This Is When Brits Are Having Sex… And When They’re Reaching For Toys

The numbers are in.

Happy Valentine’s Day!

Whether you’re single or shacked up, it’s hard to escape Valentine’s Day. From the balloons in shops, the needlessly-long Insta captions about partners to every other company emailing you to tell you that, yes, they have also managed to find a way to wedge the day into their marketing calendar, it’s everywhere.

However, even if you aren’t much of a lover of this mushy day, you might still be wondering — today and everyday — just how often people are having sex and if they are, what are they up to? Is everyone doing missionary with the lights off or is your milkman actually a swinger with a regular meet-up schedule?

Thankfully, if you’ve had these sordid thoughts, researchers at Durex UK have taken one for the team and asked the nation exactly what they’re getting up to, and when. The results are far more saucy than we expected.

The team surveyed 2,000 UK adults from Opinium Research from 09 January 2024 - 12 January 2024 to learn more about the sex habits and preferences of Brits.

The sex schedules of Brits

If you’ll be cosying up with your favourite self-love toy tonight, know that you’re alone. In fact, according to the data, Valentine’s Day is one of the one of the busiest days of the year for sex toy usage in the UK, with 1 in 6 people reaching for their favourite toy today.

As for the rest of the week?

Well, we like to keep busy, it turns out. Perhaps unsurprisingly, the nation’s favourite time to have sex is between 9 and 11pm on Saturdays but, for those that enjoy a little ‘alone time’, Wednesday is the most popular time for some self-care.

Maybe it’s time to retire the term ‘hump day’ since we’re actually doing anything but on Wednesdays and the term itself is, well, annoying.

But, how much sex are we actually having?

According to the research, in the last year, the average sexually active UK adult has had sex 81 times, given or received oral sex 50 times, masturbated 67 times, and had anal sex 16 times.

Meanwhile, nearly one in five 18% sexually active UK adults have had either a threesome, or multi-partnered sexual activity – of those, one in ten (10%) have one at least once a year.

We’re also a surprisingly kinky bunch with over half (53%) of Brits saying they feel the most aroused at the beach and 1 in 5 of us have had sexual intercourse while out in the countryside. Ooer.

All the outdoor shagging and horn aside, at home, we still do love good ol’ missionary. It’s the nation’s favourite position, closely followed by doggy style. We love simple, deep penetration and what’s wrong with that?

Finally, we are a nation of sex toy lovers and the taboo around them appears to be out the window

Almost 1 in 10 (9%) of sexually active people use sex toys at least once a week, with just over a quarter of people (26%) using them at least once a month.

Men use them more frequently than women with 10% claiming to use them at least once a week, versus 8% of women.

Of those who do use sex toys, almost half (48%) use them for sexual intercourse and 41% use them for solo masturbation. However, this does rise to more than half of women (57%) using them for solo masturbation.

In fact, of those that have had sexual intercourse and use s-x toys, more than half (52%) have used a vibrator during sex, over a fifth (22%) have used a cock ring and 17% have used a clitoral suction stimulator.

We love to get a little help from our toy-friends, it seems.

Nikki Hayward, Category Marketing for Durex comments: “At Durex, we want people to enjoy maximum pleasure when it comes to sex, enjoying it wherever, whenever and with whoever they like. Our data shows that as a nation, our sex schedules vary hugely, and nothing is out of bounds, so we want to enable people to get the most out of sex, whatever their preferred style.”