Kinky Crash Course: Wax Play

Hello and welcome to my new post series: Kinky crash course! I have been in the kink scene for a little while now, and I get a lot of ‘how to get started’ questions. I remember when I first got involved in the social scene and realized that there was SO much information to learn. Kink has a pretty big vocabulary, and a steep learning curve. I spent a lot of time on Fetlife forums reading all I possibly could about different roles, types of play and the ethics of kink. I wanted to share this information somewhere a little more digestible and easy to find than just various forums on Fetlife (not knocking the groups on FL, they are also great resources).

Wax Play: The Why

Photo: Ashley Love Model http://ashleylove-modeling.tumblr.com/post/105063678384/deepdigitalphotography-model-ashleylove-modeling
Photo: Ashley Love Model 

Why would you want to do wax play? If you have spent any time cruising Fetlife or other kink websites, you may have seen beautiful photos of a girl with a candle perched on her bum, the wax dripping down her skin. Or a rope photo where there are tapered candles tucked into the wraps. What is wax play like, why would you want to do it?

Wax play is sensation play. The feeling of wax dripping on your skin is very unique and fun. It can be painful, relaxing and sensual. For someone who is curious about sensation play, I think that wax play is safe and easy to learn. As a tool, wax is very versatile. I discovered my kink for wax when I was pretty young, I found that I really enjoyed the sensation of dripping the wax on me after I blew out a candle, and I just loved candles in general.

The How

I couldn’t possibly write about all of the different ways to do wax play in just one post, but I can break down the basics. I have seen wax play done in two ways:

  1. With a wax melter: Some people like to use a wax melter/crockpot to melt large amounts of wax. The wax can then be scooped and poured onto the willing subject. The plus sides to do this is that you have more wax readily available at one time, and can be very precise about the temperature of the wax. People who enjoy creating artwork out of wax will often use a crock pot for their wax. Obviously this method requires more equipment and more wax.
  2. With Candles: Candles are my preferred method. Candles are just sexy, and they have a certain allure to them that I haven’t been able to replicate with a crock pot full of lukewarm wax. You can use several different shapes of candles, including pillars and taper candles. With candles, you wait until the wax is pooling in the candle and then you drip and pour the wax.

Kinds of Wax

Only two kinds of wax are safe for wax play. DO NOT I repeat DO NOT use any kind of wax other than these. There might be some debate on this topic, but from my experience these two are the most widely used and the safest. If you look at a candle at the store and it doesn’t say what kind of wax it is, DON’T use it. Different kinds of wax melt at different temperatures, and some of them are much too hot to pour on human skin. You risk burning your partner if you use the wrong kind. I also tend to avoid scented wax, just because the more additives in the wax, the more variables for temperature variation. Color also plays a role in temperature.

  • Soy: Soy melts at an extremely low temperature, meaning that the melted wax will be cooler. A 100% soy candle can sometimes have such a low melt point that after you drip the wax on someone, it will not fully harden.
  • Paraffin: Paraffin is a petroleum product, and melts at a slightly higher temperature than soy. I prefer 100% paraffin candles because they hurt more, and I am an evil sadist.
  • Mixed Content: Soy/paraffin candles can be great because you can end up with a ‘middle’ temperature candle. Once again just check the contents and don’t buy it if it doesn’t list the ingredients.

Avoid: Don’t use beeswax candles. The wax melts at too high of a point and will burn your partner.

Candle Shapes

When it comes to physical candles, there are some preferred shapes of candles for wax play.

  • Pillar: Pillar candles are cylinder shaped, with no glass encasing them (this is important). Cylinder shaped candles are great because they are wide enough that a large amount of wax can pool at the top, and they are also good for holding.
  • Taper: Taper candles are the kind of candles you stick in a candle holder. They are tapered at the wick end, and usually sit on dining room tables. You will see tapered candles in rope bondage sometimes. Tapered candles means that the wax doesn’t have any time to cool or pool on the candle, so every drop will be much hotter, and you will have a constant drip of wax.

Avoid: Candles with glass containers. I have heard some people recommend the religious candles you can buy at the grocery store, which is not a good idea. If a candle has glass around it, when you tip the candle the flame touches the side of the glass. The glass will heat up and can burn you, or even worse, shatter. Nothing will ruin a scene more than pick glass out of your hands and your bottom’s back.

Update: I’ve had a few people ask if they can use a candle that has been removed from a glass container. If the candle is paraffin or soy, and you want to spend your time figuring out how to remove a candle from it’s glass home that is fine.

Setup

To set up a basic wax scene, here are some other items you should have on hand aside from your sexy selves and the candles.

  • A lighter (duh). I prefer the taper kind opposed to a cigarette lighter or a match, they just are a lot easier to use.
  • A wet towel or a fire extinguisher. If you are playing at a bdsm club (if your club allows wax play) they usually require you to notify the DM (dungeon monitor) when your scene has to do with fire, and they will provide you with an extinguisher.
  • A drop cloth, plastic bag, or ‘puppy pads’. Wax play is messy. Even if you are careful where you drip it, when you scrape it off it will get everywhere. This is why some clubs don’t allow wax play. I use puppy pads (absorbent cotton pads with a plastic under lining) because I can just bundle them up and throw them away when I’m done.
  • A hair tie if your bottom has long hair. The last thing you want to do is get wax in their hair or light their hair on fire.
  • Optional: Some people like to put massage oil on before a wax scene. The oil will make the heat radiate more, but it will also make the wax come off easier. I like the discomfort of removing wax, so I usually forgo this item.

Some body parts are better than others for wax. Wax is safe on a large majority of the body. Obviously some body parts will be more sensitive than others. You should negotiate where wax will go on the body before the scene. Some people can tolerate having wax on their nipples and some absolutely cannot. If you are playing with someone new to wax play, talk about their body and negotiate if it is ok to try those places or not. You will see pictures of wax on buttholes and genitals online, I general stay away from those parts because it is a level of risk I’m not comfortable with. Backs, chests, and legs are the best places to start off with.

As a top, I usually drip wax on my arm first to test the temperature. I start of dripping wax farther away from the bottom’s skin, as that gives it more time to cool before hitting their skin. I will move closer after watching their reactions. Some other ways to play with sensation are to add a blindfold, or light restraint to the experience.

Wax Removal

Removing the wax is one of the best parts. The options are limitless, but my favorite is using my fingernails to scrape and peel the wax off. You can be gentle or rough doing this, which obviously will change the intensity of the scene. I also use a knife to take of the wax, but knife play is another subject entirely. After I’m done with the scene, I usually try to wipe off most of the little particles leftover with a wet washcloth, and make sure that I provide excellent aftercare for my bottom.

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