turn-ons

What men find sexy: 20 simple (but surprising) ways to turn him on

Jan. 31, 2002 at 1:42 PM ET

Want to know what men find sexy? Here's a hint—high heels and miniskirts aren't the only things that drive them wild. We asked real guys to share their most memorable seduction scenes, and found out a little creativity goes a long way. Add your personal touch to a night together, and you'll have him begging for more. Whether you're in a relationship or not, take a cue from these 20 honest answers about what guys really love! 

1. Set the scene: "My girlfriend took me to an isolated beach for fresh grilled mussels and clams. There wasn't anyone else there, and we started to kiss. It was so quiet that every little sound seemed to carry and echo. Train in the distance, an old wooden trestle, our blanket ... her bringing me out there made me truly want to be with her."captiveshark, 38

2. Plan a party: "I loved when my girlfriend planned a surprise party for me on my 30th birthday. All the work she put into it showed how much she cared about me, and I found that to be incredibly sexy."—Michael, 32, entertainment agent

3. Surprise him at the door: "One day, upon returning from work, my girlfriend greeted me in black lingerie and a sexy haircut. It was so sexy because she proved to me that she wanted to make my fantasies come true."—Norm, 36, sales associate

4. Show off your silly side: "If a woman loves The Simpsons, I love her. It means she has a good sense of humor and likes silly stuff. That plus confidence, and I am very attracted!"—Dave, 33, snowboarding instructor

5. Make the first move: "My wife and I were looking at pictures during one of our first dates. While we were sitting on the bed she put her arm around me. It was so genuine and warm a gesture. That's when I knew we really had a good thing going. I wanted to be with her sexually, and not just for a one-night stand!"—Sam, company president, 45

6. Don't try to be sexy: "When my girlfriend wears a large T-shirt with no pants or something else casual around the apartment, it's very sexy. The sexiest things she does, she does without realizing it."—Josh, 26, business school student

7. Take a bath for two: "The sexiest thing my wife ever did was ask me to take a bubble bath. It was out of the ordinary, sensual and very relaxing."—Joe, 34, publicist

8. Plan your next date: "One day my girlfriend (who is now my wife) came over to my place for our date and brought me flowers. Then, she took me to a nice restaurant. After dinner, she took me to a jazz bar and bought me a few drinks. Then, she took me home and ... that was a great night! It was very seductive to have a woman spend so much time planning an evening with me. She showed me that she knew what I liked, was willing to go out on a limb and was into the relationship for more than just what I could give."—Todd, 27, social worker

9. Do a (private) striptease: "My girlfriend performed a strip show just for me, but wouldn't let me touch her at all. I had to obey the 'club rules.' It drove me crazy. Good thing there weren't any bouncers!"—Matt, 27, music agent

10. Become his favorite sexy star: "I like James Bond movies. For Valentine's Day one year, a girlfriend gave me a series of cards and gifts that followed a James Bondian storyline. I got a martini recipe book with the glasses and ingredients all accompanied by very sexy notes. As I made a couple martinis —shaken, not stirred, of course—she slipped into the bedroom to prepare my final gift: a candlelit Bond girl wearing brand new lingerie!"—Ky, 26, editor

11. Wear your heart on your sleeve: "I was sitting next to a girl I had just started dating, and unconsciously touched her forearm. She got goose bumps, and when I noticed, she smiled, a bit embarrassed. This was the most sincere compliment I could ever imagine getting and made me extremely glad to be with her. A woman with a caring attitude is sexy."—Jim, 33

12. Hold him tight: "Sometimes, a hug can be the sexiest thing. When our bodies are so close, every level of communication from our heads down to our toes is engaged. If it clicks, well, that does it for me."—Patrick, 26, producer

13. Just smilereally! "The first time my girlfriend smiled at me from across a crowded room, I knew that I wanted to be with her. Showing that she liked me totally fired up my desire."—Norm, age 36, sales associate

14. Write a sexy love note: "When we were dating, my girlfriend wrote a note that said: 'Thank you for introducing me to the joy of having my toes sucked.' Reading it triggered my memory of the electricity in her body when we were together."—Patrick, 26, Web producer

15. Show off your talents: "I remember having dinner with a group at this outdoor restaurant on Sunset, in Los Angeles. My girlfriend was talking about her upcoming audition for acting school, but then she totally surprised me. She stood up and did her monologue, and the best part was, it was really funny! I was so impressed that she would get up and perform. It totally turned me on that she didn't care about a lot of people watching."—Dave, 33, snowboarding instructor

16. Try something new: "My girlfriend was staying at one of the fanciest hotels in Chicago (where we both lived). She was there doing business, but snuck me in to spend the night. We had a big fancy bed and access to room service. It was so exciting. Suddenly she looked me right in the eye and told me exactly what she wanted me to do to her, explicitly. This wasn't in keeping with her personality, so it showed me that she had a sexual side she was comfortable sharing with me, and that she wanted me. The change of pace that night was exciting and magical.—Ben, 25, journalist

17. Be suggestive: "I was out with my girlfriend for an anniversary dinner at a very nice restaurant. She was wearing a skirt and black stockings. During the middle of our meal she leaned over and mentioned that she forgot something at home—her underwear! I looked down, and she had pulled her skirt up just enough for me to see that she was telling the truth. I was lucky not to crash the car on our way home!"—David, 25, attorney

18. Put aside your inhibitions: "While we were out together, my wife let me know she was wearing very seductive lingerie. Later, the outfit itself was so sexy to see. But what seduced me was the fact that I know she doesn't have a great body image. She wore something that she didn't think she looked good in because I would love it. And of course, she looked great!"—nos482, 31, attorney

19. Indulge his quirks: "I'm a huge ketchup freak. So one day the woman I was dating put together this package for me, and instead of surrounding all my goodies in some fancy paper, she filled the bag with ketchup packets. She showed she was paying attention to my little weird quirks and such, and I thought that was the cutest thing ever!"—Josh, 26, portfolio manager

20. Help with the tough tasks: "The morning after I threw a wild party, my wife (then girlfriend) helped us clean up the huge mess, even though some of it had actually made me gag! I knew then that she would stick by me—and that I felt the same way. That was also the morning that I first said 'I love you' to her."—nos482, 31, attorney

A version of this story originally appeared on iVillage.

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