Sex on Friday

If You Haven't Had a Nipple Orgasm Yet, You're Missing Out

nipple orgasm
Jason Hoffman/Thrillist

My erogenous zones, like millions of people's, include my nipples. And like any special patch of so-labeled skin, stimulated nipples invoke wickedly erotic sensibilities. The exact feeling is hard to pin down: it's like floating, like fire, like flying, like high vibrations, like trees swaying in the breeze, like the perfect temperature of water, like the best bubble bath.

But orgasms are ultimately controlled by our brains. And if you're closed-minded, you're shattering the tools that make orgasms -- and, by extension, nipple orgasms -- possible. Believe me: you do not want to do that.

Having a nipple orgasm unfastened me. And they're not just for women, either. Studies show men can get off this way, too. It's not so far-fetched when you consider nipples have more than 800 nerve endings, release oxytocin when stimulated, and are the erogenous zones in closest proximity to the heart. Here's how to do it.

Repeat after me: I think I can

First, I had to tell myself I could. My boyfriend at the time claimed he could get me off by nipple stimulation alone. I laughed. But to his credit, he assured me it was true. "I speak from experience," he promised. "I've done it with girls before, a Brazilian chick taught me about it."

I'm not a huge fan of being told about my lovers' exploits with other people. BUT, he did say the aforementioned in Spanish which made the whole thing sound hot. After our conversation I thought it was indeed possible he'd done it before; but I hardly believed it would happen for me on the first try.

I was dead wrong.

Find a partner who digs boob play

This lover of mine, like others before him, was fully aware of what breast and nipple foreplay provoked in me: the moans; and, if lucky, the dirty talk. In short, I'd stumbled upon a partner who was into this sort of thing.

Now, some partners are into certain kinks and fetishes, and we've all run into our fair share. But some just aren't. And it's probably best to experience your first nipple orgasm with someone who's into breasts and nipples.

Be open to orgasmic chances

It was the middle of the week and I had just finished a night class at the university. I planned to head home and read for my 18th-century women's lit course. But that night, the universe -- and my boyfriend -- had other plans.

So, I had to choose to allow space for my orgasm to happen and let go of my inhibitions. Tensing up or forcing something to happen is counterproductive. Relax! Breathe in and out. Do a mantra. Increase that sexual energy you're harboring.

Make sure the mood is comfortable and inviting, and that it feels safe. For some of you, the twinge of taboo could be present. Nothing increases desire like doing something naughty.

Learn the nipple-O technique

Stimulating your partner's (or your own!) nipples wakes up the same nerve cortex activated by genital play. So similar to understanding the art of foreplay in sex, nipple play needs to be a slow build -- called "edging," which refers to playing around the edges of your target area so your partner is practically begging you for more.

For a nipple orgasm, you'll want to start by lightly touching the outside, underside, and top of the breast and areola (but not the nipple!). Gradually work your way toward the prize, paying attention to your partner's breath and response. Depending on how sensitive they are, you may need to vary how hard or lightly you squeeze, pinch, pull, or massage. Practicing on yourself is a great way to get a sense of what works and what doesn't.

When it's time for the main event, try some light (no nails!) pinching of the nipple to help it get hard. Once aroused, you'll be able to pinch, suck, and play a little harder -- erect nipples can tolerate more stimulation, which in turn produces more oxytocin. Mixing up pressure and how you're handling the breast and nipple will create waves of pleasure… hopefully leading to a memorable grand finale.

A little mindful meditation is great for orgasms

Be present in the moment so you can enjoy every second of what's happening. Listen to the sexy sounds coming out of you and your partner. Concentrate on your own breathing and try to simulate the breathing of a genital orgasm.

Think of your nipple as if it were your clitoris or penis. After all, the shape and tissue are quite similar. And the brain reacts to nipple and clitoral stimulation in the same way. Think of your nipples as extra clitorises. Seriously, it works. Try to bring that feeling from your nipple down below. Try to sync the two body parts.

When you feel the wave coming, don't fight it. Ride it! Ride it all the way until you crash.

The crashing will feel different from genital stimulation. You might feel more of an internal orgasm (contracting, flexing, and releasing of the entire region below). Some feel vibrations and others feel strong bursts. Whatever it is you feel, enjoy the hell out of it.

Memorize what worked

Since my first time, I have been able to do it with others… which tells me I've opened up some fabulous sex gate I hope never closes. Being able to climax from various points on my body makes me feel closer to the gods; almost goddess-like. What is enlightenment, if not the ability to orgasm from points of contact all over your body?

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Jacklyn Janeksela is a freelance writer at Thrillist who is also a poet, painter, and musician; she writes about art at Culture Designers and body image at Witty Bitches. See (and hear!) her art at Female Filet, art mugre, and The Velblouds.