Every year, Saturn, also known as the "Lord of Karma", goes retrograde giving us a chance to reassess our personal limits, progression, and reputation. Saturn has been transiting its home sign Capricorn since 2017, helping us whip ourselves into shape to achieve the success we strive for, particularly related to career endeavors. This Saturn retrograde, taking place from April 29th up until September 6th, invites us to rise to the occasion.
The pressure is on this Summer and as much as you may want to shirk off all responsibilities to enjoy some fun in the sun, now is the time to dig deep within for the motivation and discipline needed to stay on top of your game.
This transit has the ability to offer powerful breakthroughs in at least one area of life, given your hard work and dedication (word to the late Nipsey Hussle). Saturn in Capricorn teaches us to embrace the gifts that come with running this marathon called life. The obstacles you experience will either make you or break you. It may feel like the pressure is on to get more serious in at least one area of your life but Saturn retrograde can help you face these challenges with a more empowered perspective. Your responsibilities will likely pile up over the next few months which also makes this transit an important time to reassess what you're invested in. It may be time to implement those boundaries and get comfortable saying "No" to things that distract you from handling business.
Check out how Saturn retrograde affects your zodiac sign this Summer:
Your career and public image will require a little extra effort during the next few months. As much as you want to let off the gas, now is the time to keep moving forward. However, this progression doesn't have to be about the big moves you're making in the eye of the public. Saturn retrograde is actually the perfect opportunity for you to tend to the details and develop yourself behind the scenes.
When it comes to your employer, you'll likely be reevaluating whether you're in the right place or not. You may be at a job solely for security purposes while lacking the actual passion for the work itself. This transit is initiating your paradigm shift from worker bee to queen bee. Just be mindful of any power struggles with your boss while you're in this transitory phase. By the time Saturn goes direct in September, you can very well find yourself in a position of greater influence, power, and respect.
The next few months challenges you to come into your own beliefs that may not be the most conventional. Saturn retrograde in Capricorn invites us to dissolve the powers that be and for you, this power is related to your ideologies about God/Higher Self/whatever you wanna call "it". This Summer gives you the opportunity to explore the depths of your own wisdom instead of putting so much energy into external factors.
The same power that you pray to lives within you as well.
During this transit, your intuition will reach new levels. However, this can come with some pushback from people attempting to control you especially if you've got a spiritual teacher or mentor that's been invested in your development. You may decide that the boundaries within this connection need to be adjusted or the connection needs to be completely dissolved. Trust your instincts and know that your soul is guiding you towards your personal ascension regardless of how unconventional your path seems.
Saturn retrograde is bringing down the hammer in a more sensitive part of your chart which can feel like a whole lot of inner chaos. Your psyche is undergoing a massive transformation over the next few months as you revisit some painful experiences that stripped you of your power. This is a time to reevaluate what a healthy relationship to power is. In the past, you may have been involved with people who mismanaged, manipulated, and even abused their influence in your life which has jaded your own perception of what it truly means to be in your power.
This Summer you'll be stripping away the false narratives that diminish your capabilities to achieve the blessings that are meant for you. Emotional volatility is common during this time. Meet yourself, wherever you are, with compassion. Seek to understand the suppressed emotions forcing their way into your conscious awareness. In due time, you will rise like the Phoenix from the ashes in all of your glory.
Things are getting serious in the relationship department this Summer. Do I hear wedding bells? Sorry if I ruined the surprise but quite a few of you are in store for a proposal during this transit. This energy is make or break season when it comes to a significant relationship in your life. Saturn retrograde can be a challenging transit that requires you to consider what you really want when it comes to your long-term growth. Can you see you and this person truly going the distance? By September, you'll have your answer.
If you're not in a committed relationship, this transit can highlight where you need to make adjustments in a business partnership or employment contract. Reassess whether your current job has growth potential. If not, this is a good time to revamp your resume and explore other options. You could very well find yourself in a cushy position with more authority come the end of the Summer.
Saturn retrograde gives you the opportunity to reassess your routines, habits, and health. You may be overexerting yourself in one area of your life which has resulted in some unhealthy habits, whether it be an addiction to caffeine, working yourself to the bone, or neglecting your fitness routine.
The next few months is the divine intervention you need to whip you into shape both literally and figuratively speaking. This is a time to recommit to what matters to you most.
Getting back into your fitness routine is encouraged along with implementing more well-rounded, nutritious eating habits in your life. If you've been experiencing any strange physical symptoms, make that appointment with your doctor. It's better to be proactive instead of waiting for a minor problem to escalate into something more serious. Changes in your workplace or schedule are likely at this time. Figuring out a routine that works best for you to maintain your well-being is supported.
The next few months brings your attention to romance, adventure, and creative expression. You may be considering a more serious commitment with someone you've been casually dating or weeding out people that don't have long-term potential. Saturn retrograde can bring on a more serious approach to our lives and if you've been excessively all about play, it's time to snap back into reality. Don't worry. Your pockets will thank you for this hiatus from all of your wining and dining, traveling, and entertainment.
If you have children, you may find them particularly demanding (as in expensive) during this transit. School is out for the summer which means higher bills, more trips to the grocery store, and tons of extracurricular activities that keep the lil' ones out of trouble. This Summer doesn't have to be a major wash out. You should still get out and enjoy yourself on occasion but keep in mind that you don't have to splurge to have a good time.
Saturn retrograde brings your focus to your family, home, and roots. You may be on the receiving end of a lot of pressure from your family, particularly the mother, during this transit. Traditions that run in your lineage are up for review over the next few months as you seek to discover who you are as an individual. There may be a significant person in your life attempting to shape and mold you into their idea of you. However, you're encouraged to draw the line in the sand when it comes to the way you choose to live your life.
If you've been struggling with breaking through some generational patterns, the "Lord of Karma" can assist in this transformation. Depending on what stage you're at in life, this is a great time to look into buying a home or relocating. Give yourself the next few months to get into the details before making your decision. If you're interested in starting a family, use this transit to create your fertility plan.
As one of the most sensitive signs of the zodiac, you have the tendency to get enmeshed in other people's lives swiftly and easily. Your empathic nature causes you to experience the pain of others on a visceral level that not everyone can relate to. Your soothing vibes make you a magnet for people seeking wisdom, guidance, and nurturing. Unfortunately, this can be a detriment to you if you don't keep your limits in mind.
It's important for you to understand the difference between enabling others and actually helping them. You can't do the work for people nor can you be everyone to everybody.
During this transit, you're encouraged to take a backseat from the affairs of siblings, friends, and even your online community to focus your energy on packaging your gems of wisdom into something more tangible like that memoir or self-help book you've been putting to the back-burner.
During this Summer, you'll be challenged to set better boundaries when it comes to your finances. If you've been overspending or too generous with your money, it's time to reel it in, Ms. Money Bags. The next few months is an opportune time to reassess your budget as well as your source(s) of income. Maybe you've been exerting too much energy into an endeavor and not getting the return you expected.
Saturn retrograde often brings harsh realities with it. Be honest about how disciplined you've been in working towards your goals. During this transit you may also realize how your skills and talents are being undervalued in your current role. Seek opportunities that align with what you truly love to do by unraveling any lack-based programming that inhibits you from receiving the wealth that the Universe has to offer.
Saturn retrograde encourages you to reevaluate how you've been delegating your time and energy across all aspects of your life since the "Lord of Karma" is transiting your sign. Over the next few months, you'll be refining your personal image and how you want to be received by the world. This could involve something as simple as a makeover, but on a deeper level this transit is requiring you to make some adjustments when it comes to your behavior as well.
If you've been hiding in the shadows, now is the time to come front and center stage. Opportunities can't find you if you're playing hide and seek.
Saturn retro is also about recommitting to yourself by establishing boundaries between your own shit and what belongs to others. If you've been picking up the slack for someone else, they're likely in for a rude awakening during this transit. You've got enough on your plate as is. Be realistic about your limits and don't feel guilty about this crucial time in which you'll experience exponential growth within yourself and towards your personal goals.
This Summer brings your attention inwards to a more low-key part of your chart that will challenge you in the area of your subconscious patterns and self-sabotaging habits. Your dreams can be extremely insightful during this transit, gifting you with insight into your past, and potentially past lives, that helps you see how you've become entangled in a narrative of defeat and powerlessness. The next few months are best served diving deeper into your spiritual connection and developing your faith in the divine which ultimately lies within you.
For many of the other zodiac signs, this Saturn retrograde will be an external experience involving the more tangible aspects of life. Your experience, however, is more of an internal battle between your conscious and subconscious mind. As grueling as a transit in your 12th house can be, understand that the Universe is not punishing you. Remember, babe. Pressure makes diamonds.
OK, Pisces. Saturn retrograde isn't your favorite time of the year due to your boundless, carefree nature. However, this transit will challenge you to draw the line between what's yours and what isn't. Your friendships and social networks are undergoing some adjustments over the next few months. As open and giving as you usually are, you may be feeling the burn of unreciprocated effort from some of the people in your tribe.
Instead of doing that thing where you try to force people to get on board, your energy will be better served in the pursuit of new connections. This doesn't mean you have to burn any bridges as you expand into new social territories. You're just learning how to better compartmentalize the relationships that don't offer as much value to your mission in life. Collaborating with more like-hearted individuals is favorable this Summer and you're likely to make some lifelong connections with some special people.
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This article is in partnership with Sensodyne.
Our teeth are connected to so many things - our nutrition, our confidence, and our overall mood. We often take for granted how important healthy teeth are, until issues like tooth sensitivity or gum recession come to remind us. Like most things related to our bodies, prevention is the best medicine. Here are five things you can do immediately to improve your oral hygiene, prevent tooth sensitivity, and avoid dental issues down the road.
1) Go Easy On the Rough Brushing: Brushing your teeth is and always will be priority number one in the oral hygiene department. No surprises there! However, there is such a thing as applying too much pressure when brushing…and that can lead to problems over time. Use a toothbrush with soft bristles and brush in smooth, circular motions. It may seem counterintuitive, but a gentle approach to brushing is the most effective way to clean those pearly whites without wearing away enamel and exposing sensitive areas of the teeth.
2) Use A Desensitizing Toothpaste: As everyone knows, mouth pain can be highly uncomfortable; but tooth sensitivity is a whole different beast. Hot weather favorites like ice cream and popsicles have the ability to trigger tooth sensitivity, which might make you want to stay away from icy foods altogether. But as always, prevention is the best medicine here. Switching to a toothpaste like Sensodyne’s Sensitivity & Gum toothpaste specifically designed for sensitive teeth will help build a protective layer over sensitive areas of the tooth. Over time, those sharp sensations that occur with extremely cold foods will subside, and you’ll be back to treating yourself to your icy faves like this one!
3) Floss, Rinse, Brush. (And In That Order!): Have you ever heard the saying, “It’s not what you do, but how you do it”? Well, the same thing applies to taking care of your teeth. Even if you are flossing and brushing religiously, you could be missing out on some of the benefits simply because you aren’t doing so in the right order. Flossing is best to do before brushing because it removes food particles and plaque from places your toothbrush can’t reach. After a proper flossing sesh, it is important to rinse out your mouth with water after. Finally, you can whip out your toothbrush and get to brushing. Though many of us commonly rinse with water after brushing to remove excess toothpaste, it may not be the best thing for our teeth. That’s because fluoride, the active ingredient in toothpaste that protects your enamel, works best when it gets to sit on the teeth and continue working its magic. Rinsing with water after brushing doesn’t let the toothpaste go to work like it really can. Changing up your order may take some getting used to, but over time, you’ll see the difference.
4) Stay Hydrated: Upping your water supply is a no-fail way to level up your health overall, and your teeth are no exception to this rule. Drinking water not only helps maintain a healthy pH balance in your mouth, but it also washes away residue and acids that can cause enamel erosion. It also helps you steer clear of dry mouth, which is a gateway to bad breath. And who needs that?
5) Show Your Gums Some Love: When it comes to improving your smile, you may be laser-focused on getting your teeth whiter, straighter, and overall healthier. Rightfully so, as these are all attributes of a megawatt smile; but you certainly don’t want to leave gum health out of the equation. If you neglect your gums, you’ll start to notice the effects of plaque buildup, which can irritate the gums and cause gingivitis, the earliest stage of gum disease. Seeing blood while brushing and flossing is a tell-tale sign that your gums are suffering. You may also experience gum recession — a condition where the gum tissue surrounding your teeth pulls back, exposing more of your tooth. Brushing at least twice a day with a gum-protecting toothpaste like Sensodyne Sensitivity and Gum, coupled with regular dentist visits, will keep your gums shining as bright as those pearly whites.
Hands down and without hesitation, my favorite time of the year is the fall season. I like the cooler temperatures. I like the turn of the leaves. Some of my favorite men (my late father and late fiancé) were Libras. Layering clothes is dope. I start to (slightly) swap out iced chai lattes (with oat milk) for hot chocolate and apple cider. The foods that are in season then are some of my faves (eggplant parmesan, anyone?). Watching sports outside is fun — need I go on? And so, even though I like to write about sex — especially ways to have even better sex — any time of the year, it’s right around now when I start to get inspired to pitch topics like this one.
And honestly, I ain’t got no lies for you. The reason why this headline has “2.0” in it is because it was right around this time, three years ago, when I penned the piece “Here's How To Have Some Really Great Fall-Themed Sex.” Well, I think it’s been long enough to “upgrade” it a bit by providing you with 15 other fall-related ideas that could cause you to literally fall in love with fall as much as I have…and quite possibly renew your enthusiasm in the bedroom in the process.
Can you feel yourself getting excited? LOL.
1. Pumpkin. Lots ‘n Lots of Pumpkin.
Pumpkin bread. Pumpkin lattes. Pumpkin pie. Pumpkin cheesecake. Pumpkin deviled eggs. It should go without saying that if there is a signature food for this time of year, pumpkin would be it. So, if you’re someone who is big on aphrodisiac consumption, definitely add more pumpkin into your diet, even if it’s snacking on pumpkin seeds. Between the zinc that’s in it, which helps to boost your libido (and can even help with erectile dysfunction in men) and the fatty acids that help to keep sex hormones in balance, every time you enjoy some of your favorite pumpkin-flavored foods, you’ll be giving your sex life quite the boost.
2. DIY Some Cranberry Seed Massage Oil
Another fruit (because, yes, pumpkin is indeed a fruit) that is at its best during the autumn season is the cranberry. Although many of us don’t give it much thought beyond the cranberry sauce that sits on the table during Thanksgiving, its scent is actually pretty sensual when you use it in the form of a scented soy candle or if you decide to make some of your own massage oil.
In fact, if you purchase organic cranberry seed oil, it naturally comes with a subtle cranberry scent which means that you can give your man a lingam massage (check out “Blow Your Man's Mind By Giving Him This Tantalizing Massage”) without worrying if the ingredients in the oil will irritate his penis in the process.
As far as how to make the oil, all you need is some cranberry seed oil, a favorite carrier oil (check out “So, Here Are The Carrier Oils That Will Take Your Sex Life To A Whole 'Nother Level”), and possibly a bit of honey (for flavoring’s sake) and you’re good to go; especially if you heat it up in the microwave for like 10 seconds before applying. Whew, chile.
3. Also, DIY Some Pear-Flavored Whipped Cream
Another fruit that’s in season for fall is a pear. I like them, not just for how they taste, but because they symbolize things like abundance, femininity, fertility, and happy relationships — all of which are awesome things to think about when you’re sharing intimacy with your partner. That said, you know, there is nothing quite like bringing in a condiment or two during sex (check out “12 ‘Sex Condiments’ That Can Make Coitus Even More...Delicious”), and so, if whipped cream is totally your thing, how about making some that is pear-flavored? I found a recipe that is super easy (so long as you have some xanthan gum around). You can check it out here.
4. Incorporate Some Vanilla Lubricant
Another popular scent for autumn is vanilla. As far as your sex life is concerned, science backs that the smell of it can increase sexual arousal and even improve sexual performance in some people. Since pretty much all of us know that sex is so much better when it’s wetter, it might also be a good idea to have some vanilla (especially vanilla-flavored) lubricant on tap. Hello Cake has a vanilla chai lube that is a fan favorite (you can get it here). I also peeped a TikTok post that features a DIY recipe for this kind of lube (here), although it needs to go on record that it’s not the kind that you would incorporate if you use condoms (because there’s oil in it). Just sayin’.
5. Make Some Maple Syrup-Flavored Lip Butter
Is there anything better than a stack of homemade pancakes or French toast with some maple syrup on a cold weekend morning? Take the maple flavor up a notch by making some lip butter that tastes just like it. You know, I was recently talking to a group of guys about some of their underrated turn-ons, and one of them said that when a woman exfoliates her lips, he can always tell because they feel extra soft. Let that be a reminder that taking a couple of minutes out to apply a lip scrub ain’t never hurt nobody. Then, if you add some lip butter afterwards?
Girrrl…he’ll be all up in your mouth from sunset to sunrise! (No, I didn’t forget. The lip butter recipe is here.)
6. Add Some Lit Vines Around Your Bed
It’s kind of wild how much people underestimate the sensuality of good lighting when you’re trying to set the mood. Although candlelight is always a bomb option, if you want to think a little outside of the box, there are vines that you can purchase to put around your bed. I found some on Amazon (here) that can make you and your partner feel like y’all are in an enchanted forest or a log cabin somewhere — until you can actually get there. Plus, this kind of lighting can be sexy because it can cast shadows on your body without making you feel super self-conscious in the way that overhead lighting or a lamp (with a bright bulb) could.
7. Put Some Fairy Lights in Some Mason Jars
As far as lighting goes, another option to consider is putting some fairy lights into a couple of mason jars. I find this option to be very romantic as well as seductive. Plus, if you’re looking to create a sexy night at the last minute, you can find the lights and the jars pretty easily and at a reasonable price. For instance, a quick Walmart run would have you covered, all the way around.
8. Apply Some Apple and/or Caramel-Scented Fabric Spray
When it comes to attraction, looks aren’t everything. Studies reveal that how someone smells can help you decide if you’re truly interested in them or not. Not only that, but scent can impact your mood and performance ability, and, I’ve shared before that people with smell sensitivities tend to get aroused more easily; some women who fall into that demographic are able to have more orgasms too.
For all of these reasons (and probably more), you definitely should pay attention to how things smell in your bedroom prior to copulating. Something that you can do to make your bedding smell delightful is to either find a fabric spray that smells like fall-themed things such as apples or even caramel. I even found one on Amazon that is a combination of the two (here). #yourewelcome
9. Create Some Fall-Themed Potpourri
Do you want to keep some of the scents from your favorite summer flowers around for longer? Or maybe you want to avoid spending money on Air Wick and Glade Plug-Ins. Either way, something else to consider is making some of your own potpourri. I grew up with that in the house, and it really did make every room of the home smell divine. A YouTube Short that will walk you through how to make a fall-themed one is located right here.
10. Design a “Fallen Leaves with Love Notes” Hanging
While I was playing around on the internet a couple of days ago, I happened upon a page that was full of fall-centered arts and crafts. One that I liked, especially, was a hanging that had faux fall leaves on it (it’s #9 here). After looking at it, I thought, “Now, how sweet would it be to add some handwritten cards or Post-its that either express how someone feels about their partner or what they want to do to their partner?” You can even switch it up every couple of weeks to add some spontaneity. Just putting it on out there for you home décor (who also happen to be horny) folks.
11. Invest in Some Silk Sheets
If you go to your favorite search engine and you put something along the lines of “silk and warmth,” you will see all kinds of articles that cosign on the fact that although silk is light and soft, it also is a temperature regulator that has the ability to keep you warm. So, as the temperature drops and you’re looking for some sheets that will feel good to the touch, don’t have as much “heat generating potential” as flannel, and can bring sensuality into your space, investing in some silk sheets is definitely the way to go.
12. Pick Up Some Fall-Themed Lingerie
If you’re getting new bras and panties (roughly) twice a year (because that is what you’re doing…right?), you should put in your budget to cop some new sexy lingerie while you’re at it. Basically, some new stuff for spring and summer and some new different stuff for fall and winter. Since Black women look AMAZING in jewel tones (which are big during the holiday season), knock yourself out — or even go with something that particularly caught my eye called “Fall Fire Lingerie” (here). Husbands are constantly telling me that when their wife puts on something that they haven’t seen before, it’s like Christmas all over again. So, why not ring in Christmas early this year, a few times? Real talk.
13. Hang Some Eucalyptus Vines on Your Showerhead
Listen, the past couple of weeks, I know of several people who’ve gotten COVID; one had to be hospitalized. So, although I am a huge fan of shower sex (check out “So, This Is How To Make Shower Sex So Much Better”) and I absolutely think that bringing some greenery into the space is visually appealing, there is another reason why I’m making this suggestion.
Fresh eucalyptus has the ability to relieve congestion, suppress coughing, and make it easier to breathe. So, since the fall and winter seasons are the time of year when people tend to have more colds, be proactive and hang some of these vines from your showerhead. It looks great, it’s good for you, and it can help to keep both of you from passing unwanted germs back and forth.
14. Swap Out Your Light Bulbs for Something…with a Deeper Glow
Oh, here’s another lighting idea. So, what if you prefer to have sex when it’s pitch black and your partner would like a little bit of mood lighting? Colors like red and orange definitely fit in with autumn — and they also can be a real turn-on in the bedroom if you swap out your white bulbs for ones that are that color instead. They can also help you to relax when you’re all caught up in the afterglow of things too. #wink
15. Enjoy a Fall Fruit Aphrodisiac Cocktail
Whether it’s red wine, whisky, or tequila — all of them can get you where you’re good to go. That’s why, it only seemed right to wrap this up by recommending that you make a cocktail out of a fruit that’s in season this fall, whether it’s apples, pears, figs, passionfruit, pomegranates or something else that tickles your, umm, fancy. A girlfriend of mine is a huge — and I mean, HUGE — fan of fig and honey cocktails (recipe here) and ginger pomegranate martinis (recipe here) as far as her libido goes. She’s got sex stories for days, so…I’d at least give it a shot (no pun intended).
LAWD. Who thought that fall could be this damn sexy, right? Enjoy, sis. ENJOY!
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