Want to give her the best orgasm of her life? Then you’re going to need to enlist the help of more than just your penis: 37 percent of women say they need clitoral stimulation to orgasm during sex, a new study in the Journal of Sex & Marital Therapy found.
And while an additional 36 percent don’t actually need it to orgasm, they say adding it in makes their orgasms way better.
That’s what researchers from Indiana University and the Kinsey Institute—along with OMGYes.com, a research-backed site on what women like in bed— discovered after they surveyed 1,055 women across all age groups what they needed to reach peak sexual pleasure. Unlike previous studies on the topic, this one sought to delve deeper, by answering what makes an orgasm particularly, well, orgasmic, and exactly how women prefer their genitals to be touched and stimulated during sex to help them get there.
More than 3 out of every 4 women say that some of their orgasms felt better than others. The deciding factors that can turn a ho-hum orgasm into a memorable one? Seventy-eight percent of women say spending time to build arousal is key, 44 percent say not feeling rushed does it, and 39 percent list having their clitoris touched during sex. About 13 percent of women say masturbating during sex can crank up their orgasm, while 11 percent say anal stimulation will do it.
As for where they want to be touched? Sixty-seven percent say directly on the clitoris, 45 percent like alongside, above or below the clitoris, and 25 percent prefer you to occasionally brush her clitoris, but not to apply direct pressure to it.
So that’s the where, but how about the how? The two most commonly preferred styles of touch that were given the thumbs up by more than half the women surveyed were up and down touch—64 percent of women—and circular movements, at 52 percent of women. Nearly a third liked side to side touch, 21 percent liked pulsating touch, or rapidly pushing in one spot, and 16 percent enjoyed flicking. Only 8 percent said they liked squeezing or pinching, and just five percent endorsed pulling.
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There was a big variety in the pressure the women preferred, too. Thirty-four percent liked a medium pressure that moves their skin, 31 percent liked just being touched very lightly, and 25 percent liked light pressure that glides over their skin. Just 11 percent preferred the firm pressure that pushes deep into their skin.
As for putting it all together, the top four techniques preferred by the most women were a rhythmic motion, a motion that circles around the clitoris, switching between different motions, and switching between more and less intense touch.
Still, these findings shouldn’t be taken as the definitive playbook of what you must do in the bedroom—the variability seen in the women’s answers only prove that there’s no one-size-fits-all recommendation that will make every women peak. But it can give couples more direction or concrete ideas of ways to experiment in the bedroom to find what she likes best, the authors write.
So, like all things under the sheets, communication is key. Consider these findings a jumping off point for things you both can explore together to make sex even hotter.
This article originally appeared on Men's Health