Blood play is an umbrella term for any erotic or sexual activity involving blood. Blood play typically involves self-harm or damaging a partner’s body to spill blood.
People may draw blood using razor blades, knives, needles or biting. Blood play may also involve smearing blood across the skin. Some participants drink or lick blood they have extracted from their partners.
However, blood play doesn’t always involve harming oneself or someone else. Enjoying foreplay and intercourse while a partner is menstruating can be a part of blood play. Some couples also use fake blood or blood-like substances, such as ketchup or wine, for blood play.
Individuals who participate in blood play often find the sight, taste, texture, and smell of blood erotic and sensual. Some may also find the pain of extracting blood sexually stimulating.
People interested in blood play often have a blood fetish, or hematolagnia. They may also have an interest in other forms of edgeplay, including knife play.
An interest in blood play may also go hand in hand with an interest in medical play or surgical play for some people. These people typically enjoy blood play with scalpels and other medical tools.
Many blood fetishists also state that blood play helps forge and strengthen their bonds with their partners.