What is The Mermaid? Love Island sex positions explained

The soles of the feet of a young couple sticking out from under the blankets at the foot of the bed.  They are entwined, with the toes of the man pointing up and the toes of the woman pointing downward.  The sheets and blankets are white.
Confused about the latest 'Love Island' sex positions? Look no further. [Photo: Getty]

Last night on popular reality series ‘Love Island’, contestants completed a sex positions challenge.

The Speedy Sex Positions Task, which took place last night, is a regular fixture on the show. It involves contestants acting out colourfully-titled styles of intercourse – with previous favourites including The Anaconda and The Eagle.

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To say these positions spark intrigue would be an understatement – during last summer’s ‘Love Island’ series, the Sexinfo101.com website crashed after a rise in search traffic after contestant Curtis revealed his favourite position was The Eagle.

That’s why we’ve asked Annabelle Knight, sex and relationship expert at Lovehoney, to decode last night’s positions.

She said: "Lots of new sex positions tend to emerge when ‘Love Island’ is on. The contestants love to discuss new ways to experiment sexually and that has to be a good thing.

“Most of the positions are quite technical and require a fair bit of athleticism. Give them a try and have fun while you are trying to make them work. And don’t worry too much if they don’t work for you.”

Here’s how to do the positions:

The Mermaid

A newcomer to the ‘Love Island’ challenge, this position is said to be great for G-spot stimulation.

First, the woman lies flat on her back while the male partner kneels. He then lifts her backside to penetrate her while she puts her closed legs over his shoulder.

The Mermaid sex position allows for G-spot stimulation. [Photo: Lovehoney]
The Mermaid sex position allows for G-spot stimulation. [Photo: Lovehoney]

The Butter Churner

This dairy-inspired position has previously been discussed on Love Island, and came up again during last night’s challenge.

It is an “advanced” position, according to Knight, which can also be termed “the squat thruster”.

She explains: “The woman lies on her back with her legs raised above and behind her head. The man then squats and penetrates her from above. The thrusting motion in this position is similar to making butter in an old fashioned butter churner, which is how this position gets its name.”

The Turtle

This position is similar to doggy-style (the favourite position among 34% of Brits, according to Lovehoney research).

It gets its name from the female partner’s position, which involves resting her weight on her knees and folding over, putting her forehead as close to her knees as possible – a position said to resemble a turtle.

The male partner then penetrates her from behind with his legs spread on either side of her.

The Candle

During this position, you are “basically at right angles while having sex”.

This is how it goes: “The woman lies on her back like in the missionary position, but with her pelvic region raised above the ground and her knees are facing towards her head. The man then penetrates her from the front on his knees with his upper body in the upright position.”

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The strength of this position is that it is “high on eroticism and arousal” because the man’s hands are free to carry his partner’s breasts while thrusting, and her hands are free for clitoral stimulation.

Knight’s advice comes with a warning, however.

“You do have to be pretty supple to pull off some of these positions. All the Love Island stars are gym fanatics so I imagine they will have the flexibility to do it without too much difficulty,” she says.

“But be careful if you do not exercise regularly. You can easily pull a muscle by contorting yourself in a way the body isn’t used to. Be careful not to strain your neck out back.”

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