• Fetish FAQs With Jess: "My Boyfriend Wants to Be Dominated, But I'm Nervous..."

    Fetish FAQs With Jess: "My Boyfriend Wants to be Dominated, but I'm Nervous..." First and foremost, thank you for the fabulous response to our first edition of 'Fetish FAQs With Jess' which launched in July.

    It's been a roaring success and I'm so so pleased that I've managed to help a few people out there in the real world - Kink-Wizard Level unlocked!

    With the UK summer being as brilliant as ever (groan) it seems most of you have been keeping yourselves busy in the bedroom to pass the time (and get some privacy from the kids!) during the holidays.

    In this week's instalment, I'm answering questions on how to find beginner's bondage gear, how to dominate your boyfriend, and how to balance romance and kink in the bedroom.

    Not to mention I make some pretty sweet analogies about sex and food - and who doesn't love both of those things?

    So if you're baffled by bondage, stumped by S&M or flustered by fetishes, read on to be enlightened.

    Don't forget to add a comment with your kink query and your question could be answered next month.



    "I want to start buying bondage gear, but don't know where to begin. How can I tell if a product is suitable for beginners?"

    When exploring fetish play it's important that you start at a level which you and your partner are comfortable with, and progress together steadily. As with all sexual exploration, starting at the beginning is always the best (and the most fun!) course of action, but when it comes to BDSM it's about training your mind as well as your body so taking your time is really important.

    At Lovehoney, we make it as easy as possible to quickly determine whether a product is suitable for your experience level or not. Take a look at the product name and be sure to read the full descriptions for our top tips.

    Speaking more generally though, there are a few things you can look out for when shopping online or in store for beginner's bondage gear.

    1. Restraints

    Noun: A device or object that limits or prevents movement.
    Eg: handcuffs, rope, ball gag

    Bondage Boutique Beginners Soft HandcuffsWhen it comes to finding restraints for beginners, soft material and fastenings that are quick and easy to undo are what you want.

    Materials like Neoprene, faux fur and velvet are ideal as they're cushioned and flexible and won't distract with unwanted rubbing. Velcro and buckle closures are a good choice as they're easy to release and give peace of mind to those who aren't used to being tied up.

    For anyone who's brand new to bondage, we recommend steering clear of restraints that require knots, such as rope or silk ties. Knots can be tricky business (we all know how frustrating a pesky shoelace can be) and anything that requires tying by hand can result in a sticky situation - and probably not the kind you were aiming for.

    We recommend: Bondage Boutique Beginners Soft Handcuffs

    2. Spankers

    Noun: Any implement used to slap your partner during erotic spanking.
    Eg: paddle, flogger, back of a hairbrush 

    When selecting a spanking tool suitable for novices, look for something with a good handle and wide spanking surface to please both first time Dominant (Dom) and submissive (sub) partners. Both paddles and floggers are usually small in size and easy to wield, which makes them ideal for new Doms.

    beginners spanking paddle

    Most paddles feature a wide spanking surface, and many are dual-sided. A wide surface spreads sensation for the receiver, while a dual-sided design offers versatility of impact. Go for a paddle with a slightly padded side for thrilling-but-painless thuddy whacks - something like the Lovehoney Tease Me Satin and Leather Spanking Paddle is perfect.

    Floggers can be a wonderful transition from a feather tickler to something a little harder. Use the fronds (the long tails that come out of the handle) as you would a tickler to tease your lover's skin, and experiment with light flicks and harder whips to gradually increase sensation. Just make sure you choose a flogger with soft wide fronds to keep play suitable for newbies.

    Avoid implements like crops, canes and bullwhips if you're new to bedroom bondage as they have a very narrow spanking surface that delivers intense sensations. These tools are also much larger and require practice to control properly - so best left to experienced players.

    We recommend: Bondage Boutique Silent Spank Furry Paddle or Bondage Boutique Beginners Rope Flogger


    "My boyfriend wants to be dominated but I'm nervous. How can I show him that I take his desires seriously, and achieve sexy domination?"

    If you're not naturally dominant in the bedroom, stepping into a controlling role can be a little nerve-wracking. First of all, don't worry. Part of the fun of being dominant is that you get to take control of what's about to happen.

    Bondage Boutique Intermediate Faux Leather Bondage Kit 5 Piece

    Set boundaries at the very beginning, and make it clear how and when you want to try this sort of play. Explain exactly from the get-go what you are happy (and not happy) doing and always remember to agree a safety word before play.

    The next thing that can be a little scary for a first-time Dom is the idea of being watched doing something you're a little unsure of. The easiest solution? A blindfold! Not only is a blindfold the perfect accessory to BDSM fun for its sensory deprivation benefits, but it also gives you the opportunity to fully immerse yourself in the dominant role, without feeling put on the spot or like you're a performing monkey.

    Instruct your partner to keep their hands where you want them, and practice teasing them all over with your lips and hands. Why not give them a sensual massage while they're restrained? If they move, make a sound or do something else that you've agreed is 'unwanted behaviour', punish them. Punishment can be anything from a slap on the bum to verbal chastisement, or simple a pause in play. It doesn't matter what you use as punishment, so long as you're both in agreement and comfortable with the limits you've set.

    Don't forget, some people are naturally submissive and therefore don't achieve pleasure from dominating their partner. Sexual exploration is a 2-way street, so if after you've experimented you feel that being dominant just isn't for you, have a chat with your partner to see what else you can try for mutual satisfaction.


    "How do you balance bondage sex and romantic 'vanilla' sex in a relationship, and how do you find out which your partner likes best?"

    The first thing to remember is that there's no reason bondage-inspired sex sessions and sensual lovemaking can't be one and the same thing. 'Kinky' and 'Romantic' aren't entirely exclusive of one another. Having said that, sometimes simple, straightforward, spank-free sex that involves nothing but 2 (or more!) naked bodies in a bed is just what the Doctor ordered.

    My top tip for balancing different kinds of sex and not slipping into a mundane routine (yes, even kinky couples fall into routines) is communication and a slight change of perspective on what sex is 'for'. Other than the obvious purpose of baby-making, sex has a multitude of other benefits, from increasing intimacy and trust in your relationship to boosting self worth, being a jolly good workout and an exciting journey of self-discovery. Remembering that sex is as much about discovering yourself and your partner as it is about getting your rocks off will help to keep things fun and fresh. After all, no one who walks the same path every day will ever find anything new.

    Talking to your partner about the what you want to try in the bedroom doesn't always have to involve stepping things up a gear, and can sometimes be quite the opposite. I often refer to sex as being like food. Everyone has a favourite dish, but no one would want to eat it every night. And just like with food, everyone's taste is unique and can change over time. Thinking about sex in this way can help inspire new ideas for keeping things exciting and encourage you to sample different 'cuisines'.

    Here are a few suggestions to help you achieve a balanced diet of naughty and nice...

    Vanilla Sex

    • Pick a theme for each night of the week. What about 'Fetish Friday' and 'Vanilla Sunday'? Or a 'Mid-week mash-up' to keep things interesting?
    • Set each other a challenge for the week ahead. Whoever wins gets to choose what sort of sex you have at the weekend.
    • Have one night a week where you don't use any sex toys at all (except maybe lube) and stick to it. Use this opportunity to explore each other's bodies with nothing but physical contact.
    • Choose a handful of songs which have a tempo you'd like to make love to. Pick one out of a hat and have sex to the rhythm of your chosen song.
    • Turn yourself into a sex toy. Where you'd usually use a feather tickler, blow gently on your lover's skin. Wrist restraints? Hold your partner's hands down instead. A vibrator? Hum a little tune while you lick that sweet spot etc etc. Get imaginative!

    As for finding out what your partner prefers, your best bet is to simply ask them. Unless you're Derren Brown, that's your best way of getting an honest and accurate response. Remember, tastes can change so there's no point assuming. I could tell you how to read your partner's body language and pick up on their sneaky signals, but in reality this isn't always accurate and can often cause more confusion if you're not sure what you're looking for, or read too much into something. Open, honest communication is key to a sexually happy relationship.


    Have you got a question of your own? Comment below and check back next month to see if you've been featured in the next instalment of Fetish FAQ's.

    Got a question that just can't wait? Visit our Buyer's Guides to discover the answers to even more frequently asked questions, or Contact Us and speak to one of our experienced advisors at any time of day or night.

    Beginners Guide to Bondage


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    Comments (7)

    • Couple looking to spice things up: September 30, 2015 15:30
      Great advice we will be introducing mid week mash up, fetish Friday and vanilla Sunday into our relationship !
    • Foxxy: October 01, 2015 14:43
      Great post Jess! :-)
    • HE: October 04, 2015 20:05
      Great blog post Jess! Thank you for answering my Kink vs. Vanilla question! I do think we balance good old naked, normal, non-spanky sex well with the bondage-inspired sex but your post helped me see things a bit more clearly :) Thank you! I wish I had a question for next time too but can't think of one yet, sorry! I'll post again if I get a brainwave though :)
    • Lovehoney Jess: October 05, 2015 08:04
      Hey everyone - thanks for your feedback, I'm really glad you're enjoying these blogs and finding them useful :)
      Stay tuned for the next one! ;)

    • Al: October 06, 2015 19:33
      Some interesting pointers Jess, thanks ... now where di I leave those cuffs ...
    • That twat over there: October 08, 2015 10:14
      Hi Jess,
      I wonder if a feature on pinwheels might be possible.
      They are such wonderous toys with much more to them than pain; an article to help them move out of the shadow might help...!
    • Lovehoney Jess: October 08, 2015 15:25
      Great suggestion TTOT - thanks! If you have any specific topics or questions you'd like covered, by all means pop them here.
      This would probably make a great Buyers' Guide too. Thanks again!
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