It has been more than a decade since the erotic novel “Fifty Shades of Grey” awoke the inner Anastasia Steele in women around the world. The shadowy world of kink – spanking, bondage, choking, dominance, etc. – saw the light of day in popular culture. In fact, a study in the “Journal of Sexual Medicine” says nearly 50% of the general population has tried some form of BDSM. In fact, we love this topic so much, we have a blog about the basics. But if you want to learn how to introduce kink into the bedroom, we have you covered.

We talked with the Director of Indiana University’s Center for Sexual Health Promotion Dr. Debby Herbenick about whether kink play is actually becoming more popular. Her answer: “Absolutely, yes!”

Why? It’s not just because of a book.

“We have been doing quite a bit of research over the past four or five years now and some of this is connected with far greater access to sexually explicit materials through smartphones,” Dr. Herbenick says.

If you’re new to kink, Dr. Herbenick has some helpful advice.

Advice for Beginners

Communication is key

Consent is always a must with sex. When exploring new boundaries, it’s important to make sure you and your partner(s) are on the same page.

Dr. Herbenick says, “I think that what’s really important as kink behaviors become more common is that people really step up their communication. Kink exploration can go really well but we also see many instances of problems where people don’t talk in advance in really clear ways about what they like.”

When breaching a conversation about introducing kink in the bedroom, it’s ok to feel vulnerable. Be specific about what you would like. Give examples, because they may just hear you say the word “kink” and imagine a dungeon with ball gags and chains (which is great, if that’s both your styles). Be prepared to answer questions and have a longer conversation about expectations. Also, talk about how far you would like to go.

“For example, if somebody does want to be spanked, it’s important to not just talk about spanking and saying, ‘I like this’ or ‘I want to try it,’ but also to share information about intensity. It’s wise to start out really light with whatever kink or impact play that they’re interested in to start out light or gentle,” Dr. Herbenick adds.

Use a safe word and gesture

You may already know to have a safe word with your partner. This allows your partner to give more consent or remove consent at any point in play. They’re a great way to set up a safe environment so everyone can have fun.

After you nail down your safe word, consider adding a safe gesture just in case your mouth is otherwise engaged.

“Make sure people have safe words or, also, safe gestures for anything where they might not be able to speak or use their safe word,” Dr. Herbenick says. “Real clear communication can make sexual exploration, including kink exploration, that much better.”

Make use of products

If you’re into bondage and roleplay, then you will need a few things to get started. This can include anything from handcuffs to a whip to a sex swing. Think of what you want, and you can find the product to enhance the experience.

According to Dr. Herbenick, kink is all about power and products can help if you’re wanting to explore dominance or submissiveness. She gives great examples, like “comfortable handcuffs that can easily come off. You can go with things that can be used for spanking. But you know feathers are really great too. Any type of vibrator or sex toy can be used.”

Get kinky anywhere

Don’t let the bedroom limit you. With today’s technology, you can get kinky anywhere. In fact, remote controlled vibrators are a great way to increase the suspense and powerplay with your partner. Have your partner wear the vibrator, control it from another room, and see the fireworks fly.

“There’s lots of great erotica around that people use a range of toys. You can do this with many different products you have on hand or still need to add to your toolkit,” Dr. Herbenick says.

Popular Types of Kink

There are many types of kink and just because we mention five below, that doesn’t mean these are the only ones you should try. Explore and have fun with the kink that satisfies your sexual instinct!


BDSM (or bondage/discipline, dominance/submission, and sadism/masochism) saw a huge rise in popularity after “Fifty Shades of Grey.” The best part, you can take this from mild to wild since it covers a lot of ground. The most common ways people participate in BDSM are by tying up a partner, taking on dominant/submissive roles, or impact play (spanking/hitting).

Anal Play

You may be thinking, “anal play probably isn’t that common.” Well, it definitely is. A recent study found 36% of women and 44% of men between ages 25-44 have had anal sex. It also doesn’t necessarily mean intercourse. You can use toys and other objects. Just make sure you use a silicone-based lubricant to reduce friction.


Who doesn’t like escaping reality and pretending to be someone else? Roleplaying is a great way to for couples to play character outside of their day-to-day lives. This can be anything from switching roles or acting out your favorite characters.


This practice is pretty simple. The name says it all! You bring yourself back from the edge of climaxing, delaying that orgasm. Some say that when you finally do orgasm, it makes it more intense.

Group Sex

This is apparently the most common fantasy for Americans. Dr. Justin Lehmiller from the Kinsey Institute asked more than 4,000 Americans about their biggest sexual fantasy and more than one-third answered their number one dream is multi-partner sex. 89% of respondents have thought about group sex.

Why? Lehmiller says, “It’s human nature to grow bored with sexual routines—and it’s easy to fall into a routine when you have just one partner for a very long period of time. Group sex provides an opportunity to spice things up.”

Use this blog to talk to your partner about adding kink to the bedroom and add a little spice to your vanilla sex life.