Married At First Sight UK‘s resident ‘sexpert’ and love queen, Charlene Douglas, has revealed her top tips to save your sex life – one of which, every couple should know.
She’s joined up with high street lingerie and sex toy brand Ann Summers, to help advise Brits on how to make their relationships thrive.
Charlene has been a sex and relationships expert for 11 years – she explains one of the most common misconceptions is that if you love your partner, a relationship shouldn’t require effort:
‘For us to thrive in our jobs we attend training courses, learn from colleagues, and receive supervision from our managers.
‘How do we expect our relationships to grow and continue to provide us with fulfilment if we don’t put in the effort to make them better?’ – read on for her top three tips.
1. Introduce sex toys to open up conversations about pleasure
The expert claims that investing in toys can ‘save your sex life’, and couples should set aside time to discuss the bad aspects of their relationship.
They don’t just bring pleasure, they open up conversations about sex and what turns you on.
Charlene says: ‘For a relationship to thrive and not just survive, it’s important to regularly add something new.
‘The same routine every day can become stale and boring. Toys add a little bit of spice to your sex life, creating different sensations in your bodies that can enhance your sexual experience and make your sex life more exciting.
She would advise you and your partner to choose toys together and even gave her recommendation: ‘My favourite toy has to be the power bullet set as it’s a great way for people with vulvas to explore different sensations with the help of the different textured heads.
‘Partner A can then caress other parts of Partner B’s body, as the toy is being used.’
2. Maintain a healthy sex life through communication and emotional intimacy
Charlene’s second piece of advice is that communication is key to a healthy sex life.
According to Ann Summers, recent research shows only 55% of women and 43% of men report being sexually satisfied in relationships longer than three years.
The MAFS expert recommends to ‘agree a suitable time when there are no distractions to have a discussion about your sex life.’
She explained ‘Have a think about what turns you on and off and share with each other. Commit to building emotional intimacy first by arranging fun date nights.
‘In the bedroom, build up to exploring each other’s bodies through massage and try different ways to experience pleasure. For example, with sex toys or audio erotica’.
3. Compromise is a must for compatibility
Finally, you will struggle to find someone you agree with on everything, so you need to be able to compromise and handle your difference
Charlene explains that from her experience overseeing new couples in MAFS, compromise is the most important thing:
‘It’s important that couples have the same commitment to learning how to be a better lover and partner every day. A willingness to grow and compromise is vital.’
She added that resolving conflict in a healthy way is also extremely important, which means ‘No long silences or aggression, but instead learning how to apologise if a reaction to a partner was irrational or unreasonable, and being able to arrange a time to resolve conflict in a calm setting.’
The advice comes after the news that the male sex toy market is expected to reach nearly $40 billion within 10 years.
The idea that intimate pleasure is intrinsic to long-lasting, good health has sparked a host of online articles, products and even entire stores over the past few years.
Now, an upcoming array of products will be aimed at men. While male sex toys are not uncommon in the LGBTQ community, these types of items are not often aimed at heterosexual men.
The male sex toy market is expected to double from its current worth over the next decade – to around $39.39 billion, according to market research firm Future Market Insights.
The most popular products will range from the relatively tame vibrating rings, to the more adventurous prostate ‘ticklers’ and even mechanical masturbators.