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August 5, 2022

There’s No Viagra for Vulvas, but This Comes pretty damn Close. {Partner}

This article is written in partnership with Vella—they’re dedicated to putting science in service of great sex, and closing the orgasm gap between men and women. We’re honored to work with them. ~ ed.

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There’s a high likelihood that you’re “orgasm challenged” if you’re a woman.

At least that’s what science says, with studies finding that women orgasm just 51 to 60% of the time during vaginal intercourse with clitoral stimulation (1). And that’s if we’re lucky enough to orgasm at all, because as it turns out, about 10% of us women never achieve orgasm (2).

Considering all that and the fact that men climax about 95% of the time, compared to us, it’s no surprise that a slight majority of women report being unsatisfied with their sex lives (3).

Yes, ladies, the “orgasm gap” is alive and too well in our between-the-sheets worlds. But who better to lead the sexual charge toward erotic equality than chemist Dr. Michael Frid and the expert who developed Viagra® and Cialis®, Dr. Harin Padma-Nathan?

The duo put their professional heads together to create Vella, a pre-play topical women’s pleasure serum that’s here to help us bridge that gap. And gals, let me tell ya: it’s the veritable hero of our vulvas.

You’re a lady. Make sure you come first—every time (Take 20% off with code EJ20) >>

We know what you’re wondering, and no; there’s no such thing as Viagra for women.

To understand why we won’t be seeing “Viagra Vulva” on the shelves anytime soon, and why Vella’s sensual intelligence in a bottle is the dream cream we’ve been looking for, we need to come to an understanding of exactly how we get turned on, and how we don’t.

I mean, on the one hand, some researchers tell us that we can orgasm 12 different ways (4), and yet many of us, it would seem, struggle to orgasm at all. So, what gives? Let’s address the elephant in the room:

Women are, frankly, physiologically different than men. So, it goes without saying that the way our brains light up in preparation to get down and dirty is a little different than the way it does for men.

We women have a cycle of desire, arousal, and climax, and each stage is intricately connected to the other (5)—like the threads of the lace on our pretty little panties.

First, we gotta get in our groove and feel into the mood. We need to savor the shedding of our clothes—the sensuality of either slipping or ripping them off.

Then comes arousal—the body’s response to our mind-driven desire. Our clitoris pulses and swells with the tide of our flowing feminine fluids. Our vaginal walls give in to the sensation and relax, opening us for sex or self-play.

The trouble, for us women, too often comes in that first phase of desire.

But if that desire doesn’t happen, or if we are distracted by the laundry in every corner of the room, the neighbor talking loudly on their balcony feet from our bedroom window, or the ambient stress that stays so dutifully present in the background of our mind, we can be thrown off our O game, left to remain dry and physiologically up-tight about having sex.

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Ugh! The female orgasm might seem elusive and complicated, but it’s not always as tricky as we might think.

As women, we’re likely all too familiar with the fact that our sexuality has a history of being either too taboo to discuss or simply ignored in the scientific world and society.

That observation is validated by Dr. Harin Padma-Nathan, lead Principal Investigator for Viagra® and Cialis®, and Co-founder and Chief Scientific Officer at Vella.

When looking for a way to ensure that ladies could come first in a world so often focused on men’s reaching the finish line (in more ways than one), he said that “The biggest hurdle for developing an effective and easy arousal therapy for women was the female orgasm being labeled as ‘too complicated.’”

In that sort of belief system, the organ causing the so-called “complication” is the female brain, and that’s where scientists so often tend to get thrown off when looking to find ways to amp up women’s arousal. They often hyper-focus on the mental and emotional aspects of our turn-ons.

Sharon McCutcheon/Unsplash https://unsplash.com/photos/gYBjwkO7E5s

Some experts even believe women’s arousal woes are strictly (or, at least mostly) psychological at their core (6). And so came to be the few ways we tend to frame female sexual dysfunction.

Can you see yourself in any of these? ‘Cause I certainly do:

Hypoactive sexual desire disorder (HSDD): We have little or no thoughts or fantasies about sex, don’t respond to our partner’s sexual signals or suggestions, lose desire for sex while having it, or avoid sex altogether.

Genital Arousal Disorder: Essentially, we have trouble getting or staying turned on.

Orgasm Disorder: Self-explanatory. We either don’t have orgasms, or it takes a long time, or we come less often than we’d like. Maybe our orgasms just aren’t as strong as we’d like. That’s this guy.

Vulvodynia: We’re in pain. We burn, sting, feel raw, ache, throb, or swell in our vulva (not in the good ways) and that isn’t from an infection or other medical problem (8).

All those “beauties” can be caused by underlying issues like depression and stress; hormonal imbalances; past sexual trauma; a slew of circulatory, nerve, and other medical conditions; and taking SSRI or other medications.

With three of those four categories of sexual dysfunction being heavily mind or mind-body centered (as opposed to strictly physical), many treatments for those frameworks involve “treatments” and “solutions” like talk therapy, stress reduction, exercising to improve mood, or doing Kegel exercises (7).

In other words, they focus almost solely on the mental interest in sex, but they don’t necessarily do anything to make sex seem more appealing. They don’t help us get closer to orgasm, or even make sex more pleasurable. In short, they don’t look at the whole picture. Does that sound effective to you?

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It didn’t to Padma-Nathan and Vella co-founder, Dr. Michael Frid, either. They believed that while women’s arousal can indeed be mind-centered, we shouldn’t treat female sexual dysfunction like it’s all in our heads because, well, it isn’t. And frankly…

Your lack of desire shouldn’t be treated like a mental disorder.

Women’s arousal, as mind-heavy as it can be, is also highly physical. While mental health-centered therapies can help us address just one side of our arousal conundrum, it’s not an either/or situation.

That’s why Frid and Padma-Nathan decided to look at the genital smooth muscle tissue that both sexes share.

Similar to the way that sexual arousal in men is an erection, female arousal is lubrication and clitoral engorgement, according to Harin. “The basic physiology is the same,” he says, so physiological arousal is a precursor to orgasm in both men and women” (6).

Vella uses science in service of great sex to tap into arousal, and turns the heat up down south in our genitals, rather than our brains. It fans our flicker to a flame by delivering pure, nano-encapsulated CBD molecules deep beyond the skin to inspire women’s arousal.

Here’s why that’s important: recent studies suggest that women with low sexual desire might actually have problems detecting genital excitement (8), leading to what seems to be a lack of primal want.

Increase arousal’s intensity so that it’s difficult to miss, and Shazam! Our physical excitement rushes toward greater intensity and (quite possibly) an orgasm, which, by the way, can last anywhere between 13 and 51 seconds before the body begins to return back to normal (9).

“Where can I get one of those,” you ask? From Frid and Padma-Nathan at Vella.

Join the 90% of happy women for 20% off with code EJ20 >>

Er, not directly, of course, but through Vella, which focuses on the body for once, giving us women more frequent, more intense, and more satisfying orgasms—and it’s effective as heck.

To be honest, I applied my first few pumps of Vella only half-heartedly while watching “Only Murders in the Building” as a means to mentally veg out during one of the worst mental health weeks I’ve had in over a year. I figured it made a good experiment: be in a tough space mentally and see if a serum that should theoretically work despite that factor, actually got anything going.

About an episode in, a casual graze of my labia (despite my spandex shorts barrier) proved inspiration enough to take a masturbatory self-care break.

Angela Tarazevich/Pexels https://www.pexels.com/photo/person-putting-lotion-on-leg-7466779/

The lubrication factor was real, and while each different genital sensation was only subtly enhanced (there was a bit of a sparkle, if you will), the big finale wowed. It’s been a minute since I’ve felt that sort of satisfaction on my own—especially in the midst of such a low mental health moment.

I’m not the only one. Vella was found in trials to work for two out of three women. And when we say “work,” we mean that according to 90% of the females aged 18 to 75 who gave it a shot:

>> 60% of women felt an increase in their arousal
>> 60% experienced an increased intensity of orgasm
>> 50% enjoyed increased ease of orgasm
>> 40% reported an increased frequency of orgasm
>> 40% reported increased satisfaction with their orgasm (5)

That’s all despite the physical, mental, and emotional barriers that might usually keep us from climaxing.

It’s your pleasure; keep it coming.

When we get right down to it, our feeling safe and heard and cared for in the bedroom isn’t necessarily going to translate into satisfying sex if we can’t get our blood pumping and our juices literally flowing.

Most of us need our own unique mix of stimulation—vaginal, clitoral, you name it, to achieve arousal and orgasm. And that last bit is what Vella’s here to address.

So, while there may not be Viagra for women simply based on our basic functioning being different (though, yes, in some ways the same), there are now other actions we women can take to reclaim power over our pleasure. Namely, we can take matters into our own hands, via fingertips infused with Vella, and slip into the sweetness of a sensual moment—on our own, or with a partner who is ready to play along—naughty or nice.

Move over, Viagra. There’s a feminine power in the house, and her name is Vella.

Take power over your pleasure. Take 20% off your first full-size jar of Vella with code EJ20 >>

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The Best Orgasms of your Life—at your Fingertips.

1. Your pleasure is a priority.

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It’s time to make coming, come easy. Crafted by scientists, Vella Women’s Pleasure Serum is a pre-play topical serum for arousal and orgasm. It relaxes your vaginal & clitoral smooth muscle tissue, promoting more frequent, more intense, more satisfying orgasms.
Use code EJ20 for 20% OFF >>
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Resources:

1. https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s10508-017-1102-6 
2. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5087699/
3. https://www.healthywomen.org/content/article/new-survey-most-women-are-not-satisfied-their-sex-lives
4. https://www.everydayhealth.com/sexual-health/the-female-orgasm.aspx
5. https://vellabio.com/pages/the-science
6. https://vellabio.com/blogs/vella-voice/does-a-female-viagra-exist
7. https://www.plannedparenthood.org/learn/sex-pleasure-and-sexual-dysfunction/sexual-dysfunction
8. https://www.psypost.org/2019/05/study-indicates-mental-arousal-may-be-more-important-for-women-with-low-sexual-desire-53603
9. https://vellabio.com/blogs/vella-voice/demystifying-the-female-orgasm

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