Have you ever thought about what time of day gets you the most horny? When do the stars align for you to have the energy, enthusiasm and endocrine response conducive to a bit of self or partnered lovin'?
Not everyone is interested in this kind of analysis of their own desires. Picking apart preferences or ascribing meanings where there might not be any can feel like over-thinking sex for some. But let us present to you an argument for at least occasionally reflecting on your sexuality:
You've probably heard this a thousand times by now but: the more you know what you like, the better equipped you will be to tell someone else how to please you, if that's what you want to do.
Knowing your body on a normal day gives you better insight into it on an off day. Just like you’re told to notice changes in your body for health reasons, it's important to be aware of what your individual, standard sexual functioning feels like. Then if, say, your sex drive is lower than usual, you can better eliminate variables to get to the bottom of it. Is it the medication you're on? Is it stress? Are you just not that attracted to the person you're sleeping with?
Time of day is just one of those factors affecting sex drive worth exploring. If you'd like to explore with us, read on.
There are some obvious reasons some people prefer to start their day with sex. Sex is basically an energising workout to get the blood pumping. Or on the flipside you might like to take things slowly and indulgently first thing in the morning. Sex releases feel-good hormones like oxytocin and dopamine, which begin the day on a high.
Not only does sex produce pleasant hormones, but research suggests some wake up with hormone levels that promote arousal. Penis-owners have higher levels of testosterone in the morning, hence the erection and possible arousal that accompanies it. Vagina-owners tend to have higher testosterone in the mornings too, although it’s much lower than for penis-owners and less related to sexual function.
But hormones are only one of many factors that affect sexual response. Even if hormones are supposedly ripe for you to have sex in the morning, you simply might not be in the mood. Lack of sleep can negatively affect sexual desire. If you slept well the night before, you might still generally feel sluggish in the mornings. And unless you’ve had a dirty dream, there’s not much time to prepare your mind for sex when you’ve just woken up. Mornings can also be stressful if you have work or other commitments, leaving some parties unsatisfied with rushed sex.
Finally, if cleanliness and sex go hand-in-hand for you, morning breath and a grimey layer of night sweat can be turn-offs.
There's something very intentional about the afternoon delight. You're not just fucking because you rolled over in bed and there your sex friend was. You're deliberately setting aside a chunk of your day for pleasure, prioritising it almost as a rebellion against the pressure to be productive.
The daylight hours might make you feel more alert when you’ve been upright, well-fed, showered, making decisions and generally going about your business for a while. Taking a break and surrendering to some languid day play might help you reconnect to your body—and possibly someone else’s—reminding you of the other important things in life.
The downside (or upside, depending on how you feel about it) is you might risk getting walked in on. Some people are also just too busy, or their schedules don’t align, for afternoon sex to be an option.
According to a 2014 study of 565 men and women, the majority preferred sex in the evening. Men also had a secondary peak in desire in the morning, and so did women who were morning people.
It could just be the simple fact that the evening is the most convenient time for sex. There’s no pressure to get up and start the day, your partner might already be in the bed next to you and you could be feeling more relaxed after going out and having some fun. You’ve had all day to build anticipation and give your important sex organ—the brain—some prep time.
Sexologist Vanessa Muradian, of Mia Muse, has really great tips on the importance of “bridging” from the stress of a day to a more restful erotic state. Desiring sex at night isn’t always going to happen without effort, we have to prepare for that pleasure.
Maybe you’re not a night person at all and are too exhausted for any kind of sex when your head hits the pillow. Some people feel totally overstimulated by the end of the day, and the last thing they want is to be touched by another person. This feeling of being “touched out” especially affects parents with young kids who have had a lot of physical contact with their children throughout the day.
There are so many internal and external elements that can dictate when we like to have sex or masturbate. It can vary from person-to-person and day-to-day.
Ask around and see what your friends like. And, if you have any sexual partners, ask them and see whether compromises have to be made so everyone is having a good time.
Image credit: @guenfiore