Mr. Measuring Stick: Does Size Matter?

Dear Sexpert,

I’ve only recently started watching porn online, and I’ve seen countless advertisements about “guaranteed” ways to make my penis bigger. Also, the guys in the videos are usually longer than I am. I never really questioned my size before watching porn, and I’m starting to feel as if I won’t be able to please my partner if I don’t do something about my penis size. So I’m wondering: does size really matter?   

Thanks in advance,

Mr. Measuring Stick

Dear Mr. Measuring Stick,

Ah…the age old question that has dumbfounded people for decades — “does size matter?” Well, the answer isn’t as clear cut as yes or no. And we shouldn’t be surprised by that, since sex is rarely that simple and is very individual.

First, let’s clear the air about all the “10 tricks to make you grow 3 inches in 5 weeks” and other clickbait advertisements that taunt you as you browse porn sites – they’re a scam. Dr. Brian Christine, a urologist with the Urology Centers of Alabama, says: “There’s nothing topical you can put on your penis that will make it grow longer…same goes for pills—it’s a complete waste of money.” You’ll see these products marketed with penis-boosting vitamins, minerals, herbs, or hormones, but no controlled studies have shown they’ll provide any benefit. In fact some products might even produce harmful effects. For example, certain toys like cock rings or devices like penis pumps can increase the size of an erection minimally and temporarily. But using them for an extended period of time or producing great swelling can result in discomfort, bruising and even damage to penile tissue.

In fact, the constant debate over penis size can be traced to a deeper issue that permeates throughout our everyday language and popular media, such as music, TV shows, and movies. Often, the size and length of someone’s penis is linked to how powerful or successful someone is, or size comparisons are used to make others feel “less than”. We always hear that people believe that “bigger is better,” (from candy bars to body parts) and that leads to a horrible cycle of competition, where size-enhancing tips and tricks start to become appealing. But, truth is, your penis size doesn’t determine your sexual performance, or your overall worth. Also, odds are, you’re probably doing alright in the size department. The average penis measures somewhere between 3 and 5 inches when flaccid or not erect, and between 5 and 7 inches when erect.

So what DOES matter? Your confidence! And how you are respectful and attentive with your partner(s). If you’re still a little shy about your little guy, focus more on what you can do with your partner that doesn’t involve a penis. You can practice the craft of foreplay and oral sex, or forms of intimacy that don’t involve sex. There are many ways to please your partner without having a long penis. Size makes no difference at all as long as you and your partner are openly communicating, and happy and comfortable. That said, there are some ways to make your love muscle flex a little harder. If you’re hung up on size, trimming your pubic hair might make your penis appear larger and it may even increase sensitivity around the base of your penis. If you’re into that, be careful to avoid nicks and razor burn, which can increase risk of sexually transmitted infections (STI) transmission or a less-than pleasurable experience for you.

So, Mr. Measuring Stick, do not fear! The porn industry may feed you lies that claim size to be the end all be all of sexual happiness, but there’s so much more to it than a number on a ruler. So don’t be shy, and make the best of what you got!

Information about penis size retrieved from Men’s Journal, Healthline, Mayo Clinic and Zavamed.