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This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at Exeter chapter.

Once again, it’s nearly Christmas time! The festive season can be a very sexy time of year, regardless of whether you’re in a couple or you’re single. In this article, I’ll be looking at some Christmas customs from around the world, which show that deep down we all like a little sexiness during this festive period.

  • Mistletoe

Kissing under the mistletoe has become an age-long tradition and is popular all around the world. But mistletoe has been used for different purposes. For example, the ancient Celtic Druids believed mistletoe cured all illnesses and also promoted fertility. Also, ancient Celtic Druids thought that the white berries of mistletoe represented testicles, and that the white juice was ‘oak sperm’. These Celtic Druids thought that cutting mistletoe symbolised castration and it could only be performed as part of a ritual. Therefore, our custom of kissing under the mistletoe essentially echoes Pagan penis worship. Very interesting.

In Italy, women would carry a sprig of mistletoe with them to help them stay fertile. This idea of fertility most likely came from the fact that the tree is an evergreen, meaning it does not wither or die in winter, which probably boosted its reputation for fertility.

  • Pająki

In Poland, people have hung handmade ornaments which are made from straw, eggshells and paper known as pająki. These have been hung from their ceilings over Christmas for many centuries. It was believed that by adding peas or beans to the pająki would increase fertility and bring about marital happiness.

  • Christmas Spells

Christmas spells are popular this time of year as they are used to predict the future. In the Czech Republic, single women can find out if they will marry that year by throwing a shoe over their shoulder on Christmas Day. If the shoe lands pointing towards the door, this means the single woman will be married. Alternatively, the Belarusian method involves lining single women up on Christmas day and placing piles of corn at their feet. A cockerel will be let loose and according to folklore, the women whose corn is chosen by the cockerel means that she will be the first to marry. They also say that if a woman holds up two mirrors together at Christmas, the woman will see the person she is destined to marry behind her. Maybe be careful where you stand…

  • Halušky

Single women in Slovakia bake dumplings known as halušky, which marks the beginning of the Christmas period. According to legend, if you bake the name of your crush into the dumpling, they will be unable to resist you, and you will be married within the next year.

  • Role Swap

In Greenland, wives and husbands swap traditional gender roles on Christmas Eve, so that the husband spends the whole day waiting on his wife. This is so the wife gets to rest before Christmas Day. This idea of swapping connotes the Inuits’ tradition, where they would swap partners to celebrate the winter solstice.

These examples clearly demonstrate that the Christmas period is filled with fertility rites and love magic. These can be found in most traditions around the world, and the above examples are only a few out of the hundreds of different traditions. Hopefully these ideas will help you find or give you an idea of how to add a bit of sexiness to your Christmas.

I'm the Sex and Relationships Editor for Exeter and a third year student studying Classical Studies and English with a passion for literature, art and film!