We asked 3,200 women to get vocal about oral sex. Here’s what they told us.
1. A blow job is a transaction
Don’t act so surprised. After all, almost everything in life in these times of financial uncertainty boils down to basic economics. So why should fellatio be any different? Instead the economics of a blow job is based on one of the most simple theories: The theory of reciprocity.
It’s a way of defining people’s informal exchange of goods and labour. It translates as: “If you go down on us, then we’re much more likely to return the favour.” And it’s the most effective way of getting the response you want. But we really should be clear on this point: Do not ask out loud.
2. Porn is porn. This is real life.
If you recognise this difference during fellatio, it will make us warm up to the activity more often. So, put aside what you’ve seen on the Internet. Consider the scenario you’re creating – one that involves your most prized possession resting between a set of teeth. In reality, this makes you pretty vulnerable, which we like. It puts us in control. It might not be right at the front of your mind. Or ours. But, deep down in both of our psyches, you know it – and we know it.
As for thrusting, it’s about simple logistics. On the whole, women prefer breathing to choking, and unwelcome movements make things complicated. Hair pulling is just depressing. It’s also liable to piss us off.
3. Cleanliness is a state of mind
Hygiene is right at the top of our blow job decision-making flow chart. If you’re fresh out of the shower, we’re going to be much more enthusiastic about the whole idea. And enthusiasm is exactly what you want.
Anything that doesn’t smell – or taste – like well-rinsed-off body wash can trigger a hasty retreat. So if you’ve just finished playing football, get cleaned up. We’ll wait. Just make sure that’s what you’re doing; we also know when you’ve gone for a drink with the boys instead.
And if you feel like your penis looks bigger when you’ve given the surroundings a careful cutting back, that’s fine. We’re happy that you’re happy. But from our perspective, the fact you’ve given the area some close attention is more of a welcome indicator that you take care of yourself down there in a broader sense.
4. It’s a power reversal of the best kind
A blow job is a power-reversal. That’s what gets us off while we’re seeing that you do.
But there is a subtle yet definite difference between liking the power of doing it and enjoying the power of the reaction that it causes. Watching your eyes widen as you realise what’s about to happen is incredible. Hearing and feeling your reactions is even better. In fact, it’s the best.
Because, once we’re down there, we are in charge. It’s obvious from how still you become that you know this. It’s up to us to decide exactly where you go – and we will decide how quickly or slowly we get you there, and what route we’re going to take. We enjoy doing it. In 2010, Canada’s University of Alberta asked us about our attitudes towards oral sex, and it found they were all associated with positive emotions. It is a journey we like taking for the precise reason that we have both hands on the wheel. Your best move is just to let us drive.
5. Head and sex are not exclusive
Many women will, on occasion, opt to make fellatio part of the whole, not the end in itself. This is usually the way we like things to go and it can only mean good things for you. Apparently you feel the same way, too: just one in 10 men prefer their orgasms to be delivered by mouth. Admittedly, our part in promoting this practice is partly out of sexual selfishness. The biology of the male human body means that many of you do not have the wherewithal to keep things going after you’re finished.
But because everything that precedes that moment turns us on, it seems like a bit of a shame to call an end to proceedings, when – for us – they are still very much proceeding.
6. It’s the end that we remember
There’s one other way you can put our minds at ease while we’ve got a hold of the reins. In this situation – so enhanced by the reversal of the power dynamic, and the electric shocks of how you move and respond to what we’re doing – there is one matter in which we are not at all in control. It’s very straightforward: Please give us a warning before you pass the point of no return.
This means we can slow things down if we want. Or take things in a different direction entirely. Or make the fireworks go off then and there in as spectacular a fashion as we can. If you take the power away from us in that moment, then the display won’t be one we enjoy nearly as much.
Finally, inevitably, there is the matter of where that big finish finishes. Most women have pretty strong opinions one way or another about this and some of us will change our minds completely according to our mood. Sorry about that. But it is true that a woman who spits can somehow feel less sexually enlightened that one who swallows. The former feels sort of impolite, and brings with it the potentially awkward issue of how you deal with the aftermath. You can see why it can be simpler to just go with the latter. But we’ll love it if you try not to judge us either way.
Oh, and, by the way, from a woman’s perspective, what feels like an explosion to you is a little less dramatic. It’s a bit like biting into a cherry tomato. Only with fewer pips.