Mind & Body

The stylish (but graphic) video course will teach how you to climax, every time

While it’s very, very gradually changing, female masturbation has historically been considered taboo, with many women well into their adulthood never experiencing an orgasm. Climax aims to change that. It’s a stylish video guide to female self-pleasure. 

When it comes to masturbation, most of us know how guys get off. Pop culture has regularly depicted it – desecrating a pie was a major plot point in American Pie in 1999 but when Allison Williams masturbated in the TV series Girls in 2012, it was considered a risque scene.

But the masturbation gap is closing. Rather than simply being glossed over, female sexuality is starting to get the attention it deserves. The British drama Sex Education gives equal weight to its female and male characters while Goop Lab filmed a woman having an orgasm.

Climax is going a step further. This educational e-series is dedicated to female pleasure.

The first season has 32 episodes and films a vulva up close as the actress illustrates different external masturbation techniques centred on, and around, the clitoris. These episodes were based on studies, scientific discoveries and testimonies of women who were open about how they reached orgasm.

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A second e-series will focus on internal stimulation of the vagina and anus.

Climax was the brainchild of Laurène Dorléac, a 29-year-old Frenchwoman. It launched in France in November last year and the English version is now available.

“Pleasure, to my mind, is a very serious topic. All our methods are based on fundamental science, we looked through all the latest scientific studies and surveys on the internet about orgasm and female pleasure,” Laurène says.

“I also interviewed more than 100 women of all ages to have a better understanding of masturbation practices and expectations to select the favourite techniques of women. You can’t read that in scientific papers.”

Laurène wants to break the taboos around female masturbation and frame it in terms of wellness.

“At the beginning, I’m talking to some of my friends about masturbation and nobody is speaking about it, everybody is very ashamed. For me it’s like a form of self-care, just like exercise and eating well, it contributes to our wellbeing,” she says.”I created Climax to speak about female masturbation in the best way.”

Laurène didn’t want to just talk about the techniques or use a mannequin, she wanted to show women what to do to get off which is why the camera is focussed on a vulva.

“We can find everything on the internet, there is great information about female pleasure thanks to articles which explain things and YouTubers who explain it in videos with sex toys but you don’t have a website where you can find all the information and at the same time you can look at videos with the vulva,” she says.

“It was important for me to create a safe place for female masturbation. It is not porn.”

The actress who performs these techniques spoke to Body+Soul on the basis of anonymity.

”In the last two years, we are witnessing the emergence of multiple initiatives on female pleasure and sexuality, such as great Instagram accounts, bloggers, movies etc., but no one had yet tackled female masturbation with a scientific angle and with explicit content. I have never seen anything so bold and courageous,” she says.

“I have to admit that I was a bit scared and worried as we didn’t know what the end result would be. What convinced me was Laurène’s scientific and rigorous approach. She assured me the project would absolutely not be pornographic, but educational. Climax is a project that I consider to be of public utility. I am very proud to be part of this movement.

“‘It’s not only about breaking down taboos around masturbation, it goes far beyond. It is reclaiming our own body, our own desires, our own sexual pleasure and identity.”

Laurène says the difference between Climax and OMG Yes, which launched in 2015, is that the focus is the techniques rather than sit-down interviews.

“With Climax, we really wanted to focus on the vulva, not the face,” she says.

“We also have a tantra episode, there is lots of feedback from women that they were struggling to reach orgasm. Many women block their breathing and one of the solutions is to practice meditation. And we also have videos for partners to give them a deeper knowledge of pleasure and the female anatomy.”

According to certified Australian sex coach and therapist, Georgia Grace, “open conversations about masturbation and pleasure will transform the individual and society”.

“The notion that people with vulvas enjoy sex is still not widely recognised on a societal, cultural, political and scientific landscape. The lack of education and discourse around pleasure contributes to this taboo,” she says.

“Unfortunately, some still perceive it as a radical act for women to be sensual, desire sex and pleasure, be autonomous and active participants in their self-pleasure practices.”

She believes online courses such as Climax and OMG Yes not only provide women the information they need, they also “normalise any taboos and empower people to invest in their erotic potential.”

Climax has three packages, priced from $57-$114. You can download a free episode here.