This article was medically fact-checked by Consultant Obstetrician and Gynaecologist Dr. Shree Datta.
Ah orgasms. The glorious rise and fall of the beautiful hormonal cascade that follows sexual arousal. The knee-shaking, earth-quaking, leg twitching after-effects of a beautiful session in the sack – or wherever you choose to get it on. That peak feeling of human ecstasy and connection that feels almost transcendent at times.
Now, what if you drag that feeling on, backing up as you approach the “finish line”, and reapproaching it again and again. That my dear is called the art of edging.
What is Edging?
Mastering edging can take some self-control and practice, but over time, you may find your orgasms becoming increasingly stronger and more intense.
Edging is slowing down or backing off a little as you get close to orgasming, then coming back to that point again and again before eventually going over the edge. Edging can be done no matter what sort of reproductive organs you have, although it may be easier for people with vaginas.
Edging can be done whether you’re having sex with someone else or masturbating.
This method treats sex (again by yourself or with someone else), as a beautiful process or ritual that you can take your time with. The blissful buildup that accumulates inside through edging allows you to feel more sensations as they ripple out through your body.
The general idea behind edging for people with vaginas is that this buildup creates stronger orgasms. While this may not be true for everyone, there’s nothing wrong with experimenting and finding new ways to explore and experience your body and pleasure.
How to Do It
Like anything having to do with sexuality, edging can look different for different people.
It may be easier to practice edging by yourself, before incorporating the technique with a partner. If you are edging with a partner, you can try doing it together by approaching orgasm and falling back in tandem with one another. This involves a lot of communication, both verbally and non-verbally. It’s helpful to chat about doing this before things get hot and heavy.
For now, these tips are for you to utilize when masturbating, however they can totally be done with a partner(s) as well!
If this is new to you, it can help to start with what’s familiar. How do you usually reach orgasm?
- Start by arousing yourself in whatever manner is normal for you, whether that’s taking a bath, self-massage, watching porn, or anything else. Taking this time to ground down into your body, and become aware of sensations makes it easier to have control over your orgasms.
- Once you’re in the zone, start to stimulate yourself however you normally would. This could be with your hand, a vibrator, or some other sort of toy.
- Keep going, letting arousal build until you reach a plateau where you can easily go over the edge and orgasm.
- At this point, stop or slow down whatever you’re doing. This can be done mentally, or by ceasing stimulation.
- Take a few moments to recollect yourself by breathing into your belly, pelvis, and vulva. You can even take a second to explore what sorts of changes your vulva has undergone throughout stimulation, like increased wetness, engorgement, and vaginal dilation.
- When you’re ready, begin to stimulate yourself until you reach plateau again.
- You can repeat these last steps as many times as possible before fully reaching orgasm. After a few times, you may find it difficult or impossible to stop from coming. This sometimes allows people to experience a full-body orgasm that seems to take over from their head to their toes.
This can look different for everyone, you may reach a plateau and back up only once before you find yourself unable to control going over the edge. For others, they’re able to move back and forth from this state, or stay in a suspended period of the plateau for a while, before fully reaching orgasm. No one way is better than the other. This is your body, your sex life, and your space to explore.
Once you get more used to edging, you can incorporate it into other sexual techniques like vaginal penetration, anal play, and whatever else gets you off.
As you start to gain more mindfulness and control over when and how you reach orgasm, your confidence will probably grow. This increased confidence can ripple out to other areas of your life, but especially in the case of having sex with other people.
Considering that only about 18% of women can cum from penetrative sex alone, it can be incredibly helpful to expand your sexual toolbelt, and build your confidence in the process. The more secure you feel about your ability to reach orgasm, the easier it gets in the presence of a partner. Trust us, there’s nothing sexier than a person that knows just how to get to their tipping point, and communicate that with their partner.
Facts checked by:
Dr. Shree Datta
Dr. Shree Datta is a Consultant Obstetrician and Gynaecologist in London, specialising in women’s health including all menstrual problems such as fibroids and endometriosis. Dr. Shree is a keen advocate for patient choice, having written numerous articles and books to promote patient and clinician information. Her vision resonates with INTIMINA, with the common goals of demystifying periods and delivering the best possible care to her patients
Natasha (she/they) is a full spectrum doula, reproductive health content creator, and sexual wellness consultant. Her work focuses on deconstructing the shame, stigma, and barriers people carry around birth, sex, and beyond, to help people navigate through their lives with more pleasure, softness, and sensuality. You can connect with Natasha on IG @spectrumoflovedoula.