Sex and relationships can be such taboo topics, so we opened the floor for an anonymous survey to find out the truth behind the intimacy curtain. We asked nine questions revolving around these exact topics, and we’re revealing readers’ responses to you.
What feature are you most attracted to? What are your typical turn-ons?
Eyes and smile were two of the top responses. "The eyes have it!" one reader says. "You can tell a lot about a person and who they really are just by looking into their eyes."
Not all of the most attractive features were physical, though, as confidence, sense of humor and intelligence all ranked high on the list. "Being smart is sexy," one reader says.
While these are all common attractions, some readers turn to some not-so-traditional features for their turn-ons. "It’s weird, but I think the back of a man’s ankle is super sexy. It just looks so strong," another reader says.
What are your go-to flirting methods?
Cincy Chic readers are smart. They tap into what they think is sexy to use for their own flirtations. Making eye contact, smiling and showing a sense of humor topped the list of reader responses. "Eye contact! Nothing shows interest faster or more effectively," one reader says. "But I always break it first and don’t look back too often."
Beyond using your own lure as bait, conversation seems to be key. Several readers mentioned that they will strike up a conversation as a sure-fire way to get a cutie hooked. "Once I’ve reeled someone in, I make sure to stay positive and to choose interesting conversation topics that won’t degenerate into arguments," another reader says.
How can your date be sure to wow you?
Manners definitely topped the list on this one. "Manners, manners, manners! If we’re going to eat, you can’t chew with your mouth open or leave the napkin on the table," a reader says. "And open the damn door!"
Coming in at a close second was showing an interest in you, whether that means remembering details from past conversations or "figuring out the things that I like by, not asking me, but getting to know friends and acquaintances," one reader says.
Thinking ahead and putting some thought into a date also ranks close to the top. "If he picks the restaurant or the date location or has thoughts/ideas/wants of his own and doesn’t just passively say "whatever you want," it shows he’s interested in the date and has to be at least a halfway interesting person," another reader says. "It also gives me liberty on the date to ask why he picked it, etc. — good insight into what he’s like."
One reader has quite the story for her partner to live up to: "One birthday I received several gifts — delivered flowers, a surprise luncheon with girlfriends, a massage, and finally dinner with my man," she says. "At each event I received a letter for a word that needed unscrambled: R, then P, then I, and finally T. My birthday gift was a Trip, and dinner presented three options: Maine, California, Seattle. That was a WOW!"
Where is your favorite date spot in Cincinnati?
You ladies like to be taken out to the ball game. Yup, Reds’ games ranked No. 1 for this question. "You have action to break up silence but also plenty of time to chat," one reader says. "And you have to sit pretty close!"
Nada came in at No. 2. "It’s sexy, romantic, delicious, well-priced, and in the spring/summer/fall you can sit on their patio. I love the atmosphere," another reader says.
Some other dinner date spots mentioned include Bonefish Grill, Dee Felice Cafe, The Celestial Restaurant and Hugo. If you’re looking to do a little less than dinner and just grab a drink, other readers recommend The Blind Lemon and Sitwell’s Coffee House.
Other readers enjoy entire areas of town. Hyde Park, Downtown, Newport on the Levee, Oakley, Clifton and Mainstrasse all make for great dates, readers say.
Beauty never hurts, either, whether it’s the romantic sound of the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra or any spot that has a beautiful view. And heading to a local park like Ault Park makes for a nice time. "Everyone looks good in the sunshine, and the outdoors get you both revved to let nature take its course!"
What are your deal breakers?
Smoking is No. 1 followed by bad breath and not taking care of their teeth. You ladies also refuse to put up with a criminal record, disrespect, negative attitude and bad manners. "They have a mom, and I am not about to teach them manners they should know," one reader says.
Drugs (including excessive alcohol) and drama are some other deal breakers. Irresponsibility, particularly with finances, also ranks high on the response list. "He doesn’t have to be rich, but I’m a single mom and can’t take on someone else’s mess," another reader says.
While readers don’t want to get involved with a baby daddy, they do want their partner to want kids in the future and won’t stick around otherwise.
How do you like to set the mood for a night of intimacy?
To make for a good night, several readers recommended starting during the day. Whether you’re taking part in some role playing or engaging in flirty conversation, starting early builds up to a great night. "I control the action, meaning I learn what she likes and cater the evening around her likes/wants/turn-ons," one reader says. "Then I twist it with a kinky request — say, no panties, bra, something that only she and I know about for the entire evening."
Music is a top pick, too. One reader sets her speakers to Marvin Gaye while another heads to Pandora to turn on her David Gray station. Other readers just like some soft music playing in the background.
Lighting means everything. Candles rank high in the responses as well as low lights. That lighting ties in perfectly with a nice dinner many readers use to set the mood. (And they definitely don’t forget a bottle of wine.)
Massage also tops the list. One reader even combines her candle and massage steps into one with a hot oil massage candle from Hustler Cincinnati.
What details added up to the most romantic experience you’ve had?
The key detail to many readers’ responses was an out-of-town location. From Hawaii to San Francisco to Orlando to Rome, romantic encounters happened to Cincy Chic readers around the globe.
"My fiance took me to Rome for my last birthday, and we spent my b-day shopping and dining at the Spanish Steps," one reader says.
Another reader’s Italian romance took place with a complete stranger. She lists the details of the day: "An Italian stranger, who found me 30 miles from the train station that he saw me in the day before; a boat ride on the Mediterranean; wine; limoncello; fabulous food; a day of conversing in Italian; him writing my name on a graffiti wall, ‘Happy for a day with…’; his whispers in my ear as we sat seaside: ‘I would have come these 30 miles on foot, only to spend this day and night with you…’ Yeah — a romantic day."
Sub out the Mediterranean for the Pacific Ocean, and you can transport to another reader’s most romantic experience. She and her partner had a commitment ceremony in Maui, Hawaii. "We had a limo drop us off at the beach where the photographer led us to the pink sand and blue ocean where the sun was just about to set. Beautiful," she says.
Another reader’s trip out of town swept her off her feet and into the clouds. "The most romantic experience that I have had was taking a helicopter ride over the San Franciso Bay then dinner down on the pier. After dinner, a nice stroll in the warm air," she says.
A little closer to home, one reader found romance in the Sunshine State. "I took a trip to Orlando to meet my honey while he was there on business. Upon check in, the lady told me I had a massage waiting in an hour. We had an excellent weekend, and that massage was an excellent unexpected start," she says.
How do you keep things interesting in the bedroom?
Keeping an open mind and open line of communication keeps things interesting for many Cincy Chic readers. "Speak up! Ladies, if you don’t tell him what you want/don’t want, he will either take forever to figure it out or he never will," one reader says.
Another top response for this question is to be fully present in the moment and be an active participant. "If you are calling it in, everyone (even you) knows it," another reader says.
Sex toys, flavored lubricants and even sex furniture can spice things up. "The other day I came home to find my boyfriend had bought a piece of sex furniture — a wedge of sorts. It’s incredible," a reader says.
Role playing, costumes and lingerie are high in the list of responses too. "You can take this to many levels — sweet, naughty, fun — guys love it, and it makes a great surprise. Easy to change things up without doing anything radical," another reader says.
Where do you go for sex tips and relationship advice?
Many readers turn to their girlfriends for tips and advice but not always for both. One reader goes to her girlfriends for sex talk but doesn’t go to anyone for relationship advice. "Very rarely does anyone have an unbiased, complete view of your situation," she says.
For another reader, it’s the complete opposite. She’ll go to her gal pals for relationship advice, but when it comes to sex tips, she heads to the Internet. "Sometimes my gal pals aren’t open-minded enough to talk candidly. Tacky, but true," she says.
If they’re not turning to their girlfriends, many people check out magazines (Play Boy, Esquire and Women’s Health), Web sites (Cosmopolitan.com and GirlsAskGuys.com) and Pure Romance. And porn isn’t just for guys. Many readers watch porn for their sex tips.
So whether you’re looking for a great date spot or you want to spice up the bedroom, we hope your fellow reader responses will help make that happen. And from Cincy Chic to you, happy Valentine’s Day!
Photographer: Neysa Ruhl
Model: Amy Scalia