First and foremost, scissoring can be for everyone! It’s a position for all genders and genitals. However, it's widely known as a "lesbian sex move"—the position you’re bound to come across when you search for lesbian porn. And there’s quite a large divide in the queer community when it comes to scissoring—people either love it or hate it.
From the research we’ve done for Come Curious, our sex-positive YouTube channel, the idea of scissoring is considered by many queer women and people with vaginas to be a fulfilment of male fantasies that doesn’t have much practical use. “I would do it whenever my on/off ex girlfriend and I would hook up, and it was never planned—it just happened. It’s nice to do, and it was intimate,” says Rina Ellis, an adult performer. “I get asked to do it a lot when I perform in mainstream lesbian porn because it's more for the male gaze."
But, we believe that as long as it gives you and your partner pleasure, both physically and mentally, then there should be no judgment. And, just because some people don’t like it, that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t try it once (unless you’re really not into it!)
Reed is pansexual and thinks it makes no difference whether you’re straight or queer, you and your partner just need to work out if it works for you. Everyone's so different after all. Like any other sex act, scissoring is only hot if both people legitimately get off on it.
Now, if you’re ready, here’s how to do it.
Just to be clear
Scissoring can sometimes be confused with tribbing. Tribbing is rubbing your genitals on different parts of a body, like a leg or breast. Scissoring, though, is genital-to-genital contact. Both are extreeemely pleasurable, but we’re just talking about scissoring here.
Most people tell us you need to stretch before you embark on the scissor. Seriously... who stretches before sex?! Is there ever that much pre-planning? But they might be onto something. So, if you’re looking for a pain-free, no kick back session, why not throw in a quick warm up. Get those glutes, quads, and triceps ready!
Stubble can be a bitch too, so having a shaven haven or going au naturel might help avoid friction rash.
Oh and you might want to think about lube. Do you want a slippy sloppy session, or a ride with a little more friction? We highly recommend coconut oil if you’re not using any latex, silicone toys, dental dams or condoms (as oil-based products and lubes react badly with latex and silicone.) But if you are, a water-based lube would do the job just fine.
Getting into position
When it comes to getting into position, first you have to consider your body types, and everyone’s vulvas are in slightly different places. As we explain in our 'How to Scissor' YouTube tutorial, if your vulva is higher up on your pelvis, then a ‘sitting up scissor’ is more pleasurable. However, if your vulva is lower down, then the more classic ‘laying down opposite each other’ will make your fireworks fly.
Make sure you get comfy before you get jiggy! A bed or a soft carpet is always best, as it won't cause you any friction burn.
Once you’re finished with your warm up, get into a position where your genitals are touching.
Sit opposite each other
The act of scissoring is most often performed by sitting opposite one another, and interlacing your legs (one of your thighs will be below their thigh, and your other thigh above theirs). Once you're in position, you'll need to get so close your genitals are touching in a way that excites and stimulates the senses.
Either raise or lower your body to find what feels pleasurable, and is most comfortable for you and your partner. For vulva-on-vulva sex, it shouldn't have to be like you're both trying to find a clit in a haystack—your entire vulvas can be massaged together to create all kinds of enjoyable sensations.
Lying on your side
You can also have one partner lying on their side with one thigh held up, while the other straddles across their resting leg. As long as your legs are interlaced, this is still considered scissoring. You're not going to get it perfect the first time, especially with a new person. This is very much a "suck it and see" position—so move about a bit, try out different variations and see what works.
Using a strap-on
If you're wanting to use a strap-on in the scissoring position (whether penetrating the vagina or anus), just make sure the angle isn't strenuous and causing your partner any discomfort. And, do not be afraid to communicate if something doesn't feel right.
Ultimately it’s all about trying out different angles until you find what is right for you both.
Things to remember
Your sexual organs are delicate, so be gentle with your genitals. And make sure you find a speed and pressure that’s right for both partners.
Don’t feel like you need to reach your climax either. Scissoring can be enjoyable without an orgasm, and the pressure of getting the big payoff can be way too much for many people. So, try not to overthink things, just enjoy the way it feels! An orgasm shouldn’t have to be the end goal of every sexual experience.
Not to go mother-mode on you, but we just want to point out that you can still get STIs from scissoring. You’re mingling all your genital fluids, and have sexual and genital-to-genital contact, so they can be transmitted. Luckily, dental dams exist and are great for protection. But we recommend getting your sexual health tests done with your partner before engaging in sex (and regularly afterwards), so you don’t have anything to worry about.
Using sex toys
Doing the old ‘split in two’ doesn’t mean you can’t incorporate toys into the mix. We live by sex toys as they add a completely new orgasmic dimension to our play. If toys are your thing, then why not add a double-ended dildo for that deep penetration? You can also place a bullet vibrator, or high powered wand vibrator, between your legs if you think it’ll add to your pleasure.
At the end of the day, scissoring isn’t for everyone and if it doesn’t feel pleasurable for you, that’s okay! Don’t be afraid to be vocal about what you do and don’t like, and of course, it’s important to listen to what your partner wants too.
This article originally appeared on Cosmopolitan.com/uk. Minor edits have been made by the Cosmo.ph editors.