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Sex + CBD: Why It Works & Why You Might Want To Try It

Written by Erin Feher

Photography by Photos courtesy of Foria

We’ll admit, when CBD first came on the market, popping up in everything from hair detangler to workout pants, we were a little skeptical of the “it” ingredient of the moment. But after getting schooled on the chemistry behind the compound and trying some high-quality, locally sourced products tailored for sleep and stress, we were converts. So, when we heard that CBD could be a game-changer when it comes to sexual pleasure, and even help alleviate menstrual pain and IBS, we needed to know more, immediately. We asked Kiana Reeves, a somatic sex educator and the chief brand educator at Foria—a wellness brand harnessing the power of cannabis for female sexual health—to answer all our burning questions around the connection between CBD and sex. Check out what she has to say below, and then explore Foria’s wide range of unique plant-based CBD products for intimacy, pain relief, and optimal wellbeing—and have fun! ;)

Tell us about the “pleasure power” of cannabinoids. “While there are no known studies specifically focusing on CBD and sex, we can extrapolate that some of CBD’s primary benefits—shown in various clinical studies—could also be helpful in the bedroom and beyond. Used both topically and orally, CBD is an anti-inflammatory, with relaxing effects on muscle tension that also supports blood flow to the tissues. Since blood flow is a primary function of arousal, it makes sense that some of these cannabinoid benefits would translate to supporting sexual pleasure.”

“At Foria, our approach is to blend CBD with other plants that have a long history of use as aphrodisiacs, due to a wide variety of effects. Plants work better together! That’s why our natural arousal oil, Foria Awaken, also contains our proprietary extract of kava kava root, which stimulates the same receptors as THC, so you get analgesic qualities of the kava, paired with the CBD and other herbs—all helping to soothe pain, and enhance the body’s natural arousal processes. The cardamom in Awaken also has anti-inflammatory benefits—it’s labeled a ‘dietary cannabinoid’ by scientists—, the cacao enhances your natural endocannabinoid levels, ginger has antispasmodic, warming properties, and the peppermint and vanilla provide cooling and soothing effects.”

But it’s not just about pleasure—we have heard CBD can help alleviate period pain, IBS, even endometriosis. Can you tell why this is? “Our customers are really the experts on this. Again and again, they are sharing that a multitude of issues that complicate their sexual wellness are being soothed through the use of cannabinoids. We are hearing from people with severe menstrual cramps, endometriosis, and chronic pelvic pain, all receiving relief, as well as people who have issues like vulvodynia, vaginismus, or menopausal symptoms. Many of them are experiencing pain-free sex for the first time in years.”

“We believe the products are working this way in large part due to the anti-inflammatory and pain-relieving qualities of CBD, the high-quality and formulation of our products, and their unique delivery methods. Our suppositories and arousal oils are applied directly to the genitals and surrounding tissue, meaning that the cannabinoids are being absorbed directly where the relief is needed most—instead of taking something that affects your entire body. We have cannabinoid receptors throughout our entire pelvis, including the uterus, ovaries, and vaginal canal, and these tissues are incredibly absorbent.”

Let’s talk orgasms and how important they are to women, especially busy, stressed-out women? “Pleasure is so important, and not just in some hedonistic way. Having moments of pleasure dedicated to the simple act of being with your body and what feels good can relieve a huge amount of stress, and bring you out of your head and into your body—all of which is incredibly healing emotionally and physically. Masturbation can be a really unique tool to tune you into your body, slow you down, and nourish your nervous system. Orgasms even support your sleep and immune system, because they cause the body to release its own cannabinoids. We can take cannabinoids from plants, but we can also do things to make our own!”

Tell us your tips for switching things up when it comes to sex and masturbation. “There are a few things that are really important here, one is that sex and masturbation should never be routine. In fact, as soon as you notice you are in a routine, try to head toward curiosity and getting out of your comfort zone by asking questions like ‘What would feel good for me right now?’ or telling your partner ‘I would really love it if you could explore touching me in this way.’ That is where all the good learning happens, and it is also where you can start expanding your capacity for pleasure. The willingness to be vulnerable is essential, and the openness to feeling a bit clunky is also important, because all good learning takes practice.”

“Another tip is to pay attention to your breath and notice the moments when you tense up. Often as we head towards climax we stop breathing deeply, and we hold a tense posture. When you get to this edge, try deepening your breath and relaxing any noticeably tense muscles—allow the rising sensation to move through your entire body, and see where it takes you!”


What about combining both CBD and THC for sexual pleasure—what should folks know there? “Way back in 2014, our very first product, Foria Pleasure, was simply pure THC in organic-certified liquid coconut oil. That formula works amazingly well, and it does so with little or no psychoactive effects, helping people experience deeper, more intense orgasm, or multiple orgasms. Since then there have been a lot of copy-cat products, but hardly any are using certified-organic oil and supporting regenerative farming. In California, our cannabis comes exclusively from permaculture farms that enhance soil, water, and biodiversity. If you can pay a visit to California or Colorado, I highly recommend visiting a dispensary that carries Foria.”

“Apart from the topical THC arousal oils, these days most people have access to THC edibles or inhalables, and these can definitely enhance sexual pleasure. THC has a stronger effect on arousal than CBD, but it’s all about the dose. Lower doses have been proven to increase people’s arousal, pleasure, and orgasm, while helping increase men’s staying power. But higher doses can have the opposite effect. And this isn’t just due to the psychological effects of THC—there’s actually a physiological response that increases blood flow to the genitals and turns the lights down on tension and discomfort.”

“The euphoria is definitely part of it, too, but after you experiment with THC enough, you can learn to tune in to this pleasurable feeling even when you aren’t high. This is why I counsel people to focus on breath and physical relaxation during sex and self-pleasure. At Foria, we firmly believe in using the whole plant, both CBD and THC together, along with the terpenes, flavonoids and other cannabinoids. These plant compounds have remarkable healing properties and work synergistically together—studies are showing better results when all of these beneficial plant compounds are working together. CBD is actually a safety cushion against the overstimulating effects of THC. The ‘weed of the 70s’ was so mellow and pleasant because it was higher in CBD, and it’s wonderful that legalization has brought back these more balanced strains of cannabis. Chronic, daily use of high THC products is NOT harmless, so we recommend restraint and taking breaks. That said, not everyone wants to use THC and not everyone has access to it, which is why we developed Awaken with CBD instead of THC. The other botanicals in Awaken— like the kava and cacao—interact with the endocannabinoid system in a similar way to THC.”

How would someone new to cannabinoids figure out which products to choose and how to dose? “It depends on your needs. Although we offer ultra-high-quality CBD supplements that are more reliable than most other CBD oils and vapes out there, our specialty is sexual wellness. For sex, we encourage people to experiment with Awaken, our natural arousal oil, and find the amount that works for them to improve arousal, relax their pelvic floor, and soothe discomfort. Some people are only using a few sprays on the clitoris and labia, while others use a handful of the oil to massage the vulva and even inside the vagina. Awaken doesn’t just have to be for partnered sex—in fact we encourage people to do a self-pleasure session for their first time.”

“Customers who found the most relief from dryness and discomfort told us that they were applying Awaken deep inside the vagina, so we developed our Intimacy Suppositories to offer an extra dose of CBD right where it’s needed. We’re getting amazing responses: people are feeling more aroused, enjoying deeper penetration, and having less discomfort. Both products work for anal play, too—we’re hearing from folks who are finally able to explore that realm thanks to us.”

“For menstrual cramps and general pelvic discomfort, we offer suppositories with twice as much CBD—100mg vs 50mg. Much of the discomfort of menstruation and endometriosis comes from inflammation, which CBD is really great at handling. CBD also helps muscles to relax, which is crucial to making menstrual cramps less intense. The trick is to use these the first day of your period or even before that—if you wait until the pain is unbearable, it’s much harder to soothe the inflammation.”

“Using CBD for overall wellness is a different story. Everyone’s endo-cannabinoid system is different. But the best advice, which a lot of people don’t know, is that you should be taking CBD oil daily to bring your system into balance. It’s not like THC, where you take one edible and feel the effects immediately. Some people do notice an immediate effect, but CBD is complex. Try a standard dose of our Tonic, which contains about 20mg of CBD, under the tongue and swish it vigorously before swallowing. If you do that once or twice a day for a week or so, you’ll know if you need to increase or even taper your dose.”

“For faster mood-boosting and relaxation, vaporizing CBD is amazing. Our vape pen is extremely pure and high quality, with organic botanicals and ultra pure hardware that doesn’t smolder like most cheap vapes. It also tastes delicious—it’s delightfully minty!”

For more on Foria’s products and how CBD can enhance sex, check out the brand’s incredibly informative blog. And use code Mother20 for 20% your order! 

This post is brought to you by Mother + Foria.

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