How do I French kiss?
1) Dear Alice,
Hey, okay, well I french kissed this guy and I didn't use my tongue. Are girls supposed to use their tongues? If so, which way does it go??
2) Dear Alice,
I have never really frenched a guy!! I have kissed like open mouth but not french. I was reading an article the other day in a mag (embarrassing moments) and this girl forgot to swallow her spit and when they pulled away it was like a big line of spit forming from both of their mouths. I was wondering if they were inexperienced or if they just forgot to swallow. I also have another question. My friend is going out with this guy and he always clanks teeth and bites her tongue and I'm hoping I won't be like that. How can you prevent it? Thank you so much.
Need help!!! (and fast)
Dear Confused and Need help!!! (and fast),
Thanks for sending in your questions! In a French kiss, people use their tongues which often makes a kiss more sensual. How you use your tongue is up to you and the person you’re kissing, but it may require a certain amount of finesse. Either or both of you can use your tongues, depending on what you like. Generally, if you build up to a French kiss, it will feel more natural than if you go for the gusto right away. Perhaps you’d like to start with a few pecks on the cheek, neck, and lips, and then lead up to a more intimate, open-mouthed kiss. Every person has their own techniques, so it may take time for you and your kissing partner to explore and share what you do and don't like. Whether you’re kissing for fun, as a part of foreplay, or to deepen a relationship with someone, remembering to get consent from all sides before trying anything can be crucial.
When you’re French kissing someone, you could come right out and ask if it would be okay if you kiss them. If you’re feeling more shy you might try easing into it to make sure everyone is comfortable. Sending non-verbal signals like glances at their lips, flirty looks, or starting to brush your tongue on their lips during a regular kiss might suggest that you want to go further. If they’re receptive, try using your tongue to gently explore the other kisser's lips, mouth, or tongue. This could mean brushing your tongue along their tongue or swirling the tips of your tongues around each other.
Other techniques to try if you're open to it are caressing their back, chest, neck, or other parts of their body, changing how deeply you're kissing, gently nibbling your partner’s lips, or even kissing other parts of their face and body. These could make your make-out session more pleasurable and add some variety into the moment. You may find out you really love how some of these additions feel, and if you don't, let your partner know that you want to try something else!
French kissing doesn’t have to be a quick activity. It’s perfectly fine to take breaks to enjoy the sensation, come up for air, or to swallow your spit. Some people might even use the time to stroke their kissing partner’s face or talk about what they liked in the last kissing sesh. To avoid clanking teeth when kissing, try adjusting the tilt of your head so that you don’t accidentally bump into your kissing partner’s chompers. And if your teeth do bump, you and your partner can just laugh about it and keep on going—no big deal!
Kissing should be enjoyable for both people involved, so speak up if something is uncomfortable or if it hurts. For example, imagine that in the heat of the moment you realize that your partner has latched onto your lip like a hook in a fish’s mouth. You could say: "Oooh, that kind of hurts—could you try being gentler with my lips? I want to make sure they stay smooth and soft for you!” Being nice about it can alleviate any awkward moments. Plus, you can even take that as an opportunity to ask what your kissing partner likes and doesn't like about the way you kiss.
As for getting better at French kissing, it might just take some time or experimentation. You could try to find a friend or kissing partner to practice with if they agree to it. The next time you’re kissing someone, ask that person if they want to practice Frenching with you. Setting boundaries in any of these scenarios can ensure that no one crosses a line. Be sure to communicate about the terms of the relationship or arrangement, and make sure they're into it before you start kissing someone. Consent goes both ways meaning both you and your kissing partner can bring up concerns or discuss what you like. Likewise, you both should try to respect the other’s decisions.
Ultimately, kissing isn’t a science. Figuring out what you and your partner like is a process, and you’ll learn a whole lot along the way. Kissing preferences might even change with time, the situation, and your partner. And don’t forget, the more you kiss, the more experienced you’ll become!
Originally published Sep 04, 1998
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