It’s that time of year when we look simultaneously backwards and forwards. Reflecting on the year that passed and planning for (and worrying about *coughTrumpcough*) the year ahead. I love the peace that settles over the world between Christmas and New Year’s. My inbox, social media, & NYC itself quiet down. The beau has off from work. There’s a quiet, hopeful anticipation mixed in with a flurry of last minute, “I can squeeze in just one more thing!” energy. Best of all for me, I finally feel well enough (thanks to one of my Game Changers) to be fully present and savor this exquisite time.
To celebrate, I’m excited to share some of the things I used this year to make my sex life as intimate, exciting, & fulfilling as the rest of my relationship! Think: sexy books that inspired me, the toys that excited me the most (even if they aren’t my all-time favorites like these), and more. Plus my favorite blog posts + moments with you.
I can’t wait to hear which of these you decide to gift to yourself (you’ve been working hard on strengthening your relationship so you deserve it!) and the other women in your life too of course!
Here’s just a FEW of my favorite items from 2016!
Just click on each category to see my picks then click on the item’s name to purchase it easily.
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[accordion-item title=”Sexy Books”]
Come As You Are: The best book on female sexuality ever. Fun, easy to read, and full of practical (huzzah!) ways to create a more intimate, exciting, and fulfilling sex life. I personally use the exercises to deepen my intimacy and incorporate them into my workshops. Time and again I hear, “OMGosh I never would have figured that out! This book is beloved by sex geeks for a reason!
Luck on the Line by Zoraida Córdova: *fans self* This is one of the few contemporary romances that I fucking loved. Not liked, not thought was ok, but adored. Zoraida is a fantastic wordsmith and knows how to write a smokin’ hot, gets your heart pumping sex scenes. Be on the lookout for the kitchen scene and have your vibe handy…
Mistress by Amanda Quick: This book ya’ll. First of all the heroine’s name is Iphiginia and I still don’t know how to say it. Secondly, she’s a BAMF who toured Europe solo (not done during the Regency period), has already started & closed a successful school, runs a secret & successful real estate business, and is pretending to be mistress of an infamous and reclusive Earl. #girlpower The book is witty and sexy and action-packed and just damn fun.
Sex Criminals: At the end of last year I committed to reconnecting with my geeky side and started with this! It’s a fun little graphic romance novel about folks who stop time when they orgasm…and use said time to rob banks! Hilarious, witty, and surprisingly feminist + sex-positive given that it’s written & illustrated by two dudes. I highly recommend it as a good escape read!
A Promise of Fire by Amanda Bouchet: I haven’t finished this fantasy romance yet, but it’s one of the top 50 books I’ve ever read. The worldbuilding and character development is exquisite. You get just the right detail at just the right time so you’re never bored. Plus, there’s lots and lots of sexual tension & a looooong sloooow burn which I adore.
Bonus! Labyrinth Lost by Zoraida Coróva: It’s YA but Zoraida’s way with words will cause you to have all the feels. There’s romance and magic and a boy made of light and a surprise little romantic twist that made me literally cheer (at about 3 am when I finished the book because I couldn’t.put.it.down.).
[accordion-item title=”Guest Posts, Podcast, & Interviews”]
Passionate Monogamy: It’s Not an Oxymoron (GirlBoner Radio): My friend August and I jammed about practical ways to shake up your sex life & cultivate passion in your relationship; the power of choosing monogamy; why boring sex can be awesome; and, so much more. Bonus: lots of laughter + sex puns.
I Refuse to Let My Chronic Illness Get in the Way of My Sex Life (SheKnows): in which I get super vulnerable about my newly diagnosed health issues and how they impacted my sex life & relationship – including that time my hip popped out in the middle of sex.
The Real Reasons Lingerie Improves Your Sex Life (About.com): I geeked out with my friend + colleague Kimmay about the science behind lingerie’s power to get you & your honey all revved up.
The Bodylicious Project (Rachael Lancaster Wellness): my friend Rachael interviewed me for her interview series in which women share their powerful stories about body image. I share a huge part of my self love journey through body dysmorphia, binge eating disorder, and more. It’s a raw, frank convo and while it scared the shit out of me, I’m so grateful I did it.
6 Reasons Masturbating with Your Partner Can Be Hotter than Sex (SheKnows): some of the most common advice I give workshop attendees is to explore self-pleasure together. It’s super hot and intimate plus you show each other just how you like it. This post also includes my tips for getting started since with this potentially vulnerable (but so worth it) sexy activity.
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Rave: Just thinking about the Rave makes me tingly…! This toy is all sorts of powerful and amazing, with a ride range of rumbly vibrations. It’s assymetircal shape means every thrust and stroke feels different and makes it hard to miss your g-spot. Sexpert tip: if you aren’t fully aroused, the asymmetry can feel uncomfortable. I recommend using Rave as a finisher – when you’re ready to get there, lube it up, insert, thrust, twist,and rock, and enjoy what comes next (hint: it’s you).
b-Vibe Vibrating Rimming Anal Plug: I love when sex & tech intersect and this toy perfectly embodies that. It’s a butt plug that stimulates rimming! The tip vibrates while the part closest to your anal opening has rotating beads (don’t worry – you can control them separately). The toy also has a remote control – no need to turn into a pretzel trying to change the setting! One note: this toy is pretty large and definitely not a first timer’s butt toy. If that’s what you want & need, I recommend the Perfect Anal Plug Kit.
Read more: Anal Tips for Beginners
Rumble: Oh wand vibrators how I love-hate thee (although I feature one on my list of all time fave sex toys). You tend to be too big, too heavy, too bulky, too hard to hold, numbingly strong, & nonsensical to use. Not the Rumble! It’s lightweight, strong without burning your clit of, & so easy to hold and use. #practicalpleasure at it’s finest.
Sync: This update of the classic couples’ vibe is fully adjustable for a custom and comfortable fit. It’s two adjustable points let you better target your g-spot and clit with more or less pressure – whatever you like! This makes it more comfy to use and helps the toy stay in place when you change positions.
Womanizer W100: Rather than vibrating, the Womanizer gently sucks on your clit, surrounding it with gentle, pulsing sensations that make it it easier to experience multiple orgasms without the worry of overstimulation! The W100 is the mid-priced option and IMO, the best bang for your buck. It’s worth the extra $ over the Pro40 and has the best parts of the W500.
[accordion-item title=”Bra Brands & Bras”]
Over the last 2.5 years of our friendship, my friend Kimmay has taught me the importance of a well-fitted, high quality, supportive bra. Wearing one helps me feel more confident (and therefore sexy). Plus they’re way more comfy as in I forget I’m wearing a bra. And did I mention my rack looks amazing? Oh yeah.
Natori: I stumbled upon Natori two years ago when I had my first bra fitting and I’ve been a devotee ever since. Their bras are so well-made and sexy and comfortable – the lingerie embodiment of #freedominpleasure! Yes, they cost a bit more but if you take care of them, they’ll last way longer than your cheap bras. My personal fave is the Feathers.
Wacoal: Ditto everything I said about Natori except Wacoal is slightly more utilitarian and lower-priced. The keyword for both those descriptors is slightly! I’m currently lusting after the Lace Affair in green because it’s a softcup, non-underwire bra that’s super supportive. What sorcery is this?!
B’Tempted: B’Tempted is Wacoal’s younger, hipper, & more afforadable brand. (Can we talk about how I love when brands give you a variety of accessible options?!) Still high quality and with brighter colors and trendier styles. I’m obsessed with my Bella Balconette in Blithe.
Anita: My Anita sports bra it’s the best one I’ve ever adorned myself with. It keeps my girls in place without causing the dreaded uniboob or digging into my skin. I feel so confident in it that I took my shirt off during yoga for the first time last week! I love that that they offer a front-close sports bra because on high pain days, it’s hard for me to pull a “regular” one over my head.
[accordion-item title=”Life Changers”]
Macbook Air: This magically lightweight powerhouse made it possible for me to bring you #freedominpleasure from all over the US! It’s light enough that even my injured, arthritic body can carry it easily. Also, the first time my mom saw it she went bananas a la, “OMG HOW IS THAT A COMPUTER IT’S NOT BIG ENOUGH?!” and it was one of my favorite moments with her this year!
Humira: the day I started Humira, so many people told me, “your life is about to change for the better!” I was terrified and they were excited. They were right. Despite my ongoing dislike of being on meds that suppress my immune system, despite my mistrust of Big Pharma – these painful injections have lowered my overall pain and lifted the heavy veil of brain fog that I spent most of the year fighting. I’m able to work regularly, workout moderately, and even enjoyed my first espresso-based beverage (Crohn’s + caffeine can be no fun) this week! Slowly but surely, and with improvements, I’m coming back to myself.
Instagram stories: I just love filming fun, quickie videos with different sex & relationship tips, bringing you with me on dates (does that sound weird? you know what I mean!) and other ways of giving you a behind the scenes glimspe into my sex geek-filled days!
Public workshops: I started teaching private workshops in 2009. In 2014 and 2015, I presented at a ton of academic and sex-positive conferences. And in 2016 I started teaching workshops that were open to the public! I did 2 in NYC and 2 in San Francisco. And I’m planning a LOT more in 2017.
PS: I still do private workshops for birthdays, bachelorettes, divorce parties, & girls/couples night in!
Click here to book yours.
SoulSeconds.com: Meditation made for busy people? YES PLEASE. I do Soul Start Morning Meditation every day and never get tired of Natalie reminding me that I am limitless. I especially love that there are meditations for different situations so you can quickly find what you need.
[accordion-item title=”Blog Posts”]
These aren’t necessarily the most viewed posts, but the ones I loved writing + sharing the most.
11 Tips for Fighting Fair with Your Partner + Why It’s Important: I had 3 drafts of this post written when the opportunity to collaborate with HBO came and OMFG it was a match made in heaven. Be sure to read the comments where others share their tips too!
My Favorite Day Date: the super simple + customizable date “template” I use over and over again.
What to Do If You Try Something New in Bed & They Don’t Like It: A workshop attendee asked this very question…this is my answer. Hint: the same thing you do when this happens outside the bedroom.
A Love Letter to My Body (and Yours): Inspired by a nekkid selfie I took in LA, this post flowed through me one morning during my daily journaling and I just knew we all needed to hear it.
Teach Them How to Please You – How to Get the Sex You Want: Another workshop attendee question (love these!). What I love most about this post is that I give you a low-tech and high-tech way to answer this question. Both are super simple and don’t take much time, making them practical AF.
Happy New Year, dear pleasure seekers. See you on the flipside for even more practical + accessible ways to create a more intimate, exciting, & fulfilling sex life.