What is a BDSM Starter Kit and How Can It Help You Explore Kink?

“I’d love to start exploring BDSM, but all the gear is so expensive!” is a complaint I hear from new and curious kinksters all the time. “I don’t even know what I like yet, how can I get started without dropping hundreds of pounds on things I might not enjoy?”

And I hear you, budget-conscious newbie. Perhaps you’ve perused your local fetish market and picked up artisan floggers, hand-dyed natural fiber ropes, or vintage violet wands, then shuddered at the price tags.

I absolutely love beautiful, unique, one-of-a-kind kink items and I believe we should all be supporting our favourite indie creators within the community. Once you know you enjoy impact play, for example, that buttery soft leather flogger with a hand-turned handle might be a worthwhile investment that will serve you well for many years. But when you’re just starting out, that can be a prohibitive amount of money to drop on a “well, that might be fun…”

Budget constraints and curiosity sometimes lead new kinksters to improvise. Some pervertables are fine, of course, but in other cases using household items for kink can be dangerous.

This is where a BDSM starter kit can help you.

What is a BDSM Starter Kit or Bondage Kit for Beginners?

A BDSM starter kit might also be called a “bondage kit.” In short, it’s a collection of kink items bundled together in a package designed to help you explore.

Some of the items you might find in a beginners’ BDSM or bondage kit include:

  • Impact toys such as floggers, crops, or paddles
  • Restraints such as handcuffs, wrist ties, or bondage tape
  • Rope
  • Gags
  • Blindfolds
  • Collars and/or leashes
  • Clamps and clips (e.g. for nipples)
  • Sensation play items such as strokers or ticklers
  • Sex toys such as vibrators, cock rings, dildos, or strap-ons
  • Wax play candles
  • …and more!

Every BDSM starter kit is slightly different. You’ll need to choose the best one for you depending on your needs, budget, and interests.

How Can a Beginners’ Bondage Kit Help You to Explore?

What is it that interests you about bondage, kink, or BDSM?

If I asked this question to ten different newcomers to the world of kink, I would probably get ten very different answers. That’s because BDSM is a vast and varied world, encompassing all kinds of activities from impact play to power exchange, shibari to sensation play, and so much more.

This vastness is exciting, but can also be overwhelming and confusing. Investing in a BDSM starter kit can be a great place to start for several reasons.

Variety Without the Price-Tag

A kit allows you to try several different things at an affordable price. Perhaps you think you might be into pain, but you also fancy the idea of getting tied up… ooh, and that “wax play” thing sounds exciting, too! A good BDSM starter kit gives you an entry point for several different kinks.

This way, when you find something you like, you can explore it further. And if you find something isn’t for you, then you’ve learned something valuable about your desires without having spent a lot of money on a toy that will languish in the back of the bedroom closet.

Easy and Convenient

A beginners’ bondage kit or BDSM kit takes the guesswork out of kinky shopping. When you’re new, you don’t always know what you don’t know, and trying to buy toys can be confusing at best. A kit gives you an easy, one-stop place to get started.

Staying Safe

As I touched on above, improvising your kinky toys can be dangerous. Spanking your partner with a wooden spoon is likely fine, but did you know that tying someone up with a silk scarf is actually much less safe than using proper bondage rope?

Bondage kits sold by reputable retailers include products specially designed for kinky play that will help you to stay safe as long as you observe basic precautions and practice RACK (that’s Risk Aware Consensual Kink, FYI.)

Get Inspired

It’s a cliché, but a truism, that the brain is the body’s biggest and most important sexual organ. The real magic of BDSM isn’t just the feel of a flogger across your back or cuffs tightening around your wrists, but what’s happening in your mind – and in your dynamic with your partner(s) – as those things happen.

Your BDSM kit might contain items you’ve never thought to use before, and this can spark all kinds of ideas, fantasies, and inspiration.

Choose the Best Bondage Kit for You

Ready to dive in? Here are a few things you’ll want to take into consideration in choosing the best bondage kit for you.

Budget

A BDSM starter kit can cost you under £20 for the most basic kit, up to £150 or more for a comprehensive kit with all the bells and whistles.

Interests

Think about the aspects of kink that interest you the most, and prioritise. If your primary interest is in restraint, you’ll want a kit that includes ropes and/or cuffs. If you’re more interested in pain, choose a kit that comes with paddles, floggers, or crops.

Aesthetic

Yes, it matters! BDSM is a very personal thing, and different aesthetics resonate with different people. If you’re after a darker, more atmospheric mood, an all-black set might suit you. If, on the other hand, you prefer a more colourful and playful feel, you might like reds, pinks or purples. Then there are completely offbeat options, like this denim set!

This post was kindly sponsored by Whipple Tickle. You can shop bondage kits as well as sex toys, lingerie, kink gear, and more at their site. All views and writing are, as always, mine.

[Kink Product Review] Roomfun Silicone Bondage Restraints Set

[Update 31/10/23: this product has been discontinued. I have removed dead links accordingly.]

When you think of BDSM restraints, what material do you think of? Probably rope, leather, or possibly faux leathers, right? Though I’ve used countless silicone sex toys and even a (very ouchy) silicone paddle, I’d never really considered silicone as a material for restraints before. But why not? It’s a strong, versatile, and body-friendly material – in other words, many of the properties that are ideal for kink gear.

The good folks at Tracy’s Dog (remember their OG Pro2 I reviewed last year?) just sent me this Roomfun Silicone Bondage Restraints set to try out.

Roomfun Silicone Bondage Restraints

The Roomfun Silicone Bondage Restraints set arrived packaged in a simple cardboard box with the company name and logo on it, and with a decorative outer cardboard sleeve with information about the product.

Tracy's Dog silicone bondage restraints set

This is admittedly a bit nitpicky, but the copy on the box desperately needed proofreading. There are three glaring typos and the overall syntax is really off – it looks like someone ran it through Google Translate and then didn’t bother to get it checked. While this doesn’t impact the actual quality, for a product that costs $129.99 I don’t think “readable product copy” is too much to ask.

Roomfun silicone bondage restraints set

Inside the box, a plastic divider tray holds the items. The set consists of:

  • Collar
  • 2 x wrist cuffs
  • 2 x ankle cuffs
  • Leash
  • O-ring
  • 4 double-ended connector clips

All the pieces are made of black silicone with gold-coloured metal accents. It’s unclear what the metal is but I’d be willing to bet it contains nickel, so be very cautious if you have an allergy.

I immediately thought this set was really pretty. The gold-on-black is striking, but understated enough to go with almost any outfit. Aesthetically, it doesn’t really lean strongly towards either a masculine or femme look.

Fit and Comfort

I wasn’t at all sure how I’d find silicone restraints, comfort-wise. As someone who has a few sensory struggles, comfort is a very high priority for me when it comes to anything that’s going to go on my body. Silicone varies wildly in terms of how soft it is as well as how “grabby” it is against skin.

The Roomfun Silicone Bondage Restraints set, fortunately, is made of lovely soft matte silicone. It’s smooth enough to glide along my skin without any uncomfortable grab, and it feels beautifully smooth to the touch. Mr CK did note that the silicone can be a bit grabby if you use it on areas with a lot of body hair.

The only real downside I noticed was that when I wear the collar for a lengthy period of time, my neck underneath it gets really hot and sweaty. This is because silicone really isn’t breathable at all. If you’re wearing it for long periods, consider taking it off occasionally to let your skin breathe. This means that I wouldn’t recommend this set if you’re looking for a “wear 24/7” type collar.

Silicone collar and leash for BDSM for Tracy's Dog review

In terms of sizing, this set is highly adjustable. With 7 holes on each wrist cuff, 5 on each ankle cuff, and 8 on the collar, it’s likely to fit the vast majority of wearers comfortably.

Construction and Useability

The pieces feel well-built and sturdy. Wearing and using them, I feel confident that I can pull and struggle if I want to (because that can be hot!) and they won’t break. The metal pieces are also sturdy. I’ve tried some restraint sets where I feel like they’d fall apart with one good tug. That’s not the case here.

Interestingly, the clip on the leash is smaller than the other clips, leading me to believe it might be less strong. Obviously you shouldn’t be tugging hard on something around someone’s neck, so it’s probably not a big deal with regards to functionality, but it’s something to be aware of.

You can use the different pieces in a variety of ways thanks to the clips. Attach your partner’s hands behind their back, clip them to restraints attached to your bed or a St Andrew’s Cross, or use the clips and ring to form a hogtie shape. Mix and match, try things out, and see what’s the most fun for you and your partner(s).

Silicone BDSM hogtie

Since silicone is non-porous and easy to clean, this set is also ideal if you like to get messy during play… or if you have multiple partners and want to use the same restraints with different people safely. I wouldn’t get it soaking wet as the metal might tarnish, but you can wipe it down with a warm damp cloth and some gentle soap or use antibacterial wipes to keep the silicone clean.

Since this set consists of quite a few separate pieces, I recommend keeping the box and divider and using them to store it all between play sessions. There’s nothing more annoying when you’re trying to set up a scene than having to rummage through your kit bag for that one cuff you can’t find!

Verdict

This set is genuinely high quality and well-made! I’m really impressed with its look, feel, comfort, and useability, and I feel confident that it’ll get plenty of use. A really solid buy if you’re new to restraints and looking for a safe, effective set, or if you’re an experienced player and looking for a change from rope or leather.

The Roomfun Silicone Bondage Restraints kit retails for $129.99 from Tracy’s Dog.

Thank you to Tracy’s Dog for sponsoring this post, which means they paid me to write an honest and unbiased review. All opinions and experiences are my own.

[Toy Review] Lovehoney Best Night Ever Couple’s Sex Toy Kit

It’s already day ten of the #12DaysofLovehoney project! After today, I have just one more review to publish and then the very special giveaway coming on Saturday. Today, we’re looking at Lovehoney’s “Best Night Ever” Couple’s Sex Toy Kit.

Oh, and while you’re here, check out the whole series!

What’s in the Box and Who Is It For?

The Best Night Ever kit is one of Lovehoney’s sex toy bundles. It includes five toys:

  • Vibrating silicone butt plug
  • Silver bullet vibe
  • Stretchy silicone cock ring that can be used with or without the bullet vibrator
  • Finger vibrator
  • Reversible penis stroker
Box of Lovehoney Best Night Ever sex toy kit for couples

This kit is designed for a couple consisting of a person with a penis and a person with a vulva. (The packaging and ad copy does, sadly, use gendered language along the “for him” and “for her” lines.) So bear that in mind as we proceed with the review. I’d love to see Lovehoney come out with some additional, similar kits that are geared at couples with two penis owners or two vulva owners!

Sex toys for couples in Lovehoney Best Night Ever kit

I thought I’d look at each item in turn, and then at the set as a whole.

Silicone Butt Plug

This is probably the best item in the kit from a quality point of view. It’s a little over 5″ in length, of which 4″ are insertable. It tapers to a narrow tip, making it comfortable to insert, and the silicone base makes it both body-safe and comfortable to wear for some time.

Silicone butt plug from Lovehoney couples sex toys kit

The silicone butt plug takes 1 AAA battery, and offers 3 vibration speeds and 7 patterns. The vibrations are mediocre in strength and fairly buzzy, but the plug itself is of great quality. If you’re looking for a basic, slimline plug, the Best Night Ever kit has got you covered.

Silver Bullet Vibe

As far as I can tell, this is near identical to the silver bullet vibe that Lovehoney sells as a separate product… and that was the first sex toy I ever bought at the tender age of 18!

It’s made of hard ABS plastic and takes one AAA battery. Like the butt plug, it features 3 speeds and 7 patterns. I think it’s the same motor that’s in the butt plug, but the vibrations feel a little stronger. That’s probably because hard plastic doesn’t dampen the vibrations in the same way that silicone does.

Still not super powerful and still pretty buzzy, but overall not a bad first vibe for someone who doesn’t need very intense stimulation to get off. My first little Lovehoney bullet vibe served me well for a good couple of years!

Cock Ring

This silicone cock ring can be used by itself or with the bullet vibe. It features two rings, one to go around the penis and one behind the testicles. The rings are very slim and stretchy, allowing them to fit snugly but comfortably around most penises.

Silver bullet vibrator and silicone cock ring

The purpose of a cock ring is to restrict blood flow out of the penis, making the wearer’s erection harder and longer lasting. At first glance, I wasn’t sure this ring would do anything. However, it’s stronger than it looks!

Using it with the bullet vibe can provide some gentle additional stimulation which can be pleasurable for both the wearer and their partner.

Finger Vibe

The finger vibrator is the weakest aspect of this kit, for me. For one thing, the ring you use to put it on your finger is ridiculously small. I have pretty tiny hands and found it too tight and uncomfortable on any but my little finger.

Finger vibrator from Lovehoney sex toys couples kit

Second, the vibrations are truly pathetic. I didn’t know it was possible for something to be so buzzy it makes my clitoris itch, but here we are. There’s no way this would ever do anything for me except numb me out and make me grumpy.

Reversible Stroker

The reversible stroker provides two different sensations. It’s tight but stretchy, so whatever size your penis is you can expect a snug and pleasurable fit. You’ll need to use plenty of lube both inside the stroker and on the penis, or it could be uncomfortable.

The reversible stroker is made of a TPE style soft plastic which, while not toxic and safe for external play, is a porous material. That means it will degrade over time. You’ll probably get a few months out of it, but I recommend investing in a silicone stroker once you’ve established that you like the sensation!

Best Night Ever Kit: Overall Contents & Value

The Best Night Ever sex toy kit is a mixed bag. The items are of decent quality and made of body-safe materials. However, where it really falls down is in the strength (or lack thereof) of the motors.

Best Night Ever sex toys for couples kit

That being said, this kit retails for a pretty affordable £39.99 ($49.99 US), which is cheaper than buying all the products separately. If you’re new to toys and just trying things out to see what you like, this kit could be a good place to start. For people who are just looking for a few basic staples, it will probably serve your needs, too. If you’re after more powerful toys, though, skip the kit and invest in one powerful vibrator instead.

Thanks to Lovehoney for sending me this product to review! Views are, as always, my own. Affiliate links appear in this and all my review posts. Want to support the blog? Buying me a coffee is a great way to do that!

[Kink Product Review] Lovehoney Take Control Bondage Kit

I often groan at the idea – and the reality – of sex toy kits. Too often, they’re lots of cheap and bad quality things shoved together in a pretty box and sold for a premium. If pressed for an opinion, I’ll nearly always tell my readers to forego a kit and spend a bit more on just one or two quality items. However, I try to keep an open mind, and occasionally something surprises me. The Take Control Bondage Kit from Lovehoney pleasantly surprised me.

The Take Control bondage kit box

Through the eyes of a beginner…

I’m practically a kinky veteran at this point. I’ve been practicing BDSM for about a decade and have accrued a sizeable collection of toys – expensive leather floggers, my fabulous vegan leather collar, the gorgeous hand-made whip I gave Mr CK last Christmas, our electro-play kit, and more. So beginner kits are not something I would ever normally buy for myself. Therefore, I am trying to step back in time ten years or so and view this kit through the eyes of someone who is just starting out in their kinky explorations.

The back of the Take Control Bondage Kit boxInviting and Fun Packaging…

The Take Control Bondage Kit comes in one simple box, with all the products clearly displayed on the front so you know exactly what to expect. The packaging is bright and fun, which I suspect is a deliberate choice to make it non-intimidating to the new and nervous.

There’s a LOT of information on the box, too. I really like the way that there’s a brief description on how to use each item on the back, and also that they pay attention to safety and consent! The box reminds you to use safewords, never leave a bound person alone, and have a non-verbal safe signal if someone is gagged. In this regard, I’m really impressed. It’s pretty 101 stuff, but safety/consent 101 is exactly the information that the target market for this kit needs. A+ for that.

Take Control Kit: the unboxing…Various kink items on a wooden floor. For a post about the Take Control bondage kit.

I wasn’t delighted with the way the box was packed – everything was just sort of piled in, each item wrapped in a cellophane wrapper. It would have been nicer to have an inner tray with slots for everything. Some little storage bags for the items would also be a welcome addition. Assuming you don’t want to throw everything back in the box when you’re done playing, it’s not an ideal storage solution.

With that said, I was immediately pretty impressed with what was inside the Take Control kit. Some (many) beginner BDSM kits are filled with things that are dubiously even safe, let alone of good quality.

Let’s take a look at what’s inside, shall we? Just for fun, I’ve included a fun tip or an idea to try with each item in the Take Control kit.

1: Blindfold

A black blindfold. For a post about the Take Control bondage kit.

This blindfold is super comfy. It’s nice and thick and padded, and I couldn’t see a thing when it was on. The band is stretchy, too, so it should fit most people comfortably.

Pro kink tip: blindfold your partner and stroke different things across their body – a silk scarf, a piece of velvet, the tails of your flogger – and make them guess what each item is.

2. Nipple suckers

A pair of purple nipple suckers. For a post about the Take Control bondage kit.

I really liked these! They’re a great gentle introduction to nipple play, and perfect if you want some sensation but without the pain of clamps or clothes pegs. I have pretty small nipples on fairly large breasts, and I found these stayed in place very nicely once I’d suctioned them onto my chest.

If you flick or hit them too hard, they will fly off, but they can withstand some gentle playing and wiggling.

Pro kink tip: tell your partner to fetch you something from another room with these on. They’ll have to move carefully… they’ll be spanked if one falls off!

3. Ball gag

A black ball gag. For a post about the Take Control bondage kit.

Full disclosure: I hate ball gags. I fucking hate them. They make my jaw hurt, they make my face contort into an expression that no-one could possibly find attractive, they make me drool, and I can’t kiss my partner when I’m wearing one. I. Hate. Them.

With that said, this is a good one if you like that sort of thing. The holes make it breathable, and being silicone it’s non-porous which makes it hygienic. The holes do make it somewhat of a pain to clean, so take extra care when you’re cleaning it. Warm water and gentle soap is the best way to go here.

I also like how adjustable this gag is. With 9 buckle holes, it will fit most people comfortably.

Pro kink tip: make your submissive try to repeat words back to you (try phrases like “I’m a dirty little slut”) while gagged.

A black flogger. For a post about the Take Control bondage kit.4. Flogger

This is a stingy little bastard! Don’t let the small size fool you, it can pack a wallop. The falls are made of thin rubber, which delivers a vicious sting when you put some force behind it. If pain isn’t your thing, you can drag it sensually across the skin for a gentle tickle. I would have liked the handle to have a bit more width and weight to it.

Pro kink tip: Try – gently – flogging the vulva or penis if your partner is up for it. Remember to clean your flogger thoroughly afterwards.

5. Wrist and ankle cuffs

A woman's hand in a black velcro cuff. For a post about the Take Control bondage kit.

These were the weakest part of the kit by far, for me. They’re quite thin and made of nylon, with no padding, which means they chafe if you put any pressure on them at all. They’re fine for exploring the feeling of being restrained, but if you’re into rough play and would be wanting to pull against them, they’re not a good option for that.

Try restraint with these, by all means, to see if you like it. But then ditch them and get some proper cuffs. And I hope it goes without saying that you should never, EVER suspend from wrist or ankle cuffs. These are not designed to take any real weight.

Pro kink tip: Restrain your partner then make them watch you masturbate in front of them.

6. Under-bed restraints

These are great, except for the tiny detail that they don’t fit on our bed! We have a Super King bed (which is the best thing ever, seriously. I always tell Mr CK that my relationship with him and the bed is polyamorous in itself.) Turns out these restraints fit up to King Size. So they’ll be fine for the vast majority of people, but if you have a ridiculous bed like us, they may not fit.

That said, they’re still a great addition to the kit. They’re strong, durable, and easy to set up… and tuck out of sight when you’re done, if you want to. The little clips mean you can easily add different cuffs to them, so when you ditch the rubbish cuffs in this set and get some better ones, you can still use them with this restraint system.

Pro kink tip: when your partner is restrained, run a cube of ice along their body… or drip candle wax onto their skin (read up on how to do wax play safely first, of course!)

7. Silicone suction-cup dildo

Do my eyes deceive me, or… no, it’s actually a body-safe dildo in a BDSM kit! With an insertable length of 6 inches and a diameter of 1.5″, this toy is perfect for vaginal play. It’s possibly a bit ambitious for first-time anal sex or pegging, but most people could easily work up to it with a bit of time and warm-up.

The slight curve makes this dildo feel delicious for G-spot or prostate stimulation, and the silicone is super soft and silky. The suction cup is also a nice addition and makes this toy more versatile.

It’s even got a convenient hollow in the base where you can slip the bullet vibe that comes with this kit to turn your dildo into a G-spot vibrator!

Remember to use water-based lube with your silicone dildo for the best experience.

Pro kink tip: tease your lover’s entrance with just the tip of the dildo. If they want it inside, they have to thrust on to it!

8. Strap-on harness

This is actually the same harness that I bought as part of a pegging kit a few years ago. I’ve used it many, many times to top for both vaginal and anal penetration, and it’s still my favourite harness. It’s comfortable, the dildo stays in place well during thrusting, and the rings are interchangeable so you can use it with any dildo with a flared base.

Pro kink tip: If you have a vulva, put on a wearable vibrator before you put on your harness, so that you get some clitoral pleasure while you fuck your partner.

9. Wired bullet vibrator

This was the biggest surprise in the Take Control kit for me. I was fully expecting it to be awful. While it’s not the strongest vibrator in the world, it’s not a bad little bullet for the size. I was able to orgasm with it quickly and easily. It has a number of patterns as well as steady vibration speeds.

I didn’t love the wire element, but you cannot expect to get a wireless bullet for this price-point. It’s long enough for one partner to comfortably have control of the remote while the other holds the vibrator against their genitals.

Pro kink tip: switch it off just when your lover is on the edge of orgasm. Make them beg for release.

Other things to note if you’re thinking of getting the Take Control kit:

  • The bullet takes 2x AAA batteries, not included.
  • There is no real leather in the Take Control kit, making it entirely vegan-friendly.

Overall Verdict: do I recommend it?

On the whole, a very solid kit for the price. I wouldn’t recommend it to folks more experienced in kink and BDSM, but for those of you who are new and looking to explore different sensations and types of power-play, this kit is a great starting point.

The Take Control kit retails for £79.99 ($99.99 US) which is a reasonable price for the quality and variety. As you get more into your kink and discover what you like, I’d encourage you to drop more money on single items if you can – a quality, handcrafted whip or flogger will last you a lifetime, perhaps, or some really high quality natural fibre rope? But to get you started? Look no further.

Thanks to Lovehoney for sending me this kit in exchange for an honest review. If you choose to purchase this or anything else from Lovehoney, please buy through my affiliate links – it supports the blog at no extra cost to you!