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For the shopaholics among us, a day spent browsing through sale rails and shoe aisles is a day well spent.

That warm fuzzy feeling you get when you finally decided to splurge on that over-priced (but oh so worth it) winter coat can be hard to explain – but scientists reckon they have found the answer.

Research conducted by tech company, MyndPlay, found a direct link between shopping and a state of pure and utter bliss.

For the study, participants were divided into two categories – 'Inspired' and 'Shop-y-cats'.

The first group were those who genuinely enjoyed to shop, while the latter were those who only did it in order to fit in with the crowd.

Anaylisis of both group's 'gamma brainwaves' showed that a massive 84 per cent of Inspired shoppers experienced a feeling of elation, or 'buyers' high', at the till, which then lasted for some time after.

According to The Sun, the feeling can be compared to the pleasure derived from engaging in sexual activity, or a Formula 1 driver finishing a race.

Most Shop-y-cat shoppers also experience a momentary high, though it did not last nearly as long.

What's more, over 80 per cent of this group saw their mental fatigue rise by up to 30 per cent, every 10 minutes they spent shopping.

Rob Hattrell, Vice President of eBay UK, told The Sun: “Shopping is personal. It’s  a reflection of what makes you, you.”

“This fascinating research gives great insight into the highs that can be achieved when you hit the zone of inspiration and shop like nobody else.”

So basically, it all comes down to being in 'the zone'.

Happy shopping, ladies! 

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When it comes to spending a bit of time between the sheets with our partner of choice, there are usually a few things we're comfortable with. 

Whether that's indulging in a particular kink, or that fool proof I'm-definitely-going-to-come-from-this position, we know what we like. 

However, a recent study found that people avoid particular positions due to personal insecurities. 

When we're not feeling body confident or have performance anxiety, the position of choice can have a lot to do with it. 

Holding Back In Bed by Zava Med polled over 1,000 sexually active people about what made them uncomfortable during sex, and compiled a list of sex positions we're not into. 

Women were most turned off by 69-ing, while men cited standing up sex as their most avoided position. 

69-ing came a close second for men, with one quarter of men avoiding it.

With more than half of men and women feeling insecure about how their genitals look, it makes sense that this position can evoke anxiety for some. 

A further 20% of men bypass the Doggy style position, and the Kneeling wheelbarrow (we had to Google that one) was 19% of guy's performance Achille's heel. 

The results showed that partner-facing positions were avoided twice as often as positions where partners faced away from each other when one party involved felt insecure.

Women mostly avoided Reverse Cowgirl, Cowgirl and the Kneeling Wheelbarrow after 69-ing. 

While 69-ing was cited as the most uncomfortable position for insecure partners, the study found that 'sexual acts that focus on oral sex like 69 can actually help improve intimacy and communication between partners.'

The more you know…

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Getting bored of the same 'ole carry on in the bedroom? It might be time to step outside of your comfort zone and discover the wonders that lay beyond the boudoir. 

New research claims that having sex in places around the house can help boost relationship satisfaction and overall happiness. 

The team at House Method asked 1,000 people about their favourite places to get down to business. 

Results showed that couples who have sex outside the bedroom boast 10.5 per cent greater relationship satisfaction, while 33 per cent were more satisfied with their sex lives. 

Rather unsurprisingly, the living room proved to be the most popular non-bedroom location for couples to get freaky, closely followed by the bathroom.  

Attics, closets and gardens were the least preferred spots, which is hardly surprising, really. 

What's more, it seems that couple who enjoy sex outside the bedroom actually have more sex in general, averaging at 10.9 times a month, compared to just 5.8 times for bedroom-only couples. 

Of course, depending on your living situation, non-bedroom sex isn't always an option. 

All of the people who participated in the survey lived with their significant other – making it 100 times easier to have sex when and where you want to.   

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Female masturbation has long faced stigma, yet male masturbation is socially accepted as normal, and even healthy. Yet the advantages and benefits of self-pleasure for women can be easily overlooked.

A new study by TENGA took a dive into the world of self-lovin', and highlighted the impacts it has on everyone around the globe. 

The sex toy company surveyed 10,000 people from nine different countries worldwide to investigate how much masturbation has impacted their lives. The result? It's pretty damn important to people.

According to the results, 91 percent of people in the United Kingdom indulge in masturbation, or have at one point or another. That's around 60 million people, which is impressive.

Unfortunately the survey didn't use Irish people as participants, but we reckon the UK is close enough of an indicator.

When the surveyed population were asked why they masturbate, they responded with three dominant reasons; to satisfy their horniness, to achieve sexual pleasure or to relax/relieve stress.

Other reasons were boredom, to help them sleep, to give them body confidence, to become a better sexual partner or because their partner didn't want to have sex with them at the time.

Other research showed that British men and LGBTQ+ are more likely than other group to masturbate, and men and younger generations tend to start younger – around the age of 13.

93 percent of men said that they had masturbated before, while 88 percent of women claimed to have indulged themselves in self-pleasure before. Women tended to start at the later age of 15.

The stereotype is that women don't masturbate as much as men, but science has disproved this on multiple occasions. Girls love self-love, face the pleasurable facts.

Women who currently use a sex toy were found to be more satisfied with almost every aspect of their sex lives than women who don’t – especially when it comes to quality of masturbation and frequency of orgasm.

When asked how often they masturbate, 61 percent of British participants confirmed they do it at least weekly – a greater share than in almost every other country surveyed. 

Those UK people surveyed said that they are horniest in the month of July (summer lovin'), touch themselves most between 7:30 – 11:30 p.m. and, normally take to their bedrooms to do it.

Sexual therapists and health experts agree that masturbation has many benefits, including letting go of sexual shame, better sex, improved body image and a stronger libido. It also releases stress-reducing endorphins in women. 

64 percent of Brits surveyed consider masturbation to be a form of self care or therapy, and 52 percent think it impacts wellness or state-of-mind.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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While men tend to orgasm all or most of the time, women are significantly less likely to orgasm as frequently.

Nearly 80-90 percent of people find masturbation to have a positive effect across most aspects of their lives, including their mood, health, energy and productivity levels, and their relationships.

Among the 41 percent of Brits who have regular masturbation routines, men usually watch porn but women prefer to use their imaginations. Interestingly, British fantasise about previous partners more often than their current one. Hmm…

Finally, when asked what celebrities were fantasised about, the most common answers were Jennifer Lawrence, Tom Hardy, Mia Khalifa, Christian Grey, Johnny Depp and Emma Watson.

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When you think about it, four out of the six characters on Friends, who all pretty much co-habited with each other, also slept together.

So it doesn't come as much of a surprise that women would get hot and heavy with their opposite-sex flatmates.

According to a study, most people would rather live with members of the opposite sex – a whopping 68% of men and 63% of women. 

We wonder why.

When it comes to going through a dry spell, the study showed that 74% of men vs. 57% of women aren’t opposed to pursuing a romantic relationship with their flatmate. 

Looks like people aren't so mad about living alone.

It seems that fancying the people that you're living with is also common 74% of men and 57% of women thinking that their roommate is a ride. 

Also, 1 in 3 people has had a sexual encounter with their roommate. 

Have you?

Or have you ever been tempted?

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If you've ever got freaky in the sheets and accidentally took an elbow to the eye – don't fear, you're not alone.

Though it can absolutely murder the mood and you're left completely mortified, amorous accidents and mishaps are more common than you think. 

So you can stop blushing as 99 percent of participates in a recent Superdrug Online Doctor survey said during sexy sessions, they've experienced some sort of misery in this department.

It may not surprise you that the most common form of misfortune was bumping heads with one's partner – I'll go get the ice.

Out of the 800 people quizzed, 45 percent of men and women said they've taken a tumble out of the bed mid-session – although this could be down to overenthusiasm – take it easy lads. 

Onto some of the weird and wonderful ones, almost 12 percent of women and 8 percent of men accidentally vomited during sex – delightful.

Whilst 13 percents of both sexes reported wetting themselves when getting it on – if this does happen, make sure your mum isn't the one washing the sheets.

via GIPHY

Although it can end in tears or laughter – it seems we aren't too proud of ourselves when it comes to coughing up the truth to our doc.

The survey found that we will lie and create all kinds of tales to avoid telling the doctor that we injured ourselves getting the ride.

But how are we sustaining these accidents? Turns out we are uncoordinated messes – well almost half of us are.

Almost half of women who were surveyed said it was down to their lack of coordination, while 35.5 percent of men blamed the same problem. 

Lack of flexibility came in as second, with a quarter of women saying it was a reason for really awkward sex – so stop trying to push our legs over our head, thanks. 

For men, nearly 20 percent of them said lack of stamina and endurance was the culprit for the cricket silence. 

So do we learn from our mistakes and does awkward sex make us more cautious for future lovemaking marathons? – Yes, my friends, they do. 

29 percent said they avoided 69 standing up position like the plague after a previous failed attempt.

Others were less athletic, but they all shared something in common – penetration from behind.

Doggy style, reverse cowgirl, and the kneeling wheelbarrow each made the top five on the list of banished positions. 

Moving to those sexy locations, while it seems steamy in the movies, if you've ever attempted this in the real world – you know the results are far from the Hollywood glam.

Cue the awkward moments, positions and generally just being uncomfortable AF. 

So it comes as no surprise that 27 percent who got their wings in the mile-high club said they wouldn't repeat the experience – have you seen the size of those loos? Just no.

No one wants to see their neighbours going at it – no matter how hot you think you are and a quarter of people thankfully said they wouldn't get it on in a public patio or back garden again. 

Additionally, cemeteries made the list of awkward locations to avoid, as well as the ocean and the shower.

We don't have a solution to eliminate those "I wish the ground would open and swallow me whole" situations.

But I hope you can relate to these saucy encounters to realise that awkwardness is all apart of life – including sex. 

Let's hope the next time you can get laugh it off and get back at it.

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Sexual fantasies might sound slightly taboo but it turns out that there are some pretty unexpected things going on in your partner's mind.

And it's not all threesomes and sex with an ex, we were shocked to discover. 

A study carried out by Superdrug Online Doctor found out that men's fantasies are emotional as well as physical – who knew, huh?

And it seems that those sexy daydreams aren't doing any damage to your relationships as 4 in 5 of those who do fantasise consider themselves either satisfied or very satisfied with their partner. 

While fantasising about sex is obvs up there for both men and women, we're also thinking about more innocent hanky panky such as cuddling and kissing. 

Yes, 16.8% and 29.7% of men respectively fantasied about cuddling and kissing. 

The figures show that women are 30% more likely to fantasise about kissing than men but men are 7% more likely to fantasise about sex…not too shocking tbh.

And sharing is deffo caring or so the stats say as it shows that those who share their fantasies with their partner are 13% more satisfied with their sex lives – get sharing, lads. 

So, lets get down to the nitty gritty – who are these people in our fantasies? 

The results show that fantasies usually involve an ex, a friend or a stranger but more often a stranger. 

Men were more likely to think of an ex or a friend while women opted for the stranger.

Interesting, right?

Do you think sexual fantasies are okay and if so, would you talk about them with your partner? 

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We all know how wrecked you feel after a long day at the office. 

All you want is to take your bra off and get into bed to watch Netflix.

Some people adore their sleep – but what if you love sex too?

Could you give up your snoozing for getting it on? 

A study was carried out by Mattress Advisor, who surveyed people about their sleep and sex habits.

And what did they say?

Single people get more shut-eye and those in relationships have sex nearly three times more per month. 

People were happy to give up 54.3 minutes of sleep to have sex.

And even after an exhausting day, 84 percent of people would give up z's for a night-time romp. 

People in relationships were intimate an average of 8.7 days per month and they had an average of 7.7 hours of sleep per month. 

Single people slept 7.1 hours per night and had sex 6.2 days per month. 

It might seem like only 12 more minutes of sleep, but that adds up to almost an hour and a half of sleep during the week. 

So it seems the better the sex life, the better quality of sleep people get – like we needed an excuse, right?

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Moving in together is a big step.

Yeah, it's exciting and the thoughts of having your own place with the person you're mad about sounds fab but think of it realistically.

All privacy is gone and you no longer even have your own personal space, your own bedroom. 

So what about…separate rooms?

It might not be as horrifying as it sounds as a survey of 2,000 couples suggests that sleeping apart could lead to better quality sex.

The research found that four in ten couples sleep apart most nights, and that of these, 34% claim they have better quality sex and more of it, while 38% say that sleeping apart improved their relationship.

Sounds great to us.

So what were the reasons for not sleeping together? 

They included different sleep cycles, their partner moving around too much in bed, having different shift patterns, and snoring. 

A good night’s sleep can help our sex lives, as it increases sexual desire and pleasure so separate beds might do the trick. 

Now it can reduce opportunities for intimacy – 24% of those who slept separately said they had sex less frequently as a result.

So to ensure sexy time stay near the top of the list, schedule sex or just making time for skin-to-skin contact during the day to replace the late-night spooning.

Mind coach Anna Williamson told Metro, ''If your partner is restless in the night, perhaps they snore or breathe heavily, and as a result, keep you awake or disturb you throughout the night, it can be a good idea to sleep apart from your partner in order to catch up on some much-needed sleep.''

She continued, ''Physical contact is essential in keeping a relationship connected. Touching each other releases feel good, love endorphins, and often being in bed can be the best time of the day to communicate effectively with each other. Pillow talk is a really emotionally positive thing to do and it can help you feel safe and secure as you both hopefully drop off to sleep together.''

So why not try it out and see if it works for you and your partner?

Yo never know, it could be the spark to lit both your fires…

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Science has upped it's game.

Most researchers seem to be pretty busy with conducting medical studies and making valuable scientific discoveries for society's gain, but this latest survey really takes it to the next level.

Bloom & Wild have worked with London Metropolitan University to undergo an experiment to figure out when the 'love hormone', AKA oxytocin, is released.

The anti-anxiety and stress reducing hormone is pretty special, the chemicals are made when you're in love, and having some KICK-ASS sex. We heart it. 

The study measured how the brain reacts to receiving certain gifts, and it's led to some pretty interesting, and useful, results. We're not hugely surprised at what topped the list, they're all unreal.

Research also suggests that people in the first three stages of love reported higher oxytocin levels that last for roughly six months to a year. At a chemical level, can presents recreate this high of lovestruck heartbeats?

Scientists reported that the subjects of the study showed an average increase of 73pg/ml in the hormone oxytocin after getting chocolates, and 62pg/ml after receiving flowers. Feeling loved comes in all shapes and sizes, it would seem.

The official top five items or experiences included on the list which trumped having sex were; chocolate winning the number one spot, then flowers, food, shopping and booking a holiday.

Receiving chocolate apparently creates a high increase in oxytocin the same rise in oxytocin comes from sex, so a quick nip down to Butlers could solve your stress issues. 

Flowers can spark the same feeling as love, relationships and sexy times, and a study by Havas Worldwide revealed that 57 percent of millennials think that food is better than sex. Damn.

hungry jennifer lawrence GIF

Retail therapy also made the list, according to the experiment. The neurologist David Linden, in his book The Compass Of Pleasure, explains that the experience of shopping triggers dopamine circuitry in the brain's mesolimbic pathway.

In plain-old-English, the mesolimbic pathway is a key part of how we experience entertainment and happiness, so having a sneaky online shop at ASOS is good for you. Thank God we have a valid excuse to do this now…

Booking a holiday is better than having some intimate. alone time with a partner, according to research. 16% of Brits claim to support this, so those Aer Lingus January sales must have had people feelin' pretty damn euphoric.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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To carry out their research, Bloom & Wild and London Metropolitan University split 30 volunteers into three groups.

Each were to receive a gift of flowers, chocolate, or water, and took saliva samples before the gift arrived, and then again 10 minutes after delivery, and finally 40 minutes after receiving the gift. 

It just goes to show, chocolate should always be cherished. We're in a loving relationship with Cadbury's Dairy Milk, and there are zero signs of a break-up coming our way.

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We all have our favourite ways to enhance our experience between-the-sheets but can our own personality type play a role in our sex life?

A  study looked at 16 personality types and compared feedback from 1,000 people to see how our personalities impact how we are in bed.

Ready to see the results?

Extroverted personalities including ENTP, ENTJ, and ENFP are the most willing to try new sexual scenarios including anal, bondage, or same-sex encounters.

Unsurprising.

Sex positions like doggystyle and reverse cowgirl were popular among extroverts while introverts like ISFPs prefer 69 and ISTJs like spooning.

Also, extroverts are 11% more likely to be satisfied in bed than introverts with ESTJs being the most easily satisfied (81%) and INFPs being the hardest to satisfy (60%)

When it came to being vocal in the bedroom, people who identified as ISTJ (the Logistician) were the least likely to vocalise what they waned in bed.

According to the study, extroverts were 10 percent more adventurous than introverts in bed.

Getting to know what turns your partner in the bedroom is an important part of a relationship and can make your sex lives together so much better. 

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Workplace romance is becoming a little vintage, it would seem. Except less fashionable.

the office GIF

Just one-in-10 couples (11 percent) are now finding love in the workplace, according to a new report.

Nearly one-in-five romances in 1990 were forged at work, in comparison. Back in the day, things were clearly done differently.

They were also times when people stayed at the same job their entire lives though, and most likely met less people, seeing as travel options were less extensive.

The research was published in the latest 'How Couples Meet and Stay Together Study' from Stanford University.

Nichi Hodgson, author of The Curious History of Dating: From Jane Austen to Tinder, in an interview with Yahoo UK claims that striking up a relationship with a colleague is now “less sociably acceptable”.

Despite the fact that we're spending longer hours in the workplace, we are now more cautious than ever about a co-worker relationship turning into something romantic, according to Hodgson, due to the #MeToo movement.

The movement aims to tackle workplace sexual harassment and assault, and has been building since Tarana Burke started it back in 2006. It caught fire in 2017 after the Harvey Weinstein scandal broke.

Nichi Hodgeson claims that "workplace relationships need to be conducted very carefully to ensure there's no breach of company behavioural guidelines." I mean, it ain't that hard not to be a creep.

Hodgson also argues that we shouldn’t necessarily be disappointed by the end of the workplace romance:

“They don't necessarily show you someone's true colours – you won't see how tender or angry someone can be at work, for example, because the majority of people are on their best behaviour,” she says.

“Just because they're a good team player at work doesn't mean they necessarily will be in a relationship.”

season 2 flirting GIF by Blunt Talk

Online dating and apps like Tinder, Bumble, Hinge and OK Cupid are now taking the lead in bringing people together, with almost one-in-four (39 percent) of heterosexual couples meeting through those platforms.

This is an increase since 2009, when the stats showed 22 percent of hetero couples meeting online, according to the Stanford University findings.

Meeting through friends is still a popular means of finding your future partner, but it's much less common than it was in the past. Over a third (34 percent) of people met this way in 1990, but it’s now just one in five (20 percent)

“Dating apps may have only been around for a decade but they have a radical hold on our affections when it comes to meeting a partner, mainly because they are so convenient in our ever time-pressed lives,” Hodgson says.

the boss kiss GIF by Kim's Convenience

“They're not necessarily leading to better connections though for multiple reasons – they create a paradox of choice, giving us too many people to choose between when social scientists tell us we get cognitive overload somewhere between five and nine options," she continues.

“Dating apps are encouraging us to be ruder with behaviours,” Hodgson adds, which is due to a “lack of accountability needed from users”. Overall, Hodgson believes that dating apps can still lead to a stable, long-term match. 

“When we do finally choose a serious partner from a dating app, we are likely to stick with them – we are taking longer to settle on someone but that is producing more stable long-term matches when we finally commit.”

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