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Top 5 Love Lessons from “The Bachelorette” (Andi on Hometown Dates)

July 8, 2014

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  1. When wooing someone — especially someone with an intellectual career — avoid these decidedly unsexy words and phrases: “it’s hard work,” “don’t be afraid to get your hands dirty,” “gumption,” “there’s no limits for a woman on a farm,” and “homemaker” (even if the person wouldn’t mind being a stay-at-home parent, there’s something so negatively old-fashioned about that word).
  2. Be aware of your “tells” on a date, e.g. a frowny-mouth relationship-barometer (the deeper the frown, the more turned off/disingenuous/full of it you are). Don’t give away your true feelings before you’ve given things a real chance. And if you have figured out your true feelings, then divulge them, don’t hide them behind your liar’s scowl.
  3. Don’t talk about your relationship like you’re doing a post-game interview: “I’ve worked hard for this, I’m ready for it, and I’m gonna give it 110%” (Josh).
  4. When you look exactly like your date’s mom and sister, consider that a HUGE red flag.
  5. Another HUGE red flag? When a close relative of your date tells you that his habit of “over-caring” can be totally “annoying.” ¬†Cut bait asap, just like Andi did.

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How to Give a Great Couples Massage

July 5, 2014

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sponsored post

When Denis Merkas, founder of “Melt: Massage for Couples,” asked us to review his online video series, we admit we were a bit trepidatious: images of sensitive ponytail men came to mind, the sound of cheesy tantric sitars filled our imaginations, and we thought we could suddenly smell a hint of patchouli in the air. But it turns out, we had nothing to worry about!

CouplesMassageCourses.com offers an informative, beautifully shot, sophisticated series of easy-to-follow instructional videos that can inspire couples to touch each other a little more deliberately and thoughtfully to make their lives together better (seriously, just watching the 2-minute promo below made us both want to be better partners). In each video, massage therapist Merkas — who has 13 years experience and has been perfecting these techniques for mass audiences since 2006 — tells you clearly what to do and why. His assistant in the videos is his own wife Emma — but before you start to worry the two are some HBO-ish “Real Sex,” hippy-dippy, swinging couple, rest assured, they’re adorable. And within the first minute of the quick intro video (see below), they make it clear their clothes are staying on: they provide the perfect back-rub techniques, then you can take it from there.

Here’s what we really liked about “Melt”:

  • Style: The website is beautifully designed. The videos are tastefully shot. Even their interstitial graphics are cool.
  • Charm: As host and instructor, Merkas seems like a genuinely nice guy who takes his job — and his wife’s pleasure — very seriously. But not too seriously. There’s a fine line between sophisticated seriousness and cheesy earnestness, and Merkas never crosses over to the dark side, even when he uses terms like “mushy mushy yum yum.” His cute Australian accent certainly doesn’t hurt!
  • Humor: We are automatically big fans of anyone who uses a Mr. Miyagi “wax on, wax off” reference when talking about massage do’s and don’ts.
  • Ease: Rather than one long daunting video that’s too intimidating to begin, Merkas breaks up the instruction into short, easy-to-process vids that are meticulously organized so you can ease into things, jump around, and review any specific technique you like at your own pace. Every technique is broken down and explained well with cute, easy-to-remember terms like “Train Tracks” and “The Cat Walk.”
  • Insider tips: No need for a massage table or other fancy props, just some useful tricks to make a sensual massage even better (for example, who knew the best place for a couples massage is not on the bed?!).
  • Choreographed routines: Included in the package are three massage “routines” — one 5 minutes, one 15 minutes, and one 30 minutes — that you can follow along with after you’ve mastered the various individual moves. Best part: Merkas offers each routine with or without commentary (hey, blindfold your partner and use the vids as a sort of silent cheat sheet!).
  • Effectiveness: Just ask Lo’s husband, who’s been in a zombie-like state of total bliss since she used him as her guinea pig.

Lifetime access to these 3 massage routines and 17 technique videos is usually $99. But from now until July 23rd, 2014, EMandLO.com readers can get Lifetime Access for ONLY $29, that’s more than 70% OFF! Use coupon code EMandLO to get the videos for ONLY $29. That’s certainly way less expensive than a date night out. So turn down the overheads, light some candles, and plan a great date night in with “Melt: Massage for Couples.”

 



Dream Interpretation: I Hooked Up with My BFF’s Crush

July 3, 2014

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 photo via flickr

Other people’s dreams are never interesting…except when they’re about sex. Each week, our dream analyst Lauri Loewenberg tells one lucky reader what their dirty dream means. Got a dream you want Lauri to analyze? Click here to submit it (18 and older only, please). This week, a reader asks Lauri:

Last night I had a dream about hooking up with this guy my best friend likes. I don’t feel anything about him and I can’t tell my friend — she might think I want him.

Lauri:¬†Yes, it is a good idea not to tell your friend about this dream. Even though it doesn’t mean what you might think, she still might get bent out of shape. Remember, dreams are symbolic, so this dream may not be so much about him, but rather about what he represents. And hooking up isn‚Äôt so much about a physical union you want but rather a psychological union you need.

That being said, what qualities stand out about this guy to you? Is he really funny? Is he easy going? Does he have strong opinions? Even though you may not be into him as far as chemistry is concerned, there is something about him your subconscious mind is attracted to and wants to unite that quality into yourself and make it your own.

We’ll also hook up with certain people in our dreams when we have “come together” with them on some level in real life… or when we NEED to come together on some level. Did you and this guy recently have a conversation where you connected in some way? Or maybe odds are good he’ll be dating your friend soon, so your subconscious mind is urging you to connect with him on some psychological level. Whatever it is, it’s all good!

Visit Lauri’s brand new site,¬†WhatYourDreamMeans.com, for even more dream interpretations! If you want to be able to figure out your own dreams every morning, then check out her latest book,¬†Dream On It: Unlock Your Dreams Change Your Life, which will give you the tools you need to become a dream expert, too.¬†Check out all of Lauri’s books here.

 

 

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Wise Guys: Do Men Ever Turn Down Casual Sex?

July 1, 2014

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Advice from three of our guy friends. This week they answer the following: Do guys ever turn down casual sex? To ask the guys your own question, click here.

Straight Married Guy (Jamie): My own experience with casual sex is a bit limited.¬† I was always a “girlfriend guy” and it was only between relationships that I occasionally had the chance to get freaky with someone I wasn’t dating.¬† I’m sure there are plenty of reasons why a guy might choose to go home to his Xbox over a no-strings-attached BJ, but in my case it was almost always because the girl was way too drunk.¬† Call me old-fashioned, but there’s just nothing sexy to me about that slack-jawed, half-lidded stare from some girl in a bar who spills most of her drink wobbling over to you to invite you home.¬† The couple of times I did go home with someone who was far less than sober, the sex was always overly urgent and awkward and (shocker!) I usually regretted it.

Straight Single Guy (Chris): Yes guys do, contrary to popular belief, turn down casual sex on occasion. The number one reason given, “That bitch was crazy!” It’s really simple. Guys love casual sex when it is actually casual. If the chances of the girl going sideways and stalking, calling every day thereafter, or crying hysterically is too high, the risk to reward ratio is simply not good enough to take the chance. In all likelihood, any guy who is trolling for casual sex has a handful of booty-call numbers in his phone anyway, and isn’t scared to use them.

Gay Married Guy (Jon Ross): Gay guys turning down casual sex is like Tara Reid turning down a drink, but it does happen from time to time. The reasons can include just about anything from “I’m too drunk” to “you’re too ugly,” to “I’m going shopping with my mom,” but I find the most common reason guys turn down casual sex is because they’re in or starting a more serious relationship. And straight guys? I don’t think they’re any different from gay guys in this respect (except for, perhaps, the shopping thing). To a lesser extent, guys abstain from doing it no-strings to avoid passing on any temporary if nasty bugs. Gotta be clean!

Our “guys” are a rotating group of contributors, some of whom wish to remain anonymous and some of whom like the attention. This week’s Gay Married Guy is Jon Ross and our Straight Single Guy is Chris DiClerico. To ask the guys your own question, click here.

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Top 5 Love Lessons from “The Bachelorette” (Andi in Belgium)

July 1, 2014

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photo courtesy of ABC/Geert Vanden Wijngaert

  1. It’s honorable to take the process of falling in love seriously (Marcus), but would it kill you to crack a joke once in a while? There’s a reason why people rank “sense of humor” as one of the most important qualities they look for in a mate.
  2. To quote Nick: “You’ll never get what you want if you don’t ask for it.”
  3. Guys, it’s great to be in touch with your emotions and allow yourselves to cry, even publicly (Nick, Dylan) — sincerely — but now you’ve got to work on being able to express your emotions, whether good or bad, verbally. Tripping over your words (Nick), being uber-vague about your feelings (Nick, Josh) — these things are only mildly endearing for so long.
  4. Sour grapes aren’t very appealing. You can’t control how others (Nick) behave, you (all the other bachelors) can only control your own behavior and hope that it will serve you karmically in the end. So don’t be the nice guy who becomes a bad guy by railing against the original bad guy.
  5. Never stay at a hotel that will give any rando who knows your name a key to your room!

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10 Ways to Sexify Your Gratitude Journal

June 27, 2014

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photo via Flickr

Everyone from Oprah to Real Simple to the guy at Harvard who teaches classes on happiness has talked about gratitude journals — you know, every night you write down, say, five things you were grateful for that day. Could be big things (my wonderful supportive family) or small (Honey Bunches of Oats at midnight).

Sounds too simplistic to make you feel better about your life, right? But if you’ve ever tried it then you know it actually works! So if you have a gratitude journal, great; if not, start one.

Then, make sure you dedicate at least one of the items on your list every day to something sex- or romance-related, to help you feel better about and really appreciate your love life. Here are 10 examples for inspiration:

  1. My Magic Wand
  2. The response I got on online personals today
  3. The delicious homemade dinner my partner cooked for me
  4. Choosing sex over tv
  5. The look on my spouse’s face when I surprised them with a pre-sex massage with Lelo oil
  6. Spontaneous declarations of love from my partner
  7. Organic natural lubricant
  8. My spouse’s inclination to split all house chores down the middle
  9. Discovered a new route to my orgasm!
  10. The adorable dimples my partner gets when s/he smiles


Dream Interpretation: I Keep Finding Babies

June 26, 2014

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Other people’s dreams are never interesting…except when they’re about sex. Each week, our dream analyst Lauri Loewenberg tells one lucky reader what their dirty dream means. Got a dream you want Lauri to analyze? Click here to submit it (18 and older only, please). This week, a reader asks Lauri:

I am 33 years old and in my second marriage. I have 2 boys from my previous marriage and cannot have anymore children. My current husband is quite fine being their dad, and their father is deceased. Sometimes I think I would love to have a little girl.

I keep having a recurring dream several times a month where i find an abandoned baby. The baby has been different races and sexes. In my dream I am very happy and love the baby dearly. I guard the baby because I don’t want anyone to know I have the baby, for fear the person who abandoned it will want it back, or child services will take it away.

The baby is found in very random places (one was under a car in an empty parking lot). In my dream I often get the strong feeling I want to adopt the baby but don’t know how to do it legally without involving other people that may make me lose the baby.

Very curious as to what this dream means. One time in the dream I went to my mom and asked her to have her RN friend forge a birth certificate that she’d seen me give birth to it. I am often filled with fear in my dream that someone will take it back when they know I have the baby. I never STEAL the baby. I FIND it.

Lauri: Babies in dreams are very common, even when one does not want another baby. Remember, dreams do not speak literally but rather symbolically. So the babies you keep dreaming of are not about a new addition to the family but rather a new addition to YOU! A baby is a new life, so in dreams they will represent a new life for the dreamer.

The interesting thing about your baby dreams is that rather than giving birth to the baby, you are finding an abandoned baby. That’s an important detail. So it seems there is some new element to your life — but not an element of your doing, such as writing a book or starting a group, but instead a new element where you may be picking up where someone else left off.

There’s also a lot of legal concern in this dream, which may very well mean there is legal concern over something you want to take on in your real life. If not actual legal concern, then moral concern.

So: What endeavor or idea are you wanting to take on as your own lately? Your dream seems to be saying that, despite your concerns, this endeavor needs you as much as you need it.

Visit Lauri’s brand new site,¬†WhatYourDreamMeans.com, for even more dream interpretations! If you want to be able to figure out your own dreams every morning, then check out her latest book,¬†Dream On It: Unlock Your Dreams Change Your Life, which will give you the tools you need to become a dream expert, too.¬†Check out all of Lauri’s books here.

 

 

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Wise Guys: Is It Really Such a Big Deal If I Hate Giving Blowjobs?

June 24, 2014

5 Comments

Advice from three of our guy friends. This week they answer the following: ‚ÄúI really hate going down on guys. I’ve tried it, I don’t like it. In fact, I loathe it. I feel bad about it, but if I don’t expect oral in return (I don’t), then why should I feel compelled to do something I don’t enjoy?‚ÄĚ

Straight Single Guy (Colin): Really there is no guy that should expect oral. It’s totally up to you what you feel comfortable with sexually and we’ll enjoy what you want to do. If you see it as a tit-for-tat deal and you’re not asking for anything, then you’re right, you shouldn’t feel compelled to return a favor you’re not receiving. As long as you’re upfront with your feelings on oral, then everything is okay. My only thought is that for the people we really care about, sometimes we do things we don’t necessarily enjoy just to make them feel good, to make them feel sexy, to make them feel special — and sometimes just to get them off. I don’t think you should feel obligated to be going downtown all the time like you’re Petula Clark or something, but don’t hurry to rule it out for good. It can be something special you pull out of your sexual toolkit only for true knights in shining armor.

Straight Married Guy (Matt): This is a tough one. I’d say it’s a very rare guy who isn’t going to want at least the occasional blowjob. I’ve actually never met one of these mythical creatures. Even if they do exist, how would you go about finding one? A personal ad title like “Must NOT Want Blowjobs” would probably result in crickets chirping in your empty inbox. So that leaves you with waiting until you’re at the point of discussing sexual details with a prospective partner to bring the topic up. Most guys aren’t going to be thrilled with your take on the matter, but sooner or later, maybe you’ll find a guy who doesn’t think blowjobs are all that great. But wouldn’t giving the occasional (special occasion) blowjob be a little easier than banking on these super longshot odds? I think so, but then I’m a guy. And like pretty much all guys, I’d seriously consider giving up food, water and shelter before blowjobs.

Gay Engaged Guy (Joel Derfner, author of Swish): If you don’t like going down on guys, there’s absolutely no reason you should feel compelled to do so.¬† However, there’s also absolutely no reason a guy should feel compelled to keep dating you if you won’t go down on him.¬† You just have to find somebody who gets his kicks in other ways. The pool will be much smaller, but that doesn’t mean there aren’t, um, fish to be had.

Our ‚Äúwise guys‚ÄĚ are a rotating group of contributors, some of whom wish to remain anonymous and some of whom like the attention. This week‚Äôs Gay Engaged Guy is Joel Derfner, author of Swish.¬†To ask the guys your own question, click here.

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Top 5 Love Lessons from The Bachelorette (Andi in Italy)

June 24, 2014

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screenshot from ABC’s “The Bachelorette”

  1. For the love of all that’s clean and right and good, wash your hands after you go to the bathroom! And not just when you’re on a date — every time.
  2. When on a date, don’t talk about how bad you are in bed, even if you’re just joking, for the truth is spoken in jest.
  3. Don’t give your date reason to paraphrase Shakespeare and say “Methinks thou doth protest too much.” (Getting all huffy over a playful lie detector test suggests you’ve got a lot to hide.)
  4. Straight men, please don’t have more cleavage than your female date. (We’re talking to you, Cody.)
  5. “Farting in the public” is okay, just make sure you don’t do it in the vicinity of your date.

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A Fantastic Guide to Couples Massage (with No Sensitive Ponytail Men!)

June 23, 2014

0 Comments

sponsored post

When Denis Merkas, founder of “Melt: Massage for Couples,” asked us to review his online video series, we admit we were a bit trepidatious: images of sensitive ponytail men came to mind, the sound of cheesy tantric sitars filled our imaginations, and we thought we could suddenly smell a hint of patchouli in the air. But it turns out, we had nothing to worry about!

CouplesMassageCourses.com offers an informative, beautifully shot, sophisticated series of easy-to-follow instructional videos that can inspire couples to touch each other a little more deliberately and thoughtfully to make their lives together better (seriously, just watching the 2-minute promo below made us both want to be better partners). In each video, massage therapist Merkas — who has 13 years experience and has been perfecting these techniques for mass audiences since 2006 — tells you clearly what to do and why. His assistant in the videos is his own wife Emma — but before you start to worry the two are some HBO-ish “Real Sex,” hippy-dippy, swinging couple, rest assured, they’re adorable. And within the first minute of the quick intro video (see below), they make it clear their clothes are staying on: they provide the perfect back-rub techniques, then you can take it from there.

Here’s what we really liked about “Melt”:

  • Style: The website is beautifully designed. The videos are tastefully shot. Even their interstitial graphics are cool.
  • Charm: As host and instructor, Merkas seems like a genuinely nice guy who takes his job — and his wife’s pleasure — very seriously. But not too seriously. There’s a fine line between sophisticated seriousness and cheesy earnestness, and Merkas never crosses over to the dark side, even when he uses terms like “mushy mushy yum yum.” His cute Australian accent certainly doesn’t hurt!
  • Humor: We are automatically big fans of anyone who uses a Mr. Miyagi “wax on, wax off” reference when talking about massage do’s and don’ts.
  • Ease: Rather than one long daunting video that’s too intimidating to begin, Merkas breaks up the instruction into short, easy-to-process vids that are meticulously organized so you can ease into things, jump around, and review any specific technique you like at your own pace. Every technique is broken down and explained well with cute, easy-to-remember terms like “Train Tracks” and “The Cat Walk.”
  • Insider tips: No need for a massage table or other fancy props, just some useful tricks to make a sensual massage even better (for example, who knew the best place for a couples massage is not on the bed?!).
  • Choreographed routines: Included in the package are three massage “routines” — one 5 minutes, one 15 minutes, and one 30 minutes — that you can follow along with after you’ve mastered the various individual moves. Best part: Merkas offers each routine with or without commentary (hey, blindfold your partner and use the vids as a sort of silent cheat sheet!).
  • Effectiveness: Just ask Lo’s husband, who’s been in a zombie-like state of total bliss since she used him as her guinea pig.

Lifetime access to these 3 massage routines and 17 technique videos is usually $99. But from now until July 23rd, 2014, EMandLO.com readers can get Lifetime Access for ONLY $29, that’s more than 70% OFF! Use coupon code EMandLO to get the videos for ONLY $29. That’s certainly way less expensive than a date night out. So turn down the overheads, light some candles, and plan a great date night in with “Melt: Massage for Couples.”