How to Get Everything You Want (in Bed)
Dying to teach your man to touch you in all the
ways you secretly crave
without a put-him-on-the-spot sex talk?
Clue in to our embarrassment-free satisfaction strategy.
" I always thought I had a great sex life," remembers Amy Blumenfeld,* a 28-year-old stockbroker. "I usually had orgasms during oral sex though never while doing the deed." Then she met Jack, a guy who encouraged her to voice her each and every sensation. "Jack made it clear that he loved it when I was supervocal in bed, so I started oohing and aahing in direct proportion to how much he was turning me on. And an amazing thing happened: He got so tuned in to my pleasure purrs that he starting doing new moves I had never even fantasized about. One night, when we were in the missionary position, he lifted my pelvis. I moaned and he lifted even higher. I had the most incredible orgasm of my life!"
Like Amy, many of us settle for second-best sex, not only because we don't know how to communicate to our partners what pushes our pleasure buttons but because we're not always sure what those buttons are. Maybe that explains why a new study found that 20 percent of young women have trouble getting turned on and 26 percent are unable to reach orgasm. "Sure, we all wish guys psychically knew how to touch, lick and stroke us every time -- then we wouldn't have to explain our turn-ons to them," says Sari Locker, author of The Complete Idiot's Guide to Amazing Sex (Alpha Books, 1999). "But you can't expect even the most experienced man to be a mind reader. You have to overcome your awkwardness, take charge of your between-the-sheets pleasure and show him how to satisfy you."
That's why we've consulted experts and real men and women alike to put together Cosmo's complete guide to carnal communication. Read on to discover the tricks that could take your lust life from so-so to oh-oh-oh and the sneaky, sexy ways you can clue him in to your cravings.
*Some names have been changed.
The Shape That'll Make You Shudder
Stop-the-press sex shocker: Guys and girls have different ways of warming up pre-passion. "Women are aware of their erogenous zones -- the backs of the legs, neck and behind the ears -- and they generally need these areas to be stimulated before they can become aroused below the belt," explains Laura Berman, Ph.D., sex therapist and codirector of the Women's Sexual Health Clinic at Boston University Medical Center. "Men, on the other hand, focus mainly on their erection as the center of their sexuality -- they often don't realize how much touching their partners need before being hot enough for more advanced foreplay, let alone intercourse."
So how can you make sure you secure these crucial pre-sex strokes? Nudge him to give you "the swirl," recommends Lou Paget, author of How to Be a Great Lover (Broadway Books, 1999). "To use this subtle seductive move, he traces slow, soft circles and waves along your forearms, neck, the palms of your hands and any other sensitive body spot," Paget explains. "His circular touch electrifies the nerves under your skin more than if he just ran his fingers up and down in a straight line."
Caitlin Barnes and her boyfriend use the swirl as a warm-up technique to prep for a night of slow, steady arousal. "After experimenting with different speeds and directions, I found the most incredible sensation occurs when my guy traces circles on my breasts -- gradually getting closer and closer to my nipples," says the 25-year-old receptionist. "He'll also make incredibly tiny circular motions using just one fingertip on my clitoris. After a few minutes of such slow ecstasy, we're both primed for the next sexy step."
The Three Signs He Must Ignore
The female body can be pretty puzzling -- even for women. So imagine how hard it is for men to try to navigate, and you'll see why he needs all the help he can get. "When we first started dating, my now-fiancé was convinced I didn't like it when he nibbled my nipples because they did not always become erect after several minutes of mouth play," recalls Kelley Owens, a 30-year-old attorney. "As a result of his misreading my signs, he stopped kissing and squeezing my breasts -- two things I totally love. Finally, I had to reassure him that whether my 'high beams' were on or not didn't necessarily have anything to do with how hot I was down below."
Your nipples aren't the only hot spots that can refuse to stand at attention when you're aroused. Just when it seems you're ready to reach a mega-orgasm, your clitoris can suddenly decide to play hide-and-seek and disappear -- though really it's just retreated a bit beneath its tiny hood (a totally normal occurrence). "This used to freak my fiancé out when he was giving me oral sex. He would assume I had lost interest and stop stimulating me just when I was dying for him to keep going," recalls Julia Crandall, a 26-year-old law student. "I had to explain to him that the reason it retracts is because I'm so close to climaxing, not because I'm tired of it."
The final physical response your guy should interpret cautiously: the amount of lubrication you produce. Experts say that how wet you are doesn't necessarily reflect how turned on you are, just as it's also true that sometimes your body effortlessly produces motion lotion when you're not ready to rumble. "Many men I've talked to assume that because their partners have become moist, it's time to move on to the main event," explains sex therapist Berman. The bottom line: Tell him to heed your verbal and tactile clues first, then pay attention to your body's responses.
The Two Things He Needs to Do Simultaneously
Heidi Cohen, a 25-year-old set designer, wanted to introduce her boyfriend to foreplay her way. "Paul's foreplay moves were hit or miss -- sometimes I'd climax when he went down on me; other times his tongue would just leave me numb." The answer to Heidi's pre-deed dilemma? She encouraged her man to try two moves at the same time -- a step Berman says works orgasm magic because it provides varied stimulation. "The combination of two different sensations -- the softness of his mouth plus the firmer touch of his fingers -- is a really pleasurable move for lots of women," she explains.
But if you're too self-conscious to ask outright for the foreplay you're looking for, try this subtle sex strategy: "Put his forefinger in your mouth and suck on it slowly, mimicking the exact motion you'd like him to use on you with your tongue," Paget advises. "Say, 'This is what I want you to do between my legs -- and it would be incredible if you touched me with your fingertips at the same time.'"
Three Words That'll Bring on Your Biggest O Ever
Forget raunchy pillow talk and four-letter words. The language that will really float your man's sexual boat is -- surprise! -- passionate praising of his performance. Phrases like "I love that"; "Oh, my God!"; and the clear, concise "Yes, yes, yes!" work so well because sexy speech lets a guy know without question that he's turning you on. "Men are desperate to please. Once he knows he's rocking your world, trust me, he won't want to stop -- and he'll remember his winning moves next time," author Locker explains. Your outrageous oral ovations will also show how enthusiastic you are about being naked with him. Beth Wachs, 28, a writer, becomes a one-woman cheering squad. She yelps, screams, whimpers, moans -- and one time even beat her fists into the headboard of the bed. "All my verbal cues coax Tom to continue the moves that will send me over the top," she explains.
The Lift That Will Send You Soaring
" Having an orgasm during intercourse has always eluded me," remarks Kathy Grimm, a 28-year-old psychologist. "My man and I try tons of positions, but we've never found an angle that works for both of us. Usually, Pete thrusts until he just can't hold back any longer -- and I'm left longing." Kathy is not alone -- according to one study, up to 70 percent of young women are unable climax through intercourse. The solution: getting both your bodies in the perfect pleasure position. "Situating yourself so that your pelvis is tilted lets your partner penetrate you at an angle that allows his penis to rub against your G-spot," Berman explains. "For many women, lying in the missionary position with a few pillows under their butt provides the perfect pelvic tilt."
But it isn't just your tilt that affects whether or not you orgasm -- it's also how you flex during sex. "Doing Kegel exercises -- contracting and releasing the muscles that stop urine flow -- while your guy is thrusting will cause your vaginal canal to contract and create a sudden squeezing sensation on his penis," Berman explains. Your flex can also redirect his penis so it hits your supersensitive G-spot directly. The result? "A powerful orgasm even for women who have never climaxed during intercourse before," she says. Another upside to flexing and pelvic positioning? Both strategies can help you and your man achieve the holy grail of intercourse: simultaneous orgasm. Why? By doing Kegels, you have more control of the passion pacing. Your squeezing can slow down his rapid thrusting while it heightens your G-spot stimulation.
Deanna Dunn, a 30-year-old editor, is a true believer in the simultaneous Big O. "First, we settled on a sex style that allowed Sam to enter me at the perfect angle: sex from behind with my hips up high so his penis could nudge my G-spot. Once he was inside, I began contracting my muscles and was able to feel his penis against the front wall of my vagina. Each time I clamped down was a subtle signal for him to steady himself until I was ready to peak, too. Several mind-blowing minutes later -- wow! It was our first time climaxing in sync but definitely not the last!"