A beginner's guide to sexting

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Dick pics not included.

Sexting can either transform your relationship with your person of interest or make things really awkward if you don’t know what you're doing. There’s a small percentage of people who are gifted when it comes to sexual innuendo, but it’s never too late to learn the alluring art of sexting.

Before you can become a sex-master behind the phone, it's important to know what separates regular texting from sexting. Sexting entails the sending of explicit photographs and messages via text or social media messaging, but that definition doesn’t capture the full extent on how to really get dirty in the DM. 

The ever-reliable Urban Dictionary provides us with a more entertaining view of the matter:

Sexting is the act of sending sexually explicit text messages back and forth with a partner. Essentially, it's like trying to watch pornography on a dial up internet connection. 5 seconds of gratification for every 5 minutes you wait.

While Urban Dictionary interprets sexting as old-school porn, steamy messaging is far from just waxing nostalgic for the days of AOL and Hammer Pants. Sexting is personal a personal experience and is a great way essentially pre-game the real deal. If you feel like you and your bae are at that point where sexting sounds like a nice way to pass the time, here are a few tips on how to make the most of it.


1) Make sure you're sending it to the right person

You could be this girl and ask your mom if she likes your tits. It doesn’t take long to check who you’re messaging with, so do so before you send anything raunchy.

2) Turn off iMessage

Here’s another pre-sexting ritual: Disabling read receipts for iMessage removes the anxiety that comes with wondering whether the other person has read your text. This is the typical game of playing hard to get, leaving your sexting partner eager to receive that next sext.

3) Initiate

If you already have a trusted partner, or if you are confident in your new courtship, don't be afraid to start the conversation. 

4) Be confident

Half-assedness—unless you’re half-ass naked—translates as a clear message of uninterest across text. If you’re going to do it, do it right. Confident sexting is a way to put enough distance between yourself and your partner to decrease self-consciousness while still sharing a fantasy. 

5) Employ humor

Turning a conversation into a private joke or making fun of an awkward moment during sexting in a friendly way can help foster closeness. It provides a sense of comfort and freedom to act natural, and sexting can take on a new level in that type of open environment.

6) Set the scene

Describing what you want somebody to do to you is hot. Set the mood with something titillatingly open-ended, such as "I thought of something I want to do to you tonight" or "I just got out of the shower." 

8) Be gradual

Gradually ease into the scenario. Believe it or not, sexting can lead to real-life sex. If you want to see that person bent over something other than a phone keyboard, a steady drip of innuendo is less in-your-face than an explosion of XXX material from the start. Pun intended.

9) Use emoji effectively

Millennials have taken the use of emoji to new creative heights. Peaches, eggplants, surfboards, hand gestures—a lot can be conveyed in these nifty little images. Here are some of the basics of emoji sexting to keep in mind:

The peach represents booty, bottoms, butts, or whatever you call those two cheeks behind you. It’s the great unifier of sexting. Everyone has a peach. The eggplant has come to be the symbol for the penis, but some very honest men have been known to use the shrimp 🍤  in the interest of accuracy. Tacos represent the vagina, though there is a small movement underway to change that to the honey pot 🍯.

10) Be realistic

One of the beautiful things about sexting is that it's a fantasy. No one is actually lying around in their sexy underpants with nothing else on. She's probably in her period underwear eating Doritos and cleaning the kitchen. Unless of course, it’s a guy who’s wearing the underwear. Then it might actually be true.

11) Delete. Delete. Delete.

Don’t keep messages in your phone longer than the conversation lasts. Screenshot and Dropbox it if you want to, but try not to clog your inbox with freaky exchanges. You never know who could hack into your account.


12)  Don't Send unsolicited dick pics

A dick pic popping up on your phone while you’re at lunch with grandma or doing pilates at the gym is generally unappreciated. Unless they ask for it, guys, assume that dick pics are not a valued currency. Unless the conversation was already leading in a sexual direction, or you’re texting your significant other, a vivid sexual photo out of the blue should be out of the question.

13) Don't sext if you're the only one who's drunk

The best scenario is to start off somewhere between sober and tipsy, but if you're going to text drunk, then make sure your partner is too. While it may seem tempting to fire off some horny, desperate texts when it’s 2am and you’re wasted, remember that alcohol lowers the bar for embarrassing yourself significantly. 

14) Don't misspell words or use too many abbreviations

Nobody expects perfect grammar or a spelling bee champion, but sounding like an 11-year-old who's still stuck on AIM can kill the mood. For example, dont say, “I want 2 fuck ur tite pu$y.” (That should pretty much go without saying, but you get the point.) You don’t have to be a wordsmith, but words leave more room for fantasies than visuals, and a grammatically correct bedroom description can provide some serious titillation. Also, just don’t text with Siri, she probably won’t respond well.

15) Don't put your face in the photo

As they say, “No face, no case.” This general guideline includes any distinguishing tattoos, logos, room decorations, or pieces of clothing. Spare yourself (and future employers) the embarrassment of having angry exes blasting your boudoir photos all over the internet. There is already an unfortunate amount of revenge porn in this country. While it is advisable to avoid sending nudes altogether, make sure to keep your face out of it if you’re going to go that route.

16) Don't use Facetime

On the same note, it is also wise to not enact Yo Gotti's words of wisdom: "Facetime me that pussy." 

With great power comes great responsibility. Now that you’ve leveled up your sexting skills, smut away safely.

Additional reporting by Kristen Hubby

Editor's note: This article is updated regularly for relevance. 

A beginner's guide to sexting with emoji
If you’ve never received a emoji sext, it can be a confusing experience. Why is this person I have a crush on sending me a peach getting smacked? What does that have to do with getting funky? Here’s the thing: Sexting with emoji, if you’re good at it, is about storytelling. There’s already something inherently funny about using a cartoon of an eggplant to try and get laid. Embrace that bizarre fact, and you’ll be good.
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