Before I, ahem, unpack that last part, a little explainer on why guys love to share snaps of their johnson: "I think showing his penis is more likely to excite him than it is to excite you," says sociologist Pepper Schwartz , PhD, a professor of human sexuality at the University of Washington.

Most men are enamored by their genitals and get a thrill out of thinking you will be, too, she explains.

Still, some women (myself included, btw) can be totally turned on by a dick pic-if (and only if) it meets a few general standards.

So, in the hopes of saving you from yet another "OMG, why" moment of horror, here, without further delay, the official rules for sending dick pics. Feel free to share as you see fit.

1. Make sure your dick pic is 100-percent solicited. If not, DO NOT PASS GO.

Before even taking a dick pic, you absolutely must make sure the person you're hoping to send it to wants to see it. "Receiving an unwanted dick pic feels really awful, even violating," says Vanessa Marin , a licensed psychotherapist who specializes in sex therapy.

To find out if your potential recipient is open to dick pics, just be super straight-up and ask her. One slightly less scary way to do it: Ask if she'd like to exchange sexy pictures. "If she's into sending one of herself, ask her if you can return the favor," Marin says.

Of course, wait for her to respond with an emphatic yes (or the emoji equivalent).

Modern dating making you face-palm? All your Qs, answered:

2. Outweigh the pros and cons of sending a dick pic.

Okay, so a current or prospective partner says she's DTR (down to receive). Now it's time to consider whether sending her a dick pic is actually worth the risk.

Having a son herself, Schwartz cautions against sending dick pics because the recipient could easily share it with others or use it against you in the future.

But three things can ease that concern:

  • Only sending dick pics to a partner you fully trust (like, you know, a girlfriend).
  • Keeping your face and other identifying features out of the frame.
  • Asking the recipient why they want a dick pic (don't offer suggestions-let them answer honestly). If they don't sound legit excited by the idea, maybe keep the intimate images to yourself.

Marin notes that most women aren't particularly excited by dick pics. "The ones that like them tend to be more entertained by them than actually sexually stimulated," she says.

So ask yourself, "Am I confident that my partner will genuinely enjoy this?" If not, perhaps stick to flirty dirty talk.

3. Wait for the right time to send your dick pic.

On that note, flirty dirty talk should always precede the sending of a dick pic.

"A nude picture is definitely more intense than just chatting back and forth about sexy things," says Marin. "If you jump to that extreme too quickly, it can be super jarring and not actually erotic."

For the best reaction from your recipient, have at least a foundation of basic sexting (via text or email) before taking it to the next level .

You also don't want to catch her at the wrong moment (like, ya know, when she's in the elevator with her boss). So save the dick pic for evenings and weekends, when she's more likely to be alone.

Bonus points if you time it for when she's relaxed and more in her body than her head, like right after a shower or while she's nursing a glass of wine.

Also, this should go without saying, but just in case: Wait until you have a full erection. That's a hard rule (pun intended).

4. Make it selective and tasteful.

"In general, the more blank the background, the better," says Marin. That's because a dick pic is already challenging enough to take seriously, so any extra competition in the photo isn't going to do you any favors, she explains.

That counts not only for the pile of laundry on your floor or the dirty bathroom mirror, but also your adorable dog, unmade bed, and half-empty (half-full?) beer can.

"Women can also tell when you're being lazy with your picture," Marin adds. "Don't just pull your pants down and point your camera at your erection. Experiment with angles for the best light and real appeal, just like you would a regular selfie."

Hear that? Play with your dick (pic).

5. Consider adding your hand to the dick pic.

I think-as does Marin-that most women can agree on the fact that a penis by itself isn't the most attractive thing in the world. What makes a man's member a turn-on is that it belongs to a person they find attractive.

So do yourself a favor and remind your recipient that this D is yours (and hopefully, soon to be theirs) by holding it in your hand or touching it in some way. Not only are you taking ownership of an otherwise random body part, says Marin, but you're also reminding your recipient that there's more to your package deal than just your package.

(Also, FWIW, there's nothing hotter than a guy who's good with his hands.)

6. Throw in some **personal** sexy talk.

It's slightly unreasonable to expect a dude to take a brand new dick pic every time he wants to send one to a willing lady. (The handful of women I chatted with for purposes of this story admitted to saving tried-and-true nudes for future use, too, after all.)

That said, a little heartfelt personalization with a dick pic can go a long way. So when sending a picture, include a text (or in the case of Snapchat, a caption) that shows that your erect status is in direct response or direct anticipation of your recipient's excitement.

If you can reference something you've talked about in the past, or a sexy memory, that's even better, Marin says.

Don't go OTT-keep it classy. For example: "Just thinking about you in your red lacy bra and look what you've done to me."

7. Don't get cocky with your dick pic.

There is nothing-I repeat, nothing-worse in the bedroom than being faked out of a good penis by a deceiving dick pic.

So guys, a word of advice: Especially if you're trying to sleep with this person, do not oversell what you're working with. "A pleasant surprise is way better than disappointment," Marin confirms.

That means no angles that make you look twice as large as you actually are, no loose hand grips that feign thickness (yes, I know that trick), and absolutely no catdicking (showing off someone else's penis and calling it yours).

And if you are on the Magnum side of things, please skip the props (rulers, stacked soda cans, etc.) to let us know.

Women can tell...and humility is way hotter than any dick pic itself.