Bedroom Insider

A blog about relationships, intimacy and sex toys.

Thursday, February 28, 2019

12 Best Podcasts to Learn about Sexuality

Singer in front of a microphone. Isolated on a dark background

Whether you prefer the science, culture, or water cooler talk about sex, you're sure to find a podcast on this list that will whet your appetite and keep you coming back for more.

The Science of Sex

The Science of Sex Podcast is hosted by Dr. Zhana Vrangalova, a sexuality professor at NYU, and radio personality Joe Pardavila who represents a layman without sex-specific education. The two provide entertainment in the form of water cooler chat and education when they bring in sex researchers and educators to discuss the latest in sex science. Everything from kink to polyamory to orientation is discussed on this show.

American Sex 

You might already be familiar with American Sex host Sunny Megatron and her partner and co-host Ken Melvoin-Berg from her Showtime series Sex with Sunny Megatron. If you prefer your information in the audio-only format or simply can't get enough of Sunny, this podcast is for you. American Sex covers a variety of sexual topics with a BDSM slant by bringing on experts as well as members of the kink community. Interviews tend to be casual and friendly.

Consensually Speaking with Gio

Some sex podcasts have pre-selected questions and more rigid formats. Those podcasts aren't Consensually Speaking. Described as a kink-centric, sex positive, podcast.” Episodes don't have a theme. Instead, dominant and kinkster Gio sits down to have a chat with experts, educators, and kinksters in a very casual way. You'll learn a bit about their experience and expertise, but the format is a bit more relaxed.

Sex Out Loud

Sex Out Loud Radio is one of the many sex education projects of Tristan Taormino, whom you might not better as an adult filmmaker. The popular podcast plays live every Friday and has been going strong since 2012. Notable guests have included Dr. Joycelyn Elders, Margaret Cho, and Dan Savage. Tristan covers topics from queer issues to sex toys to threesomes to gender equality on her show.

Death, Sex, and Money

WNYC Studios produced quality podcasts and radio shows, and Death, Sex, and Money is no exception. Hosted by journalist Anna Sale, this show asks all the “big questions” about serious life concerns, not just sex. She discusses the issues with celebrities and experts and gets input from listeners who want to weight in on their own sex lives, open relationships, and sex education fails. You may be able to catch this show on your local public radio station.


Radiolab's tagline boasts how they're “investigating” a strange world. And what is stranger in this world than sex? While this podcast's episode list includes few that are about sex or even relationships, the episodes that do focus on the topic of sexuality are well-produced and enlightening. Their 2018 miniseries on gender entitled “Gonads,” for example, is one. The hosts have also promoted other podcasts projects on the podcast so you can hear episodes about consent and conversion therapy.

Disability After Dark

Not everyone who is sexual is able-bodied (or minded). However, society has long glossed over the sexual nature of a person just because they might be handicapped. Hosted by Andrew Gurza, a  disability awareness consultant, Disability After Dark promotes frank discussion about the differences – and similarities – between disabled and able-bodied sex. The podcast shares stories about disability and sex that are not often heard and educates listeners about the realities of sex with a disability.

The Bad Girls Bible

Blogger Sean Jameson takes a stab at audio advice with the podcast that he shares on his site that offers sex advice catered to heterosexual women. Sean invites doctors and sex educators to discuss a variety of sex-related topics on the podcast. Many of these podcasts supplement content such as already on the Bad Girls Bible site and blog, but others stand alone.

Sex with Timaree

In her eponymous podcast, Dr. Timaree Schmit relies on her degree in Human Sexuality Education from Widener University to answer audience questions about sexual topics. Dr. Schmit talks to experts and sex workers on her show to tackle tricky subjects ranging from professional domination to erotic hypnosis to polyamory.

Graydancer's Ropecast

Known as “the longest-running kinky sex podcaster on the web,” Ropecast has been around since 2005 and boasts over 200 episodes. Graydancer is practically kink royalty at this point, but he stays humble by providing education and entertaining to aspiring and experienced kink practitioners alike. Ropecast might sound like it's only about rope bondage, and the show does cover every flavor conceivable, but it also branches out to fetish art, BDSM relationship, and general sexuality.

Paging Dr. NerdLove

Doctor Nerdlove isn't a doctor; he just plays one on this podcast. The podcast offers practical advice on flirting, dating, and sex for the “modern nerd.” It's more generalized than some of the kink or science podcasts on this list, but it's a great primer for someone who may be getting back into dating, who has struggled with romance and technology, or anyone who wants to improve their sexual skills.

Life on the Swingset 

If you've ever wanted to listen to a podcast about swinging, polyamory, or other open relationships, look no further than Life on the Swingset. This podcast is part of Life on the Swingset, a website and community created by Cooper Beckett to bring together swingers, poly folks, and even BDSM fans to discuss ethical non-monogamy and all that it entails. The archive includes more than 300 episodes, so you'll have plenty to explore if you decide to dive in.

Of course, there are hundreds of podcasts, and your favorite may not be on this list or it may be defunct. Plus, some of the best episodes about sex may be part of podcasts that have a different focus. Still, the twelve podcasts above should keep you busy for a while, and you can let us know if we missed a great podcast about sex by sounding off in the comments.

By: Adriana Ravenlust
Follow on Twitter @adriana_r

Friday, February 15, 2019

New Year’s Resolutions: Sex Edition

Young passionate lovers lie

Opinions on New Year’s resolutions vary far and wide. Some folks view the start of a new year as a clean slate filled with endless opportunities for growth, while some see it as a month like any other. Most resolutions revolve around self-improvement, like eating a healthier diet, balancing finances, or reaching a fitness goal, but what if we made New Year’s resolutions for our sex lives? Our habits around sex influence both our mental health and our sense of intimacy with others. Those aspects of our lives deserve care just as much as our physical health and finances do. Whether you embrace the New Year as a time to start afresh or view it as any other day, here are some possible sex intentions to set for 2019.

Have More Sex

For many of us, it seems impossible to find time for intimacy. It seems like there’s always work to be done, bills to be paid, children to be cared for, and messes to clean up. Not to mention a partner to find. As with any goal, aiming to have more sex might mean you need to put some work into making it happen. That could be setting up an online dating profile or going on more dates, or it could mean scheduling time with your partner or finding childcare. It might even mean overcoming some personal hang ups around sex, which can be helped with a therapist. Whatever is preventing you from your ideal sex life, take a look at what it might be, and make some steps towards finding strategies to overcome or confront the issue.

Have Better Sex

The way to do so? Increase communication and honesty. Ask your partner what they like, what turns them on, and what body parts they like touched and how. Listen to their answers, and if they’re not too shy, ask them to show you how they like it. Advocate for your own needs and desires as well, and don’t settle for partners who won’t listen to them. This may mean having less sex. Say no to sex you’re not thrilled about. Praise and thank your partner for a job well done, and tell them what you want more of next time. For more examples of ways to talk about sex, check out our guide to communication.

Masturbate More

Maturbation is the number one way to find out what your body likes and dislikes, plus, it comes with a whole host of benefits! It can improve sleep, relieve stress, reduce menstrual cramps, help connect you with your body, and more. Creating time for masturbation means creating time for all those benefits, and of course, good feelings and orgasms!

Try New Things

What have you considered trying in the past but just haven’t been able to yet? Test a new toy or two, experiment with some new sex acts, or even get a little kinky! You could switch roles with a partner and unleash your dominant or submissive side, dabble in some rope bondage, or slow down and try tantric sex for some extra sensual connection. Make a list of things that interest you and see how many you can do before the end of the year.

Take Care of Your Sexual Health

Whatever your needs are, this upcoming year is a great time to check in with a medical provider and see if you’re due for any sexual health care. If you have a prostate, ask your doctor about a prostate health screening. If you’ve got a cervix (the hole that separates the vagina and uterus), see if it’s time for a pap smear (recommended once every three years). Paps detect abnormal cervical cells, and screen for cervical cancer and HPV. Speaking of HPV, the FDA just extended the approved age range for Gardasil, which vaccinates against the most high-risk strains of potentially cancer-causing HPV. If you’re under the age of 45, call your health insurance provider and ask if they’ll cover the three shots needed to keep you safe.

Get Tested

If you’re sexually active with more than one partner, or if your partner has other partners, it’s recommended to be tested for STIs (sexually transmitted infections) at least once per year, perhaps even more often depending on your levels of safer sex or frequency of new partners. The problem with STIs is that someone with an infection might not show any symptoms, but will still be able to spread the infection. Some STIs may be damaging to reproductive organs even without showing symptoms, so even if nothing “seems wrong”, it is important to be routinely tested to keep you and your partners safe.

Maybe your goals are nothing like these. Maybe you just want to be better with condom use or start a new birth control that better suits your lifestyle. Maybe you want to have less sex or become sexually active for the first time in a while. Whatever you want to do, write it down and take some baby steps. Your goals are unique to you. They’re valid. You deserve to have the sex you want, and you’re worth it. Happy New Year!

By: Sammi
Follow on Twitter @Squeaky_Springs

Tuesday, February 12, 2019

Redefining Sex - From Foreplay to Coreplay

Muscular handsome man and young sensual woman with sexy ass lies on a bed

We're all used to the idea of foreplay. There's making out, which might turn into dry humping. Clothes come partially off, and mouths and fingers travel across skin, perhaps pausing to stimulate genitals.
Oral sex, hand jobs, and fingering, these are the ingredients we know as “foreplay.”

Because when you relegate activities such as oral or manual sex to the category of “foreplay,” you view them as less important. They become obligations before the “main event.” You may rush through them with slipshod effort or skip them altogether.

And this wouldn't be a huge deal if everyone got what they needed or wanted from penetrative sex alone, or if they could jump right into penetration comfortable.

But that's rarely the case.

This is especially true for women. Research has found that many women require clitoral stimulation to orgasm, and others prefer clitoral stimulation along with penetration/vaginal stimulation. Most women focus on their clits when masturbating, too. While I wouldn't want to make the mistake of describing the purpose of sex as orgasm – intimacy, release, and pleasure can be achieved even without getting off – there's no reason why women should have to “suffer through” sex without an orgasm if they wish to have one.

For many women, what has traditionally been called “foreplay” is really essential to a positive sexual experience. Some men may also prefer those activities to penetration alone. Many people across the gender spectrum may find that they require the additional time provided by foreplay activities to become relaxed, which is crucial to becoming aroused. And without proper arousal, sexual activity may not feel as good – and may even hurt – and is less likely to provide your desired results.

What's the solution to this problem, then? We need to redefine sex. Sex isn't just anal or vaginal penetration. After all, if that were the case, you could argue that many same-sex couples have never had sex, and this is clearly not true. Perhaps the reason why so many people misunderstand how lesbians have sex is that we have so rigidly defined the act in the past.

The language we use colors our worldview. Revising the definition of sex will only help us all have better sex. But if we take a broader view of what counts as sex, what do we do with the word “foreplay?” I've read the suggestion before that we create a new category: coreplay. I think this is a wonderful solution both practically and linguistically.

Calling pleasurable activities that may not involve penetration “coreplay” reminds us how crucial they are to our pleasure and encourages us to provide adequate time and attention to them. By removing the “fore,” we can also reorganize how we have sex. We no longer have to view fingering, for example, as something that must always come before sex. Instead, it can happen at any stage of the sexual experience. But even if coreplay activities are still followed by penetration, giving them due diligence allows for greater arousal, increased pleasure, and a higher likelihood of orgasm.

When you're able to stop looking at some parts of the sexual experience as lesser than others, you can discover how significant those activities can be. Remember when you were a teenager who had not yet have had sex? Making out was intensely stimulating and even orgasmic. But once you crossed that sexual threshold, you were less likely to simply stop making out altogether or rush it in a perfunctory fashion. We often do the same thing for cuddling, viewing it as something that must lead to sex with a partner instead of as a fulfilling activity in itself.

But coreplay activities can be an endgame in themselves. Your session in the sack can feel complete if you “only” engage in coreplay. All partners can be satisfied, and no one has to be left out in the cold.

Redefining sex helps to level the playing field for those partners who might not be best served by the rigid way we currently frame sex, and, yes, those people who are the most disenfranchised are usually women.

Of course, not every sexual encounter will be long enough to explore a variety of activities, but you don't have to have sex a particular way just because that's how you've always done it. Even if you don't buy into the idea of “coreplay,” examining how you have sex and why can shed light on a subject that's so often in the dark.

Most importantly, you might realize that you've been a selfish lover who always expects – and receives – pleasure in the bedroom. Or you might discover that you're on the other side of the coin and have had a lifetime of mediocre sex because you put up with what you believed sex was “supposed” to be without asking to have any of your needs met in the bedroom.

I often discuss how we need to shift the way we view and talk about sex, and this is just one example of doing that. When we peer more closely at our sex lives, we can see areas that need improvement while taking stock of our strengths. So the next time you crawl between the sheets with a partner, take a good, hard look. When you actively include coreplay, you'll know it's a job well done because of how enjoyable sex will be for you and your partners.

By: Adriana Ravenlust
Follow on Twitter @adriana_r

Thursday, February 7, 2019

Eight Reasons to Try Pole Dancing

Pole dancer

What comes to your mind when you think of pole dancing? Television has tried to teach us that spinning around a pole is reserved for dark and seedy strip clubs, but that couldn’t be farther from the truth. In fact, pole dancing can be a source of empowerment. Pole dancing is growing in popularity as both a form of dance and as a sport. Some folks train for hours a week to compete in international competitions. Some do it for a living, whether that’s opening their own pole studio or exhibiting their skills onstage. Yet still, some folks simply head to class once or twice a week to learn new skills, get some exercise in, and make friends. There are so many reasons to try pole dancing, and these are just a few of them.

1. So many different styles of dance are associated with pole. Some people focus on a graceful flow, twirling around like a ballerina (even calling themselves pole-erinas). Some focus on acrobatic elements, flipping around and utilizing their strength. Some exhibit complex poses, tangled around the pole somehow defying gravity, and some like to swivel their hips and chanel the sexiness that comes to mind when we think of pole dancing. There’s a style of pole for everyone!

2. Pole dancing is a great way to exercise. If you’ve got fitness goals in mind, whether that’s to move around with some cardio, build strength, or increase flexibility, pole dancing can be tailored to fit that goal for a full-body workout. The recommended amount of exercise to stay healthy is a half hour per day. If you’re not a fan of conventional fitness activities, pole dancing might be a great option for you!

3. Pole studios have classes especially for beginners, and chances are there might be one near you. These nearly always have beginner friendly classes in which you don’t even need to have seen a pole or have any dance background. Additionally, if you’re picturing the entire class to be composed of young, skinny, perfectly toned women, you’ll be surprised. People of all ages, body sizes, and athletic abilities pole-dance, and are great at it, too. Whatever you look like and whatever your skill level, you’ll fit right in.

4. If classes aren’t your thing, or if there aren’t any studios around you, you can teach yourself. You’ll need to purchase your own pole for your home, but these install easily and don’t even require any hardware to ruin your ceilings. Do a quick web search for pole dancing for beginners and you’ll find hundreds of videos geared to those new to pole dancing. Just by using the internet you can teach yourself spins, walks, climbs, and body waves without having to brave a crowded class.

5. You could make new friends. A pole dance studio is a vulnerable environment. People are less clothed than usual (it helps your body stick to the pole), and are trying things that might scare them (even if that is simply being there). Add in folks giving helpful tips, encouraging their peers, and boosting one another’s confidence, and you’ve got an environment perfect for forming great friendships.

6. You can bring friends, too! Pole studios often have options for private group lessons. These are perfect for bachelorette parties or just groups of friends that want to have a fun time learning to pole dance.

7. You could learn some sexy moves for a partner. Pole dancing doesn’t have to be sexy, but if that’s what you want, there’s a class for that! Often called exotic pole, these lessons sometimes include dancing with a chair, lap dancing, or simply learning ways to move your body in a sensual way. Then, you can show them off at home to your partner.

8. Pole dancing helps you build confidence and feel sexy. Boost your confidence in your own body, surprise yourself again and again with what your body is capable of, and feel a sense of accomplishment when you get that skill you never thought you could do. 

Pole dancing is for everyone and anyone. There are so many benefits to the sport, and so many ways one can experience it. Twirling around the pole can build fitness, friendships, creativity, and confidence. While it still carries some stigma, pole dancing has come to recent light as an empowering activity anyone can try, and that anyone could be you!

By: Sammi
Follow on Twitter @Squeaky_Springs