Swell’s theme for September is Recharge, Renew, Reset. It’s been a rough year, rife with uncertainty, but new seasons offer us a welcome moment to clear the air. How can we wipe the slate clean this month? How can we reset sexually, emotionally, physically, politically?
One of the easiest ways to reset your space for better sex and intimacy is with a deep clean using eco-friendly cleaning supplies creatively. We think about the surfaces, at every height and in every room, that could be integrated into our next fantasy—once you clean the top of the fridge, you might just get frisky enough to make your way up there. But how can we go beyond cleaning to reset our homes and invite a more satisfying season of sex, self-love, and sensuality? Here are a few ways to manage our interiors to get the mood right in every room.
Climate controls like blasting heat and extra layers usually lead to dry skin, even warmer regions. This makes autumn a great time to replace light lotions with heavier creams like whipped shea butter. I also switch my floral fragrance oils and deodorants to more spiced, musky, and wooded scents, alluring for every gender. But once the products are in order, there’s something extra special about the way a warm towel can wrap you in bliss after the winds have whipped you around outside. Look to install a towel warmer for energy-efficient spa vibes at home – or put a fresh coat of high-heat paint on your pre-war radiator to serve the same purpose.
Frame Those Nudes
Visiting a friend’s house this summer, I recognized that bringing tasteful nudes and semi-erotic art into intimate spaces like bedrooms and bathrooms can be a lovely way to signal shamelessness and celebrate the sensuality of the human form. Look for extreme close-ups, abstractions, or unrecognizable photography subjects if this feels too provocative for you at first.
Beds That Love You Back
When you’re ready to shake the sheets, go big and just replace your oldest set with touchable textures like flannel or organic linen. My DIY folx will have fun finding fabric dye to refresh your softest bedding, but keep in mind that colors like warm green, lavender, and dark blue will complement winter skin tones in every shade. If you tend to overheat with heavy bedding, invest in cooling eucalyptus sheets before the heat comes on.
Mirrors Should Reveal, Not Just Reflect
I was raised by a world-renowned architect, and this is one of his design tips that always resonated with me: “Mirrors should reveal, not just reflect.” It’s a concept that asks us to consider the ways to show what is right around the bend. For example, hang a mirror that allows you to keep a wandering eye on your partner sizzling in the kitchen while you watch P-Valley from the next room. With daylight becoming more limited, reconfigure a well-placed mirror to bounce a golden hour sunbeam on to your favorite FaceTime perch.
When it comes to the kitchen, naturally I encourage you to invest in some aphrodisiac recipes and natural electrolytes to stay hydrated and keep the blood flowing through the season’s change. But also reset your kitchen supplies so your summer nights dining al fresco can become late-night tea time on a starry rooftop or breakfast in bed. Look for vintage serving trays to enliven any lazy morning with a special aphrodisiac delivery from the kitchen. And next time you’re getting groceries, grab a few disposable paper cups for hot drinks to make their way outside. You can still enjoy that homemade matcha latte in a to-go cup as you scramble out the door after a morning quickie.
Make an Entrance
In your entrance, consider making extra space for the boot swap to slippers. Not just a Mister Rogers move, the shoe swap keeps street gunk off your floors, making both hardwood floors and rugs more inviting for a romp.
If it hasn’t already become part of your 2020 regimen, deep clean your floors once a week…and get down on it every now and then! Keep a sheet, towel, or a washable blanket handy for even easier clean up after a self-love session or lusty encounter. Without the subconscious anticipation of soiling the bed or ruining the upholstery, we can diminish our inhibitions to squirt or have more fun making a mess with sticky aphrodisiacs like honey or chocolate sauce.
Occasionally dedicate a couple of oversized pillows or an especially fluffy blanket to the creation of a cuddle puddle. This way, when your love connection puts you on your knees, you’ll be ready to drop down with something plush already underfoot. Even if you live alone, building this deconstructed pillow fort can be an offering to snuggle your inner child. Large pillows can also serve as magnificent bolsters for a deeply calming yin yoga practice or relaxing bedtime ritual on the floor or in bed.
Let Go of the Laptop
There’s a certain sapiosexual healing that comes from co-working toe to toe with someone you adore, but be sure you have a safe place to disconnect from your devices once the workday ends. Make space for your partner’s laptop on an end table or add an extra phone-charging station to help an overworked partner feel seen at the end of a busy week.
Stank You Smelly Much
With the heat blasting and our feet wrapped for outdoor weather, remember that sweaty socks plus dirty floors lead to smelly shoes. Swapping to an indoor-only slipper will prevent you from stepping in spills and keep bits of bacteria from landing on your tender toes. If you prefer socks inside, remember that keeping your socks clean will save you the buzzkill of smelly feet.
Finally, reset your crusty, old alarm with something a little more comforting since the sky is more likely to be dark when this bell sounds in a few months. Gentle wooden windchimes or a breathy flute song could be a nice way to start a cool, misty morning. Ask yourself what artists, genres and instruments feel cozy, and find a track to ease your way out of the fifth dimension.