Does Penis Size Matter?
We’ll never know how many men get out of a measuring tape, but we do know that most men worry about the size of their penis. Two of the most common Google searches about sex are “how to make my penis bigger manually” and “how to measure my penis.” In one study of 200 men, 68% said penis size was one of their concerns about their bodies.
Understandably, men might be concerned about their size - especially in this era of instant access to pornography - but we promise that adult film stars do not represent the average man. Even better, they don’t mean what women seek in a partner.
How Big is the Average Penis?
In general, penises are smaller than we’ve been led to believe by porn and our general pop culture obsession with all things phallic. The average penis is just about 13 cm (5 inches) long.
A review of years of research studies that included a total of more than 15,500 men from around the world found that when flaccid (soft), the average penis is about 9.16 cm (or 3.61 inches) long. Once it gets hard, the average penis is 13.12 cm (or 5.16 inches) long. For reference, your smartphone is probably longer than that.
The width/girth of an average penis is 9.31 cm (3.66 inches) when flaccid and 11.66 (4.59 inches) when erect. This might sound big because you measure all around, but picture a banana. There’s a reason people are constantly comparing penises to our favorite breakfast fruit; a medium-sized banana is a similar length and just a little bit narrower.
No one wants to consider themselves average, but it should be reassuring. There is a lot of variation in the exact size and even shape of penises, but very few people have the enormous members you read about in romance novels. If you put 100 men in a room, only five would have a penis larger than 16 cm (6.2 inches).
What Size Penis Do Women Want?
One study gave women a bunch of 3-D erect penis models (33) and asked them to choose their ideal penis size for a long-term partner. The winner was a 16 cm penis (6.3 inches) long with a width of 12.2 cm (4.8 inches).
That’s slightly longer than average, which should also be reassuring. Women are not looking for huge, snake-like penises.
Research suggests that women care more about the width of a penis than its length because this is what they can feel during intercourse. A wider penis can stretch the vagina more and be more likely to rub the clitoris as you thrust in and out (depending on position).
Most women need clitoral stimulation to orgasm, but it doesn’t have to come from the penis; you can use your hand, hers, or find the perfect sex toy to have up against her clitoral area during sex.
What Matters More Than Penis Size?
It’s safe to say that at the end of the night (or around brunch time if you’re into morning sex), most things about your experience will have been more important than the size of your penis. The setting, the mood, the flirting before, the foreplay, the speed, the intensity, the orgasms (yours and hers), and the pillow talk afterward will likely be more significant factors in whether everyone goes home happy and satiated.
Instead of worrying about what you cannot change—because despite what late-night television commercials and sketchy websites claim, there’s very little you can do about the size of your penis—pay attention to what you can do to make sex great.
Good sex is about much more than genitals. Give her a sensual massage, go down on her before intercourse, use your fingers to touch her clitoris during sex, or add a sex toy or two for more play. Focus on mutual pleasure, and we bet any concerns about size will be quickly forgotten.
The most important thing, however, is your attitude. Stress and anxiety put a damper on good sex. Worrying about how you measure up can distract you from what makes you feel good. Penis size does not affect premature ejaculation, for example, but stress and anxiety can make you climax too soon (or not at all).
If you are worried about the size of your penis, consider sharing your concerns with your partner. It may feel embarrassing, but good communication always makes sex better, and we have a feeling that you’ll leave that conversation feeling anything but average.
Does Penis Size Matter?
Did you know that larger penises were not always valued in society? These days, we think of a big penis as a sign of manliness that goes along with bravery and toughness, but people had different opinions at other times in history. If you shrank Michelangelo’s famous Statue of David—which he sculpted in 1501—down to the size of a typical man, his penis would only be 4.97 centimeters (or 1.96 inches). That’s because, in his day, big penises were associated with foolish behavior, and those with smaller penises were thought to be more intellectual and rational.
So don’t be sucked in by the idea that bigger is better. Focus more on the emotional connection between you and your partner and the enjoyment of your shared sexual experiences.
This article is for informational purposes only and does not constitute medical or professional advice, nor shall be considered, used, or relied upon as a substitute for professional medical advice. You should always consult with your physician about any health-related condition, as well as risks and benefits of any treatment.