According to these results, plenty of people are sexting without making things weird, which got us to thinking: If we were going to sext, how would we do it without looking like total amateurs? (Asking for a friend, of course.)
We consulted with a few sexperts on the best sexting practices, and here’s what they said:
Some people don’t like sexting, and that is A-OK. Sexologist Megan Stubbs recommends checking to see if your partner is open to explicit messages first before you ever think about hitting send. Then and only then can you test the waters with an innocent text that may lead to naughtier things, Stubbs says. “Send them a message saying that you just came and were thinking of them while touching yourself. Simple words can go a long way and paint an erotic picture in the mind.”
Don’t worry, we’re getting to the good stuff really soon. But as relationship expert April Masini reminds all amateur sexters, less is more, especially in the arena of the dirty text. Even more importantly, taking things slow will help you ensure you send your naughty thoughts to a partner that you can trust. “As anonymous as you think your sext will be — just something between the two of you — studies show that the average sext is shared with three other people,” Masini says. “By accident, as a boastful measure, or because it’s not taken the way it was intended to, your sext may seem flirty and fabulous, but may end up the butt of a joke.”
You knew this was coming — pun intended — because explicit photos are really what sexting is all about. Stubbs encourages newbies sexters to think outside of the box beyond body parts that are so obvious (dick pic, we’re looking at you). “Get creative and send your partner suggestive photos. A photo of you barely covering your breasts can be just as hot if not more than one of you plainly showing off the goods. Play with the setting and fabrics in the composition of your photo too.” Stubbs adds, “And always be mindful of whether or not you want to include your face.”
Can we all agree that an emoji does not a hard-on make? Lucy Jones, relationship and sex expert and community manager at the dating site Toy Boy Warehouse, considers this a rookie sexting mistake. She says, “They might be a fun and easy way of getting across what you’re trying to say, but they’re going to fail at getting your partner hot under the collar. Instead, rely on the elaborate sexual fantasies you can create with words alone. Instead of the kiss emoji, describe how you’re going to kiss your partner. Instead of the joy emoji, elaborate on how pleasurable the experience is.”
When it comes to inevitable technology fails, this is one you do not want to make. Masini urges all amorous texters to take a beat before sending a raunchy message, and especially a nude image of any kind. We’ve all send an accidental mass text before, haven’t we? You’d think we would’ve learned our lesson by now. But, Masini says, the accidental sext blast is really hard to recover from. “Be careful when you send a sexy text to your partner, so it doesn’t wind up accidentally in the in box of the entire PTA.”
More often than not, sex naturally comes to an end, but with sexting, it’s a bit more difficult, Jones says. “There is a tendency for sexting to go on too long, and things will inevitably get boring. To overcome this, it’s important to suggest a ‘finishing point.’” Jones recommends saying, “If you keep talking like that, I’m going to invite you over,” if you want the sexting session to end with actual sex. If you’re more of a phone sex type of gal, then use your climaxes to mark the end of the conversation.
Still, Jones says, no matter how much fun you’re having, just make sure you have an ending point in mind. “Otherwise, the only thing physical feeling you’ll have is hand cramp from too much texting.”
Originally published Feb. 2008. Updated Sept. 2016.
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