Love Is In The Air (And Lust Is Everywhere)

Valentines Day

Love Is In The Air (And Lust Is Everywhere)

You may have noticed that we’re big fans of anything that gets the blood pumping to all the right places. Throughout history, humans have been drinking, eating, and reciting incantations over scores of objects from their natural world, hoping to attract love and boost libido. For our second favorite holiday of the year, we’ve rounded up some of the best naturally erotic and amorous outils d’amour that you just might be able to reach out and touch, right from where you are. 
Natural Aphrodisiacs Garlic
Ah, the stinking rose – while garlic breath can certainly dampen an intimate moment, the aphrodisiac qualities of these flavorful, aromatic bulbs are significant. Garlic is widely believed to have wide-ranging health benefits, including weight loss, increased immune system, increased respiratory health, and lower cholesterol levels. While increased overall vitality can certainly lead to more friskiness between the sheets, garlic has a particular chemical property that directly promotes erotic bliss. Garlic contains high levels of allicin, which is a known vasodilator. This means the blood vessels become wider, promoting increased blood flow, higher energy, endurance, and increasing the function and sensitivity of all the body’s erogenous zones.
natural aphrodisiacs
Pearls have long been regarded as mystical. Some believed them to be the tears of Eve. In ancient Greek and Roman cultures, pearls were closely related to Aphrodite, known as Venus by the Romans, the goddess of love. Indeed, Greek mythology has it that Aphrodite was born when Kronos, the father of Zeus, severed the testicles of his own father, Ouranos, and threw them into the sea. This brought forth a boiling sea foam from which Aphrodite emerged in a shower of pearls. Building on this wonderful - if somewhat unsettling - story, the Romans referred to Venus as “pearl” or “pearl of the sea,” and her pubic hair was called the “pearl gate.” More recent folklore had it that placing a pearl under a woman’s pillow during the act of love would help her conceive.

Given the association with these powerful goddesses of love, pearls came to symbolize not only love and eroticism, but also feminine power. The clearest example of this is the frequent depiction by Western painters of Cleopatra, an incredibly powerful and wealthy female leader, wearing pearls. Unfortunately, Cleopatra was derided by these patriarchal figures as a symbol of lust and vanity, perhaps adding still more to the pearl’s association with sexuality and eroticism.

In many contemporary cultures, pearls still connote wealth and power and have been used as a way of telegraphing female power. Indeed, the pearl’s resemblance to the moon, and its resulting association with moon goddesses in many ancient cultures, imbue the luminous jewel with a unique ability to transmit a sense of deep, almost magical, feminine power.

In the ancient Mayan civilization, the people honored the papaya tree as the sacred “Tree of Life.” In addition to a host of natural healing properties, papaya has long been recognized as a potent aphrodisiac. Visually, some believe the cut papaya fruit resembles a vagina. As a food, the fruit is naturally rich in alkaloids, known to be a central nervous system stimulant. Papaya also contains high amounts of arginine, an enzyme which stimulates blood flow. Similarly, papayas contain fibrin, which is thought to improve the quality of blood cells and maintain the flow of blood in the circulatory system. These compounds may explain why papaya has been used for centuries as an aphrodisiac for all genders and even to treat male erectile dysfunction. Papaya is also rich in magnesium, which is not only necessary for the production of the sex hormones estrogen and androgen, but also for the neurotransmitters dopamine and epinephrine, powerful complements to a rewarding intimate experience.


Hot peppers have been known as aids to the amorous for centuries. The amount of the compound capsaicin found in a pepper is responsible for its heat and when you consume a very spicy pepper chock-full of capsaicin, the body naturally releases endorphins to block the heat and respond to the pain. A rush of endorphins can feel like a temporary high that improves your mood and decreases stress levels. The heat of the pepper is also thought to increase blood flow throughout the body, kicking sensitivity up a notch. Then there are the physical effects noticeable to a potential partner - the flushed face, plumped lips, racing heart, and small beads of sweat caused by a fiery pepper look much like the signs of lust. Even the ancient Kama Sutra mentions peppers, recommending that a man "anoint" himself with a mixture of the powders of white thorn apple and certain peppers to make a sexual partner "subject to his will" (though the Kama Sutra also says to throw a particular concoction of herbs mixed with monkey excrement on your crush and she won't be given in marriage to anyone else, so some of their recipes can be hard to find at Whole Foods).


History's most famous lover, Giacomo Casanova, purportedly ate 50 oysters for breakfast each morning to increase his sexual stamina. He wouldn't have known this about his slimy breakfast but what made it work is that oysters are rich in zinc, a mineral that increases the production of testosterone which has been linked to a higher sex drive in both males and females.

Figs are packed with flavonoids, polyphenols, and antioxidants. These compounds are believed by many to interact in a way that heightens sexual desire and elevates the pleasurable sensations of sex. Some believe the aroma of fresh figs is particularly intoxicating to women, setting the mood for carnal pleasures.

Throughout history cinnamon has been valued for its medicinal benefits. Anti-oxidant and anti-inflammatory, the delicate but complex spice can also aid the body as a natural aphrodisiac, with subtle warming effects and as a natural source of manganese, a nutrient essential to sexual health and the overall wellness of skin, bones, metabolism, sight, hearing, and the nervous system.


No explanation necessary. (Is it hot in here??) Everyone's favorite suggestive fruit is chock-full of potassium and vitamin B, important in our production of sex hormones, and chelating minerals and enzymes that boost the male libido.

The pomegranate was sacred to Aphrodite, the Greek goddess of love and in mythology it was she that planted the very first pomegranate tree on the island of Kypros so that the tender fruit could spread throughout the world. With its abundant and staining red juice and many seeds, the fruit is associated with the loss of virginity and female fertility.

A stone of unconditional love, rose quartz can range in color from pale pink to deep blushing pink and owes its rosy hue to the presence of manganese, iron and titanium within the stone. One of the most popular crystals in healing, rose quartz is often referred to as the "heart stone," known for its power to attract love and intimacy, as well as its capacity to ease heartbreak and heal emotional wounds. It is thought to facilitate connection, encourage compassion and tenderness, and enhance sensuality. It has been used as a token of love for centuries.

A subtropical wild shrub with yellow flowers and fragrant leaves that has a long history of medicinal uses. Known as a sexual stimulant, there are allusions from nearly 500 years ago from Spanish missionaries recording that Mexican Indigenous people were known to drink an aphrodisiac tea made with damiana and sugar. The theory is that the herb promotes circulation to the female sex organs, increasing sensitivity and arousal. 





Horseradish, or Armoracia rusticana, is prized for its large, white, edible root. When minced or grated, the enzymes from the plant’s cells produce allyl isothiocyanate, or mustard oil, which has significant antimicrobial properties.  Horseradish is referenced in Egyptian writings as far back as 1500 B.C.E. The ancient Greeks cultivated horseradish for its aphrodisiac properties and as a rub for joint pain and rheumatism. According to Greek mythology, the Delphic oracle told Apollo, “The radish is worth its weight in lead, the beet its weight in silver, the horseradish its weight in gold.” Throughout the course of history, horseradish has been used as a remedy for asthma, coughs, colic, rheumatism, scurvy, toothache, ulcers, venereal diseases, and cancer. It is a powerful stimulant, whether applied internally or externally as a rub. For practitioners of contemporary homeopathic medicine, horseradish is thought to renew strength and vitality after sexual exhaustion.



Aside from the obvious allusions to shape, coconut oil is believed to possess powerful aphrodisiac qualities, specifically that it promotes and restores the libido.  Coconut water has similar levels of electrolytes as found in the human bloodstream, and may improve the quality of blood flow to promote vitality and libido. 



Peppermint has long been thought to stimulate sexual desire, particularly in women. In ancient Greece the philosopher Aristotle thought mint such a potent aphrodisiac that he warned Alexander the Great not to let his soldiers partake of any while on crusade. Other ancient cultures believed merely inhaling the scent of peppermint could bring erotic and arousing dreams to women. Peppermint, or mentha piperita, contains high concentrations of menthol, which produces an arousing cooling sensation, and methyl acetate, which imparts the herb’s signature scent. These compounds combine to increase concentration and focus, while tantalizing the body. Some say peppermint’s heady aroma, stimulating effects, and its complement of vitamins and nutrients can result in more intense and powerful orgasms in women.






Tension-relieving and antidepressant, rose has been used since ancient times for love potions, sensual elixirs, and sexual tonics. Cleopatra is said to have bathed in rose water and covered her bed in the soft, pungent petals. The allegedly tempting Egyptian queen didn't know it but rose contains phenylethylamine – the same chemical produced by the brain when you're falling in love, that helps to reduce stress and anxiety, calming negative emotions that can get in the way of arousal.





Though scientists have found that to have any real sexual benefit you would need to eat in excess of 25 pounds of chocolate in one sitting (thereby probably negating the need for aphrodisiac qualities) there are small amounts of tryptophan and phenylethylamine in chocolate, both loosely associated with arousal and stimulation.



Frankincense essential oil has been used in rituals, cosmetics, and perfumes for thousands of years and is known to be an aphrodisiac because it helps to balance hormone levels and reduce mood killing anxiety and fatigue.



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