Squirting might feel like the final sticky sexual frontier, and that’s mostly because it’s rarely spoken about outside the world of porn. It’s very unlikely that you were taught about squirting (which is the involuntary release of fluid during sex) in your health class, so it’s natural to have questions. And, in fact, anything you might have seen in porn may not be an accurate representation of what squirting looks like.
“Pornography may have exaggerated the amount and force of the fluid released during squirting for cinematic effect,” says Dr. Brandye Wilson-Manigat, obstetrician and gynecologist and CEO of Brio Virtual Gynecology in California, US.
It probably comes as no surprise to you that a lot of mainstream porn doesn’t represent what sex looks like for many people. But if you’re curious about what squirting is, where it comes from, and if it’s even a real thing, we’ve got you covered. Here’s everything you need to know.
What is squirting?
Let’s start with the basics — what is squirting? Dr. Wilson-Manigat explains: “There are a few substances that come from the vaginal area during sexual activity, but for all intents and purposes, squirting is a term describing the release of a colorless, odorless fluid during sexual activity.”
So now that we know what it is, let’s explore why it can happen. When you’re aroused or turned on, your heart rate quickens, and the blood flow to your vagina (the internal part of your sexual anatomy) increases. This pushes fluid to the surface of your vaginal walls, which is what’s known as getting wet. While all of this is tied into what happens when you’re feeling frisky, this part isn’t squirting.
Squirting is a higher volume of liquid than just “getting wet.” It’s been described as a gushing sensation (rather than just feeling moist), and you’ll likely know if you’ve squirted. Some people may squirt when they have an orgasm, while others don’t need to be actively climaxing — they just experience this gushing of liquid as a result of feeling really aroused. You could release 10 ml of liquid or more. “Squirting can happen before orgasm or even in the absence of an orgasm,” explains Dr. Wilson-Manigat. “In reality, squirting is not tied to the type or quality of orgasm.”
Not everyone who has squirted in the past will squirt every time they have sex, and you may never squirt at all. This is totally typical, and what’s most important is that you feel fulfilled by and confident about the sex you’re having.