Carefree vacation sex can make an everyday romp feel, well, vanilla. Here's how to make sex at home blow your mind as much as when you're away
Vacation is a time to relax, unwind—and, let's not forget, have lots and lots of mind-blowing sex.
Vacation sex really is more satisfying and enjoyable, in part because of the external factors: You're in a new place and you have no responsibilities (you're usually not even cooking for yourself!), so you're extra focused on the person you're with. "Sex already triggers a cascade of hormones and brain chemicals that stimulate attachment and emotional desire," says Washington D.C.-based clinical psychologist Alicia H. Clark. "Novelty further drives up the dopamine circuit in your brain, so it isn't surprising that vacations are times when these things come together for a more satisfying sexual experience." (Try these 9 Ways to Sex Up Your Relationship.)
Unfortunately, most of us don't have the time or money to jet-set off to a foreign country whenever our sex lives are taking a hit. Luckily, you can have vacation-hot sex without ever leaving your home by focusing on novelty, spontaneity, and fully connecting with your partner. You don't even need to block time off to do it (although you can certainly plan a sexy staycation). Here's how to get that vacation spark back whether you've got the whole week off or just want to make the most of a night without the kids.
Stop Scheduling Sex
It's not like you're writing it in your day planner or making a Google Calendar appointment, but everyday life is full of routines, and sex is usually one of them. But when you're on vacation, all routines fly out the window—and that's part of what makes sex more exciting, says sex therapist Jane Greer, Ph.D., author of What About Me? Stop Selfishness from Ruining Your Relationship.
Greer suggests taking half a day off for just the two of you, where you lie around and do nothing except have sex when you feel like it. "Have sex whenever either one of you is in the mood. This mimics the 'open-ended' timing of being on vacation, where you can be intimate whenever you please," she says.
Traveling to an exotic locale usually involves staying in a hotel room—one that you don't have to clean. Not having to worry about the consequences of, say, bringing whip cream into the bedroom definitely lifts a load off your shoulders, which makes you more able to be present during sex and connected to your partner, says licensed marriage and family therapist Kat Van Kirk, author of The Married Sex Solution. Makes sense—it's a lot easier to focus on your guy when you're not thinking about the sheets you'll have to wash afterward.
Unless you're willing to hire a housekeeper, it's hard to get around cleaning up after yourself. But you can make it easier on yourself. Van Kirk suggests keeping a cloth shower curtain in the bedroom that you can throw down on the bed when you want to have wild, messy, consequence-free sex. (Or try one of these 5 Cool Ideas for Sensationally Hot Sex.)
Make Your Bedroom a Tech-Free Zone
When we go on vacation, we often unintentionally take a break from technology (because who needs Instagram when you're seeing sites IRL?). This digital detox helps us feel more connected to the people we're with—emotions that only help make sex hotter. "When you're constantly connected to your phone, you aren't really connected to the people around you," Van Kirk says. "Even if your phone is just near the bed, if it buzzes, it will pull you out of the moment." (In fact, it's one of 5 Common Libido-Crushers to Avoid.)
The fix: Make your bedroom a tech-free zone. That means no phones, no laptops, no televisions. And that's advice not just for the weekend, but forever. (If you can't banish tech from the bedroom completely, try just your actual bed.) Not only will you have better sex, you'll have more sex, Van Kirk says. Because, after all, without phones, what else are you going to do?
Ditch the Bed
Novelty is the spice of life, but that doesn't mean you need to travel across the world to find it. "As a general rule, doing anything different, even just having sex backwards on the bed, introduces that novel element that makes vacation sex so satisfying," Van Kirk says. You don't have to be in a totally new place, you just have to find a new place to have sex, like your car, living room couch, or a tent in the backyard.
"Sex doesn't always have to be full-blown intercourse," Van Kirk says. "Maybe you make out in your car before you go inside, or you have oral sex in the pantry—those new circumstances are enough to trigger that biochemical dopamine-inducing response to novelty." And shower sex may seem straight out of an x-rated film, but don't knock it just yet. Your shower is new, easy to clean, and relatively private, even if you have children—in other words, the trifecta of hassle-free titillation.