I tried Cosmo’s 28 lesbian sex tips

Let's just say I learned the hard way that the basic laws of physics are in place for a reason

Topics: AlterNet, cosmo, Lesbianism, Sex, Oral sex,

I tried Cosmo's 28 lesbian sex tips

“I think we should wear the cat ears,” my girlfriend said as we puzzled over the bizarre accoutrements in Cosmo’s “28 Mind-Blowing Lesbian Sex Positions.”

“We don’t have cat ears,” I said. “Or gravity-defying hair. Or…are those leis?”

While we may not have had the accessories illustrated in Cosmo’s first-ever lesbian sex guide, what we did have was determination, and a willingness to sit on each other’s faces backward for the sake of “science.”

For almost 40 years, since Helen Gurley Brown took over in 1967, Cosmo has been dishing out ridiculous sex tips for straight people involving everything from snorting pepper to performing fellatio with pastries. And while we can ostensibly agree that Cosmo’s acknowledgement of the existence of lesbian sex is a kind of progress, its suggestions for great lesbian sex are just as laughable as ever. But, in honor of Cosmo’s great leap into the 20th century, my girlfriend and I tried out several of its sex positions to see just how “mind-blowing” they might be. Since we had already tried many of the suggestions for straight people, we were understandably wary, but at least, we told ourselves, nobody would be forked in the ribs this time (probably).

Since I am a masochist and an overachiever, I wanted to start with some of the most difficult positions suggested. Thus, we started with “Over the Edge” (#27), which involves a fairly standard grinding of the vaginas, but with the added bonus of doing so while one person is halfway off the bed. I lasted about 30 seconds before my quads started burning unbearably (this, it turns out, would be a theme of the evening). I’d say about half of Cosmo’s positions were inspired by an editor’s frustrating Pilates class. After other “feel the burn” positions (“Kinky Jockey,” “Defying Gravity,” “Hot Hair Salon,” etc.), I had to wonder how the pleasure aspect factored in at all. How were we supposed to enjoy all the frotteurism if we were forced to do squats at the same time?

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“Am I not blowing your mind?” my girlfriend asked as we attempted “Tantric Tete-A-Tete” (#17), a seated pose involving clit stimulation and a creepy amount of eye contact. “I wish you were blowing something,” I thought.

Giving our thighs a slight rest, we attempted some of the standing positions. We tried to perform “Erotic Maypole” (#22), but found it literally impossible. Cosmo’s instruction is to “Stand facing each other and each wrap your left legs around the other person. Hug her close for support while she fingers you.” I was hugging my girlfriend close, because if I didn’t we both would have toppled to the ground. Our wrapped legs were less an anchor of support and more a maneuver that wouldn’t be out of place in a UFC cage match. Even using the wall for support, we could not keep our balance, let alone finger-bang each other.

But what about “Wicked Warm-Up” (#16), a milder standing pose that involves one partner on her knees and the other standing with one leg draped on her partner’s shoulder? Surely we could manage this one, I thought, sinking to the floor in what would have looked like defeat had I not been wearing cat ears.

“How’s that?” I asked, as she stood precariously on one leg while I kneeled before her. “I feel like the Karate Kid,” she said.

The most ludicrous of all was “Defying Gravity” (#6). As its name implies, it involves one participant sitting in a chair while the other does a kind of dirty downward dog—hands on the floor, ass in the air, and feet on the same chair her partner sits on. While I will say that the position did give my girlfriend a lot of access to my vag, and all the blood rushing to my head provided a mildly pleasant asphyxiation feeling, I didn’t understand why I was being forced to do a handstand in order to get head. I couldn’t imagine anyone lasting more than a few minutes in such a position without collapsing or passing out.

Many other positions, even the comparatively lazy ones, seemed to involve varying levels of ergonomic infeasibility. In poses like “Tawdry Tire-Swing” (#11) and “Breast Enhancement” (#32, with a difficulty of one “heart”), Cosmo has its Sapphic showgirls leaning back into space for no real reason, supporting themselves, evidently, by magic, or perhaps with the ab power of a zealous CrossFit instructor.

Not every position was a flop, however. “Lazy 69” (#7) was a nice variation on the rug munch standard, as was “Sultry Spoon” (#23), aka clitoral stimulation while laying down, and not even Cosmo could ruin the ol’ sit on her face routine (excuse me, “The Rocket” #3).

But for all of Cosmo’s supposed variation, many of the 28 poses could be reduced to “rub your junk on something,” which was, at the end of the day, not terribly thrilling or imaginative. Only a few postures involved penetration, and what with all the hair-pulling and scissoring examples, it definitely seemed at times like Cosmo was taking its cues from mainstream girl-girl porn. This isn’t to say no lesbian relishes the opportunity to perform the Anxious Crab Walk (Cosmo prefers to call it “The Classic Scissor” #12), because some certainly do, but by the end of our foray into the world of alliterative, cutesy sex, I grew tired of treating my genitals like a pork shoulder dry-rub, despite trying to keep both my mind and my legs open to the possibilities.

While I am happy to join my straight sisters in sharing in Cosmo’s wackier sex tips, I do hope that future suggestions will adhere to the laws of physics, or at least provide me with a sexy use for this organic marmalade that’s been sitting in my pantry forever.

Anna Pulley (@annapulley) writes about sex and social media for SF Weekly, AlterNet, After Ellen and the Chicago Tribune. She's also attempting to lead a haiku revival on her blog, annapulley.com.

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