What Is Squirting?

What you need to know about female ejaculation

The term "squirting" is colloquially used to describe the fluid expelled by some people with vulvas during orgasm, but it is actually much more nuanced.

"Squirting" and "female ejaculation" are often used interchangeably, but there is some controversy over whether or not they are two distinct functions, with experts leaning towards the belief that they are.

A woman lays on a bed smiling with her head back.

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How Is Squirting Distinct From Female Ejaculation?

While the debate over terminology and whether or not squirting can be called ejaculation is ongoing, studies and experts have recognized some key differences between the two.,

Squirting
  • Fluid believed to come from the bladder and excreted by the urethra

  • Can involve the release of a larger volume of fluid (up to ten tablespoons)

  • Clear, watery fluid

  • Contains urea, creatinine, and uric acid, similar to diluted urine, sometimes with a small amount of prostatic-specific antigen (PSA)

Female Ejaculation
  • Fluid believed to come from the Skene’s gland, often referred to as the "female prostate," near the urethra

  • Tends to be a smaller volume of fluid (up to a tablespoon)

  • Viscous, whitish fluid

  • Contains high levels of prostatic acid phosphatase, prostatic specific antigen, glucose, and fructose, but low levels of urea and creatinine (often similar to male ejaculate without the sperm)

How Does Squirting Happen?

Whether or not everyone with a vulva can squirt and/or ejaculate is up for debate. While it is estimated that 10% to 50% of people with vulvas do ejaculate, some experts believe that every person with a vulva has the ability to ejaculate, while others believe it depends on a person's anatomy and not everyone can do it, no matter how hard they try.

Exactly what triggers ejaculation in people with vulvas is still unknown, but it is believed that it has to do with clitoral and G-spot stimulation.

From the outside, the clitoris looks like a small "nub" covered by a hood of skin, at the top of the vulva, above the urethra. Inside, the clitoris has two "legs" that run down each side of the vulva, giving it a horseshoe-like shape. Its only known purpose is to provide pleasure.

The G-spot is harder to define. Experts aren't sure if it is an actual anatomical "part" or simply a sensitive area inside the vagina.

To find the G-spot, you or your partner can insert a finger a few inches into the vagina, palm up, and make a "come here" curling motion, or use a sex toy that is meant to stimulate that area. For some people it is pleasurable, for others it doesn't feel like anything special.

One study suggests that the G-spot may be a stimulation of the root of the clitoris through the vagina instead of part of the vagina itself.

Ejaculation is associated with orgasm, especially when brought on by stimulation of the clitoris and G-spot, but some people with vulvas report experiencing ejaculation from sexual arousal and stimulation without orgasm.

In short, there are theories, but no one is sure what causes ejaculation in people with vulvas, and studies are conflicting and inconclusive.

Where there is a consensus is that it is normal for people with vulvas to ejaculate and it is normal if they don't. Neither is considered better or worse and not ejaculating is not an indication of unsatisfactory sex.

What Does Squirting Feel Like?

Like any sexual sensation, squirting and ejaculation feel different from person to person. For some, it feels like an orgasm. Others feel an orgasm that differs from a clitoral orgasm, deeper in the body, producing a "bearing down" sensation.

Some people with vulvas feel an urge to pee before they ejaculate, which sometimes causes them to hold back instead of riding out the sensation.

Some describe it as a sensation similar to urinating, others don't feel it at all while it's happening.

Most "squirters" find it pleasurable, no matter the exact details.

Safe Squirting

If you are engaging in squirting/ejaculating with a partner, it is important to note that any sexually transmitted infections (STIs) that can be spread through bodily fluids can be spread through the liquid released while squirting/ejaculating. Safer sex precautions and practices apply.

How to Squirt

Squirting and/or ejaculating doesn't mean better sex and isn't in the cards for all people with vulvas, but there are some tips to try if you want to make the attempt.

First, lay down a towel. If you do squirt, it could get messy.

Relax

Starting by going it solo is often a good option because it allows you to explore without feeling pressured or inhibited.

Get "in the mood" in whatever way works for you. That might include lighting candles, dimming the lights, putting on music, and creating a soothing space. It could also look like exploring erotic material. Whatever it is that gets you in the mindset for solo or partnered sex.

Warm Up

Whether alone or with a partner, foreplay is key. Allow arousal to build over time and don't try for the big event until you are very turned on.

Find the G-spot

Stimulating the G-spot can be done in a number of ways.

You can use your hand (or your partner can use theirs) by inserting a finger or fingers into the vagina palm up and making a "come here" motion.

You can use sex toys designed to stimulate the G-spot. Some toys are made to stimulate the G-spot and the clitoris at the same time.

For partnered penetrative vaginal sex, you can find a position that puts pressure on the G-spot, such as "doggy style" (entry from behind).

Explore Your Erogenous Zones

Try stimulating the clitoris at the same time as the G-spot either with your fingers or with a toy. You can do this alone or with a partner, during manual stimulation or during penetrative sex.

For partnered sex, try having your partner stroke your G-spot with their hand while stimulating your clitoris with their mouth.

The vulva isn't the only part of the body that can elicit a sexual response from stimulation. Explore other parts of your body, literally from head to toe. See what you enjoy having touched (or kissed or licked).

Lean In To the Sensation

Don’t get worried if you feel like you have to pee. Ejaculation is different than peeing, but it can feel like you need to pee before you squirt. Give into the sensation and let it happen instead of holding back.

Some people find they feel better emptying their bladder before sex so they know the urge they feel is to ejaculate, not pee.

Keep Trying

Don't try to force it, let it happen organically. If it doesn't happen the first time you try, keep trying. Try different tactics, taking notice of what works well for you and what doesn't.

A Word From Verywell

While it can be fun to try, don't feel badly if squirting or ejaculation doesn't happen. By current estimates, most people with vulvas don't ejaculate. Whether or not a person squirts and/or ejaculates has no affect on their ability to have a fulfilling and satisfying sex life.

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Article Sources
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