Why you should be reading about sex, intimacy, masturbation, and relationships
Why should you be reading about sex? Sex education books and sex positive books can help to give you the insight that incomplete sex education, chatting with friends, and your past sexual experiences are lacking. Most of us have questions about sex and relationships, yet don’t know where the most accurate and helpful information can be found. Turn to a book! Written by experts, doctors, or the more experienced, reading about sex can offer you valuable insights and tangible tips to enhance your sex life. Here are our favorite books on sex:
Our List of the Best Books on Sex and Relationships
Best book for understanding different relationship structures like open relationships and non-monogamy:
The Ethical Slut
Ever wonder about what being poly is like? Looking to open up your current relationship? The Ethical Slut is the essential guide for anyone who wants to explore non-monogamy, or for those for are simply curious are what it entails. Currently in it’s 3rd edition, The Ethical Slut is a classic in the category of sex positive books that not only introduces you to the world of non-monogamy, it breaks down real-life obstacles and struggles like jealousy, dating, and sexual safety.
Best book for sexual self-esteem and body-positivity:
Lack of self-esteem can affect every area of our lives, including partnered sex, solo pleasure, and our romantic relationships. Can you imagine how much better your life might be without all that negative self-talk? Filled with beautiful graphics, insightful prompts, and helpful exercises, Body Talk is offer tangible advice and steps to overcoming self-shame and help move you to a place of self-love.
Best book for exploring masturbation and self-pleasure:
Sex for One
Masturbation can be a great way to explore your sexuality, build a confident body image, and learn about your sexual preferences. But how do you start masturbating if you’ve never tried it? What if body-image (or more specifically genital-image) is holding you back? Despite being an act of self-care and self-exploration, many of us hold only to the notions that masturbation is taboo. In Sex for One, legendary sex expert Betty Dodson (RIP) will help to overcome any shame to make way for for deep self exploration. Plus there are some amazing erotic drawings included by Betty herself.
Best book for understanding how your body works:
The V Book
No matter if you’re a vagina owner or not, you’ve probably had some questions about how the V works. With The V Book, you will learn everything you need to know about the basics of vulvovaginal health and as a result, your overall health. Learn about how periods work, what pregnancy is like, what actually happens during arousal, and what the difference is between a vagina and vulva. Packed with great anatomy pictures, helpful tips, and useful information, The V Book is everything you need to know about vaginas in one easy to understand guide.
The Penis Book
Do you know how your penis truly works? The Penis book is an unflinching, comprehensive guide to all things dick : everything from sexually transmitted infections to penis variation, the science of blood flow to erectile dysfunction. Featuring an easy-to-follow plan for optimum penis health, including dietary recommendations, information on some penis-healthy foods, and suggested exercises for penis wellbeing. Your guide to a healthy and happy penis, for penis owners and penis appreciators alike!
Best book about sex for teens:
S.E.X.: The All-You-Need-To-Know Sexuality Guide to Get You Through Your Teens and Twenties
Many of us who were left with insecurities and questions about sex as an adult can attribute it to lack of comprehensive sexual health information during our teen years. This is the book all of us needed in our adolescent years! S.E.X offers clear advice and give the essentials of what a young person needs and wants to know about sex—no shame, no judgement, just comprehensive and accurate info in a clear, straightforward language. S.E.X covers everything a teen could have questions about, including anatomy, identity, relationships, communication, consent, safety, and more. Ideal for gifting to a teen, this book is also helpful for parents and caregivers too.
Best book for understanding arousal:
Come As You Are
Why do our bodies sometimes react differently than our brains? If you’ve ever experienced being turned on mentally yet not getting wet or suddenly having a boner out of the blue, Come As You Are is the must-read sex book for you. An essential exploration of why and how sexuality works—based on groundbreaking research and brain science, Come As You Are explores the link between sex and stress, mood, trust, and body image to help you transform your sex life into one filled with confidence and joy.
Best Book for learning about kink and BDSM:
Ultimate Guide to Kink: BDSM, Role Play and the Erotic Edge
Are you curious about kink or want to get started in BDSM but don’t know where to turn? Whether you are just curious about kinky sex, an experienced BDSM player, or interested in exploring your own erotic edges, he Ultimate Guide to Kink features the expertise of renowned educators writing passionately on their favorite subjects. Learn about bondage, spanking, flogging, sensation play, rough sex, dominance, submission, and more from people who truly know what they’re talking about!
The Ultimate Guide to Sex and Disability - From comprehensive sex ed basics to the ins and outs of pleasure and kink, this book is a must read for anyone having or planning to have sex! For everyone, of all ages, genders, and sexual identities, The Ultimate Guide to Sex and Disability covers the span of disabilities – from chronic fatigue and back pain to spinal cord injury, multiple sclerosis, cystic fibrosis, cerebral palsy, and many others.
Healing Painful Sex - Millions of people with vaginas experience painful sex, yet it is frequently ignored or misdiagnosed. In Healing Painful Sex, Deborah Coady, MD and Nancy Fish use their combined professional expertise as a doctor and therapist to provide us with an understanding of why painful sex happens, its many causes and possible treatment options, from both a physical and psychological perspective.
How to be Knotty: The Essential Guide to Modern Rope Bondage - Intended for those who have a little or no experience with rope bondage (sometimes referred to a Shibari), How to be Knotty is the best place to start with erotic rope tying. With easy-to-understand and step-by-step techniques, this books is easy to follow and fun to explore. Complete with phenomenal full-color photos will show you how to achieve over 20 ties and offer a little sexy inspiration during.
Pleasure Activism - Let Adrienne Maree Brown introduce you to the idea of “pleasure activism" and the notion that healing the world does not have to be devoid of pleasure itself. Combining personal reflection, interviews, and work from legendary feminist figures, Adrienne Maree Brown invites to ask questions about how pleasure can play an invaluable elements in our daily lives. Drawing on black feminist traditions, she challenges us to rethink the "rules" of activism as we know them.
Can’t get enough? Check out our other books on sex and intimacy to find some more sex positive and educational books.