Madonna once encouraged us to, ‘Make him express how he feels, so then you’ll know your love is real’.
But we’re going to guess that she wasn’t staring at her blank phone screen, trying to think of a sexy response for, ‘What are you wearing?’.
Whether it’s over the phone, online, or in person, communicating with your partner can be tough—even more so if you’re trying to spice things up with a bit of dirty talk or sexting. Many of us can clam up or cringe when faced with a good ol’ fashioned sexting sesh, but it needn’t be that way.
We’re going to show you exactly how to conquer sexting and dirty talk, minus the awkward silences.
First up: a note on why we use the term ‘dirty talk’. We know that sex isn’t dirty, and talking about it isn’t either! However this is such a commonly-used phrase that we’ve chosen to keep using it here so you know what we’re talking about: the act of talking to your partner during sex or play about your fantasies, feelings, or urges. For the sake of this article we’re going to use the most well-known term, and that’s dirty talk; but we also love the terms ‘aural sex’, ‘explicit flirting’, and ‘sexting’ if we’re talking about explicit flirting over text.
As always, consent is key
Sending sexts and whispering sweet nothings to a partner can be wildly sexy, but only when they’re fully consenting. Never, ever send a sext or make an approach towards someone unless you know that they’re in the mood and keen to receive it. Equally, if you’ve received a sext or an nude photo from someone, do not ever send it on or show it to anyone else. Sharing an intimate photo without consent can be considered image-based sexual abuse, which is a crime. Oh, and if you’re considering opening a conversation with a stranger on a dating app by sending a photo of your genitals? Just don’t.
Pick your moment—and sext wisely
Our best advice to you is that sexting and dirty talk should be an addition to the way you flirt or communicate in a relationship, not the whole box and dice. Very few people will experience instant arousal upon receiving a nude photo of their partner out of the blue or hearing about how turned on their lover is.
We think that sexts and nudes are best received when you’re already having an intimate and flirty conversation with your partner, and dirty talk is most effective when you’re already being playful or sexual with someone. Hearing, “I’m so horny for you” in your ear at the coffee shop? Not so hot. Having it whispered in your ear during a passionate make-out sesh? We’re into it.
Likewise, sometimes the best sexts are about what isn’t said, rather than what is. A hint at what’s to come can be even more erotic then a detailed description of a fantasy—here are some of our suggestions for understated and flirtatious comments:
- “I’ve got a surprise for you later.”
- “I’m wearing something that I think you’ll really like.”
- “You’re about to have a very good evening…”
- “You’re the boss tonight,” or, “I’m the boss tonight.”
If you’re unsure, start with a compliment
It can be powerfully sexy to engage in dirty talk and sexting, but it’s common to feel tongue-tied when it comes time to actually articulate your thoughts. In the heat of the moment, all those sexy sayings you might’ve had in mind can completely disappear, leaving you with an awkward silence to fill.
If this happens, never fear—we reckon giving your partner a compliment can be a great way to make them feel good about themselves, and help you discuss something you find sexy. If you’re not sure where to start, here are some of our recommendations:
- “You look so hot in that outfit you’re wearing…”
- “I get so turned on when I think about you.”
- “You have the sexiest butt I’ve ever seen.”
- “I’ve never felt this comfortable with anyone before.”
- “I still fantasise about that night when you…”
Create a fantasy together
Sometimes it can be really fun to discuss a fantasy you have with your partner. After all, the sky's the limit when it comes to what you can sext and talk about! From the mildest to the wildest fantasy, sexting and dirty talk can create spaces in which we can live out our biggest fantasies—even if we wouldn’t necessarily want to make them a reality.
We recommend starting slow, and always giving your partner the chance to speak up if your fantasy isn’t their cup of tea (and vice-versa). If they interrupt with, “I’m actually not into that idea…” take a break, talk it out, and allow them to suggest something else if they desire.
- “I’ve been thinking about that new sex toy we bought…”
- “Remember that erotica we were reading last week? I’m imagining you in the starring role…”
- “How would you feel about tying me up?”
- “Sounds like you’ve had a tough day—do you need a visit from your Naughty Nurse?”
- “I can’t stop thinking about how good it felt when you were touching me yesterday.”
Get in to some sexy Q & A
And we don’t mean the panel show! Asking your partner a question can be a good way to introduce a little dirty talk into your play, or get you both out of a lull if you’ve run out of things to say to each other. We don’t recommend firing off a bunch of questions—start with one and allow them to enjoy crafting their response, then go from there.
- “Do you like it when I touch you like this?”
- “What would you like to do to me right now?”
- “Remember that time when we…?”
- “Can you tell how turned on I am?”
- “How would you like me to make you come?”
Embrace the awkward
There’s no denying it—even the most loquacious wordsmiths can get tongue-tied, run out of things to say, or trip over their words in the heat of the moment. We’re socialised not to talk about sex and pleasure, so it’s natural that taking yourself out of your comfort zone and giving voice to your fantasies and desires can feel a little strange at times. If you do have a sexting faux pas or jumble your words while trying to play it smooth, simply shrug it off and smile—because being able to smile and laugh with your partner is just as sexy as being able to turn them on with your words.