The Black girl’s guide to dirty talk - 'When you’re confident, it becomes easier'

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The internet defines dirty talk as ‘the practice of using graphic word imagery to heighten sexual pleasure before and during sexual intercourse’.

For some, it’s a sexually pleasing language that allows us to take on different personas, lose ourselves and explore our ‘naughty girl’ selves – all in an effort to excite our partners, as well as reach our highest sexual peak. So, for those that have never explored dirty talk but are aroused by the thought of tapping into this erotic art, don’t worry – help is here!

Mind f*ck

“It all starts with the mind,” says social dating and pleasure coach Makabelo Motaung, stressing that the brain is the most powerful sexual organ.

“It’s more powerful than what has been deemed, biologically, as our sexual organs. If you’re not in a good mental state, chances of you being sexually stimulated are very slim because the brain is the most sexually reactive organ and the heart of our sexual drive,” she says.

This, Motaung adds, is where the art of dirty talk lies, as it activates the brain quicker. “Who this ‘talk’ comes from and the context become key in how our brains react. If a stranger calls you names, your immediate reaction is anger. But, if it’s your partner or someone you’re intimately attracted to, the dirtier, the better,” Motaung says.

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Comfort and consent are the foundation of this sexual art, Dr Tlaleng Mofokeng explains. “There’s no science behind dirty talk. However, when you’re comfortable and confident, it becomes easier to get into,” she says.

Dr Mofokeng adds that when you’re confident and you engage in consensual intercourse, body anxieties and reputational issues diminish — moving you into a world where your sexual satisfaction becomes a priority. “It’s important to also note that people respond differently to language,” Dr Mofokeng says.

Our ‘sex-shunning’ heritage

“Many Black women’s sexual reservations mostly stem from our backgrounds. We were taught from a young age that sex is about pleasing a man and that our bodies are for their consumption,” Dr Mofokeng explains.

“This is how culture and patriarchy continue to indoctrinate us as women,” she continues, adding that we don’t have any inheritance of sexual experiences or sexual language, so we figure things out on the streets.

“If you get caught or are heard by an elder using what they believe is profanity or sexual language, you either get into trouble, shamed or labelled in a certain way,” she states.

She also acknowledges that we grew up being made to feel ashamed of our bodies, and this pushed us to start questioning what’s wrong with being sexual and the organs found between our legs — something we carry into our adult lives.

“Anything that’s sexual was associated with evil, and because of the shame that hovered over sex, we were never given an opportunity to feed our curiosity, because you couldn’t discuss this with anyone,” Motaung explains.

Our sex-shunning background, both Dr Mofokeng and Motaung agree, continues to be a barrier to our sexual exploration, as many of us fear the shameful labels.

Dirty talk is not only for ‘perverts’

“Sex is supposed to be dirty, erotic and fun. It’s not just an expression of love, as created in the movies — sometimes one needs to just get dirty. This is why a movie like 50 Shades of Grey was welcomed, because it captured an experience that most of us desire and long for. We want the kind of passion where sex is not calculated or governed, and where it’s just unstructured and messy,”  Motaung continues.

The art of dirty talk, she explains, is about vocalising what you want.

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Know what you like and what you don’t

“Understand your body. Know what you want, what you’re comfortable with and what you do not like,” Dr Mofokeng advises.

Being comfortable with talking dirty and loving your body, she continues, will enable you to introduce dirty talk into your relationship. She recommends that we first practise speaking dirty to ourselves. In this way, we’ll figure out what we’re comfortable with and what makes us feel good.

“It’s very important to own your sexual pleasure. Men don’t outsource their pleasure to us, so we need to learn the same. And, by practising we’ll eventually master the art of pleasuring ourselves and being comfortable,” Motaung adds.

“We’re so afraid to ask for what we want and desire, but we claim to be individuals that seek independence. The trick is to start to learn your needs, even the smallest ones, and acquaint ourselves with words that we’re uncomfortable with,” Motaung says.

Dirty talk in vernacular

“We’ve given so much power to the English language, and in so doing created these little offensive scenarios. We find saying something in English more palatable than when landed in our vernacular languages,” Motaung explains.

We need to start owning our home languages and the various ways of expressing our sexuality through them without shame. “This can be extremely beautiful, as one can orgasm from the power of these words,” she says.


1. Don’t have expectations. If your partner is shocked when you use dirty words the first time, don’t think you’re the problem. They probably still need to own that part of themselves. So, give them time. Remember not to worry about the other person more than you. Worry about how dirty talk will make you feel. Sex is about putting yourself first.

2. Don’t be ashamed to describe your feelings and desires. Vocalise these and ask your partner what they’d like to do to you. Using text can also help when you’re a newbie to the act of talking dirty – and in the long run, you’ll start being more comfortable.

3. Drop your ‘good girl’ obsession. Take on different personas and bring your fantasies to life through naughty words.

4. Allow yourself to experience. Find someone you can practise with, and don’t be afraid to ask for help from friends. Their dirty talk techniques may help you get a little more comfortable when introducing this into your sex life.

5. Find a language that exists in your world. You don’t have to mimic another person’s language – what works for them might not necessarily work for you.

6. Do use text and videos messages to deliver your dirty notes. And if words fail you, Google song lyrics that will help you express your desires and needs more explicitly.

7. Start labelling how you feel sexual words. Try to not sugar-coat your true desires.

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