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A soft limit is a negotiable limit that is set before engaging in BDSM play. A soft limit is something that either the dominant or submissive may not be comfortable with at the time of negotiation, but may participate in it after regular play with the same person, only with a certain person, or only in a certain play situation. It differs from a hard limit because it's flexible.
In BDSM, couples set limits to ensure that both partners remain safe and within the bounds of what they're willing to do. Soft limits can be changed and molded over time as a couple's level of trust grows in a long-term relationship.