sensation play ideas

Sensation Play for Beginners: The Ultimate Guide

You might not know what sensation play is, but we bet you have participated in activities (or fantasized about them) at least once or twice in your life. 

Some of the more common activities, like spanking your partner’s ass as you pass them in the kitchen or giving your partner a sensual massage, are actually part of sensory play. 

Let’s talk about what exactly sensation play is, why you might want to include it in your sexual repertoire more often, and the best ways to do it – even if you’re a total beginner. 

Your Guide to Sensation Play for Beginners 

What Is Sensation Play?

Sensation play (sometimes referred to as sensory play) is a term that describes an array of activities that engage one or more senses in order to provoke sexual arousal. 

You can indulge in sensory play in various forms:

  • Touch: Stimulation of the skin with various textures and techniques.
  • Smell: Stimulate your scent with candles, essential oils, and other tools.
  • Taste: Engage your taste buds with flavored foods and items.
  • Sound: Stimulate your hearing with audio erotica or music, or find a way to eliminate sound altogether.
  • Sight: Engage your site with visual stimuli or remove it to enhance other senses.

Why Engage in Sensation Play? 

The main goal of sensation play is to enhance your sexual experience with different types of stimuli, which can put you on the path of expanding and enhancing your meaning of sex. 

Sensation play might also help you connect with your body and focus on what’s happening in the present during intimate moments with your partner. 

While sensation play is not inherently kinky, it can be one of the ways you can engage in BDSM. Try a powerplay dynamic, where one partner is in control (providing sensation) and the other is giving up control (who is receiving stimulation).

Sensory play can also include some pain (if you are both interested), which also falls under the BDSM umbrella. And the fear of pain or getting hurt during intense painful sensory play is a part of edge play, which some people find extremely pleasurable. 

How To Explore Sensation Play at Home 

If sensation play sounds like something you’d be interested to explore with your partner, then here are a few different play techniques you want to try:

Try Sensory Deprivation

Sensory deprivation is one of the most beginner-friendly ways to explore sensation play. It involves taking away one or more of your senses. When one of your senses is taken away, the others can become enhanced, which can actually create a very intense sensory experience. 

One way to take away one of the senses is to use a blindfold to take away sight. You can use a satin or silk blindfold for that (which is pretty sexy on its own), or improvize with a t-shirt, scarf, or tie.

intima silk blindfold review

Another way to engage in sensory deprivation is to remove hearing. It can be highly erotic to enjoy partnered sex without hearing your partner’s moans and other sounds, only observing their reactions with your eyes. Try earplugs or noise-cancelling headphones or earphones.

You may even consider using a ball gag to take away your partner’s ability to speak as well as engage in some light-breath play. Breath play, or erotic asphyxiation, is a high-risk sensory deprivation that can offer pretty intense sensations, but can also be dangerous if not performed correctly. As a beginner, we recommend starting with something lighter, like a ball gag.

Turn Up the Heat (or Cool It Down)

Temperature play is another way to explore sensation play at home, and it’s super easy to do. Temperature play involves experimenting with hot and cold temperatures for pleasure. 

Tools like massage oil candles are a perfect place to start for beginners. The melted wax can be used as a massage oil and the temperature of the wax is mild enough to be soothing on the skin. Also, who doesn’t love a good erotic massage

Flickering touch massage candle review

Another way to incorporate temperature play is to use play around with wax play, which involves using low-temperature wax candles. This is a more advanced technique and involves placing dripping hot wax on the body. 

And when you want to cool off, use ice cubes! Drag them across your partner’s skin, or pop them in your mouth and explore your partner’s body with your mouth. 

You can also cool off some of your sex toys for a fun change-up. Toys made of glass and steel like dildos and butt plugs are perfect for ice play. Pop them in the fridge for a few hours, or into a freezer for a few minutes (test them on your hands first to avoid any chance of ice burn) and then use them in the solo or with a partner. 

Engage Your Taste Buds

When it comes to sensory play, we can’t forget food! Engaging your taste buds with various food items during sexual play can be a very fun experience.

Think whipped cream, figs, strawberries, chocolate (think aphrodisiacs), or popping candy. Enjoy these foods together with your partner while you have sex, let your partner eat it off your body, or eat it off theirs. 

One thing to keep in mind with food play is to avoid using it on the vulva and in the vagina. The sugars can very easily disrupt the microflora and unbalance a healthy vaginal pH, but there are plenty of other erotic body parts to use food on. 

Painful Pleasure 

If you enjoy a little bit of pain with your pleasure, then another way to explore sensation play is through pleasurable pain, which can be created in many forms.

A great start for beginners is to try a pinwheel. These tiny tools look intimidating, but they are totally safe to use. The spikes are usually sharp enough to give you a tingly sensation, but not sharp enough to damage the skin (unless you press really, really hard!). For some, it may just feel soothing and relaxing. 

what does bdsm mean

Another way to explore painful pleasure is with impact play, like spanking, whipping or flogging. You can start with bare-handed spanking, then level up using a leather glove, and then incorporate impact accessories to your spanking repertoire. Lightweight floggers are popular for whipping and tickling your partner and they don’t hurt as much as a rigid paddle might. 

Another tool you might consider is nipple clamps. If you enjoy nipple stimulation, nipple clamps can add a lot of painful, yet pleasurable, sensations. 

Are You Ticklish? 

For those who are fans of a more gentle sensation play, a great way to explore different sensations is with a soft tickler. You can start the exploration using your fingers alone and lightly dragging your fingertips over your partner’s naked skin. You can also create a similar sensation using a feather tickler.

Since your curiosity has led you to this article, hopefully you’ve found a few new ideas to try. Sensation play can take on many forms and lead to an ever-evolving sex journey.