2023 Sex and Dating Trends: Sexual Mindfulness, Booty Business and Talking Foreplay with your Gran

by Lovehoney

on Feb 13, 2023

Find out the 6 trends impacting your dating and sex life this year.

2023 Sex and Dating Trends - summary image

Whether you’re in it for love or lust, the world of sex and dating is littered with enough booby traps as it is, without having to keep track of changing societal attitudes and expectations. Dating apps, first date small talk and the uncertainty around sleeping with someone new can trigger so much stress that the ‘Married at First Sight’ set up starts to look like an attractive option. That’s when you know things aren’t looking good.

Instead of waiting for the hidden surprises to catch you out, Lovehoney Group have released their 2023 Sex Trends Report to give you the run down on what’s happening in frisky town this year. Our 6 predictions for 2023 will have you prepped and prepared for a pleasure-filled year like no other.

Let’s dive right into these dirty little secrets.

Mindfulness is shifting from our heads to our beds

2023 sex and dating trends - mindfulness

If you’re one to thump a few thrusts before it’s all over, we’ve got some bad news for you. We’re saying goodbye to performance-centred sex in 2023, focusing more on the jiggly journey than the end destination. Miley said it right all those years ago: “Ain’t about how fast you get there, ain’t about what’s waiting on the other side. It’s the climb.”

Instead of worrying whether your moans are loud enough or if you should have hit the big O by now, people are forgetting about the predetermined script and spending a greater amount of time exploring each other’s bodies. We’re looking for quality over quantity in our sexual interactions, staying present in the moment and enjoying every sensation on offer without the pressure to perform or climax. It’s safe to say that the post-covid desperation has subsided and a conscious consumption of coitus is on the cards.

We’re dating with intention

2023 sex and dating trends - dating

Looks like those trust falls we all hated in high school are making a comeback. Metaphorically, that is. We’re prioritising good ol’ bonding before bonking and saying goodbye to half-minded swipe rights and casual dating this year. Singles are looking for a “slow love” these days, prioritising an emotional connection and meaningful conversations before initiating an intimate relationship.

Blurred boundaries will fade into the background as people seek out more stability and authenticity from their pleasure playmates. So, make sure you’re prepared for more intimate dinners and less bed-to-bar action when dating this year.

Taboo is turning trendy

2023 sex and dating trends - taboo

Topics that were once considered too risqué to mention outside of the bedroom, are now being discussed openly in casual conversations over coffee. Intimate topics like menstruation, sex and (female) sexuality are being approached with greater confidence and curiosity, replacing the dreaded small talk questions we all know and hate. While this doesn’t mean you can strike up a conversation with your g-ma about foreplay, you are more likely to broach more vulnerable topics while diving into the dating pool this year.

These vulnerable conversations aren’t just stopping after the first few dates either. According to our global survey, 38% of women and nearly half (46%) of men are diving into the topic of sexual desires and fantasies during the first 3 months of dating. Even new dating platforms like the sex-positive app, Feeld, are encouraging a greater level of transparency, allowing users to easily communicate sexual orientations and fantasies right from the first “hey”. For this reason, there’s no better time to figure out exactly what gets you hot and bothered, or else a long awkward silence awaits you.

If you’re wondering how to discover your own dirty desires, social media is where it’s at (for research purposes, of course). Sex ed is running rampant online, with new terms such as “outercourse”, “vabbing” and “praise kinks” all going viral on TikTok over the past 12 months. A recent global survey conducted by Lovehoney has shown that when learning about masturbation, the internet as a source of information (39%) plays an equally important role as trying it out (41%) for young people between 18-24 years old. Asking the same question to people aged 35 and older, the majority only learned about self-love by trying it out (53%), followed by talking to friends and family as a source of information (26%). So, you better come prepared to your next date.

We’re bonding with the long-lost sibling of the g-spot

2023 sex and dating trends - p-spot

And who knew it was sitting right under your ‘nose’ the whole time? The prostate gland, otherwise referred to as the p-spot, is becoming a rising star in stimulation for penis-owners. Located just one inch inside the backdoor, the gland is about the size of a chestnut and made up of sensitive muscle tissue. A global study recently brought to light that 4 out of 5 men had never heard of the prostate being an erogenous zone. Of those who were p-spot enlightened, 34% had never tried to stimulate it.

Clearly this unexplored territory needs some tender lovin’ care, especially since it offers the possibility of full-body orgasms when massaged externally through the perinium or stimulated internally through the anus.

However, keep in mind that p-spot stimulation through the backdoor is not a sprint, but an explorative journey. Lovehoney sex coach, Cam Fraser notes that penis-owners “should take their time, relax, breathe, use a generous amount of lube, and be curious about what they find pleasurable. A prostate massager or an anal vibrator can add that extra stimulation. Of course, you shouldn't force anyone to do it, but if you follow a few guidelines, prostate stimulation can be an intense, positive, and pleasurable experience."

The call of booty is certainly growing stronger in 2023, so make sure to check out Lovehoney’s range of prostate massagers to treat your tush to these new sensations.

We’re re-exploring anal play

2023 sex and dating trends - anal play

Given 2023 is all about opening up conversations about sex and sexuality, the logical next step is opening up our backdoors, right? Bumfunnery has copped a bad rap in the past, being plagued with shame and other negative feelings until now. 2023 is the year we expand our horizons and travel to the dark side of the moon.

However, if deep diving through door #2 sounds a bit too intense for you, anal exploration without penetration is also making a name for itself.

In fact, a study by Indiana University recently discovered three different ways of stimulating the anus that feels pleasurable for women in particular: Anal Surfacing, Anal Shallowing and Anal Pairing. Touching around, on top and slightly inside the anus can trigger new levels of pleasure, especially when paired with vaginal penetration or clitoral stimulation. So, if you’ve avoided anal action in the past, 2023 might be the time to re-ass-ess.

We’re enjoying more techy turn-ons

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Cybersex had a hold on us for a while there during the pandemic. While we’re happy to turn off the screens and step out of the house now, we’re not giving up on a little tech while we tap. And no, we’re not talking about sex robots, although our global study did find that 36% of you were curious to try it out. No, we’re talking about smart sex toys. App-connectivity, toys with heating functionality and vibrators that sync to your music are all flying off the shelves and into our sheets with greater demand in 2023.

The same global study found that more than half of respondents (60%) are open to using a sex toy that can be controlled via an app. Their reasoning for using the toy didn’t just revolve around practicality, such as sustaining intimacy in long-term relationships (26%). The majority (79%) were simply just interested in spicing things up in the bedroom. Our cheeky bedroom buddies are clearly not staying tucked inside our bedside table drawers anymore when visitors come.

If you’re in the market for these new techy turn-ons, you might also notice a change in how you shop for toys this year. Once considered a no-go zone for mainstream retailers, trendy period products and sex toys are now hitting the shelves of everyday supermarkets and drugstores as aesthetically pleasing lifestyle products. No longer will you have to brave the dimly lit, dingy environment of in-person adult stores just to score some sweet sensations.

Straight from traditional brick-and-mortar stores to the streets of the metaverse, sex toys are also popping up in virtual shopping experiences. New technologies such as Augmented Reality (AR), Mixed Reality, Virtual Reality and Artificial Intelligence (AI) are now allowing consumers to get an idea of the size and shape of sex toys before purchasing from the comfort of their own homes. Lovehoney themselves opened a pop-up store in the metaverse world, Decentraland last year to offer an anonymous place for people to explore sexual wellness products and content. The pop-up store was open 24/7 for 2 weeks and welcomed customers from all over the world to virtually inspect and shop Lovehoney products in privacy.

While we won’t see sex toy stores lining the metaverse streets in 2023, these trends show that tech is becoming increasingly intertwined in our sneaky sexcapades.

Get flirty and dirty this year

From sexual mindfulness to anal exploration, 2023 is sure to take us on a wide ride of exhilarating experiences that make our cheeks blush and hearts pump faster. While not every sex trend will be everyone’s cup of tea, these predictions can serve as a reminder to switch up the dating status quo and try new things this year. A satisfied you equals a happier you, after all.


Written by Lovehoney. For collaborative posts between Lovehoney team members and guest authors
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Originally published on Feb 13, 2023. Updated on Feb 13, 2023