Posted on June 30, 2011
by Jennifer Benjamin
Wild hook-ups that make you wish you had soundproof walls and indestructible bedsprings are a blast, but you probably sometimes crave sex that enhances the emotional and mental closeness between you and your guy. And, although it seems like a no-brainer that intimacy is important, unfortunately, it's all too often missing in action.
"People tend to become so focused on the physical mechanics involved in reaching orgasm that they tune out their partner in the process," says sex therapist Joy Davidson, PhD, author of Fearless Sex. As a result, you may end up feeling disconnected.
So, we're going to let you in on how to boost romance. "The key to truly sensual sex is engaging with each other at every stage of the action so that you feel like you're a single unit, rather than two separate entities," Davidson explains. Here's how to get there.
1. Drown Out Pesky Distractions
Before you start getting into it, quickly eliminate clutter—shut your closet door, stash junk—and if you live on a busy street, close the windows. A clean, calm setting will allow you and your guy to focus on each other.
Also, light a couple of candles or turn on the light in an adjacent room, then leave the door open to subtly illuminate the room you're in.
"Because romantic sex is leisurely, you're more likely to notice stuff like a crack in the ceiling or a mole on your guy's shoulder, which can pull you out of the moment," says Patti Britton, PhD, co-author of The Complete Idiot's Guide To Sensual Massage. "Turning down the lights drops a veil over the setting, so your mind won't be as likely to wander." Plus, it's easier to maintain eye contact with him in dim lighting.
2. Undress Each Other
Rather than stripping off your own stuff, remove one another's clothes. "It forces you to slow down and give your partner your full attention because you need to be careful with zippers, buttons, and the hooks on your bra," Davidson explains. "You'll also wind up naturally stroking each other as you slide the fabrics along your skin." This, in turn, draws your attention to the body part that's being touched, enhancing the pleasurable sensations you're experiencing.
3. Get Physical During Pillow Talk
Couples often feel closest to each other when they're lying in bed and talking before they fall asleep at the end of the day, says sex therapist Darcy Luadzers, PhD, author of The 10-Minute Sexual Solution. So, take advantage of your relaxed, open state. As you're talking quietly, let your hands wander over each other's bodies, using your fingertips and nails to scratch the skin gently.
4. Intensify Your Kiss
Kissing sometimes ends up falling by the wayside during sex, because you're concentrating on below-the-belt sensations. However, "a passionate kiss mid-intercourse makes the experience sexier," Britton says. "Not only are you locked together physically, but you're also face-to-face and one hundred percent engaged with the other person."
Alternate between deep kisses, running the tip of your tongue along his lips, and gently pulling each of his lips toward you with a sucking motion.
5. Make Eye Contact
Holding your guy's gaze for a few seconds is one of the most powerful ways to increase intimacy, according to Britton. In Tantra, it is believed that gazing left eye to left eye opens up the "feeling" side of your brain and subconsciously makes you more vulnerable with your partner.
Try this technique: During sex, angle your head slightly to the right so the left side of your face is aligned with the left side of his, and look him in the eye. Just don't turn into a stage-five clinger and stare at him as though you were trying to bore holes through the poor guy's skull.
6. Use The W Word
Saying certain words can actually make you more into each other. As Britton explains, women respond to hearing the word "love" because they like to feel cared for. Men respond to "want" because it makes them feel needed and desired. During sex, tell him something like "I want you to touch me there"(ideally, this will inspire him to deliver!) or "I've been wanting this all day."
7. Be Still Together
Get on top and with him inside you, stay almost completely motionless for several seconds. Then, begin rhythmically squeezing your PC muscles (they're the ones you contract to stop the flow of urine). Resist rocking or thrusting for another minute or two; instead, just look at each other, say sexy things, and stroke each other's chests and thighs. It's torturous—in a good way—but by letting the anticipation build, it'll feel that much more incredible when you finally do start moving.
8. Hold On
Right when one of you is about to orgasm, intensify the moment by pressing your bodies even closer. If you're in the missionary position, wrap your arms around his back and pull the entire length of his body against yours. If you're on top, have him grip your hips and draw them more tightly toward his. You totally lose control when you have an orgasm, so doing this "brings you both back into the present and acknowledges that you're together," Davidson says.
Afterward, while you're still basking in the romantic glow, put on Barry White's greatest hits and read him a love poem. JUST KIDDING about that last part! A hotter ending to try: Slowly trail your fingers up and down each other's arms or fall asleep resting your head on his chest or having him spoon you.
9. Try These Romantic Sex Positions
The Tangle. Have him sit cross-legged on the floor or the bed. Straddle him, wrapping your legs and arms around his back, and have him put his arms around you, too. Rock your intertwined bodies, allowing him to gently move in and out of you. As you lean back, he'll slide out a bit, and then as you lean toward him, he'll slide in more.
The Curve. Lie on your side with him behind you, so the back of your body is along the front of his body. Scoot your butt up into his pelvis, and let him enter you. Have him hold his arms over your chest and cup your breasts, squeezing you against him. Reach your arms back and grab his butt for even more physical contact.
The Float. Because warm water makes people feel relaxed and secure, having sex in the tub is highly intimate. Sit in a bath, facing each other. Have your guy lean back a bit, keeping his hands behind him on the bottom of the tub. Then, tell him to spread his legs apart and bend his knees slightly. While supporting yourself with your hands, lean back and prop your legs up on his shoulders. The buoyancy of the water will help you move back and forth.
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