Finally, some sex tips you haven’t heard a million times before.
Craving a little extra excitement in the bedroom? (Who isn’t? 😘)
Below, sex therapists share the go-to advice they give couples looking to take their sex lives to the next level.
1. DON'T RUSH TO ORGASM
“Too often people try to force themselves to orgasm or rush to have an orgasm that would be more satisfying if they built to it slowly. While there’s nothing wrong with a quick encounter, try building to a slow burn and realize you don’t both have to come at the same time, as long as you both enjoy what you are doing and stay connected. Pace yourselves, build slowly to orgasms and play off each other. It’s OK and even good to build excitement, slow down and build it back up. Lower and raise the intensity until you choose to let go and have an orgasm.” ― Gracie Landes, a sex therapist and marriage and family therapist in New York City
2. REMEMBER THAT YOUR BED IS FOR TWO THINGS: SLEEPING AND SEX
“I always tell my clients that their bedroom should be reserved for two things: sleep and sex. To that end, the bedroom should be a no-tech zone. It’s pretty hard to reach over and cuddle when your partner is exploring Instagram rather than your body. If you need some entertainment, an X-rated movie might lay the groundwork for a super hot night of sex. So could turning on a candle and reading each other some erotica ― I’m sure eventually you can find even better entertainment under the sheets.” ― Anna Randall, a sex therapist and sex researcher in San Francisco, California
3. TRY TO EMBRACE YOUR BODY
“I work with a lot of women and men who over time, feel personally challenged by the changes in how their bodies look and feel. Sexy is a state of mind, regardless of your age or size. So often, we can turn ourselves off, long before our partner even enters the bedroom. Embrace your sexy. Your energy absolutely affects your partner. Find the tools in your personal toolbox to turn yourself on, whether it’s what you wear, the smile on your face, the relaxation you feel when you light your favorite candle. We all have a responsibility and opportunity to embrace our inner sexy. Do it and I promise, you’ll reap the rewards in the bedroom.” ― Megan Fleming, a psychologist and sex therapist in New York City
4. WATCH EACH OTHER MASTURBATE
“Who knows your erotic response better than you? Does your S.O. know the special little sensation that trips your switch? Let them in on the secret. Make yourself comfortable next to your partner and take turns watching as you pleasure yourself to orgasm. It’s fascinating and can be incredibly intimate. Trust me, watching how a man brings himself to orgasm could be possibly one of the most educational and hot things you ever do. Snuggle down between his legs and watch. And for those of you with a clitoris, take your partners hand in yours and guide it back and forth with just the right pressure and on that perfect spot. Have them hold you and feel you rhythmically rock your hips against your favorite pillow while it’s tucked deeply between your thighs. Whatever works for you, show your S.O. When you’re done, cuddle up and share what you learned. Maybe you felt a little embarrassed or surprised but you just upped the intimacy factor in your sex life.” ― Anna Randall
5. SUSTAIN EYE CONTACT FOR TWO WHOLE MINUTES
“I’m not talking about a glance, I mean a true gaze. Gazing into your S.O.’s eyes can actually activate arousal and foster intimacy. I’ve witnessed the power of the gaze in my office thousands of times. For many couples, it is an extremely awkward task. Because the gaze is so intimate, many couples avoid this powerful aphrodisiac. They feel too vulnerable. But this exercise can be a powerful and therapeutic intervention for couples who want to reconnect or take their connection to an even deeper level.” ― Kimberly Resnick Anderson, a sex therapist in Los Angeles, California
6. PLAN OUT A NIGHT OF SEX IN ADVANCE
“A lot of couples I speak to agree that they would like to have sex more often, but being busy with their lives and preoccupied gets in the way of spontaneous sex. Try to make sex happen by planning a sexual experience with your partner way beforehand, early in the day. Think about how you’d like it to play out. How would you like to diverge from the regular choreography you usually engage in? Nothing is sexier for your partner than realizing that you have been planning a sexual indulgence for you. Plus, you can get yourself into the groove before you even get physical by thinking and fantasizing about the upcoming experience.” ― Ursula Ofman, a psychologist and sex therapist in New York City
7. TALK ABOUT YOUR FANTASIES
“Fantasy is underrated. You’d be surprised how few couples actually have conversations about their sexual preferences, expectations and fantasies. Many of my clients are either embarrassed by their erotic fantasies or have no access to them. Fleshing out your erotic script and sharing it with your partner can be extraordinarily liberating and erotic. Many of my clients assume that their partner is either not interested in their sexual fantasies or wouldn’t be receptive to hearing about them (let alone be willing to participate). But I’ve seen couples in sexless marriages re-initiate sex after exploring fantasy in my office. Experiencing your partner as a separate sexual being who has a rich fantasy life can be quite a turn-on.” ― Kimberly Resnick Anderson
Thinking about using sex toys? Good for you! Aiming for deeper sexual happiness makes good sense, because being sexually fulfilled leads to all kinds of health and psychological benefits, whether you’re single or in a relationship.
There’s a wonderful world of sex toys out there for you to explore. Things that buzz, things to put inside you, things to put yourself into (if you’re a bloke), things that restrain or tease… there’s so much variety, and enormous pleasure to be had.
Some toys are ultra-discreet and quiet, while others give a powerful bang for your buck. Certain designs, like dildos, are incredibly anatomically lifelike, while others are highly stylized and could be mistaken for household objects, designer gadgets or sci-fi movie props. It’s all a matter of personal preference, and there’s something out there for every taste.
Pricewise, you have a choice of value brands, luxury choices and everything in-between, with the cost depending on materials, technology and styling. In terms of power, some electrical toys take batteries, while others can be plugged in, and there’s a growing trend towards luxury USB rechargeable toys for convenience and style.
You’re spoiled for choice – so how do you go about choosing? Putting price and styling aside, it all simply comes down to the kind of stimulation you want.
Sex toys for women
If you’re a woman, you might want just external clitoral stimulation, or just vaginal stimulation – or both. Clitoral vibrators come in all shapes and sizes, including mini bullets and larger, ergonomic pebble shapes.
A great introductory clitoral toy is a ‘magic wand’, which has a broad, revolving head that you can also use for soothing muscles and other parts of your body. No worries if vibration isn’t a turn-on for you, though – other clitoral options include clever suction or rotating toys that more closely echo the feel of oral sex.
For vaginal stimulation, vibrators and dildos come in every width and length option you could wish for, from slimline to eye-wateringly huge. Many models are specially shaped to aim for your g-spot, too. For dual vaginal and clitoral stimulation, the most famous style is, of course, the rabbit – a vaginal vibrator with the addition of a pair of bunny ears to delight your clitoris.
Sex toys for men
For men, there are all kinds of ways to make masturbation more fun. Stretchy stroker sleeves have texture to excite your donger, while the world-famous Fleshlights have patented super-skin insides to resemble lady parts.
If something more lifelike is your bag you can opt for realistic vaginas and butts right through to full-size sex dolls. You can even purchase latex vaginas meticulously molded from real-life Aussie porn stars!
Another growing market is prostate toys. Recent research demonstrates the very significant health benefits of prostate massage, but the fantastic thing is that it’s not just beneficial, it’s hugely pleasurable. Real men, frankly, do and should put things up their bum. Go for a specially-shaped prostate massager and choose between vibrating and non-vibrating options.
Anal toys and playing with friends
This brings us right onto anal toys. Anal pleasure is most definitely for everyone – women and men, straight and gay – and can add a whole extra dimension to your sex life. Great toys to try include anal beads, for a gentle introduction, plus butt plugs and anal vibrators. Lashings of anal lubricant are a must to make things comfortable and fun.
In a relationship? Research shows that using sex toys together gives a real shaking-things-up boost, bringing partners closer together. All of the toys mentioned so far are fun to play with as a duo, but there are even more for a twosome treat.
Cock rings can help restrict penis blood flow to make erections last longer and orgasms more powerful. They range from cheap, single-use types through to vibrating varieties with extra features for clitoral stimulation. Big wins all round! Other fun couple toys include remote control versions of things such as bullet or knicker vibrators. The woman’s partner can be in charge of the controls, leading to all kinds of sexy situations and teasing anticipation.
And where teasing and pleasing is concerned, a little light bondage is just the job. Bondage play can start with a silky pair of wrist ties and a feather tickler – just something to lightly restrain one partner while the other treats them to delicious sensations. If you try that level and both love it, you can delve into the universe of bondage delight together.
Itching to start browsing online right away? Just as with all kinds of online shopping, it’s a great idea to look at honest customer reviews before you buy. Lovehoney’s website www.lovehoney.com.au is packed with views and advice by toy users. The videos on LovehoneyTV’s YouTube channel also make a frank, funny way to find out more about sex toy choices.
There’s so much pleasure ahead for you, so dive on in!
Paige Gregory isa blogger and sex toy expert who writes for Lovehoney Australia.