Sex doesn’t have to involve penetration of any body part. By definition, sex is an activity that involves physical intimacy between two or more individuals and is usually used among humans solely for physical or emotional pleasure.
This being said, sex without penetration isn’t less “real” or “good.” For example, for most women, external clitoral stimulation is the only way to have an orgasm. We’re not saying that orgasm is necessarily important when it comes to sex, but there’s definitely a lot of fun in it.
So, for those who are new to the idea of non-penetrative sex, here are a few experiments you can try to explore the territory.
Discover erogenous zones
Genitals are not the only place that gives you incredible sensations during sex. Try experimenting with different types of touch and pressure in such sensitive areas as inner thighs, lips, neck, inner wrist, fingertips, ears, etc. Different people enjoy being touched in different places. You just need to pay attention to your partner’s requests and reactions and take your time to find all the right spots.
Try nipple play
The first thing to know about nipple play is that some people love it and can even achieve orgasm through nipple stimulation only, and some absolutely hate it. This is why you need to start gently and see if it works for your partner. You can begin with lite touch and kisses and then slowly progress to more aggressive stimulation such as bites, pinches, ice cubes, sex toys, and even nipple clamps. Trace around the areola before moving onto the nipple. It will take some patience, but it’ll be worth it.
Enjoy external anal play
Anal play is also something you need to start slow with. Even if your partner is scared of anal penetration, they can enjoy external stimulation. Take a slow approach, and start with massaging, kissing, and licking your partner’s lower back, thighs, hips. Your goal is to build the right amount of anticipation before coming into contact with the anus directly.
You’d also want to explore the perineum area, as it has a lot of nerve endings. The perineum is a part between your partner’s genitals and anus. The perineum responds well to moisture, pressure, and temperature, so you can try different approaches to give your partner the most enjoyable sensation possible.
Topher Taylor from Clonezone sex shop shares his experience, “The perineum graduates from soft, to firm and back – which gives you a plump area to rub, tug and massage. I find that stimulation using your tongue and your knuckles works well.”
Try dry humping
Dry humping can feel really great and help build up your desire. You can experiment with rubbing yourself on your partner’s leg, hand, or pelvic region. You can challenge one another to provoke pleasure through fabric or do it with no clothes on. Keep in mind that STIs can be transmitted through fluid exchange or skin-to-skin contact as well as through penetration, so you need to stay safe during dry humping.
One of the perks of dry humping is that you can enjoy it solo as well. You just need to find something nice to rub against (such as a pillow, armrest, or something more adventurous). Just like with masturbation, dry humping can allow you enough stimulation to orgasm.
Don’t underestimate a hot making out session
Most people feel like making out is a boring part before the actual fun starts. However, it’s a great sensual experience if you do it the right way. Kissing takes practice, as there are many approaches and techniques to try. If you’re an experienced kisser, you know that it’s not all about your lips. The real fun starts when you run your fingers through your partner’s hair, softly nibble on their ear, lightly touch their chin, bite their bottom lip, wrap your hands around their waist, etc. Develop your own style of kissing, and your making-out sessions will be an unforgettable experience (in a good way, hopefully).
Explore massaging techniques
There are not enough words to describe the magic power of a relaxing massage after a long day at work. Besides, it’s a great foreplay technique that helps you build up intimacy with your partner. You need to be creative to make your massage a deeply sensual experience. Choose the right time and place, turn on some soft relaxing music, light a few candles, and stock up with massage oil. As for massaging techniques, the possibilities are limitless. Apart from concentrating on the stomach, arms, and the back, make sure you cover the less common areas, such as ears, back of the knees, the soles of the feet, lower back, nape of the neck, etc.
Use non-penetrative sex toys
There are lots of fun sex toys that don’t require penetration! Sometimes trying out a new sex toy can help you discover new levels of pleasure and add a spark to your relationship.
If you have a vulva, you might be interested in trying out some new exciting technologies for clitoral stimulation, such as Satisfyer Pro 2 and the Womanizer. These sex toys rely on localized air pulsation above the clitoris.
If you have a penis, you can try out Tenga eggs. They are soft, stretchy, squishy, and textured masturbators that will help your partner give you an unforgettable hand job.
If you have a vibrator, you can incorporate it into a sensual massage of any body part. No penetration is needed! If you don’t like vibrating toys, you can also try nipple clamps, collars, impact play toys, or lube with special ingredients.
Practice tantric sex
Tantra teaches you to become more in tune with your body. You will start paying more attention to what your body wants and needs to receive pleasure during sex practices and intensify your orgasm. It can strengthen and deepen emotional, spiritual, and sexual bonds.
During the practice, you receive sensations from any stimulation (massage, oral sex, etc.) as well as no touching at all through simple, synchronized breathing.
Learn more about Kunyaza
Kunyaza is a traditional sexual technique used in central Africa that has been practiced for hundreds of years between hetero couples.
Dr. Kate Lister, owner of the Whores of Yore sexual history hub, explains:
“During kunyaza, the man rhythmically and firmly strikes the clitoral glands with his erect penis. As the woman becomes more aroused and the vulva starts to swell, he rubs his penis from the top to the bottom of the vulva, then left to right, and then in a zigzagging motion—always returning to strike the clitoris after each rotation. Finally, as the woman is brought close to orgasm, he simultaneously stimulates the whole vulvar area using long strokes…but never penetrating.”
Spanking, bondage, role play, power dynamics – there are limitless ideas out there to try.
You can suggest your partner stand in front of the mirror while you reach around to stimulate their genitals. Make sure to whisper something dirty in their ear. You can also suggest they masturbate while you watch.
You'll crave for more!
Another idea to explore is bondage. You can start with something subtle like wrapping a scarf around their wrists, tieing them to a chair, and going down on them.
You can also try out role play with a simple boss and secretary or doctor and patient scenario. It can be a harmless way to live out a fantasy and get kinky. The only rule here is to discuss your limits and choose a safe word with your partner before beginning. It’s all about forming a deeper connection with your partner and being excited about exploring each other’s sexuality.