How To Bring Kinks Into The Bedroom, According To 9 People Who’ve Done It

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When it comes to sex, what arouses people and gets them off really runs the gamut. What works for one person isn't necessarily going to work for another. And one person's idea of kinky can be another person's idea of vanilla. But how you bring kinks into the bedroom is a very individual conversation, or series of conversations to have.

“Kinks ... are created through a complex interplay that research doesn't fully understand of genetics, environment, and our experiences paired with sexually relevant contexts,” Rena McDaniel, a clinical sexologist, tells Bustle. "Sometimes kinks come from our brains pairing an otherwise non-sexual, neutral object, body part, or situation with a sexually relevant context. These pairings can happen at any point in our life." For example, McDaniel explains, if you have a fantastic masturbation session on a blue couch, you could develop a kink for blue couches.

"Kink refers to something that turns you on, sexually, that also exists outside of our cultural norm of ‘traditional’ cis-heteronormative ‘vanilla’ sex,” Jamie J. LeClaire, sexuality educator, tells Bustle. “It can look like anything from activities under the BDSM umbrella, to fetishes, to roleplaying. Because, culturally, we have such a limited scope of what sex looks like missionary, kink really encompasses a wide range of activities, fantasies, and desires.”

Although a 2017 survey of 2,000 people by EdenFantasys found that almost half of Americans consider themselves kinky, bringing up that kink and introducing it to a partner — new or current — isn't always easy. Bustle spoke to women and non-binary folks about how they introduce their kinks into the bedroom. Here's what they had to say.