Okay, we know that the oil spill is BP’s problem, but that doesn’t entirely explain why so few people are eager to help out with the relief effort. It may not be the sexiest of world disasters, but a disaster it is. So here’s one way to help out: 20% of all proceeds from Oil Spill Condoms will be donated to help rebuild the Gulf Coast, via the Gulf Coast Oil Spill Fund. Oil Spill Condoms’ goal is to raise $50,000. And yes, in case you were wondering, the condoms are black. And lubricated. (The site is rife with cringe-worthy puns on everything from spilling to drilling. Let’s just leave it at that.) You can actually use the condoms, too, unlike so many novelty condoms: These ones are the FDA-approved Lifestyles Tuxedo brand.
Read the rest of this post on SUNfiltered
photo by faungg
The July issue of the UK edition of Marie Claire featured an article on vacation sex, for which we were asked for some insight. Since we can’t link to it online, we thought we’d give you our unabridged thoughts on the topic — hopefully you haven’t taken your summer vacay yet and can benefit from them!
1) Why vacation sex is better than home sex:
The vacation itself can act as extended foreplay.Â You’re probably spending some nice quality time with your partner during the day, doing novel things together, which can bring you closer. Since you haven’t been at work all day stressing, it’s a much smoother segue into sex — in other words, you don’t need time to unwind before you get naked. And since mental distractions — work stresses, looming to-do lists, ongoing arguments — can keep women from focusing on the here and now in the bedroom, a vacation can help them be more in the moment, and therefore more likely to have an orgasm, by helping clear their head (if only temporarily). And applying suntan lotion to each other all day = foreplay!
2) How it can be worse:
The expectation is greater, so there’s more room for disappointment if things don’t go as planned.Â That’s how it is for all aspects of vacation, whether you’re talking about the weather, the food or the sex.
3) How to make it even better:
Scent is such a powerful memory maker. Get a new, nice smelling massage lotion or lubricant and be sure to use it liberally during your vacation sex. When you get home, pack it away for a while. That way, when you break it out down the road, you’ll be transported back to the time and space of your vacation, a psychic space that was (hopefully) both relaxing and sexy.
Lelo’s Etherea Silk Cuffs
One of our favorite toy creators, Lelo, just launched a line of sensual accessories for glamourous bondage experimentation, i.e. cosmopolitan kink, tantalizing teasing, filthy rich restraint, etc. The high-quality materials (which come in cherry red, deep purple, or black) and even higher price tags will make your dabbling in BDSM seem less, um, unseemly. But if you’re gonna get tied up and be forced to moan like a dying cow, might as well do it in style:
- Etherea Cuffs: With silk on one side and suede on the other, these can be worn around ankles or wrists. (Around $45)
- Intima Blindfolds: Adjustable and made from 100% pure silk. Here’s a tip — tie on the side of the head so your partner doesn’t have to lie on the knot. (Around $55)
- Boa Pleasure Ties: Long, silk restraints with pouches of freshwater pearls at one end, and stylish metal rings on the other. (Around $79)
- Sutra Cuffs: Like the Etherea Cuffs, except these come with a bit of chainlink so you can play around more with freedom and restriction, while feeling a little more badass. (Around $86)
No matter what you use to play around with bondage, remember: safety first!
Read our safety tips on SUNfiltered
photo by SFBNess
If you’re planning on having a new guest over to “look at your etchings” for the first time, follow these 10 rules to ensure there’s a next time:
- Only invite a guest over when you won’t have to rush out the door the next morning.
- Warn any roommates that you will be entertaining that evening.
- Remove all dirty laundry & dishes, any evidence of prior partners, and anything age-inappropriate (like dolls or teddy bears) from your bedroom and hide them. In fact, we’d recommend selling all but your most favorite cuddly toy on eBay.
- Turn off your cell phone and your land-line answering machine â€” especially if you expect your recent ex to call at 4am asking to be taken back for the 25th time.
- Take a tip from Hollywood movies and use dramatic, flattering lighting wherever you think you might end up doing it. Kill all fluorescents and any overhead lamps that have harsh, bright bulbs. Instead, use low-wattage bulbs in lamps tucked away in corners. Install dimmer switches for adjustable brightness. And light a few candles (no more than three, thoughâ€”you don’t want to overdo it).
- Have an extra toothbrush on hand, still in its packaging, and a fresh towel for them to use.
- Have a sexy music mix ready to go on your stereo or iPod, making sure that what you think is sexy isn’t too too overplayed and cheesy (anything by Marvin Gaye or Al Green).
- If you have a beloved pet who usually bunks with you, don’t assume your partner is an animal lover, too. They want to sleep with you, not Fluffy and Muffin. And letting your pets watch the two of you do it may creep them out. Banish all wildlife from your bedroom until you’re sure an ill-timed bark won’t kill the mood.
- In your bedside drawer, have ready a) quality condoms, b) a box of tissues for quick clean up, and c) a good brand of personal lubricant. The lube will make a nice addition to any handwork you two engage in, and will help you go long for any marathon sessions. The smaller the container the better, to help keep their insecure thoughts about previous partners at bay. Individual packets are ideal.
- Cook them breakfast in the morning if it’s the weekend; toast and coffee will do if it’s a work day.
This column appears bi-weekly in Metro. Read it in print here.
After a week of voting, “blue box” was the top pick out 11 options, getting 27% of the vote. The next closest was (astonishingly) “purplepuss”, with 16%. Em liked how “blue bird” rolled off the tongue and Lo was partial to “blue walls” for it’s rhyming with “blue balls”, but both of us think “blue box” is a fine term worthy of the win. (Though we are wondering if “blue box” being listed first out of the 11 had any influence on the voting.)
photo by Helga_Weber
Every few weeks, Dr. Vanessa Cullins, a board-certified obstetrician/gynecologist and vice president for medical affairs at Planned ParenthoodÂ® Federation of America, will be answering your questions here. To ask her your own question, click here.
Dear Dr. Vanessa,
Okay, so I have a very embarrassing question for you and wanted to check with you before I go see a health provider. This past weekend, I went away with a guy I have just gotten into a relationship with. He is my second sexual partner and has been checked for STDs recently, as have I. Â This weekend, we had sex fairly often, and we also used a vibrator that, unbeknownst to him, was not meant to go inside me. Even though I pulled it out, I have been feeling a lot of discomfort since we got back.
I have a lot of whitish discharge and it has a terrible odor, not to mention the fact that I am very sore. Could this be a case of irritation due to the â€śforeign objectâ€ť or possibly a case of BV? If it is just irritation, then I would prefer not to pay for a medical visit, but if itâ€™s BV, my understanding is that I should get antibiotics. Any ideas would be appreciated.
– Saddle Sore
You should be seen by a health care provider. Whenever a woman has an irritation of the vagina and an abnormal discharge â€” vaginitis or vulvovaginitis â€” she should see her health care provider and try to get a definitive diagnosis. Because the discharge you describe has a strong, unpleasant odor, three possible causes of vaginitis come to mind.
The first possible cause is what you suspected â€” bacterial vaginosis (BV). It is a condition caused by several bacteria, including gardnerella vaginalis. (BV used to be called “nonspecific vaginitis.”) Usually there is a heavy vaginal discharge. It is grayish and frothy and has an unpleasant, â€śfishyâ€ť odor. Most women have at least one incident of BV in their lives. Read the rest of this entry »
We’ve always been torn by porn. We’re not fans ourselves, but we’re not comfortable dictating where to draw the line for other people’s fantasies either. So it was with great interest that we read this Guardian interview with Gail Dines, author of the new book “Pornland: How Porn Has Hijacked Our Sexuality,” along with the critical Publisher’s Weekly review of it:
As pornography has become both more extreme and more commercial, antiporn activist Dines argues, it has dehumanized our sexual relationships. The radical objectification and often brutal denigration of women in porn, she holds, leaks into other aspects of our lives. Dines’s argument rests on a compelling, close reading of the imagery and narrative content of magazines, videos, and marketing materials; what is missing, however, is a similarly compelling body of research on how these images are used by viewers, aside from Dines’s own anecdotal evidence. The author’s appropriation of addiction terminologyâ€”viewers are called users, habitual viewing is an addiction, and pornography featuring teenagers is called Pseudo-Child Pornography or PCPâ€”is distracting and suggests that rhetorical tricks are needed because solid argumentation is lacking. Likewise, Dines’s opponents are unlikely to be swayed by her speculation tying porn viewing to rape and child molestation, nor by the selective sources she draws on to support her point (convicted sex offenders). The book does raise important questions about the commoditization of sexual desires and the extent to which pornography has become part of our economy (with hotel chains and cable and satellite companies among the largest distributors). (July)
We know the majority of readers of EMandLO.com are probably pro-porn, but figured many of you also have reservations about a lot of it. How it both positively and negatively affects our desires, our expectations and our relationships. Rarely is any issue just black and white, and porn’s no exception (despite this post’s title). So we wanted to hear from you about the gray areas. Let’s us know all your thoughts on porn — the good, the bad, the ugly — in the comments below.