. Whether it's one orgasm, multiple orgasms, or no orgasms, sex can still be pleasurable. One can always seek help for anorgasmia if it starts affecting their self-image and mental health.”
A treatment plan for anorgasmia may consist of learning solo-play techniques, mental health support to address personal and/or relationship challenges, lifestyle changes, and using assistive aids like sex toys.
So while Aunt Sassy always wishes the best of pleasure for you, do remember that she also wants you to own your pleasure! If you’re having wild times in the bedroom that may not include orgasms–whether one or many–it's all yours to claim, babe.
About the Author
Anna (she/they) is a queer, neurodivergent and disabled psychologist and writer. They have always been curious about pleasure and conversations around it (and wanted to found a condom company when they were 12, because of Global North misinformed panic that the climate crisis is a consequence of overpopulation–they’ve learnt better now). They wish to contribute to a world where everyone can enjoy access to pleasure, safely and shamelessly.