5 Easy Steps to Start Exploring Kink with a Partner

handcuffs for kink play

When many of us hear the word “kink,” we often envision iconic scenes from 50 Shades of Gray and its classic depictions of whips, chains, and blindfolds. And yes, while kink can totally include those things, it’s actually much simpler than that. In reality, kink is any sexual act that falls outside what is regarded as “conventional sexual activity.”

Of course, this makes kink entirely subjective to the couple. Maybe you’re an expert at restraints but haven’t experimented yet with roleplay. Or maybe you and your partner stick to missionary and doggy-style so sex outside would be considered kink for you.

There are so many different ways to express kink, but the common factor is that it’s something outside of your sexual comfort zone. And because that might be a bit intimidating, we’ve investigated some tools for how you can make kink (or maybe even more kink) work for your relationship, no matter where you are on the sexual spectrum. Let’s discuss the 4 steps you can take:

1.Have an open conversation.

The first step is always to have a conversation. Your sex life won’t change unless you talk about it! But once you start getting into the habit of talking about sex as casually as you discuss the weather, it’ll become much easier to approach awkward or challenging conversations. 

If your partner doesn’t know about your interest in exploring kink, opt to bring it up at a time when you’re both feeling awake, but not stressed. (And definitely don’t start a sex convo in the middle of a fight, when you’re tired, or if you’ve been drinking too much.) Opt for a neutral environment like the living room or while you’re on a walk. Say: “Hey, I LOVE our sex life, and I’ve been hearing about kink. Would you want to learn more about it with me?”  (You can also check out our Guide to Better Communication for some amazing tips!)

If you and your partner already know you’re both down to try kinking it up, then you can focus more on what you specifically want to explore. This brings us to step number two…

2. Find common ground.

There’s no “one way” or “right way” to explore kink. As we mentioned earlier, kink is anything that falls outside of the more “traditional” sexual norms. Handcuffs? Sex outside? A sex swing? Cuckolding? All of the above? It’s really unlimited! And while there are some great entry-level kinks for beginners, what you and your partner explore will depend on your own unique desires. 

Our Yes, No, Maybe List is a great way to explore different things that you and your partner want to try with another. Simply fill out the list, compare answers, and see where your sexual stars align.

3. Start small and play, play, play. 

Depending on what you discovered through steps 1 and 2, you’ll start to have an idea of where your desires match up…kink is different for everyone! If you’re still not sure where to begin, here are some of our favorite kinks for beginners:

    • Blindfolds. Removing your sense of sight makes your other senses (specifically, touch) stronger…which can be excellent for when things get sexual. Have one partner blindfold the other and provide light kisses down their body. The blindfold will make it so that the person receiving the touch has no idea what’s next and can build a LOT of anticipation. GoodVibes offers a beginner’s bondage kit that’s perfect for this sort of play.
    • Temperature Play. Like using a massage candle or ice cube, temperature play is a sensational way to experiment with kink.  Drip the hot wax onto your partner’s body or draw an ice cube across their nipples and down their chest for an even more intense experience.
    • A Little Bit Of Pain. Don’t let the word “pain” freak you out. A little bit of pain can be a great thing. (Plus your pain tolerance goes down a bit when you’re experiencing sexual pleasure.) Start small with little bites, nibbles, and spanks and, if you both like it, you can expand by adding things like hair-pulling or slaps.

4. Explore Butt Stuff. Butt stuff isn’t always full-blown anal sex—it’s sometimes just dabbling in the backdoor. And because the anus is filled with pleasure-receptors for both men and women, a toy can be a great way to explore booty play. B-Vibe offers a variety of butt plug options, in different sizes and with different types of vibrations. 

5. Implement safe words and aftercare. If your kink includes BDSM, you’ll definitely want to incorporate some safe words. Safewords are a way of letting your partner know when they’ve hit a boundary or trigger and you want them to stop. You might also use the light system: Green means you like what they’re doing, yellow means that you’re enjoying it but a little nervous, and red is a full-blown stop. 

You’ll also want to implement aftercare, which is a term used to describe the process of checking in after a kink session. This typically involves nurturing your partner with cuddling, tender kisses, or back rubs. It’s so important to make sure that you’re both feeling secure, loved, and protected after engaging in a new sexual act. Regardless of the kinks you choose to explore, aftercare is essential!

Alright, you’ve got the tools—now all you need is encouragement. Dive (or tiptoe) into your newfound kink and have fun exploring. Remember: the key is that your kink is simply stepping outside of your comfort zone. By taking a “sexy risk,” you and your partner might discover new parts of your relationship (and yourself!) you never thought possible.