There are days when you only have enough time for a quickie. Perhaps you’re swamped with work, or the kids will be back home at any moment—not to mention that cutting right down to it can be incredibly arousing. But quickie sex shouldn’t be the only type of sex you’re having, especially when you do have the time for longer sessions (and even if you don’t have the time, you should make the time).
Enter slow sex, where you take your time with your partner and get the opportunity to experience every single bit of pleasure. “Sure, you can feel things during fast sex, but during slower sex, there is more time for your brain to process the experience of each sensation,” says Kate Balestrieri, Psy.D., founder of Modern Intimacy. “So, it’s as if you feel more. Sex is a multi-sensory experience, and when you slow it down, you can savor more of the sights, sounds, smells, tastes, and touches.”
This is just one of the many reasons slowing down sex can enhance your pleasure. Balestrieri provided us with eight other ways slow sex can bring your lovemaking sessions to new, never-before-seen heights.
You can connect with eye contact.
Slow sex opens up the possibility for sustained eye contact, which adds a whole new level of hotness to the equation. “Whether a soft gaze or an intense stare, eye contact turns up the intensity of emotions and sensations,” Balestrieri says. “Mirror neurons, activated through eye contact, promote limbic resonance, which essentially means your limbic systems become more in sync.” In other words, the emotions you feel (like excitement or affection) can become amplified.
You can tantalize each other with light touch.
Sometimes jackhammering is nice, but don’t underestimate the power of a gentle touch. “Slow, erotic touching can ignite a passion and hunger in the body like no other,” she says. “During faster sex, there may not be enough time to let fingers caress or feel lips grace your skin.”
You can tease and edge.
The art of the tease is an arousal transforming act. Slower sex allows you to build arousal and keep your partner on the edge of their seat, sometimes literally. Edging, the practice of orgasm control is about bringing yourself or your partner to the edge of orgasm and then stopping just before climax. “Doing this over and over can extend sexual intimacy and send never imagined waves of pleasure throughout the body,” Balestrieri says. Not to mention there’s a little bit of a power play that happens with edging since you’re in control of your partner’s orgasm(s). That said, it’s good to have a talk with your partner before you practice edging. Otherwise, they may get, um, frustrated…
The sex lasts longer.
Slower sex is just that—slower—so it is likely to last longer. You’re not rushing or trying to fit it into your day. Slow sex unfolds. “It becomes an adventure, in lieu of a performance, and curates space for more exploration of each other’s bodies, likes, and expressions,” Balestrieri says. “Too often, the focus of sex is penetration. Slower sex allows you to focus on so many other avenues of pleasure to get out of your head and drop into your body.”
There’s more potential for orgasm...
The average penis owner takes between 5 and 7 seven minutes to orgasm through sex. According to 2019 research published in the Journal of Sexual Medicine, it takes the average vulva owner around double that time—13.41 minutes—to orgasm during P-in-V intercourse. If your partner has a vulva, taking your time during sex increases the likelihood that both of you will have time to reach orgasm. (Don't forget the clitoral stimulation!) “[Still,] good sex is not defined by whether or not you or your partner have an orgasm, but they’re certainly extra perks,” Balestrieri says. “Slowing down gives your bodies the chance to fully relax, which is key in opening up pleasure spots and increasing both the frequency and intensity of an orgasm.”
...but it takes the pressure off of orgasming, too.
“Slow sex can be especially helpful if you’re concerned about early ejaculation or erectile dysfunction because there is no race to the finish line,” Balestrieri says. “While it may seem counterintuitive to elongate the process of being sexual, when you’re anxious about sexual function, slowing down gives you more opportunity to remain embodied and aware of your own arousal.” So because slower sex lasts longer, there are more opportunities for the arc of arousal to start and stop and more time to augment with non-penetrative sexual activities.
It allows for more sexual creativity.
Slowing down allows for more authenticity and creativity together. “With slower sex, you can introduce different sexual accessories or toys—vibrators, restraints or blindfolds, whip cream, or anything else,” Balestrieri says. The options to play together are infinite and slowing down ensures you will have more time to think outside the box.
You can have Tantric sex.
You can practice Tantra with slow sex. (In fact, that’s really the only to be able to have tantric sex.) “Tantra is a holistic practice that weaves together breath, spirituality, and connection,” Balestrieri says. “Slow sex and tantra were made for each other, because with slower sex, you can focus on ensuring your breath is in rhythm with your partner and set up your sexual space with intention.”