Often the word “kink” brings to mind plenty of tools used to create intense sensations: ropes, paddles, floggers, nipple clamps — the list goes on. But kinky moments hardly require an entire dungeon full of materials.

In fact, the internal experience can categorize many fetishes and kinks rather than objects utilized. As the most powerful sex organ, the brain contains fantasies, desires and psychological elements of sexuality.

Though sex may feel entirely external, most of that pleasure manifests inside of the psyche.

Exhibitionism

The desire or act of displaying genitals in a public or semi-public space qualifies an individual as an exhibitionist. Unfortunately, this particular erotic interest has the potential to negatively impact others.

Any eyewitnesses present at an exhibitionistic moment must be consenting adults, rather than innocent bystanders being subjected to unwarranted genitals.

Exhibitionism, however, can happen without offending others or demonstrating problematic behavior. Luckily, creating the illusion of a public space titillates an exhibitionist without subjecting others to their actions. Locate a window many floors above street level or facing a brick wall — this option allows one to feel the vulnerable thrill that comes with being seen, but without disturbing others. Consider getting it on in front of a camera to expand on that “being-watched” feeling.

Exhibitionist acts range from mooning and streaking to flashing. “Anasyrma” describes lifting a skirt to reveal one’s self not wearing underwear, while “reflectoporn” consists of photographs with nude figures reflected in mirrored surfaces, such as TVs and toasters.

While hardly innately pathological, exhibitionism may resemble a disorder if it results in harm to the self or others. Treat this particular subset of desire with care to ensure that exhibitionism remains contained and does not disturb others. Exhibitionism can easily become criminal, and remember consent of all parties is necessary for any sexual activity.

Voyeurism

Voyeurism is the flip side of exhibitionism — voyeurs experience arousal when spying on people engaged in intimate behaviors such as sex, masturbation or undressing. Beyond observing, some voyeurs may create videos or photographs of the event.

Just as with exhibitionism, voyeurism presents the dangerous possibility of non-consenting participants. Those interested in voyeurism should create role-play scenes to experience the kink without disturbing others. Simply arrange a time and place for partners to undress or pleasure themselves, then spy away without any harm done.

Creating photographs and videos to share later might also satisfy voyeuristic urges. Never, ever watch or photograph individuals without their awareness or consent — to get off on this material without conscious, informed participation would be wrong.

The trick to these potentially problematic interests is to create the illusion of an exhibitionistic or voyeuristic situation without truly violating anyone’s privacy.

Erotic humiliation

Consensual sexual humiliation defines a surprising number of kinks and fetishes.

A submissive partner who gleans sexual arousal from humiliation may get off from pretending to be a dog loyal to its master (the dominant partner). Other forms of verbal erotic humiliation include degrading name-calling, disparaging comments on physical appearance, requiring the sub to ask permission for everyday activities and forced flattery.

Physical erotic humiliation encompasses ejaculating on the face, servitude, deprivation of privacy, discipline, being forced to dress a certain way, objectification and a submissive partner asking permission to orgasm.

The key to enjoying erotic humiliation without sidestepping into abuse is consent. The submissive should desire these activities completely and discuss specific boundaries and safe words beforehand to prevent any possible discomfort or triggers. After all, erotic humiliation mimics actual embarrassment very closely and this experience can be intense. Submissive partners may be completely comfortable with certain insults, but react badly with others.

Those that engage in 24/7 master-slave relationships live in constant power dynamics by telling submissive partners what to do. Just as with gender and sexuality, kinks operate on a spectrum and can be up for all sorts of interpretation.

Sexual denial

Also known as orgasm denial, erotic sexual denial consists of maintaining a heightened state of sexual arousal without orgasm. Orgasm control is commonly practiced in BDSM and sexual bondage communities and often includes a chastity device to prevent any genital stimulation whatsoever.

Dominant partners may tie down or handcuff submissive partners to prevent further movement. The titillating experience of being teased and finally allowing the experience to culminate in orgasm can be intoxicating for many kinksters.

Generally, three types of sexual denial exist. Tease and denial describes stimulation until one reaches the brink of orgasm — then stimulation ends completely. Often this feels uncomfortable (blue balls, anyone?), but creates feelings of intense arousal. If orgasm occurs after this period, kinksters sometimes refer to it as a “ruined orgasm,” since they are often less intense than normal orgasms.

Tie and tease consists of restraining the submissive partner, escalating the sensation of helplessness induced by bondage and orgasm control. Total denial avoids genital stimulation altogether; this is where the chastity belt or device comes in. Sexual denial can be a tool to control others, since it often produces psychological dependency.

Practice with care to avoid a potentially abusive experience, and always negotiate the event carefully beforehand.

Body worship

Listening to a partner gush over body parts — hips, lips, nips and everything in between — enhances confidence and bonding between partners. Body worship may occur in order to praise one’s physical form, or it may take more aggressive forms such as face-sitting or spanking.

Body worship may take the tone of BDSM if the dominant partner reinforces the sub’s inferiority. The submissive partner may lick or stroke the worshipped body part while the dominant partner remains aloof.

Vagina and penis worship are both common, often including the submissive partner in a kneeling position in front of the genitals while engaged in oral contact. Foot worship exists as a subset of foot fetishes, one of the more common fetishes in existence.

Body worship may extend into non-physical aspects of a relationship. Be sure to stay within the boundaries of body worship discussed beforehand.