India's Coolest Women Tell You What They Know About Sex

Five confident, fabulous women, and five glorious essays on having an amazing time in bed.

Ah, sex. At Cosmo, we've talked a great deal about it, with one mission in mind-for women to be able to openly discuss this 'taboo' topic, and for you to have the kind of toe-curling nookie you deserve! So for our coming-of-age issue (at 18, we're legally adults now!) we decided to turn to some of India's coolest, most empowered women- 'What would you like to tell the Cosmo girl about having great sex?' Here's what they came back with...

Shobhaa De

COLUMNIST & AUTHOR

"What do I know about sex? Alarmingly little. Or way too much. It's all about perspective. We are born sexually aware creatures. Gradually, society's conditioning makes sure we 'control' our sexualfeelings-particularly as little girls. Adults believe they are protecting us from getting into trouble-hurting ourselves, hurting others. But the truth is, it's society protecting itself from responsibility and care. The bogey of unwanted pregnancies is used to instill fear in women-the fear of sex, the fear of enjoyment. And it's this fear that colours so many aspects of our adult lives later. When sex is equated with fear, you kill all pleasure. In our society, a woman expressing an uninhibited interest in exploring her own sexuality is branded a 'loose woman'. Generations have grown up thinking of sex as something evil, something to be ashamed of. By isolating sex as nothing more than a dirty physical act, we have degraded and de-valued it. This is such a pity! Sex has to be enjoyed in a more holistic way...at every level-physical, emotional and spiritual. Experts teach us how to work on special techniques to enhance the physical experience. Very few bother to highlight the other, more vital aspects of appreciating sex and sensuality. Aspects that involve all the senses. Good sex does not begin and end with an orgasm. It is the coming together of countless textures, tastes, smells, touches...and more importantly, emotions and memories. Let's just say one lifetime is not enough."

Nonita Kalra

COLUMNIST & FASHION COMMENTATOR

"I moved cities. Away from the weight of my conditioning, and discovered that good girls do it. My first home was a working women's hostel, and most evenings ended up with a bunch of us gathering after a night out- discussing our sexual adventures. They ranged from one night stands sans guilt, to sex in public places, to being cheated on, to a discussion on the boy who couldn't get it up. Away from it all, I learnt that we wanted it as much as men. No wait, we want it more. Because we denied ourselves longer. I believed I was building character. And strong moral fibre. If self flagellation is what was required to fit in, so be it. I took this confusion with me into my 20s. Holding onto my virginity like some strange badge of honour. Until my world collided with freedom. I moved away from home, to

Bombay. To a working women's hostel. Occupied by these strange goddesses who had sampled sex and spoke about it with a frankness that made me blush. At first, I just gazed upon them with awe. Then very quickly, I became one of them. You see, we all had one thing in common: we were re-inventing ourselves and the first thing we chose to fix was our sex lives. Because all along we knew one thing. We wanted it as much as men. Exactly like men. Erica Jong's "Zipless F*ck" (Immortalised in her 1973 novel Fear Of Flying) became our user manual. Erotica, a vital part of a library. And sexual adventures our aperitivo. Our sexual history checklist ran a bit like this: one night stands. Check. Sex in public places. Check. Experiments with the same sex. Check. Committed sex, casual

sex. Check, check. Instructions from the Kamasutra. Ouch. I embraced my sexuality wholeheartedly and headlong. So much so, that for a short while, I was the agony uncle for a sex column, online. And yes, I wrote fairly good smut under a nom de plume. The female body is designed for pleasure. After all, the clitoral head alone has 8,000 nerve endings. Double what men have in the organ that controls them."

Sandhya Moolchandani

AUTHOR, KAMASUTRA FOR WOMEN

"When asked to do a book on the Kamasutra for women, I was hesitant. Barring a few nervous giggles looking at the pictures as a teenager, I'd not read the book. I'm not alone, most people regard it as a prurient book about impossible sexual positions, more a lark than anything useful or practical. But when I sat down to go through the terse aphorisms, I found to my surprise that much of the book is not about sex at all. Rather a very detailed and astute exploration of human behaviour and sexuality which is quite different from the act itself. The lessons for better sex have reall ynothing to do with sex at all, rather about connectedness, commitment and conversation, about selflessness and friendship, about harmony, attention and communication. Seeking sexual pleasure is not just good, but something to be actively sought. There is an art to love and sex for sexual prowess too is something that has to be carefully cultivated and learnt. After all, relationships cannot be fulfilling if they're lopsided. It does take two to tango, so while men were taught to pay attention to their appearance and manners, and techniques to pleasure their lovers, women too were taught the arts to please and be pleasured, to love and in turn be loved, for then, says Vatsayayana, does a relationship even qualify as a relationship. More than modern for something written 1700 years ago. Especially today when sensuality has become such a distant memory."

Dr Reenu Jain

GYNAECOLOGIST

"Great sex has a lot to do with science. For instance, men and women are attracted to each other thanks to  chemical messengers called  pheromones. These are arousal stimulating chemicals that signal sexual desire, hormone levels, and fertility. When released by the body, certain pheromones can work like magic to attract members of the opposite sex. I also know a little help in the bedroom department can make a big difference. For instance, if sex hurts, a water-based lubricant can ease the pain. Doctors also recommend the woman-on-top position, as it lets you control the pace and movement according to your comfort. And if you're trying to have a baby, experts recommend the missionary position, with a pelvic tilt.  Put a pillow under the pelvis to help elevate it and create a slide effect - providing an easy path for sperms to travel through the cervix."

Dr Amrita Narayanan

PSYCHOLOGIST

"Of the many things you can do for your sex life, knowing yourself is perhaps the most important. Research on sexual health tells us that masturbation is an important milestone to sexual development, yet worldwide, women masturbate less than men. In India, research tells us that the majority of Indian women do not even have words for their sexual body parts. Masturbation generates self awareness. Women who are experts on their own bodies can maximise their pleasure as well as their partner's, and feel empowered enough to ask for what they want during sex. Solo sex gives us a fuller understanding of the fantasies we find appealing. Plus, masturbation can tell us what puts our bodies on the merry road to orgasm, as well as what are the interesting pit stops we would like to make on that route. While you're at it, it also helps to ask yourself some Qs: 'What makes me wet?'; 'How wet do I like to get before I feel comfortable inserting my fingers?';'Where is my clitoris located?' Remember, every woman is different, so when it comes to what turns you on, there are no wrong answers."

HAVE GREAT SEX NOW!

Some fun, kinky ideas that promise a damn good time...

1. Keep Oh-So Quiet Not being allowed to make any noise can be a huge turn-on. Stuff his tie into his mouth, then do dirty things to him until he's digging his nails into his palms to keep from ripping that gag out.

2. Be Dirty While Getting Clean

The shower is practically made for the quickie. The ideal position for you is bent over, aiming the shower head at your hot spot while he's doing his thing from behind.

3. Evoke His Blind Ambition

You wake up with 2.5 minutes to spare before your alarm rings. Rip off the cami you slept in, and tie it over his eyes. Now you can spin a fantasy using only words. Cue- 'Everyone is watching us going...'

4. Rev Your Engine

When he takes you out for a fancy occasion, park the car at the most underground point in the garage. Then straddle him while he's still buckled up.

5. Use the Tools of Another Trade

A spatula in the kitchen can be used to swat a naughty bum. A hairbrush can be used to stroke his chest and thighs. The key is to get creative with your arsenal.

AND THE STUFF YOU DON'T know about sex!

We bet you didn't know this fascinating, sexy and useful info! Your breasts can swell up to 25 percent when you're aroused, making them supersensitive.

News to celebrate: a woman's odds of climaxing every time increase as she ages.

The average speed of a guy's ejaculation is 45kmph. Um, wow.

It's possible for a guy to orgasm and not ejaculate. So if you don't see the, uh, evidence, it doesn't mean he's faking it.

The clitoris has about 8,000 nerve endings and it doesn't stop growing. By the time you're 32, your clitoris is four times larger than puberty.

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