Masturbation isn’t just a means to an end – it’s an opportunity to experience intimacy with yourself, to appreciate and enjoy your body and all its wonders. All bodies deserve to be appreciated, but not all bodies are given the same respect and recognition; in particular, folks with fat bodies are made to feel inadequate or ashamed of their shape, and it takes a lot of work to reject and unlearn that culturally-seeded toxicity. This work can take many forms, but something I’ve found incredibly useful in my own journey of acceptance and celebration has been incorporating self-love into my self-love
So how can you reconnect with your body and embrace your fat sexy self through masturbation? How can you go from turning off the lights even when you’re by yourself – as I often did (and still do on tough days) – to learning to appreciate the shapes beneath your wandering hands?
Get more physical with your body when you masturbate. Do you just reach down to get a handful of the good stuff and ignore the rest of your body when you get off? You’re missing out! Your body has many erogenous zones, both obvious – nipples, mouth, belly button – and off the beaten path, like the inside of your elbow. Glide your hands (or toys!) over your body to get to know its shape and how it likes to be touched. Trace a feather over the slopes of your stomach, use a small vibrator on the soft skin behind your knee, grip the inside of your thighs like a greedy lover. Even if all you do is tickle, you’re still waking your body up – and getting to know it as part of yourself.
You can start this physicality before you ever get to the main event. Indulge in some solo foreplay that doubles as self-care: take your time moisturizing to appreciate your skin, eat something decadent like chocolate-dipped strawberries while naked, take a long bath and luxuriate in the bubbles. Take the time to love your body.
You can change up your masturbation routine further by indulging in different positions. Do you always get off while sitting at your desk, or laying on your back in bed? Try getting on your hands and knees, or bending over a table, or laying on your back with your feet planted up on the wall. If your flexibility or mobility is limited, try some sex furniture for support with new positions! Not only can this make you feel more sexual and exposed, it will remind you of all the illicit things your body is capable of. Your shape does not preclude you from being sexually active and adventurous!
Use sex toys that actually accommodate your body. I run into this problem more often than most people because I’m a sex toy reviewer, but there are a lot of toys on the market that weren’t designed with bigger bodies in mind. Straining to get a pleasure product in place can be a serious turn-off – and worse, it can make you feel self-conscious during the vulnerability of masturbation. Your body is not an obstacle, and luckily there are sex toys out there that won’t make you feel like it is.
When it comes to vibrators – which anyone can enjoy – wands are an obvious choice, because their handles make them easier to position around your stomach. The Sola Sync has an especially appealing handle because it’s both wide and angled, helping you comfortably reach your junk; it also has a remote, which means you won’t have to stretch to reach any buttons. Handles are also a much-appreciated addition to air pulsation toys for clits, like the Satisfyer Pro Plus Vibration. And vibrators intended for g-spot use, like the Noje G Slim, can be instead used for external stimulation for an easier reach.
For penises specifically, there’s the Fun Factory Manta for fun with a handle. But there are also hands-free methods that bypass any stretch or strain. For example, there’s the Hot Octopus Pocket Pulse (which, like the Sync, has a remote) and the Cobra Libre II, vibrators that get you off without the need for manual stimulation. And to make traditional strokers easier to use, you can use the Liberator Top Dog Mount to hold them in position for thrusting instead of jerking off.
Like vibrators, the best dildos when you’re plus size are ones with handles. The Tantus Echo, for example, has a lengthy handle with some bend, so you can use it solo. Lengthy dildos like the Uberrime Night King can be treated like handled dildos, and self-thrusters like the Fun Factory Stronic G do most of the work for you. There are also wand attachments that can be used with your wand on or off, giving you a longer reach and the option of pairing your penetration with vibration.
Anal play for fat folks can be complicated, because our cheeks can be quite ample in size. For a more comfortable fit, look for butt plugs that have t-shaped bases instead of round ones, like the B-Vibe Snug Plug or the Avant Pride Beyond. For beads, toys with rings like the Blush Performance Anal Beads are often easier to remove because you have something thin but prominent to grasp. And for dildos, earlier tips still apply – just make sure the dildo of your choice has a flared base, just like any other toy you’d want to put in your butt!
Embrace sexual expression that includes your body and bodies like yours. All too often, people with bigger bodies try to be sexual despite their size, as opposed to acknowledging their body as an integral part of their sexual self. This is unfortunately reinforced by how little positive fat representation there is on our tv, in the porn we watch, and in our own conversations around sex; it’s hard to see yourself when experiences like yours are derided or straight-up invisible. But you can take matters into your own hands while we wait for the mainstream to catch up.
Going out of your way to enjoy porn featuring bodies like yours can set the mood and be an amazing confidence boost. Sites like The Crash Pad Series and Ciné Sinclaire feature plus sized performers without fanfare or othering. There’s plenty of erotic fiction starring fat characters, especially in self-published erotica. And if comics are your porn medium of choice, Filthy Figments has a plethora of comics featuring characters of size.
But sexiest mood-setter at your disposal is you. Taking naked selfies and swapping them with a sexting partner can help ease you into sexualizing your body, because you have control over the way you’re seen. (If you’re not ready for full nudity, you can get yourself something cute from size inclusive lingerie brands, of which there are dozens.) Incorporating your body into your sexting or dirty talk – and giving your partner(s) permission to do the same – can help ground you for later solo sessions. Phrases like “my/your soft thighs” or “my/your sexy tummy” are hot to say and hear.
And if you’re lacking the confidence to fully frame yourself as a sexual being, it can help to seek out sex education for fat folks. Books like Big Big Love by Hanne Black and Curvy Girl Sex by Elle Chase can give you practical advice and inspiration to live your best sex life. For video instruction, Kink Academy has several plus size educators that have covered topics such as Strap-On Sex for Bigger Bodies (taught by Sara Vibes and Indigo) and Expressing Yourself as a Plus Size Person (taught by Kelly Shibari.) And for moral support, social media sites like Twitter and Instagram are overflowing with other people on the same journey as you.
Just don’t forget, you’re not in this alone. We’re all learning – and relearning every day – to appreciate ourselves.