30 Ways You Should Explore Your Sexuality By The Time You're 30

by Zara Barrie

OK, so we all know that I'm a super smug 30-year-old woman now. I've written about how much better my life has become after turning 30 and I've shamelessly showed off about my newfound strength and wisdom now that I'm a REAL WOMAN.

Because truth be told, my 20-something kittens, a woman is not really a woman until she's 30 years old. You're just a tiny girl creature sifting through the dark, cruel city streets in the thick of your 20s.

And you're making mistakes left and right and your style is all over the place and you pretty much repel the general population because your energy is this bizarre manic cross between overly confident and wildly insecure.

It's unsettling.

To be perfectly honest, I'm still pretty fucked up now I've crossed over into this new decade. I'm not tapping my acrylic nails on a glass of red wine with a green exfoliating mask on acting all civilized on the weekends, though I wish I was.

I still get too wasted sometimes. Like the other night after too much tequila when my girlfriend lovingly suggested I take my contacts out before bed, I drunkenly slurred to her, "leave me alone" before accused her acting like a "Republican." WHAT DOES THAT EVEN MEAN?

See, I'm still a mess. Just a refined mess with more life experience on my side.

When I gaze back into the dark and stormy vortex of my 20s, I realize so much of my greatest life lessons were connected to sexuality. I came out in my 20s. I had sex with men and women. I did really embarrassing sexual things that I don't even want to type out because I'm feeling super vulnerable and shy today (not a productive way to feel when you're a sex and dating writer).

I tried and experimented in my 20s with a lot of different forms of sexual activity (who am I, a nun? "Sexual activity?" I hate myself), and there are some sex acts I wish I had tried more of.

What I've concluded is this: There are 30 things all girls should try before they turn 30.

I don't care where you swing on the sexuality pendulum. If you're curious about any of these 30 things, big sister Zara recommends getting them out of your system before 30. Not because you're a dried-up old lady at that age, nah. You're just getting hot at 30.

But it's because you want to enter your 30s comfortable in your sex skin, and the only way to get comfortable is to experiment, baby.


1. Passionately kiss a girl in a crowded room if you find her attractive. It's thrilling. Even if you think you're totally "straight." It's a life experience.

2. Hook up with someone famous. Even if they're famous for being on a dumb reality show (though strive for better if you can). It's something to tell the grandkids about.

3. Go to at least one sex party, even if you don't participate. I went to a gay male leather sex party in Chelsea once, and while I wasn't even slightly turned on, it's one of my fondest memories and one that will forever be burned into the depths of my brain.

4. Try on a strap-on just once. Even if you never, ever, ever have sex with someone with it, it's super, super empowering and super, super interesting to feel what it's like to have something artificial between your legs and you will surely make some pretty deep discoveries about yourself.

5. Hook up with your best friend. It will only bring you closer. It might even end in love, and if it doesn't, it will create an awkward sexual tension between the two of you that will make your lives more multifaceted and interesting.

6. Take a bondage course in a sex-positive feminist sex class. Even if it's only to learn how to tie a rope properly. You'll impress everyone on a yacht when you seamlessly tie the boat to the dock like a pro. And you'll giggle to yourself as to how you got so good at it.

7. Don't be afraid to have sex with feelings. Love sex is amazing, don't rob yourself of it just because you're so tough and removed and hard, babe.

8. Tell someone to politely fuck off when they ask you out after you slept with them and they ignored your texts for 3 months afterward. It feels so good to tell someone to fuck off, especially if they're an entitled white male used to getting whatever the hell they want.

9. Have a one-night stand, then spill all of your secrets to him or her afterward, but never, ever call them again.

10. Go home with a stranger only to make out all night and get them all riled up with sex fever but don't give it up. It will remind you of your sexual prowess, which is always a good thing.

11. Have sex with an ex who is bad for you. It's a horrible idea, but it's the most loaded, complicated and sort of mind-blowing sex out there.

12. Give yourself an orgasm in the bathroom in work after your boss talks down to you.

13. Have a threesome, but make sure you're the one who gets all the attention.

14. Have a threesome with your partner who has recently screwed you over, and make sure they're left out. It's the best revenge ever.

15. Put on a massive peacoat and head to your hookup's house with no clothes on underneath. It works well in the movies and in real life.

16. Have sex under the stars on a beach.

17. Have sex at your partner's parent's house in their childhood bedroom and be all quiet and feel like giddy teenagers who are BEING BAD.

18. Have sex with an older woman/man.

19. Teach a younger woman/man how to be a good lover (OVER 18 OF COURSE, YOU PERVS).

20. Ask a gay man how to give a good blowjob if you're a straight girl and ask a seasoned lesbian how to eat a girl out if you're a gay girl.

21. Have sex with someone in authority. Like your boss. And dominate the hell out of them in bed and act like it never, ever happened when you see them the next day in the office. It's super fun to throw them off their high horse like that.

22. Recklessly dirty talk and say all the things they say in porn and shame spiral about it the next day to your girlfriends. They will be super entertained and that kind of raw girl talk is so much damn fun, it's worth the shame shudders.

23. Salaciously make out in a movie theatre like a teenager.

24. Try at least one of these freaky things: anal sex, bondage, role play, public sex or sensory depravation. JUST BE SAFE and don't do it with any random asshole who won't respect you or your boundaries.

25. Stop sex when it's bad. Don't give a shit if it pisses your partner off, just say "I DON'T LIKE THIS" and make it stop.

26. Leave after a hookup without spending the night.

27. Stay the night with a random hookup and cuddle like lovers and eat breakfast together and then flee forever and ever.

28. Have sex with someone who doesn't speak your language and ask them to dirty talk to you in their native tongue.

29. Speaking of tongue, let as many people go down on you as much as possible and enjoy every single second of it.

30. Remember, sex is as much for your own pleasure as much as it is for your partner's pleasure. I wish I learned that sooner. I had so much bad, people-pleasing sex and I will never get that time back.