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95% of Women Have Masturbated, Study Finds

95% of Women Have Masturbated, Study FindsWhat is masturbation like for women? A team of researchers decided to find out.

They asked 425 German women between the ages of 15 and 58 to take part in an online survey. The participants’ average age was 26 years and 61% were in committed relationships.

Here are some of the key findings from the May 2019 Journal of Sexual Medicine report:

  • How often did women masturbate? Ninety-five percent said they had masturbated at least once in their lives, and over half said they did it one to three times a week.
  • When did they start? On average, the women started masturbating when they were around 14 years old.  
  • How do relationships affect masturbation? About 92% of the respondents still masturbated when they were in a relationship, although two-thirds said they did so less frequently when they had a regular sex partner. Single women were more likely to masturbate than partnered women.
  • Why did they masturbate? The top reasons were “sexual satisfaction,” “when I feel sexual desire,” and “to relax.” For almost a quarter of the women, masturbation was a stress reduction technique.
  • Why didn’t women masturbate? Women who hadn’t masturbated often said they didn’t feel much sexual desire and considered sex to be a “partner-only thing/experience.”
  • How did they masturbate? The most common “style” included both clitoral and vaginal stimulation. Seventy-seven percent lay on their back, and 42% fantasized about their partner during masturbation.

To learn more about masturbation, please see these articles:

Women and Masturbation
What Should Men Know About Masturbation?


The Journal of Sexual Medicine
Burri, Andrea, PhD and Ana Carvalheira, PhD
“Masturbatory Behavior in a Population Sample of German Women”
(Full-text. May 30, 2019)