All about getting wet

Ah arousal. Getting wet. Getting turned on. Creaming. Splooshing. Juices flowing.

If you're a woman with a vagina, you've no doubt experienced that sudden rush of moisture and wetness in your knickers when something or someone turns you on and your body starts to think "Mmmm yeah, I could totally go for some lovin' right now..."

Similar to both wanted and unwanted erections, it's something we've mostly all experienced since hormones began to course through our bodies, and has continued into our adult lives, sometimes to the detriment of our logical brains, and definitely to the detriment of our undies.

So what exactly is it? Does it have a function beyond lubrication? Is too much or too little normal? And what happens when it suddenly dries up and disappears like Kati Thanda–Lake Eyre? And, like the lake, can it also come back?

The biology of getting wet 

Scientifically bodies are fascinating. They're weird and wonderful and totally gross all at the same time. The systems of connectivity between the body and the brain are amazing, and the way they both react to sexual stimuli is a great way for us as humans to realise just how complex they are.

For example, when a woman gets turned on, her body orchestrates a complex series of responses. Her heartrate increases, which in turn starts to pump blood faster. The brain then connects the genitals to all of this increased blood, and so redirects it down into the pelvic area instead of distributing it equally around the body like it might in other situations of increased heart rate (think fight or flight responses).

This increased flow then triggers the release of vaginal lubrication - a mix of water, mucus, cervical fluid, and other (sometimes debatable) liquids from the skenes glands and other areas -  which is absolutely vital to enhancing comfort and pleasure during sex and intimacy.

Too wet or not wet enough

I once had someone send me a message expressing embarrassment at the fact that they got very wet and they thought it was a problem. I did a whole bunch of research after that, spoke to doctors and read medical blogs and articles and the main consensus was that "too much" isn't really an issue at all and that a quick wipe with a towel will help if you're really worried about it (one doctor even suggested getting rid of the man who told you being "too wet" was a problem, but I'm not getting into that right now).

I've also had similar with people thinking they don't get wet enough, and that one really CAN be a problem.

For both concerns my very first comment would be "is it making sex uncomfortable or not enjoyable?" Because if sex is excellent and everyone is having a good time, there is no "too much" or "too little" about it, and you need to stop stressing.

If it IS affecting your sex life then there are steps you can take to make it a bit easier and most of them are super easy, non invasive, and cheap. Yes, I'm talking about lube.

Lubey Lubey Lube!

Experiment with different types and brands to find what works for you, but a quick run down to what is out there is this:

Water based: Slippery and great for sex, but can dry up and go a bit tacky. If you're super worried about dryness this may not be the best for you.

Silicone based: Doesn't go dry too quickly at all. Is great for water play (showers golden or otherwise). Can stain some materials and is harder to clean up as it isn't water soluble. 

Oil based: Mostly coconut oil (please don't use Vaseline). Long lasting and not too sticky but can stain and degrade latex condoms. Has been known to affect allergies in some people too.

Hybrids: These can be great. Combinations of oil and water or silicone and water etc, and can combat some of the side effects of just pure lubes (for example some water/silicone hybrids are easier to wash off, but can also last a super long time before drying). Of course sometimes it's a little more than just lubing up, and I'm sure most women reading will know exactly where I'm going with this.

Menopause and vaginal dryness

As if the mood swings, weight gain, hair loss (but not on your chin, oh no), and hot flashes weren't enough, when women begin to go through menopause, the hormonal changes that occur can lead to increased, and often uncomfortable, vaginal dryness, affecting every day life, not just sexual well-being.

If you're even in the mood for sex while all that shit is going on, there are some really great products out there that can help, and I'm not just talking about lube (although lube is totally your best sex friend, menopause or not.)

Specific vaginal moisturisers can be purchased in most adult shops and chemists and are daily creams you can apply to the inside of your vagina that help rejuvenate the cells which in turn can help with the everyday natural lubrication that keeps our vaginas healthy. Speaking to your GP or gyno about these things is as important in the menopause conversation as it is talking to them about HRT, and you should never be embarrassed to ask your doctor for information and strategies to keep yourself (including your sexy bits) healthy and happy.

Wetness outside of sex 

As stated above, doctors mostly conclude that there is "no such thing" as too much wetness during sex, and that vaginal lubrication is vitally important to comfort, pleasure, and even fertility, however there can be times when increased vaginal wetness may be a sign of ill health or hormonal imbalance, and it's important to get yourself checked out just in case. This also goes for if it becomes smelly or painful or changes colours to greenish or greyish.

Understanding your body 

Being equipped with a little more understanding of the science behind how our bodies work, as well as the intuitive nature we all have about our bodies, women are far better now at navigating their sexual health than ever before, with more understanding and confidence. They're more able to advocate for their own health, and for the health rights of others, and we are finally starting to see more research and funding put into women's sexual health and reproduction research, like the latest studies on endometriosis and other uterine afflictions.

It's important and necessary and I'm proud to be a part of it.

Before I sign off on this, I do also want to make an important point that is often ignored in articles about female arousal, and that is that the instance of "getting wet" is purely a reflex reaction to stimulation. It is NOT an indicator of consent nor even of enjoyment. There have been some really disgusting rulings in sexual assault and rape cases where a judge has deemed that because a woman was "wet" she must have enjoyed or consented to the act and therefore the defendant couldn't have possibly raped anyone.

This is bullshit. And the same goes for erections. The body reacts. That's all. There are MANY other factors that should come into consent and the conversations surrounding it and thankfully the world is starting to catch up. 

The main thing I hope you all take away from this is that bodies are cool and weird and different.  We should all know what they are capable of, and that there are things we can do to make them healthier and happier if we think there is something amiss.

Always advocate for your body, you know it better than anyone else, and it's always more than okay to get a second opinion, or walk away from people who won't listen to you.

Until next time, happy vaginal health my friends. 

1 comment

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  • Zamboon


    More than a month ago

    I love wetness but I realise it can be an embarrassing problem in some cases - I know a lady who gets wet while having a wax .. another friend was regularly getting wet at work when one of the managers addressed the staff in meeting s, she said it was something animalistic in his leadership style that triggered the response even though she was happily married and was not consciously attracted to him ... 3 months later he was regularly banging her like a kitchen door ( her words) ... so much for being happily married!

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