Knife Play

Updated: NOVEMBER 8, 2022
Reviewed by Kinkly Staff
on November 7, 2022

Knife play is a BDSM activity that involves blades (knives, swords, or daggers, for example) as a means of producing physical and mental stimulation. A knife can be used to subdue a submissive, cut off clothing or bondage, scrape off wax from wax play, or be heated or cooled for temperature play. Knife play is often used in dominant/submissive scenes in which the dominant uses the knife as a form of consensual power and control over the submissive.

Because knives are inherently dangerous, they can produce an adrenaline response, which can make play more intense. Those who enjoy knife play also say that the sense of danger they invoke can help them achieve complete submission to their dominant. Knife play can lead to blood play, but knife play typically does not involve breaking the skin.

More About Knife Play

Knife play is nothing new in the BDSM world, but like many types of play, it has gotten a few moments in the limelight. Actress Angelina Jolie mentioned engaging in knife play in an interview with Barbara Walters on "20/20" way back in 2003. Quotes from this interview have re-emerged many times since, including on viral TikTok videos in the 2020s.

Knife play can be dangerous if not handled carefully. A sharp blade can cause deep cuts, leading to major blood loss. As a result, this activity should be done only with the utmost attention, care and knowledge. Couples who want to try knife play should first seek out educational resources around the topic or find experienced practitioners in their area who teach courses or can provide advice and guidance. In terms of a few general guidelines, it is a good idea to practice knife play with something that isn't a knife (like a credit card) before trying the real thing, to always have a safeword and to keep first aid supplies on hand in case of nicks and cuts. Aftercare following intense scenes like this is also key.

Knife play is typically considered a form of edgeplay. Experienced players suggest that it should not be undertaken unless the submissive trusts the dominant with their life.


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