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Archive for the ‘Sex Tips’ Category

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When you think of some classic elements of a romantic evening what do you think of? No, not jumper cables, an Easter bunny costume and a copy of “Dawson’s Crack,” you kinky so-and-so. I mean classic as in a lovey-dovey mainstream kind of date. For many people wine is going to be high on the list … it’s a romantic staple, there to impress and help break the ice on the first date,  to spiff up anniversaries, birthdays and Valentine’s Days, it’s even crucial wedding toast. You drink to the happy couple with champagne, not Tang.

So it makes some sense and is rather sweet that one of the most venerated and certainly the most adorable of all sex therapists, Dr. Ruth Westheimer, is putting out her own line of wines – Vin d’Amour – which has half the alcohol content of regular wines and therefore will put you in that relaxing mood without getting you so drunk you either can’t do the deed or no one will do it with you.

“I’m always saying couples should drink to relax but not too much,” Dr. Ruth told the New York Post in an interview about her new venture (and a totally worthwhile read including details about her background as a Holocaust survivor). “If (the woman) drinks too much, she falls asleep and if (the man) drinks too much, he can’t perform. It’s the same problem for gay couples.” (We’d like to add that alcohol can also have a similar effect on women’s genitals that it does for men – they don’t just fall asleep. Clitorises are made with the same erectile tissue as penises and too much alcohol can affect the ability of these tissues to maintain an erection making it very difficult for women to reach orgasm.)

Dr. Ruth’s wine has only 6% alcohol while most wines are about 13% and at $7.99 to $9.99 a bottle it’s an affordable romantic element. Another plus: part of the profits go to the Museum of Jewish Heritage.

“With this (low-alcohol) wine, I am saying: ‘Relax, but don’t do it (drink) too much.’ If sex follows or not, it doesn’t matter. It’s about finding and communicating with a significant other.” Dr. Ruth has been giving fine advice for almost the whole time I’ve been having sex so I plan on nipping into a bottle or two of Vin d’Amour but there are, of course some non-alcoholic ways of relaxation before sex, the three easiest being these:

* Music. Nothing, not even wine, can change a person’s mood faster or more effectively than music. Where would horror movies be without it? So whether it’s some acoustic Brazilian, some Marvin Gaye, or some calming New Age, your iTunes will chill you out almost as quickly as you can turn it on.

* Massage.  Whether you go earlier in the day to get a massage from someone else or start out with a foot rub, back rub, or shoulder rub, that skin-to-skin contact and concentration entirely on the physical sensation – to rub and be rubbed – has a pretty high proof of it’s own.

* Heat.  Whether it’s a hot bath, hot shower (together, perhaps), a sauna or a hot tub heat relaxes your muscles to the point where, ironically enough, you can’t help but chill out.

Whichever way you decide on to relax on your romantic evening … cheers!

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As December comes to an end and everyone begins to come down from their holiday-high, that annual question always creeps up at the end of the month: What am I going to do for my New Years resolution?

New Year’s Eve is the night where individuals reflect on the past year, and more importantly, look forward to the promises that lay ahead. And often, the start of a new year is the time for many to reflect on the changes they want (or need) to make in their busy lives.

But here is my take on the New Year: Although it is a magnificent time to wipe the slate clean and look to start making improvements, often times—the resolutions appear to be all work, no play.

As you skim many of the major news sites over the next few days, handfuls of publications will be highlighting the top resolutions of the year (i.e. lose weight, workout more, spend less money, quit smoking, eat less junk food, etc.). And although many of those goals are fabulous ones to make, they tend to focus on doing less of something you love (even if that thing isn’t the best for you).

So as you begin to think about the changes you want to make in your life for the New Year, we challenge you to add another goal to your list: experience more pleasure.

This way, as you work to eliminate your vices in 2012, you can replace the old habits with new, sex positive ones.

So to get you started off on the right foot this year, we’ve put together a handful of options to incorporate into your routine that will help you experience more pleasure in 2012.

-       Each month, aim to try a new sex position. Whether it be one that you’ve been dying to try, or revisiting a position you’ve loved in the past—aim to break the cycle if you’ve found yourself falling into a “sex routine”.

-       Incorporate sex toys into the mix. If you don’t already own them, the New Year is the perfect time to start. Whether you start out with something simple (such as vibrators or vibrating cock rings) or go straight to dildos or anal toys—sex toys are made to bring more pleasure.

-       Try a new toy each month. Lets say you’re already a seasoned user of sex toys—by making a resolution to try a new one each month, not only will you gain quite the collection, you’ll be less likely to become bored with current equipment.

-       Set a designated ‘day for sex’. Often times when couples get extremely busy, sex gets pushed to the back burner . So aim to have a designated day for sex each week or each month whatever your schedules and libidos allow. And I’m not just talking a quickie before bed—I mean the whole nine yards. Incorporate time for foreplay, spice it up by taking it to the shower or role-playing with sexy outfits—basically just give yourself enough time to savor the moment.

-       Shoot for sex in new locations. If you’re prone to only doing the deed in the bedroom, aim to have sex in 12 new locations throughout 2012. Whether it be the kitchen, a parking garage, your bathroom—or someone else’s bathroom. Sex in new places is a great thing to try.

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The Orgasm Loop

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In the classic Woody Allen film Annie Hall there’s a scene where Alvie’s wife just misses having an orgasm. She was distracted by a police siren. The night before, he reminds her, it was a car horn.

“What are you gonna do, have them shut down the airport, too?” he says, “No more flights so we can have sex?”

It’s funny but also telling: loss of focus can screw up sexy time and author Susan Crain Bakos says it’s easier for women to get distracted than men. That’s one of the reasons she invented  The Orgasm Loop, a way get to orgasm during intercourse – or at any other time. The impetus for the idea came to her in the  80’s during a workshop with famed sexologist Dr. Annie Sprinkle offering “no-hands orgasms” women could manage through fantasy and fire-breathing. It was fun, but it wasn’t quite taking Susan where she wanted to go. 

Susan, herself a famed sex expert and author of numerous books on technique, tinkered for awhile and eventually several pieces fell into place and she came up with the Orgasm Loop. There’s a book, Orgasm Loop: The No-Fail Technique for Reaching Orgasm During Sex, but a condensed version appears in Susan’s  The Sex Bible For Women: The Complete Guide to Understanding Your Body, Being a Great Lover and Getting the Pleasure You Want, which is the one I’ve been working with.  

The first step is mental arousal and to help achieve that you’ll need an arousal image: something that’s the equation of a man’s erection that helps you visualize your arousal. Visualizing your own genitalia swelling and responding, a color you associate with arousal, works of art you can equate that feeling with – it should be, she says, like “a mental erotic mantra” 

Next is energy focus: imagine concentrations of sexual energy in different parts of your body and move them towards your genitalia with your breath. 

Next come the physical moves, including fire-breathing (“imagine you are breathing fire in a circle, inhaling it up from your genitals throughout your body and exhaling out your mouth,” working your PC muscles – the ones you use for kegels – tightening when you breathe in, letting go on the exhale – and finally clitoral stimulation.

The book gives far more detail that’s helpful in really getting the hang of it, but that’s a good outline of what to expect to learn. 

My experience has been that it’s a full-body turn on: the energy focus and breathing lead to a more intense, faster arousal and the arousal image is a curiously big help  (I’m not telling you what mine is, unless we’re having lots of drinks).

I haven’t gotten it exactly yet, but Susan says it can take a number of tries…but since I’m having lots of orgasms while I practice I’m not in any big hurry. How many things can you say that last bit about? It’s definitely a technique to try.

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Size Doesn’t Matter

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Americans are obsessed with size and frankly, it’s getting a little tired. Certainly there are reasons for it – if nothing succeeds like excess then it makes sense that amplitude of everything from our cars to our breasts to our Big Gulps to our waists to our phones end up being a subject of interest or exaggeration.  There is one thing, though, the size of which I get tired of seeing attended to (besides women) and that is the penis. 

When we say that size doesn’t matter we’re not being nice. It’s just true. The penis-car comparison is made a lot, i.e., if a guy drives a Hummer he might be overcompensating for a perceived shortfall…well, the comparison works in that there’s no question that a Honda will get you where you want to go as well as an ATV….possibly more happily, depending on the driver. 

For openers, let’s take the vagina. A sensitive place, yes, but 90% of its nerve endings are right near the opening, in the first third of a space that’s 3-5 inches long. It can expand with arousal but we’re still talking about 90% of the sensitivity being at the front. If you were to go to a party and 90% of the guests were in the foyer, you probably wouldn’t have a chance to worry about getting to the backyard. 

Second, penis-vagina sex is not the only kind of sex there is. It counts, but there’s also oral, manual and there are numerous other body parts to be doted on and ways to stimulate them. The more time and chances you take to explore lots of options the more openness and trust develops and the more fun everything you do together is going to be.

If you want to experiment in seeing whether it makes any difference, there are penis enhancers that can be fun for both partners to play with and play is the important thing: remember, neither one of you should feel like it’s another job. 

Finally, the cliches are true: it’s not the length of the wand, it’s who’s waving it that counts. Once the chemistry spell has been cast (this has been my experience) they will not see the things culture has capriciously decided are flaws, even where you, as the lovee, see them in yourself. Looking at TV one could get the idea that happiness is limited to the young, beautiful and optimally-shaped but if you look at real  life you will see all kinds of people who don’t fit that mold out on dates, holding hands and otherwise unable to keep their mitts off each other. I’d be willing to bet none of them are perfect.         

So whatever you think your short comings are, remember you don’t have to be just-right, just right for that one person. Isn’t it a good bet you have a head start there already?

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On one episode of Absolutely Fabulous, Edina asks Patsy “What do you see when you look in the mirror?” “Me looking fabulous,” she replies.

Oh, to always feel like Patsy! But no matter how gorgeous we may be there are some days we all feel like frumpy, dumpy and grumpy and no, those are not three decidedly unattractive dwarves. A little water retention here, an upcoming high school reunion there, long sedentary hours at work or study and anyone could start to feel like a Jello-O mold. Those days can make us feel very unsexy, indeed.

Those are definitely not the times when you want to slip into something skimpy, lacy, or form-fitting…yet that might be exactly the right time to do it. It might feel counter intuitive, but you may discover that frowziness can just become habit and slipping into the ensemble of a bombshell can remind you that, under those sweat pants, you are one.

I once had a friend who would go to work at her office job in the kind of lingerie most of us save for a night of seduction – black stockings with garter belts, lace panties and push-‘em up bras. Single at the time, she was the only person who was going to see her gorgeous body in her fancy lingerie, but having herself as an audience was enough. It made her feel sexy, gave her a bubbly rush, and she walked around looking as self-assured on the outside as someone wearing such gear ought to feel….so she was kind of armed to seduce the world all the time.

I tried the trick myself once after a long period of frowse (I work at home which allows one to live in pajamas if one likes and eventually look it). It worked. Getting made up to do routine things or wearing my black seamed stockings instead of going bare-legged was a marvelous morale boost. It made me feel more exciting and excitable and made those sweats seem like a comfy choice – not an inevitability.

Next time you’re feeling like you need a little sartorial pick-me-up it’s certainly worth the few minutes it takes to try on this idea of secret sexiness. You don’t have to go full-blown Moulin-Rouge. MyPleasure’s new Baci line of lingerie has some sweet-and-discreet items no one has to know about but you. The feeling of a slinky pink leopard bra strap on your shoulder, daring to wear corset style fishnet stockings to a cocktail party or enjoying the turn-on of crotchless lace panties with a skirt can be a small, private pleasure that makes you feel more like your seductive self.

But be warned you may feel sexy enough to show them off to someone else.

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Question

My husband and I use condoms for birth control, but we would like to try sex in the shower. Are condoms safe to use in water?

Answer

Condoms are perfectly safe to use in water, whether in the shower or submerged (though I would suggest putting them on before you get in the shower, pool, ocean, submarine … or whatever).

The bigger issue is that having sex in water can be a little tricky because the lubrication (whether natural or synthetic) tends to get rinsed away. If you don’t have enough lubrication, the friction can wear down the condom and cause it to break. So what I would recommend is that you explore lubricants that are silicone-based. These lubricants do not rinse away easily from just water, yet are perfectly safe when used with latex.

Best,
Dr. Sandor Gardos signature
Dr. Sandor Gardos

MyPleasure provides up-to-date and useful sexual education materials in combination with a store that allows people to buy, try, and learn about new aspects of sexuality. We believe everybody deserves a great sex life.
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In case you haven’t noticed we always offer a free sex toy with purchase. It’s one of the reasons that shopping with us is so much fun. We always try to pick a toy that will appeal to the widest audience without breaking the bank on our side. Afterall, we give you that toy no matter what you purchase. There is no minimum.

There have been many times where we’ve offered a vibrating cock ring for the promo toy and sometimes we get complaints that these toys are not for a wide audience because many people assume you need a penis or a partner with a penis for these toys. That’s simply not true. It’s an unfortunate conclusion people arrive at because of the name of the toy and we completely understand. But we like being creative with our adult toys. We like using them for much more than their intended use. Life is more interesting that way. You read our recent post on 11 different uses for silicone lube right?

Vibrating cock rings have several uses too. Sure, you can use them on a penis during intercourse. They constrict the blood flow that goes out of the penis, but not into it which results in a harder, longer lasting erection. And the vibrator can be rubbed against the clit for extra stimulation to push your partner over the edge.

But they can also be used on your favorite dildo. Just slide the ring on, turn the vibe on, and you’ll find the vibrations will carry down the length of the dildo’s shaft. You’ll also have a vibrator to rub your clit on as you use the dildo. Another option is sliding it onto your favorite insertable vibrator. All of a sudden you’ve amped up your simple vibe making it a dual action toy which allows you to receive both vaginal and clitoral stimulation at the same time.

What’s the difference between bullet vibrators and vibrating cock rings? Usually, just one little strap. So why can’t you use that cock ring vibe just like you would a regular bullet? That’s a trick question. You totally can. In fact you can use the strap as an easy way to hold on to it. Some of them, like the current promo, even come with fun textures on the sleeve of the cock ring. If you need a bit stronger vibration, most of the time the bullet is removable. If you like really light vibration, you can wear the cock ring on your fingers and the vibration will travel through them. And don’t forget that there are lots of body parts that enjoy vibration, not just clits. Try the vibe on your nipples, all over male and female genitals, and the perineum. Get creative! Just don’t stick these little vibes in your butt – they could become lost.

If you prefer to use condoms on your sex toys (or on your partners) a cock ring is a great, simple way to make sure that condom stays on especially if your toy is small or oddly shaped. The added vibration is a bonus!

Or maybe you’re a guy who is interested in spicing up masturbation. Slide the vibrating cock ring on upside down so the vibe stimulates your balls and penis and stroke away using your hand or a masturbator.

Just remember to be creative, have fun, and be safe and you will find many new uses for all of your sex toys … and maybe even some for your kitchen gadgets. Wooden spanking spoon anyone?

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