11 Ways to Have Sex Better, According to Science

Because empirical evidence could prove useful.

You can try all the sex positions you want, or you can call up the world’s foremost doctors for sex advice on their one surefire trick in the bedroom. And then the positions get better.

Watch Porn Together 

"I think it's important to cue up the videos in advance, to know what your favorites are, because this process is very drying. If you feel awkward in the moment, be like, 'Yo, I'm feeling hella awkward right now.' Because it can start with you guys making fun of it." And then, debrief on what you liked—and didn't like. That will transfer to the bedroom.   

—Shan Boody, sexologist and author

Make It Last 
According to not one but 34 sex therapists, the scientifically proven "desirable" length for intercourse is seven to 13 minutes. That's not including foreplay.

Tell Her She Looks (and Tastes) Great
“It’s been proven that women who feel confident about the appearance of their genitals are more open to different kinds of sexual activity, and are more likely to orgasm because they feel relaxed…When a man goes down on his partner, he should be enthusiastic, tell her how beautiful she is and how great she tastes. Don’t treat it like a chore.”


—Debra Lynee Herbenic, Ph.D., Indiana University, Kinsey Institute

Take Your Time Undressing 
"There is a degree of manipulation when it comes to the amount of neurotransmitter released... Looking at a nude picture will trigger a quick and strong release of dopamine and possibly oxytocin, but it fades quickly... Let her work for it a little; she'll enjoy the prolonged neurological orgasm more.”

—Andrea Kuszewski, Behavior Therapist and Consultant, Boston, Massachusetts

Use Your Ears
“The only difference between a gigolo and a regular guy is that a gigolo listens to what a woman wants in bed. So, ask. I would also advise that you ask her while not in the bedroom—raise the discussion while out walking or doing some other casual yet intimate thing together."

—Dr. Helen Fisher, Department of Anthropology, Rutgers University

Bring the Kitchen into the Bedroom 
"Arginine is the basis for Viagra, so men should stick with foods high in it—such as oysters, fish, and other lean proteins. Everything that's good for you above the waist is good for you below the waist as well: greens and beans; high protein/low-fat foods; and brightly colored fruits and vegetables, high in antioxidants. The Standard American Diet is…a detriment to performance.”

Recommended Videos

—Lynn Edlen-Nezin, Ph.D., co-author of Great Food, Great Sex

Take a Shower
“There’s no proven human pheromone to make you irresistible. So, until one is found, wash well—you can have too much of a good thing. (But why not leave a worn T-shirt at her house? It will keep you always in her mind.)” 

—Dr. Tristram Wyatt, Department of Zoology, University of Oxford

Don't Worry So Much; Intercourse Isn't Everything 
"If you're thinking, 'I hope it works! I hope it works!' it's not going to work. Take penetrative sex off the table for a month—do everything but that. Avoid making intercourse the be-all/end all. In most cases, once men stop worrying about it, it starts working. You can definitely stress yourself out of a boner.” 

—Emily Wentzell, Assistant Professor of Anthropology, University of Iowa

Create a Mood—Turn the Lights Down
“For women to get aroused, parts of their brains associated with stress and anxiety need to de-activate, according to neurological studies in the Netherlands. If women aren't relaxed, they're not going to enjoy sex. So dim the lights and share a fantasy. A Harvard study found that when you hug a woman longer than 30 seconds, it increases her oxytocin levels and anticipation of sex.”


—Ian Kerner, Ph.D, FAACS, author of She Comes First: the Thinking Man's Guide to Pleasuring a Woman

Reverse Cowgirl Position 
"Find out what position of intercourse is most stimulating to her—it's usually woman on top, facing away, also known as the reverse cowgirl. The angle of the penis through the anterior/front wall of the vagina stimulates the area of the G-spot.”

—Beverly Whipple, Ph.D., Professor Emerita at Rutgers University and co-author of The Science of Orgasm

Touch Her Everywhere (with Oil)
“Sensual touching releases a powerful sex hormone called oxytocin, which increases a woman’s testosterone levels and ignites her sex drive. The seductive silky feel of oil being rubbed on skin is a turn-on for more passionate sex—for both of you.”

—Carol Cassell, Ph.D., former president of the Society for the Scientific Study of Sexuality, Western Religion

This story originally appeared on


* Minor edits have been made by the editors.

View More Articles About:
More Videos You Can Watch
About The Author
Judy McGuire
View Other Articles From Judy
Latest Feed
Load More Articles
Connect With Us