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Thanks to the magic of WiFi, pornography is literally streaming through your body at any given moment. Unfortunately, being a conduit for porn doesn’t make it any easier to talk dirty if shyness and uncertainty are holding you back.

In fact, one of the first steps to developing a sexy vocabulary is learning to go beyond porn. “So many people feel really dorky [about talking dirty],” says Carlyle Jansen, founder of Toronto’s Good For Her, a sexuality store and workshop centre. “They’re like, ‘You want me to say what they say in porn films?’” But the key to successful sexy talk, she says, is finding the words that are genuine for you.

Hit the right tone, and you’ll not only be talking your way to better sex, you’ll be forging a better relationship. Seriously. “Communication always makes sex better,” says Jansen, and learning how to give and receive sexy suggestions can lead to better conversations all around. It’s also a super-hot way to navigate consent and can do wonders for your sexual self-esteem. “Knowing how to talk dirty and feeling confident while doing it are indicators that you own your sexuality without shame, guilt, or judgment,” says Ginger Bentham, co-host of the Life on the Swingset and Intellectual Foreplay podcasts. “And if your lovers are long-distance,” she adds, “talking dirty and sexting are essential.”

distance

Not sure where to start? Thankfully Jansen and Bentham are. Here are their tips for conquering embarrassment and finding your inner vixen’s voice…and vocabulary:

Lay down some ground words

“The best way to connect with partners is to ask what words are sexiest for them,” says Bentham. “[Knowing] what your lovers like to hear helps you feel confident when you are saying the words.” Jansen agrees, and suggests brainstorming words together as a sexy exercise. “Come up with a vocabulary that feels genuine to you,” she says. “So if you and/or your partner have a penis, do you want to talk about it as a penis? Or is it a cock? Or is it a dick? Or is it monsieur?” Once you’ve described body parts, consider verbs, adjectives and adverbs. “Do you like fucking or making love, or do you like ravishing or taking? What kind of words for intercourse do you like? How do you like to talk about oral sex?” And if all this sounds like too much to get your mouth around, try writing it down instead. “I love email or texting for people who are shy,” says Jansen.

Focus on the action

“One of the main principles of talking dirty is to say what you want to do, what you are doing and what you did,” suggests Jansen. Bentham agrees that a play-by-play is where it’s at: “[Start] with phrases like, ‘It turns me on so much to feel your hard body under my hands.’ Those types of tame phrases can rev you up to get a bit dirtier the more aroused you get.”

ross

Talking about your feelings can also be sexy, adds Jansen. ‘I love tasting you’, ‘You feel so hot’ and ‘You turn me on so much’ are excellent starter phrases.

Try it on before you get it on

It’s totally cool to prepare, says Jansen. Imagine what you want to do in the bedroom, how you want to talk about it and bank a few phrases in advance.

Remember, practice makes pervert

“Just like any other sexy skill, dirty talk takes practice,” says Bentham, “so find ways to do it as much as possible. The more you practice, the more fun it gets!”

Don’t get your knickers in a twist

“Sex is supposed to be playful,” says Jansen. It’s easy to worry yourself about doing things the “right” way, but she suggests an exploratory, trial-and-error approach. You’ll probably have a few laughable moments along the way, but that’s all part of the adventure.

band camp

Want more? If you’re in the Toronto area, check out Good for Her’s “Sexual Communication” and “Steamy Sex for Couples” workshops, or access Ginger Bentham’s “Talking Dirty: Turning Your Filthy Thoughts Into Naughty Words” podcast online. For lovers who prefer a dirty read, Carlyle Jansen recommends Bonnie Gabriel’s The Fine Art of Erotic Talk and Dr. Ruth Neustifter’s The Nice Girl’s Guide to Talking Dirty.

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