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Updated 10 April 2013

How to be a good lover

Most men will never be good-looking, rich and romantic. That's okay, a few short steps can turn you into the sort of lover that will make your partner overlook these shortcomings.

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Most men will never have a torso like Jean-Claude van Damme, own a McLaren F1 or be able to recite Shakespeare's love sonnets. That's okay, because a few short steps can turn you into the sort of lover that will make your partner overlook these shortcomings.


Learn the art of sensual massage

Visit your local Body Shop outlet and display no hint of emotion as you buy some of their pricey but hugely useful Sensual Bath and Massage Oil. Or make up your own concoction of oils, including sandalwood, lemon grass, musk and lavender. You can use the essential oils in a burner, or mix it with carrier oil - sweet almond oil is fine - and use it as massage oil. A warning on massage: many blokes rub too hard. Try to rub more softly than you like to be rubbed. By all means work the back (never directly on the spine), shoulders, arms, buttocks and legs, but for a change, massage your partner's face and hands as well. Think of how stress builds up in your face, squinting at a monitor, traffic or dollar-rand exchange rates. It’s the same for her.

Make a special place for love
Yes, there are times for wild, impromptu couplings on your desk, the kitchen counter and car bonnet. But you're likely to rely on your bed as the backdrop for most of your lovemaking, so have a look at what's around it. The photo of your ex has to go, for a start. Ridding the room of clutter is paramount. Even if you don't go for the Scandinavian minimalist look, at least get rid of those all those dusty copies of National Geographic on the bedside table. Some wind chimes, subtle incense can do nicely, and an indoor water feature might be fun. Switch off all phones and the door bell.

Appeal to all the senses
We already mentioned incense. If the sound of the neighbour saying "Lekker-like-a-cracker" (for the 47th time) while he cleans his new swimming pool irks you, maybe it's time to buy a new house, or at least to block out the banality with some white noise courtesy of a fan or a water feature. Dispense with the Red Hot Chilli Peppers CD in favour of something more earthy. Some lovers swear by CDs containing only the sound of the crashing sea. Try laying on some food and wine. Strawberries sound cliched, but when they're small and sweet, late in the season, there are few items that size that are sexier. And they'll leave no doubt about your dishonourable intentions.

Get into shape
Yes, of course you need to work on your abs, but you don't need to win any body-building contests - most women prefer a man with a finely muscled, defined body, especially if he's not obsessive about it. Obsession is fine, as long as it’s in a bottle, not in your head. Regular exercise, not to mention soap and water, ought to suffice. There are some blokes who compensate for being fat by packing on muscle. This only works if you're a Hell's Angel. Forget about seeing your biceps in the mirror and concentrate on shared pleasure.

Learn a bit about tantric sex
No need to paint a dot on your forehead and change your name to Rama Yama Dang Ban. If you learn one trick, make it this one. Spend a long time on devoted foreplay. Then start with shallow thrusting, no more than an inch inside her. Do ten of these, then have one deep, firm thrust. Now work your way back, eight shallow and one deep, seven shallow and one deep ... you get the picture. By the time you get to the end of the cycle, she may want to name a street, town or province after you. 

(William Smook)

(Picture: Couple kissing from Shutterstock)

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