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Maintaining Sexual Attraction and Keeping the Spark Alive in Relationships

Written by Alice Child, Somatic Sexologist

Sydney-based Somatic Sexologist and Sex & Intimacy Counsellor Alice Child gives her top tips for keeping the sexual spark alive in long term relationships, and how to maintain sexual attraction year after year.

Maintaining sexual attraction in a long-term relationship
Maintaining sexual attraction in a long-term relationship

This guide contains general advice only. If you need more tailored advice, please book in a session.

Novelty is the spice of life...and rocket fuel for attraction.

Sexual attraction is a key part of the erotic formula "Arousal = Attraction + Obstacles". In order to have a long and fulfilling sex life, it's important to learn how to keep sexual connection and attraction alive as your relationship evolves.

If you are ready to take the next step to improve your relationship and sex life, book in a session or check out my couples programs.

Here are some initial tips to help you get maintain your sexual attraction and chemistry in long term relationships:

Tip 1: Keep Adventuring

When was the last time you learnt something new together? Novelty and newness are huge aphrodisiacs, so keep trying trying new things in life - not just sex.

Be playful, get curious, go on adventures, and trigger your creativity.

Novelty is the spice of life...and rocket fuel for attraction.

Schedule good quality time for date nights / date days & holidays. There is a very good reason why so many people have amazing sex on holiday. Don’t forget that!

Tip 2: Don't fall into a parent/child dynamic

You are each others lovers, not parents. So act like it. Pick up after yourself. Don‘t patronise each other. Don‘t ‘parent‘ them by telling them when to go to sleep or what to eat.

Nothing kills attraction faster than feeling you are living with a child or a parent. Especially if you already have little ones!

Make sure you share the mental, emotional and physical load in the house. Couples who share the housework are statistically more likely to have more sex. So share the chores and your mental load equally.

Tip 3: Meaningful & Varied Compliments

Attraction is so often about confidence. Help each other FEEL attractive by showing & telling them. Often. And don’t just say the same old lazy lines. Mix it up and make it meaningful. It was hit differently.

Instead of saying ‘hi beautiful’ for the 1000th time, try complimenting a specific thing. “You look beautiful” is so different to “I love your body in that dress!”

And remember - men need compliments too! (and get them far less in our society). Don’t neglect telling your man he is sexy too.

Tip 4: Initiate with Seduction

Don‘t take each other for granted and fall into lazy habits when it comes to initiating sex. Every body wants to feel sexy, wanted, desired & attractive. So seduce each other - even 20 years later!

Don’t just think about your needs when you initiate sex - think about what helps them get in the mood. Don’t do the same thing every time. Mix it up. And take a no gracefully.

This is all about treating the whole relationship as foreplay. When you do this, your confidence, closeness, intimacy & attraction will thrive.

Tip 5: Prioritise yourself

Forget ‘two become one’! Great attraction, connection and chemistry needs a bit of distance and mystery. It’s often the things that make our partner different from us that first attracted us to them.

Remember, there is a difference between privacy and secrecy. Healthy relationships respect privacy and alone time. Practice lovingly giving and respecting each others‘ solo time.

Plus, don't forget to make an effort on yourself. Think about what makes you feel sexiest/most confident, and prioritise it. Encourage your partner to do the same.

It’s not realistic to be ”always on” for your partner, but don’t turn completely off. There is a difference between wearing no makeup and feeling fresh in PJs to leaving your dirty underwear on the floor. Find your boundaries!

Tip 6: See their sexual attraction through other people's eyes

Take a step backwards from seeing them as your “flatmate” or “friend“ and see them as your lover. Remember why you fell in love with them!

  • What first attracted you?

  • What attractive qualities do they still have?

  • How would a stanger see them?

  • What attributes do you most value/love about them?

It's also healthy to reframe your mindset and look at them in new ways- attraction can comes from many things and it can keep evolving over a lifetime. For example...:

  • Sweaty gym gear = you‘re so strong and athletic. I want to rip those clothes off you!

  • Pregnancy stretch marks = your body is so incredible. I want to worship every curve

  • No makeup PJs on sofa = I love these intimate moments just the two of us.

Tip 7: Talk about your red lights / green lights

Have open, ongoing conversations about sex, desires, and intimacy. It might be that very simple things super charge your attraction (eg putting on a certain outfit/scent) and other things are turn offs. For example:

Green lights:

  • What turns you on?

  • When do you each feel at your sexiest / most confident?

  • What makes you feel connected / attracted to each other?

  • What is your favourite part of them?

  • What gets you in the mood?

Red lights:

  • What turns you off?

  • When do you not feel sexy/ confident?

  • What makes you feel disconnected to each other?

  • What Icks might you have that can be addressed with a loving conversation (eg please never use a baby voice!)

Tip 8: Fantasise about them (instead of porn)

Porn can be great for solo pleasure, but don‘t let it completely replace thinking about your partner when you masturbate. Instead, let your mind wander.

Think of the things you want to do together. Think about what you enjoy doing / saying / touching and feeling.

Using fantasy instead of porn can give you new ideas for sex & intimacy, and keeps your desire for each other strong. If you need visual stimulation - ask for and share nudes together! We are never too old!

Want more support? Consider booking into my couples sex and intimacy programs. You will learn what you like, how to ask for it, how to navigate differences, and get lots of ideas for trying new things together and keep your sexual spark alive.


Alice Child - Somatic Sexologist, Sex Therapy & Sex Counsellor - helps people achieve happier and healthier sex lives through 1:1 sex coaching, couples sex counselling, hens parties, and workshops. Book a session here.

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