All the Non-Sexual Things That Make Us Horny

Instagram / @killerandasweetthang

Last night on “Married At First Sight Australia“, certified clinical sexologist Alessandra Rampolla took the brides and grooms for workshops, as a way of inducting them into Intimacy Week.

And, while some in the experiment seem to have qualms with intimacy — with a *certain* groom thinking he could even teach Rampolla a thing or two (the audacity!) — others’ minds were blown by the information they were receiving.

Something that stood out to me was a conversation had with the grooms about intimacy that doesn’t involve sex.

“Intimacy does not equate to sex,” Rampolla said in her workshop with the brides. “Sex is one part of intimacy, but it’s not the whole thing.”

“You can have sex with anyone at any time and feel nothing. The idea here is to have the sex add to what you’re feeling. It’s the feeling that comes from being intimate with somebody that’s going to nourish the relationship.”

The girls all nodded in agreeance — with bride Claire calling Rampolla a “queen” and expressing how much she needed the “empowering” reminder the importance of emotional connection in intimate relationships. The men, however, had a slightly different response.

“I sense a lot of tension, are you guys nervous?” Rampolla asked the group of awkward and gobsmacked-looking grooms.

“We’re chill,” they kind of all said, unconvincingly.

“What are the best places to touch a woman, to really turn her on?” Rampolla posed.

The grooms started answering, calling out things like “collarbone”, “neck”, “thigh”.

“The most important one, nobody has mentioned yet,” she encouraged them to keep thinking.

“In here,” she answered for them, motioning to her heart. “You get a warm fuzzy heart, you’re going to get a warm fuzzy body.”

Rampolla goes on to say that you really need to start with the way you treat, the way you speak, and the way you make your partner feel, in order to create meaningful, lasting and good intimacy.

With the responses paired together — the men being ignorant and uneducated about the non-sexual side of intimacy and the women forgetting about how much they need that emotional connection to feel horny — it’s clear that ideas around heterosexual intimacy cater more towards men than women.

“Sex is viewed in our culture through a masculine lens,” Melbourne-based sexologist, Laura Miano, said in an Instagram post over the weekend.

“Cis men often experience ‘sporadic desire’ while cis women often have more responsive desire — in response to things — and it got me thinking that actually maybe it’s because our culture through more that masc lens. Everything is just set up to meet men’s needs — which means they think their desire is more sporadic.”

Understanding how we perceive and experience desire through the way society is set up is a super thought-provoking journey. And, as Miano went on to question how our culture could change to be more in line with what makes women horny, I found myself thinking about all the non-sexual things that turn me on.

Because surely, if cis men had a better understanding of what turns women on, they’d do it — right? And that would mean better intimacy for all?

The “MAFS” grooms seemed eager to learn. Some were shocked and annoyed that they didn’t already have this information.

So, without further ado, here are non-sexual six things that women on my Instagram have confessed to being turned on by.

Emotional Maturity

Who doesn’t love an emotionally mature babe?

“Emotional maturity shows life experience and a willingness to grow and learn,” says Emma, a follower of mine on IG. “Emotionally mature men turn me on because I feel safe with them. Like, they have the capacity to see how I’m feeling and have conversations about it and it’s hot.”


“When someone does something for you, just because, it’s such a turn-on,” my friend Bree tells me. “It just shows that they’re empathetic and have space to give freely. It makes me all gooey inside.”


“There is no bigger turn-off than someone being rude to their mum or the staff at a restaurant,” another follower, Grace, tells me. “Being polite and respectful to other people is kind of a bare minimum thing, but if they do with extra care and if they’re consistent, it’s such a turn on for me. I think because it’s actually quite rare, too.”

Someone Who Puts an Effort Into Their Outfit

“This might sound superficial, but I love a man who puts an effort into how he looks,” says Jani, popping up in my Instagram DMs.

“If his shirt is ironed and he’s wearing a well-put-together outfit, I just think it shows that he cares for himself, which is so important and also a turn-on. Him caring for himself also usually means he’ll care for you.”

A Compliment Without Intention

You can tell when someone is giving you a compliment because they want something from you — whether that be a sexual favour or something else — vs. when they’re saying something nice just because.

“Compliments without intention are the best,” Alana, a babe in my DMs, says.

“They feel genuine and help to build trust.”

A Long Hug

Last night’s “MAFS” episode showed just how much a long hug can heal.

One of the experiments’ most conflicting couples so far, Jesse and Claire, undertook the hugging challenge — under the guise of Rampolla.

Not only did it bring the couple closer, and give them some trust and comfort back into their relationship — it also forced Jesse to realise that he does, in fact, have feelings for Claire.

He loved the hug so much, that he went back to give her a goodnight hug on his way to bed. IDK if it was just me, but it def seemed like they wanted to kiss, after such a long embrace.

Plus, I can’t count the number of times a good, comforting and giving hug has made me want to smooch the hugger in question. It’s a physical sign of safety and warmth — without the sex.

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