Millennials are having less sex than previous generations. It could be that we’re so overworked that we don’t have the energy at the end of the day. It could be that hook-up apps make sex about the number, not the quality. It could be that we’re too stressed out about the state of the world to focus on ourselves. In all likelihood, it’s all those things and more — stuff we haven’t even considered. But sex is an important part of the human experience: It’s a way for humans to relieve stress and tension, and to connect with each other. And if we can all promise to do a little more of it, we might just find some of that tension melt away and connections form where they hadn’t been before.
So, here are a few ways to kick off this latest resolution — and some of them involve the magic of cannabis.
Buy Yourself a Toy (Or a Few)
It seems obvious, but buying yourself a sex toy is a must. For starters, it requires allocating money and time towards your sexual pleasure — and that’s a good thing. When your schedule gets complicated, you can easily forget to prioritize yourself. But beyond all the good that comes from making that effort alone, there’s the sexual pleasure that the toy provides. If it’s your first time buying a toy, go to a store before ordering online to get a feel for the products. And if you refuse to step foot in a real store — same! — then the Dame Fin is a great (and highly-rated) external vibrator to get started. If you’re looking for an internal vibrator, you can’t go wrong with the Gigi 2 from LELO. For people with penises, LELO also has the F1 Developer’s Kit Red, which comes with an app that allows you to modify the toy’s settings to your liking.
Experiment (Alone or With a Partner)
Not everybody wants the same things during sex, which is why sexual compatibility is such a big factor in relationships. But in order to figure out what you want (and don’t), it helps to be open-minded and respect your hard limits. Life is too short to have bad or boring sex. If you have a partner or multiple partners you trust, this means working with them. And if you don’t have a partner, cool. You absolutely don’t need a partner to find what gets you off. Toys and hands are powerful tools. Maybe click on that porn link you’ve been curious about — the one that deviates from the stuff you normally watch. Worst case: turn it off.
Practice Non-Sexual Self-Love
There’s a reason baths, flowers, and candles fall into the romantic camp. But not a single one of these feels out of context for people on a solo adventure either. If you like flowers, buying and maintaining a plant is fulfilling. If you have a bath, get in it. They’re a way to get clean, sure, but they’re also fun because of all the delicious products designed to elevate the ritual. Try running a meditative bath with CBD-infused Lord Jones bath salts or the Instagram-friendly CBD bath bombs from Life Elements. I also especially like the Silk Scrub by fur., a clean resurfacing treatment that helps prevent ingrown hairs and leaves you silky smooth.
Make Yourself Feel Sexy
My partner doesn’t care at all about lingerie. I could be wearing the most intricate, expensive set from Fleur Du Mal (they make cannabis lingerie, btw) and he would react pretty much the same as he does when I’m in a Calvin Klein bralette and underwear. But I still invest in lingerie, because it makes me feel good about myself. I do my makeup and put on cute underwear sometimes just to take pictures, without anyone in mind to send them to. I do it for me, because these things make me feel sexy. It doesn’t have to be lingerie or makeup, but find what makes you feel sexy and do it for yourself.
Get Yourself Comfortable—Really Comfortable
Sex is no fun when you’re not relaxed. If you’re constantly second-guessing yourself, it can be really nerve-wracking and unpleasant for everyone involved. So, getting comfortable—with your body, with your partner if you have one, but also overall physically and emotionally—is incredibly important. For some people, familiar scents help a lot. Try lighting candles or if you consume cannabis with THC, try that. Bonus: Cannabis is known to increase sexual desire. But even if you don’t like the effects of THC, CBD products like Lily CBD tincture or BEBOE’s CBD Calming Vaporizer have a strong anti-anxiety effect that can work for some. Sex is supposed to be fun and comfortable, not stressful.
Find the Right Tools for the Job
Having a bottle (or a few) of lube on-hand is crucial, even if you’re alone and using toys. For those looking for a water-based product, Necessaire’s “The Sex Gel” is a body-safe, Ph-balanced lubricant you can be sure to trust. If you’re comfortable with using cannabis-infused lubricants, Foria Awaken lube with CBD is awesome — I speak from leagues of personal experience. It doesn’t get users high, but it both lubricates and helps relax your privates. But do be aware that oil-based lubricants, like Foria, can break down latex, so you should opt for an alternative like polyisoprene, natural skins, or nitrile. If wetness isn’t an issue — lucky you! — check out a fun new accessory like Pillo, the alt wedge sex pillow.
Get Comfortable With Your Sexuality—Including Talking About It
Nobody will deny communication between sexual partners is crucial in order to make a sexual experience pleasurable, whether it be a dom/sub relationship or the most vanilla sex ever. Unfortunately, it’s still easy to internalize the stigma that comes with taking possession of your sexuality, and most often that manifests as an absence of communication. Whether it be a therapist, a partner, or a friend, try to get comfortable talking about sex out loud. Sometimes, even asking a partner for something simple like changing positions can be surprisingly difficult. But in the end, creating a dialogue around sex is rewarding: You actively battle stigma by being outspoken about your sexual pleasure, you get more comfortable connecting your sexuality with your identity, and you’ll have better sex.
Break Your Routine
Although it’s been a long time since “sex” was just penis-in-vagina intercourse, society has been slow to come around to the fluid nature of what sex can be. You don’t need a partner to enjoy sex. And if you do have a partner, you can have more than one at a time. Letting go of the idea that sex looks a certain way can open up whole new worlds of pleasure. If you have a partner, spend a night just going down on each other. If you don’t have a partner, maybe try playing with a starter anal toy like Lovehoney’s Beginner’s Beads. Just let go of, and play around with, your expectations.
Consider Asking a Professional For Help
There are plenty of reasons a person can experience low libido. Certain medications, menopause, and stress are all things that can dampen sex drive. If you find that it’s a persistent problem and home remedies don’t work, a doctor might be a good bet. There’s a lot of internalized shame that comes along with feeling like you need to see a doctor, but there shouldn’t be. Low sexual desire is an incredibly common experience and can be totally normal — not all of us are hyper-sexual beings. You don’t even have to see your primary care physician, or have insurance. Websites like Cycles and Sex and Hers make it easy for people to get information. Hers even offers sexual health prescriptions like birth control without visiting a doctor’s office. There’s no need to feel shame in taking control of your sexuality.