A Sex Educator’s Guide To Sex With An Uncircumcised Penis
I’m with my first uncircumcised partner and feel a bit inexperienced. He’s sensitive to how I’d normally please him with my hands and mouth. Any advice?
The first time a friend asked me what the heck to do with an uncircumcised penis was our junior year of college (predating, albeit predicting, my work as a pleasure educator). Since then, this question reliably pops up every couple months or so. With that in mind, here’s everything you need to know about enjoying sexy times with an intact penis.
I like to say that there’s no normal when it comes to sex, only more or less common. That means every new penis (or vulva) you come into contact with will enjoy different sensations, pressures, types of play, etc. Will there be overlap? Of course. But not 100 percent of the time!
That means you get to explore, together! Yes “get to”—this can be fun instead of another item on your to-do list.
Not sure where to start?
Sex edutainer Dirty Lola recommends asking the person you’re with how they like to manipulate their foreskin. If you feel awkward bringing the topic up, here’s a handy guide for talking about sex (and other big scary topics).
As you go, sex educator John C Luna recommends “watch the [penis] owner’s expressions. You’ll know if you’re doing something bad and when you’re doing something good.”
Don’t judge or assume
It’s OK if you feel surprised, awkward, or even put off by your first intact penis—new things always carry with them some level of uncertainty. What’s not OK is to shame the penis haver’s body or foist those feelings onto them. Instead, talk through your emotions with a trusted friend, coach, educator, or therapist.
August McLaughlin, author of Girl Boner adds, “Don’t assume that your partner is super confident or insecure about their penis. Just as no two vulvas are identical, each penis is a unique, sexy part.”
Change your mindset
Being “explicitly erotic” is one of three key contexts needed for intimate, exciting, and fulfilling sex. What the brain categorizes as erotic is in no small part influenced by what society says is erotic. In the U.S., that includes circumcised penises.
The good news? You can change your erotic map. Start with Lola’s advice to “remove thoughts that the foreskin is ‘in the way..’” Aaand remember, “it’s part of the penis” anytime you find yourself judging or thinking otherwise.
You also can seek out sexual media like porn that shows intact penises. Seeing them helps to normalize what these penises look like. Seeing people enjoying sex with them makes them inherently erotic.
Of course, don’t forget about safety. Luna reminds us to make sure it’s clean. The foreskin is a little pouch after all! You may even want to incorporate some cleaning as part of your sensual play.
Intact penises typically don’t need as much lube or pressure
Because of their foreskin, intact penises produce their own natural moisture. That means you might not need to use as much lube during all sorts of sex. McLaughlin recommends applying any added lubricant gradually to keep things from getting overly slippery.
She goes on to say, “While more research is needed, penises with intact foreskin may be more sensitive than their circumcised counterparts—especially if you aren’t using condoms.” This makes sense since the head is tucked inside the foreskin instead of rubbing against underwear and clothing. It actually reminds me of heroines commenting in romance novels about the hero having “working man” hands despite being a duke and how their callused hands will feel…well, you get the idea.
How to play with an intact penis
Beyond the above recommendations, here are some additional tips to make sex with an intact penis more pleasurable for everyone!
“Start with light touch, avoiding intense friction, unless you know your partner enjoys it.” – August McLaughlin
“With a little lube and before the penis is fully erect, use the foreskin to slide up and down the shaft to stimulate the head of the penis without directly touching it. Think of that skin like a handy sleeve.” – Dr. Lanae St. John, sexologist and author
“Putting lube under the loose skin as well as on the outside is super enjoyable for some folks.” – Dirty Lola
“Treat it as a part of the [penis]. An extension of the frenulum. Be gentle. Massage it. Work with it. Play with it.” – John C Luna
Intact penises aren’t all that different from their circumcised counterparts
Finding freedom in pleasure isn’t about having a signature move, being able to read your partner’s mind, or having a bag of tricks and toys. It’s about exploration and intimacy.
As McLaughlin says, “If you approach sex with curiosity, aiming for mutual enjoyment and open communication, you really can’t go wrong.”