The Benefits of Morning Sex Will Turn You Into An Early Riser
The early bird gets the worm and the orgasm!
For some, the best part of a lazy weekend morning in bed is the opportunity to log a little quality time with their partner (or themselves!), slip into another 30 mins of sleep, and then slowly enter the world with a post-O glow that eliminates all need for highlighter.
For others, the idea of getting it on in the morning is akin to an actual nightmare: A survey of 1,000 adults in relationships by Mattress Advisor found that 58 percent of women simply aren't interested in regular morning sex.
The thing is, morning sex can have some serious perks, and if you take time to eliminate all the roadblocks between you and amazing, pressure-free morning sex, you might start to realllly enjoy it. (And, in the days of WFH, no commute means you likely have slower mornings every morning, so now’s the perfect time to try.)
Here, experts dish on the benefits of morning sex and tips for making it even more pleasurable — even if you're a real monster in the morning.
1. You’re mentally more chilled out.
Following stressful work meetings, missed trains, fatigue from your workout, a lineup of texts you need to answer, and just the general run-down feeling after a day on the grind, and it’s no wonder that sex can be the last thing you want in the evening sometimes. But in the morning, your mental state is largely a blank slate. You’re (hopefully) well-rested and nothing has ruined your mood yet or tired you out.
And, ICYDK, stress is one of the biggest roadblocks to libido and orgasm. That's one reason why ideal conditions for sex are when both partners are rested and relaxed, says Megan Fleming, Ph.D., a licensed clinical psychologist, certified sex therapist, and Lovehoney expert. “Morning is usually a good time because, for some people, their mind isn't quite ‘on’ yet,” says Fleming. Whereas, in the evening, “depending on if you’re thinking about work or things that are stressful, that could be a turnoff. Some people have a hard time transitioning from work mode to being physically intimate.” But before you even get out of bed, you can at least pretend that the outside world doesn’t exist for a bit.
2. Your body is more relaxed, too.
That half-awake feeling isn’t just in your mind — it’s in your body, too. And, actually, it could have some great effects on your body’s sexual response. “It can be nice to still feel super relaxed and cuddly when you first wake up in the morning,” says Gigi Engle, C.S.E., C.S.C., A.C.S., a SKYN Condoms sex and intimacy expert and certified sex coach. “Receiving oral sex or sex with a sex toy or hand can be nice when you first wake up because your pelvic floor isn't contracting from stress and your heart rate is lower, which can assist in letting go and feeling more pleasure.”
3. You may have a higher sex drive.
Fun fact: “Testosterone, often called the hormone of desire, is highest in the morning,” says Hilda Hutcherson, M.D., professor of obstetrics and gynecology at Columbia University and author of Pleasure: A Woman's Guide to Getting the Sex You Want, Need and Deserve. That's true for both sexes, but “men, in particular, may experience peak sex drives in the morning, and have stronger and longer-lasting erections.” So if you have a male partner who struggles with sexual function (aka staying hard and reaching orgasm), the morning might be the perfect time to get it on.
Interestingly, according to a survey done by Lovehoney, men tend to have higher sex drives in the morning while women are more in the mood at night. The survey polled 2,300 adults and found that men reported preferring sex between 6 and 9 a.m. while women preferred it between 11 p.m. and 2 a.m. Specifically, men were the horniest at 7:54 in the morning while women were so at 11:21 at night. This could be because estrogen, another hormone responsible for sex drive in women, peaks at night, according to research in The Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism.
4. You’ll prep yourself for a fantastic day.
Whether or not you orgasm, you'll still get all the amazing health benefits of sex, including boosts in dopamine and serotonin, called "the happy hormones" for their ability to boost mood. Fun fact: The caffeine in coffee seems to trigger the release of these same hormones, so having morning sex is almost like getting the perks of a cup of joe before even getting out of bed. Indeed, the Mattress Advisor survey found that 53 percent of men and 45 percent of women say their day is more productive after having morning sex.
"The endorphins, aka feel good hormones, will help you start the day calm and in a better mood," agrees Dr. Hutcherson. "Sex decreases stress, too." And just think of the difference between waking to a blaring alarm clock or waking to roaming hands or lips — it's easy to see which starts your day on a sweeter note. (Worth noting: Consent is still important!)
5. It's a low-key workout.
"Sex is exercise," says Dr. Hutherson. "What better way to get your blood moving, joints lubricated, and your mind ready to tackle the challenges of the day? It's a good way to tone your muscles and may even help with weight loss." A 2013 study published in the journal PLoS ONE found that, in young and healthy couples, men burned an average of 4.2 calories per minute and women burned an average of 3.1 calories per minute — totaling about 101 calories and 69 calories, respectively, during a sex session lasting 25 minutes. (More here: How Many Calories Do You Really Burn During Sex?)
Starting your morning with movement (of the sexual or fitness variety) can have all sorts of perks: You could burn more fat, consume fewer unnecessary calories during the day, sleep better at night, and be more likely to be more active throughout the rest of the day.
6. It can be seriously intimate.
The just-woken-up version of yourself feels like the most real version of yourself. While that can be tough for people who struggle with being super intimate and vulnerable, if you can stand a little morning sex with your partner, you can really increase the emotional (and, obv, physical) intimacy between you.
“I think it's a great way to start your day,” says Fleming. “You get that feeling of connection and closeness, plus the benefits of physical touch first-thing.” Research shows that hugging for 20 seconds releases oxytocin — which is the attachment or the cuddle hormone — as does orgasm. “You get the benefits of that whether or not you have an orgasm," she says. "And then, certainly, orgasm can also give you a hit of the dopamine and oxytocin, all those feel-good chemicals."
Morning sex isn't necessarily a magic bullet to relationship bliss, but according to the Mattress Advisor survey, people who were satisfied with their relationship typically had more morning sex each month than dissatisfied respondents.
How to Enjoy Morning Sex More
If you and your partner can't get on the same morning sex train, don't stress. "It's really not uncommon: One person really likes morning sex, and one person really likes evening sex," says Fleming. "I rarely find people who are on the same page, so it's something you definitely have to negotiate."
Of course, the best way to do that is open, honest communication that focuses on the "wish or longing" (ex: "I'd love to have morning sex because I really love that moment to connect with you.") vs. the frustration ("You never want to have sex when I want to have sex."), says Fleming. Aside from voicing what you want in bed, there are other things you can do to make morning sex feel more accessible and enjoyable for both partners — no matter who's on Team Morning and who isn't.
"People should be aware of any turnoffs that they have, and think about what might they be able to change in their environment to turn that 'no' into a 'yes,'" says Fleming. In the words of sex educator and researcher Emily Nagoski, it's less about pressing hard on the gas and more about taking your foot off the brakes.
While feeling foggy and half-asleep can give morning sex a dreamy sort of quality, it also ups the chances that you'll be straight-up not in the mood. "What's usually going on with 'morning people' is they've woken up naturally from a REM cycle and are feeling rested," says Engle. "It means you likely have a restful sleep pattern and therefore are rested and ready to go in the morning."
The usual healthy sleep hygiene practices will come in handy here, says Engle. This includes regular bedtimes and wake-up times and keeping your sleep schedule consistent. "It can also be affected by genes," she says. "Some people are prone to be geared toward wakefulness in the mornings, but (as we all know) most of us aren't."
If you struggle to feel well-rested, like, ever, consider bribing yourself will a little coffee pre-romp. It can help non-morning people as well as make the whole experience more pleasurable. "Caffeine assists in getting the blood flow going (an important part of arousal) and making you more alert," says Engle. Try setting the coffee maker to auto-brew for a quick jolt without the setup time. Or, instead, pop a caffeine-loaded mint for a double awakening/breath benefit, or even an arousal oil — packed with stimulating ingredients such as botanical aphrodisiacs and CBD — that's certain to wake up your body even if your brain isn't fully on-board.
Go ahead — make it lazy.
Just because you're partaking in morning sex thing doesn't mean you have to go for a world-record romp. Keep it extra chill with horizontal positions: spooning transitions nicely from cuddling to X-rated with minimal effort; missionary can be super satisfying even if you think it's boring; cowgirl/rider doesn't need to be upright and athletic; and if you're going at it solo, you probably don't even need to move from your sleeping position to get started. Take this opportunity to try slower sex (think: tantric-ish) versus covering a lot of ground with every thrust.
Keep an SOS morning sex kit close by.
Think of this as a nightstand toolkit to tackle any problems that might arise in the morning and act as a roadblock (or fun-suck) for morning action. If your number one concern about morning sex is morning breath, stash some mints, mouthwash strips, or gum in your drawer, says Fleming. If you find you don't get naturally lubricated in the morning, keep some lube options right there, too. If you need a little extra stimulation, keep a charged bullet vibe or finger vibrator ready to go. And if you find you're always parched in the AM (making kissing and oral no fun), keep a glass of water by your bedside.
Even if you don't pounce on the morning sex train every day or even week, it can be a fun way to switch up your sex schedule, enjoy a lazy weekend morning, or sneak in some extra quality time with your partner. And it's ok if you're a little late to your morning meeting or log onto Zoom with bedhead — we won't tell.