From emojis to taking it slow: The dos and don'ts of dirty talk

There’s a very fine line between good dirty talk and mood-killing cringe, so it’s little wonder a lot of people shy away from it altogether.

But by doing so, we might be missing a trick.

Clinical Sexologist Ness Cooper used to write naughty scripts for sex workers, so she knows a thing or two about dirty talk.

On’s podcast Smut Drop, she says: ‘The research shows that when we talk dirty to a partner, it increases how we bond and connect with each other. It helps us release certain hormones such as oxytocin and dopamine.

‘It also increases testosterone. Most people think it’s a gender-specific hormone when it comes to sex, but it’s actually beneficial for most people who enjoy orgasms because it helps you get that orgasm.’

For those interested in giving some X-rated chat a try, Ness has shared her top tips on how to do it properly.

If at first, you don’t succeed, try and try again

Leave your embarrassment at the door as best you can – if something doesn’t quite work, the world will not end.

‘I may feel embarrassing to you,’ says Ness.

‘Even if something doesn’t go 100%, just laugh it off and keep trying again and again.’

Remember the point is, as Ness puts it, to ‘just have fun’, and remember that everyone makes mistakes.

Don’t be generic

Don’t use cookie-cutter phrases, convey what you’re actually feeling in the moment.

‘There are some generic things, like “I’m ready for you” and stuff like that,’ Ness says, ‘but I think it’s more about getting your motivation across to the individual.

‘What do you want? What do you feel? The emotions – that’s what makes dirty talk a winner.’

Take it slow

Like a lot of other things in the bedroom, there’s no need to rush – in fact, it would be way better if you didn’t.

‘You don’t focus on the finale at the beginning,’ Ness points out. ‘You work in a bit of foreplay because that’s what it’s all about.

‘And if the goal is to make you and/or your partner come, afterwards don’t just jump straight into everyday conversation. Do some aftercare – even dirty talk needs that.’

Don’t shy away from emojis

If you’re dirty talking from afar (read: sexting) then Ness says emojis are still worth including.

She says: ‘Emojis can be sexy. If you decide to go text-based, emojis can work because there’s a social connection that helps you visualise and helps put you in the other person’s shoes.

‘But it can be tricky because some of it will be culturally or generationally specific.

‘There is actually proof about emojis helping you not connect on phone sex, but just emotionally with other people.’

Strike a balance between ‘normal’ and ‘sexy’ chat

If you’re venturing into the land of sexting with someone for the first time, again, take it slow and steady.

Ness advises: ‘Give yourself a few days to slowly ease into it. Make sure that you remember to also have everyday conversations in between.

‘Have a nice balance where you still talk to each other as individuals.

‘Because that’s where you’re going to learn what actually helps make that person tick.

‘For instance, are they going to be relaxed right now, or have they had a stressful day at work? If they had a really bad day at work, dirty talk might not be a good thing to start with that in that particular conversation.’

And remember, consent is always sexy.

‘Even just ask “would you be up for dirty talk?”‘ says Ness, ‘More people need to just be blunt sometimes.’

And if they say no, obviously don’t keep pressing the issue – that is the polar opposite of sexy.

Use memories

If you’re a bit stuck for inspiration, Ness recommends using memories of things you did before with the person you want to talk dirty to.

Ness says: ‘Go into a bit of detail. How did it make you feel? Did it make you feel hot, did it make you blush? Did it make you think of other things?

‘Go on from there and build on it a bit.’

Don’t tell anyone to do anything dangerous

This might sound like a no-brainer, but you’d be surprised.

Ness says: ‘I’ve heard a lot of dirty talk where, particularly into fem-dom relationships, people have been instructed to do dangerous things.

‘We don’t really want to up the number of people in A&E.’

Give your partner time to process your fantasies

Sometimes things click straight away, but there are also plenty of times when our partners may need time to assess things like their own boundaries.

‘If you don’t understand why someone doesn’t understand your fantasies when you’re discussing them in dirty talk,’ says Ness, ‘give them time to process it.

‘Don’t rush them. You’ve probably thought about it for a long time, but they may have only just been introduced to it. It can really turn people off.’

Don’t stress it if you lose your dirty talk mojo in a relationship…

Ness says this type of thing is actually very normal for couples as their relationship progresses through the years.

‘In relationships, it can seem like we have amazing dirty talk straight away, because we often have a more connected symbiosis,’ she says. ‘That often starts fading from six months to two years – depending on the relationship.

‘Some people may find that they’re great at talking dirty to their partner at the early stages, and then they get a bit lost years down the line, because they’re still adapting and learning how to be themselves in the relationship.

‘There’s a lot of nervousness around that, and their partner is probably in the same boat.’

If you’re struggling, Ness recommends sexy board games as a good jumping-off point.

… Because familiarity can take it to the next level

All that isn’t to say that long-term love spells the end of dirty talk in your relationship forever.

Ness says: ‘It’s important that we have our own individual selves, rather than having that honeymoon period continuously. You can’t live co-dependently upon each other for the rest of your lives.

‘When you start to learn who you are and who your partner is as a unique individual a bit more, you can then develop hotter dirty talk that’s more unique.’

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