While research reveals that sexual activity between married and cohabiting couples is decreasing fast, the same study shows most of us still want it. But you might be surprised to find you don’t need expensive date nights to reignite your relationship.
Mattress Online has exposed what's ruining your sex life and uncovered simple ways to improve it. Our survey reveals what’s affecting sex – for better or worse – when you’re stuck in a routine.
- 1/3 say Christmas is the best time of year for sex
- 10% are more satisfied by social media likes than sex
- 20% reveal reality TV is their biggest sex turn off
- 9/10 think comedy is least likely to kill the mood
- 40% would refuse sex if their partner hadn’t done their chores
- 1/6 claim that being too bloated from takeaways ruins romance
- Cooking is the biggest turn on, according to 2/5
- 60% would schedule sex
If you think wooing your partner involves a five-star hotel and an expensive trip to the lingerie shop, think again. “Intimacy is a bigger indicator of sex than sexy underwear” says Relationships Scotland, but how can you achieve that intimacy without breaking the bank?
Read on to discover more about our findings and see what’s affecting our sex lives.
1/3 think Christmas is the best time for sex
'Tis the season for sex as our research reveals that 1/3 say Christmas is the best time of year for intimacy. Shockingly, Christmas was twice as popular as Valentine’s Day, so get ready to cuddle up this December.
Of course, we don’t need to rely on the holidays to have sex. Here’s the top things to avoid if you want to have more sex all-year round.
10% prefer social media likes to sex
Our brains react the same way to sex as they do to successful social interactions, according to Harvard University. 10% say getting distracted by social media is their biggest reason for not getting intimate, suggesting we’re more satisfied by likes than sex.
Tiredness is the top mood killer, says 2/5
Being tired is the most common for avoiding intimacy, according to 2/5. With a third of Brits in sleep debt, it’s no surprise we’re too worn-out for romance.
1/6 reveal being too bloated stops sex
Our study uncovered 1/6 agreeing that feeling too full and bloated would put a stop to sex.
Pizza and curry also prove to be serious culprits as the same amount (1/6) said they wouldn’t feel ready for sex until the next day if they’d eaten a big takeaway. If you’re planning a night of ‘Netflix and chill’, don’t order in.
40% would refuse sex if their partner hadn’t done their chores
Don’t shirk your domestic duties if you want to boost your sex life. 40% would turn down sex if their partner hadn’t done their share of household jobs.
20% say reality TV is killing their sex life
Our survey exposed reality TV and crime as the biggest passion killers, with over 20% saying they’re the most unsexy genres. If you’re hooked on Love Island or Line of Duty, start watching these shows on your own.
If all this sounds familiar, read on to see what you can do instead to reignite your relationship.
9/10 say comedy is least likely to kill the mood
Our data shows that laughter is the best way to the bedroom. 9/10 agreed comedy shows are least likely to kill the mood, which is good news for fans of Friends and Impractical Jokers.
Cooking is the biggest turn on, according to 2/5
2/5 claim the top domestic job to put them in the mood is cooking, if their partner does it for them.
If you’re pursuing a night of passion, cook your other half a light meal, making sure they don’t feel too full! Avoid cooking with beans, onions and broccoli, as the NHS says they’re the most common bloating foods.
You can give aphrodisiac oysters a miss too, as less than 1/20 try them regularly. Data suggests that natural aphrodisiacs are largely ineffective anyway.
60% would schedule sex
Our data uncovered that 60% would schedule intimacy, proving you don’t need spontaneity for a good sex life. Relationship and Body Language Expert Katia Loisel from Love Destination says:
“It may not sound romantic, but when your life is full of distractions and a ‘to do’ list as long as your arm, making time for sex can be the last thing on your mind. Scheduling intimacy forces you to focus on the two of you and to prioritise your relationship.
While you might not always be in the mood, getting physically intimate with your partner releases a surge of hormones and endorphins, including mood-boosting dopamine, serotonin and the ‘cuddle hormone’ oxytocin, that not only make you feel great, but can also have a positive impact on your relationship and well-being – making you feel more content, connected and in love.”
But it’s not just experts who agree. See our real-life story from Sarah* below, who explains how scheduled sex made her relationship better:
“We found with the busy lives we lead, we could go a while without sex. Yet when it was scheduled in, we both knew we were making time for each other and weren’t getting stuck into other boring life things.
I think it’s improved our sex life, because it helps us if we’ve had a stressful day – we can schedule it in with minimal effort. Plus, if we know in advance, it’s led to more adventurous or fun things because we’ve had time to plan.”
2/5 say it’s best to have sex right before bedtime
Our research shows that 2/5 agree it’s best to have sex between 6pm and 10pm. With most of us going to bed between 10pm and 11pm, it’s a good idea to schedule intimacy just before you go to sleep.
If you’ve already tried the advice above but your sex isn’t getting better, why not consider a sleep divorce? Your partner could be disturbing your sleep and making you too tired for sex.
Data correct as of October 2019. All statistics rounded for clarity. *Name has been changed for anonymity.