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Brittney Palmers Talents Extend Way Beyond the UFC Octagon

Brittney Palmer has proven to be way more than just a pretty face.

The Las Vegas native has always enjoyed a life under the lights, naturally gravitating towards the world of arts and entertainment. While she’s made a name for herself as an Octagon Girl for the UFC, distracting from the bloodshed with her undeniable beauty, Palmer has also managed to pursue her dreams of professional painting. Her latest venture? “Electric Flow” at the Park MGM Hotel during UFC International Fight Week, putting her talents on display during her very first solo exhibition in Las Vegas — and she’s only just begun.

RELATED: Best Dating Apps for Relationships

AskMen spoke with the accomplished model/artist, covering her career, first date tips and the person she idolizes the most.

AskMen: Between your contemporary art, modeling and being a UFC ring girl, you seem to dabble in a lot. If there was one thing you could do, no experience required, what would you pick?

Brittney Palmer: I would love to produce shows whether it be performance shows or art events.

What led you to have such a strong social media presence? How do you think it's helped/hindered you at times in your life?

UFC has definitely helped with my social media presence. I’ve been with each platform pretty much since the beginning. I think that being able to show people my art and things I am passionate about, outside of UFC, has helped exponentially.

The downside to social media is getting caught up in what everyone else is doing and not focusing on what I need to do. I am working on it and I’m getting better every day!

Emily Wilson Photography

Let’s talk about meeting new people. What's the key to getting past nerves on a first date?

I think the key to mastering a first date is just being confident. Have fun and be yourself.

And what about if a guy wanted to get your attention … what should he do?

Be kind, funny and authentic!

At what point do you feel your sexiest? Is there something specific you love to do?

I feel the sexiest when I’m doing what I truly love: painting. When I’m in my studio, covered in paint and a good song comes on.

What's something you wish all men would start doing when out with a woman?

Get off social media! I think we are starting to get so comfortable with the idea of having it that we forget to pay attention to the world around us.

Is there a current trend people seem to be embracing at the moment that you’re in love with? On the flip side, how about one that you really hate?

I love the recent artist collaborations that are happening. Seeing art I love, printed on clothing that is easily available, is such a great thing. I’m not really into the fanny pack over the shoulder look.

Name one person you draw inspiration from. How have they come to influence your life?

I truly idolize Frida Kahlo. She never apologized for being who she was and she expressed herself in the most beautiful ways. As a female artist, I have so much respect for her.

With your recent installation in Vegas, where do you hope to take your art next?

I just hope to keep growing and expanding my art. I would like to continue to do shows and donate work to some truly special causes with UNICEF and amfAR.

Emily Wilson Photography

How have you gone on to prove to audiences that you are way more than just a beautiful woman with a large social media following?

I’ve continued to stay authentic to who I am. I have been repping my art and being an artist for 10 years, and have never steered away. I’ve always known that this is what I wanted to do, and now I think people are starting to take notice.

So what’s next for you?

I am currently getting ready to create a painting for the UNICEF gala in Sardinia. After that, I will be painting a mural at the Hurley headquarters.

This year is extremely busy, but I am so grateful for the next steps, including my next solo exhibition in October at the ParkMGM in Las Vegas.

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People With These Jobs Are the Most Attractive, Says Study

When it comes to dating, you're almost certain to be judged on more than just your looks. Although your appearance plays an important role in a potential love connection, you might be surprised how much your profession matters as well.

RELATED: Highest Paying Careers in the U.S.

At least that's the takeaway according to a recent study conducted by the matchmakers at EliteSingles, an exclusive dating site catering to educated and dedicated singles. More than 100,000 users who received at least one message were surveyed, and the results may certainly surprise you.

So what jobs, exactly, are the most attractive to the opposite sex? Perhaps a soldier, a brawny-yet-sensitive Rambo type who protects his flag and his family? How about a rock star or a famous musician? Or even a pro athlete, chiseled physique and team uniform drawing all eyes toward him?

As it turns out, women really dig men who have a way with words and rhetoric, preferring lawyers by a substantial margin. Whether this attraction comes down to the fact that being beaten in an argument is a big turn-on or whether lawyers generally place in the upper end of earning potential remains unclear.

Nonetheless, male lawyers received a whopping 135 percent more messages than the average man on this particular dating platform – more than twice as many – which is a big plus for guys with a law gig.

Coming in at a respectable but distant second place are doctors – so yes, being a famous doctor or lawyer, just like your mother always said, is definitely a dating advantage. Male physicians were inundated with a flood of messages, generally getting 82 percent more interest than the average man on the site. Whether the role is kissing a booboo better or providing some nurturing bedside manner, it looks like women definitely show a strong preference for them in terms of potential partnership.

Being a self-made businessman (obvious Donald Trump quips aside) is also highly attractive to high-powered women. Those dating profiles belonging to guys who labeled themselves as entrepreneurs received a substantial increase in attention from the opposite sex, seeing an uptick of 46 percent the number of messages. However, men who described their profession as business owner (essentially the same thing) received only a modest increase of 19 percent over the average.

The lesson, guys? If you're a business owner, it's better to describe yourself as a cutting-edge “entrepreneur” rather than going with the more basic, down-to-earth terminology. Just makes you sound cooler, and apparently look more attractive, to women.

RELATED: Best Dating Sites for Professionals

Keep in mind, however, that because men so often make the first move, the survey numbers could be a bit skewed toward female respondents. In fact, 75,000 women and 25,000 men were included in the pool of overall candidates and there was only one major difference between the preferences shown by either gender.

While lawyers, doctors, and entrepreneurs appeared prominently on both lists, male engineers only received a statistically insignificant boost over the average man, generating only 1 percent more interest. However, female engineers were extremely attractive to their male counterparts; women who listed engineer as their profession on EliteSingles saw an incredible 66 percent increase in messages from men.

The bottom line? If you're a gearhead who happens to be a guy, it may be time to take up a second career stream to list front-and-center in your online dating profile. Or maybe consider law school?

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People Would Give Up Sex for Better WiFi, According to Survey

Poor WiFi connections can lead to some major headaches. Troubleshooting routers, counting those damned blinking lights, color coding them, or digging into the firmware to find out what the heck is wrong is one that many men and women would be more than happy to leave in the dust. In fact, many would choose better WiFi over sex, according to a new survey.

The recent Google survey included questions concerning these common complaints and gripes. What wasn't as apparent, however, was just how seriously the average consumer takes their home or office WiFi connection.

Some of the survey results are even a bit shocking. Almost one-third – or 32 percent – of those asked whether or not they would give up sex for a month in order to remain free of WiFi bugs said yes. And, workers from all walks of life admitted that they would sacrifice two vacation days on the altar of the internet gods if it meant a solid network connection sans frustration.

RELATED: Study Finds We’re More Addicted To WiFi Than Sex, Chocolate Or Alcohol

Love "Game of Thrones," "Stranger Things" or re-runs of  "Star Trek: The Next Generation"? Regardless of what the show in question was, over one-fifth of Google's survey respondents said they’d give up their favorite series in order to finally be free of finicky WiFi.

Point made – we're addicted to the internet, and we need it now more than ever. It's become something of a utility, or an expected service, rather than a luxury in 2019. 

Therefore, new and novel solutions are called for. Fortunately, Google WiFi is working on harnessing the power of the Alphabet corporation's top-tier research and design. Google’s next-generation mesh router claims to provide total and seamless coverage throughout the entire home or office. No longer relying on yesterday's solution of a base router and a string of (often) third-party range extenders, we’re told the Google WiFi mesh router creates maximum coverage without any complications.

Better yet, a major price drop is on the immediate horizon. Exclusively from July 15th to July 16th, the Google WiFi base model will go on sale for $89 rather than the usual $99 ask. If you need more than one point of coverage – say, for larger homes or office floor plans – the 3-pack will be reduced from a sticker price of $299 to $259.

Apparently, the Google WiFi system is a solution for nearly all wireless internet needs. It operates at both 2.4 Ghz and 5 Ghz in true dual-band fashion, and seems to be simple, straightforward, and easy to set up. Google has specifically designed the product for users of all levels of computer expertise – from total noob to professional programmers and systems administrators – and installation is quick and painless.

The best part? No more dead zones. Finally, you can scroll through Facebook, Twitter, Reddit, and Instagram from anywhere you'd like, without seeing the dreaded diminishing of signal strength. Total coverage means total joy for those who prefer cat memes and boomerang videos to counting down the seconds before the page finally refreshes. 

And, you don’t even have to give up sex to get it.

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Master The Art Of Erotic Spanking

That nice, hard (but not too hard) smack across your girlfriend’s backside might have felt a little risqué the first time you did it, but now it’s such a part of your sexual routine that you can’t imagine not doing it when she’s bent over in doggy style. Right? You’re not quite as kinky of a couple as you think you are, considering 60% of women say they enjoy being spanked. But if your desire to leave a handprint and grab her backside keeps growing, you may be interested in a whole new level: erotic spanking.

What is that? Sex expert Sienna Sinclaire explains: “Erotic spanking is all about spanking someone for sexual pleasure or both parties. It's always a good idea if you're being spanked to enjoy it, but the person spanking can get highly aroused too. Sometimes the person being spanked can lead to orgasm and even squirting.”

Even if you’re not open to being spanked yourself, if your girlfriend is into a little more intense attention on her backend, here’s how to take those loving smacks into a new sexy world:

1) Where Does Spanking Come From?

Before you even get started with a little booty-play, take a moment to realize just how far back spanking actually goes. It might surprise you. Sex expert and commentator, Coleen Singer, says that while the earliest mentions go as far back as recorded human history, erotic spanking really became a thing during the Renaissance where it was practices in French courts. She adds that it grew to popularity in Victorian England and was referred to internationally as ‘The English Vice.’

It really became something that was more widely accepted centuries later. “Erotic spanking gained international appeal in the 1940s via John Willie’s Bizarre magazine which published illustrated fetish stories and articles, many of which had a spanking theme,” Singer explains. “By the 1970s, spanking groups sprang up around the United States, many of which are still active today (such as Shadow Lane, Crimson Moon and Paddles Club NYC) with the most famous retreats organized by spanking, BDSM and fetish film director Carter Stevens, which took place several times a year at a resort in the Poconos.”

2) Why Is Spanking Such A Turn On?

As children, the hickory stick was the worst punishment of them all and the very threat of ‘throwing you over my knee’ was enough to send us running. But as adults, why does spanking seem, well, hot? Singer explains it’s the mix of pleasure and pain — and that it’s mental. “The same neurotransmitter that helps control the brain's reward and pleasure centers, dopamine, is also active in the body’s chemical reactions that make us feel pain,” Singer says. “Erotic spanking — a perfect combination of the two — can be an arousing addition to foreplay and sex.”

Dawn Michael, who is a certified sexuality counselor and marriage and family therapist with a Ph.D. in human sexuality, also adds that being submissive or dominant with your partner can be a sexy role play that spanking easily falls under. “Spanking can be a turn on for both a man and a woman who enjoy being submissive to their partner, working it into a role of submission to their dom for a man or their master for a woman,” she explains. “When spanked the blood rises to the top of the butt giving it a tingling sensation and then a light feather can create chills after or a soft blow or kissing the area. Also some people like the anticipation of when the spanking is going to happen, it again speed up the adrenalin as well as dopamine levels.”

3) What Are The Different Levels Of Spanking?

You might have a sexual fantasy of whips, chains, leather and a dark room where your girl's dressed up in all black, and maybe even (if you’re really kinky!) — tied up, waiting for you to spank her. Hey, it’s normal and being dominant (as we described above) can be a big turn on for a lot of dudes. But before you work all the way up to intense erotic spanking, it’s important to understand what the different levels are. And where you should get started.

“In the spanking community, the differentiation is often referred to as a ‘Good Girl Spanking’ versus a ‘Bad Girl Spanking,” Singer explains. More than likely, you and your partner will get started with ‘Good Girl Spanking’ and maybe, if she’s into it and you are too, work your way up to the more intense, Bad Girl version.

“Good Girl spankings are playful, erotic and generally light impact as part of foreplay or during sex in positions that allow it,” Singer explains. You’ve maybe even had Good Girl spankings with your girlfriend already — especially if you have a tendency to smack her ass while having doggy-style sex. A big difference between the good and bad styles is actually sex: “Bad Girl spankings are much harder, and generally are stand-alone activities that do not involve sex,” Singer explains. “These are often incorporated into role playing where one partner has done something egregious and must be brought to contrition prior to being forgiven.”

If your girlfriend is a good girl during her bad girl spanking? Well, then Singer says, you might give her a reward, like having sex.

4) Ready To Get Started? Talk To Your Partner

If you want to try a little more intense spanking in the bedroom, it’s key to really talk to your partner before surprising her with a (not-so-loving) smack. Singer says that after having an open conversation where you both consent to this new dimension in your sex life, come up with safe words you can both come back to if something gets too intense. “Taking control or giving up control are both roles that require a mutual understanding in advance of what the goals and limits are,” Singer says. “I highly encourage couples to adopt the time-honored ‘traffic light’ system: If the bottom says ‘green,’ that communicates ‘go harder.’ If the bottom says ‘yellow,’ that means all is still good, but not to go much harder. If the bottom says ‘red,’ that means stop immediately to recover a little and deciding whether or not to resume.”

5) Spend Some Time With Google

Before you get yourself and your partner into the bedroom, Singer says it can be really sexy — and um, educational — to figure out just how this spanking bit works by searching together online. One easy way to answer a lot of your questions is to read some active discussion online. “The oldest, largest and most in-depth one is Fetlife.com, which also has a vast directory of local club, group, workshop and munch listings,” Singer says. These welcoming spaces will help prepare you for erotic spanking.

Another fun idea? Make some popcorn, get naked together and watch some spanking videos. “BDSM movies will help you get some ideas of what activities appeal to both of you. If you are new to Erotic Power Exchange, you may want to start with lighter movies as many of the BDSM sites out there are simply rough sex sites that have little to do with true bdsm or erotic power exchange,” Singer says. Her choice for a place to start? Singer has directed many films at Spankingepics.com. And for another option, Wasteland.com has safe, sane and consensual BDSM and features original authentic movies with actual kinky lifestyle couples, instead of porn stars.

6) Consider A Workshop

You might not like being dragged to yoga class with your girl (apart from those leggings, of course) — but this type of education might be more up your alley. Singer says these are not only fun for date night (and will most definitely lead to a little play once you get home) — but they can help guide your exploration into other kinky ideas for your sex life, too. Another option? What Singer calls a Munch.

“Munches are informal social gatherings, usually at a restaurant, pub, or other public place, for people who are interested in BDSM or other similar lifestyles. They are hosted by one or two experienced members of the community,” she explains. “Once they find a place that will allow ‘adult conversation' and monthly bookings, they usually post the location, date and time on a local list. Although most munches don’t involve any demonstrations or actual training, they are a great place to meet and greet other folks on the kinky side of sex.”

7) Start With A Warm-Up

You've learned that good foreplay will lead to hotter and more enjoyable sex for both of you, and the same is true for erotic spanking. Before you start using all of your might to pop her booty, you want to make sure that she’s comfortable, relaxed and ready for the experience. “Start off by just rubbing the butt either bare or clothed. This helps to get the circulation going,” Sinclaire says. “Rubbing, caressing, or massaging the butt gives your lover a feel-good sensation and leaves them wanting more. It’s all about mixing pleasure with pain: pushing their limits and making them want more.” While you’re doing this, you can also talk lovingly to her — or maybe even some dirty talk if you’re both into that — which will make her ease into the moment even deeper. The key here is to take your time and not to rush it — you may even want to go down on her, finger her or have gentle, passionate sex to make sure you’re both connected.

8) Introduce the Pleasure/Pain Combo

Once you’ve massaged her, bare-bottom or clothed, Sinclaire says it’s time to add in some surprising smacks here-and-there to prep for the spanking session. “Start off with light slaps then work up to what they are comfortable with. Rotate between cheeks but always end with rubbing her bottom,” she says. “Once they are more used to it and can take a bit more pain then rub and slap their bottom more than once but ending with a rub.” This step is important because it makes this erotic experience more personal and intimate with your partner. “Once you slap their butt after the rub, it immediately goes from pleasure to pleasurable pain with a slight feel good sting. Then going back to the rubbing after the slap, helps to take the sting away replacing it with pleasure again but leaving them wanting to feel that pleasurable sting again,” Sinclaire says. In other words — this is where she’s going to get really turned on and ready to have more fun with you.

9) Mix Sex With Spanking - The Right Way

When you’re first starting out with erotic spanking, it might be most comfortable — and enjoyable — to mix intercourse with the spanking. Just make sure that while you’re having sex and you’re popping her here-and-there, that you maintain the connection. How? By never, ever keeping your hands to yourself. “If your lover wants you to spank them while they are fucking you missionary style, you can easily reach your hands around onto their butt and spank them with the same spank-and-rub pattern,” Sinclaire says. “This is very erotic for both.The sensations from being inside someone or having someone inside of you along with the erotic rubbing and slapping of the bottom is enough to send both partners over the edge.”

10) Some Key Tips To Remember

Because erotic spanking can be somewhat painful (in a good way) — Sinclaire says making a few house rules in the bedroom is never a bad idea. These include: having a safe word that’s generic and can’t be misinterpreted for anything else (think: apple). “The person on the receiving end can say this to make all play stop immediately — no questions asked. Respect your partner’s limits,” Sinclaire says. Another important thing to remember is where you’re spanking: Sinclaire notes that if you hit your partner’s lower back instead of their bottom, you actually run the risk of damaging their kidneys.

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Above all things, make sure you’re both happy, comfortable and in-tune to each other’s needs and wants, so you both have the best time possible.

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Most Couples Now Meet Online, Says Study

In the so-called good old days, rather than wading through a pool of potential partners via Tinder, Grindr, Plenty of Fish, Bumble, OK Cupid, or any number of other matchmaking services, your friends and family members would set you up on a blind date. Not anymore.

According to a new study from Stanford University more couples meet online nowadays than through friends and family members.

RELATED: Best Free Dating Sites

The study’s authors indicate that there's no longer a necessary middleman when it comes to modern dating unless you count apps. Letting a computer play matchmaker for us instead of Uncle Jim or Aunt Marilyn may sound appealing at first, despite thousands of years of human tradition standing opposed. However, it does pose unique pitfalls.

As it turns out, 70 percent of heterosexual men and women are now meeting each other online. That number stands in pretty stark contrast to the number of people who found love via the internet in the early 2000s, which as Derek Thompson of The Atlantic suggests in an interview with WBUR, was closer to 20 percent.

“So, 20 years ago, practically nobody met online,” Thompson said. “In the early 2000s it was about one in five... that was about equivalent to the number who met in bars. But it wasn't nearly as many people [as] who met through friends or family. Then, in the last decade, it's just taken off. The internet is now the most common place to meet a new partner in America. We are now twice as likely to meet our partners online as we are through a friend. And what's fascinating to me is that this is one of the oldest behaviors – one of the oldest marketplaces – in human history.”

What's exciting about this new data is that it also suggests that there are absolutely more opportunities in the dating market for men and women using the internet. Aunts, uncles, and family friends may have their own selection biases which prevent you from being hooked up with someone they deem – in their own opinion – too “different.” As the survey results suggest, for example, interracial dating has skyrocketed in recent years, partially because the innate soft (or hard) bias coming from your inner circle has been replaced.

That's not to suggest that one's family, friends, and loved ones are necessarily prejudiced in any serious way – just that humans, by nature, use a different set of tools when selecting from a table of options than a computer program or an app might. Which, for many people, means a better chance of getting lucky and finding their true soul mate.

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Sex Tips for Your Marriage

When it comes to marriage, the common dream is that you die peacefully in each other’s arms via spontaneous romantic heart failure at the ripe, old age of 100, having led a life together that was full, and warm and loving. 

In reality, things are usually much different, and one of the biggest things that guys seem to struggle with when it comes to marriage — if pop culture and Google searches are to be believed — is married sex. 

RELATED: The Top 10 Reasons to Get Married, Revealed

As the story goes, once you’re good and married, the sexual passion that once inflamed your relationship’s early days begins to dwindle (if it hasn’t already). Add things like bills, kids and career woes to the mix, and you have a decidedly non-sexy scenario lined up. 

This person probably sees you at your best and worst, day in and day out. You can’t pull tricks like you used to, tidying up for their arrival, and you can’t really pretend you’re someone you’re not after all these years. 

The beauty of love is that you know each other, but that’s still a daunting proposition when so much of sexual attraction and arousal seems to hinge on how sexy people are when we don’t fully know them, when they’re a blank slate we can project our fantasies onto. 

So how do you make married sex … well, sexy? How do you make it fun, spontaneous, naughty and exciting all in one? The truth is, there’s no single answer. Every couple is different, and different things will work for different couples. 

To help narrow it down, here are 10 generalized tips for amping up the sex in your marriage — both in terms of quality and in terms of quantity — to keep your life as a husband a happy one. 

1. Be a Better Husband Around the Home

What’d you expect, a suggestion to buy a sex toy? The real hack to having more sex is being someone your spouse wants to have sex with. That starts with showing them you care about the marriage by taking on your fair share of responsibilities. 

“When you help out around the house, especially without being asked — say, you can see the trash is full, or dishes in the sink — your wife understands you care about her and your home,” says Tina B. Tessina, Ph.D., psychotherapist and author of “How to Be Happy Partners: Working It Out Together.”  

“Letting her know you see what she does, and thanking her for doing the laundry or cooking a good meal, as well as doing it yourself, makes her feel connected to you; you’re partners. That brings her close to you.”

There’s nothing less sexy for many people than watching the person they married turn into someone who expects them to do everything around the home. Even if you’re the primary (or sole) breadwinner, putting in a concerted effort to pull your weight on the homefront can make a huge difference in how sexy you seem. 

After all, women find lots of non-sexual things sexy, and a guy who takes care of basic chores and responsibilities ranks high on the list.

2. Lower Your Spouse’s Stress Levels

One of the biggest drains on a couple’s sex life can be stress. Not only is stress a bad sign about how the rest of your life is going, simply being stressed can drastically lower someone’s sex drive. 

That’s because stress impacts your hormones — and can seriously inhibit the hormones that help regulate arousal. Meaning, any potential for getting turned on is already nipped in the bud when you’re super stressed out. 

Making stress reduction a priority in the marriage can not only help those feelings of arousal flow more freely, but your spouse will be more likely to appreciate your focus on helping them get unblocked. 

“A married guy helping to reduce his wife's (or spouse's) stress levels can have a big positive impact on their sex life, and enjoy secondary gains by deepening the established marital trust,” says Dr. Fran Walfish, a Beverly Hills-based couples, relationship and family psychologist and author of “The Self-Aware Parent.” 

“When your spouse feels safe, cared for, and  trusts you she opens her body and soul to you in deeper ways, including sexually. She wants to be closer and more intimate with you.” 

3. Talk About Sex Together

If you’re really unsatisfied with your sex life, at some point, you need to have a conversation about it. 

“As strange as it may feel and as difficult as it can be, the most important part of improving your sex life is to talk to your partner,” says Kayla Lords, sexpert for JackAndJillAdult.com. “That means sharing what’s good and what’s not working. It also means listening to your partner’s concerns, needs and desires. You both have to give up the belief that the other ‘should just know’ [...] what you want and need. They don’t know until you tell them — and sometimes you have to tell them multiple times and in multiple ways before they understand.”

You might cringe at the thought if you feel married sex should be organic and spontaneous, but if it’s already difficult, t’s not going to magically get easier. You solve this like you solve any other marital problem — by putting the work in … together. 

“You and your spouse may have to navigate whatever shame or stigma you’ve been taught about sex,” notes Lords. “For some people even talking about sex is shameful and that makes it even more difficult ... [but doing so] “allows you both to put away assumptions and deal with what’s actually going on.” 

4. Consider Talking About Sex With a Professional

The next step? Bring in a third party, whether that’s a therapist or counselor. 

“In almost every realm of your life [...], you likely turn to experts for guidance and support,” says Jess O’Reilly, host of the “@SexWithDrJess” podcast. “Sex and relationships, however, remains the exception. A sex therapist or marriage counsellor can offer a range of support and tools to improve relationship satisfaction and fulfillment. A professional may be able to help you to more clearly identify, understand and communicate your own needs, desires and boundaries.” 

RELATED: Here’s What You Need to Know About Couples Therapy

So if you’ve tried talking one-on-one and it hasn’t gotten you anywhere, it’s time to ask for help from someone who genuinely knows what they’re doing. Among many other things, they can also help you work through any shame or insecurity you have around sex.

But whatever you do, don’t let your spouse’s reluctance end the discussion.

“If your partner won’t go to therapy with you, go on your own,” adds O’Reilly. “Don’t use their unwillingness to attend as an excuse to avoid personal growth and accountability for yourself.”

5. Intentionally Schedule Quality Time in the Bedroom

Despite feeling that sex should be organic and spontaneous, sometimes, busy schedules take over. The reality is that sometimes, you just have to buckle down and put time aside in your calendar for sex. 

“We schedule everything in our lives, and just because something is scheduled doesn’t mean that parts of it can’t be spontaneous,” says O’Reilly. “Just as food doesn’t magically appear in your mouth (you have to plan to cook, order in or go out to eat), but you can still switch from Thai to Chinese at the last minute, so too can you balance planning and spontaneity in your sex life.”

That doesn’t mean you set an agenda with minute-by-minute plans for what you’re doing. Instead, it just means you recognize that without some concerted planning effort, it can be easy for sex to slip by the wayside when other, seemingly more pressing demands are piling up.

“You might take turns scheduling sex or plan to have sex on a specific day, but leave the specific window of time more flexible,” points out O’Reilly.

6. Make Your Spouse Feel Desired

One thing that might be holding your sex life back is if your spouse just isn’t feeling sexy anymore. Over the years, people’s bodies change, and feeling like you no longer meet the standards of beauty you used to can be a real blow to a person’s sexual self esteem. 

“Don’t get unrealistically focused on appearances,” cautions Tessina. “Focus on how you feel about your partner. [...] You can happily have sex with each other into your dotage if you learn to accept the changes that come with age. You may no longer be beautiful people, but you can have a lot more love, sex and fun [...] if you are comfortable with your inevitable changes.”

One way you can make your spouse feel sexy and special? Bring a little bit of romance back into your relationship.

“When you’re married and living together, it is too easy to let romance slide,” says Tessina. “For most of us, ‘romance’ is important to some degree in encouraging a sexual mood. The relaxed anticipation produced by the right music, soft lights and sweet words makes an ideal atmosphere for intimacy, which leads to verbal and physical affection. As well, simply making time to remind your partner that you find them attractive, arousing or sexy can go a long way towards helping them feel that way themselves.” 

7. Make Yourself Feel Desirable

Of course, it’s possible what’s holding your sex life back is your own feelings of not being sexy. 

“If you feel body shame and worry that your partner judges you during sex, it will cause performance anxiety and distract you from the moment,” says sex educator Kenneth Play “If you have body image issues, you'll be worried about positioning yourself in ways that are more attractive, or sucking in your belly or the light being too bright — which will all detract from your ability to actually focus on the sex.” 

Dealing with enough experiences like that would make anyone associate sex with frustration, embarrassment or awkwardness — and then start finding excuses to avoid it. 

If that’s the case, it might be time to start working on your own self-image. That might mean working out and getting back in shape, coming to terms with how you look and loving it regardless or a combination thereof. But being able to feel genuinely good about yourself can definitely have a big impact on your sex life.

“If you're more confident in yourself and have good self-esteem about your body image, you'll be able to focus on having sex with your [spouse], your mutual pleasure and connecting,” adds Play. “Also, confidence is just sexy.”

8. Engage in Lots of Foreplay

Lots of people think of sex as being primarily about penetration, but that’s an incomplete picture of what sex is (and can be). One of the best things you can do for your sex life, especially if your spouse is a woman, is to amp up the role that foreplay plays in the bedroom. 

“When you have a long-term relationship, responsive desire is the most reliable form of desire,” notes Play. “It's backwards to think that in long-term relationships if you look at your partner and don't get aroused, you must not want sex. But especially for heterosexual women, responsive desire, which is arousal via responding to stimuli, is much more reliable and how things often work.”

In short, it’s easier to get your partner interested if you start slow rather than expect them to already be ready for penetration.

“Foreplay helps kickstart responsive desire,” adds Play. “It's the equivalent of smelling fresh-baked cookies and then salivating for them. Foreplay wakes up a dormant desire in your partner. A good sex life in a marriage needs good foreplay and non-penetrative sex skills because they will ignite desire and deepen arousal,” suggesting a sensual massage to kick things off. 

9. Try Kinky New Things

While trying fresh things (like kink or BDSM play) can mean unlocking a world of sexual potential, the important thing is to build on what you already like.

“If you enjoy a little spanking during rough sex, then you might enjoy spankings in other ways,” says Lords. “As part of role play, with a toy like a paddle, or a spanking for no reason other than you both like it.”

Whatever you do, make it a journey where you explore together — don’t spring it on them.

“Find a time when you’re both calm, relatively relaxed and fully clothed,” she adds. “Ask to set a time to talk about it. [...] You don’t know how your partner will react to your kinky desire, but the answer will nearly always be ‘no’ if you ask at the wrong time.”

Similarly, it’s best not to go all in on a new fetish immediately.

“You shouldn’t jump into the deep end the first time,” cautions Lords. “Instead of trying anal sex when neither of you have ever had anything in your butt, start with a finger or a small butt plug. Whatever kinky thing you want to do, start slow and build your way up to the fantasy in your head.”

10. Change Your Expectations

At the end of the day, perhaps the biggest impact you can have on your sex life is to work on accepting it as it is, and resetting what you’re expecting out of it instead of struggling to change it to meet your expectations.

It’s normal for a couple’s sexual habits to change over the course of a marriage. Unfortunately, expecting things to stay the same over the course of years and decades just isn’t realistic. 

Sure, if you’re in a slump, there are lots of things you can do to make things more exciting or more romantic, but you’ll never be able to perfectly recreate the sex you had when you just met — and that’s normal! 

Recognizing what your marriage does bring to the table, and not frustrated by what it doesn’t,  means you’ll be able to appreciate what you have a lot more instead of trying to make it match up with an unrealistic standard. 

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The Rock Likes the Idea of a Black Superman

With news over the years of increasing diversity in pop culture and entertainment, as well as the massive success of Marvel's Black Panther project, it seems a no-brainer to extend it to other comics.

RELATED: Dwayne 'The Rock' Johnson Buys His Dad a New House

Former WWE champion and acclaimed action hero Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson is making his own claim to a certain comics icon – Superman. Speaking on the topic of increased racial and gender diversity in the business, the wrestler-turned-actor made a few insightful remarks (and offered up one big tease) in an interview with Variety.

The Rock explains why a black superman isn't actually that far off in the future #HobbsAndShaw pic.twitter.com/ivjk8ErLla

— Variety (@Variety) July 14, 2019

“I think they're doing great. I think, obviously Marvel has done a tremendous job in building out," he said. "And also, you know, for me, DC, we're doing Black Adam with Warner Bros. and DC. We're very excited about that. So, I think, you know, as everything builds and grows, and you take the temperament of society and what's happening, and I think here in Hollywood ... especially with franchises and characters and publicly traded companies who are sensitive to that sort of thing. So yeah, I think they're doing a great job. Maybe one day we will see a Black Superman ... You're looking at him.”

It's entirely possible that Johnson was also making a sly reference to the character played by Idris Elba in the upcoming popcorn flick Hobbs & Shaw, a character coincidentally nicknamed “Black Superman.” The Fast & Furious spinoff is set to hit theaters very shortly, on August 2, which explains the full press tour that Johnson is currently engaged in. Appearing alongside fellow action A-lister Jason Statham (The Expendables, The Transporter), Johnson's character provides a brute physicality as well as a common thread of comedy relief.

The concept of gender-bending or race-swapping popular comic book characters is not entirely new. Marvel's Thor has been portrayed in female form (by usual romantic interest Jane Foster), and a black Kryptonian by the name of Val-Zod has essentially played the Superman role during his Earth 2 run. An infamous picture of former President Barack Obama striking a Superman pose in front of a massive statue of the “Man of Steel” lead to Obama being portrayed as a Superman-like figure in the form of Calvin Ellis (also a Kryptonian).

Long story short, “The Rock” has pretty large boots to fill if he ever does get tapped to play a black Superman. That being said, given his past as the most electrifying man in sports entertainment as well as a big box-office draw, there can be little doubt that he is man enough to give it a go.

For a lot of comic fans (and fans of The Rock) it’s well past time for a different version of the son of Krypton.

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More than Half of Men Are Ashamed of Their Body Hair, Says Survey

Body hair happens. For some, it happens a lot more than others. We learn about this in the very first lessons in health class or — perhaps even more embarrassing — from our parents. Body hair is a reality of life for most men, but if you are particularly blessed, the issue can actually lead to poor self-esteem, a new survey suggests.

RELATED: Body Hair Removal for Men – Do's and Don'ts

According to the New York Post, new research provided by OnePoll (on behalf of shaving tool company BAKBlade) suggests that manly men from all walks of life are ashamed of the natural hair which grows in various spots of their bodies. From a sample size of 2,000 men, 55% of those surveyed admitted to being ashamed of their hairy selves. Perhaps even more saddening is the fact that 20% reported “often” feeling ashamed of their body hair.

So why not just get out the razor or grab a sturdy body hair trimmer and knock down the hedges or trim back the grass? BAKBlade CEO Matt Dryfhout claims that the primary issue is one of masculine pride, outdated or no.

“When most men think of having better ‘grooming habits’ they often think of going into a salon and waiting for their name to be called for their waxing session,” Dryfhout said. “Who wants that?”

As it turns out, 44% of men surveyed said that they consider top-shelf grooming habits as “unmanly,” and 62% of guys said they’d never shaved their back — not even a single time. Surprisingly, more men had shaved their legs than had shaved their back, with 47% of men admitting to having stripped their legs of hair at least once.

There is at least some degree of curiosity present in even the most staunch opponents of shaving one's body hair, however. Nearly half of male subjects in the survey confessed to having experimented at least once with their partner's grooming products, and the average fellow coughs up just under $40 on grooming products per month.

The tides may be shifting in favor of a more clean-shaven male image, according to Dryfhout.

“While men, overall, are getting more curious in the area of grooming, it is the millennials that are showing the most curiosity,” he said. “The biggest hurdle has been showing men options available to them while at the same time letting them know how easy it can be.”

What's old is new again, after all. While thick stubble, lumberjack chops and well-oiled pirate beards still seem to be all the rage among greater male culture, those with longer memories can probably remember the thick, furry chests (and truly epic mustaches) once proudly rocked by guys like Burt Reynolds in Smokey and the Bandit and Tom Selleck in Magnum P.I.

With that history lesson in masculinity in mind, it may be time to either embrace your body hair with manly pride — or to pick up a razor, some shave gel, and have at it.

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Kitchen Tools You Can Use as Sex Toys

Nowadays, you can purchase a sex toy to help fulfill just about any bedroom fantasy you want. Whether it involves whips, chains, vibrations or a video camera, it’s probably out there waiting to be purchased.

That being said, the higher quality products aren’t exactly on the cheap side. Lucky for you, there’s a solution if you’re not looking to drop a couple hundred bucks for a high-end sex toy. The answer? Take a peek in your kitchen. 

RELATED: The 36 Best Sex Toys for Men

Why buy a paddle when you've got a perfectly good spatula in your drawer? While not every utensil is applicable when it comes to doing the dirty, there are plenty of common kitchen items that can absolutely take on the double duty. Just … make sure you're washing everything thoroughly afterward for sanitary reasons, of course. 

Here's how to spice up your love life with a few kitchen tools you probably already own. 

Kitchen Tools You Can Use as Sex Toys  GettyImages

Plastic wrap is meant to keep things lively and fresh, so why not let it do what it does best when it comes to your next romp? 

"Plastic wrap can be used as a restraint instead of handcuffs or a scarf," explains Dr. Jess O’Reilly, Astroglide’s resident sexologist. "It is inexpensive, stretchy and sticks to itself, making it ideal for a little afternoon delight at the kitchen table. Just be sure not to stretch it as you wrap — you want to leave some room for circulation."

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"Candle wax can produce a tsunami of new sensations ranging from soft and warming to jarring and tingling," says O'Reilly. "Use a melting body candle designed specifically for the skin or purchase non-colored, unscented soy or paraffin candles from a discount store." 

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Baking isn’t the only thing you can use a pastry brush for. It’s also an ideal tool for applying wax, lubricants or lotions to your partner's body (or for simply dragging it along their skin to create a tickling sensation). 

The wispy brush is also perfect for teasing, especially if your partner is blindfolded. With all their senses heightened, the back-and-forth motions with the brush will help to push ‘em over the edge.

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It doesn’t have to be Thanksgiving for you to whip out that turkey baster. This is another tool that can also be used to spread wax around, upping the anticipation level for your partner before the sex actually begins. 

"Dripping it on can create a sexy visual and the wax will cool as it drops, so increase your distance to reduce the heat," notes Dr. O'Reilly. 

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Warm your favorite sweet and sticky treat up in the microwave or fondue pot before covering your partner in it. Who said mess was a bad thing? 

"Relish in the sensual application, then lick it all off," says O'Reilly. But safety first, people — make sure the temperature doesn't exceed 120 degrees, or your sexual escapades could send one of you to the emergency room. 

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"Temperature play is one of the most underused sexual tools," says O’Reilly. "Ice can be used to liven up oral sex or drastically alter the sensation of a French kiss." 

Play with dual temperatures for added pleasure. "Awaken a patch of your lover’s most responsive nerve endings by licking a line down their spine and then breathing warm air over the path," she adds. "Create a stark contrast by following up with an ice cube applied directly to the skin or used to trickle cold drops down their back as their skin erupts in goosebumps."

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A wooden spoon and spanking go hand-in-hand, but make sure you test the waters with your partner first before your first swing. 

"When paddling a partner, warm it up against your hand to test out its intensity and tease them with the sound of what’s to come," says O'Reilly. "Use the middle, not the edge of the paddle, to apply gentle, slow strokes to the buttocks or thighs while gradually increasing the speed and intensity." 

Many spoons have both a convex and concave side, so alternate between the two as you vary your rhythm and pressure. Be sure to check in, too, making sure your partner is safe and comfortable. 

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As long as you're extra careful, intimacy expert Miyoko Rifkin says pizza cutters can double as an exciting method for stimulating your partner. Anyone order the sausage?

"It's an interesting sensation – similar to a pinwheel, but without the prickly feeling on your skin,” she says. “Just a cool, metal blade rolling over your flesh. Not too sharp to cut, but just enough pressure to feel dangerous." 

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Leftover chopsticks from your sushi dinner or Chinese take-out? Add rubber bands and incorporate them into an evening of kinky fun. 

"Pinch the nipples, labia, the skin of the scrotum, or anywhere you can grab some flesh,” notes Rifkin. “And then apply rubber bands to tighten around both ends.”

GettyImages

Ever play around with a chip clip, pinching yourself finger or other parts of your skin? Well, picture that, but with a lot less clothes on. Keep your chips and sex life fresh at the same time, using them as clamps in the bedroom if you or your partner is itching for a little amateur BDSM play. 

To keep things on the safer side, opt for the plastic version rather than metal. And, as always, make sure you and your partner on the same page about limitations and safe words when engaging in something that could inflict a level of pain (that should ultimately lead to pleasure).

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Men Discuss Receiving Oral Sex

Blowjobs. Fellatio. Getting head. Playing the skin flute. OK, maybe I'm the only one who still uses that last one. What I'm trying to get at here is that there are a ton of different terms for oral sex. Why? Simple. Because men just love oral sex.

Just how much do they enjoy receiving it? According to one study done by Love Matters, over 70% of men would rather have someone go down on them than have actual intercourse. I would have put my money on P in the V winning out here, but apparently there's nothing that beats someone going downtown on you.

Which got me thinking, what's so great about oral sex? What do guys really think about oral pleasure? To help your partner help you out, I asked men to tell me all the details about the best parts of getting head, the mistakes to avoid, and a few, um, colorful anecdotes about what it's like when women simply blow them away.

Here's what a few honest men had to say about getting their tips wet:

1. Like A Wild Adventure

"Bad oral sex feels like a waste of time. Good oral sex feels like falling spread eagle through the sky into vanilla flavored clouds — and the more you fall, the better you feel. And the sun isn't above you, but underneath you, and it gets more and more intense, but not in a burning way (thank God) until you can't take it anymore and you cum. It feels like a piece of your soul is riding a little tiny inner tube down a creamy river, and while you feel accomplished in that very powerful moment, all you want is for her to leave you and your penis alone so that the missing piece of soul can be sewed back up. Then you go again, or give her an excuse to go away." - Hashim, 36

RELATED: Here's What She's Thinking When She's Going Down On You (In GIFs)

2. Calm But Excited

"You know that feeling you get inside during the winter when you're cold and stuck in the house on a snowy day? Then you grab a book, hot chocolate and a warm blanket, and you are so unbelievably comfortable? It is having your mind clear, but your thoughts race at the same time. It is being calm on the outside, but about to explode with excitement on the inside (pun very much intended)." - Jim, 29

3. Best When There's A Connection

"The keyword is 'intimacy.' Without an intense, spiritual connection, oral sex is a mundane act; the response merely involuntary. True oral intimacy produces an incomparable feeling that can scarcely be described." - Brian, 29

4. Tough To Describe

"It's hard to put into words what oral sex feels like for me, which is kind of frustrating for me because I write for a living, but it kind of defies specific explanation. In my experience, it's the best physical feeling in the world next to vaginal sex. In a few words, a blowjob feels warm and wet, with occasional jolts of ecstasy usually caused my some sort of move with the tongue. I guess it depends on who's going down on you, though. If there's something like too much teeth involved, it can be downright painful. But if it's good, it feels like high-fiving God (or what I imagine that would feel like, anyway)." - Raymond, 29

5. Like A Warm Spring

"Good oral intimacy feels like having your favorite four-thousand nerve endings dipped in the warm spring that comes from God's own garden. Bad oral intimacy feels like rubbing a cheese grater up and down your wang like it's a bad block of pecorino." -Daniel, 29

RELATED: Everything You Need To Know About Giving Her Oral Pleasure In Return

6. Best When There's Eye Contact

"You don't want your blowjob to turn into a staring contest. But when I'm looking down at the girl who has so graciously decided to offer up her fellatio talent unto my penis, I hate seeing a whole bunch of hair for the whole duration of things. Mind you, I don't want to lock eyes with her the entire time. I'd imagine her neck would end up hurting, and also, it just feels awkward. But getting those few glimpses of her bobbing up and down on me while making eye contact is so hot, and definitely adds to the experience." - Paul, 29

7. A Sucker For Suction

"There's this vacuum effect that some girls who have gone down on me have been able to create, and I think that's when oral sex is at it's best. It's still not as tight as being inside of her, but it's a whole other sensation that you're not used to feeling from just penetration. I'm not sure exactly how to describe it, but basically she's sucking air in while moving her mouth up and down on it. The orgasms that come from this one are really intense." - Carl, 23

8. Teeth Add An Element Of Um...Danger

"When a woman has taken me into her mouth, there is something aggressive about it. If, for example, she uses her teeth to hold me — then there is a thrill different from the simple pleasure of touch. The act conveys danger. When she says 'I'm going to eat you,' there is the hint — or threat — that she will devour my cock." - Irwin, 24

RELATED: Five Ways To Enjoy The Best Blowjob Of Your Life Tonight

9. It Needs Variety

"Blowjobs can get boring if she's just doing the same movement over and over. If it's just an in and out motion, it feels good, don't get me wrong. But I'm not as into it as if she's touching my balls, grabbing my shaft, giving the tip of my dick a flick with her tongue sporadically. I need her to keep it interesting, you know?" - Kyle, 22

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