PinkCherry

This page might contain affiliate links from brands we trust (links in red and banners). We receive compensation when you purchase through them, at no cost to you. This practice helps us to keep this website running for you.

Chemical Play in BDSM

chemical-play-in-bdsm.jpg

At the risk of disappointing some readers, we should specify that “chemical play” does not refer to chemicals which are consumed, smoked, or snorted. Instead, it refers to using chemicals to create sensations on the skin, to one effect or another.

Chemical play may sound exotic, but it’s actually one of the first concepts you get introduced to if you shop your local erotic adult toy shop. Even the occasional store at the mall will carry scented body oils, flavored lubrication, and other concoctions intended to be used on the skin. They’re a remarkably low-maintenance activity for the Dominant partner; all you have to do is rub the stuff on and watch the effect. Here, we’ll talk about the wide world of chemicals, and how to play with them safely.

Safety First!

Always test a chemical substance before using it in play. The ideal is to apply a dab to the inside of the intended recipient’s elbow. Wait about twenty minutes to experience the full effect. Then remove according to directions – usually you wash off a water-based substance and wipe off an oil-based substance.

Beware: People are wildly different when it comes to chemical reactions. One person may barely feel the effect, while another person will scream and flail. One person’s skin may have no sensitivity, while another will break out in blisters on contact. There is no way to predict this ahead of time, so test every substance every time. Remember that it isn’t too easy to safeword out of a chemical play scene; the stuff is on you and will continue working until you’ve wiped or washed it off. Test it first so you won’t be standing in the shower screaming later.

Follow the safety directions on the packaging for any store-bought substance. In BDSM play, chemical substances are applied to breasts, external genitals, and the butt, sometimes anally. You should almost never introduce a foreign chemical substance into the vagina, as it will disturb the delicate PH balance in there; however, a couple natural examples below can be used safely. You should also never use chemicals on broken skin or open sores. Watch out for any drug interactions if the recipient is taking prescription medication or undergoing treatment for a skin-related disease.

Chemical play may not be for everybody. Some people are just too sensitive, have allergies, break out in hives, or have other physical problems that complicate things too much. So be prepared to leave this kind of play off the menu if your partner just can’t handle it.

Ways to wash off various oil-based chemical substances include: baby shampoo, milk, aloe vera, or olive oil. Do not use water to wash an oil-based substance, as water will just spread the stuff around.

Menthols and Liniments

The most common form of chemical play involves application of a store-bought cream. These are usually sold as “sports creams” for athletic injuries. These creams and ointments are intended to relieve muscle cramps and arthritis aches, but in large doses to sensitive skin areas produce a hot, burning sensation. Sports creams may contain any one of methyl salicylate, benzoin resin, menthol, or capsaicin.

Most sports creams have a delayed effect that gradually builds up. Some start out feeling cool, then proceed to a deep heat sensation. Rub enough into the skin, and it will feel like it’s on fire. The intended effect, in medical parlance, is a “counter-irritant,” with the idea that you’d apply this stuff to a sore spot, and the extra heat sensation overrides the nerves in the area and dissipates the pain.

Sports creams are perfect for bondage play, since the submissive is restrained and at the Dominant’s mercy. They add spice to “corner time” time-outs, giving the submissive something else to suffer through while they await their release. After a mild spanking, sports creams rubbed on the buttocks will make the burn extra sharp, but again, don’t do this after a hard caning or anything else which caused a nasty bruise or an abrasion.

Capsaicin and Other Hot Stuff

Just like sports cremes, some BDSM players use cinnamon and capsaicin in substances for play. The same general rules for using sports cremes applies to cinnamon and capsaicin too. Many BDSM supply stores sell cinnamon oil, capsaicin cream, peppermint oil, and other concoctions. When in doubt, you should try to use the substance made for this purpose by professionals, since at least it’s made to a controllable potency and comes with safety directions.

The more adventurous may try culinary versions of these substances. You should only do this if you know the proper dilution before using it on the skin. Many will be surprised to find out that a bottle of pepper oil or peppermint extract will send them to the hospital – that’s because it’s intended to be used in cooking, at a rate of a quarter teaspoon per batch.

And finally, there’s good old peppers. Natural peppers are rated on the Scoville scale, which measures heat sensation from the low hundreds to the hottest seven figures and beyond. Bell peppers rate a 0, jalapenos range from 3,500 to 10,000, serranos rate 10,000 to 30,000, habanero chilis rate between 100,000 and 350,000, and the hottest pepper in the world so far is the Carolina Reaper, rated at 2.2 million Scovilles. Capsaicin is the natural chemical produced by most peppers that give them their hot sensation.

As with anything else in this article, test it on the skin first. Slice the pepper lengthwise and apply the inside surface to the skin. As with creams, use should remain external to the body and away from any mucus membranes. Just about any pepper is safe to introduce anally, since the anus is one part of the body built to handle anything you can safely eat in the first place.

Remember that peppers’ heat is due to natural oils, so follow the same recommendations for oils when washing off pepper residue.

Figging

Figging is the practice of using a plug made of pure ginger root to insert into the anus or vagina. Unlike other chemical play forms here, figging is much milder and generally safer since extreme reactions to ginger is rare.

To fig: Go to the grocery store produce section and buy the biggest size “hand” of ginger root you can find. You won’t use most of it, but you have to carve the root into a plug large enough to insert and handle easily without getting lost. Leave a large base at the bottom and a smooth surface everywhere else, exactly like you were shaping a butt plug or small dildo. You also want to use the ginger fresh, not dried out.

After inserting the ginger plug, the subject will feel the effects after a couple minutes and the sensation will ramp up to about a half hour when it starts leveling off. After this, you can even re-carve the ginger to a smaller size, exposing a fresh layer for more fun. Figging is a great way to liven up any bondage play or corner time discipline. Its traditional use is in corporal punishment; insert it into the submissive’s bottom before giving them a spanking and they won’t clench their butt to avoid the cane, since this squeezes more juice out of the ginger and makes it burn more.

Ginger is wonderfully versatile stuff, and it even comes in extract form. Look for it under the name of “gingerol,” and you’ll find bottles of it for sale.

You can find a variety of sex toys for a great price HERE.

Other Substances and Irritants

We’re getting into some strange territory here, but occasionally you’ll hear about BDSM players using a plant called “stinging nettles.” The stinging nettle is a herbaceous perennial flowering plant that grows as a weed all over the world. The plant, on contact with skin, makes a burning sensation by shooting tiny hairs off its surface which inject histamine into the skin. This doesn’t sound like the kind of thing you’d want to stuff handfuls of into your pants, but in fact some claim stinging nettles are even safe to eat.

We’ll not recommend this as this is a folk practice often discussed on the Internet, but rarely seen in person. As it is, one shouldn’t just grab random plants in nature to use for play unless they know how to tell poison ivy and other harmful herbs from everything else.

Another practice sometimes mentioned on the Internet is using toothpaste. Toothpaste, handily enough, comes in both minty and spicy flavors, so it stands to reason that people would try using this as a cream substitute. But we’re not going to recommend it because these are mostly too weak to feel any effect on the skin, or may be harmful to delicate skin with unintended side effects. For that matter, if you’re too poor to afford a sport cream, you should probably save your toothpaste.

Conclusion

Chemical play is one form of BDSM where research really pays off. You should know as much as possible about what you’re doing, and maybe even find a kink-friendly medical professional to consult. However, once you’ve mastered chemical play, it’s a handy, versatile little tool in your toolbox which you can always break out to spice things up – sometimes literally!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

four × two =

Top