If you've already read articles on the site like "15 Pretty Tripped Out Things You May Not Know About Penises" and "BDE: Please Let The 'It Needs To Be Huge' Myth Go", then you know that I have never shied away from writing about penises. Personally, I adore them. They've provided me with many fond memories over the years. And because I've experienced 14 different ones (oral sex and intercourse wise; I've seen a few more than that), I've come to realize—and accept—that just like each man comes with his own level of uniqueness, so does his penis. And since no two penises are exactly alike, each kind requires a different kind of, finessing, if you will.
That's what we're gonna touch on—no pun intended—today. 12 different things about penises that you may encounter and how to handle them—again no pun intended—so that you can get as much joy and pleasure out of them as possible. Take a deep breath. Exhale. Now dive in.
If gherkin is a name that you're familiar with but you can't exactly remember why, they're pickles. Some penises have earned this nickname because they are smaller than average (which means they are less than roughly five inches long whenever they are erect). Keeping in mind that your most intense nerve endings are within two inches of your vagina, a gherkin can still get the job done. The main thing to keep in mind is, for maximum penetration, positions like doggy style, cowgirl (you know, being on top), having your legs pushed behind you, or putting a pillow underneath you while you're on your back are gonna be your best.
Oh, and definitely avoid asking questions like, "Are you in yet?" or faking orgasms, thinking that it will help a man with a smaller than average's penis ego. He's been aware of his penis way longer than you have. He is not shocked by his size. No need to shame him or—on the other side of the spectrum—lie to him. The jig is up. Just have an open mind about what smaller penises are able to do and let him pleasantly surprise you.
Here's the tripped out thing about the actual eggplant—it's not a huge penis; it's one that tends to be shorter than average while having a significant amount of girth (which is actually, when it comes to having consistent orgasms, better than the opposite scenario, which we'll get to in a bit). Matter of fact, eggplants are hailed for being able to get the job done in ways that most penises cannot. As far as positions go, just about any one of 'em work. The main hack to keep in mind here is the use of extra lubrication can make your partner entering you feel much more comfortable, so can extending foreplay time. However, if you're a "the deeper, the better" kind of woman, sitting on the end of something (like a countertop) while he penetrates you or being on your stomach during sex can help make you climax a lot quicker.
3. Rocket Popsicle
Some penises are actually wider and thicker down at the bottom of them and then they get thinner down towards the head. Hence, the nickname "rocket popsicle" (some of y'all remember those, right?). In order to get the most out of this kind of member, sex where you are sitting upright is a good idea. That way, you can feel the base of his penis as much as possible.
Can you guess what a burrito is? It's basically someone who has a big penis—lots of length and a good amount of girth. How do you know exactly who qualifies? Well, believe it or not, if a man is over seven inches when he's erect, that's considered to be a pretty nice-size burrito. So, what has made us think that we need someone who is 9" or more. Porn, for the most part. That's another article for another time, though. As far as sex with a burrito goes, getting into sex positions that allow you to control how much or little you are penetrated is always smart. There's an article on the site that can help you out with this. If you read "5 Go-To Positions For When Your Partner Is Well-Endowed" and also make sure to keep some lube in tow—oh and you breathe deeply during initial penetration—you can handle it. Remember, babies come out of vaginas every day. You can handle it.
I'm assuming that a pencil penis is pretty self-explanatory, right? It's a thin straight one that is the same in width from top to bottom. While a lot of "pencils" are fairly long, the challenge is they tend to lack girth, and that can keep you from "feeling it" as much as you would like.
The hack here is for you to get into positions where you can keep your thighs closed as much as possible. Not only does it help to narrow your vaginal walls, doing this makes it easier for you to feel more friction during intercourse too. Doggy style can get this done, so can getting on your back as your partner is penetrating you while they're on their knees. When you're in this position, your feet can go on their chest with your thighs still being fairly close together. Spooning works well for pencil penises too.
Hammers are interesting. The reason why I say that is because they are basically the pencil with a bit of a twist—it has a rather large head. Since the initial penetration is the most stimulating and hammers can rub against those two-inch entry nerve endings that I've already mentioned, get into positions where your legs are able to open up as widely as possible. Missionary, cowgirl, reverse cowgirl, the face-off (where he's sitting up and you're straddling him while sitting up as well) and the seashell (where you're on your back with your legs are out to his sides) are all positions that can all give you maximum pleasure during entry as well as the act of intercourse itself.
Let me tell it, a perfect penis is one that is healthy and provides consistent pleasure. To me this means that virtually any of these can fall into that category. However, as far as popular standards go, a cucumber has earned the prize because it's a penis that's considered to not be too big or too small; it's one that's literally just right for most women. The awesome thing about that is you can try pretty much any position and be good to go. That said, if you're ready to do some more experimenting, She Knows published a feature entitled, "69 Sex Positions You Need to Put on Your Bucket List Immediately" that includes illustrations and everything. Have fun!
Something else that we need to factor in is if your partner has a curve to his penis or not. When it comes to a curve, if it's less than a thirty percent of one and it isn't painful for him, consider his curve to be completely normal (if it doesn't fit these criteria, he might have Peyronie's disease). That said, curved penises can be a blessing in disguise because they have the ability to rub you in all of the right places; specifically, your G-spot. The main thing to keep in mind, in this case, is what direction the curve goes in.
If his penis curves upwards when it's erect, the missionary position can get you off quickest. If it curves down, doggy style is wise. What about if it curves to the right or left? Hmm. Try having sex while spooning. Just make sure to keep the sides in mind. Meaning, that if his penis curves to the left, get on your right side; if it curves to the right, get on your left side. You might be surprised by how great the sex feels, just by following this simple hack.
You know what's interesting? What I've discovered is, a lot of the women who frown at uncircumcised penises tend to be the ones who have never even seen one in real life, let alone been with a man who is "uncut". Here's the deal, though—it's actually reported that men who are a "turtleneck" can actually make women climax easier and quicker, thanks to that little bit of extra skin that they've got. They also tend to have more stamina too. So, if you've just discovered that your partner is uncircumcised, I'd release the stigma that it's problematic on any level, if I were you. You just might be in for the ride of your life. Literally.
Oh, and as far as oral sex, don't be offended if he would prefer to push his foreskin back himself. While an erect uncircumcised penis looks pretty much like a circumcised one, some men are sensitive about their foreskin and that's just fine. Oh, and don't be "scared" of it when it comes to giving head either. The extra skin can actually make performing fellatio more comfortable due to its extra bit of cushion that can feel pretty nice during the act.
What if your partner has a super veiny penis—one that, due to all of the semi lumps 'n bumps, it irritates your vagina more than you'd prefer? First, let me just say that veiny penises are pretty much genetic, nothing to be afraid of, and actually something to be somewhat grateful for because it's those veins that help your man to get and maintain his erection. Keeping all of this in mind, if you'd prefer a little less friction during intercourse, opt for some textured condoms; that can help to reduce the friction and make the sensation less, well, irritating.
11. Lava Lamp
Some women hate fellatio (check out "Sooo...What If You HATE Oral?"). Yet even if you don't, something that can be a bit, well, much is if you happen to have a partner who pre-cums a lot (I personally call those lava lamps). Unless you are a huge semen connoisseur, the taste and amount can catch you off guard, cause you to gag, or even make you want to stop altogether.
A trick that can help to keep things flowing smoothly is to switch back and forth from oral stimulation to manual stimulation, whenever you notice that some extra fluid is headed your way. You can even have a little cinnamon oil (you might want to mix it with a carrier oil like almond if the taste is too strong for you) close by so that you can put a little on your hands to mask the taste. The warmth of the oil will feel really great to him and the sweetness of it will help to make the taste of semen more…palatable.
12. Different Hues of Penile Skin
I don't see myself ever—and I do mean, ever—being with a man who isn't Black. Not that other ethnicities aren't beautiful…I'm just unapologetically Team Black Love. Besides, in my porn-watching days, a lot of white penises used to make me feel very uncomfortable. I used to call them "angry penises" because they always looked so red.
One day, I looked up why penises come in the colors that they do. It's because sex hormones actually play a role in regulating melanocyte cells which are cells that are responsible for the amount of pigment that's in various parts of the body. Since testosterone levels play a direct role in how light or dark a man's genitalia is, if you happen to notice that your partner's penis is much darker than the rest of his body, it's probably because his testosterone levels are on the high side. Oh, and as far as the red—or even purple shades—down there, that's typically due to the blood that has rushed down to the genitalia in order to make the erection happen in the first place. The lighter someone is, the easier it is to see it.
Oh, I could go on and on, believe you me. I'll save that for another time. For now, I hope this Reader's Digest introduction to penises and what to (sexually) do with them has provided you with some clarity and perhaps, even a little bit of comfort. Because all penises are awesome. When your partner knows what he's doing—and when you know what to do in return. Feel me? Sis, I know that you do.
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Different puzzle pieces are creating bigger pictures these days. 2024 will mark a milestone on a few different levels, including the release of my third book next June (yay!).
I am also a Professional Certified Coach. My main mission for attaining that particular goal is to use my formal credentials to help people navigate through the sometimes tumultuous waters, both on and offline, when it comes to information about marriage, sex and relationships that is oftentimes misinformation (because "coach" is a word that gets thrown around a lot, oftentimes quite poorly).
I am also still super devoted to helping to bring life into this world as a doula, marriage life coaching will always be my first love (next to writing, of course), a platform that advocates for good Black men is currently in the works and my keystrokes continue to be devoted to HEALTHY over HAPPY in the areas of holistic intimacy, spiritual evolution, purpose manifestation and self-love...because maturity teaches that it's impossible to be happy all of the time when it comes to reaching goals yet healthy is a choice that can be made on a daily basis (amen?).
If you have any PERSONAL QUESTIONS (please do not contact me with any story pitches; that is an *editorial* need), feel free to reach out at email@example.com. A sistah will certainly do what she can. ;)
This article is in partnership with Sensodyne.
Our teeth are connected to so many things - our nutrition, our confidence, and our overall mood. We often take for granted how important healthy teeth are, until issues like tooth sensitivity or gum recession come to remind us. Like most things related to our bodies, prevention is the best medicine. Here are five things you can do immediately to improve your oral hygiene, prevent tooth sensitivity, and avoid dental issues down the road.
1) Go Easy On the Rough Brushing: Brushing your teeth is and always will be priority number one in the oral hygiene department. No surprises there! However, there is such a thing as applying too much pressure when brushing…and that can lead to problems over time. Use a toothbrush with soft bristles and brush in smooth, circular motions. It may seem counterintuitive, but a gentle approach to brushing is the most effective way to clean those pearly whites without wearing away enamel and exposing sensitive areas of the teeth.
2) Use A Desensitizing Toothpaste: As everyone knows, mouth pain can be highly uncomfortable; but tooth sensitivity is a whole different beast. Hot weather favorites like ice cream and popsicles have the ability to trigger tooth sensitivity, which might make you want to stay away from icy foods altogether. But as always, prevention is the best medicine here. Switching to a toothpaste like Sensodyne’s Sensitivity & Gum toothpaste specifically designed for sensitive teeth will help build a protective layer over sensitive areas of the tooth. Over time, those sharp sensations that occur with extremely cold foods will subside, and you’ll be back to treating yourself to your icy faves like this one!
3) Floss, Rinse, Brush. (And In That Order!): Have you ever heard the saying, “It’s not what you do, but how you do it”? Well, the same thing applies to taking care of your teeth. Even if you are flossing and brushing religiously, you could be missing out on some of the benefits simply because you aren’t doing so in the right order. Flossing is best to do before brushing because it removes food particles and plaque from places your toothbrush can’t reach. After a proper flossing sesh, it is important to rinse out your mouth with water after. Finally, you can whip out your toothbrush and get to brushing. Though many of us commonly rinse with water after brushing to remove excess toothpaste, it may not be the best thing for our teeth. That’s because fluoride, the active ingredient in toothpaste that protects your enamel, works best when it gets to sit on the teeth and continue working its magic. Rinsing with water after brushing doesn’t let the toothpaste go to work like it really can. Changing up your order may take some getting used to, but over time, you’ll see the difference.
4) Stay Hydrated: Upping your water supply is a no-fail way to level up your health overall, and your teeth are no exception to this rule. Drinking water not only helps maintain a healthy pH balance in your mouth, but it also washes away residue and acids that can cause enamel erosion. It also helps you steer clear of dry mouth, which is a gateway to bad breath. And who needs that?
5) Show Your Gums Some Love: When it comes to improving your smile, you may be laser-focused on getting your teeth whiter, straighter, and overall healthier. Rightfully so, as these are all attributes of a megawatt smile; but you certainly don’t want to leave gum health out of the equation. If you neglect your gums, you’ll start to notice the effects of plaque buildup, which can irritate the gums and cause gingivitis, the earliest stage of gum disease. Seeing blood while brushing and flossing is a tell-tale sign that your gums are suffering. You may also experience gum recession — a condition where the gum tissue surrounding your teeth pulls back, exposing more of your tooth. Brushing at least twice a day with a gum-protecting toothpaste like Sensodyne Sensitivity and Gum, coupled with regular dentist visits, will keep your gums shining as bright as those pearly whites.
Many have wondered if one time is ever enough to see Queen Bey. Some argue yes. However, many of us on the opposite end of the spectrum, including myself, would disagree. Beyoncé's "Renaissance World Tour" is a universal yet varying experience for everyone who attends. In the words of Oprah Winfrey, the concert is "transcendent." For millennials, we have over two decades of her catalog that has served as the soundtrack for many of our lives and painted a personal portrait of our most coveted thoughts. Her music provides mental clarity and self-expression by serving as a universal language that has united fans from all walks of life through community, fashion, self-acceptance, and healing.
With a multi-layered approach to her artistry, just as she did on that winter day in December 2013 with the infamous digital drop of her self-titled album, she changed the game again on February 1, 2023, when she announced her world tour in support of Renaissance, her seventh studio album. Her cultural impact set the internet ablaze, with everyone trying to gather their coins, barter for presale codes, and figure out which cities to attend. The group chats were lit, and the Beyhive was stressed trying to get their hands on tickets.
Photo courtesy of Dontaira Terrell
Unfortunately, I was in that number. As the concert dates passed by and the one in my city drawing near all roads led to disappointment. With time ticking on the day of the Miami show and less than two hours to spare, my wallet bit the bullet, and I purchased three last-minute tickets, costing roughly $700.00 a piece (including fees) for me, my 9-year-old and 16-year-old nieces in Section 121 at the Hard Rock Stadium. With 10 minutes before showtime, we eagerly awaited the Queen to take the stage. A sea of metallic fringes, cowboy hats, disco fans, and western boots were in full effect and filled the entire stadium.
As the lights dimmed, a flood of emotions instantly overtook my body. It continued with each note she belted, along with nearly 50,000 roaring fans. The reverberating sound of the music through the stadium transported me from one era of my life to the next. As a teen girl in her bedroom daydreaming about her first love to blossoming into an unapologetic Black woman who is still on a road of self-discovery while learning to lean into the power anthem of "You won't break my soul." For over two hours, and with each set, I felt joy, love, peace, and a commanderie with fellow concertgoers. It was therapeutic as I danced like no one was watching and sang as if I were alone in my bathroom mirror.
There were no bars held, and I realized at that moment, "Nobody can judge me but me." The "Renaissance World Tour" proved to be so vast, and my Black girl joy was re-invigorated. It was magnetic and liberating, and I had to attend again, but this time, I needed to be up close and personal; I needed to be on the floor. In the days that passed, I watched more social media clips in different cities and asked myself if I would really splurge again to attend another Renaissance show.
Photo courtesy of Dontaira Terrell
After all, this would be my thirteenth time (maybe more because I lost count) seeing Beyoncé live, whether she was on tour with Destiny's Child, as a solo artist, or doing a live appearance. I contemplated for a while, but it worked itself out on its own. I was gifted two tickets and the next thing I knew, I was off to LA to attend another Renaissance show with floor seats at SoFi Stadium during Beyonce's 42nd birthday weekend! This time, things were different: no kids were allowed. It was adults only this go round.
Although the energy at the Miami and Los Angeles shows was empowering, infectious, and a celebration of life, happiness, and identity, they each provided their own unique experience. However, both concerts were what I needed for my well-being, leaving me with sore feet from dancing the night away, on vocal rest for the next few days from screaming at the top of my lungs, and on an indefinite high on life.
My introduction and love for Beyoncé began in 1996, while my older sister lived in Houston, TX, right before Bey hit the scene in 1998 with "No, No, No" as a budding R&B member. Her evolution twenty-seven years later as an international superstar and into womanhood has been an incredible journey to witness. As Mrs. Carter reminds each of us in the audience every night before the curtain closes, "I want you to remember this moment, where you're standing, who you came with, and take it with you. I hope you feel inspired."
I truly felt inspired, so thank you, Queen Bey. You awakened my inner child, and I will definitely remember these moments and take them with me.
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Feature image by Kevin Mazur/WireImage for Parkwood