The ULTIMATE A-Z Guide To Kinks And Fetishes

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kink and fetish

Now that BDSM is a borderline mainstream, arguably hipster-esque form of sexual behavior, you'd think the world-at-large would be more openly accepting of kinks and fetishes.

At least, I personally believe that the world-at-large should be feeling more openly accepting of them, because from what I can tell, LOTS of people seem to find kinky sexuality pretty damn hot. 

Oddly enough, not everyone seems to agree with everything I personally believe, but the amazing news is — you don't have to take my word for it!

Christian Joyal, from the University of Quebec Trois-Rivieres, recently stated, “The adjective 'abnormal' is judgmental ... Paraphilic disorders are rare because people who practice kinky or atypical sex are virtually all happy with it.” 

When he and fellow researcher Julie Carpentier conducted a survey of 1,040 adults "to see how often they desired or practiced eight sexual behaviors defined as outside the norm" as per the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5), they found that:

  • Almost half (45.6%) of the respondents expressed interest in at least one sexual behavior clinically labeled as deviant.
  • Roughly one third (33%) reported experiencing one of these behaviors at least once.
  • Four of the behaviors were practiced or fantasized about so often it would be difficult to consider them to fall outside of the norm.
  • People interested in submissive sex were also significantly likely to be interested in a more diverse variety of sexual activities.

If you visit an online sex-positive forum, such as Fetlife, you find a group of Janes and Joes co-existing within firm, egalitarian, and respectful boundaries around a HUGELY diverse spectrum of sexual interests. Unlike on most social networks, participants are reminded to be open-minded, non-judgmental, and play nice.

According to the community guidelines, "People don't come to FetLife to be abused ... unless of course that is their kink ... in that case we don't judge."

In celebration of just how much of a freakster I KNOW most of you are inside, here is a tiny teaspoon of a glimpse into the ginormously wide world of kinks and fetishes out there.

1950s household fetish

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1950s Household

Yes, the traditional nuclear family of June and Ward Cleaver is now considered by some to be an actual fetish. In this context, Fetlife said, "a 1950s Household relationships refers to those styled on the 1950s time period: monogamous, heterosexual, male-led relationships. There are also those who practice Reverse (i.e., female-led) 1950s Household relationships as well." 

Aftercare: an essential part of all kinky play

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Aftercare is "a period of time after play during which players check in and re-establish connections with each other," according to Rekink, which "often involves cuddling, sex, eating or drinking to replace electrolytes, discussing the scene and/or checking in. Aftercare is different for everyone, and can also involve alone time or any number of personal preferences." 

Body painting kink

body painting

As per Fetlife's fetish boards, " this is about painting bodies and being painted ... The magic of creating a living canvas is one of the most sensual kinks imaginable." 

Chakra energy play

chakra energy play

"Energy play is a subjective emotional practice that frequently is said to have spiritual and transcendental connotations. Generally speaking the top will seek to stimulate a response from the bottom without the use of physical touch," according to BDSM Wiki.

"Energy play is frequently said to include techniques of: muscle-tension/relaxation, hormonal or sensory stimulation, emotional self programming, Endorphin manipulation through SM techniques to produce a chemical high, repetition, slight of hand/confusion, hypnosis, and stress techniques to create a suggestible state."  


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Tree hugger

Rekink simply describes this as a "sexual attraction to trees."  


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living on the edge

"Edgeplay is a term for BDSM practices that are considered at the edge, inherently more risky, or debated within the community." Rekink said this includes "breathplay, choking, knifeplay, play piercing, bloodplay, fireplay, gun play, and consensual nonconsent."

Figging fetish


"Figging most commonly refers to the act of inserting a piece of fresh, skinless ginger into the anus or rectum. The ginger causes a strong burning sensation in the anus without causing permanent damage, said to be very erotic to the sufferer."

According to Fetlife, "Figging is reputedly an activity common during the Victorian era ... often combined with the practice of whipping or spanking, as this activity would cause the tightening of the anal sphincter. Supposedly, the Victorians felt that a spanking should be received on unclenched buttocks, and figging was a useful practice in the training of the submissive." 

Graphoerotica kink


Graphoerotica fetish groups on Fetlife "discuss the powerful scenes that can occur when words are written onto someone's body." 

Human furniture kink

Human furniture

This Fetlife group is "for all who love being made into furniture and those who love to make others into furniture." 

Intelligence fetish

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smarty pants

Someone with an intelligence fetish "finds intelligence in another sexy, kinky or down-right hot," per Fetlife, "Or the 'Intelligent Kinkster,' who simply enjoys intellectually stimulating discussion of ideas and questions." 

Japanese rope tying

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"Shibari is more aesthetically specific than western bondage, and uses a series of designated length and diameter ropes," According to Rekink. "In the recent world of rope bondage, Shibari has been adapted and combined with a more western style, and the two are often seen used together.

The word 'Shibari' means 'to tie' or 'to bind.'" 


Photo: Tumblr

"Knismolagnia is a fetish where sexual arousal is produced through tickling. This term stems from the word knismesis which describes a light, tickling sensation."

Kinkly states that "people may experience knismolagnia when they are being tickled or by watching someone else get tickled. Knismolagnia is also known as titillagnia. Foot and armpit fetishes are related to knismolagnia because they involve ticklish body parts." 

Loud sex fetish

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Loud sex

Agrexophilia is a "fetish for having other people know about your sexual activities."

Creative Loafing notes, "this can include people with agoraphilia, those who like to have loud sex, exhibitionists, people who like to put their homemade sex tapes online, or those who simply like to brag about their conquests." 

Monogamy fetish

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Monogamy groups on Fetlife are for those who "worry less about defining it and more about celebrating our choices, our successes, and frankly, even our failures. In short, this is about enjoying monogamy as one wonderful choice among many!"


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Nyotaimori fetish

Nyotaimori -- Japanese for female body presentation and often referred to as body sushi -- "is the practice of eating sashimi or sushi from the body of a woman, typically naked."  

Fetlife clarifies that "Nantaimori refers to the same practice using a male model. This sexual fetish is a subdivision of food play. As a result of being served on a human body, the temperature of the sushi or sashimi comes closer to body temperature."

Orgasm control fetish

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orgasm control

"This practice involves conditioning to gain control of a submissive's orgasms through verbal or other signals, and may include control of the initiation of coming by a signal, as well as the inability of the subject to come without a signal."

Fetlife specifies, "this is not about orgasm denial, it is about control by the dominant partner. This is not about a subject learning to do what a Dominant wants, it is about gaining control below the level of the subjects's conscious control of his or her own body."


Photo: Buzzfeed

"The ability to climax or orgasm from mental stimulation or fantasy without any genital contact or stimulation," according to Kinkly.

"This is also referred to as a 'psychic orgasm.'" 

Queening fetish

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Queen fetish

Queening is another name for the less regal-sounding term, "facesitting," as practiced between a Dominant female (Domme) and her submissive in order to "evoke an erotic humiliation and sense of control over someone" according to Fetlife.

RACK (Risk Aware Consensual Kink)

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risky business

Rekink explains, “this acronym was born as a response to SSC (Safe, Sane and Consensual), as a consent-culture and safety-oriented attitude that could include more inherently risky play in it’s scope." 

Sleepsack fetish

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Sleep sack

"People who have taphephilia become aroused by closed spaces that most people would find claustrophobic. Usually taphephilic people are considered submissive because being enclosed without being able to escape induces the feeling of helplessness."

Kinkly continues, "Being enclosed also changes a person's breathing, which can give the feeling of being high. People act out this paraphilia by being put into latex or vinyl sleepsacks, boxes, bags, gas masks and other fetish wear."  

Transformation fetish

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A fetish for transforming or changing people into other people, objects, or creatures. This sexual fantasy is often limited to depictions in hentai and other forms of animated porn, though some body-modification enthusiasts do try to physically transform themselves into non-human creatures."

Creative Loafing further notes that "sub-genres of transformation fetish include: human-animal TF, object TF, gender TF, cock TF, and combining TF."

Urethral sounding kink


Sounding refers to urethral stimulation of either males or females. Many women have reported that urethral stimulation is far more powerful as an erotic stimulant than vaginal penetration.

The moderators of one Fetlife group said they "believe that this is an overwhelmingly powerful and rewarding sensual experience for females and have started this group as an attempt to facilitate more females trying it."

Vacuum bed fetish

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Vacuum bed

"A vacuum bed is a bondage device [consisting of] two sheets of latex held together by a frame, and a vacuum is used to remove the air between the sheets and immobilize the person. The person breathes through a tube, a hole, a gas mask or has his or her head completely out of the bed."

According to Kinkly, "the vacuum bed combines many different fetishes: latex, bondage and sensory deprivation, among others ... The vacuum bed also enhances certain sensations like percussion (spanking, flogging, etc.), stroking and vibrations. A vacuum bed requires several safety precautions because of the risks of suffocation." 

Wolf play

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Just one of many variations of pet play, which also includes pony play, puppy play, kitten play, bunny play, or other types of animal play discussed on Fetlife.


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sex with strangers

"Xenophilia refers to a person's intense attraction or affection toward strangers or foreigners. It comes from the Greek word xenos, which means 'unknown' or 'stranger.'"

Kinkly notes that "a few social scientists say that xenophilia is rooted to cultural cringe. This is the feeling that another's culture is more superior than one's own."

Yaoi fetish


"Yaoi is a type of anime, manga, or fan fiction that originated in Japan which centers on male-on-male sexuality. The term comes from the Japanese phrase 'Yama nashi, Ochi nashi, Imi nashi' which translates as 'no climax, no meaning, no point.'"

Kinkly adds that "Yaoi is typically created by women and aimed at women although it has some male fans. It should not be confused with 'Bara' which is aimed at a gay male audience."

Zentai fetish

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Zentai groups on Fetlife are "for people who like to wear, be covered in, bound by and otherwise enjoy" lycra full-body suits.