Vaginal sex

Trying vaginal sex for the first time may seem scary, here’s how to make it pleasurable and fun
What is vaginal sex?

There are so many different ways to have sex, and exploring what you do and don’t like sexually is a constant, ongoing process. Vaginal sex, or vaginal intercourse, is the type of sex that involves a penis going into a vagina. If this is something you want to try, but are unsure how to do it, we have some basic pointers. 

Consent is sexy

The first and most important stage of vaginal – or any other kind – of sex, is that both you and your partner consent to everything that you’re doing. At Fumble, we believe this should always involve, a big, enthusiastic YES, which you should get before you start any kind of Fumbling, and keep on checking for while you’re having sex.

Sometimes consent can seem more complicated than a simple ‘yes’ or ‘no‘, so it’s really important to keep that in mind. And never forget that at any point, either before or during sex, you can always change your mind and stop.

Focus on foreplay

Not only is foreplay a lot of fun, but it’s also an important part of making you both aroused. And unless the vagina is fully aroused and wet, vaginal sex can be both difficult to achieve, and a pretty uncomfortable sensation. So before you go diving straight in, take some time to explore what feels good together. You don’t need to rush straight to penetrative sex.

For a lot of women or people with vulvas, arousal has no direct link to how wet they feel. They might feel super turned on, but their body won’t necessarily show it. Regardless of whether you’re wet or not, lube is your friend. There’s a huge range of lubricants to choose from, and there’s no shame in using them. They make sex more pleasurable, so give them a shot. 

How do I have vaginal sex?

Once you’re both aroused, it’s a good idea to put a condom on the penis, to prevent unwanted pregnancy and protect you both against STIs. And do this before the penis goes anywhere near the vagina, as pre-cum or pre-ejaculate contains sperm, so there’s a small chance you could get an STI or become pregnant from pre-cum.


If you want to use lube, put some near the entrance of the vagina. Make sure the lube is water-based if you’re using condoms, as oil-based lubes can’t be used with latex condoms. Then when you’re ready, gently open (or ‘spread’) the labia and insert the head of the penis into the vagina. Take it slowly at first – there’s nothing worse than pushing too hard too fast. Then move at a pace that’s comfortable for both of you. And remember to communicate! If it’s painful or uncomfortable, tell your partner, and slow things down. 

Switch it up

There are loads of different positions for having vaginal sex. Some positions give easier access to the clitoris during sex, and others allow for a greater depth of penetration. If you’re having vaginal sex for the first time you may find the missionary position (where one of you is on top of the other), is the easiest to get to grips with, but as you get more comfortable with sex figuring out what works for you can be a lot of fun.

Winding down

When you decide to stop having sex – which can be when one or both of you have cum or whenever – gently remove the penis from the vagina. If you’re using condoms, hold the condom at the base of the penis while you take it out to make sure no cheeky sperm leaks out. Then tie the condom in a knot, wrap it in tissue and throw it away. It’s also a good idea for both of you to go for a wee after having sex, to avoid contracting painful urinary infections such as cystitis.

Always remember that good sex is a learning process. No one is great at sex when they first start having it. And even people who have been happily shagging around for years have the occasional hilarious and awkward moment. So try not to worry about ‘getting it wrong’, but enjoy exploring and learning!

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Page Last Reviewed 6 December 2021