Toy Reviews

10 Essential BDSM Toys for Beginners

Everyone has to start somewhere, this is a BDSM toy guide for anyone starting a collection. I wanted to share my favorite BDSM toys and gear I think is essential for any kit in an easy format. Whether you are a domestic dominatrix in training, a couple looking to spice things up or a loyal sub with dreams of having the perfect toy kit, this list is for you.

  1. Strap on harness

Every dominatrix needs a good harness that fits well, is comfortable and gets the job done right. For the beginning dominatrix you might think “I will get a kit” but that is a mistake. Strap on kits usually come with a nylon strap harness and dildos that are so-so (usually too big or too small.) It may take a while to figure out what you like best but my favorite is The Jag by Aslan Leathers I like thong harnesses that can be converted and the leather is treated so it’s easy to clean and doesn’t break down over time.

  1. Dildos

It will take a while for anyone who is a beginner dominatrix to figure out what kind of dildos they like but I recommend materials that are body safe over jelly toys or PVC. I think it’s important to make sure it’s easy to clean/cover as well. Tantus has a great selection of toys to choose from that come in a variety of colors and sizes.

  1. Restraints

 Restraints are very personal in their appeal. Maybe you’re a leather fan, or perhaps you enjoy the art of rope bondage. For those who are first exploring bondage, I have enjoyed Hemp Rope by Twisted Monk. It’s more expensive than what you will find at a hardware store but also more versatile. For example, you can use rope to tie a set of handcuffs or a create a cuff that you can attach anywhere. I began with rope and still find its meditative process to be grounding and a great way of building energy and anticipation within the scene.

  1. Impact Toys

Everyone loves the mental image of the dominatrix with the whip, right? It’s classic and unforgettable. However, learning to use a whip takes a lot of practice. I suggest starting with something like a riding crop, paddle or flogger first. I love Cane-iac for their creativity with unusual materials and their superb execution of the classics (like a cane, for example.)

  1. Sensory play Toys

Oooh, sensory play. There are so many different ways you can take this- Pokey toys, soft floggers, electro play… It all depends on the vibe of the scene. Sensory play increases suspense when you use it to build a scene or it can push the experience over the top. You can’t go wrong with a wartenberg wheel, honestly. I like playing the game of keeping myself to oe random toy and seeing how much I can do with it.

  1. Hoods/Blindfolds

Hoods and such aren’t for everyone, some people feel very claustrophobic in them but I think they are a great tool to have in your tool kit. You can surprise someone with sensations or take complete control of them. Personally, I like hoods with the mouth exposed like the Cocksucker Hood by Mr S but in a pinch an eye mask for sleeping is great.

  1. Nipple play 

Surprisingly, many don’t know about the benefits of exploring nipple play- They are an unfortunately overlooked erogenous zone. I like to warm up with plastic clothes pins which are easily cleanable. If you want to leave the realm of sensory exploration, you can make them squirm with a strong set of clover clamps.

  1. Gags  

Are they too noisy? Plug their mouth with a gag to really make them feel helpless! I like ball gags personally but a good dental gag or even a ring gag has a place in my dungeon. I love versatility in all my toys so I find that the options provided by Bondage Webbing to be a perfect fit.

  1. Paddles

How will they know that you mean business unless you can really give them a good, hard spanking? I prefer paddles from Cane-iac. They have a variety of paddles in many different kinds of wood (yes that makes a difference. Let’s say it “hits different.”) More importantly, I’m yet to break one of their products. Save for canes, of course.

  1. A collar 

Lead them around and help them find sub space by locking a collar on. Many subs have told me how a collar has a been emotional impact on them, why not use that power to control them and pull them exactly into the headspace that you want? A formal leather slave collar is wonderful but so is a dog collar. What is your preference? I think quality is very important, so one of my favorite stores is Leather By Danny. You may recognize many of the designs there, now you have found the original source of the creativity.

Image by Tantus

The Hidden Benefits of Good Toys

You might think I’m thick for stating this but I’ll do it anyways; Quality really is worth it.
Unfortunately, quality is not cut and dry; Some expensive things suck and some cheap things are awesome.

For example, I’ll compare two kinds of handcuffs: $10 Thumb Cuffs and $45 Deluxe Steel Handcuffs.

The “Deluxe” cuffs I bought in my youth when I was tormenting a boyfriend, unfortunately… They were crap. I spent a little chunk of change on them and  I only used them once or twice because they didn’t feel good, they weren’t fun to use and they weren’t really that versatile.
The thumb cuffs on the other hand… I use whenever I have a chance; They just rock. They’re simple but sturdy, versatile and I connect with them. That’s really my point with this whole post- Good toys are toys you connect with. If it feels like you have to fight the toy to use it, it’s not a good toy for you.

The bold statement above became really apparent to me over the weekend when I was comparing my single tail to my partner’s- Mine is made from inexpensive leather, has thick strands, is probably only 8 plait and packs a whollup to my arm when I use it on someone. I knew I had to fight that whip to use it and that was part of the fun with it; If I wanted to beat someone, I had to really put some effort into it. Sadly though, I don’t actually like this whip very much. It doesn’t like to be accurate, it doesn’t bend much and it feels like it almost gets stuck in particular configurations. All of this wasn’t really that apparent to me until I used my partner’s 20 plait signal whip…

Oh. My. God. This Whip is AMAZING. 

I don’t often feel like I should just shell out half a grand for a new toy, especially not one I already have an inferior version of. Sure, it would be nicer, easier to use, probably meaner and I’m sure it will make me dinner too but meh. Don’t spend money if you don’t need to, right? 
Fuck me, though. This whip is incredible.
The craftsmanship alone makes it like a piece of goddamn art; It has tiny leather strips that wind back and forth, crisscrossing and locking together to make a solid column of dead animal parts designed solely for the purpose of inflicting pain. Every inch of it curls and unfurls gently as I run it through my fingers… It feels soft but solid to the touch and unlike anything I’ve touched before. It’s just some how… Different and that intrigues me. It’s innocent yet so devious- Some qualities I share with it. 
Lifting it to strike feels like an effortlessly fluid motion and the follow through of throwing it out in a clean strike continues that trend.  It feels like the leather is now a part of me; Each strike lands exactly where I want it to and with exactly the correct amount of force. This toy and I are dancing together across the ass of my bottom and it’s beautiful, we’re creating a piece of art together and there’s nothing that prevents it from obeying me exactly. Goddamn. This is how this relationship is supposed to be, isn’t it?