Oral Sex
September 19, 2019

Giving Head

Great oral sex requires great communication. Here’s how to become an expert at going down.
Written by
Louise Bourchier, MPH
Published on
September 19, 2019
Updated on
What's changed?
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Upping your bedroom communication skills will improve your oral sex game and help you give head like a boss. But what do you need to communicate about and how? It’s difficult to talk when your mouth is busy! To make it easier, here are some suggestions for how to communicate before, during, and after oral action.

Before Going Down

This is a great time to ask what your partner likes. Some people will be happy to tell you their preferred techniques, which is great for you because then it’s easier to give them what they want! But some people might not know how to describe what they want, or they might be shy about sharing; be patient and ready to explore as you go along.

Ask your partner what they like and don’t like before you go down.

It seems obvious, but before going down on someone, it’s important to check if they actually want oral sex, and if they’re ready for it. If they’re not into it, or not ready, it’s not going to be much fun for either of you. Find out by trying these simple questions:

  • “Would you like oral?”
  • “Are you ready for me to go down on you?”
  • “Your _____ looks so good. Can I use my mouth on you?”

While You’re Going Down

Yes, communication is the key to giving good oral, but you also don’t want to get distracted with long conversations that take you out of the moment. Let’s face it, you can’t use your tongue to lick and chat at the same time, so mid-head talk should be brief! The trick is to take short pauses for yes/no questions.

You can’t use your tongue to lick and chat at the same time, so talk should be brief! The trick is to take short pauses for yes/no questions.

Asking: “What kind of tongue movements do you prefer?” Is a great question before you go down, but during oral you want to keep it simpler. Instead ask:

  • “Do these circles feel good?”
  • “Do you like the up and down motions?”
  • “Is that sucking the right pressure?”

Body language and eye contact are fantastic communication tools, too. Is your partner making sounds of enjoyment? Are they pushing their genitals away from your mouth? This could mean they want less pressure. Are they rocking their pelvis with a quickening rhythm? They probably want you to speed up. Pay attention to these signs.

If your partner gives you instructions try to accept them gracefully rather than seeing them as criticism. No one can read minds, and you shouldn’t be expected to magically guess what your partner wants. After they’ve told you what they like, just adjust your technique and focus on enjoying giving them pleasure. Remember that you too are a participant! Oral isn’t only about giving, it should be enjoyable for you as well. Accepting constructive feedback is important, but it’s not ok for your partner to demand things you don’t feel comfortable with, or to put you down if a technique isn’t working.

After Going Down

The afterglow is a great time to reflect on the experience. Start by focusing on what went well. For example:

  • “Wow, that was really fun. Which bits felt best for you?”
  • “You seemed really into it when I used my hand as well as my mouth. Did you like that?”
  • “Did you like the way I turned my face to the side? Was that a good angle for you?”

If there are things you’d prefer to change next time make sure you reflect on the positives first; it’s much easier for a person to accept constructive criticism when they feel safe and appreciated, rather than picked on. It’s also good to offer a solution for next time, rather than just making a criticism. Here are some suggestions for how you can approach these sometimes challenging conversations:

  • “I found it hard to know if I was getting the speed right. Next time could you please say ‘faster’ or ‘slower’ when you want me to adjust the speed? That would be really helpful.”
  • “Did you want me to stop when you orgasmed? Or keep going? I wasn’t sure. Can you squeeze my hand next time and then I’ll know you’re ready for me to stop?”
  • “My jaw got pretty sore near the end. I didn’t want to stop because you were so into it, but how can we change things up next time so it’s more comfortable for me?”

Try these communication tips next time you’re giving oral. Your partner will see how attentive and curious you are as a lover, and how you prioritize their pleasure. By upgrading your communication skills you’ll be well on the way to giving oral like a boss!

Reviewed for Medical Accuracy

Louise Bourchier is a sex educator and sex researcher with 8 years experience in the field. She teaches about sexual health, sexual pleasure, and communication in relationships through workshops, live-streams, and with written content. Using a sex-positive approach, a dash of humour, and bag full of fun props, Louise’s style of sex education for adults is not what you got in high school! Since 2011 she has taught over a hundred workshops to a wide range of audiences, from university students, to refugees, to medical professionals, to adult store clientele. She has a Masters of Public Health, and is currently a PhD candidate.

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