If You or Your Partner Have a Vulva, Its Time to Talk About The Kivin Method

*Taps microphone.*

Attention cunnilingus givers and receivers: We’ve got an oral sex technique to add to your rotation.

Behold: the Kivin method.

What is it?

At its most basic: sideways cunnilingus.

“Most people go straight down,” Stewart says.

The Kivin method has the giving partner situate their body so that it’s perpendicular — not parallel — to the receiver’s. Oh, and it also makes sure that the oh-so-sensitive perineum gets some sweet, sweet loving.

Not a geometrist? Check out this 3-D rendition.

Where did the idea come from?

After testing the method, you might want to send a bouquet of “thank you for the orgasm” flowers. But unfortunately, there isn’t one official sex master to give kudos for inventing the method.

In all likelihood, it’s been around for decades. As Stewart says, “It’s an oral sex method I, and other sex educators, have been teaching for years and years and years as ‘sideways cunnilingus.’”

But the name is thought to have gained traction from Reddit.

So, sure, the name seems random AF. But as Stewart says, “If the name makes it easier to talk aboutand ask for side-lying cunnilingus, it’s a win.” Fair.

What makes it different from the usual up and down?

There are three main benefits of the Kivin method that ~regular ol’ oral~ doesn’t provide.

First, perineum (aka taint) stimulation.

It might sound like two tiny tweaks, but consider this:

The perineum — that’s the blip of skin between the vagina and anal entrances — “is incredibly nerve-dense and yet often ignored during oral,” Stewart says. (And sadly, it’s ignored during most sexual activities.)

Second, better access to the entire vulva.

While straight-on oral provides the giver pinpointed stimulation to the clitoris, it doesn’t put the giver’s mouth in the optimal position to stimulate the receiver’s labia, clitoris, and pubic mound.

Plus, many vulva owners actually find direct clitoral stimulation too intense, to the point of being unpleasant.

Finally, Stewart adds, most clitoris owners have one side of their gem that they like licked more than the other.

“This method gives you the opportunity to discover what that side is, if you don’t already know,” she says.

Orgasm gap, begone!

How do you do it?

First, make sure the receiver wants to try it. Because not all vulva owners will!

One Redditor says: “I loathe [the Kivin method]. In fact, it makes me rage out when someone tries it, I tell them it’s no bueno but they think it’s a hidden secret path to the greatest orgasms ever known so they keep going.”

Please don’t be like these lovers!!

But if your boo enthusiastically consents, here’s how it works:

  1. The receiver lies on their back with one leg lifted.
  2. The giver slides underneath the lifted leg, lying sideways, mouth facing the receiver’s bits.
  3. The giver uses a finger (or two) to apply consistent pressure to the receiver’s perineum while swiping their tongue back and forth or up and down along the receiver’s vulva at whatever rhythm and angle the receiver enjoys.

Trust, it sounds more complicated than it actually is.

How does it feel for the receiver — is it actually a guaranteed O?

Babes, nothing is a guaranteed orgasm. Not even the Kivin method.

No two vulva owners have the exact same vulvas, hot spots, and preferences in bed. So whether or not a vulva owner climaxes comes (heh) down to what the receiver needs to climax.

That said, the Kivin method is known as having a high success rate.

Stewart says this is because this method — unlike, say, P-in-V intercourse — prioritizes clitoral stimulation, which more than a third of vulva owners say is a nonnegotiable for orgasm, and another third say greatly improves their climax.

Compliment the receiver!

*Side-eyes vaginal wash commercials.* Many vulva owners were taught that their vulvas and vaginas are dirty, smelly, or unclean (which to be very clear, they’re not!).

Still, unlearning this misogynistic rubbish is a lifelong process.

Telling your partner how good they taste and smell can do worlds for easing any lingering anxieties that interfere with pleasure.


  • “I’ve been thinking about how you taste all damn day.”
  • “I could lie down here and breathe in forever.”
  • “I love having your juices line my mouth.”
Oh, and be enthusiastic

Most vulva owners have also been socialized to put their pleasure, needs, and wants second, which can make them feel guilty about being the center of attention during sex.

Don’t be shy about throwing your boo a compliment. Or seven.

Bring in a sex pillow or wedge

For bigger-bodied folks, something like the Liberator Wedge or Dame Pillo — which can be positioned under the receiver’s hips to lift their bum up — can create more space between the receiver’s leg and the bed.

This means the giver doesn’t have to bear the weight of the receiver’s leg.

Add in a vibrator

“Likely, the giver will be using their tongue along the receiver’s clit, so a clitoral vibrator will just get in the way,” Stewart says.

But if the giver needs internal stimulation to get over the edge, she says, “You might have the giver use an internal vibrator on the receiver.”

A few internal vibrators that might work:

  • Unbound Bender
  • Fun Factory Stronic G Pulsator
  • Dame Arc
Or just use a finger

So long as your nails are trimmed and fingers are clean, using your finger to penetrate your partner (with consent) will be a much appreciated move for the 18 percent of vulva owners who can orgasm via penetration.

Pop in a butt plug

Because TBH, what sex acts aren’t made better by the addition of a booty plug?

And as Stewart says, “It all comes down to layering erogenous zones.”

So, if your booty is one of your hot spots, go ahead and slide one in.

If you’re feeling really adventurous, you might try a vibrating butt plug like the We-Vibe Ditto or a plug that simulates anilingus, like the b-Vibe rimming plug.

Use lube

Stewart recommends adding a dab of lube on the vulva side of a dental dam to help reduce the potentially uncomfortable friction between the clitoris and barrier.

But even if you aren’t using a barrier method, you may opt to use the wet stuff.

For instance, if the receiver is self-conscious about their taste, you may opt for a glycerin-free, flavored lubricant, like Sliquid Swirl Green Apple.

And if the giver has dry mouth, you might try a lube with aloe (which helps the body produce more saliva), like Good Clean Love.

Oh, and obviously you N-E-E-D to use lube if there’s backdoor action.

What if it doesn’t ‘work’?

Ask yourself:

  • Did the receiver experience pleasure?
  • Did I learn more about what I do and do not enjoy?
  • Did we have fun trying something new?

If you answered yes to any one of these questions, it “worked”!

Once more for the pleasure seekers in the back: Orgasm isn’t the only measure of success in bed. K?

What’s the bottom line?

The Kivin method is certainly worth trying. But there’s no one-size-comes-all move.

So, if it makes you or your boo experience out-of-this-universe pleasure? Fab!

But if not? Enjoy exploring until you learn what does!

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