Just when you think you've heard it all, chile. I recently read an article with a title that truly needs no further explanation. Ready? "Why I Sometimes Wear My Vaginal Juice As Perfume". It's not that I'm not aware of the fact that all of us have a signature vaginal scent and, so long as we're healthy and it's not pungent, men are naturally attracted to it (which is one of the billions of reasons why douching is totally unnecessary). It's just that, the thought of reaching down in order to put some of my vaginal fluid on my neck? Maybe I'm more prudish than I thought I was (I'm a Gemini, so it couldn't be that), but it's gonna be a hard pass for me.
Still, sometimes you come across things because it ends up "connecting the dots" to other stuff, and that's just what that read did for me. As I did some digging around about the power of scent, as it specifically relates to attraction and sex, here are some of the things that I discovered.
- Scent-wise, did you know that we're attracted to people whose genes do not match our own?
- Did you know that women are naturally attracted to the smell of a man's shaved arm pits?
- Did you know that, as far as pheromones go, we actually are drawn to a little bit of funk?
- Or that there's solid research to support that foods like donuts, cinnamon buns, cheese pizza, chocolate and cola also turn us on? (Think about that the next time you have a craving for one of those things.)
- And yes, if you heard somewhere that the combination of pumpkin essential oil and lavender essential oil can increase the blood flow into a man's penis by 40 percent, that is absolutely true.
This is proof that we've been blessed with five senses—sight, hearing, touch, taste and yes, smell—and they even play a role in appeal, captivation and copulation too. So since our sense of smell matters just as much as the rest of 'em, I thought it would be a good idea to share some all-natural aphrodisiacs that men are all for—along with where to put them and how to make them last long past the first wink…or kiss…or well, you know.
I can see why vanilla would be an aphrodisiac. It's got a scent that is soft and sweet; "delicious" is another word that immediately comes to mind. And yes, men adore it. One study revealed that when they are close to a woman who has vanilla on, the smell is able to increase sexual arousal in them by as much as nine percent. Research also reveals that it has a powerful calming effect on anxiety and has an incredible ability to soothe and relax, both men and women, as well.
If you and/or your man would prefer a scent that isn't too feminine, sandalwood has totally got your back. It's got an earthy/woodsy smell that is very sexy and alluring at the same time. It's the kind of oil that's great for your skin (including acne and psoriasis), some people use it as a deodorant alternative and, it stimulates the pheromones in men and women. For women, it increases the libido and in men, it can prevent impotence from transpiring.
Back in the day, cinnamon oil used to be my complete and total jam! It smells good, it tastes great and—how do I PG this?—it makes oral sex that much more pleasurable (how'd I do?). This is one of the oils that will literally warm you and your partner up. It also increase blood circulation, treats erectile dysfunction and, if you add a little honey and sweet almond oil to it, well…kindly refer back to what I said about it and oral sex. Total. Game. Changer.
This might just qualify as your something new for the day.
I find this particular essential oil to be awesome because legend has it that men in certain parts of African used to chew on Carpolobia root an hour or so before sex in order to enhance their sexual performance (so it must be good!).
There are also studies to support that this is an herb that helps to heal male infertility while boosting the libido of men and women in the process.
As far as finding it goes, it's not nearly as easy as the rest of the oils on this list. But I did find a connect on Etsy if you're interested in giving it a shot.
5. Black Licorice
If you're not the biggest fan of black licorice, strictly from a taste standpoint, I'll just say this—it does have some pretty impressive health benefits. It's got the ability to cleanse your respiratory system, reduce stress, treat eczema, soothe the symptoms that are directly related to heartburn, stomach ulcers and food poisoning. So, if you'd prefer not to eat it, consider sipping on some black licorice tea. Or, putting it on your body. When men get a whiff of it, it increases sexual arousal in them by as much as 13 percent; that amount jumps all the way up to 32 percent if they smell licorice in combination with donuts.
An essential oil that has the ability to relieve depression-related symptoms, prevent nightmares (pretty crazy, huh?) and boost your self-confidence is the delicate feminine scent of rose. Rose is also able to help stabilize mood swings and regulate menstrual cycles. Plus, it has an uncanny way of "triggering" our body's natural sex hormones. It's another scent that increases blood circulation too. The more blood that's down below, the longer the erections and the more intense the orgasms are too.
7. Pink Grapefruit
I like to drink pink grapefruit juice. Good thing too because, on the health-tip, it's a fruit that boosts our immune system, helps to control our blood sugar levels, aids in weight loss, improves heart health and can even help to prevent asthma attacks. It makes this list because, along with increasing blood circulation and giving us more energy, interestingly enough, the smell of pink grapefruit makes us appear somewhere around 5-6 years younger. Like it or not, youth is a big turn on to a lot of guys so, there you go.
Jasmine is very sweet and romantic. It's one of my favorites, for sure. It's an oil that works as an antidepressant and sedative. It also encourages positive thoughts, and it's very sensual.
In fact, in certain parts of India, jasmine is the signature wedding flower because of its ability to enhance feelings of love and desire.
Use it as an oil to shave your legs (it reduces irritation) or a DIY massage oil ingredient. You won't regret it. He won't either.
Honorable Mention: Popcorn
Yep, you read that right. If you're someone who loves diving into a big bowl of popcorn, the fiber, whole grains, minerals and vitamins make it a healthy snack. Just make sure that you totally avoid the microwavable kind; the lining of the bag can actually decrease your libido (among other things).
And yes, if you're eating someone while sitting on the couch and watching a movie with your boo, there's a good chance that he won't be paying too much attention to what's on the screen. Popcorn is also an aphrodisiac scent. If there's butter on it, it can spike up a man's drive by nine percent (ain't that a trip?).
Where to Place Aphrodisiac Oils on Your Body
What a little trial and error (combined with some additional research) have taught me is knowing where to put an aphrodisiac scent is about as important as the one that you choose.
First, make sure that you pay attention to what is known as your "pulse points"; those are the areas of your body where your blood vessels are the closest to your skin; they produce more heat which can intensify the scent. Where exactly are some of your points? Places like your inner wrists, right where your elbow bends, the base of your neck, behind your earlobes and knees and in between your breasts are some good ones.
As far as your wrists go, just make sure to not do what a lot of us are guilty of doing—applying an oil or perfume and then rubbing our wrists together. What that ends up doing is activating too much of our natural body chemistry which could end up diluting or "crushing" the authenticity or potency of the smell.
Something else to keep in mind is, if you're using one of these oils as a way to heat up a night of passion, not all essential oils are edible (you can read more about that here). Plus, not all of them taste the best. Keep that in mind as you're contemplating where to place your favorite scent (cinnamon and vanilla taste great, by the way). One way to kinda get around the non-edible kind is to put those oils onto your hands and rub them over your lingerie; that way, your body will smell like the oil sans experiencing the bitter or icky taste of it.
How to Make Essential Oils Last for Hours on End
If you want to make an aphrodisiac scent last from the moment you put it on until the time you get it on, one way to do that is to create a mist with the essential oil in it and lightly mist your hair. Between the essential oil and your own hair's natural oils, the scent will remain on your tresses for hours.
Another cool tip is to put 10-15 drops of one of these oils into a fragrance-free moisturizer or carrier oil like grapeseed, almond, jojoba, sweet almond or avocado oil. The scent will be amazing, and your skin will be silky soft.
Something else that can make essential oils more potent is combining them. It may take a couple of tries to get exactly what you're looking for, but I'm a big fan of this too because it can create a signature scent that no one else has (and you don't have to tell anyone about).
Just one more thing. If your plan is to apply a little bit of the oil to your vaginal region, make sure to also dilute it with a carrier oil and to put it on your vulva, not in your vagina. If you want to be taken totally out of the mood, avoid this pearl of wisdom and see what happens (burn baby, burn!).
Well, there you have it. Whether it's for a hot date or a very sexy night, here's a cheat sheet on how to make you even more unforgettable—from the very moment he catches even a little whiff of your totally intoxicating scent.
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Different puzzle pieces are creating bigger pictures these days. 2024 will mark a milestone on a few different levels, including the release of my third book next June (yay!).
I am also a Professional Certified Coach. My main mission for attaining that particular goal is to use my formal credentials to help people navigate through the sometimes tumultuous waters, both on and offline, when it comes to information about marriage, sex and relationships that is oftentimes misinformation (because "coach" is a word that gets thrown around a lot, oftentimes quite poorly).
I am also still super devoted to helping to bring life into this world as a doula, marriage life coaching will always be my first love (next to writing, of course), a platform that advocates for good Black men is currently in the works and my keystrokes continue to be devoted to HEALTHY over HAPPY in the areas of holistic intimacy, spiritual evolution, purpose manifestation and self-love...because maturity teaches that it's impossible to be happy all of the time when it comes to reaching goals yet healthy is a choice that can be made on a daily basis (amen?).
If you have any PERSONAL QUESTIONS (please do not contact me with any story pitches; that is an *editorial* need), feel free to reach out at firstname.lastname@example.org. A sistah will certainly do what she can. ;)
Exclusive: Gabrielle Union On Radical Transparency, Being Diagnosed With Perimenopause And Embracing What’s Next
Whenever Gabrielle Union graces the movie screen, she immediately commands attention. From her unforgettable scenes in films like Bring It On and Two Can Play That Game to her most recent film, in which she stars and produces Netflix’s The Perfect Find, there’s no denying that she is that girl.
Off-screen, she uses that power for good by sharing her trials and tribulations with other women in hopes of helping those who may be going through the same things or preventing them from experiencing them altogether. Recently, the Flawless by Gabrielle Union founder partnered with Clearblue to speak at the launch of their Menopause Stage Indicator, where she also shared her experience with being perimenopausal.
In a xoNecoleexclusive, the iconic actress opens up about embracing this season of her life, new projects, and overall being a “bad motherfucker.” Gabrielle reveals that she was 37 years old when she was diagnosed with perimenopause and is still going through it at 51 years old. Mayo Clinic says perimenopause “refers to the time during which your body makes the natural transition to menopause, marking the end of the reproductive years.”
“I haven't crossed over the next phase just yet, but I think part of it is when you hear any form of menopause, you automatically think of your mother or grandmother. It feels like an old-person thing, but for me, I was 37 and like not understanding what that really meant for me. And I don't think we focus so much on the word menopause without understanding that perimenopause is just the time before menopause,” she tells us.
Photo by Brian Thomas
"But you can experience a lot of the same things during that period that people talk about, that they experienced during menopause. So you could get a hot flash, you could get the weight gain, the hair loss, depression, anxiety, like all of it, mental health challenges, all of that can come, you know, at any stage of the menopausal journey and like for me, I've been in perimenopause like 13, 14 years. When you know, most doctors are like, ‘Oh, but it's usually about ten years, and I'm like, ‘Uhh, I’m still going (laughs).’”
Conversations about perimenopause, fibroids, and all the things that are associated with women’s bodies have often been considered taboo and thus not discussed publicly. However, times are changing, and thanks to the Gabrielle’s and the Tia Mowry’s, more women are having an authentic discourse about women’s health. These open discussions lead to the creation of more safe spaces and support for one another.
“I want to be in community with folks. I don't ever want to feel like I'm on an island about anything. So, if I can help create community where we are lacking, I want to be a part of that,” she says. “So, it's like there's no harm in talking about it. You know what I mean? Like, I was a bad motherfucker before perimenopause. I’m a bad motherfucker now, and I'll be a bad motherfucker after menopause. Know what I’m saying? None of that has to change. How I’m a bad motherfucker, I welcome that part of the change. I'm just getting better and stronger and more intelligent, more wise, more patient, more compassionate, more empathetic. All of that is very, very welcomed, and none of it should be scary.”
The Being Mary Jane star hasn’t been shy about her stance on therapy. If you don’t know, here’s a hint: she’s all for it, and she encourages others to try it as well. She likens therapy to dating by suggesting that you keep looking for the right therapist to match your needs. Two other essential keys to her growth are radical transparency and radical acceptance (though she admits she is still working on the latter).
"I was a bad motherfucker before perimenopause. I’m a bad motherfucker now, and I'll be a bad motherfucker after menopause. Know what I’m saying? None of that has to change. How I’m a bad motherfucker, I welcome that part of the change."
Gabrielle Union and Kaavia Union-Wade
Photo by Monica Schipper/Getty Images
“I hope that a.) you recognize that you're not alone. Seek out help and know that it's okay to be honest about what the hell is happening in your life. That's the only way that you know you can get help, and that's also the only other way that people know that you are in need if there's something going on,” she says, “because we have all these big, very wild, high expectations of people, but if they don't know what they're actually dealing with, they're always going to be failing, and you will always be disappointed. So how about just tell the truth, be transparent, and let people know where you are. So they can be of service, they can be compassionate.”
Gabrielle’s transparency is what makes her so relatable, and has so many people root for her. Whether through her TV and film projects, her memoirs, or her social media, the actress has a knack for making you feel like she’s your homegirl. Scrolling through her Instagram, you see the special moments with her family, exciting new business ventures, and jaw-dropping fashion moments. Throughout her life and career, we’ve seen her evolve in a multitude of ways. From producing films to starting a haircare line to marriage and motherhood, her journey is a story of courage and triumph. And right now, in this season, she’s asking, “What’s next?”
“This is a season of discovery and change. In a billion ways,” says the NAACP Image Award winner. “The notion of like, ‘Oh, so and so changed. They got brand new.’ I want you to be brand new. I want me to be brand new. I want us to be always constantly growing, evolving. Having more clarity, moving with different purpose, like, and all of that is for me very, very welcomed."
"I want you to be brand new. I want me to be brand new. I want us to be always constantly growing, evolving. Having more clarity, moving with different purpose, like, and all of that is for me very, very welcomed."
She continues, “So I'm just trying to figure out what's next. You know what I mean? I'm jumping into what's next. I'm excited going into what's next and new. I'm just sort of embracing all of what life has to offer.”
Look out for Gabrielle in the upcoming indie film Riff Raff, which is a crime comedy starring her and Jennifer Coolidge, and she will also produce The Idea of You, which stars Anne Hathaway.
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The 26-year-old model and socialite shared with PEOPLE at the Femme It Forward's 2nd Annual Give Her FlowHERS Gala that she believes the key to a lasting relationship is establishing a strong connection before entering into a romantic relationship.
During the event, the socialite spoke to the outlet about the importance of “friendship and trust” in her three-year relationship that started in the midst of the pandemic.
“We were really good friends before we started dating, and COVID gave us that free time in our life to really get to know each other,” Jordyn said. “Because a lot of people don't really get to know each other and they go into this relationship.”
She continues, “So, we've been through a lot together. We've seen each other at all different ways, times, phases, so I think we have a very strong foundation.”
Jordyn also notes that “quality time” has been a means to bond and keep their relationship thriving. Despite the NBA star’s demanding schedule, she expressed her desire to attend as many of KAT's games as possible, including his upcoming birthday game with the Minnesota Timberwolves. “It's his birthday in a few days, so I'm going to go to that game,” she says.
Quality time isn’t the only love language that the couple speaks.“We love gift giving and... What is it? The love language? The love language is quality time. We love everything,” she says.
The couple was introduced by mutual friends many years ago, and in May 2020 decided to move forward from a close friendship to a romantic relationship. Jordyn and KAT went public with their relationship in September of that same year and have since become young Hollywood’s discreet “IT” couple.
“I'm excited. Every holiday, we like to really go large for each other,” she explained. “He does so much for me. I do what I can for him. I want to say it's a lot. So when it's time to show that appreciation, we like to go all out.”
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