If you're in your 20s and think sex isn't everything people claim it to be, don't you worry — research says the best is yet to come. According to a new survey, women say they experience their best orgasms after 36. "Sex in your mid-30s and particularly after 40 is, in most cases, purely for pleasure," Cheryl Sloane, owner of sexual wellness retailer, G Boutique tells Bustle. "If a woman has had a healthy and active sex life, she knows what feels good and has the confidence to speak openly about her pleasure. With some adjustments (more lube!) this can be the beginning of decades of love and connection that rival those early years."
Fertility app Natural Cycles, conducted a survey of over 2,600 women on their sex lives and found there were some pretty interesting patterns occurring among three distinct age groups: those under 23, those 23-36, and those 36 and over.
Like previous studies have found, they discovered that sex may get better with age. Women who were 36 and over reported having more orgasms and enjoyed sex much more than those in their 20s. In fact, nearly 60 percent of women over 36 said they not only had more orgasms, but had better quality orgasms. Less than 50 percent of women under 23 could say the same.
Why Does Sex Get Better With Age?
It's been said before, but one of the many reasons why sex tends to get better with age has a lot to do with confidence. Women over 36 were the most confident in their own skins, rating themselves as both "sexy" and "attractive."
"I have found that many women are more comfortable in their own skin and bodies once they reach their 40s," Tiffany Yelverton, sex educator, coach, and founder of sexual wellness company, Entice Me, tells Bustle. "I find many women get to 40 and no longer care as much what others think, which releases anxiety and creates more confidence. At this time in life, typically the children are older and the risk of them crawling into bed is less (which many moms state as an issue of why they don't have sex) so sex, masturbation, and self-care increases."
And it's also about experience. "Women in their 40s have had more experiences and know their own desires and needs and are mature enough to communicate them," she says. "Confidence is sexy and others pick up on that, which I know makes me feel more sexual."
"Women start having the best sex of their lives as soon as they realize who they are and how they fit in the world."
Clearly research shows that when it comes to sex, there's really nothing to worry about. If you think your sex life is just alright (or even less than) at the moment, you have years ahead of you to look forward to. But why do you need to wait for the future to start getting it right? "Women start having the best sex of their lives as soon as they realize who they are and how they fit in the world," Dr. Cristina Bosch and Dr. John Robinson, The Sex Docs tells Bustle. "Sex is about connecting with yourself through the co-creative act of intercourse. But this starts with knowing yourself first. If you don’t know yourself, then you can’t really express to your partner your needs, wants, desires, and fantasies."
So here are some ways to have the best orgasms at any age:
1Find The Best Birth Control For You
A 2016 study presented at the International Conference on Family Planning in Indonesia found that couples who use contraception have more sex. Since having more sex is linked to greater intimacy and happier relationships, researchers concluded that using birth control is one of the ways to have better sex.
But it's all about finding the method that works for you, Dr. Sophia Yen, Clinical Associate Professor at Stanford Medical Schoolboard and CEO and Co-Founder of Pandia Health tells Bustle. For example, if you're using condoms, make sure you find ones you enjoy. "If you use a condom with better sensation, then you're more likely to use it," she says.
2Be More Vocal About What You Want
If your partner doesn't know what you like, tell them. Or better yet, show them. "Many many couples never tell each other what they want or need sexually which is very unfortunate," Dr. Steve McGough, associate professor of clinical sexology and director of research and development at Women and Couples Wellness tells Bustle. "In my opinion, if manual stimulation or intercourse doesn't work it's a great idea to experiment with toys. If their partner is not sure about having toys in the bedroom, women can offer to use the vibration or other aspects on their partners as well. This often creates curiosity where there may have initially been resistance."
3Remember That Your Partner Thinks You're Sexy
Don't forget that your partner finds you attractive when you're naked, Dr. Steve McGough says. "Many people get so stressed about their body image or appearance that they don't really enjoy the moment," he says. "At the same time, their partners don't usually even realize this and think they're doing something wrong."
So do both you and your partner a favor and remember this: You're sexy, you're partner thinks you're sexy, so enjoy it!
4Talk To Your Friends About Sex
Most people tend to avoid the topic of sex in conversation, but it's really nothing to be embarrassed about. If you're looking for ways to make things more interesting, talking to a close friend can give you some ideas or even make you feel more comfortable with the subject. If that friend happens to be older, it might be even beneficial to you. "See if you can find some open minded and outspoken older women to get tips from," McGough says. You never know you'll end up learning.
While a survey may say otherwise, you can be having great sex right now without a doubt. "Women are having awesome sex in their 40s, 50s, 60s and beyond," Tara Struyk, Co-Founder of Kinkly tells Bustle. "The key is to stay in the game and treat sexual vitality as a normal, healthy part of life as we age. Oh, and if you're in your 20s and 30s and are grossed out by the thought of your elders getting it on, check your bias. We'll all be there someday and, personally, I'd rather be having orgasms!"
So never think sex stops after a certain age, or that you have to wait until you gain more life experience to have a great sex life. If you're confident and can communicate your desires, you're going to be having amazing sex at any age.