Really Well is an online platform that marries the world of wellness with an appreciation for culture, curation, and aesthetics. We’ve partnered to bring you MOOD BOARDS, a weekly series that explores elements of sexual wellness with accompanying eye candy in the form of mood boards. This week, Really Well founder Ingrid Kesa is here to talk isolation for everyone out there who is without a sexual partner either near or far.
The coronavirus pandemic has caused disruptions to daily life for all of us, to varying degrees. The routines we once took for granted — the comfort and security they brought us — have been all but eroded as we shift towards a life lived at home while navigating the challenges that come with things like financial stress and changing work situations. To add insult to injury, health officials have basically told us to put a hold on casual sex, dating, and physical intimacy of any kind. Fair enough, the virus is highly contagious and easily transmitted, but still — what’s a girl to do?
The good news is that while the world around us goes into lockdown, your libido need not. This forced time indoors and in isolation can actually be a bit of a blessing in disguise — at least where self-pleasure is concerned. Now is the perfect time to really get to know your own body and what turns you on. Besides, being single and “putting yourself out there” can be emotionally exhausting — now is a time to recoup your energy reserves and make it all about you.
Read on for five tips on how to explore self-pleasure, which has become the safest sex option in the time of COVID-19.
1. Set The Tone
Without going full Marie Kondo on masturbation, it’s important to set up your space so that it feels safe and relaxing. Declutter your environment to reduce external distractions and ensure you have lots of privacy, especially if you live in a sharehouse or you’re staying with family. Put your phone on silent, set aside some time. It can help to think about engaging the senses. Try lighting a candle or some incense, opt for soft lighting, or start by rubbing an oil or moisturiser into your skin to ease into the mood for physical sensation. Put on some Barry White if you need to. We won’t judge.
2. Wetness Is The Essence...
Enhance the body’s natural arousal with a personal lubricant to ensure frictionless play. This can help to reduce any discomfort as well as heightening the peaks of pleasure. Bijoux Indiscrets Finger Play Gel is a water-based gel that, as the name suggests, allows you to manually stimulate erogenous zones in a friction-free way. Not only does it come in a cute bottle that will fit into your bedside visual merchandising, Dame Alu Aloe Lube is a water-based lubricant made from organic aloe vera, which means it’s safe for toys.
3. Explore Your Body
Try turning your attention to areas that might normally be neglected, remembering that the goal is finding out what you like. Travel to different postcodes of the body, colour outside the lines. You get what we’re saying. The Bijoux Indiscrets Nipple Play Gel is designed to thrust this sensitive area into the spotlight. With its gentle yet cooling effect, it can help to up the ante above the belt.
4. Try A Toy
What nature provided is great, but human intervention can help. Try adding a toy into the mix for excitement and intrigue. Whether you want simple and straightforward (like the no-nonsense Tenga Delta Vibrator) or something with all the bells and whistles (looking at you, Jil Ava Rabbit Vibrator — the Bamix equivalent for the bedroom) there’s never been a better time to invest.
5. Take The Pressure Off
Go into your self-pleasure session with an open mind, not a KPI of having an orgasm. This is all about connecting with your body on your own terms (something that we could all do with having more awareness and education around!). Self-pleasure is a stress relief and key way to maintain sexual wellness, sure, but it can also be an amazing vehicle to increase your overall confidence and self-love, which will seep into all aspects of your life.
Words written and images curated by Ingrid Kesa.
Images, clockwise from top left: Photograph by Lauren Kolyn, @laurenkolyn_studio. Photograph by Jeanloup Sieff and styling by Caroline Baker from Nova magazine, 1972. Angela Lindvall photographed by Norbert Schoerner for Prada AW1998. Gillian Doyle photographed by Mary Rozzi for The September Issues. Charles Eames quote print from Etsy. From the cover of Nadja by Andre Breton, 1999. Photograph of candles by Ingrid Kesa. Kim Gordon in the bath, unknown. Photograph by Ismael Moumin, @ismaelmoumin. Selfie by Ashley Olah @ashleydarianolah. Photograph via @itslemonwater. Via @mode.damour.