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24 Fresh Ways to Spice Up Your Marriage

Whether you have been married for three years or thirty years, you might wonder how you can add a little spice to your marriage.

Perhaps at first, your relationship with your partner was electric – outside and inside the bedroom. Over the years, you might have put romance on the back burner because life IS busy.

But so often, maintaining routines and schedules, raising children, and just dealing with daily responsibilities slowly extinguish the flames, and you find yourself in a romantic rut.

You love your partner, but the spark is long gone.

Can you relate to this scenario?

It’s the end of a long workday. Your kids are in bed after you enjoyed dinner as a family. The kitchen is clean, and you’ve picked up around the house.

You want to crawl into bed, but instead, you do the usual routine of turning on the TV, getting comfy on the couch, and scrolling on your phone.

You exchange a few words with your spouse—small talk. Things are comfortable, and there is really nothing wrong.

You look at your partner, and you think, “It’s been a while since we’ve had amazing sex. But I don’t really feel like it.”

You think of the usual complaints you hear from your partner: “We never have sex anymore!” “Maybe you aren’t attracted to me,” and “Sometimes I wonder if you’re seeing someone else because you’re not into me anymore!”

So, tonight you decide to get a little frisky, and you can tell your partner is getting into it.

But your mind begins to drift, and you start thinking about all the things you need to get done.

You are so tired and want to go to sleep. You start feeling like you just want to get it over with.

So, it ends up being a five-minute experience. You can check it off your to-do list, and your partner seems (somewhat) satisfied.

But if you’re really honest with yourself, it wasn’t great. It was a mechanical act that brought the two of you no closer.

Even when you’re lying beside each other, you can still feel the distance created by a fizzled sex life.

The above scenario is a situation that many married couples experience. You might not be bored with your spouse, but the passion and excitement fizzled long ago.

You know you want more, and you’re sure your partner also wants more. Neither of you is satisfied.

Perhaps you’ve always had different levels of sexual desire, but you genuinely want to spice up your marriage and have good (no, great!) sexual experiences with your spouse.

You want to feel the romance and excitement you felt when you first met. And you want your partner to love having sex with you, feel incredibly attracted to you, and look forward to connecting deeply with you!  

You’ll be happy to know that you can keep the sizzle and excitement alive.

You can do many things—big and small—to amp up your sex life and add spice to your marriage. But it’s up to you to make an effort.

Don’t allow work, children, household tasks, or anything else to get in the way of having fun in your marriage.

Like many things in life, your marriage requires attention and effort. You can make simple choices to fuel the passion and spice things up—in and out of the bedroom!

If your married life is feeling stale or boringread this article for ideas about how to reignite the spark in and out of the bedroom!

How to Spice up Your Marriage Outside the Bedroom

You might be surprised to learn that the little things you do outside the bedroom can also spice up your marriage. It isn’t just sex—here are some ideas to add fun and playfulness throughout the day.

1. Date.

Don’t just go on any old dinner date—spice things up by experiencing new and fun things together.

Most marriage counselors will tell you it’s essential to schedule date nights. If you don’t spend time with your spouse, you’ll likely grow apart and live separate lives!

You have probably heard about weekly date nights.

But what if you do something on a whim, just for fun?

If you can, do something spontaneous with your spouse every week! If you have children, drop them at a sitter’s or grandma’s house, dress up in something sexy, and go out.

Don’t just do a dinner and moviebe spontaneous and do something you wouldn’t normally do.

You might listen to live music, go on a wine stroll or carriage ride, tour a botanical garden, or go to a body painting class (yes, this is a thing!). Go to a drive-in movie and make out like teenagers.

Whatever you do, have fun!

2. “Meet” for the First Time.

For an adventurous date, choose a place to meet, show up separately, and “meet” as if you’re meeting for the first time. Pretend you are strangers.

This might seem impossible—especially if you’ve known your spouse for years—but it will be hot if you can pull it off!

If you’re uncomfortable with stranger role play, perhaps you’d like to play a part at home. Put on a costume and play out your partner’s fantasy.

Whatever you decide to do, keep it light and have fun.

3. Spice up Your Texts.

Sending flirty texts is sure to get your partner’s attention. Include a photo or video of yourself – if you’re brave enough!

Even though you’ve been with your partner a while, surprise them with naughty or romantic messages during the workday. 

Instead of saying, “Could you please pick up some milk on the way home,” add a flirtatious message. If you’re feeling bold, send a picture or brief video of yourself.

Maybe you’re uncomfortable with doing this, but it will get your partner’s attention!

4. Compliments Matter.

Do you tell your partner you love them every day?

That’s great, but you can step it up by complimenting your spouse when they don’t expect it or are having a rough day and need to hear it.

Say something that makes them feel special. 

You might say, “I love how sexy you look in the morning when preparing the kids’ breakfasts. You always make sure they have a nutritious meal before school.”

Showing your love and desire is necessary for an intimate marriage, so say how you feel by expressing appreciation.

5. Redefine Marriage.

Sometimes it’s important to remind yourself why you got married in the first place.

Marriage is more than a legal relationship or social institutionit’s love, support, friendship, respect, commitment, partnership, and a decision to live happily with another person.

Sometimes, happiness seems elusive, but you can always re-center yourself and focus on cultivating joy with your partner.

Because here’s the reality: if one partner isn’t happy, the marriage will falter if you don’t take the necessary steps to reclaim happiness.

Refresh your idea of what marriage is and what it should be.

6. Teasing.

Husband Whispering Flirtaciously
Try whispering something naughty in your partner’s ear in public! You’ll generate excitement and suspense – they look forward to finally getting you home.

Teasing can be done in many ways, including texting, whispering something naughty into your partner’s ear when you’re in public, or giving each other flirtatious looks.

If you forget how to flirt, read an article or book on the topic or Google it! Keeping things playful with your partner is sure to spice things up.

7. Look Into Your Spouse’s Eyes and Kiss.

Make deep eye contact and give your partner a deep and passionate kisslike you mean it! Kissing creates a connection.

Instead of a quick peck on the cheek, make your morning kiss spicy enough to leave your spouse thirsty for you all day.

8. Physical Touch.

Hold hands when you’re out and about, or lightly touch your spouse’s shoulder when talking. Rub your partner’s feet after a long day, or cuddle on the couch.

Physical affection is an easy way to feel closer to your partner, regardless of the gesture’s size.

Affectionate touch is an easy way to let your partner know you care.

9. Feel Good About Yourself.

You might have difficulty feeling attractive if you’re uncomfortable in your own skin. Eating healthy, de-stressing, and exercising will keep you looking and feeling great.

When you feel good about yourself, your confidence will shine through, and your partner will notice.

10. Court Your Partner.

Think back to those days when you were trying to win over your partner. There was probably flirting, lingering looks, love notes, dating, and lots of fun and playfulness.

Take a long look at your partner and remember those first feelings of desire. As you move through your day, recall those feelings and focus on seducing your partnereven if it’s simply with lingering looks.

How to Sexually Spice Things up in the Bedroom

Now that you’ve learned how to spice things up outside the bedroom, here are suggestions for heating things in the bedroom.

Think back to when you first started dating your partner.

Did you stay up late in bed talking?

Did you have trouble keeping your hands off one another?

Did it seem like all you did was have sex?!

But now romance might have taken a back seat to all the responsibilitiesand many nights, you both might fall into bed exhausted without a thought about sex.

Even though your wants, needs, and desires might differ from when you first got together, you can still keep things steamy in the bedroom with some effort.

1. Share Fantasies.

Whip Couple Fantasies
It can be scary to share your secret fantasies with your partner… but think about the fun experiences it could lead to!

Be vulnerable and share your fantasies. Ask your partner to share as well. Maybe you have had a fantasy for years and kept it to yourself. Unless it’s degrading or scary, tell your partner. 

Once you’ve shared your desires, try it by setting the sceneincluding the atmosphere, costumes, props, and anything else that will set the mood. 

You might need to set the stage in a hotel room, so hire a sitter and spend the night away from home.

Remember not to criticize your partner if their fantasies are a little shocking or different than what you’re used to—be open to trying something new and different from “vanilla” sex.

2. Surprise Your Partner.

Things have probably gotten relatively predictable if you’ve been with your partner for a while.

You probably know how your spouse will act in certain situations, react to different things, or behave when faced with different scenarios. There are no surprises.

So, try something unexpected to blow your partner’s mind. Suggest a sneaky quickie while the kids play outside, have sex in the kitchen, or place your hand in a particular place while you’re in public.

Do something unexpected that will thrill your spouse!

3. Build Suspense.

Tease your partner, then put sex off. Build tension and create anticipation by making your spouse wait for it.

If you are going out, put on a show. While you’re getting ready, tease your partner. Don’t let your partner touch you until you arrive home!

4. Talk Dirty.

You won’t believe how crucial dirty talk is in relationships.

Is your partner a verbal being who adores it when you express yourself in moments of pleasure?

Getting verbal during intimate moments can take your sex life to the next level.

5. Clear Your Schedules.

Couple Spending Time Together in Bed
Plan to spend a whole day “doing nothing” in bed together.

Lack of time spent together is one of the main reasons marriages fall apart.

Make sure you occasionally clear your schedules and spend the whole day together.

Do this while your kids are in school or drop them off at a sitter’s home for the day. Take it up a notch by spending the entire day in bed—naked. You probably won’t be able to take your hands off each other.

6. Play Games.

It doesn’t have to be a sexy game!

Choose something you both like, such as a pool, darts, bowling, or table tennis. Break a sweat, let off some steam, and compete.

It could also be something simple like a fun and new board game.

Not only will you have tons of fun, but the thrill and the excitement will probably follow you to the bedroom.

7. Give Each Other Massages.

When your partner is exhausted, one way to turn the mood around and spice things up is a sensual massage. Treat your partner to a nice, slow massage using massage oil.

Even if sex doesn’t result, your spouse will be relaxed and appreciative! Often, a massage proves to be a very effective form of foreplay.

8. Pick up Some Sexy Toys or Erotica.

You don’t need to go too crazy here, but start exploring ways to spice things up. If your sex life is in a rut, sex toys can do the trick and turn things around.

Invite your partner to check out some adult websites and place an order. Or, go on an adventure and visit an adult store. Choose something you both want to try.

You can also incorporate sexy or exciting stories into your relationship in written, visual, or audible form. Read sexy stories or poems aloud, or listen to steamy audio.

If watching erotica isn’t your thing, that’s OK. There are many alternatives. Do what feels comfortable—and have fun with it!

9. Schedule It.

Date Night Marked on Calendar
While it may not seem exciting, planning intimate time with your partner is better than forgetting to partake altogether!

It might not seem sexy to add intimate time with your partner to your planner or calendar, but it might be necessary when your to-do list is full.

Scheduling sex ensures that it will remain a priority. You’ll start looking forward to your scheduled “sexy time.” Stick to your schedule, like an exercise class or doctor’s appointment.

When you plan sexy time, remind your partner—not just because you’re both likely to forget but also to build up the anticipation even further.

Text your spouse in the morning or discuss over breakfast (using code words if you have kids!).

10. Excite All of the Senses.

Create a sexy atmosphere by breaking it down by the five senses.

Start with sight. Clear the clutter from your bedroom—piles of laundry, kids’ toys, and other clutter must go! You might install dim lighting or add beautiful bedding like silky sheets.

For sound, create a sexy playlist; for smell, light a scented candle that you only use when you’re about to have sex. Work your way through the senses!

11. Initiate!

How long has it been since you’ve initiated sex?

How often does your spouse ask you to have sex?

If you rarely (or never!) initiate sex, now is the time to step up.

12. Add Some Gratitude.

Your sex life is a significant indicator of what’s going on in your marriage. When you’re happy and satisfied sexually, your marriage is probably on track.

So, if sex is boring (or doesn’t happen at all!), find ways to improve communication and get closer to your partner.

You can do this by adding gratitude to the equation.

Thank your spouse for the little thingsinside the bedroom, too! Tell your partner what you enjoy and what you like, and let them know you’re grateful that they prioritize a fun sex life.

13. Change of Scenery.

Compassionate Couple in a Change of Scenery
Find a new, safe, secure location (preferably outdoors) and engage your instincts together.

Bust up your routine and shake things up by trying different things in various places.

Probably not a good idea to do something too risky—but get intimate in other places around your home besides your bedroom. Take things outdoors, if possible!

14. Naughty Gifts.

Surprise your partner with a naughty present ­— it can be anything that sparks your spouse’s imagination.

There are online shops where you can make discrete purchases. Hide the gift under your spouse’s pillow, or get creative.

Time to Spice Things Up

Enjoying a happy, healthy sex life is essential for most marriages. After reading this article, you have many ideas on spicing up your marriage outside and inside the bedroom.

If spicing up your marriage is important, you only need to make a small effort and implement just a few of these suggestions. You don’t have to do everything on the list.

Make the time, move a little outside of your comfort zone, and reignite that spark!

Photo of author

Angela Doel

Angela M. Doel has researched and written about mental health problems that impact relationships, such as navigating divorce, rebuilding relationships, enhancing communication, and overcoming sex addiction. She published The Couples Communication Workbook: Therapeutic Homework Assignments to Foster Supportive Relationships (2020, Between Sessions Resources, Inc.).

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