Cupid's Pulse Article: Foreplay 411: 5 Tips to TryCupid's Pulse Article: Foreplay 411: 5 Tips to Try
By Romance Recovery’s Johanna Lyman for

Good foreplay is the “Holy Grail” of feminine sexuality. Women long for it, but few have actually experienced it… and most gals don’t even really believe it exists! But here’s the deal– good foreplay is essential in order for most women to reach orgasm. The average female takes a little over ten minutes to become aroused, but the level of arousal needed to climax during sex takes a little longer. What you do during that time is more important than how long you take to do it. Here are some tips for improving the foreplay in your relationship.

1. Come to Your Senses: From Caffyn Jesse, a Somatic Sex Educator: “The beginning of coming to our senses as erotic beings is to recognize that intercourse with a beloved partner is only one of many hundreds of possibilities for erotic interaction. We can learn to be playful. We can let go of empty and habitual approaches to sex. Coming to our senses means becoming mindful of our skin, our heartbeat, our breath, and the amazing intricacy of all we touch, see, smell, hear and taste — including our own bodies, and those of our lovers.” Touch, sight, taste, smell and sound… think of them all as tools to enhance foreplay.

Related: 3 Mistakes Women Make in Bed

2. Try a Blindfold: Speaking of senses, try blocking one to increase your sensual awareness through the others. The easiest way to do this is with a blindfold. The great thing about this tip is that you get to do it twice: once as the blindfolded partner, and one as the partner who can see. Pay attention to your other senses when the blindfold is on. Can you predict where your partner will touch you next by sensing him with your skin or hearing him move? Notice how your sense of touch is heightened when you’re blindfolded.

3. Fun with Food: You can use food to spice up your usual routine. Surprise your partner by feeding him something succulent, like strawberries or mango, then give him a deep kiss. The foreplay options using whipped cream are nearly endless, as well as delicious.

Related: 4 Hottest Bedroom Trends

4. Do the Unexpected: From Maria Merloni, MSW and relationship therapist: “Do something unexpected. Explore unusual areas of your partner’s body (such as just inside the hip bone, in the crease of the arm) using your hands, mouth, teeth. Use your imagination!”

5. Bedtime Stories: Share a bedtime story. Read an erotic tale out loud to your partner. If you’re shy, have him read one to you. There are a number of sites that offer erotic stories, or you could read a passage from an erotic novel like “50 Shades of Grey.” One of my favorite sites is Lusty Library. I once read a story to my partner while he was driving us to Montreal. I was kind enough to wait until we were almost there, but I’ll tell you that we couldn’t check into the hotel fast enough!

Try these tips and I bet you’ll start to find foreplay fun again!