Women Share the Unconventional Things That Turn Them On


Art by Wit & Delight

When it rains on hot tar—that potent, steamy smell. Red Christmas lights on in a dark room. Occasionally sticking my finger in the opening of a bloomed peony or the tight center hole of my ponytail. The tightly closed buds of a peony, all of its petals so carefully wrapped. When a man is driving in reverse and puts his hand on the headrest to see behind him. Calm women. Angry women. Backpacks. The moment between lightning and thunder where you anticipate the rumble.

All turn-ons. Every single one of them.

Some of these turn-ons may be simple pleasures. They’re nothing but moments in life where our senses rise and we feel a churning of gut energy. Simple pleasures boost happiness. They get us excited. They’re another type of turn-on. They’re unconventional.

Case in point? Getting hot and bothered doesn’t need to be about men or women. In many circumstances, sex can be about how we enjoy living. In that, unconventional (and simple) things can turn us on. We are humans. Our senses are little feelings tentacles. They feed the fire of life. You’re not weird for finding sexual desires in random things. Foods, smells, nature, sounds, seasons. It’s all about the simple pleasures. Exploring the world; letting it come to us in beautiful bursts of desire, is how we can enjoy a fulfilled life, after all.

Getting hot and bothered doesn’t need to be about men or women. In many circumstances, sex can be about how we enjoy living. . . . Exploring the world; letting it come to us in beautiful bursts of desire, is how we can enjoy a fulfilled life, after all.

So, I asked my fellow ladies on Instagram (a special selection of dudes answered, too) to share their unconventional turn-ons and let their freak flags fly. A few quick themes: rich smells, gut-quenching sounds, and nature. Nature really turns us on, folks, and I love it! That’s what springtime is all about anyway. Here’s to the ones who hear leaves rustling for the first time since winter and feel butterflies down under.

Let’s unpack the unconventional things that get us revved:

  • I get weirdly turned on by repetitive noises that sound like a squeaky bed.
  • The sound of fingernails scratching on a short beard.
  • People with low voices.
  • Men holding cats.
  • Ankles. Love a good skinny ankle.
  • When you walk past a house and the smell of its dryer exhaust wafts into your path.
  • Rain hitting windows.
  • Swimming in the rain. Feeling, hearing, and seeing the rain dance across the water.
  • The first snowfall. Pure magic.
  • The crackling you hear when you put on the vinyl record.
  • There is something about a slow yoga flow from down dog to up dog that feels sensual.
  • When a guy I’m crushing on thinks I’m funny and laughs out loud at my jokes.
  • Harry man hands.
  • Swimming in the middle of the lake alone.
  • Numbers! I have the strangest fetish when numbers align perfectly in my brain and the world.
  • A really strong summer wind on a warm summer day really revs me up!
  • The smell when you blow out birthday candles.
  • This is a little off track—not exactly something that turns me on—but, I notice when I have to pee, I’m more easily turned on. Like, it makes it more sensitive?
  • Walking past a pub and smelling delicious, greasy food.
  • When using a paper cutter and getting that straight fresh cut. Also, the smell of suntan oil.
  • A train horn in the distance at night time.
  • Excellent piano music.
  • Washing machines.
  • When you’re on your feet all day and you finally sit down and rub out all the soreness.
  • The sound of a diesel engine.
  • This is NOT original but Jon X Dany sex scene in Game of Thrones. **fans self**
  • A flower in full bloom. Like, all the way open.
  • Clavicles, collarbones, the nape of a neck.
  • Fresh cut flowers, preferably peonies.
  • Ponds surrounded by lush greenery.
  • When people stick up for strangers. Especially if they’re outside their demographic standing up for a minority or oppressed person.
  • Gasoline—love the smell!
  • The smell of hot pavement after the first few minutes of a rainstorm. Getting into a sun-warmed car on a chilly day.
  • When you’re swimming underwater outdoors and the sun hits the water just right.
  • A woman in a hot power suit and a camel-colored trench with heels. I’m quite straight but when I see anyone slaying an androgynous look, I’m shook.
  • The noise of a wine bottle uncorking.
  • Veins on forearms. What is that? Why do I want you to stroke me with them?  
  • Men working with tools.
  • The very first scent of strong coffee brewing.
  • When a harmony of strings glides smoothly down via pitch shift. Case in Point? Playground Love, by the band Air.
  • Being sweaty in hot yoga.
  • Dark, cloudy skies.
  • Freshly cleaned sheets and towels.
  • Lilac season. (Writer’s Note: In Minnesota, lilac blooming season is mid-May; if you don’t think I’m going to motorboat 100 lilac bundles this season alone, you would be mistaken.)

We aren’t done! Share your unconventional turn-ons in the comments below!

BY Brittany Chaffee - May 18, 2019

Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
May 18, 2019 5:24 pm

hahaha absolutely loved reading this!! I definitely agree with some of these. especially the one about your crush laughing at your jokes. completely leaves me melted on the floor hahaha
I would also say talking to a crush and him losing his concentration cause a dog is walking by hahaha


xoxo <3

May 19, 2019 2:36 am

The way certain men walk.
Men with deep , rich sounding voices.
A very subtle way of treating you nicely…guiding you through a door by gently touching your back.
Watching a man wet shave.

May 20, 2019 1:23 am

When he has that exotic, traveler look – from somewhere Southern Europe like Balkans

December 16, 2022 5:35 am

I Kno just them looking like they have someware import to be is just such a turn on

May 20, 2019 10:44 am

Men in suits.
When my guy tucks a piece of hair behind my ear.
Men who like to cuddle.

May 20, 2019 10:13 pm

A quick and efficient parallel parking job does it for me every time.

June 3, 2019 3:59 pm

Sound of metal hitting each other when a belt is being unfastened. The click of a rice cooker letting you know the fluffy white grains are ready to eat.

June 7, 2019 2:31 pm

You see! No individual is alike … Each one has got their own turn on’s

June 19, 2019 7:10 pm

Some of these are amazing to read. For me, it’s the scent of petrol and new paint. Smell of Old spice after shave too.

January 6, 2021 7:23 pm

no wonder guys can’t see any woman’s “signs”, their brains and what turns them on are just crazy!! LOL

i came here to try to find out WHY unconventional things turn people on, but I ended up finding gold instead

November 13, 2021 10:23 am

Werid I know and I haven’t seen it mentioned anywhere else but…. I love bad breath. Or when women tell me my breath is bad or just talking about bad breath with attractive women. It seems in itself a taboo subject in itself but yeah morning breath just can’t get enough when my gf wakes up first thing she does is breathe right in my face!

November 14, 2021 3:27 pm
Reply to  Holly

I love to continue to hear about the funny things that get us revved up 🙂 They don’t make us weird! They make us unique and prove we are messy, beautiful humans!

December 16, 2022 5:33 am

Scottish accent and a man rolling up his sleeves mum mum mum perfect like if both was mixed together I whould have like a instent almost orgasam

Most-read posts:

Did you know W&D now has a resource library of  Printable Art, Templates, Freebies, and more?

take me there 

Arrow Alone

Get Our Best W&D Resources

for designing a life well-lived


Arrow Alone

the latest

Thank you for being here. For being open to enjoying life’s simple pleasures and looking inward to understand yourself, your neighbors, and your fellow humans! I’m looking forward to chatting with you.

Hi, I'm Kate. Welcome to my happy place.











follow us on instagram @witanddelight_