How A Sex Menu Could Help In The Bedroom

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The simple trick that could help you have amazing sex.

All you need is a pen and paper!

Writhing about naked, covered in sweat: sex is one of the most uninhibited things you can do with another person. So it’s sort of odd that a lot of us are so terrible at talking about it.

And whether a relationship is in those heady stages when you fumble around trying to work out what marks “ooh that’s nice” from “er, please don’t do that”, or together for so long that you think you know their body better than Google Maps knows our planet, it can be tough to express exactly what you want.

Enter the sex menu.

This is list of what a person loves, hates, and would be up for trying during foreplay and sex. The depth that this goes in to depends on the person. Yes, this sounds cringe-worthy, but so is sex and that is why we are in this mess in the first place. And judging by a recent study by relationship charity Relate – which found that less than half of people are satisfied with their sex life, and 51 per cent had not had sex in the last month – a lot of us could do with some help in the bedroom.

Sex expert Dr Stephen de Wit suggests taking twenty minutes to be completely open with yourself, and run down his detailed list of turn-ons and positions, from holding hands to bondage, cross-dressing and caning, and marking ‘yes’ or ‘no’. To refine the list further, the answers can be ranked from one to five for willingness, with a section for notes explaining any concerns, fears or specific requests.

This simple exercise enables a person to build awareness about their body, and to take the time to consider what they enjoy, and how best to share this information with future partners.

“Do not judge others” he adds on his website. “There will be things on the list that turn you on tremendously and some that you’ll say ‘Oh Hells No’ or think something is gross. That is perfectly ok that you are not comfortable with it at this time of your life and it may be something that turns someone else on.”

Sex menus also avoid goal-oriented sex, where orgasms rather than pleasure, experimentation and exploration are the focus.

Peter Saddington, a sex therapist in the Midlands who works for the relationships charity Relate and is a chair of the College of Sexual Relation and Therapy, told The Independent that sex menus can certainly be a useful tool.

“Consistently people assume when they get together and they are sexual they develop a way to work and stick with it and don’t experiment. Sex is still a strange subject. There is pressure to think that people are having lots of great sex and that you need to do the same, but that is not the case for lots of couples”

Saddington goes on to argue that a lack of understanding when it comes to sex starts from a young age. “Sex isn’t talked about successfully by parents talking to kids or in schools. There is a general lack of knowledge and understanding about it as a subject.” As such, people can feel embarrassed and pressured into having sex they don’t fully enjoy.

An alternative to a sex menu is a three circle exercise, adds Saddington, where a person lays out what they are OK with, what they are no OK with, but also what they are happy have to give but not receive and visa versa.

But he stresses that while a sex menu is a good guide, it should still be perceived as flexible.

“How and whether you want to have sex is affected by that day and the relationship. There are questions you need to consider each time you are being sexual. Just because something worked last time, it doesn’t mean a person wants it a second time.”

For couples with clashing lists, Saddington suggests discussing the actions. “This can help ensure you are talking about the same thing, and see if the partner is willing to explore or meet half way.”

From there, try exploring verbally and physically but be sure to stop if something is uncomfortable.

How A Sex Menu Could Help In The Bedroom by Kashmira Gander was originally published on The Independent


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11 Ways for Your Partner (and You) to Get Really, Really Good at Sex

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Hopefully you come away satisfied pretty much every time you have sex. But that doesn’t mean there isn’t room for improvement—for you and your partner.

“It’s always possible to get better at sex,” says New York City sex therapist Ian Kerner, Ph.D., author of She Comes First. “You can always get more in tune with your own process of sexual arousal, as well as your partner’s, and always fine-tune/enhance the stimulation and orgasm, much of which comes through knowing yourself and knowing each other.”

Jessica O’Reilly, Astroglide’s resident sex and relationship expert, agrees: “I’m a sexologist, and I know I could be much better in bed.”

Here are a few ways to take your sex up a notch:


FOR YOUR PARTNER

  1. Work the spare parts:

“Don’t forget the perineum, testicles, and mons pubis (that padded area right above the genitals),” says licensed marriage and sex therapist Kat Van Kirk, Ph.D. She recommends tickling, fondling, and sucking the areas, both during foreplay and sex, to show how creative you are.

  1. Bust out a sex toy:

Sometimes we all need an extra hand to ramp things up, which is why Van Kirk recommends keeping a favorite sex toy handy. “Using a good sex toy, you can keep things spontaneous, avoid hand/wrist fatigue, and ensure that everyone ‘gets there,’” she says.

  1. Lube, lube, lube:

“The things you can do with lube will change your life,” says O’Reilly. Her best lube move: Use two hands (fingers interlaced) and a generous serving of lube to create a tight, wet grip for an epic hand job. “The couples I work with say this simple hand job technique is so good, it could put an end to blow jobs,” she says.

  1. Tease the anal area:

There’s a big difference between anal sex (which isn’t for everyone) and anal play (which can feel risqué but still within many people’s comfort zones). Kerner recommends grazing your partner’s anal area with your fingers or lips, especially during oral. “There are lots of nerve endings, and it’s also a taboo area for many guys,” he says. Van Kirk agrees: “Many men and women enjoy a little finger play during sex. It ups the ante.” Make sure to always add a little lubricant when exploring this area, as the anal area does not self lubricate.

  1. Double up on sensations:

Try stimulating two areas at once. For example, Kerner says you can squeeze your partner’s nipple while giving manual or oral stimulation to hit several erogenous zones at once.

FOR YOU

  1. Don’t be afraid to fantasize:

Kerner points out that there’s nothing wrong with fantasizing while you’re having sex—and it can really blow your mind. Plus, “it helps stress centers deactivate, which is important for arousal process,” he says.

  1. Take things into your own hands:

The clitoris is the gateway to orgasm for most women, so Kerner recommends either guiding your partner to yours or stimulating it yourself if you’re not getting what you need.

  1. Get noisy:

Not only is noisy sex hot, there’s a biological aspect of it that makes sex even better, O’Reilly says. “Holding back/muffling your sounds impedes natural breathing patterns, which can hinder orgasmic response,” she says. Moaning, groaning, and breathing heavily, on the other hand, helps move things along.

  1. Clear your head:

It sounds obvious that you should be in the moment when you’re having sex, but Van Kirk notes that it’s an issue for a lot of women. “Being stuck in your head, worried about how you look during sex or what you need to do when you’re done, never improves sex,” she points out. Instead, zero in on the sensations you’re feeling and ride them out.

  1. Masturbate more:

“Most women don’t self stimulate enough,” says Van Kirk. “This can result in orgasm issues related to a lack of self awareness about what stimulation works best for them.” Plus, she points out, women who masturbate more tend to have higher self esteems and more confidence in the bedroom. And, of course, when you know what works for you during a solo session, it’s more easy to get what you need with partner sex.

  1. Talk it out:

While there are a lot of moves you can try, Kerner says talking about sex, communicating during sex, and sharing fantasies really is the best way to have next-level sex. “When people think back on the best sex they ever had, there’s often an aspect of novelty or psychological stimulation,” he says.

 

11 Ways for Your Partner (and You) to Get Really, Really Good at Sex By Korin Miller was originally published on Glamour


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4 Foreplay Tricks You Probably Haven’t Tried

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Foreplay doesn’t just help get you in the mood—it can also feel as good as or sometimes even better than sex.

Since everyone has different turn-ons, the best thing you can do is pay attention to what works for you and then try to recreate it, says Winter. Don’t be afraid to let your partner know when they do something that you like, either. They’ll probably be happy to keep doing whatever gets you going in the future…and they’ll definitely appreciate the positive feedback.

Don’t believe us? Then you probably haven’t tried these fun new ideas.

  1. Replay your best memories together.

If you want to get some of the passion you had early in your relationship back, one thing you can do is recreate your past, says sexologist Barbara Winter, Ph.D.

This can start before sex—for example, going to one of your old date-night spots or wearing the same clothes you wore during a hot moment at the beginning of your relationship. Then, later in the night, break out a move you used to do in bed that really turned you both on.

  1. Start off outside the bedroom.

If you want to make things more spontaneous, try initiating foreplay in the kitchen, office, garage, or anywhere else where you don’t typically do it, says sex and relationship coach Claudia Six, Ph.D.

You can either lead your partner to the bedroom afterward or just have sex right then and there. “It’s the unexpected that keeps things interesting,” she says.

  1. Watch porn together.

If you and your partner are both into porn or are at least intrigued by it, try checking it out together. Afterward, Winter recommends talking about what you each like and dislike and what you might want to try (or not). Sometimes, it opens you up to ideas you might not have thought of before, says Winter.

  1. Experiment with temperature.

Heat and cold can both add a lot to the sensations you’re already feeling. One way to play with temperature is to suck on ice cubes and lick each other’s erogenous zones. Or you can try dripping warm wax on each other’s bodies or using warming lube. Either tactic—or the two combined—should create “a delicious shiver,” says Six.

 

4 Foreplay Tricks You Probably Haven’t Tried by Suzannah Weiss was originally published on Glamour


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How Sex Toys Can Help You Play Nice With a Partner

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Picture it: You’re with a partner, it’s late at night and things are getting pretty hot. You’re kissing, you’re touching, you’re sizing each other up for the next move. So you decide to make one: You reach under the bed and pull out … your favorite sex toy.

Now here’s where things get interesting. Because while some people (both men and women) will jump at the chance to play with something new, others will, well, freak right out.

Men often worry that that big ‘ol purple dildo has appeared to replace them; women may feel embarrassed by those anal beads, or maybe just plain worried about where they’re gonna go (and how that’s going to feel).

Those feelings are common – and worth exploring – but they miss the point. Sex toys aren’t about replacing a partner or making them uncomfortable. They’re about fun! And they can be a lot of fun. The key is to apply the very same rules you’d apply to any other sex play. And by that we mean communication, consent and care.

Want to bring a little adventure into the bedroom? We talked to Charlie Glickman, a sexuality educator who’s teamed up with Violet Blue to present a new edition of her new book, “The Adventurous Couple’s Guide to Sex Toys.” Here are five things to know about playing nice – with toys!

They Aren’t a Substitute

You might use sex toys more often when you’re lonely or single, but even when you’re in a super-hot relationship, a little toy action on the side can be a beautiful thing. It’s a way to de-stress. It’s a way to learn. Heck, it’s a way to pass an otherwise uneventfull Saturday afternoon. What it isn’t is a replacement for a sexual relationship.

“One of the great things about sex toys is that they give you ways to create sensations that human bodies just don’t do. They’re not a substitute, just an add-on. Sex without a toy is fun and I’m not knocking it, but you can do things with a vibrator or dildo that human bodies don’t do. Toys just give you more possibilities,” Glickman said.

So rather than thinking of that vibrating dildo as your partner’s silicone stand-in, think of it as you would a blender: It can help make a great dish, but it doesn’t replace the cook!

They’re Nothing Special … but What You Do With Them Might Be

With the exception of a few toys designed specifically for couples, such as the We-Vibe, vibrating cock rings or a strap-on, many “couples'” toys are really just the same old sex toys you might use solo. What’s special about bringing a partner in on the action is that it might enable you to use the toy in new and different ways (we only have two hands of our own after all!).

You Have to Tread Lightly

If you want to use a toy with a partner but have never brought it up before, the time to do it is not in the heat of the moment. Seriously. While some people will see that introduction as super-sexy, it’ll make many other people cringe. Plus, it’s a bit of an ambush. Sex makes us vulnerable. Ambushing someone in a vulnerable position is, well, not very nice.

“I think you’re better off introducing the topic before you take your clothes off,” Glickman said. “That way if your partner says ‘tell me more,’ if they have question or feelings, you haven’t just dumped a cold pitcher of ice water on your sexy Saturday night. It’s better to introduce it rather than pull your vibrator out from under the bed. Because you might be surprised how someone reacts to that.”

If you want to play with toys, test the waters with your partner first – by talking it over.

You Have to Experiment

Sex toy retailers tend to bombard people with sensory adjectives. It’s called marketing, and while Glickman says it generally isn’t inaccurate, it tends to lead to one very inaccurate assumption: That all those words will describe your experience with a toy. You know what they say: One person’s leg-shaking orgasm might be another person’s onerous and unsuccessful attempt at sexual stimuation. That’s just the way it is with sex toys because our bodies are so different.

“Nothing works the same for everybody,” Glickman said. “If a toy really isn’t any good, they’ll stop manufacturing it very quickly. So, if you’ve seen a toy around for a while, chances are it works for a lot of people.”

Of course that still doesn’t mean it’ll work for you. In order to find that out, you’ll have to try it … and possibly practice a little at using it.

“Sometimes a toy works and sometimes it doesn’t, but try it again another day,” Glickman said. “You might need to try something a couple of times to figure out how to make it work for you.”

And don’t assume that bigger or harder or stronger is better. What’s better is what feels best to you. Find out what that is, and branch out from there.

Toys Widen Your Sexual Repertoire

“Sex is a lot like food,” Glickman says. “You never know what you’re going to like until you try it. So sometimes it pays to be a little adventurous.”

Sex toys are a great way to bring a little adventure into the bedroom, to experiment with new experiences and to share them with your partner. Plus, having a few around can really expand what’s on the menu – and that means you and your partner are more likely to leave the table feeling satisfied.

How Sex Toys Can Help You Play Nice With a Partner was originally published on Kinkly.


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A Few Tips for Great Morning Sex

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Sex is one of the greatest things in existence. So it makes sense that one of the best ways to start off a day is with, well, sex.

Morning sex can help set a very positive tone for the rest of your day, and it’ll have you thinking about your partner throughout—so by the time you’re both home for the night, it’s likely you’ll be ready to jump each other again.

Here are a few suggestions to make the most out of your next morning sex session.

Take your time

Morning sex can be rushed. You’re not likely building it into your schedule, which means when the alarm goes off, you have a very limited amount of time to get things done before you rush out your door. A quickie is great, but even a quickie can be done without rushing. Make sure that when you have sex, you’re in the moment and it’s the only thing you’re paying attention to or thinking about.

Don’t let your breath deter you

People tend to worry about their morning breath when it comes to morning sex, but it’s an overstated worry. You know what’s worse than having sex with someone who has morning breath? Not having sex.

And morning sex doesn’t have to occur immediately upon waking. If you want to get a little bit into it and then go brush your teeth, go for it and get back after it.

You can also always keep some breath mints on your nightstand. For efficiency.

Get things going with a Z-Job

Surprise morning sex is amazing. If you wake up in the mood, one excellent way to surprise your partner is by going down on them while they’re still asleep. Can you imagine a better way to wake up in the morning? It beats the annoying, awful sound of an alarm clock, that’s for sure.

Shower together

If you finish in the bedroom, a morning shower together is an excellent way to literally bathe in the afterglow of the sex you’ve just had. And if you’re especially short on time, you can always complete the act in the shower before you soap each other off in lieu of a post-morning-sex cuddling session.

A Few Tips for Great Morning Sex was originally posted on The Nightstand.


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How To Make Lube Application Feel Sexy Instead Of Awkward

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We’re always hearing that we could be having better sex, a better orgasm, or a better relationship. But how often do we hear the nitty-gritty of how we can actually better understand our deepest desires and most embarrassing questions?

Bustle has enlisted Vanessa Marin, a sex therapist, to help us out with the details. No gender, sexual orientation, or question is off limits, and all questions will remain anonymous. Please send your sex and relationship inquiries to tips@bustle.com. Now on to this week’s question: how to make using lube feel sexy.

Q: “I’ve read about the benefits of using lube during sex. I am definitely on the drier side, so I know I should give it a shot. I bought some, but in the moment, I just can’t bring myself to actually use it during sex. I feel awkward interrupting the moment to pull out the bottle. I feel weird and on display slathering it on myself. Is there a way to put on lube that’s sexy and doesn’t pause everything?”

A: Thanks for the question! I think lube is one of the simplest, yet most effective, tools for improving your sex life. It decreases pain and discomfort, makes sex feel better, and can be an awful lot of fun to play around with. That being said, I know a lot of people still feel uncomfortable using lube, for some of the exact reasons you described. But we shouldn’t let goopy bottles or a fear of busting it out ruin the entire experience! Here are eight ways to make lube feel sexier.

 

  1. Treat Yourself

Most people buy their lube at the drugstore, but it’s hard to get very excited by an ugly bottle that cost you three bucks. If you can afford it, I highly recommend splurging on a high-quality bottle of lube like Pjur or Wicked. It will feel more luxurious and special, which will help you feel less embarrassed whipping it out. If you’re in a relationship, you can even research your purchase together so it feels like a treat for both of you.

  1. Put It In A Cute Lotion Dispenser

Even the best lube manufacturers have yet to address what I think is the most frustrating aspect of using lube: dealing with the bottle in the moment! Pjur brand is my holy grail of lubes, but I hate the screw-top design. The cap inevitably slides out of your hands, it’s difficult to figure out exactly how much you’re dispensing, and it’s tricky not to get lube all over the bottle.

But here’s a simple solution — transfer your lube into a pretty pump dispenser! The pump makes it easy to get lube quickly and discretely. It ensures that at least one hand stays lube-free, so you won’t have to worry about trying to put a cap back on while your fingers are slippery. You can find a beautiful bottle that suits your tastes and won’t look out of place on your bedside table, meaning it will always be within reach instead of buried at the bottom of your drawer.

  1. Experiment With It On Your Own

If you’re brand-new to using lube, it may take a bit of time to get comfortable using it. Let me be clear — there’s absolutely nothing to be embarrassed about when it comes to using lube. But if you’re feeling awkward about using it, the best way to get more comfortable is to use it on your own first. Try masturbating with lube. Play with it with your fingers. Notice the way it changes the sensation of your own touch. See if you can make masturbation more of a sensual, seductive experience.

  1. Use It During A Massage

Similarly, it may take some time to get used to using lube with a partner. One really easy way to introduce lube to your relationship is to use it during a massage. A lot of people don’t know that lube can work well as a regular massage oil. Tell your partner that you have a surprise for them, then get a little bit of lube in your hands and rub their shoulders. As you both get turned on, you can say something like, “we can play with this in other areas too.”

  1. Put It On Privately

If you’re feeling shy about using lube with your partner, you can always keep a bottle in your bathroom and put it on privately. Or keep a few single-use packets in your purse if you’re going to a partner’s house. Again, there’s nothing to be embarrassed about, but it’s fine to give yourself some time to build up your courage. (Keep in mind that you don’t want to let your partner perform oral sex if you’re using a lube that’s not specifically designed to be tasted, but this trick should work just fine before manual stimulation or penetration.)

  1. Ask Your Partner To Put It On You

Once you’re feeling more comfortable with the lube, hand your bottle to your partner and tell them, “I want you to put some of this on me.” Have them spend some time rubbing and massaging your thighs, labia, and clitoris. This way, lube becomes a part of the action instead of just some weird step you do before you’re ready to go.

  1. Put It On Your Partner

If you usually engage in penetrative sex, you can try applying the lube to your partner’s dildo or penis. Apply a generous amount, since you want the lube to transfer to your vaginal canal during penetration. Play with your partner’s equipment for a while. If you want to up the sensation play factor, blindfold your partner or ask them to close their eyes, then surprise them with an extra-slippery hand job. This is another way to make lube a part of the fun!

  1. Put On A Show

Once you’re feeling more bold, one of the best ways to make lube sexy in the moment is to put on a show for your partner. Grab some lube, spread your legs, and let your partner watch you rub it all over yourself. If you’re feeling really seductive, say something like, “do you like watching that?” I guarantee you that this move will make you and your partner practically explode with desire!

Vanessa Marin’s article was originally posted on Bustle


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I’ll Go Anywhere With You

TB Wira DyatmikaI close my eyes and I imagine the places we will wander—the sand we will let run through our fingertips, the cracked earth we will walk tenderly across, the rough bark of trees underneath our palms, the cool water that we will slip into slowly, soothing our tired legs. I want to travel…

via I’ll Go Anywhere With You — Thought Catalog