Sex Ed Friday: What Exactly ‘Scissoring’ Is And How To Do It

No, it’s not just a “porn” thing.

Photo by istock

Scissoring is the most debated sex position to ever exist. Anytime the topic of scissoring is brought up, expect a hearty debate. Whether in a group of lesbians or straight dudes: everyone has an opinion on scissoring.

Is it even a real position? How does it work? Would it even feel good? It seems so complicated? Is it just a porn thing? 

To me, it’s pretty offensive that straight people think they’re allowed to even have an opinion about queer sex. Because when they perpetuate these myths that our sex isn’t “real” or “valid,” there are young queer girls thinking that their first time with their girlfriend didn’t really “count.” But trust us, babe, it fucking counts. Scissoring is real and can be amazingly intimate and orgasmic.

It’s high time that GO writes a little more about this ubiquitous lesbian sexual activity.

Photo by Netflix

The basics.

To start off, a basic definition of scissoring (also known as tribadism) is the act of rubbing genitals together. But really it’s so much more than that. Scissoring isn’t just one sex position, it’s a type of sex you can have. There are many different ways to explore scissoring and some might work better for you and your partners’ bodies than others! It’s fun to try it out and see what feels pleasurable for you.

Classic scissoring

This position is where the name comes from because it’s formed by two bodies connecting in a way two scissors might. One partner lies on her back with her legs spread while the other lies kind of on her side so that she can slide her legs between her partners. The fun part about this position is that both of your hands are free so you can add digital stimulation or a ~vibrator~ between the two of you.

Pro tip: This position might take a bit of practice before you find your groove. Be patient with yourself and your partner. Lube always helps and it’s okay to self-stimulate during sex if you want to (which can be extra titillating in this position)!

The sitting-flexible scissoring

This position requires one partner to have pretty flexible hips. One partner sits with her legs bent and spread. The other lies on her back with one leg underneath her partner and the other leg propped on her partner’s shoulder (hence the flexibility needed). This position is fun because it allows both of your bits to really feel one another fully.

Pro tip: Maybe do a yoga class in the morning before you go for this position. Then add a little lube to keep things slippery smooth down there and have at it, babes!

 

The workout scissoring

This is probably my least favorite scissoring position because it requires each partner prop themselves up. It’s basically the classic scissoring but you’re each sitting up, propped by your outside hand. If one of you has a bit of dexterity, then you can even hoist your body off the bed to really get grinding fast. The nice thing is you can have that face-to-face intimacy with your babe.

Pro tip: Add a pillow (or two) underneath your arm so you don’t tire out from having to prop yourself up.

Full body intimate scissor

I really love this position when I want to feel really connected with my partner. Like usually, this is the position of sex I cry after (TMI I know, but we all do it, right?!). One partner lies on her back with her legs spread while the other is on top (face-to-face) and you each rub clit of hip/upper thigh. Since this is basically missionary-turned-scissoring you have your hands free for touching/kissing/playing throughout.

Pro tip: You can add in a thigh strap on here for penetrative fun as well.


Though these are all amazingly fun options to try, it’s also fully possible that scissoring just doesn’t work for some partners. Sometimes your body just don’t match up for that clitoral level grinding and that’s okay. Sex is supposed to be fun and not hard work.

Scissoring is like most other types of sex, it’s awkward until it’s not. And when it’s no longer awkward, it’s ah-mazing. So don’t be discouraged if there’s legs flailing and body parts misaligned. Once you find that sweet spot and get your rhythm down, you’ll see what all the fuss is about.


Corinne Werder is a writer, sex educator and girl on the move currently residing in Brooklyn, NY. She looks at the world through the lens of a pleasure activist, femme-of-center queer woman. Her background in sex education comes from her volunteer work with RAINN, her work as a sexual assault/domestic violence advocate and she is currently a student at the Institute for Sexuality and Enlightenment. 

Have more sex questions? Leave a comment below or email corinne@gomag.com and come back for more every Friday! 

The advice offered in this column is intended for informational purposes only and should not replace or substitute for any medical, or other professional advice or help. For concerns requiring psychological or medical advice, please consult with an appropriately trained and qualified specialist This column, its author, the magazine and publisher are not responsible for the outcome or results of following any advice contained within this column.