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What Is Sexual Aftercare?

What Is Sexual Aftercare?

You’ve likely heard a lot about foreplay and how important it is, but what about what happens after sex? 

Sexual aftercare is all about how you and your partner care for each other after sex. Think of it like tying up loose ends into a neat bow. 

If you’ve ever helped your partner get dressed after sex or cuddled up to watch your favorite show together after, you’ve already practiced aftercare! By checking in with each other’s mental, physical, and emotional needs, you can help each other feel safe and seen. 

Why it matters

Maybe you’ve heard the term aftercare in association with the BDSM community. That’s because sex that involves bondage, domination and submission, and other common elements of BDSM can be pretty intense. That makes aftercare very important in this community so everyone can feel grounded and ready to get back to reality. 

Aftercare is important for any sexual experience, though, since it’s important to process the sexual experience and discuss what you liked or didn’t like with your partner. Debriefing helps prevent the emotional comedown that follows sex. 

That comedown is very real since, during sex, dopamine and other feel-good chemicals and hormones are released. It’s part of what makes having sex so fun! But once sex is finished and those hormones decrease, it can lead to an emotional comedown. There are other personal reasons that post-sex can be a draining emotional experience, such as internal guilt and shame around sex or feeling uncomfortable in one’s body. That makes aftercare all the more important. 

Ways to practice sexual aftercare 

Sexual aftercare can take many forms — there’s no checklist or one right way to do it. What this looks like may also depend on the nature of your relationship with your partner. Aftercare may feel especially vulnerable when you’re having sex outside of a relationship, but having your needs met is important no matter the relationship status. 

Aftercare goes beyond just cleaning up and using the bathroom after sex, though doing those things is important, too. Here’s what aftercare can look like: 

  • Helping each other clean up 
  • Talking about the experience — what you liked and disliked 
  • Drinking water and/or eating some food together
  • Cuddling with one another
  • Doing another activity you enjoy together, like watching a fun show or listening to music

If you don’t have a ton of time, don’t worry — aftercare can still be part of your sex life (yes, even when the kids will wake up soon or dinner is in the oven). Wipe each other down, help each other get dressed, and spend even just a short moment together before getting back to the hustle and bustle of life. 

Add something new to your aftercare routine 

Visit us in-store or online to find something new to add to your aftercare routine, like massage oils to wind down. 

Once you make aftercare a part of your sexual experiences, you’ll never look back!

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