Nipples: A User's Guide

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Date_Night_Playlist_opener_revised-1 copyIllustrated by Ellie Andrews.
As Monica taught us on Friends way back in the late '90s, there are seven (seven!) erogenous zones that should be included in every sexual experience. While Monica’s exact zones are still a mystery, there’s one area of the body that is often neglected — and it should really be one of your first stops when trying to turn yourself or your partner on: the nipple.

Studies have shown that the sensation we get from stimulation of the nipples travels to the same part of the brain as sensations from stimulation of the vagina, clitoris, and cervix. This means nipples can add a whole new level to your experience between the sheets. In fact, some women can even have full orgasms from nipple stimulation alone.

The anatomy of the nipple is fairly simple. The area surrounding it is called the areola. And, those little bumps on the areola are called Montgomery glands; they produce oil that lubricates the area. The nipple itself has several tiny openings through which milk flows when breast-feeding.
Date_Night_Playlist_revisedIllustrated by Ellie Andrews.
Just like vaginas or penises, nipples range greatly in size, shape, and color. Nipples can be the size of a dime or a CD; they can be round and flat or more cylindrical in shape; and their color may be pink or close to black. Some women's nipples are always erect (thus, the infamous "THO" or "Titty Hard On" conundrum), whereas some nipples only protrude when stimulated by cold or touch. And, much like belly buttons, many women have innies instead of outies, meaning the nipple dips inward instead of protruding, even when stimulated.

To get the most out of your experiments in nipple stimulation, start by gently pinching to raise your partner’s nipple slightly. Then, with your finger or tongue, graze the nipple lightly in a circular motion. To intensify the sensation, try puckering your lips around the nipple and sucking.

For the more advanced, especially those who enjoy a little pain with their pleasure, try nipple clamps. These metal clamps, often connected by a chain, work by cutting off blood flow to the nipples for a sensation that’s both uncomfortable and, for some, very erotic. If this sounds like way too much, remember that some varieties allow the user to adjust the tightness, offering a less intense experience.

For nipple newbies, start small by adding a little extra teasing and licking into your repertoire. You and your partner may be surprised by the big pleasure these tiny body parts can provide.