Something we wished more people talked about part 5,983: phone sex. File that under those sexual fantasies you’d really like to be less of a dream and more of a reality—like joining the mile high club, for example. Luckily, you don’t need a private jet for this kind of sex. Just your phone, your partner, and some courage.
Phone sex is all about the auditory eroticism, says Shamyra Howard, LCSW, an AASECT-certified sex therapist and founder of onthegreencouch.com. But it’s not just for long-distance relationships where physical intimacy is miles away.
"People use phone sex to increase eroticism and sexual play in their relationships," says Howard. It’s a great way for any and all couples to spice things up, feel sexually validated, and get off. After all, research shows that novelty is like an aphrodisiac for your brain.
But like any sexual activity that’s new and unfamiliar, phone sex can feel daunting and uncomfortable. "It’s really vulnerable," says Dr. Jenni Skyler, PhD, an AASECT-certified sex therapist and director of The Intimacy Institute. "You’re putting yourself out there, and it takes a lot of courage." But that’s no reason not to try.
"Once you try it and realize it's not so scary and dangerous, it can be really fun," Skyler adds. "Anything new and unfamiliar can feel intimidating, but that’s okay, let yourself feel the intimidation." Your first-time phone sex motto: Feel the fear, and do it anyway. Why? For starters, it's a seriously hot addition to your in-person sex life, but that's not the only reason (stay on the line for more). Here's everything you need to know about kissing—and doing everything else—through the phone, according to experts:
So, what exactly counts as phone sex?
Phone sex is the act of talking about, engaging in, or hearing you and your partners' sexual acts or fantasies over the phone. It’s sharing anything erotic on the phone, whether it’s auditory or with a screen, says Skyler. "At this point, I qualify anything with a FaceTime or Zoom on the phone as phone sex too—which is more screen sex, but it still counts," she adds. "In this day and age, phone sex also includes sexting." Noted.
You don’t necessarily have to reach an orgasm during phone sex—but if that’s the goal you and your partner establish, then go for the 'O'. That said, many people have phone sex where only one person is engaging in self-pleasure and the other is not. Sometimes, it’s just for the eroticism and connection. Think of phone sex as a shared moment of validation and sexiness that may or may not include orgasm. Bottom line: Just do what works for you and don't worry too much about labels.
How do you ensure that you have consent to start phone sex?
Consent is one of the most important parts of phone sex because one, you always need consent from a partner to engage in any sexual behavior, and two, it makes it less awkward. There’s no exception to the consent rule, even if there's no physical contact involved.
First, test the waters with your partner to establish that both of you are into the idea. "I always encourage couples to use language like, 'I would love to try this...' or 'How does that sound to you?'" says Skyler. "You have to come from a place of curiosity, rather than a demand." Say something like, "I’ve been thinking it’d be hot to try phone sex, what do you think about trying it out?"
"You have to come from a place of curiosity, rather than a demand."
You also want to talk about when it’s okay to initiate phone sex and when it’s not okay. A common first question to initiate phone sex is: "What are you wearing?" It gives the option to continue if you want, or if you don't, you can say something like, "I'm wearing clothes," and shut it down.
Some people have codes they send each other, like an emoji, that lets them know they’re in the mood, or a stop sign emoji that means stop. "You want to know your partner's do's and don'ts of phone sex," says Howard, "And you always want to get consent first."
Got consent? Here's your game plan for phone sex perfection:
1. Be yourself.
"Because so many people have watched phone sex portrayed on TV or in a movie, or even read about phone sex, they feel like they have to get into character. But make it less awkward and less intimidating by being yourself," Howard advises.
Start with something racy but realistic, like talking about the last time you had sex IRL. You want to be sexually stimulated, but "you don't have to be in an erotic novel or porn scene," says Howard. "It doesn't always have to be hardcore." Tell your partner something that you really like about them, or something that you really miss about them as well. There's no need to force or overdo it.
2. Build up the suspense for phone sex.
Set the stage for your evening phone sex date by teasing your partner during the day. Shooting over a quick, flirty text—"I’ve been thinking of you naked all day"—or a sexy, NSFW snap can help you both gradually get in the mood, says Gigi Engle, a certified sex coach and sexologist.
3. Don’t be afraid to laugh and have fun.
Here’s the thing, phone sex (or any sex, really) can get a little weird and feel awkward at times. Laugh it off! "I tell couples often that if you're not laughing when you're having sex, you're not having fun," says Howard.
If you or your partner does something that catches you off guard and makes you laugh, let it happen. You should absolutely laugh, and then get back into the moment, says Howard.
A lot of people forget that sex is actually supposed to be fun, so don’t take it too seriously and enjoy yourself.
4. Guide your partner.
For a lot of people, guiding your partner through sexual acts is very arousing. "It’s sort of that dominant-submissive dynamic of 'I’m going to guide you and you’re going to listen,'" says Skyler.
To guide your partner through the process, you can start by telling them to take off their undergarments, and then tell them specific places to touch themselves.
5. Make sure you're having phone sex with someone you trust.
It’s worth emphasizing that your phone sex partner should be someone you trust. For long-term relationships, phone sex is great, but for hookups, just understand that's what it is, says Skyler. It’s a moment of sexiness and validation that could or could not happen again, so make sure you're totally comfortable with the context before you begin.
6. Seek out some inspo.
As you get closer to go-time, continue to get those "juices flowing" (heh) by reading an erotic novel or peeping a little porn at home.
Your goal is to get inspo for the scene you'll set up during your sexy call. "Describing something you have in mind is easier than making something up on the spot," Engle says. But remember, you're only looking for inspiration here—you don't need to try to recreate an over-the-top sex scene to get your partner going.
Want to know how "normal" your sex life is? All your Qs, answered:
7. Eliminate distractions.
"Set yourself up for a relaxing encounter, because arousal has to emerge within the context of relaxation," says Skyler. So, that laptop on your desk? Close it. Your door? Lock it. Your partner (and erogenous zones, for that matter) deserves your undivided attention during phone sex just as much as during regular sex, if not more since it can be harder to get into the mood.
8. Set the stage.
Mood matters during in-person sex, and it matters during phone sex. Light some candles. Change your sheets. Wear your sexiest lingerie. This will also help you describe the (sexy) scene to your partner. Again, relaxation is key to feeling in the mood, so Skyler even suggests trying it in the bathtub, too, if that makes you chill TF out. Just be careful with where you place your phone, mkay?
9. Ease into phone sex.
Don’t feel like you have to rush straight into dirty talk. Instead, ease into it by asking your partner about their day, suggests Janet Brito, PhD, a clinical psychologist and AASECT-certified sex therapist in Honolulu. Hearing about their lunchtime burrito may seem seriously unsexy, but it sets up a natural opportunity to change a boring conversation into an exciting one. Think of it like an actual date: You'd probably chat a bit before taking your clothes off, right?
10. Then, up the ante.
When it's your turn to talk about your day, start hashing out moments when your partner crossed your mind, including details about specific steamy ideas or fantasies that popped up during the hours leading up to your call.
11. Make yourself comfortable.
As you start talking, get situated in a place and way that you’re physically comfortable—and share these play-by-play details with your partner.
For example: "I got so hot thinking about this, I just took off my clothes. I'm lying on my bed right now and loving the fresh feeling of the sheets on my body...the only thing that's missing is you." Just an idea!
12. Get wordy—like, really wordy.
Overall, the more descriptive you are, the more your partner will be able to visualize your sexual fantasy and join in, Brito explains.
She also suggests taking the time to describe each other’s erogenous zones by using a variety of synonyms. If this means prepping ahead of time by crafting a bit of a script or putting together a list of verbs and adjectives, then do just that. (No, it's not weird.)
To convey what you want, start off by using fill-in-the-blank sentences (yes, Mad Libs style). "I love it when you _____ my _____," or "I wish I could _____ to your _____ right now."
Basically, specificity is sexy.
13. Bring some toys in on the phone sex action.
Simply put: Toys can be a great way to not only help you get off during phone sex, but also give you something to, ya know, talk about. Spell out exactly how you’re using, say, your vibrator (where you're putting it, how hard you're pressing it onto your clitoris, how fast you're moving it, etc.), and how it makes you feel.
"Allow your partner to hear what's happening," says Howard. "Let your partner hear the buzzing of the toy, and tell them what you wish they could be doing with it."
Consider phone sex an opportunity to play around with new masturbation techniques, too. Instead of just focusing on your clitoris the entire time, try stimulating the nipples, labia, and/or vaginal opening.
14. Comment as you experiment.
This takes some getting used to, but yep, phone sex requires a level of narration that you don't need during IRL sex. So, as you're playing around with those new masturbation techniques above, do *not* keep the play-by-play to yourself! That’s definitely something to add to the conversation, says Howard. Try something like, "I'm touching myself here and here, but I wish it were to you."
15. Listen to your partner—and to your body.
By paying close attention to everything your partner says and does—including their breathing patterns—you’ll have a better idea of whether or not you’re hitting the right buttons.
The quicker the pace of their breath, the more likely they are on the verge of finishing, says Stephanie Cathcart, professional phone-sex operator and founder of Total Lip Service. Noticing how excited they're getting should (hopefully) turn you on even more.
16. When in doubt, moan.
On that note, don’t be afraid to let out your own deep breaths and moans to cue your partner in on where you are and what works for you.
If you start to get in your head ("I feel ridiculous" or "This is kinda weird"), go back to your own heart rate, breath, and even body temp, says Brito. This will help you stay present and in the mood.
17. Or ask a question.
You don't need to narrate the entire time. In fact, like a regular conversation, 50/50 is best when it comes to phone sex. If you're feeling stuck on what to say, feel free to throw it back to your partner: "Where are your hands right now? What does your underwear look like?"
Howard notes that it’s important to answer those questions in a full sentence. "If your partner asks you a question, don't just say, 'Yeah,' 'No,' 'Okay.'" Make sure you engage your partner with detailed answers to keep the momentum going.
18. Speak up to switch gears.
Like regular sex, something might kill the phone sex mood, and if that happens, it's okay to #voiceyourtruth. Take the reins if it's going somewhere you're not into, or say you'd like to take it slowwww if that's the case.
19. Consider phone sex with role play.
"The phone is a great way to be silly or act out and talk about things that you might not feel as comfortable doing in person—or at least, not at first," says Cathcart.
For this reason, phone sex serves as an incredible gateway to role play, because you're able to go through the motions without going to the nines (a.k.a. dressing up).
So for a little extra fun (because, again, novelty), feel free to get creative with your voice, such as opting for a higher pitch tone for a "school girl" or a lower one for a "dominatrix."
If you'd rather just keep phone sex real (which is perfectly A-okay), Cathcart recommends ditching the dramatics. "There’s a natural seductiveness about a woman’s voice, especially when you’re in an intimate relationship with that person," she explains.
20. Reminisce about the past.
If you’re not sure what to say or where to begin, bring up a sexy memory that you and your partner shared together. By calling on a throwback, you have an easy script: You’re able to talk through the motions of what you each did to each other.
Plus, you’ll know what’s coming next, so you’re less likely to get confused or lost, Engle says.
21. Embrace the digital age (or not).
Using your imagination is part of what makes phone sex so hot, but don't forget that you've got more video tools at your disposal than ever. Why not start with a little phone action, then switch to video chat sex when things get heated? Your game, your rules. On that note, feel free to tell your partner that this is a visual-free zone if that's what you're comfortable with.
22. Wait until you *both* finish (if that's your goal).
Your end goal here doesn’t have to be a fast orgasm, BTW. In fact, at least according to Engle, phone sex doesn't need to be about orgasm at all. "It's about experiencing pleasure," she says.
But if you want to, keep going until you orgasm! Whoever climaxes first should ideally stay on the line until the other reaches the finish line, too. Or at the very least, the convo should end at a stopping point that works for both of you. Abrupt endings are kinda the worst, am I wrong?
23. Close your eyes.
It can be easier to walk through an experience if the only things you’re focusing on are your partner’s voice and your own body’s sensations, such as the tingling from your vibrator. "It’s like homemade auditory porn," Engle says. So get some shut eye (but not literally, hah) and let yourself experience all the sensual pleasure that your partner's voice can offer.
How do you end a phone sex conversation?
If orgasm is your goal, then you should definitely continue the conversation until you get there. But if you aren't going to orgasm, incorporate the ending into your call, says Howard. Say something like, "That was really good for me. How was it for you?" to let your partner know when it's over on your end. Howard also recommends actually signing off: "Make sure you end the call before transitioning to normal conversations, then restart the call so that it's a different scene."
Skyler suggests doing the same thing you would if you were physically together. "Have that reflection period that is part of the human sexual response," she says. The reflection period is when the sexual process is done and you cuddle, connect, reflect on what was fun and exciting, and talk about next time.