1. Sex With Strangers
Wanderlusty in the best way, “Sex With Strangers” is a travel podcast for the sex and sociology inclined. More than the others, this show explores a shared human experience through various cultural lenses. Episodes follow host Chris Sowa around the world while he looks into geo-specific and universal sexual mores. In Episode 1, he travels to Tokyo and scours the city for its elusive used underwear vending machines. Then he heads out to Laramie, Wyoming to interview a former minister who’s using the gay sex app Grindr, and Mumbai, India, to talk with a trans woman and sex worker named Jasmine. More sex-centered globe trotting follows. Listen here.
“We have a built-in psychology for when we sense someone is being authentic and telling the truth … They’re opening up, and so we open up,” host Kevin Allison once said in an interview. This podcast is all about those stories—the ones that feel risky, vulnerable, and scary to tell—and each has the quality of a curated fireside tale. In the “Getting to Know You” episode, for instance, comedian and writer Jillian Richardson recounts how joining FetLife (a social network for BDSM and kink) and taking a professional domming class helped her overcome her self-consciousness around men. Heartfelt and hilarious, this is one is a treasure for road trips. Listen here.
3. Celestial Sex
“I’m making the podcast that I wish I had when I was 15,” says host Chris Duce, who was brought up Mormon. If you grew up religious and found yourself constantly questioning dogmatic rules and inexplicable mores about sex, this show provides some catharsis. Duce reflects on growing up on a weird mix of Mormon teachings—i.e. being gay is a mental illness, premarital sex is forbidden, and it’s a sin to give blowjobs ever, he says—while secretly listening to Loveline at night. Recently, Duce expanded his range and began interviewing guests who grew up in other strictly religious environments. It’s rare for a podcast to combine sexuality with religion. This one does it well. Listen here.