It could be argued that everything we do has to do with sensation. If a whip is being thrown, certainly someone is feeling its bite. However, sensation play, as a scene in itself is a special kind of play. Let’s explore that.
Sensation play is about, first and foremost, touch. In this scene, the other person (people) will use their hands and various instruments to elicit a response from the bottom. Very few scenes of sensation play involves pain or bruise, but instead focusing on the act of feeling the various items.
Did I say various items? Indeed I did. Here are some things to put in your toy bag for a sensation scene and what to do with them.
Blindfold – Most sensation scenes are done with a blindfold on the bottom (the person receiving the sensation). But you can do it with the bottom just closing their eyes or, if they are really anxious and can’t do scene without looking, then open eyes is fine. I’ve always used a blindfold, it adds a sense of anticipation to the bottom. The question of “What will I feel next?” can create some beautiful scene tension
Gauntlet/ Claw – One of the most used items in sensation play is claws. It
Wartenberg Wheel – I covered this on another post.; have a look.
Ice – Ice is fun, but can be messy. An easy to bring it to the play space is to take half a bottle of water and freeze, then use it in your scene. Do I like ice on nipples? Yes, I do. You might too.
Vampire Glove – If you haven’t seen these they are kind of awesome. They are gloves with tack like material on the fingers. Scratch them on skin for a little more of a biting feel.
Electrical Play – use a TENS unit or a mild taser to stimulate the bottom. Combined with something soft, like feathers, can really mess with the mind.
There are lots of other things that can be used; balms, wax, impact toys, fabrics (silk or terry cloth) – to just name a few. The goal is awaken the stimuli while depriving the bottom of other senses. It is a type of fear play, but is done at a light level and can be done with those just starting out in BDSM. I often recommend this type of scene when a top and bottom are playing together for the first time. It builds trust and shows which kind of player each is.
How to set the scene – Negotiate before the scene your limits and safewords, then move on to which instruments will be used, usually no more than five. If you are using any chemicals, make sure to ask about allergic reactions before putting it on the skin or genitals. Have your bottom in a position where s/he can stay for an extended period of time, like a massage table. After you have blindfolded them and/ or put on headphones, lay out the instruments and use them each in turn. Pay attention to the bottom’s reaction to each sensation, think about how to combine sensations or how to ‘trick’ the bottom into anticipating one sensation and substituting it for another. You must be attuned and focused on your bottom in this scene, This is another reason I recommend it for a starter scene, it builds trust and focus on each other, helping each learn to read another.
Because it is a light scene, this is one that could go on for some time, but keep in mind that sensations can get fatigued just like anything else. If your bottom stops reacting a certain way, or seems to been wandering off in their mind, it’s time to bring the scene to an end. Put the instruments away, and put your hands on your sub, rub their arms or back, squeeze their hands – some acknowledgement for them to come gently out of the scene. From there you can remove the items you used for sensory deprivation (if any) and close the scene. Make sure to stay with your bottom until they are alert and aware, and have a good sense if they are having any skin reactions to the items you uses.
And voila! You have completed a sensation scene.
Until next time, keep talking the taboos!