Are you finding that sex is either not pleasurable or simply painful? Maybe you're worried about how much your partner is enjoying it? Whatever the case, if you work on it, you can improve your sex life.
Part One of Four:
Setting Up for SuccessEdit
1Use safer sex practices. It can be easier to relax and enjoy yourself if you feel confident that you are practicing safer sex. With this in mind, make a plan to make your sex life as safe as possible. If you can, before you have sex, get to know your partner, and talk openly about your sexual histories. Use a condom or dental dam every time you have sex, and for the complete act.
- Only latex and polyurethane condoms protect against STIs and HIV. Polyurethane condoms may break more easily than latex. Use a condom any time you have vaginal, anal, or oral sex. A dental dam is a latex barrier that you can use when performing oral sex with a female partner. It can help prevent the spread of STIs and HIV. You can also cut open a condom and use it as a barrier.
- Women should also consider getting the HPV vaccine to help prevent problems like genital warts and cervical cancer. HPV vaccines may cause fainting or allergic reactions in some people, so talk with your doctor about whether the vaccine is right for you.
2Love the body you're in. Feeling self-conscious or embarrassed of your body can make sex needlessly uncomfortable. If you struggle with body image issues that are negatively affecting your sex life, then make it a priority to rectify what you can and accept what you cannot. Accepting your body is key to a happy self and the first step to better sex life.
- Try looking at yourself in the mirror and make it a point to find a new positive about yourself each day.
- You can also make it a point to get to know your own body in a sexual way. Women who masturbate have significantly more sexual satisfaction than those who do not  Knowing what feels good for yourself will help you communicate your needs to your partner.
3Communicate openly with your partner. Communication with your partner will improve your sexual satisfaction and help with your intimacy. It can be hard to establish and maintain open communication with your partner, especially if you aren't comfortable with sex and what you want. Think about what you can say and still feel comfortable and safe.
- No matter how well you think you may know each other, your partner isn't a mind reader. If there is something you want to change about your sex life, then it's important to talk about it. If your partner is really committed to you, then he or she will be willing to listen and respect your needs.
- Communicating your sexual needs can even be a good bonding experience for you and your partner.
4Reveal what you like. You need to be open with your partner about your attitudes and feelings toward sex. You should also make a point of asking your partner what s/he wants and what s/he likes. Being shy or coy will only make your partner feel self-conscious, which can make the experience worse for both of you. Let yourself enjoy the experience and allow yourself to let your partner see that you're enjoying it too.
- Don't judge your partner for what he or she likes. It can be scary for both of you to divulge that kind of information, so listen to them without interrupting. If your partner likes something that you are not comfortable with, let them know that you are not interested in it without making him or her feel weird or bad about his or her desires.
- Avoid using euphemisms when possible. These are not clear, and can make it harder for your partner to understand you. Use language that you're comfortable with, but remember that sex is not "wrong" or "dirty," and using terminology that is clear and communicative is helpful.
5Let your partner know what isn't working. There are times when something you try in the bedroom isn't working. Instead of placing the blame on anyone, use "I" statements to express what is unsatisfying about the experience for you. If you are more honest about the things you don't like, you can fix them. This can only make the sex better.
- For example, tell your partner, "I feel as if the sex is too rushed. What can we do to fix this?" This statement communicates the problem you are having with the sex but doesn't place the blame on anyone. Instead, it shows that it is something that you can work on together.
- Frame things positively when possible, such as "I really enjoy when you do ____ and would like that to happen more often" or "Such-and-such really works better for me than so-and-so -- can we try that instead?"
6Pay attention to your partner. See his or her pleasure as your goal line. Of course, it's important for you to get what you're looking for from a sexual relationship too, but you should start by setting a good example. The better you make him or her feel, the more he or she going to want to rise to the challenge. The key to good sex is to make sure that you're processing and acknowledging your partner's reactions to the experience.
- When you see your partner wince, stop. You might be hurting him or her. When you hear your partner moan, repeat the motion you just did because it probably feels really good. Most importantly, pay attention throughout sex to make sure that your partner is mutually interested in everything you are doing.
- Stop immediately if he or she says “no.”
- Remember that just because your partner doesn't say "no" doesn't mean that he or she is comfortable with the situation. Consent is an ongoing process. After all, your goal is to get a resounding “yes!” from the both of you.
Part Two of Four:
Mastering the ActEdit
1Ditch the porn stereotypes. Porn is like all other movies: they do not reflect reality. Porn is shot and set up to look good on camera, but it usually doesn't reflect what actually feels good or what a real sexual encounter looks like.
- Try to go in with no expectations. Just let things go naturally.
2Take your time to enjoy it. You want to enjoy every minute of the entire experience. It shouldn't be a "get-in-get-out" operation. Enjoy the whole sexual experience. Pay attention to your partner's erogenous zones and spend time pleasuring them. Slow down and explore your partner's whole body. Don't just go for the clichè parts.
- You can also play games with one another to liven up the experience. Always focus on connection and keeping them guessing to make the sex interesting.
- Make a point to keep kissing. Returning for a sexy make-out every now and again can be a great way to draw out the experience.
3Focus on foreplay. Before jumping right to the main event, spend some time kissing, caressing, and pleasing one another. Foreplay can make sex last longer and feel more sensual and romantic. Women especially find that foreplay is helpful in getting them in the right mood, whereas men may be more ready to go at any moment.
- It's in your best interest to get your lady in the mood. It will increase her natural lubrication and make her enjoy sex more.
4Keep the compliments flowing. You should make sure that your partner never doubts for a moment that you think he or she is pretty much the hottest thing on the planet, maybe even the hottest thing for the next couple planets. When you see something you like, let your partner know.
- You don't always have to say it, but take time to enjoy it. Let your partner see you enjoying his or her body too.
5Use proper lubrication. Personal lubrication products can significantly improve sexual satisfaction. Using quality lubricants is very important to good sex, especially if your partner is a woman or if you are having anal sex. Sexual interactions involve a lot of friction and, most of the time, friction is a good. However, it also has its downsides, such as chafing and discomfort. You can buy lubricants at many local stores and pharmacies as well as online. You can also get them through your doctor or a sexual health clinic.
- Choose lubricant products without the ingredient glycerin, which leads to vaginal dryness. Avoid using scented products or other materials that could cause vaginal dryness, including douches, hand lotions, soaps, or bath oils. To use lubricants correctly, follow manufacturer's instructions.
- There are three types of lubrication, water-based, silicone-based, and oil-based. Water-based lubricants rinse off easily, and are easy to find in stores.  They can also be used with condoms, can prevent the condom from breaking,, and produce fewer genital symptoms than silicone-based lubricants.
- Silicone-based lubricants last longer than other lubricants and are the best choice for anal sex. Oil-based lubricants should never be used with latex condoms because they can cause the condom to break. 
6Make some noise. When you are having sex, try to make some noises of appreciation for your partner. Of course, you don't want to go over the top, but making some basic moans and gasps lets your partner know not only when something feels good and when your partner should do more of it, it also tells that you're enjoying the experience. This will heighten his or her enjoyment and also encourage your partner to put in more effort.
- A recent study reveals that partners who make noise during sex tend to have better sex. So just do what feels natural and if you feel like making noise, let it loose.
Part Three of Four:
Try New ThingsEdit
1Indulge in your fantasies. You don't need to go full blown over the top with the things you like in bed, but some basic kink can really add variety and interest to your sex life. The problem is that sex can easily become routine, especially when you've been with someone for a while. To keep it great or make it better, you want to break up the monotony. Nothing says "goodbye monotony" like silk blindfolds, fuzzy handcuffs, and a fun game of Bad Cop.
- You should also experiment with sex toys. Including sexual materials in your sex life can improve your satisfaction and most sex toys can be pleasurable for both partners.
- Other sexual materials also might help create some sparks in your love life. Do some research and see what you might be missing out on.
- Lots of people have very specific sexual fantasies that they are too embarrassed to share with their partners. If you feel comfortable enough with your partner, then share your fantasies with one another.
2Keep things unpredictable. You might know just what to do to make your partner orgasm instantly, but that doesn't mean you should. Sex should happen organically and feel spontaneous. If you and your partner have sex at the same time every day or night, then it's time to mix things up.
- Incorporate variation in the positions you use, where you have sex, who's in control, and what extras you use.
3Try a new position. Changing sex positions can improve sexual satisfaction. It can make you and your partner feel better to try new things. For example, try the cowgirl family of positions. These are positions which offer more control to women and increase their pleasure.
- Also try doggy style. Despite the less than appealing name, this position is great for pregnant women and certain types of female stimulation.
- You can also try the coital-alignment technique. This is a sexual position which has been studied and proven to provide the most stimulation for women, allowing you to both get the most from the experience. It is similar to the traditional missionary, but creates a more pleasurable position for both partners.
- Try side by side positions. If one or both of you has back or joint pain, or if there is discomfort due to penis size, side by side positions can offer more control and comfort. Both partners will be laying on their side facing the same direction for these positions. There are many variations so find what works best for you.
Part Four of Four:
Getting Outside HelpEdit
1Find some resources. You can find inspiration from erotic stories -- many's the woman who has thrilled to 50 Shades of Grey -- but it can also be a good idea to consult some "how-to" manuals on how to improve your sex life. Look for books written by sex experts. It can also be helpful to look for resources that are geared toward where you are in life; there are resources available for LGBT individuals, older individuals, etc.
2See your doctor. Some causes of sexual dysfunction have medical causes, especially for men. Erectile dysfunction, for example, is commonly caused by conditions such as heart disease, high blood pressure, or obesity, although stress can also cause it. If you're experiencing physical problems that are interfering with your sex life, talk to your doctor.
- Many conditions that cause sexual dysfunction are very treatable. Don't feel embarrassed about going to your physician; sex issues are very common and your doctor likely deals with them all the time.
3Consult an expert. Sometimes, a couple has issues with their sex life that they can't seem to solve on their own. This is perfectly natural. If you continue having sexual problems, seeing a couple therapist who specializes in sex therapy can help. A sex therapist (or couple therapist with sex therapy training) knows what kinds of questions to ask to help the two of you discover what may be causing your issues in the bedroom.
- It can be immensely embarrassing to talk to a stranger about your sex life, but sex therapists are held to the same rules of confidentiality as all mental health professionals. They're there to help you, and will not judge you or discuss your issues with anyone else.
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- As with anything else, sex takes practice in order to perfect. If you are new to sex, then don't panic if it isn't amazing from the get-go. You're still learning about your own body and about what techniques and maneuvers work and which ones don't in bed.
- Ladies, look seductive. Play. Pinch. Lick.
- Remember that birth control does not protect against sexually transmitted diseases, and is not 100% effective in preventing unplanned pregnancies.
- No sex is 100% safe, but safer sex practices such as having open conversations about your sexual history and using condoms every time greatly reduce your risk.
- The BDSM community tends to hate 50 Shades of Grey. You should take advice from non-fiction, not fiction, anyway.
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