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Latex Fetish

Updated: JUNE 13, 2023
Reviewed by Dr. Sunny Rodgers
on June 3, 2023

A latex fetish is a strong sexual interest involving latex items, usually apparel and accessories. People with this fetish may want to wear latex themselves, feel attracted to others who wear latex pieces, or both. A latex fetish is sometimes called a rubber latex fetish.

People with a latex fetish may be referred to as rubberists. The term rubbermen specifically refers to homosexual male rubberists.

Rubberists may wear specialized latex fetish wear or ask their sexual partners to wear these clothes. They may also admire people they don’t know wearing latex fetish wear, either in person, at parties or fetish events, or online in latex fetish porn.

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Types of Latex Fetish Wear

There are many types of latex fetish wear. Latex hoods, which cover the head and face, are a popular piece of latex fetish wear. Many of these hoods only have holes for the eyes, nostrils and mouth, giving the wearer a sense of anonymity that can be arousing for people who wear and view them. Some latex hoods cover the eyes and nostrils for sensory deprivation, while leaving the mouth exposed for gags or oral sex. There are also latex hoods that only cover the head and leave the full face exposed. Short and long latex gloves may also satisfy a latex fetish. Also, because they resemble surgical gloves, they also suit medical role-play. Latex suits, which cover the whole body, can also appeal to rubberists.

People with a latex rubber fetish may also enjoy wearing or watching people in everyday items made of latex rubber, including wetsuits, Wellington boots and rubber pants. They may also derive sexual pleasure from other items made from rubber latex, including dildos, butt plugs, medical gloves and catheters.

A latex fetish is closely related to a PVC fetish, as both fetishes involve an attraction to tight, glossy materials. However, latex rubber is usually thicker and less glossy than PVC. Due to the similarities between the materials, some rubberists also have a parallel fetish for PVC.

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More About Latex Fetish

There are few studies on the prevalence of a latex fetish. However, a 2021 Polish study found 82% of people who wear latex feel sexually stimulated by wearing the material, while 70% of people surveyed with an interest in latex that didn't wear the material said they were sexually stimulated by it.

Why are people into latex?

People who identify as rubberists and others interested in wearing or admiring latex appreciate this material for various reasons, which may overlap. The Polish study found that 95% of wearers and 81% of non-wearers love latex apparel because the skin-tight material shows off the body. Some suggest the tight material acts as a second skin or even serves as a type of bondage tool. Around 90% of people like the look and shine of the material and 83% of wearers said they liked how latex feels on their body. Fetishes also tend to have a cultural component.

It’s not just the look and feel of latex rubber that appeals to latex fetishists. Many fetishists are also aroused by the material’s distinctive smell. Some latex garments have chemicals that enhance their natural odor. The sound of latex also appeals to more than half of wearers and non-wearers. Rubberists who love the feel, smell and sound of latex may enjoy engaging in sensation play involving this material. This may involve one or more sexual partners caressing one another while wearing latex. While some people enjoy the muted sensations that come from regular latex, others prefer wearing ultra-thin latex for sensation play. Latex hoods, which cover the eyes, ears and nose can also enhance sensation play by reducing some sensations to heighten others. Some rubberists enjoy playing with latex sex toys during sensation play as well.

Ways Latex Fetishists Like to Play

Pet play, where one or more participants role-play as a pet, is another activity some rubberists engage in. Pet masks, paw mitts, ears and tails help rubberists interested in pet play get into character. They may drink or eat from bowls, move on all fours, play, and make animal noises. Some pet play involves a dominant, who may reward or punish their pet for obeying or disobeying commands.

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Rubberists may enjoy wearing latex rubber apparel or seeing their partners wear the material in the privacy of their own homes, at sex parties and other fetish events, or out in public. Some people say wearing latex makes them feel more confident. Wearing latex rubber in public can be a form of exhibitionism that’s highly arousing for rubberists. They may also fantasize about themselves and other people wearing rubber latex.

Rubberists may find themselves drawn to others required to wear rubber latex, like divers, industrial workers and dominatrixes. They may also find partners and people who share their sexual preference at events held at latex fetish clubs, private fetish parties and online forums. Along with helping rubberists connect with sexual partners, these places can introduce rubberists to new friends and help them feel less isolated in their interests.

When a Latex (or Any) Fetish Becomes a Problem

A rubber latex fetish is perfectly normal and most rubberists simply accept the fetish as part of their sexuality. However, if the fetish interferes with normal relationships and a rubberist’s professional or personal life, they may like to talk to a therapist.

"Working with a therapist can create a safe space for you to explore and understand your fetish, leading to self-acceptance and effective coping mechanisms for any distress or conflicts that may arise. It's not uncommon to feel shame or guilt about your fetish. Therapy can help you confront and manage these negative emotions, fostering self-esteem and a healthier relationship with your desires," explained Aliyah Moore, Ph.D., a certified sex therapist and writer. She encourages anyone interested in therapy for a latex fetish to browse online resources dedicated to kink to find open-minded therapists specializing in alternative sexualities, kinks and BDSM.

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"In the end, therapy is a personal choice, and it's important to ensure it aligns with your own goals and desires for personal growth. If you're content with your fetish and it doesn't cause any distress or impair your daily life or relationships, seeking therapy may not be necessary," Moore said.

How and Where to Buy Latex Fetish Wear

Latex fetish clothes and apparel are readily available in fetish clothing stores and online. Wearing latex can be an intense sensation, so it’s best to start small, perhaps with a pair of latex gloves, latex undergarments, or a latex skirt or pair of shorts. After people feel comfortable, they tend to add to their collections. Thicker latex garments with a high gauge are very durable, but less flexible, so shoppers should consider what they’re looking for in a garment. Experts recommend lower gauge garments of 0.4 mm to 0.5 mm for beginners. These garments are less likely to make wearers feel claustrophobic, overheated or dehydrated. Taking personal measurements and comparing them to the size guide can help people get the right fit for their latex fetish wear as well. Choosing clothes two or three inches smaller can help rubberists who like feeling bound by latex achieve the sensations they’re after.

Latex fetish gear is usually sold unpolished. Washing it with a gentle, pH-neutral soap can remove any talc used for shipping. Excess moisture can then be patted away, and latex items can be hung to drip dry. A silicone-based latex care product can nourish the material and safely add a pleasing, shiny finish.

How to Clean and Care for Latex Fetish Wear

Since rubber latex is so tight, specialized fetish apparel made from this material can be difficult to put on. Using excessive force can tear latex garments, so it’s best to lube up the body and the inside and outside of the clothes or accessories with silicone lubricant to make dressing easier. Oils, such as oil-based lubricants and essential oils, can degrade latex. Wearing disposable latex gloves while dressing can prevent the transfer of oils from the skin to latex fetish items. It’s best to avoid using talcum powder as a lubricant, as these can contain fragrances and other additives which may damage the latex. Baby talc may be suitable as it’s usually free of additives.

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Rubber latex needs proper care to maintain its good looks. Washing garments after use with pH-neutral soap and patting them dry can remove sweat and other bodily fluids. Metals including copper, brass, or bronze can stain latex, so it’s best to avoid wearing jewelry with latex gloves and store latex fetish gear with studs or metal details separately. Cosmetics, moisturizers and perfumes may also harm latex.

After cleaning, rubberists can store latex fetish gear in a cool, dry space away from sunlight, such as a closet. Moisture-absorbing products can ensure fetish gear stays dry and free from mold. Storing light- and dark-colored items separately can prevent colored latex bleeding. Breathable, lint-free garment bags are ideal for the safe storage of latex fetish gear.

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