Who says you only can enjoy sex in the bedroom? As the weather is heating up, so should your sexual activities. With the summer months quickly approaching, you may want to spice up your intimate and explore other out-of-the-box places to have sex, not just the bedroom, but is it safe to do so? We tapped experts to delve into the pros and cons of engaging in sex outside the quiet comforts of your home to potentially becoming more adventurous in public. After all, we’re entering the age of pleasure era, and we shouldn’t be afraid to adopt a daring mindset to try something new sexually, inside and outside the bedroom. According to sex therapist Chanta Blue, sex outside the bedroom is a great way to diversify your sexual routine. “Sex outside the bedroom is a great way to add some flavor to your regular sexual routine. It can lead to elevated experiences of intimacy and enhance romance between you and your partner,” she says to ESSENCE. Blue continues, “Sex naturally releases hormones including dopamine, oxytocin, and endorphins, so when you add an element of change, unfamiliarity or risk, you’re adding another boost of these feel-good hormones which can feel exhilarating.” She suggests another benefit of public sex is the potential for quality and intimate moments while leaving the location of the act and cheerful and fun-making memories. “For example, if you must stay at an event after a tryst in the bathroom, you might start sharing mischievous glances with your partner because only you two know your secret. Or, on the drive home from having sex in the woods, you get to hold hands and relish in the thoughts of what just happened,” she says.
Blue also notes that it’s essential to keep in mind that there is a multitude of ways to have sex that don’t involve penetrative sex, and in some cases and locations, it may be more thrilling for fingering or hand jobs, but be sure to place a coat or blanket over you.
Nikquan Lewis, psychotherapist and sex therapist believes that there are many pros to having sex in untraditional places, as the dopamine and adrenaline release alone can increase chances for enhanced pleasure and elevated desire. “There are various types of desire, including responsive and spontaneous desire. This is how people get “turned on.” Some may require being physically stimulated before becoming sexually aroused, which is responsive desire. Others become aroused without the need for physical touch, so the excitement of being in untraditional places may increase desire and arousal,” Lewis states.
So now we know that having sex in new places can fuel connection, increase relationship satisfaction and experiential intimacy (intimacy formed through experiencing shared interests, activities, and hobbies) even deepen your sex drive.
However, like any other decision, it can come with certain downsides. The obvious con of having sex outside of the privacy of your home is being caught, and the possibility of facing legal charges, the lack of safety. “First and foremost is the risk of being caught. Depending on your chosen location, this can be an embarrassing moment or a life-changing event. In most states, it is illegal to engage in public sex or indecent exposure, and you may have to pay a fine, spend some time in jail, or have your name placed on the sex offenders registry,” Blue states.
She continues, “Another con is that public sex doesn’t always lend itself to quality sex. Because of the very real chance of getting caught, you often have to rush the experience. Don’t get me wrong, quickies can be amazing, but if you’re looking for something more emotionally meaningful, this may not be the way to go. You also can’t always completely disrobe (so if someone does find you, you can quickly get yourself together). I suggest wearing loose-fitting/easy-access clothing like skirts/dresses, sweatpants, and basketball shorts.”
We’re not encouraging you to go to jail trying to have an orgasm! However, there are ways to mitigate potential severe consequences. Regarding safety, ensure no one is nearby or can directly see what you’re doing. Watch out for cameras; the last thing you may want is for your quickie to end up on Pornhub. Your physical safety is also important to consider. Be sure there is a limited danger of slipping and falling, being cut by something, or exposing your body to elements that could cause infections.
When having sex in pools or any water this summer, you should be aware of a unique subset of factors, including dryness. “Places involving water (pools, lakes, hot tubs, etc.) require mindfulness and being prepared. Believe it or not, water causes dryness and interrupts natural vaginal lubrication. This means there is a higher risk of irritation,” Lewis states. To combat this, she suggests using silicone-based lubes, not water-based ones, if you choose to have sex in the water. Also, chemicals compromise the structure of condoms, increasing risks of pregnancy and STIs. “Unfortunately, chlorine doesn’t kill sperm, so you should wear a condom if you aren’t interested in becoming pregnant. Other types of infection are also at risk while having sex in places with water as there are chances of bacteria or parasites. You can lower your risk for these by only utilizing private pools. Places involving water can be fun, but please be mindful to lower the risks of irritation and infection. Another tip for your partners with penises is to wear their correct size condom, as the chemicals will already compromise the condom’s preventative abilities. Too small condoms have a higher chance of breaking, and those that are too big have a greater chance of slipping off,” she says.
According to sexologist and relationship therapist Dr. Joy Berkheimer, LMFT, Ph.D., there are many ways to have sex outside your bedroom. “While you might not reproduce the same comfort or experience you have there, that’s not the point. We can here have many experiences and the options to tap back into as many of them as we choose. Your bedroom will be there, but now you can add to the menu of your ever-thriving sex life,” she says. Here are some of her creative ideas for sex outside the bedroom below.
Sex in the ocean (not the beach, but in the water): Nothing beats the natural buoyancy you get in the sea. Private beaches, if you have access, are probably best. One’s not known for any vicious sea creature attacks.
Sex in the shower; yours, hotels, spas: There is something so enticing and loving about bathing a partner, investigating their entire sculpture, arousing them as you have multiple opportunities to massage everything, and arousing yourself. You can heat things in the shower, cool yourself off, and start again.
When you want to be outside but not really: Try having sex on your enclosed patio. You get to enjoy the sounds of the night, the breeze, stars in the sky and miss me with all the mosquitos and neighbors prying eyes.
Additional sexy ideas from Nikquan Lewis to knock off of your summer bucket list:
- Matinee or midnight movie
- If you’re into kink, consider a dungeon or lifestyle club
- In a car during a car wash
- In your garden
- Ferris wheel (remember that episode in Insecure?)
- On your kitchen counters or table
- Airport parking garage in your car after one person returns from a trip
While we hope you get to heat up your sex life this summer successfully, there are some things to be mindful of when engaging in adventurous sex; consent is non-negotiable, transparent and effective communication is required for a good time, and don’t risk your safety for a time of pleasure.
Have fun connecting!