Variety is the spice of good sex. Mix things up with this seven-course menu. Serve hot!
The most important aspect of your sex life is maintaining a strong emotional bond. Make time every day to be affectionate, and revisit things you used to do, such as back rubs and marathon kissing sessions. 'For couples who kiss passionately, watch television curled up together and walk down the street holding hands, it's a very small step from touching to sex,' says Christine Webber, sex and relationship consultant for netdoctor.co.uk. 'The more loving and tactile it is, the stronger your relationship. And the better your sex life!'
Make fast, furious sex part of your weekly menu, but keep it as an occasional starter. 'Most men regularly find they wake up with an erection,' says Christine. 'Having a quickie first thing titillates the mind, your body's most erogenous zone, so you'll fancy a repeat performance later.'
A basic part of any relationship - you shouldn't need to order loving sex, it should occur naturally. 'We can't be having swinging-from-the-chandelier sex five times a week,' says Christine. 'It's more important to make sure that you're regularly having simple, loving, cuddly sex. So make time for it, and make it a habit,' she adds. Let's hear it from the missionary!
Sample new flavours, swap ideas with your partner, add sauce! Don't get stuck in your comfort zone. Try changing the location, position, props or what you wear in bed to reawaken your appetite. 'Check out reputable online sex shops like www.passion8.co.uk or sh-womenstore.com,' says Christine. 'Expand your repertoire and become a little more broad-minded. Take turns to indulge in each other's fantasies - the variety will keep things ticking over.'
'If you assume your man's always going to transport you to sexual ecstasy, you might have a long wait,' warns Christine.' It can be really empowering to take control, enjoyment is guaranteed if you're calling the shots. If every two or three times you dictate the menu, you'll get a completely different perspective on sex.'
'If you make time for sex when you feel tense, you'll feel muscular tension melt away and you'll supersize your pleasure,' says Christine. Researchers at Zurich University measured levels of the stress hormone cortisol in couples' saliva and found those who enjoyed regular sex had lower levels, even when their work-related stress was higher. By releasing tension short term, you'll enhance your wellbeing long term.
Our sexual appetites, like everything else, change over the years. What worked for you when you were 21 may not be quite so heart-racing now, so stay in tune with your own desires. 'How can you expect to get sexual satisfaction unless you continue finding out what you like?' says Christine. If you're uncomfortable masturbating, try stroking your skin to find where you like being touched. 'When women are on their own, it's easy to neglect sexual urges,' says Christine. 'But believe me, men don't go away for a few days without some solo satisfaction!'
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