Male nipples are often overlooked when it comes to sex, with their female counterparts hogging the limelight. Why is this? It may have something to do with the fact that thanks to misogyny, women’s bodies are more heavily and readily sexualized than men’s bodies, ergo women’s nipples are never seen as simply a functional body part (hi, breastfeeding!) but only as sexual focal points. It may also be that since cis men’s nipples do not serve a practical nutrition-related purpose in the same way as cis women’s do, they’re regarded as superfluous and therefore not worthy of attention. Either way, these patterns do a disservice to all people’s bodies.
“The most common misconception about male nipples is that they are not as sensitive as women’s nipples. This is simply not true,” says sex coach Danielle Harel, Ph.D. “In fact, there are some men who need nipple stimulation in order to come or to be able to come more quickly or intensely.”
One 2018 study found 52% of men ages 18 to 22 found nipple stimulation sexually arousing, whether enhancing arousal or actually triggering it.
Women who sleep with men might avoid their partners’ nipples, as they’re not aware that they’re a possible powerful erogenous zone in the same way that they can be for women. Even men who sleep with other men might be a little wary of engaging with their partners’ nipples if they personally don’t have much sensation and assume it’s the same for other guys. But don’t leave men’s nipples out in the cold! They, too, are worthy of some extra TLC.