The COVID effect: How more time at home translated to record porn views

The line between work and play has became blurred during the pandemic.

Credit: Mariia Korneeva / Shutterstock
  • Pornhub measured its daily traffic and reported an average increase of 24% in daily traffic compared to days before COVID-19 lockdown.
  • During lockdown, VR porn has helped breach the gap between social distancing and human connection.
  • There are many reasons it's better to pay for porn than rely on free websites: it reduces exploitation, the quality is better, and you can dive into the world of VR.


Since the breakout of COVID-19, we have seen an undeniable pattern: As countries went into isolation, their use of porn increased. Pornhub, the worlds largest porn website, measured its daily traffic and reported an average increase of 24% in daily traffic compared to days before lockdown. Interestingly, the countries that were slow to isolate showed no increase in traffic until they went into isolation.

To provide an example, Italy, which was one of the first European countries to go into lockdown, saw its use of porn increase by 57% on March 12 compared to previous days. Both the United Kingdom and the United States, however, which were slower to respond to the pandemic, saw an increase in porn traffic later in March, just as they began to tighten social policy.

Porn sites' response to COVID

Several porn sites made their premium features free during the pandemic so that people would be more inclined to stay at home. In addition, a number of websites enabled their verified models to upload content and receive 100% of the income generated from those videos in a bid to help support them during the pandemic.

From the beginning of March, there was a 30% increase of uploaded material from adult models compared to previous periods. Interestingly, more than 1,000 corona-themed videos were uploaded onto Pornhub, many of which received over one million views each. Surprisingly, corona and COVID were searched over 15 million times during this period.

How virtual reality bridged the gap of social distancing and human connection

Porn fulfills a need when there is no one around but it's not quite the real thing so, after a point, it can leave us wanting a little bit more. Unfortunately, COVID is forcing us to wait a significant amount of time before we can really connect with someone, but thanks to virtual reality websites, such as Badoink VR porn, that little bit more was enough for many to stay at home, remain safe and satisfied.

Virtual reality porn is as close to the real thing as you can experience despite being completely alone. You can experience your sexual fantasies as though you are actually in the room watching or even experiencing the actors and actresses before you. When you look around the room or check out your company for the evening, you see it from a point-of-view perspective, which gives it a very realistic feel. It's the perfect bridge between reality and fantasy. Of course, it's no substitute for the real thing, but during lockdown, there are not many ways you can make it better.

Why paying for porn is better for everyone

You may ask, 'Why pay for something when you can get it for free?' but COVID has highlighted the importance of looking after those who keep us going during difficult times. We have a reasonable expectation to pay for things that we use and consume, be it music, movies, and even dating sites, so why should porn be any different? On some level, we recognize that we receive a better quality service or product when we make a financial contribution and doing so prevents the exploitation of others in disadvantaged circumstances.

It's fair to say that few other industries have exploited people more than the adult industry and websites that offer free porn indirectly and perhaps unintentionally contribute to this due to video piracy, and lack of control over how the performers are being treated or rewarded for their effort. Paying for porn means that everyone gets a better deal, so consider finding a site that works for you. You can feel proud of being socially responsible and be sure to get a better quality product, especially if you are stepping into the modern era of virtual reality.

From 1.8 million years ago, earliest evidence of human activity found

Scientists discover what our human ancestors were making inside the Wonderwerk Cave in South Africa 1.8 million years ago.

Inside the Kalahari Desert Wonderwerk Cave

Credit: Michael Chazan / Hebrew University of Jerusalem
Surprising Science
  • Researchers find evidence of early tool-making and fire use inside the Wonderwerk Cave in Africa.
  • The scientists date the human activity in the cave to 1.8 million years ago.
  • The evidence is the earliest found yet and advances our understanding of human evolution.
Keep reading Show less

The never-ending trip: LSD flashbacks and a psychedelic disorder that can last forever

A small percentage of people who consume psychedelics experience strange lingering effects, sometimes years after they took the drug.

Digital illustration of a fractal

Imageman Rez via Adobe Stock
Mind & Brain
  • LSD flashbacks have been studied for decades, though scientists still aren't quite sure why some people experience them.
  • A subset of people who take psychedelics and then experience flashbacks develop hallucinogen persisting perception disorder (HPPD), a rare condition in which people experience regular or near-constant psychedelic symptoms.
  • There's currently no cure for the disorder, though some studies suggest medications may alleviate symptoms.
Keep reading Show less

Mind and God: The new science of neurotheology

Studies show that religion and spirituality are positively linked to good mental health. Our research aims to figure out how and why.

Credit: Dan Kitwood via Getty Images
Mind & Brain
  • Neurotheology is a field that unites brain science and psychology with religious belief and practices.
  • There are several indirect and direct mechanisms that link spirituality with improved mental health.
  • Compassion and love are positive emotions that will make your brain healthier.
Keep reading Show less
Surprising Science

Are lab–grown embryos and human hybrids ethical?

This spring, a U.S. and Chinese team announced that it had successfully grown, for the first time, embryos that included both human and monkey cells.

Quantcast