Suffering a libido malfunction? We all experience a dead sex drive at some point during womanhood. Let's be honest, sometimes life just gets in the way. Stress, kids, too much work, fatigue, they can all cause your libido to go into hibernation.
Don't fret - you aren't alone. There are plenty of things you can do to ignite the lust back into your life and banish that waning libido for good.
To get the best out of sex, we tapped into the brains of sex experts and nutritionists alike to find out what you can do to revive your sexual desire - the natural way.
From sensual aromatherapy to frisky food here are the best tips and tricks to put the sizzle back back into the bedroom stat.
1. Dance your heart out.
Get your libido going with a boogie down. Not only is dancing a great form of exercise, but it will help build your self-confidence in the bedroom too.
Durex Embrace’s Sex & Relationship Expert, Susan Quilliam says, “Find a form of exercise - like dancing - that you can do regularly and enthusiastically.”
Moving your body and shaking that booty can only help you to connect back with your body and can help you feel sexier too. Whether it's down to toning up through dance or simply discovering that your body can do things (like coordinate itself), dancing is a sure fire way to get your mojo buzzing again.
Why not try a salsa class? It’s intimate, burns off tons of calories and is undeniably sexy!
2. Get plenty of shut-eye.
If you're fatigued or lethargic then the last thing you'll want to do when you get in the bedroom is have sex. If you’re known to be a night owl (working late, finishing that to do list, or staying up watching Girls) it’s time to start changing your ways.
Aim for 8 hours of sleep each night. Light some candles, hum to yourself to sleep, count sheep - anything you need to get more kip! Having a well rested body will ensure the rest of you (like your mojo) is able to function better.
3. Reduce your stress levels.
Stress has never been a good friend of ours. Constant worrying, poor judgement, memory problems and depression are only a few of the many different ways stress can affect us.
Susan says, “High stress levels don't just result in our bodies prioritizing relaxation over strenuous passion. Stress also makes us less able to concentrate on sex and to lose ourselves in the moment.
“Unwind from the day's pressures before you start to make love and you'll find yourself feeling more sensation and so much more desire.”
To de-stress your life go for walk, take up meditation or start smooching your sweetheart (it releases feel-good endorphins).
4. Take your time.
If you're an on-the-go type of person and have no time for getting hot and heavy you'll need to start scheduling sex into your diary.
“A recent DurexEmbrace survey reports that two-thirds of people feel that their career, housework and childcare leave them no time for intimacy. So carve out opportunities for lovemaking - diarize them if necessary - so you have at least an hour to concentrate on pleasure." says Susan.
It's not very romantic, but once you start reeking the benefits you'll see your sexual increase desire tenfold.
5. Get touchy feely.
Without a physical connection your sexual intimacy is close to none. Small meaningful gestures like running kisses down your man's chest or holding his hand while you're spending time together will help build more physical attraction in your relationship.
Susan says, “Often we don't feel like sex because we've lost a physical connection with our partner. Start with tiny steps - a hug on waking, a kiss before bedtime. Reach out for each other. Hold hands while watching the box sets. And if at all possible, sleep naked.”
6. Spark emotions.
The key to lasting love and sex is building an emotional connection together. Deepening your relationship through emotional connection can take your sex live's to a whole 'nother level.
“If the bond between you and your partner fades, desire will probably fade too. Make sure you're still emotionally connected by making regular opportunities to talk, share, confide worries, hopes and dreams." says Susan.
Date nights do actually work!
7. Stop worrying about your body.
Cellulite? Flat-chested? Women have always been known to feel a little self-conscious at times. Embrace your insecurities and consider them unique to you.
Susan says, “The more you like your appearance, the more you'll be able to let go and feel desire. The DurexEmbrace survey suggests that women who feel best about their bodies are those who have most physical contact with their partners.”
Grow to love yourself. Your confidence will drive him crazy.
8. Make it with massage.
Consider sensual oils as an investment for better sex. Taking turns to massage each other will put you in touch with your sexual energy.
“A once-a-week massage is a great way to keep desire alive even if you haven't the opportunity to follow that up with something more raunchy.” says Susan.
Add a little music to the background and start putting the fun back into sex.
9. Focus on foreplay.
Improve your sexual foreplay by discovering new techniques and giving yourselves more time before sex (i.e. try not to jump him!). Trust us - your sex drive will be through the roof.
Susan says, “Whole body massage, genital stroking and licking, delaying your orgasm - all of these will remind your libido what good sex is really like. And, they'll build your arousal levels so that when climax happens it's an explosion not a whimper!”
10. Ring the changes.
A study at Ruttger's University suggests that novelty initiates sexual desire, which in turn, triggers more sexual activity.
“Try different positions, locations and scenarios. Flick through your favorite sex manual together and find things that you've never done but both want to try.” says Susan.
Whether you experiment with kinky sex, spanking, new positions or fantasy role play, thinking outside the box will be stimulating in more ways that one.
11. Be more selfish
Stop obsessing about pleasing your man in bed all of the time. If all you do is sex it up for his pleasure only then you lose out on your own sexual demands which eventually burns-out your sexual appetite altogether.
Susan says, “It's very easy to slip into a habit of passing up on your climax, or focussing on your partner's pleasure rather than your own. But if you're not feeling fulfilled then naturally you'll lose motivation for sex; update your partner on what really does it for you and make sure you're getting what you want at least 90% of the time.”
12. Get holistic.
It's a little known secret certain aromas can naturally help revive your sexual appetite.
Base Formula’s consultant aromatherapist, Joannah Metcalfe says, “Modern day life can lead to a lack of sexual desire. Aromatherapy can be an effective way to enhance our libido and regain some of that lost sexual desire.
"This concept is nothing new, as history tells us that essential oils have been used for 1000s of years to aid love and romance and to ignite passion!"
Jasmine, Neroli, Sandalwood and ylang-ylang are all scientifically proven to boost sexual arousal. So add a few drops of oil to your bath or ensure the oils are properly diluted in a base oil, cream, lotion or gel and slather it all over - you've nothing to lose!
13. Try pelvic exercise.
If pregnancy or hormonal changes have taken their toll on your libido, get your sex life back on track by putting your pelvic muscles to work.
“In many ways, we have failed women by not telling them how to do these exercises correctly. The secret – as identified by Dr. Arnold Kegel in 1952 – is to improve muscle tone by exercising against resistance." says GP and sexual health expert, Dr. Sarah Brewer.
Improve the your vulva's muscles by doing pelvic floor exercises yourself or with some extra help using pelvic toning equipment like The PelvicToner. It's super-easy and effective!
14. Read more erotica.
There's a lot of hype around about this year's filming of Fifty Shades of Grey, but until it's released why not open your mind to some new fantasies by reading written erotica?
A new website launching this Valentine's Day, Frolicme.com, promises to stimulate your senses in every possible way including your sexual urge.
The website features short stories and beautiful imagery that eventually become available as an adult screening a days later. This is definitely the first of many!
15. Go Omega-3 crazy.
Help kick-start your libido with rich Omega-3 rich foods! From salmon to pumpkin seeds to walnuts, these fatty essential acids will help get your sex hormone production back to it's peak.
NutriCentre's expert nutritionist, Shona Wilkonson says, "Omega 3 is a multi-tasking hero, enhancing your mood, helping balance your hormones, and aiding the healthy production of sex hormones.
'It fights the build-up of plaque in the arteries, thereby improving circulation and increasing sensation. Omega-3 fatty acids also help with sexual response, raising dopamine levels in the brain that trigger arousal.’’
Try eating Omega rich foods or reach for Verywise's Omega-3 nutrient shot. Mix it in your smoothie for a libido-enhancing refreshment! Yum.
16. Eat more chili
Hot chili peppers aren't only responsible for bringing spice to our dinner plates, they're known to turn up the heat in the sex department too.
Chief nutritionist for Atkins, Linda O’Byrne says, “These hot peppers contain a compound called capsaicin, which is what gives peppers their heat and can increase the heart rate and blood flow, which can, in turn, lead to sexual arousal.”
Her tip? Add one chopped chilli pepper to diced tomatoes, coriander and spring onion and allow to sit for a few hours before eating, for a salsa with a sexy kick.
17. Scoff oysters.
If you're looking for ways to spice up your sex life, whip up a dish of oysters for your sweetheart.
“As oysters are high in both protein and zinc, they increase testosterone production. Having increased testosterone – whether male or female – leads to increased libido.” Linda says.
Our fave mood-enhancing starter of all time? Oysters a la Russe.
18. Eat more Italian food.
Almost every Italian meal has basil in it, whether it's the core to the meal or just sprinkled on top a true Italian could never imagine a basil-less dish. And for good reason too...
Linda says, “This herb has been shown to stimulate libido and increase fertility. It is a good source of both iron and magnesium, which promote cardiovascular health by prompting muscles and blood vessels to relax, thus improving blood flow and making for the increased desire and ability to make love.”
No wonder we've got the hots for Italians!
19. Get your B vitamins.
Upping your B vitamins will help regulate your sex organs and spring them back into action.
Shona says, ‘’The amount of vitamin B in the body correlates with the amount of sex hormones released. Any deficiencies can lead to lethargy and fatigue – meaning more sleep and less sex!’’
For a good dose of B vitamins opt for bananas or eggs for breakfast.
Or for a quick fix try Quest Excellence's Mega B Complex to give you that bedroom B booster you need.
20. Watch your alcohol consumption.
Most people can vouch that alcohol gets in the way of great sex. It's true, after having one too many glasses of wine we're canoodling our lover, but alcohol is NOT an aphrodisiac, in fact, it's anything but.
Heavy drinking hampers your sexual performance with women experiencing reduced lubrication and increased difficulty achieving an orgasm.
Rule of thumb: Drunken sex is bad sex. Avoid drinking more than two to three units per day to keep your sex drive and performance in good order.
Know of any more natural tips to boost libido? Tweet us @wewomenUSA