Two of the most common questions we receive from readers here at Men’s Health are whether penis enlargement products really work and how to last longer in bed. But if you’re worried about penis size or duration of intercourse for your partner’s sake, you can relax.
When you ask women what they really want in bed, their answers usually can’t be measured with a ruler or a stopwatch. (We actually posed that open-ended question to 20 women recently, and not one of them mentioned penis size or duration.)
Now another new survey sheds light on what women truly desire. In the poll commissioned by sex toy company Pure Romance, market researchers asked 1,000 married men and women to choose which sexual acts would improve their marriage. Each of the top answers is an easy thing you can do tonight to make any relationship hotter - no sketchy supplements or baseball stats required.
WHAT SHE WANTS IN BED: BETTER COMMUNICATION
About 62 percent of women said that better communication would improve their marriages, according to the survey results. They weren’t alone, though. About half of the men surveyed also agreed.
In any relationship, if you want a satisfying, passionate sex life, you have to let your partner know what you like and you need to know what she likes, says Moushumi Ghose, a licensed marriage therapist and author of Classic Positions Reinvented.
But talking about sex can feel a little awkward, even if you’ve been together for a while. If you want to get the conversation going, bring up your own desires so she knows you want to talk about it, suggests Ghose.
Then, let her know that you’re willing to do anything you can to give her the pleasure she wants. Try to bring it up during a relaxed time, like after you eat dinner or while you’re taking a walk alone - just be as genuine and honest as possible, says Ghose.
WHAT SHE WANTS IN BED: MORE FOREPLAY
There’s a lot more to sex than just intercourse and orgasm, says Ghose, so it should come as no surprise that 58 percent of women wouldn’t mind if you focused more on foreplay.
“What is typically thought of as foreplay - like kissing, sensual touching, and oral sex - are all part of sex. Intercourse and orgasm is the icing on the cake,” she says.
When you take the time to excite her physically, her body will produce more vaginal lubrication, which plays a big role in making sex feel more comfortable and pleasurable for her, says sex researcher Dr Debby Herbenick.
You also don’t need to be in bed to turn her on: Anything you do that builds arousal counts as foreplay, like what you text her throughout the day, the compliments you give her, the dinner that you plan for her, and the sexy pictures that you send her, says Ghose.
WHAT SHE WANTS IN BED: SEX TOYS
Sex toys have a lot to offer in the bedroom—and 40 percent of women surveyed agree.
Too often men feel threatened by the idea of sex toys, thinking that it says something about their manhood or lack of it, says Ghose. But sex toys can add some fun and creativity to otherwise ordinary sex positions. For example, in positions that don’t give her clitoris an opportunity to naturally rub against you, using a smaller vibrator (like this one) can give her more manual stimulation, which many women need in order to reach orgasm.
If you want to try something that will feel amazing for both you and her, a vibrating penis ring should get the job done, says Ghose.
There are countless types to choose from, though, so take some time to pick one out together.
WHAT SHE WANTS IN BED: FANTASIES
Sexual fantasies and fetishes are typically taboo, says Ghose, but 40 percent of women reported that acting one out would make their marriage better. Plus, 50 percent of men were into the idea, too.
This doesn’t work for everyone, says Ghose, but if you’re into exploring new things, acting out a fantasy can become an intimate bonding experience.
Fantasies don’t always include bondage and whips. Sometimes it just means she wants to try something new, like talking dirty or having sex in a new place. However, she may be too shy to bring her fantasy up - but that’s probably why better communication was No. 1 on the women’s wish lists.
“For some, it is just a matter of building trust. People are very used to being shamed, ridiculed, and criticised for their fantasies and fetishes,” says Ghose. “If a guy wants his partner to share her fantasies with him, he needs to be open about his fantasies as well.”
WHAT SHE WANTS IN BED: ROLE PLAY
Thirty-five percent of women reported that sexual role-playing would improve their marriages.
“Role playing is when two people pretend to be something that they’re not,” she explains. “They may act out a scenario as two different people, or they may even dress the part. Some couples even go as far as to meet in public and do the whole thing from the start, creating an entire story around a role play.” It can be fun and empowering for couples who need to heat things up, she says.
Role play is different from acting out a sexual fantasy, because sometimes fantasies or fetishes don’t require you to change your role, says Ghose.
Talk to her about a scenario you’re interested in, suggests Ghose. Ask her if she’s ever wanted to be someone else, or if the idea of playing a different role turns her on. After discussing it, you can try acting out a scenario you agree on. Consent is key here, says Ghose.
“I would stay away from just trying to do it without her knowledge,” he explains. “She might like it, but she might not. Planning it out and asking her in advance is a much better way to foster honest communication.”