An Expert's Guide to Hand Jobs for Men and Women

Examining the myths, merits, and sparse vocabulary of hand sex

Last week in Los Angeles, I produced a new sex-ed movie with porn star Penny Flame, all about how to get people off with your hands. I first shot Penny for the fourth edition of my reality series, Chemistry, and that's when I saw her gifted mitts in action. In one scene, she started giving a handjob to a guy, and I was mesmerized. She used her hands in such creative ways, culminating in this technique where she stroked his shaft with one hand while using her other hand to work his head. She started out with a flat palm pressing and twisting against his head, then cupped her fingers and turned her wrist like she was juicing a lemon. Lying on his back, the male performer—who, I'm pretty sure, has had plenty of pairs of hands on his dick during his career—snapped his (other) head up and actually said, "Oh my God, what are you doing to me?" Penny just giggled and kept it up. He looked ready to explode.

Later, she put her fingers to work on performer Adrianna Nicole, with equally ecstatic results. In fact, they both had their hands all over each other, and it was quite a sight. Gone are the days of fake-looking girl-on-girl porno, when most starlets look disinterested or clueless (or even slightly scared) when faced with touching another woman; these chicks are fierce when it comes to fucking each other. When Penny's fingers started moving against Adrianna's muff, I thought the cameraman might have an epileptic seizure. Suddenly, a lightbulb went off in my head: Penny needs to share her dexterous skills with the rest of the world!

Months later, the deal with Penny finally came together, and we shot a great movie, with only one dilemma: What do we call it? Right now, the working title is Penny Flame's Expert Guide to Hand Jobs for Men and Women. Wiktionary defines a handjob as "an act of masturbation performed by someone else's hand," which is pretty accurate. The problem is, when most people think of handjobs, they think of cocks. We've got plenty of cocks in the movie, but we also have lots of pussies, and I fear handjob doesn't immediately bring "vagina" to mind—which is why we tacked on "for men and women," but that just makes the title more cumbersome, less catchy. Think about it: There are a ton of well-known phrases for man-ipulating the male member (wack off, beat off, jack off), but little slang or even sexy shorthand that connotes using your digits on a woman to make her squirm or come.

Penny Flame: The girl with the golden hands.
Penny Flame: The girl with the golden hands.

When I tried to explain one such hands-on scene in the movie to an agent in the industry, he replied, "So this is like The Expert Guide to Finger-Banging Girls or something?" Finger-banging! A descriptive word, certainly less polite than handjob, and dirtier than just fingering. But as a matter of fact, fingering and finger-banging imply penetration, which isn't entirely accurate, since it's not just about the banging. Manual clitoral stimulation is boring and way too much of a mouthful. There's jerking off and the feminized jilling off, but that sounds like you're alone when it's happening. There are more descriptive terms like rubbing, stroking, petting, diddling, frigging . . . none are quite right. When was the last time you used the word "frigging" in a sentence? I thought so. If I was telling someone about using my thumb and her friends in bed, I might say I "played with her pussy," "worked her clit," or "jerked her off." Nothing sexy, nothing catchy.

In addition to the lack of an inclusive, descriptive terminology out there, I just feel like handjobs in general get a bad rap. People think of them as something immature and unskilled—what teenagers do instead of having sex. Or they're dismissed as "foreplay," a brief warmup to bigger and better things like oral sex and intercourse. Some associate hand sex only with solo masturbation and too quickly abandon it as a form of partner pleasure unto itself. Maybe it's because I'm queer, but I believe just the opposite: Hands are sexual tools. They're like the naughty bits we don't have to cover when we're in public. When I'm attracted to someone, the first thing I check out is their hands. After all, if they've got good hands, anything is possible.

When Susie Bright (susiebright.com) was the lesbian sex consultant for Bound, she was determined to get away from the typical soft-lit girl-on-girl implication-of-cunnilingus sex scene. These characters were going to fuck, and she told directors Andy and Larry Wachowski to linger seductively on their hands: "A lesbian's hands are her cock. They're the hard-on of the movie—that's what you want to follow." It's still one of the hottest dyke sex scenes in a Hollywood film, and it's all about the hands.

But hands are not just about queer sex. Hands transcend sexual orientation; hands have no gender. One of the best handjobs I ever got was in college, from a guy I had a crush on for a long time. We were acquaintances, and after getting tipsy at a party, we ended up back in my room. I had my period, and we somehow agreed that there was no need to get a towel for under my butt and muddle through potentially messy fucking. This was, after all, essentially a drunken one-night stand—but that didn't mean we weren't going to do anything. He slid his hand down my panties and went to town. This guy totally knew his way around a pussy, and he teased my cunt before zeroing in on my clitoris. His middle finger was thick and confident, applying the perfect amount of pressure and movement for my demanding clit. With his thumb and ring finger, he tugged gently on my tampon string (which seemed like a bold thing to do with a random girl), and the combination of stimulations made me come.

Hands are hot. Hands are versatile. Hands can rub you right and fill you up. Fingers can find the G-spot and the prostate better than anything else can. The trip from one pinky to the five-finger club can be a wild adventure. The next time you meet someone for the first time, and she (or he) extends a hand to you, think of the possibilities.

For more about Tristan Taormino, please visit PuckerUp.com.
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