A spot of sexual pleasure is what we all need to reduce stress, improve our sleep and put us in a more positive frame of mind. So with more time on our hands, how do we make the best of the situation? Cecile Gasnault, creator of Vulva Talks, a sexual education programme, discusses how to spice up your sex life – for couples and those living apart.
In these troubled times, several things are impacting how we might feel. The constant flow of information centred around the unknown and global situation, coming to terms with a new routine where our home has also become our office and health concerns may all be influencing our overall wellbeing – as well as our sex lives.
How does sex fit into this new equation? It makes sense to take care of our sexual selves the same way we do for everything else. Health benefits of sexual pleasure include stress release, a more positive mood and better sleep, so now we have more time on our hands – how can we make the best of the situation?
For the ones living with their significant others, there’s no pressure to simply have sex because we’re locked in 24/7 with our partner and for the ones flying solo and dreading a dry spell, this is a reminder that we can always enjoy orgasms by ourselves (and, of course it’s the safest sex you can have!).
If your desire has plummeted though, know it is completely normal to feel this way when you are adjusting to a very sudden change of routine. So, whether you’re confined to isolation with your partner or are living apart, here are some tips to spice up your sex life.
For those of you within a couple:
Make use of your newly found time
No more commute means you have more time for morning sex! Use the time at home when you would have been travelling on the tube or cycling to work to start the day in an intimate way.
Get creative within the workplace
Your partner is your new co-worker, so office sex anyone? A really popular fantasy at the moment is using taking ‘advantage’ of our new home office space to create an intimate, exciting area for you and your partner. Really get to know your partner by asking what their fantasies are and take the time to tick these off both of your lists.
Plan dates at home
We sometimes become neglectful of our appearance when we don’t have to leave the house, so use this time to make the effort. Take a look at what some of your most romantic and special dates were and why not relive these? Schedule drinks, dinners, a movie, a spa in the bedroom and dress up for each other. If you have children, work around a schedule and have late night drinks!
Try new pleasure techniques
Read erotic stories that you like to each other. This can be a great way to heighten the senses resulting in more intimate sex together. This newfound intimacy is an opportunity to connect further about your respective fantasies. If your desire has plummeted though, know it is completely normal to feel this way when you are adjusting to a very sudden change of routine. Massage, sensual touch, making out for a prolonged time and hugging (which increases hormones like oxytocin) are all ways to heighten the romantic mood.
Try something new:
Be creative and find a new place to have sex in your home, find a new moment in the day that works for you, and of course why not try some new sex toys… If you’ve not used toys in the bedroom before, it’s important to talk about this first. Find out what you’re looking for? Will it be something to use on both of you or something for one partner specifically? Choose it together to make this a shared initiative and part of your couple sex life. Unpack it together as well. Make sure you learn how to use it before using during sex as having to go looking for a battery can be a real ‘buzz-killer’ during sex.
Keep Netflix out of your bedroom!
This can really kill the mood (especially if you watch something scary or dark). Really take the time to appreciate this time together as it will make your relationship go a long way.
And for those of you flying solo..
Give your mind a break from the news
Indulge in erotica instead. Take some time to think about your favourite sex memories or your favourite creative fantasies and even write these down. Fantasy is an important part of female sexuality so allow yourself some time for sexual creativity.
Do some sensual journalising
Sensual journaling is a great way to become more self-aware and confident in our sex lives. If you find yourself a little stuck, try to visualise yourself maybe in the future as your most confident and sexually fulfilled persona. This is a technique that a lot of people use to build their inner confidence, which can lead to trust, empathy and patience within a relationship – so why not do this now for how you want to feel sexually?
Take care of your body
Massage and pamper yourself with your favourite skincare, as this will really help you become more attuned with your body. Time is something that we can all have a much stronger sense for, so instead of rushing through your evening routine, take an extra 20 minutes to really feel your skin while you apply your moisturiser or stay a while longer giving yourself a foot massage. Eating well is also really crucial for our mental and emotional health, which will impact our ability for arousal.
Create a special, sacred and sensual sanctuary for you
Whether you have a small flat or are in a flat-share, having a lot of space isn’t a luxury we all have so here are a few ideas to help you create a ‘sensual nest’. Having no screens, dimming the lights, adding some diffuse scents and playing some sensual music will go a long way in making a relaxing atmosphere for you. This will also help in combatting the dreaded cabin fever and creating a special place for you and your mind to wander to an erotic.
And of course, whether you’re isolating with your partner or alone, use this time to update your sex education. If you feel sexually curious but not physically interested, you can always take the time to check out the latest research on female pleasure. You will have opportunities to put this into practice later.
Cecile Gasnault is Marketing Director at Smile Makers and creator of Vulva Talks, a free, pleasure positive, sexual education programme that covers a wide range of topics for all stages of life, including pleasure anatomy, masturbation, and sex during pregnancy.
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Main image: @smilemakerscollection