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How To Feel Sexy

How to Feel Sexy

Historically, the pressure to have a “perfect” body has been mostly put on women. More recently however, it has become relentless for both women and men. So how can you feel sexy in your skin with all these pressures around body image? We’ll show you.

What Influences Body Image? 

To sell as many products as possible, marketing experts have to come up with ever more ways to make people feel self-conscious and ashamed about body differences.

Airbrushing, endless layers of make-up, and selecting models and actors based on body type have exacerbated the problem. As a result, our society leaves very little room for acceptable bodies outside of cultural standards. This can have damaging impacts on all genders. 

Women’s Body Image Through the Ages

Women’s bodies have been governed in numerous ways throughout history. Body image has unequivocally fallen under that governance. Looking back over the past 100 years, we find countless ads, targeted merchandise, and deeply-rooted social pressures to look a specific way.

Sexist ads throughout the ages show how they have shaped women’s body image.

This leaves very little room for genetic differences, or body fluctuations due to childbirth, hormonal shifts, or just growing up. The expectation for a woman to look the same during every stage of her life has imbued her with extreme pressures.

Women are required to be sexy. They are supposed to have plump breasts, small waists, flat tummies, voluptuous hips, and bouncy behinds. The pressure is so great that millions of young girls and women have chemically or surgically altered their bodies. Others have committed their lives to the gym or calorie deprivation. All of this effort – just to mirror magazine covers, plastered with images of airbrushed women who don’t even look real.

The recent movements of combatting fatphobia, using plus size models or real women in advertising, and publicly displaying stretch marks have kindled a new awareness of the reality of women’s bodies. 

The ‘Real Beauty’ Dove Campaign introduced real women (and their bodies) to the world of advertising in 2004

What About Men’s Body Image?

Men deal with a different set of body image issues. Because society tells them they are supposed to be the big, strong providers, they are constantly nudged to have bigger muscles and larger penises. This pressure can result in men spending much of their lives lifting weights and consuming astronomical levels of protein. They feel inadequate if they can’t match an underwear model’s level of fitness.

Calvin Klein ads – like these featuring a young Mark Wahlberg – have contributed to men’s decreased self confidence.

Since almost all men watch porn – and porn star penises mostly range from larger-than-average to enormous – many men are self-conscious about their own penis size. They fear being rejected by partners if they are too small – even when they have average or larger-than-average penises. This can cause shyness and diminished sexual confidence.

Men have been made to feel self conscious around hair loss and baldness too. The industry of hair regrowth and hair follicle surgery specifically target men, charging them thousands of dollars to regain their youthful locks. More recently, men are also pressured around traditionally female body image issues like skin blemishes, weight, and wrinkles. 

The Effects of a Negative Body Image

The effects of a negative body image can be severe and penetrate many areas of your life. Feeling uncomfortable in our own skin inhibits your ability to walk confidently in every area of your life.

The following body image statistics were taken from an article on DoSomething.org

How to Improve Your Body Image

So how do you improve your body image and feel sexy in your skin? Try this simple exercise at home.

Stand in front of a mirror, either naked or with clothes on. Identify a favorite part of your body and place your hands on it. Speaking out loud, name all of your favorite things about this body part while sending it love and gratitude.

Move to your next favorite part of your body and send it the same amount of praise, gratitude, and love. Do this until you reach the least favorite part of your body and offer it as much love and compassion as feels natural. If this feels impossible, simply say “Thank you.”

Try this exercise regularly until you start to notice a shift. You may find it getting easier each time you do it. Speaking kindly to your least favorite parts though might become second nature! Share this exercise with loved ones if they want to know how to improve body image as well.

How to Feel Sexy and Sexually Confident

We have been socialized to consider ourselves less than attractive if we don’t meet societal standards. Porn, movies, and social media bombard us with imagery to adhere to if we want to be sexually desirable. They also dictate what sex should look like.

But there are things you can do to become more confident and feel sexy. Try the following exercises to accept your sexy body, just as it is. You may find that learning how to feel sexually confident can be a lot of fun! 

  1. Meditate and journal on your sexual fantasies and preferences. Imagine colors, sensations, and sounds. Consider what you really want to feel during a sexual experience. Have fun with this!
  2. Once you are clear on your vision, imagine yourself carrying out your fantasy in the body you have right now. Check yourself out. Marvel at your body. Imagine yourself in incredible pleasure. Imagine your partner complimenting you and reveling in your sexiness. Reassure yourself that your body is sexy and beautiful right now. Imagine feeling confident and sensual. Imagine your self-consciousness melting away and replaced with sexual power and energy. 

Once you’ve completed this exercise as many times as you feel is necessary, have a candid conversation with your partner about recreating your sexual fantasies. If they consent, you’ve already had a mental dress rehearsal for your bold, confident, alive sexual self to come out and play! 

Remember, no matter what body you have – you are sexy. The best thing you can do for your confidence is not to alter your image, but to fully accept it as beautiful. Love your body, no matter what. Compassion can turn into confidence. Kindness can turn into self love. And visualization can turn into full sexy embodiment! 

how to feel sexually confident

How a Sex Coach Can Help

If you are thinking of doing some body image therapy or finding a body image therapist, you might want to consider working with an experiential sex and relationship coach.

Because body image improvement often comes with learning to more fully inhabit and express yourself – including sexually -working with a sex coach can help fast-track your body image recovery.

Another option is a body image coach. Just make sure when you talk with them that they are also sex-positive and comfortable with sexual topics. Body image issues can really block you from your full sexual expression.

Ready to find a sex coach? Find one near you, or by specialization.