Blow Job

By | June 5, 2021

Despite its name, a blow job has literally nothing to do with pursing your lips together and blowing air on anything. (More on why it’s deceivingly named this later.)

But for those unfamiliar with the term, a blow job—also known as “going down on someone,” “fellatio,” or “a BJ”—is a form of oral sex that happens when someone puts their partner’s penis in their mouth and proceeds to suck and lick it for the penis owner’s pleasure.

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It doesn’t just have to be on a penis though. You can also perform a blow job on anything phallic like, say, a dildo, vibrator, or other sex toy, says sexologist Marla Renee Stewart, a expert for Lovers sexual wellness brand. And in addition to using your mouth and tongue, you can also use your hand to maximize the experience—like a simultaneous hand job.

Now that you understand its definition, if you’re looking for blow job tips, we’ve got you. Blow job positions? Got that too. Genius blow job hacks to make giving even easier? You guessed it. Oh, and also real people’s go-to blow job tricks too.

But if you’d like to dive deeper into the blow job, let’s go.

What is a blow job?

Like explained earlier, a blow job is an oral sex position that involves using your mouth, tongue, and spit to suck on your partner’s penis—without your teeth.

And while a blow job is mostly known as being a part of foreplay, aka something you may engage in before penetrative sex, it doesn’t have to be. Just like any other sexual act, a blow job can be the main course or an appetizer. You can even stop mid-penetrative sex for a blow job.

The equivalent of a “blow job” for those who have vulvas would be called cunnilingus, aka a form of oral sex that happens when someone uses their mouth and tongue to pleasure a vulva owner’s clitoris.

blow job sex position

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Why is it called a blow job?

While oral sex has been around forever, the actual origin of the term “blow job” is debated, explains sex and relationship expert Carmel Jones, coach at The Big Fling. Mostly in part because the act of giving a “blow” job actually doesn’t require blowing—it’s more about sucking and licking.

“Some people say [the term ‘blow job’] stemmed from the Victorian-era term ‘below-job,’” says Jones, who notes that while that explanation makes sense, she personally thinks it goes deeper than that.

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“From a female perspective,” explains Jones, “I think it began as a derogatory remark.” Jones explains that the term “blowsy” refers to a woman who is unkept and untidy or a woman with a puffy, red face. Add in the fact that the term was used to describe prostitutes in the 17th century, and you’ve got an easy jump to a misogynistic slang term.

Despite the blow job’s popularity in pop culture and as one of the most recognizable name-brand sex acts, sex shaming has always been a thing, and it was often considered taboo and (incorrectly) “dirty” up until recently, says Jones.

While today, we know that consensual oral sex is okay, fun, ladylike, and cool no matter how you swing it, Jones adds, it’s not a leap to think of the term as having some shame-y roots.

Jones adds that she believes the connotation of a blow job as a “less than ladylike job a woman would perform on a man” has shifted since then, and it’s more used as just a way to describe penis-focused oral sex. “As we’ve come to accept women (and any gender, for that matter) in sexual roles that involve fellatio, the word has just become a common way to describe sucking on a penis,” she adds.

Related terms:

Deep-throating

Facial

Pearl Necklace

Hand Job

Thigh Job

Teabagging

Cunnilingus

How to give a blow job:

Sex educator and founder of the Guide to Wicked Sex Jessica Drake recommends starting with your hands rather than going right for his penis with your mouth. “Incorporate a lot of different things all at one time. It’s not all about sucking the head of his penis. It’s more about worshipping the entire area. Run your hands up and down his thighs, pet his penis, do some manipulation with your hand, and squeeze it a bit and feel it as the blood flow starts to get going,” she says.

If he hasn’t ejaculated after all that “worshipping,” you can be creative with your mouth, but “err on the side of caution” with how much suction you apply, says Drake.

Switch techniques—and hence, sensations—frequently so things don’t get boring and the excitement can build. You can also use dirty talk to elicit feedback. Drake says men have told her that the three most important things to take into consideration when giving a blow job are:

  1. No teeth (ow)
  2. Lots of spit or edible lubricant
  3. Enthusiasm
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    If you’re into what you’re doing, your partner will be too. Not loving the idea of a penis in your mouth? Definitely feel free to do something instead.

    Feeling like you can’t get the hang of it? Don’t worry. Practice makes perfect, says Stewart. “Practicing your BJ skills is going to be your best bet when giving a good one. Take classes and practice on a dildo or cucumber when you have extra time to get used to the experience,” she says.

    A note on condoms: A CDC report from 2012 shows that young adults might not feel condoms during oral sex are necessary, given that “adolescents perceive fewer health-related risks for oral sex compared with vaginal intercourse.” Unfortunately, there are still plenty of health risks to giving blow jobs and you can still get STIs. So always talk to your partner about their sexual healthy and history before chowing down on their family jewels.

    A note on foreskin: If the man is uncircumcised and has foreskin, don’t pull it back too far or it can hurt. “The rumor is that if a guy is uncircumcised, the head of the penis is much more sensitive, but I haven’t always found that to be the case,” says Drake.

    What are some blowjob positions and variations?

    While the blow job position is most often depicted as the giver being on their knees while their partner is standing up, there are so many other variations you can try if you find that position to be uncomfortable.

    For one, the penis owner can be laying down flat on a bed or couch while the giver hovers over them on their knees or by laying down also.

    blow job sex position

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    The penis owner can also sit on the edge of a bed or couch with their feet on the floor, the giver in between their legs on their knees.

    blow job sex position

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    Another option you can try is the classic 69 position where the giver is on top of the penis owner—or you can try it with the penis owner on top.

    blow job sex position

    @LUCYMACARONI

      So like I said, lots of variation. For any position that requires you to be on your knees though, Stewart recommends you use a pillow for extra cushioning.

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      Should you spit or swallow during a blowjob?

      If you decide to take a blow job to completion (aka ejaculation), that age-old question will likely arise in your brain: Should I spit or swallow? And there’s really no right answer, it’s whatever you want and makes you feel the most comfortable.

      “I think that swallowing is something that adult movies have definitely made to be the expectation, but I think it’s important to get permission,” says Drake. “If men are going to come, they should give their partner a heads-up, so to speak. If you’re going to try it, do it all in one gulp and see how that is for you.” And if you want to spit, that’s totally fine too.

      Just so we’re clear, though: If you have a partner who is uncool with your choice of spitting or swallowing, they’re not someone you should continue giving head to. Like, ever.

      Any extra blow job tips or advice?

      Aside from knowing the basics on how to give a blow job, you can also enhance the sexual act as you become more familiar with the motion.

      Stewart recommends using eye contact, talking dirty to your partner during the act—you can say things like “How do you like that?” and “I love it when I get to suck your dick”—and using your other hand to play with their testicles, perineum, or anus. You can also use your nails to simultaneously stroke their chest, nipples, thighs, etc.

      Basically, there are a bunch of ways to give a blow job, and so long as you don’t use your teeth and everything is consensual, there’s no such thing as a bad one.

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