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Wax Play Guide

Wax play is a form of temperature play practised in BDSM. The idea of wax play is to give a slight burning sensation to the skin, if done correctly it is more erotic than painful. Intense, sensual, soothing or exciting, wax play can be all of this and more.

As a moderately advanced form of play many people avoid it. Since it involves open flame, there are some risks involved, when done incorrectly it can lead to serious, permanent damage. Plus it can be very messy. However; with the right knowledge and precautions wax play can be safe and fun.

Do Your Research

I advise that you research any new sexual practice before trying it. Advanced BDSM in particular needs more planning and consideration. This article should help you prepare for a safe and sensual wax play experience.

Not All Candles Are Designed For Wax Play!

Ordinary candle wax is not designed to touch skin! Never use standard candles for wax play. EVER.

The thing about 'normal' candles is that they usually aren't just wax. Many of them are coloured, scented and full of chemicals. This is great for ambience, but not for pouring on another human being.

Candles that aren't designed for wax play can be catastrophically hot and cause serious burns. Beeswax, stearin and metallic salts in particular, burn very hot, great for setting the mood, not for skin.

Wax play candles are simple and basic, not highly scented or decorated. They are safe. They are the ONLY choice for this type of play.

Safety first

As with all BDSM practices safety is paramount. It is important to have a safeword in case the scene gets too much.

Never pour wax on a cut, eczema or sunburn.

Do not put the flame to the skin. Fire play is a type of edgeplay, a much more dangerous sexual practice for those most advanced in BDSM.

When practising more advanced play it is a good idea to keep a first aid kit handy, just in case.

Make sure you discuss how far you are willing to go before you start the scene. Let your partner know if there are any places you do not want them to put wax.

Before you light any candles make sure the area is clear and uncluttered. In particular make sure that there are no flammable materials in close proximity to the open flames. Do not leave lit candles unattended.

Bear in mind that wax can damage clothing, furniture, walls and flooring. I recommend using an old sheet to cover the bed/furniture/floor. That way you can lie on top of the sheet and once you are finished brush the dried wax off of your skin, step off of the sheet and roll it up without getting wax everywhere. Avoid wax play on or near carpet & rugs as wax will stain and stick to pile fibers. Many kinky play spaces do not allow wax play. If you aren't playing at home, be sure to ask whoever is in charge of the space.


Heat causes a different type of pain, your pain tolerance may differ from one kind of pain to another. Just because someone likes being flogged until they cry, doesn't mean they will like the sting of hot wax. Always test the candle on the inside of your OWN wrist before playing to make sure it isn't too hot. Then, test it on your partner’s wrist. Never pour hot wax onto the body without testing it first. Remember, pain tolerance to heat varies person to person.

Body parts

Avoid wax play on the face! Facial skin is thin and delicate, making it more susceptible to serious burns and scaring. Getting wax in your eyes can cause blindness.

Wax is for external play only. NEVER put hot wax in any orifices.

Try starting with the inner thigh or lower back then work your way up to more sensitive areas. Although there is no need to shy away from erogenous zones, they should be approached even more carefully. The sensitivity of each body part varies with each person so it is important to go slowly and communicate throughout.


If you or your partner is new to wax play try burning the candle to the point where there is a small pool of liquid wax in the middle. Run your finger along the edge collecting the soft wax (this prevents the finger from being burnt). Take your wax-covered finger and dip it into the liquid wax. Then place your finger on the body of the person being pleasured. This allows for sensual touching to play a larger role in the scene. This method is also perfect for more sensitive parts of the body, such as the nipples and neck.

Once you are more confident you can try dripping. Start by using a small amount of wax on your partner. Do not hold the candle too close to the skin; holding the candle about 18 inches above your partner gives the wax a second to cool as it falls to the skin, as well as giving you enough control over where the wax is dripping. Holding the candle too high above the body increases the risk of splashing, which may result in wax hitting a more sensitive body part, as well as making a mess.


After you are done take the time to discuss what you did and didn't like, what you would like to do again and what you would like to try differently.

It is natural for the skin where the wax has been to be red after play, like it has been in a hot shower. Soothe the skin by applying aftersun or burn cream.


- Tie long hair back, wax is difficult to get out.

- Rotate the candle so that the wax burns evenly and stays clean.

- Wax works best on waxed/shaved or naturally hairless skin.

- If you find the wax is still quite soft on the skin once it has dried, use ice to harden it, making it easier to peel off with less mess.

As with most things, with more practice comes more skill. You will learn the best techniques for you and your partner as long as you communicate honestly about your experiences. Just enjoy the journey.