How Much Does Penis Size Matter?

Penis size is a—mostly unnecessary—concern for many men, in part because they compare themselves with what they see in porn.  However, male porn stars are hired because they have freakishly large penises.  They are not normal or representative of the general population.

Most women who have actually had sex with men with porn-sized penises are quite consistent in saying they that they do not prefer it, because it is awkward and frequently painful.

As one Redditor put it:
I am an average-size girl and had to break up with a guy because his schlong was just too friggin big. I liked the dude a lot otherwise but the, er, incompatibility was just too much. It just made me dread sex because it was so uncomfortable, in any position and in any hole.
Another agreed:
I have had both [experiences with very large and very small penises] and I would just like to say that if and when given the choice between the two, I would much rather have a very small penis than a very large. Being sore for days and feeling like your cervix is beat to shit is not worth the three second orgasm it produces.
This fits what the research says.  Analyses of women's sexual satisfaction consistently show almost no correlation with differences in erect penis size between 10 and 17cm (3.9 and 6.7 inches). That includes 96% of all adult males.

Any man who wonders whether his penis is undersized should use a ruler to measure the erect penis.  Press the end of the ruler firmly against your pubic bone and hold the ruler and the penis at right angles to your body.  Measure along the top side of the penis, from the pubic bone to the tip of the glans (the head of the penis).  Then check the green line on the chart below:

Source: SCIENCE (AAAS): How big is the average penis?

Scientific surveys with actual measurements—not estimates or self-reports—consistently put the average erect penis length right around 13cm (5.1) inches.  That is much less than most people guess.  

For example, this major study (Am I normal? A systematic review of penis length and circumference in 15 521 men) put the average length at 13.12 cm or 5.17 inches.

As you can see from the chart, the vast majority of penises (98%) are between 9 and 17 centimeters, or between 3.5 and 6.7 inches in length.

So... How Big is a "Porndick" Really?

Anxiety about penis size became an epidemic starting in the 1990s when porn became widely available on the Internet.  The porn industry hires men with large cocks and then goes to great lengths—ahem!—to make you think those cocks are bigger than they are.  So how big are they?

There's a fascinating Tumblr blog called "Pornstar Measurements" devoted to answering this very question.  As the author writes: 
The porn industry uses all kind of propaganda and tricks into fooling people that "monster" cocks exist. In reality most cocks in porn are between 6.5 and 8 inches. ...
Porn is fantasy not reality. There is no cock in porn bigger than 9.5 inches. Anything over 10" is almost guaranteed to be fake.  
Anything over 6" is big and a real measured 8.5" or 9" is gigantic.

Here are some numbers from the blog (most have been rounded up, so reality may be as much as half an inch less):

Seth Dickens:     6"
Billy Glide:      6.5"
Ramon Nomar:      6.5"
James Deen:       6.5 - 7"
JT Money:         6.5 - 7"
Nick Moreno:      6.5 - 7"
Preston Parker:   6.5 - 7"
Ben English:      7"
Castro:           7"
Peter North:      7"
Criss Strokes:    7"
Johnny Sins:      7 - 7.5"
Chris Charming:   7.5"
Kieran Lee        7.5 - 8"
Wesley Pipes:     8.5"
Danny D.:         8.5"
Lexington Steele: 8.5"
Mandingo:         9.5"

Nearly all of these porn stars claim to be at least three inches longer than they really are, and all sorts of camera tricks are used to make them look larger on film.  It's no wonder so many men with perfectly normal 4-6" penises think they're subnormal!

Okay, what about dildos?

Very few women (less than 1% in most surveys) masturbate by thrusting with a dildo as the sole source of stimulation.  That's something men should think about if they expect women to orgasm just from penetration.

But about 5-10% of women say that, at least some of the time, they like to have something "filling up" the space and stretching the vagina a bit while they stimulate their clitoris. Some women also like having a dildo in the vagina during oral sex. And some like having a dildo in the vagina during anal sex, creating a "double penetration" sensation.

So, although most women don't use dildos at all, enough do to create a large market for them.  This means that sex toy makers have a real interest in finding out what size dildo most women prefer.

There are, of course, plenty of oversized dildos for sale, but they are specialty items, not best-sellers, and many of the buyers are men.  Researchers who have investigated the sex toy market report back that the best-selling models are .... drumroll, please! ... between 4 and 6 inches in insertable length, and between 4 and 5 inches around.  

And the mean length and circumference of the real thing?  5.17" long and 4.6" around.  Or, as the researchers said:
CONCLUSION:  Length and circumference of vibrators and dildos varied, but on average approximated mean penile dimensions.  [Herbenick, et al.; Journal of Sexual Medicine, 2015 Mar;12(3):641-5. doi: 10.1111/jsm.12798. Epub 2015 Jan 28.]

I would go further.  If you read the reviews of even the smaller dildos and dildo-shaped vibrators, you will see frequent comments like "fills me up nicely" or "perfect for my dimensions!"  You will almost never see a sex toy downrated for being too short.  

On the other hand, it is fairly common to see an extra long dildo described as being "too long for me" or "sticks out too far," even though a woman doesn't need to insert it all the way.

I asked an informal sample of friends about this, and most of the ones who use a dildo or vibrator for solo play say they insert it only about 4 inches.  That distance is even less for G-spot dildos, which these women say they insert only about 2 inches.

Several of  these women also commented that men tend to push dildo or vibrator in too far, which is one reason these women don't like having oversized toys on hand.

Female customers do sometimes comment on a vibrator or dildo being too thick, and it appears that the thickest toys are the ones most likely to end up forgotten at the back of a drawer or the bottom of a box.  (If it hurts, it's likely to keep on hurting, and unlike a dildo that's too long, you can't use just part of the girth!)

So let this sink in:  when women are buying a toy for their own pleasure, they overwhelmingly prefer one that resembles a normal-sized penis in girth and insertable length.

Why do People Overestimate Average Penis Size?

Besides the absurd exaggeration in the porn industry, another reason for the widespread overestimation of average length is the barrage of penis enlargement ads and emails. Almost all of these ads claim falsely that the average length is seven inches, even though seven inches is actually above the 99th percentile.  

It's a nonsensical number, but few people are in a position to measure a random sample of erections, so the sheer repetition of the number has imprinted it in people's heads.

Obviously these scam artists benefit by creating a sense of insecurity in their target audience by wildly exaggerating the norm.  If they told the truth, that ~5 inches is the average and that most women prefer men with normal-sized penises, who would buy their phony potions and gadgets?

Yet another reason for chronic overestimation is the natural tendency to exaggerate when it's hard for people to check up on you.  In study after study, men have been shown to consistently overstate their own dimensions by 1 to 5 centimeters (.4 inches to 2 inches).

But, oddly enough, when it comes to their partners, women tend to give even more inflated estimates than men do, consistently adding 2.5 - 7.5cm (1 to 3") to their partner's length. Partly this reflects the way emotions affect our judgment, but I think part of it is also a loyalty thing, because we want to represent our men in the best light.

Among lovers, research has shown that women tend to over- or under-estimate penis size according to their emotional involvement and are quite inaccurate when asked to guess the actual size of a lover's or ex-lover's penis.  The reality-distortion effect is reflected in this—somewhat exaggerated—chart from How Women View Penis Size Over Time:


(Thus demonstrating that love is the only "penis enlargement" technique that actually works!)

Furthermore, there's a curious interaction between the mythical 7" number from the penis enlargement ads and women's own experiences.  If a woman has had enough sexual experience to have a sense of what "average" really means, she often assumes that that average penis she has in mind must be seven inches long.  If her current partner's penis is a little smaller than average, she will therefore guess that it is six inches or six and a half inches instead of four inches or four and a half.

You'd think that just gripping something in your hand would let you estimate it's length fairly accurately, but this appears not to be true automatically.  You actually have to think about what you're doing.

If you're a woman, try this:  stack your fists one on top of the other, leaving the center open like you're gripping a vertical pole.  Look down the center and look at your hands from several angles.  Is your man's penis really that long?

Most likely you'll say it isn't quite, or that it barely is.  Now do the same thing, but grip a ruler in your fists.  Push your bottom hand and the base of the ruler down on a hard surface and look at what the ruler says.  If you have average hands for a woman, your fists will cover around 15cm or 5.9 inches, but there's wide variation.  I have small hands, and my two-fisted grip measures 5 inches.  A friend of mine with self-described "big peasant-girl hands" measured 7 inches.

Whatever it is, remember the number and then try that on your partner the next time he's hard and you're in a position to grab hold with both hands.  Does an extra inch poke out the top?  Or is there leftover space inside the top hand?

Every time during my interviews that I've had a woman tell me her partner's penis was 7" or 8" long, I've asked her to do this exercise.  And all but one of them told me, either right then, looking at their hands, or later on, after physically checking, that the reality was more like 5" or 6" instead.

Keep this in mind when you read quotes from women, including the ones in this article. When a woman describes a penis as being "8 or 9 inches" long, in reality it almost always turns out to be 6-7 inches long.

(FWIW, my impression is that there is less distortion in descriptions of small penises.  A "3 inch" penis is probably around 2.5-4 inches.)

Stupid Media Tricks
The media also contribute a great deal to this confusion over penis size and what women want.  The popular press isn't noted for getting science right, and reporters do love to run sensational stories about sex, so this is probably inevitable.  But it leads to a lot of people thinking they know things that aren't true.

One recent study that was widely misreported in the press found that women who were shown simple computer drawings of unknown men with limp penises (not erections) mildly preferred the men with limp penises that were three inches long, versus those that were shorter.  The same study found that being tall and having broad shoulders and a narrow waist were more important to them than limp penis size.  In fact, penis size was the least important factor in the women's choices by a considerable margin.

Is that what got reported?  Of course not!  Instead, many popular newspapers and magazines and many websites responded to this innocuous little study by trumpeting headlines like "SIZE DOES MATTER!" and writing completely dishonest articles about it.

(See Do Women Prefer Well-Endowed Men? Why You Should Be Skeptical Of The New Study Claiming “Size Matters” by Dr. Justin Lehmiller for a discussion of why a visual preference for a drawing of a strange man with a limp penis has nothing to do with actual preferences in the bedroom.)

What Women Say About Their Experiences

If you want to get a feel for what women say about their experiences with penises of very different sizes, here's a great collection of comments:

21 Women Reveal What It Was Like To Have Sex With A Large Or Small Penis

If there is a clear consensus, it's that having a normal-sized penis is good.  One woman whose first lover had an oversized penis put it this way:
I could barely open my jaw far enough to the get the thing in my mouth. We could only have sex in missionary position because everything else hurt so badly. I was not particularly impressed with intercourse (or giving oral, for that matter).
The rest of my relationships have been with men with normal size penises. I found out, holy shit, having sex with them is fucking easy. I don’t have to use a cup of lube to have intercourse or use an ice pack on my face after giving a blow job. I don’t get what the big deal is for big dicks. Give me a normal dick any day.
Several of the women quoted in that article had experienced both large and small extremes and said that their experiences were better with the men with the smaller penises.  For the women who describe having problems with a man with a small penis, it was always because of his insecurity about his penis, not because of the actual size of his penis.

Interestingly, porn stars tend to agree. Even though one would expect "size queens," women who have a fetish for large penises, to be over-represented in the porn industry, this doesn't seem to be so.  Recently a reporter went around at a British porn convention and interviewed a dozen pornstars.  You can see the results here:  Pornstars Answer: Does Size Matter? 

For example:  "What's the perfect size?"

Answer:  "Actually, there's not a perfect size.  If somebody can use it good, and it's not really extreme, big or small, then there's not a perfect size."

Over the many interviews I have done, as well as a great deal of reading, this has been the most common attitude expressed by women who have had a lot of experience with different men.  They consistently prefer a "Goldilocks Cock," one that is in the broad middle of the range – not too long or wide, not too short or thin, but "just right."

Attitude Is Critical

It's impossible to overstate the importance of a man's attitude, especially his confidence and enthusiasm and his desire to do whatever it takes to make the experience great for his partner.

Three women made very similar comments about attitude on the negative side:
A lot of guys with big dicks think that all they need to be good at sex is a big dick. I’d rather take a guy with an average dick who cares about my pleasure any day.
The worst thing about a big dick is that the guy often thinks that’s all he needs to bring to the relationship.
A big dick does not mean a great partner. So much of sex is about touch, anticipation, generosity, comfort levels, [and] tenderness… things that have nothing to do with penis size and everything to do with the energy between two people.
Three more commented on the positive side:
My experience with an extremely small penis was pretty positive because the guy took amazing steps to compensate.
Small is great for anal. Also, if they are not too self-conscious about it, regular sex can be great. It has been my experience that men with smaller penises make up for it with knowing what to do with it, and knowing what to do with their hands and mouths too.
If I had to pick between the extremes, I'd rather have super small than super large. The small guys know it and they have all sorts of neat and fun tricks to make up for it. I may not have gotten off from penetration, but I certainly didn't leave unsatisfied.

How Size Affects Style and Position

The one role that relative size does play is that it can definitely have an influence on the type of sex that works best for a particular couple.  This is something women need to know as well as men.

Here's an excerpt from one of the women in that article who had had experience with men at the high end of the scale, describing the great sex she had with a man whose penis was genuinely toward the small end:
If I’m being generous I would guess it was pretty close to 3 1/2 inches, fully erect. I definitely had a moment of pause, I wasn’t expecting this… But he didn’t hesitate or apologize or wince about it and that’s what spurred me on, his own confidence.

The sex was awkward [at first]. My previous two partners had both had about 8 inches and I had grown used to a different style of fucking. I was trying to bounce around and thrust as I had done with the oversized wangs of my past, but that wasn’t working with only a few inches to stay atop of.

But I learned. The sex got better. I discovered that the rocking, grinding motion I had to adapt to to stay penetrated by this smaller penis led to amazing friction on my clit. No, I couldn’t do aerobic pornstar sex moves anymore but this newfound closeness, sliding our bodies together, grasping and pressing close, was amazing. I had my first orgasms during intercourse with this man and his small penis.
And he never apologized or flinched. Neither of us ever referred to it as a “small” penis, or otherwise. And we both shared many, many orgasms pressed tightly together...
One more comment along similar lines:
I have had micro and a guy who would make a horse jealous. I prefer the micro because well I have tiny ladybits.
The horse whipped his pants off, stood there like a porn star and said "personal lollipop". Couldn't blow him, my poor jaw. Sex, omg. I died. It felt like my cervix was being punched repeatedly, we had to stop.
I eventually kicked him out. Never again.
Micro guy? Dude knew how to use it, his hands, and his tongue.
Best sex ever, too bad we live cities apart.
Tl;dr: guys with big dicks can gtfo of my bedroom, small dicks are preference.
And as Amy Muise says in Supersize Me: Does Penis Size Matter to Women?...
Researchers have also explored how women feel about their partner’s penis size. Most women rated their partner’s penis size as average (67%), about a quarter rated their partner’s penis as large (27%), and a few women rated their partner’s penis as small (6%).
Importantly, the vast majority of women were satisfied with their partner’s penis size (84%), and this was a significantly higher percentage than the number of men who were satisfied with their own penis size (55%). Only 14% of women wanted their partner’s penis to be larger, and, in fact, 2% wanted their partner’s penis to be smaller.
[Data from: Lever, J., Frederick, D. A., & Peplau, L. A. (2006). Does size matter? Men’s and women’s views on penis size across the lifespan.Psychology of Men & Masculinity, 7, 129-143.]

Following up on the 2% who wanted their partner's penises to be smaller:  the charts tell us that the largest 2% are the men with penises more than 16.5cm (6.5 inches) long.

When men are surveyed, about 1.5-2% also typically wish their penises were smaller. Again, that almost certainly includes a substantial portion of the men with penises that are longer than 6.5 inches, plus probably a significant number of men who have very girthy penises as well, and it confirms what women are saying:  if a man is in other ways attractive and skillful, he is much more likely to be refused sex or to have his girlfriend break up with him because his penis is too large than because it is too small.

One guy put it this way:
I'm a big guy, girth and length, I'm nearly 40 now and to be honest its been a bit of a 'pain in the arse'. I'd say 40% of the women I've slept with have been uncomfortable with it or asked me to take it out! 
I used to play a high level of amateur soccer and would shower with team mates and got the unfortunate nickname 'horse'. I still get it now and it's difficult when my kids ask why they call me that, the usual answer is because I work on a farm. It also limits what me and my wife do in the bedroom, a lot of new positions are painful to her, and oral sex is pointless. A big cock isn't a bed of roses!
These personal accounts fit well with other data, as my interviews and many other sources suggest that there is a noticeable decline in female sexual satisfaction as penis size increases beyond an actual 17cm, or 6.7 inches.  (Keep in mind that most women in the U.S. will describe a 17-19cm penis as being 8 or 9 inches long.)

As one woman put it:
My experience with big penises is that guys think that their junk is all they need to bring to the party. It's like expecting that owning a Stradivarius will make you a master violinist. No, it won't.
This mirrors the many reports that suggest that men with shorter penises often make more of an effort to satisfy their partners, perhaps in compensation for their self-perceived physical shortcomings.

I have seen similar results in my own research.  The women I interviewed were all in successful long-term relationships with good, passionate sex.  As one would expect from that, none of them indicated any problems related to penis size with their current partners. Most had had prior experience with men with larger and smaller penises, and in all cases they thought their husbands/partners were "just right."


Three of the women had had previous encounters with unusually well-hung guys.  Their reactions were identical on two points:  

A) Deep, hard penetration hurts if the penis is too long.

B) All three guys were poor lovers who seemed to count on their physical endowment to make up for their lack of skill.

Another women said that her husband's penis is "an honest 8 inches," at least 50% longer than her first boyfriend's penis.  She said she found the extra length scary at first, and she echoed the other comments about the need to avoid hard, deep thrusting.  But she did say she enjoyed handling the extra length when giving a lingam massage and she said that it made some positions possible that she and the first boyfriend had never been able to do properly.

She's a big woman, 6' tall and athletic, and her husband is even bigger and heavier.  He's a retired NFL lineman, so having the extra few inches gives him an additional bit of reach in positions where the extra padding on their butts and thighs creates a good deal of pelvic separation.  And, obviously, they avoid the positions that allow for the deepest penetration.

Several of the men were in the 4-4.5" range and none of their partners had any problem with that, even though all of the women had previously dated guys whose penises were substantially longer.  The typical comment was that guys who are less built try harder and learn to be more thoughtful and skillful lovers.  The only comments I heard about wishing a penis were larger were from two women who thought it would help their men to feel less sensitive about size.

A final point on length:  vaginas also vary in length.  They all become longer as a woman becomes aroused, but the maximum does vary quite a lot from one woman to the next.

Some women can accommodate a 7" penis or longer without pain, especially if they are completely aroused.  But many women cannot, so people who are sexually active do a certain amount of size-matching by trial and error as couples get together and find out if they fit with each other.  Women with shorter vaginas tend to prefer men with penises that are small to average, while women with more generous dimensions tend to select men with penises that are average or larger.


The average width of the erect penis, using laboratory measurements (NOT self-reporting) is typically around 39mm, or 1.5 inches.  The average circumference is around 117mm, or 4.6 inches.  (It's not quite 1.5 * π, or ~4.7" because a normal penis is a flattened cylinder.)

Here's the nomogram showing the distribution of measured circumferences.  (Note: the circumference is misleadingly called "length" in the left margin.)


Guys, if you want to measure yourself, use a tape measure or strip of paper and wrap it around the widest part of the shaft when you have a full erection.  If you use a strip of paper, use a pen to mark the point of overlap, then unroll the paper and measure to that point with a ruler.

Women quoted in the media commonly say that girth is more important than length, but that's misleading.

Most women simply don't care, but some women have larger vaginas and poor vaginal muscle tone, and they have a strong preference for girthy cocks.  So when reporters are looking for quotes, the only women who really care are those who prefer more girth.  Those are the voices that get heard and remembered, even though most women don't share that preference.

I have found that there are four major exceptions to the supposed preference for girth:
  • Muscle tone:  Women with good Kegel tone (100% of my sample) say they have no preference for a large girth.  Since their PC muscles aren't flabby, the vaginal opening contracts naturally and completely around any size shaft, so they don't need a wide cock to fill up extra space.
  • Oral:  Oral sex is much harder with a large diameter penis, and deep-throating may be impossible.  Women complained of getting painful jaw cramps and having problems breathing and managing saliva with wider penises.  Wide guys typically have a lot more problems getting BJs.
  • Anal:  Most women who like anal sex prefer guys with slimmer penises. Conversely, a guy with a lot of girth will typically find it a lot harder to convince a woman to have anal with him, and he will have a much harder time not hurting her even if she agrees to try it.
  • Menopause:  After menopause, many women experience shrinkage and loss of elasticity in the vaginal area.  The limit varies, but the post-menopausal women I've talked to say that anything more than around 5" in circumference can cause major pain unless they get a lot of foreplay and are well-lubed and completely warmed up before penetration.  A 6" circumference may make vaginal sex impossible after menopause, even in the best of circumstances.  What's worse, there's no reliable way to tell in advance which women are going to end up in this situation!
Overall, I interviewed 59 women.  Some of them wished their guys were less girthy.  Not one wished for greater girth.

Advice for Women

He's too long for me; full penetration really hurts.

First, you need to lay down the law: his penis isn't allowed in until you are FULLY aroused. No quickies.  No "I'm still dry, so use a whole lot of lube."  If he's so proud of his cock that he thinks he doesn't need to do anything else for you, or if he just won't take the time to get you completely hot, then seriously consider kicking him out of your bed.  It's not going to get any better if he's not willing to try.

If you are so badly mismatched on size that deep penetration hurts even when you're completely ready – like you've already had an orgasm and you're aching for another one! – then you need to avoid the positions that allow deep penetration.  For many couples, that means a ban on doggie-style and on most variants of missionary and cowgirl.

However, many couples have found that they can manage even those positions if the man is careful to adjust his entry angle to point more forward or rearward, so he misses the cervix completely.

For example, if you put a thick cushion or stack of pillows under your butt in missionary and he keeps his hips low and angles his penis up toward your g-spot, the head of his penis will slide right into your anterior fornix, above your cervix.   You get more g-spot stimulation AND some extra pleasure from the fornix stretching, and there's no harm to the cervix.

Or you can skip the cushions, extend your legs flat, and have him slide forward a bit on top of you so his penis is angled downward, pointing toward the mattress.  The tip will slide into your posterior fornix, which is behind your cervix and is deeper than the anterior fornix.  Check the images below to see what the internal anatomy looks like:

The ring of open space around the cervix is called the fornix.  [Source]

When a woman is fully aroused, her uterus ascends into the abdomen and the inner end of her vagina opens out to create a much larger potential diameter than the opening, a process called "tenting."  [Source]

In the doggie position, you can put your chest down and push your abdomen down toward the bed to aim his penis at your posterior fornix, or you can rotate your hips the other way by balancing on your outstretched arms and arching your back upward to aim his penis more at your anterior fornix.  Alternatively, he can position himself more on top of you, so his penis is pointing downward, and it will do the same thing.

In cowgirl, you can move your whole body an inch or so either forward or backward from your usual spot before settling all the way down on him.  Or if you prefer to do semi-cowgirl, leaning forward with your hands on the bed or on his chest or biceps, slide backward an inch from the normal point before you settle down.  That will angle his penis into your posterior fornix.

There are lots of other possibilities as long as he doesn't aim his penis straight up the middle!

If even that doesn't work, try this:  Buy a dense foam disk, ring, or doughnut that is about an inch thick.  (Try the puppy chew toys at a pet store.)  If there's no hole, or the hole is too small, cut one that is just big enough for his penis.  Then have him wear it as a cock ring.  It will cushion the impact when he thrusts hard and it will keep him from going so deep.  As a bonus, the disk itself can create additional friction and pressure on your clit.

Edit:  A reader whose boyfriend measures 8" thoughtfully pointed out that you can buy jelly doughnut-style silicone cock rings on Amazon.  They aren't as thick as the doggie chew toys, but they are smoother, more comfortable, and much stretchier, so you won't have to struggle to create the right fit.

The Big O Silicone Donut:

She makes her boyfriend stack three at a time on his penis to get the necessary thickness, and because if there's only one it tends to slide or roll backward a bit with each thrust.

Come Close protector rings from the UK are specifically designed to help with this problem.

He's too thick for me; all kinds of penetration really hurt.

See the first paragraph in the section just above this.  He needs to get you completely aroused first.  Every.  Single.  Time.  No exceptions!

On top of that, a man with a thick penis needs to use a LOT of lube and to be very patient about penetration.  Your vaginal entrance may be able to stretch enough to let him in, but it takes time.  If he rushes it, it's going to hurt you, and the pain – and soon, just the anticipation of the pain – will cause you to tighten up, which is just the opposite of what you need.

One of my tantra interviewees has this problem, and his wife laid down the law early on:  no penetration without at least three orgasms for her first.  He can use fingers, oral, a vibrator, or a combination, but she's learned that it takes that much time and stimulation for her to get completely aroused and ready for him, and even then he has to go slow at the start of penetration.  (They've been together for almost twenty years, and this still works for them. She's just praying she doesn't shrink too much when she gets to menopause.)

You can help by doing Kegel exercises, including "reverse Kegels."  Most people do Kegels to strengthen the pelvic floor (the PC or Kegel muscles), but Kegel exercises consist of clenching and relaxing those muscles repeatedly.  By concentrating on the relaxation part, you can learn to consciously relax those muscles when you need to.  You might also want to try learning progressive muscle relaxation.

Also, really pay attention and keep track of what positions help you open wider.  For most women, that involves being bent at the hips with your knees wide apart.  In missionary, try raising your knees up toward your body and out to the side.  In cowgirl, kneel with your knees apart and lean more forward if that helps.  Also, cowgirl lets you control the timing, so you can make sure things go slow enough to prevent pain.

If you're still having trouble and you're really determined to make this work, consider getting a set of vaginal dilators.  These are like tapered dildos in graduated sizes, so you can use them to gradually stretch the muscles and get them to relax more on penetration.  It won't make you permanently "loose," but it will enable you to relax and loosen up more when you need to.

Anal follows the same rules, but even more so:  arousal, tons of lube, spread wide, go glacially slow, and do some stretching on your own beforehand.  I recommend lots of practice on your part with anal toys before you even try it.  I also strongly recommend using the FC2 condom for all anal sex, but particularly for anal with guys who are overendowed.

Even if you do everything right, it may be impossible to do it without pain.  If that's the case, say no and stick to it.

Ditto for oral.  If he's just too big for your mouth, don't do it.  Become the goddess of handjobs instead!

You can include a lot of sucking and licking in a fantastic lingam massage without ever taking his penis all the way into your mouth.  Every guy I know who has experienced this prefers it to a plain bj anyway, so why not?

His penis is an inch wide or less; oral and anal are great, but I can barely feel him in my vagina.

This is the best problem to have, because you can solve it completely.  If your guy has a skinny penis, start doing your kegels!  

Buy a Kegel training tool or just use a skinny dildo, your own fingers, or anything about the right size and shape (a skinny bottle, a carrot, an electric toothbrush, even a fat marking pen) and practice squeezing as hard as you can.  At the start, you probably won't be able to feel much.  After several months of Kegeling three times a day, you should be able to do a tight squeeze on two fingers.

In addition, there are also many positions that guys with skinny penises can experiment with, positions that involve unusual angles other men can't do.  Just raising your hips during missionary – put a thick cushion under your butt – will position him so his penis is pointing diagonally up toward your G-spot from the inside, instead of straight back toward your cervix.  One friend who likes this describes it as feeling like her partner is plowing a groove through her G-spot – divine!

Any of the T-shaped positions work well, where your bodies are at right angles.  In cowgirl position, for example, settle on him as you normally would, and then slide forward an inch, sit up straight, and rock or slide your clit on his pubic bone.  Once again, this angles the penis forward and forces the head of the penis against your G-spot.  I promise you'll feel it!

Reverse cowgirl is also great.  Settle down on him and then slide back a little bit toward his chest.  Then lean as far forward as you can without hurting him.  The pressure will be on the back wall of your vagina instead of the front, but that can combine very effectively with some anal fingering from him if that is something you enjoy.  (Putting an FC2 condom in ahead of time makes this much easier and more sanitary.)

For other positions where it isn't as easy to shift forward or back, ask him to shift an inch to one side or to rotate 20-30 degrees to left or right.  So in missionary, he could be lined up with your body, but offset a bit to your right, forcing his penis against the left side of your vagina.  Or he could be turned slightly so he's straddling one of your legs and his head is lined up with your other shoulder.  And again, this creates a nice sideways pressure inside your vaj.

Keeping the penis angled is one solution.  The alternative is to use positions in which your legs are tightly clamped together.  A simple example is doggie style with your thighs together.  If you angle your butt back a bit, he can kneel on either side of your calves and have good access.

That assumes that your heights are right.  If you're too short/he's too tall, you can adjust by kneeling on a small, thick cushion.  Alternatively, you can experiment with kneeling at the edge of the bed, or on a couch or chair, and having him stand behind you with his legs apart.  It's just a matter of finding a place that's comfortable and the right height and that gives you something to hang onto.  (You need a secure grip because, with your knees together, you're going to be much more unstable.)

Another easy variation is missionary, but with your legs tightly together and his legs outside of yours.  This means he enters you from above, so you have a tight entrance AND a steep angle, a double win.  (This is also a good position for a guy with a penis that is too long for comfort. By the same token, it may not work for guys with shorter penises.)

The "pronebone" position is identical, except you are face down instead of face up, and his penis hits your g-spot.  Which one works best depends on many things, including his penis length, as well as how well padded you are and where the padding is located.  (E.g., too much "junk in the trunk" can make pronebone hard to do unless he has a longer-than-average penis.)

His penis is really short – under four inches for real.

In the 3-4" range, you can still have really good vaginal sex.  Just forget about wild in-and-out thrusting.  Find and stick with the positions that allow the closest connection and then concentrate on a rubbing, grinding action that moves your clit on his pubic bone or vice versa.  You're much more likely to have a vaginal orgasm from that kind of sex anyway than you are from conventional thrusting.

A penis sleeve can also work well for some couples, especially if the woman has a larger vagina and/or weak vaginal muscles.

At 2.75" or less, you get into the "micropenis" range.  If he's a terrific guy and he's skillful with his fingers and tongue, you can still have great sex, but vaginal penetration often just isn't going to be worth the effort.  

Start thinking instead about the mechanics of sex the way a lesbian couple would, as if you both have clitorises.  Exchange hand jobs and oral and find ways that you can grind your clit on top of his penis or vice versa.  "Outercourse" will often be more enjoyable for both of you than intercourse.

Vibrators and vaginal toys can add to the pleasure.  For example, you can put a good, strong, egg-style vibrator into your vaj while he's giving you a yoni massage and the combination can blow the top of your head off.

Also experiment with anal toys and vibrators and see if either or both of you like them.  In particular, get a prostate massager and experiment with giving him prostate massages. Many men think a prostate orgasm is more intense than any orgasm from normal sex.

Advice for Men

Your penis is between 4 and 6.5 inches in length.  
No worries, mate.  You've got a "Goldilocks Cock," the size most women prefer.  

Just focus on making it great for her, and she'll think you're a superstar.

You're "well hung" and proud of it.
First, get over the pride.  Penis competition is a guy thing, so leave it in the locker room. Most women either don't care or are going to be concerned or put off by your size.

The moment of surprise and awe when the pants come down the first time will be mixed with a lot trepidation and even some fear.  You need to understand that you will be rejected for sex because of your "package" more often than it will benefit you.

You are going to have to make up for this by being a really good lover.  Be so charming and fun and completely into her that you make it worth her while to go against her better judgment and give you a try.  Learn how to give great handjobs and fantastic head, so she counts the night a success even if she ends up hurting.  Unless she initiates it, don't even think about asking for oral or anal until you're solidly a couple, and then bring it up in a very casual way.

Sometimes, it's just not worth it.  If this is a new relationship, her ladybits are on the small side, and the parts don't fit, it might be better to move on.  As one guy put it:
Having a big dick and romancing a tight woman is like applying to be an Astronaut when you are six feet or taller. Yeah, you're huge, but you're not getting in.
The retired NFL lineman with an 8-incher?  He got turned down and dumped repeatedly by women because of lack of fit until he met his wife.

You are in a relationship, your penis is unusually long, short, thick, or thin, and its size is creating pain or other problems for you and your partner.
Read the appropriate section(s) under the advice for women.  If possible, get your partner to read this whole thing with you.  And do your best to find solutions that work for both of you.  

There is always a physical puzzle to solve when any two people get together for sex.  How you two fit together will depend on height, weight, proportions, disabilities, even the locations where the weight is distributed on your bodies.  Penis size and vagina size are just two of the pieces in that puzzle.

However, there is one thing you can do that is guaranteed to help:  put her pleasure first and put vaginal penetration far down on your priority list.  It's only one way to have sex and not necessarily the best.

Here's one more quote from a memorable on-line discussion about having sex with men with large and small penises.  In this case, the guy was in the sub-3" range:
He guided me to the carpet and proceeded to perform acts of god on my lady region. I believe years of not being able to have conventional sex have given him oral superpowers. I had orgasms too numerous to count and I'm convinced I partially blacked out at one point (before this night, I would have seriously called bullshit on that actually being a thing, but goddamn if it isn't real.)
Long story short, I never did get to see the goods that first night. I remember feeling a little embarrassed the next morning for the amount of thanks and praise I gave him immediately following the last, exhausting orgasm (I'm talking a good 20 minutes worth of "OMFG, you are the most amazing man on Earth" type thing.)
Whether you're too big or too small, if that's the hand that nature dealt you, then own it and be that guy.  

If you make being with you fantastic and not being with you unthinkable for your partner, she will help you figure out solutions to any problems you two have fitting together.

Summing it Up

If I were going to generalize from this, I would say that most American women would mildly prefer having a lover with a penis that is average to somewhat above-average in length, between 4.5 and 6 inches, and would definitely prefer a penis that is between 4 and 6.5 inches long.

If asked about preferred length in numerical terms, however, they would probably add at least an inch or two to their guesses, since most American women think their current partners' penises are at least an inch or two longer than they really are.

That is, if you ask American women to state their preferences in inches, they would say "6 to 8 inches" or even "7 to 9 inches."  This makes sense if they believe, as most of them do, that an average penis is 7 inches long.  But if you ask them to describe their preference in terms relative to the penis they are most familiar with, most will say "my boyfriend's size is just right."

Shorter or longer penises (and shorter vaginas, too) can require some adjustments during vaginal sex, but they are manageable for most couples.

Most women who like giving oral and/or receiving anal have a definite preference for an average or narrow penis, one with a 5" circumference or less, while women with poor muscle tone in the vaginal area typically prefer a wider one.

However, it's important to put all of this in context, because women's preferences on penis size, except in really extreme cases, are typically very mild. Penis size ranks far below considerations like "cares about me," "makes me laugh," "has good oral hygiene," "is confident," "has good hands," "dresses well," "is smart and well-educated," "smells good," "kisses well," and "gives good head."

So, men...  Instead of worrying about one thing you can't change, you would be much better off working on the many things you can change that are far more important to your current or future partner.  If you approach love and sex with humor, enthusiasm, imagination, confidence, knowledge, skill, awareness of your partner, and a desire to find out what gives her pleasure, you will discover that your physical dimensions will not matter at all.


  1. I want to thank you for this in-depth write-up and research on penis size. It really covers all bases better than any article or blog entry I've ever read. It just shows, whatever the penis size (small, medium, or average) a man is capable of giving a woman a happy, satisfying sex life.

  2. Kudos, this is great research, with scientific data points backing up the assertions unlike what is in 99% of other sites concerning this topic. Clearly you have done your homework. I do have one question - I was wondering if you knew from your findings if girth is independent of length. If there is a correlation, do you happen to know by how much?

    1. I don't know of any statistics on that, but I have a suspicion that the correlation between length and girth will turn out to be roughly around r=.25 to .4.

      The typical correlation between *height* and genital size, for both men and women, seems to be roughly r=.2 to .35 in most studies. In other words, there's a tendency for taller men to have slightly longer &/or thicker penises. (Similarly, taller women are likely to have marginally longer &/or wider vaginal canals.)

      Back to men: If both length and girth correlate somewhat with height, and we assume that all three (length, girth, and height) are influenced by something else that has an effect on growth and development (like nutrition in childhood), then it's likely that length and girth will also correlate somewhat with each other.

      Anyway, until someone comes up with some actual data, that's my best guess! :)

    2. thank you for the cogent reply. That makes a lot of sense now that you bring height into the equation.

  3. The Veale study you repeatedly reference is one of the best publicized, and most worthless, studies on erect penis size there is. Anything in this article based on that studies erect length results is correspondingly tainted. Reasoning:

    First, the 15k number is irrelevant, because the erect length measurements only come from 4 studies with a total of 692 participants. (Erect girth numbers are from 2 studies totaling 381 participants). Saying 15k gives this meta-study far more credit than it deserves.

    Second, one of the erect length studies (200 participants) has a mean of 12.73cm with an SD of 0.11cm for erect penile length. The largest penis in that study was 17cm long, giving it a Z-score of 38. To put in perspective how large a Z-score that is, I can't use 64-bit Excel to calculate the "Biggest in a room of N" number for that because excel can't handle numbers that large. Basically they are saying a 6" penis is so statistically unlikely that not a single one should exist anywhere world today. I can look down and see that is not the case. Despite this blatantly obvious issue VEALE INCLUDED THIS CRAP IN THEIR RESULTS.

    Third, of the four erect length studies used, two of them (280 participants total) measured from the pubo-penile junction (where penis meets torso) to the tip of the penis. This is commonly called Non-Bone Pressed Erect Length, or NBPEL. The other two studies (421 participants total) measured from the same place, but pressed the ruler against the bone at that point (which adds about 1.5cm, or about 0.6" on average) . This is commonly called Bone Pressed Erect Length, or BPEL. So Veale is mixing results that measured two ENTIRELY DIFFERENT THINGS.

    It would be like if you measured the height of American men from the ground to the bridge of their nose and got 5'5" as their average, then measured Japanese men from the ground to the top of their head and got 5'5" as their average, and said therefore that the average height of human males if 5'5". Sorry, but you can't just measure different things, jumble them together, and call it good.

    I know this because I have a copy of all these studies except Sengezer (the 0.11 SD one, but statements from others who have read it make it clear it used NBPEL) and these things are made VERY clear in the studies themselves.

    If Veale et. al. can't get basic and obvious things like this right I shudder to think what else they screwed up throughout their meta-study.

    1. Muffler, I appreciate your input and your passion, but I don't agree that the results are off. Meta studies are always subject to criticism because they try to combine many limited and imperfect studies and discover a greater truth. If done properly, they can compensate for many of the shortcomings, like the ones you pointed out.

      The essential point is that, assuming the meta-study is done correctly, the biases and errors in the small studies tend to cancel each other out. And, indeed, that seems to be the case here. The authors actually went to considerable lengths (sorry!) to adjust for the different clinical protocols.

      The fact remains that this is the best data we have, and it seems to fit well with clinical experience. I've discussed the results of this study with two well-known urologists, one of whom is a professor emeritus at a top med school. They each see and handle far more penises in a year than most people see in a lifetime, and they both agree that 5-5.5" (127-140mm) is the center of the range, and that the overwhelming majority are between 4" and 6.5" (100-165mm).

      Because they see men for UTIs, ED, and all sorts of other problems that are independent of length, their sample is probably quite random. They don't routinely see as many erections, but they do confirm that stretched length is a reasonably accurate proxy for BPEL.

      So until I see convincing data to the contrary, I'm going to go with what we have here.

    2. My penis is 6 inches long NBP (without pressing the ruler against my pubic bone) and my girlfriend said it's huge. Do you think she was saying the truth?

  4. I commented previously to explain that sometimes my statistically very large penis is not helpful, but that sometimes it definitely is. The comment was removed. Does experience count for nothing?

    1. As you can imagine, this article attracts a LOT of spam comments for penis pills and creams. However, I've looked through all the deleted comments and don't see anything that matches your description. Are you sure you wrote it here, and not in reply to some other article?

  5. Big dicks dominate in porn for one, and only one reason. It makes it easier to film actual penetration at any position. Men and women shaving down there also makes thing cleaner, and simpler to make a good shot orally and vaginally

  6. You see, according to recent studies, 80% of women want their man larger. The problem is that most men don't measure up! If you weren't born with a larger endowment, then the only thing you can do is naturally increase your size. But now the question is: What works best to get bigger, and why do women prefer bigger? Read More Here