The Clitoris - 10 Facts

Man Woman Bed

This week, we revealed the things that every woman, and indeed man, should know about the clitoris…

1: Her clitoris is the equivalent of his penis – when a baby’s conceived it has the same genital tissue, but while in a boy it develops into a penis, in a girl it develops into a clitoris. The clitoris has a glans, a foreskin and a tiny shaft – just like his!

2: The clitoris is the only human organ designed purely for pleasure, and no other reason. (It may sometimes feel as if it’s also there for her to pee from, but in fact urine comes from her urethra, a few millimetres away.)

3: The average clitoris is a fifth of an inch long and just over a tenth of an inch wide. But there's a great deal more clitoral tissue hidden inside her body; the size of that can be about four inches - the size of a guy’s un-erect penis. Women who have given birth tend to have larger clitorises – the longest ever measured was 12"!

4: There are dozens of names for the clitoris: rosebud, cherry pit, love button, joy buzzer, door bell, bald man in a boat. In latter-day Turkey, small clits were called sesame seeds, medium sized ones were called lentils, and big ones were called chickpeas.

5: Because her clit is like his penis, in order to climax she almost always needs some sort of clitoral stimulation. Some women get this because the way their clit is placed means that intercourse hits the spot "from the inside". But most women need external touch.

6: The clitoris can be just as tender as his glans, so go gently, slowly and use lots of lube. Treat it as if it were a tiny penis, experimenting with back-and-forth, up-and-down, round-and-round strokes, using finger, tongue or a vibrator;  if she's very sensitive, use the vibe through a towel or handkerchief or touch around rather than on the clit.

7: For extra sensation, she may want to use a clitoral pump to increase blood flow and increase skin tension - available at most good sex toy stores and websites. Note, though, that - whatever the adverts claim - like the equivalent for his penis, such pumps won't increase clit size permanently!

8: Try the 'V' technique. Use two fingers in a V shape and slide them down either side of her clit with fingertips towards her vagina, then slide towards and away. This moves the clitoral hood to and fro which gets her going in the same way as easing his foreskin back and forth turns him on.

9: Good intercourse positions for climaxing with clit stimulation are her on top (she can reach down) and rear entry (he or she can reach down). If you want to get a good effect  intercourse alone, your best bet is CAT or Coital Alignment, where he rests his weight on her in the missionary position and moves up and down so his pubic bone is giving friction to her clit.

10: A clitoral orgasm involves between 3-15 contractions and can last from 10-30 seconds  - though the fact that women also have pelvic contractions may mean it seems longer, and some women can have a series of 'multiple' clitoral orgasms. Even an average clitoral orgasm lasts longer than even the best male orgasm!