What is edging?
Edging is a technique used during sex and masturbation to control orgasm. It involves stopping or slowing down just before orgasm to delay finishing, then bringing the intensity right back up to get back into it. The main benefit to edging is prolonging sex and strengthening orgasm, but there are endless reasons to practice edging (we’ll go into these later). Edging gets its name from the idea of bringing yourself to the edge of orgasm but not going over the line.
Edging alone during masturbation
Edging can be done alone during masturbation, especially when sex toys such as vibrators are involved. Edging alone provides an opportunity to intensify your orgasm or spice up your masturbation practice (we all know how easy it is to get stuck in the same old self-pleasure routine). Vibrators are a great way to explore edging because the pleasure settings allow you to easily adjust the intensity of stimulation which is exactly what edging is about.
Edging with a partner
Edging is also fantastic during partnered sex for a number of reasons. If a couple is wanting to spend more time on sex before the penis-owner finishes, or even if a person with a penis is struggling with premature ejaculation, edging is a great habit to get into. Edging is also a fun way to tease your partner by denying their orgasm!
What are the benefits of edging?
The benefits of edging are endless. You’d be surprised by the many different ways edging can transform your sex life!
Intensifies your orgasm
One of the main benefits of edging is the way it can intensify your orgasm and make it feel more powerful. When you practice edging over and over again in one sexual experience, you basically build up to a stronger and longer orgasm each time. This can increase sensation and help you feel your orgasm more. Edging is also a good way to explore multiple orgasms.
Builds excitement + arousal
Anticipation of an orgasm is almost the best part of the whole thing. Edging gives you a chance to extend the time spent being aroused before reaching orgasm and potentially ending the sexual experience (so more time spent in that juicy, fun, turned on state!). Building excitement and arousal is a key part of sexual wellbeing that we all need to pay a little more attention to.
Helps you achieve an orgasm
Edging during masturbation is an opportunity to learn how your body works and almost practice the process of having an orgasm. This is perfect for someone who hasn’t had an orgasm yet and doesn’t quite know how to get there. It’s also great for those who struggle to orgasm during partnered sex, as taking time to explore edging by yourself may lead to skills that can help you orgasm with a partner.
Increases the duration of pleasure
Naturally, by delaying the orgasm process, you’re delaying the end of the sexual experience. Orgasm doesn’t always signify the end of sex, but often that’s exactly when our bodies start to fatigue and our sexual brain starts to turn off. By edging, you’re allowing things to last longer and your body to keep going! The beauty of edging is that it gives you the power to control exactly when you want to orgasm.
Encourages mindfulness + body connection
The process of edging requires a dedicated mind to body connection. To engage in edging properly, you need to be able to know your body’s limits and recognise when you’re close to reaching orgasm. This requires you to be fully in touch with your body and tune out any external distractions in your mind. This makes edging a great way to practice mindfulness in the bedroom.
How to edge alone or with a partner
1. Stimulate until you’re about to orgasm
Since edging is an orgasm control technique, the first step is to masturbate, have sex, or get your body going. Edging comes in when you start to feel ready to orgasm. Signs you’re about to orgasm are different for everyone, but can typically include increased heart rate, more pleasurable sensation in the genitals, contractions in the pelvic and genital area, quickened breath, and sometimes involuntary noises.
2. Stop or switch stimulation to avoid orgasm
As soon as you feel those signs of orgasm coming on, it’s time to check in. Let your body get up to around 75% of the way to orgasm, then stop the sexy stuff or switch the type of stimulation. If you’re using a sex toy, this may mean turning it off or swapping the settings to something less intense (if you’re already on a steady vibration setting we recommend switching to one of the patterned modes). If you’re with a partner, you’ll need to ask them to slow the pace down or take the pressure off. The most important part is to stop or swap before it’s too late.
3. Start increasing stimulation to edge again
Before letting your body fully rest and come down from that pleasurable state, you gotta get things going again. The trick is to not let yourself get below 25% (and definitely avoid 0%!). This is why swapping the toy setting or sex act can be useful, as you’re not completely cutting your body off from sexual stimulation. After 10-30 seconds (the perfect time frame will be different for everyone), start to build the heat back up again!
4. Repeat until desired orgasm
Repeat the process of edging until you’re ready to orgasm and fully let go. For some people, edging once or twice is enough to feel amazing, whereas others like to set themselves a challenge and keep it going as much as they can! It’s up to you to tune in to your body and find out when you’re ready to go all the way and reach orgasm. To fully embody your orgasm, allow your body to relax while you release breath and maybe sound through your mouth.
How long should edging last?
Edging can last as long as you like! When you’re by yourself, you have all the time in the world to decide how long you want to spend on edging. When with a partner, you should try to check in with them to see whether they’re happy to continue to make sure they’re not tired or sexually checked out!
How do you know when to stop?
Knowing when to stop will take practice, and the perfect spot will be different for everyone. Whether you’re 60% on the way to orgasm, or right up at 90%, it’s up to you to decide the point that feels best to lower the intensity. Our hot tip is to tune into your breath and notice when it starts to quicken, because sometimes by the time your muscles start to contract or your heart rate starts to increase, it’s too late!
Are there any side effects to edging?
Edging requires knowing your body and how it works quite well because paying attention to the timing of your orgasm is important. You may find that you end up ruining a few orgasms before you get the hang of edging. This can happen if you stop or swap too late and end up with what feels like half an orgasm, or an orgasm that just didn’t quite hit the spot. The only way to get around this is to practice and commit to tuning in to your body!
Don’t worry penis-owners, there are no side effects of edging when it comes to ejaculation. More often than not, edging will only improve your control over ejaculation and enhance your experience of orgasm. If you’re worried about ‘blue balls’, this is your opportunity to connect with your body and learn how to deal with the fluctuation between arousal and orgasm.
Read more on Stimulation:
Not ready for edging and want to take it back to basics? We have in depth guides for masturbation on our VUSH Stimulation blog, where we answer the question what is masturbation, give you a guide on how to masturbate, and share the best masturbation positions and poses.