The Best Pills to Increase Male Sex Drive & Libido

Kristin Hall, FNP

Reviewed by Kristin Hall, FNP

Written by Geoffrey Whittaker

Published 05/31/2018

Updated 06/26/2023

Your sex life: The one place where opportunities for optimization are always welcome. As a man, your sex drive plays a critical role in how frequently you and your partner have sex, how sexually compatible you feel and how satisfying your entanglements are.

Every man’s sex drive is different. Some guys can go days, weeks or even months without thinking about sex, while others can’t go ten minutes. 

If your sex drive is lower than you want it to be, the problem could be an underlying lack of interest in sex caused by a weaker-than-normal libido (aka sex drive). 

Though recommendations for libido-increasing pills sprawl across the internet, the science behind many of these supplements is lacking. Other options may be less obvious but more effective.

Below, we’ll explain everything you need to know about pills for increasing sex drive and improving sexual performance. We’ll also bust a few myths about common supplements for “boosting libido” and share simple techniques you can use to increase your level of interest in sex and have a more enjoyable time in the bedroom with your partner.

Sex Drive: What Is and Isn’t Normal

Hard fact time: There’s no such thing as a “normal” sex drive for men or women. As we’ve covered in our guide on how often couples have sex, interest in sex can vary hugely from one person to another. 

You shouldn’t panic if you and your partner occasionally go through periods where you just don’t have sex that often. But if you rarely feel interested in sex, or if you find it difficult to have satisfying sex due to issues like erectile dysfunction (ED) or premature ejaculation (PE), it could be a sign that something’s not quite right. 

That signal — and the problems it brings — might have pointed you to libido pills.

What Are the Benefits of Taking Libido Pills?

Libido is a cloudy subject, as it’s regulated by a multitude of issues. Your sex drive might feel “off” because of dietary deficiencies, hormonal imbalances, mental health issues or just the weather.

Depending on what’s causing you to struggle to get it up, different pills may claim to offer targeted relief.

Some natural aphrodisiacs, for instance, claim to boost testosterone or reduce the effects of mental health issues like depression and anxiety that may be spilling over from work or other parts of your life into the bedroom. 

Other natural remedies may not have an explanation, instead relying on buzzwords (like dietary supplement, testosterone booster or horny goat weed) and discreet packaging to sell products.

The supposed health benefits of many natural remedies and supplements aren’t backed up by much science — and many ignore the fact that low libido might be caused by a medical condition that health supplements can’t or won’t address.

Instead, they often just refer to themselves as a “natural male enhancement.”

Male Enhancement vs. Libido Supplements

“Male enhancement” supplements are typically over-the-counter herbal supplements promoted as being able to increase sex drive and improve sexual function. 

Some male enhancement pills also claim to boost penis size, increase ejaculation and generally enhance a man’s ability to have sex. 

As we’ve covered in our guide to the efficacy of male enhancement pills, scientific evidence to support these claims is very limited. More worryingly, many over-the-counter pills for boosting sexual performance are tainted with hidden ingredients, including some that may be harmful.

One reason these pills are so widespread is that, as supplements, they can be sold without a prescription. This makes them a quick, easy-to-access option guys can try without investing any time into a doctor’s visit. 

However, the results usually aren’t impressive, and the risks associated with these products are very real.

Our recommendation? Stick to evidence-based, FDA-approved medications, and leave the male enhancement pills where they belong — on the gas station shelf. 

What Should Men Take to Increase Sex Drive?

So, if male enhancement supplements generally aren’t effective at increasing sex drive and improving sexual function, what products are?

Currently, only a few medications have been proven to increase sex drive or improve aspects of sexual function in men. These include ED medications, over-the-counter and prescription drugs for premature ejaculation and hormonal medications like testosterone.

Some of these medications are only available with a prescription, meaning you’ll need to talk to a healthcare professional before you can use them. 

Proven Options for Increasing Libido

What are the proven pills for libido management and regulation? It really depends on what problems you’re trying to deal with.

For instance, a guy struggling with intimacy issues probably doesn’t need testosterone — he needs mental health support to work through those issues. A guy who’s eating nothing but ramen could be experiencing a vitamin deficiency.

Depending on what ails your libido, the following treatments might help you get back into business.

Testosterone Replacement Therapy

Testosterone is the male body’s main sex hormone, as well as the most important hormone for regulating your sex drive.

One of the most common causes of a loss of sex drive is low testosterone — a condition that can develop with age as part of a general decline in hormone levels. 

Testosterone isn’t typically available in pill form. Your healthcare provider may suggest another form of testosterone, such as testosterone cream or a testosterone injection if you have clinically low testosterone levels

Testosterone is a prescription medication, and it can potentially cause side effects. Our guide to testosterone replacement therapy (TRT) goes into more detail about the benefits of testosterone therapy for your sex drive, along with its potential risks and adverse effects. 

Natural Supplements

While we’re not generally fans of natural supplements (see above reasons why), we have to admit that limited studies have shown that certain ingredients might help boost your libido.

Maca, ginkgo biloba, ashwagandha and other natural ingredients mentioned in banner ads may have only shown promise for libido in limited testing or animal testing — and the studies aren’t always high-quality.

The question isn’t whether you can find evidence in a study but whether that study can tell you how to consume the ingredient in a safe and effective way. Most supplement research doesn’t go that far, and the herbal remedies that promise big results haven’t gotten FDA approval for their claims.

That said, here are a few anecdotes that support some popular male enhancement ingredients:

  • Trigonella foenum-graecum (fenugreek) was associated with better libido in a group of 60 men between 25 and 52 over six weeks.

  • L-citrulline oral supplements improved erection hardness in 50 percent of men with ED in a study of 24 patients.

  • L-arginine has been associated with better nitric oxide production and vasodilation.

  • Korean red ginseng was found to be a potential alternative therapy for ED in a study of 45 patients.

Medications for Sexual Dysfunction

We don’t want to repeat ourselves, but it’s worth noting that in the world of proven options for better sex, you can’t discount medications for erectile dysfunction and premature ejaculation.

Sexual enhancement aside, enhancement products often don’t treat sexual dysfunction. If the root of the problem is trouble with sexual arousal, addressing the health problems associated with ED (like high blood pressure, heart disease or obesity) could get you back up and running without “enhancing” anything.

To restore healthy blood flow, the sex pills you’ll want to look at don’t come in packets at convenience stores.

Can Erectile Dysfunction Pills Help Improve Sex Drive & Libido?

Although ED medications won’t directly increase your sex drive, they can have a positive impact on your self-confidence in bed, especially if you often struggle with erectile dysfunction.

Your sexual drive is at least partly psychological, and an increase in confidence could have a real impact on your sexual appetite and level of sexual energy. This confidence boost may result in you and your partner having sex more often. 

Treating ED may also help reduce your risk of recurrent depression, anxiety and other mental health issues associated with ED and PE.

Since sildenafil (the active ingredient in Viagra) became available to the public in 1998, the FDA has approved three other medications for ED:

  • Tadalafil (the active ingredient in Cialis®)

  • Vardenafil (the active ingredient in Levitra®)

  • Avanafil (a newer ED medication available as Stendra®)

We offer several ED medications online, following a consultation with a licensed physician who’ll determine if a prescription is appropriate. 

Related Post: Is Viagra Over the Counter?

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Can Premature Ejaculation Medication Boost Libido?

Premature ejaculation is a common sexual performance problem that can have a negative impact on your self-confidence in bed, potentially reducing the amount of sex you have.

In fact, research has found that men affected by PE are more likely to report low levels of sexual satisfaction, as well as feelings of shame, anxiety and low self-esteem.

Like ED medications, treatments for premature ejaculation don’t appear to directly increase your sex drive. However, by enhancing sexual performance, they could offer a confidence boost that makes you more motivated to have sex with your partner. 

Currently, several options are available for preventing PE and improving sexual stamina. This includes:

  • Topical premature ejaculation treatments. These treatments work by reducing your level of sensitivity during sex, helping you last longer in bed. For example, our Delay Spray for Men uses lidocaine to control sensitivity and increase stamina.

  • Prescription premature ejaculation pills. Some medications, such as sertraline and paroxetine, can give you more control over your ability to reach orgasm and ejaculate when used as needed before sex. 

We offer a range of premature ejaculation treatments online, with prescription products available following a consultation with a healthcare provider.

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Other Tips for Boosting Sex Drive and Increasing Arousal

Various factors play a role in your sex drive, erectile function and general level of sexual performance. These include your physical health, your psychological well-being and the level of connection you feel with your partner.

While medication may help increase your confidence in the bedroom and make you feel more interested in sex, it’s not the only piece of the puzzle. 

In addition to using medication, try the following techniques to improve arousal and boost your sex drive:

  • Get at least seven hours of sleep per night. Sleep plays a critical role in your sexual health. In fact, research suggests that sleep disorders are often associated with sexual performance issues such as erectile dysfunction. Our list of sleep hygiene tips shares techniques you can use to improve sleep if you’re prone to issues like late sleeping or insomnia.

  • If you don’t exercise regularly, start. Regular exercise increases blood circulation throughout the body. Maintaining a regular exercise schedule is also associated with improvements in general sexual functioning. Stay active by getting at least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity physical activity per week, as well as two muscle-strengthening workouts.

  • Eat a balanced, healthy diet. Though the link between specific foods and sex drive isn’t very strong, eating a balanced diet can help you maintain a healthy weight and reduce your risk of common sexual performance issues such as erectile dysfunction.

  • If you smoke, try to quit. Smoking can contribute to sexual disorders in several ways, including by damaging your blood vessels and reducing libido.

  • Avoid using illicit drugs. Many recreational drugs can have a negative effect on both sex drive and sexual performance. Avoid using illegal drugs, and talk to your healthcare provider if you think you may have a substance use disorder.

  • Work on your connection with your partner. Sex is all about trust, and the closer you feel to your partner, the more interested you’ll likely be in having sex with each other on a frequent basis. Try to set aside plenty of time to spend with your partner, whether it’s relaxing at home with a movie or a weekly date night.  

Our guide to natural techniques for improving your erections lists other habits and changes you can make for better sex and a higher quality of life.

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The Bottom Line on Pills to Increase Male Sex Drive

Many factors play a role in your sex drive, from your levels of testosterone to your connection with your partner and past sexual experiences. 

If you’ve recently noticed a loss of libido, a mix of ED medication and changes to daily habits may help reinvigorate your sex drive and improve your relationship.

We offer a range of ED medications and treatments for premature ejaculation online, following a consultation with a licensed healthcare provider who’ll determine if prescription treatments are appropriate for you.

20 Sources

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  6. VIAGRA- sildenafil citrate tablet, film coated. (2017, August). Retrieved from
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  8. Cho, J.W. & Duffy, J.F. (2019, September). Sleep, Sleep Disorders, and Sexual Dysfunction. The World Journal of Men’s Health. 37 (3), 261-275. Retrieved from
  9. How Much Sleep Do I Need? (2017, March 2). Retrieved from ​​
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  11. Jiannine, L.M. (2018). An investigation of the relationship between physical fitness, self-concept, and sexual functioning. Journal of Education and Health Promotion. 7, 57. Retrieved from
  12. How much physical activity do adults need? (2022, June 2). Retrieved from
  13. Mima, M., Huang, J. B., Andriole, G. L., Freedland, S. J., Ohlander, S. J., & Moreira, D. M. (2022). The impact of smoking on sexual function. BJU international, 130(2), 186–192.
  14. U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. (n.d.-a). Definition & Facts for erectile dysfunction - NIDDK. National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases.
  16. Kotta, S., Ansari, S. H., & Ali, J. (2013). Exploring scientifically proven herbal aphrodisiacs. Pharmacognosy reviews, 7(13), 1–10.
  17. Steels, E., Rao, A., & Vitetta, L. (2011). Physiological aspects of male libido enhanced by standardized Trigonella foenum-graecum extract and mineral formulation. Phytotherapy research : PTR, 25(9), 1294–1300.
  18. Cormio, L., De Siati, M., Lorusso, F., Selvaggio, O., Mirabella, L., Sanguedolce, F., & Carrieri, G. (2011). Oral L-citrulline supplementation improves erection hardness in men with mild erectile dysfunction. Urology, 77(1), 119–122.
  19. Hong, B., Ji, Y. H., Hong, J. H., Nam, K. Y., & Ahn, T. Y. (2002). A double-blind crossover study evaluating the efficacy of korean red ginseng in patients with erectile dysfunction: a preliminary report. The Journal of urology, 168(5), 2070–2073.
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Hims & Hers has strict sourcing guidelines to ensure our content is accurate and current. We rely on peer-reviewed studies, academic research institutions, and medical associations. We strive to use primary sources and refrain from using tertiary references. See a mistake? Let us know at [email protected]!

This article is for informational purposes only and does not constitute medical advice. The information contained herein is not a substitute for and should never be relied upon for professional medical advice. Always talk to your doctor about the risks and benefits of any treatment. Learn more about our editorial standards here.

Kristin Hall, FNP

Kristin Hall is a board-certified Family Nurse Practitioner with decades of experience in clinical practice and leadership. 

She has an extensive background in Family Medicine as both a front-line healthcare provider and clinical leader through her work as a primary care provider, retail health clinician and as Principal Investigator with the NIH

Certified through the American Nurses Credentialing Center, she brings her expertise in Family Medicine into your home by helping people improve their health and actively participate in their own healthcare. 

Kristin is a St. Louis native and earned her master’s degree in Nursing from St. Louis University, and is also a member of the American Academy of Nurse Practitioners. You can find Kristin on LinkedIn for more information.

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