Suppose your sex life needs a boost. The kind that heightens your senses and frees you from mental and physical burdens like life’s mundane distractions. If this is the case, you may find solace in cannabis. But which products are best?

The right cannabis products can help you reach this awakened state more readily. And, happily, many of these products are not hard to come by. Indeed, over the past few years, the cannabis market has exploded with topicals, potions, flowers, lubes, and edibles. Read on to find out which cannabis products make the best bedmates.

History of cannabis and sex

Sociologists have observed the association between cannabis and sexual pleasure throughout the ages. For example, in seventh-century India, cannabis was featured in the Kama Sutra and used in tantric sex rituals. Likewise, in pre-Christian Scandinavia, cannabis was employed to honor the pagan love goddess Freya. Inhabitants believed that cannabis held erotic powers and those who consumed it would be given the seductive attributes of the love goddess [1].

Even in Victorian Europe many believed that cannabis consumption made for happy marriages, while in the US, cannabis was promoted in the Pharmacopeia from the late 1850s to 1940s as an aphrodisiac. The publication featured cannabis pills and extracts that were recommended by doctors for “stimulating the sexual appetite” and countering the lack of sexual desire, a condition they referred to as “sexual torpor [2].”

But in the late 1930s, during the era of “Reefer Madness,” the US Federal Bureau of Narcotics commissioner made public claims pegging cannabis use as a means of turning women into nymphomaniacs who sought “relations with Negros and entertainers. [5]” This sexist and racist rhetoric was part of what led to the criminalization of cannabis, ultimately resulting in its designation as a controlled substance.

Many forms of cannabis have now been decriminalized and certain cannabis-derived products are available for widespread use [3], including products that enhance sexual pleasure. 

What is the endocannabinoid system?

The endocannabinoid system (ECS) is a network of chemical signals and receptors operating throughout the human body. It appears to be important for many aspects of human functioning; the ECS has a unique relationship with cannabis because of the interplay between the endocannabinoid receptors and the cannabinoids found in cannabis.

Our body’s natural receptors get stimulated by our endogenous endocannabinoids: the molecules that have a structural similarity to molecules in the cannabis plant. These cannabis-like molecules affect our sensations, functions, and perceptions. Similarly, the effects of the cannabis plant take place when molecules (cannabinoids or phytocannabinoids) mimic our bodies’ cellular mechanisms and engage with the cannabinoid receptors [4].

Cannabinoid receptors include both CB1 and CB2 receptors and are stimulated by either endocannabinoids (made by our body) or phytocannabinoids (made from plants). These receptors influence neural activity in response to various sensations. CB1 receptors mediate most of the psychoactive effects of certain cannabinoids, whereas CB2 receptors are associated with other responses [5].

Learn more in the Guide to CBD.

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What is the entourage effect?

A theory originally proposed in 1999, the entourage effect describes a mechanism by which cannabis compounds—such as terpenes and flavonoids—work synergistically with cannabinoids to modulate the overall effects of the plant [6], whether those may be mood-altering or not.

For example, the Journal of Cannabis Research explores data representing individual responses to various strains in their relationship to cannabis synthesis. Their conclusions describe how flavor perception could represent a reliable marker to indirectly characterize the psychoactive and other effects of cannabis via the entourage effect [7].

Cannabis products that are full-spectrum or broad-spectrum can harness all of the benefits of each compound to enhance the overall pleasurability of the experience. Full-spectrum cannabis products include all or many of the cannabinoids and compounds of the cannabis plant, including up to 0.3% THC. Broad-spectrum products, on the other hand, can contain all the same compounds as full-spectrum, minus the THC [8].

Top cannabinoids for sex

Most experts might agree that the most popular cannabinoids for sex are THC, CBD, and CBG. Certainly, other cannabinoids may enhance your sex life, but they are less fully understood.

How does Delta-9 THC affect sex? Essentially, it can help enhance your sensations and perceptions. Thus, products containing various levels of it can be great with ultra-sensual sex. But for some, even low doses of Delta-9 THC can lead to some paranoia or anxiety. Therefore, it’s important to access the THC content of the product and evaluate how you may personally respond to the cannabinoid before taking it. Remember, if your response to THC is unknown, start low and go slow. Or, if you find its effect too trippy for your taste, CBD is a great alternative. A CBD massage oil, indica or indica-dominant strain, or indica-dominant hybrid strain—versus a sativa-dominant strain— may be less heady and more relaxing.

CBD is thought to promote relaxation. Many people believe it in turn improves their sexual experience. Myriad edibles, topical creams, ointments, and lubricants offer calming options associated with CBD’s effects. For example, certain CBD products are popular with women and they find that they can be a pleasurable addition to the bedroom [10].

Alternatively, CBG has become a popular ingredient in some cannabis products. Some report it gives them feelings of energy. Additionally, there is some evidence that suggests CBG benefits wellness in other ways. 

Check out the Complete Guide to Cannabis and Sex

Edibles and sexual pleasure

According to recent surveys reported by Let’s Toke About Sex, THC edibles have a significant impact [13]. However, before you down a bag of THC gummies in your quest for orgasmic nirvana, consider how much THC is in the product and how your body responds to THC. If all checks out, gummies make for an easy, fun way to get into bed without committing to a higher dose that might be overwhelming. CBD gummies may be a better choice to avoid any psychoactive effects. Additionally, cannabinoid-infused chocolate is always a deliciously romantic addition to any pre-sex picnic.

Prerolls, flowers, and vaporizers, oh my!

Vapes, flowers, and pre-rolls can also help lead to satisfaction. In a study group facilitated by Lioness, cannabis vapes and smokables ranked high in their ability to increase the pleasure among the participants. Notably, the effects of the smoked or vaped cannabinoids tended to kick in faster than edibles, which can be a boon in the bedroom if natural attractions are moving faster than pre-sex rituals [14].

What’s more, flower and vape options offer a wider selection than edibles and topicals, given all of the different plant strains and varieties. With pure flower, you can experience the optimal effects of the entourage effect with all the natural compounds found in the plant. Moreover, a post-sex puff can preclude the possibly awkward moment when you and your partner have reached the zenith of your connection and might not be sure what comes next. Out of that silence, what could be more calming (and cinematically cool) than the ritual of lighting up a fragrant cannabis pre-roll as you let your body settle into its fulfillment? Think Anne Bancroft’s character Mrs. Robinson in The Graduate.

Cannabis topicals and sex

Want to jazz up your sexual experience without eating or smoking? Topicals might be a good choice since they can soothe the body, soften the skin, and increase the kind of sensitivity you might seek. Moreover, topicals incorporated into foreplay can make for a sexy time with massage oils, salves, and lubes rich in cannabinoids.

But be careful if you’re looking for something to use “below the equator.” Lotions and creams are wonderful for certain areas of the body. Still, they are not necessarily advisable to use as lubricants, especially for women who experience frequent yeast infections or vaginal discomfort. Make sure there is nothing in the product that might agitate the intimate corners of your body.

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God’s gift to women: cannabis lubes

Many THC- and/or CBD-infused personal lubricants can make sex especially pleasurable. These products are usually designed to be applied directly to the nether regions. But before you fill your nightstand drawer with weed lube, it’s key to do some research on the products available. Some of the best products contain weed strains or hemp strains with a combination of THC and CBD or sometimes just CBD without THC, delivering cannabinoids and other compounds directly to receptors in the skin.

The legality of cannabis

Fortunately for cannabis enthusiasts, the recent Farm Bills have blazed a trail for widespread cannabis cultivation and commercialization. Now, hemp-derived cannabis products are legally available nationally, even in states that do not have medical or recreational marijuana programs.

The 2014 Farm Bill removed hemp from the Drug  Enforcement Agency (DEA) list of Schedule 1 substances. The Bill made hemp, designated as cannabis with 0.3 percent or less Delta-9 THC, federally compliant and allowed researchers to study its effects and potential therapeutic and medical benefits after almost a century of prohibition.

Four years later, the 2018 Farm Bill allowed the production, sale, and consumption of hemp-derived products. This bill clarified to legal experts that all plant materials and substances derived from legally-defined hemp are federally compliant [16].

Hemp production and consumption is now allowed in 50 states. Under this umbrella of federal legality, hemp is defined as cannabis plants with less than 0.3 percent of Delta-9 THC per dry weight. In contrast, a plant with more than  0.3 percent Delta-9 THC  per dry weight is defined as marijuana, which federal law still treats as a controlled substance on the DEA’s Schedule 1 list. Nonetheless, some states allow medical and/or adult recreational use of cannabis containing much more than 0.3% Delta-9 THC.

Explore and enjoy the process

Remember, at the end of the day, what matters is that you and your partner find joy, pleasure, and harmony through your sexual experiences. Since everyone experiences cannabis uniquely, try out new products with curiosity balanced with a modicum of caution, especially when it comes to THC products. Sexual pleasure is a personal and subjective journey that, at its best, can renew your body and spirit. Ultimately, the best cannabis products can remind you why sex is often referred to as the “life force.”

Medical Disclaimer / Legal Disclaimer – Information is provided for educational purposes. It does not and is not intended to constitute legal advice or medical advice. We attempt to be accurate and up-to-date, but the legality of cannabinoids and the science of cannabis are evolving. The author is neither a legal professional nor a medical expert. Before buying or using any products, you should check with your local authorities and medical providers.


  2. Clarke, R., & Merlin, M. (2016). Cannabis: Evolution and Ethnobotany. University of California Press

Frequently Asked Questions

Every individual is different, so it’s impossible to pinpoint the perfect strain for everyone across the board. Sativa type strains often produce more heady effects while indica strains are often associated with body feelings. Either one may be better for you, and there are unlimited hybrid strains which combine benefits from both. 

Recently published studies found that males and females respond differently to cannabis, which may be attributed to THC’s interaction with different sex hormones [22].