Dr. Debby Herbenick

Dr. Debby Herbenick

Dr. Debby Herbenick is a sex researcher at Indiana University, sexual health educator at The Kinsey Institute, columnist, and author of five books about sex and love. Learn more about her work at www.sexualhealth.indiana.edu.

Recent posts

My sincerest apologies

Dear wonderful MSP readers,

I’m so sorry that our site was down earlier today. We were very fortunate to be linked to by one of my favorite blogs (Gizmodo) in a post that Jesus Diaz wrote about my reasons why the new iPhone 3GSex (well, Jobs et al call it the 3GS) is primed for use in sex. In no time at all, the tens of thousands of visitors was a bit much for MSP to handle. MSP crashed. Not that it was Giz’s fault, though. Continue Reading →

Bleeding during or after intercourse: Vaginal tears and other problems

Sex Crisis #2: You Get a Sex Cut

Last week we explored what to do when a condom breaks during sex. This week, I want to make sure you know how to handle sex cuts (such as tears from vaginal sex or anal sex), as they happen to many women and men at one point or another. In case you’re wondering what the heck a sex cut is, it’s a cut or tear that happens during sex. Given that vaginal intercourse is one of the most common sex acts, it’s perhaps no surprise that many sex cuts occur during vaginal sex. However, they can also happen during anal sex, fingering (of the vagina or anus) or toy play. Continue Reading →

How the new iPhone 3GS will revolutionize iPhone Sex

(Me with my iPhone 3G, back when it was still cool…)

If, like me, you were eagerly following Gizmodo’s liveblog of Apple’s Worldwide Developer’s Conference (WWDC) – or have nerd friends who were gchatting you throughout the day with updates – you likely have heard about the new iPhone 3GS by now. If you’re a regular reader of MSP or Gizmodo, you may also already know about my take (and Giz’s take) on using the iPhone 3.0 OS’s features for sex-related activities. Surely, then, you can understand how my mind might drift to thinking about the brand new iPhone 3GS that was announced today and how it will certainly change iPhone sex as we now know it. Here are my thoughts: Continue Reading →

Sex Toy Review: Lelo BO the “gentleman’s pleasure object” AKA Vibrating Cockring (general shot package)

As regular MSP readers know, I often give out sex toys to individuals and couples who I trust to provide a careful, articulate review. Here is a review from a man who has been trying the Lelo Homme “Bo” (which I recently wrote about here) alone and with his partner. It is the longest but also the most awesome review I have ever received: Continue Reading →

How many women and men use vibrators?

More than half of women have used vibrators as have nearly half of men – this from a nationally representative study that our research team at The Center for Sexual Health Promotion at Indiana University conducted last year. In the fall we presented the findings from this study at the American Public Health Association (read more from our study abstract) and more recently we’ve published articles on the topic in the Journal of Sexual Medicine (read our article about women’s vibrator use here and our article about men’s vibrator use here). Not only is this information of interest to scientists, but journalists also wisely recognize that women and men are interested in knowing how many women and men have used vibrators, what they do with them, whether they use them with a partner and such. The articulate and witty Indy.com columnist Konrad Marshall recently tackled the topic of these “personal machines that wiggle and buzz” (as he put it) in a recent piece titled “Sex & relationships: Good vibrations in sexual partnerships”. (Read the full article here.)

I think he’s wise to raise the topic – after all, just because vibrator use is common doesn’t mean that it is often openly discussed. Continue Reading →

Phone Sex Operator Plays Along with Robot Fetish

Thanks to the College Humor guys, we have another phone sex call that they made and synced with an animated video (in other words, a comedian pranked a real phone sex operator and then they created an animation to illustrate it). This one involves a fetish for robots who feel no emotion. (I originally found this via Gizmodo). Watch Phone Sex Pranks: Sex Robot on CollegeHumor
Having spent several hours at various workshops at the Apple store on Fifth Avenue this week (see below photo), I can confirm that it’s easy to fall in love with a computer… but at least for me, sex with robots or computers isn’t in the cards. Continue Reading →

Masturbation Sleeves: More Cushion for Your Pushin’

Masturbation sleeves are another term for “pocket pussies” – basically, squishy cylinders that men can insert their penis in and masturbate. You can do that and so much more with a masturbation sleeve, making them a fun surprise gift for boyfriends and husbands. Here are a few things you might want to know about masturbation sleeves:

- Some sleeves have one opening (more like a vagina in the sense that a man’s penis can only go so far before he “hits” something on the other end) whereas others have an opening on each end. Dual opening sleeves are ideal for men with a longer than average penis and they are also well-suited for couples who want to put the sleeve on a man’s penis, push it down toward the base and then hop on top for intercourse. – They come in different designs so that men can insert their penis into what looks like a vagina, anus, mouth or random objects (flowers, etc). Continue Reading →

DIY Travel Dildo: first failed sex toy attempt involved airplane peanuts (NSFW)

A few months ago I had an assignment from Time Out Chicago magazine to make a do-it-yourself (DIY) sex toy. While sex toys and gadgets can be fun, there is a particular satisfaction that comes with making your own. As I had recently written about food-related sex play in their Food & Sex issue (click here to read the article or to see photos of me with bananas, cucumbers and strawberries), we wanted to go for something other than the “use a cucumber for a dildo” routine. After perusing the internet for ideas, skimming books, talking with friends and consulting Searah from the amazing Chicago-based sex boutique Early to Bed, I narrowed down my list of ideas to several DIY sex toys that I thought would be relatively manageable and somewhat photogenic in case we wanted to show the actual toys in TOC. Then life happened. Continue Reading →

Taffy Tickler Dildo from Adam & Eve

Every now and then a sex toy comes along that sparks my curiosity (the We-Vibe, Sasi and Lelo “Bo” are recent examples). Most recently, I’ve been impressed with the Taffy Tickler dildo. Years ago, glass dildos made headlines all on their own. In fact, women and men still write me with questions about glass dildos, wanting to learn more about their advantages (e.g., how you can warm or cool them by running them under warm or cool water, how they are easy to clean under a faucet or in a dishwasher, and how they offer firm stimulation during sexual play). What’s cool about the Taffy Tickler is that it’s a new level of glass dildo. Continue Reading →

What to do when a condom breaks

Most of the time sex runs relatively smoothly, but every now and then a sex crisis occurs that makes it necessary for you to drop everything and fix it ASAP. Here’s how. Sex Crisis #1: The Condom Breaks

Although condoms rarely break or slip off, sometimes you and your partner may end up on the wrong end of bad luck. How did it happen? Maybe you forgot to check the expiration date and you used a condom from your secret high school stash. Continue Reading →