Kink vs. Fetish: What’s the Difference?

July 30, 2020 7:21 pm Published by Leave your thoughts

When you’re new to the world of BDSM, the difference between kinks and fetishes may not be immediately clear. Most people know that both refer to taboo or out-of-the-norm sexual practices, but what do they really mean, and how are they different from each other?

While it’s true that both terms refer to sex acts or desires that are out of the ordinary, they refer to very different concepts. In short, “kink” is an umbrella term that encompasses all alternative sexual practices, while “fetish” is a specific need in order to become aroused or experience orgasm. Kinks and fetishes are both quite varied, depending on the individual.

What is a kink?

Kinks are alternative sexual practices or desires, which are subjective—anal sex might be considered kinky to some, while it’s downright vanilla for others. Impact play, sensory deprivation, restraints and other BDSM practices are generally considered kinky.

Kinks and fetishes overlap, because what is sexually intriguing to some is necessary to others. However, kinks are more about trying new things and deciding what you like, rather than an absolute requirement for arousal. Sex partners might try a number of different alternative sex practices to get a feel for what they like the most, and have a rotating array of scenes in which they like to indulge.

Generally, kinky sex is becoming more mainstream on the whole, especially given the access to internet pornography, alternative sex communities and the willingness of more people to talk about what turns them on.

What is a fetish?

Have you ever heard of a foot fetish? That’s a great example of something that could be a kink for some (feet aren’t traditionally considered a part of sex for most people), but if you have a hard time getting aroused or finishing without imagining, seeing, touching or otherwise interacting with feet, then that qualifies as a fetish.

Fetishes are often psychological, and can include inanimate objects, body parts and even specific sex acts. To be a fetish, it must be absolutely required for personal sexual arousal. If, to paraphrase Sir Mix-a-Lot, you like big butts—and absolutely cannot get in the mood without seeing one—that is a fetish. If it’s something that’s “nice to have,” it’s a kink.

Some fetishes can be problematic in certain circumstances, like voyeurism or exhibitionism, where you may unwillingly subject other people to your fetish. Please ensure that all people involved in your fetish or fantasy have given their knowing and informed consent.

Lists of kinks and fetishes

Some of the most common kinks and fetishes include BDSM, impact play, sensory deprivation, humiliation, group sex, nylons, feet, piercings and even armpits—so if any of these have popped up on your kinky sex radar, you’re not the only one. As always, use a safe word and negotiate boundaries before exploring these fantasies with your partner.

When you’re ready to get away from it all and try BDSM or other items on your list of fetishes and kinks in a safe, private environment, book a visit to Monterey Stay and Play!

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