10 Shades of Stupid: Cosmo's Worst BDSM Tips

I knew this was coming when the cashier in Barnes and Nobles saw me looking at Fifty Shades of Grey and stage-whispered: "I bought that for my mom, and now I'm just terrified that I'm going to go home and find my dad. In a cage. Bleeding or dead." BDSM is like soccer and socialized medicine; fascinating, but hard for a lot of Americans to understand. Cosmo's trying to help with their August issue, which features a twist on their usual bouquet of sex tips: this time, all their tips are inspired by Fifty Shades of Grey.

Now, say what you will about Grey, but it is about BDSM. It cannot (and must not!) be forgiven for introducing millions of Americans to lines like "My inner goddess is doing the merengue, with some salsa moves," but there's some pretty kinky shit in there. And it's nice to see a national women's magazine with a feature purportedly dedicated to BDSM. But I've got to tell you: Cosmo's BDSM tips make Fifty Shades of Grey look like The Story of O.

1. "Graze your teeth over his index finger (it is the fleshiest and can handle the pressure) while he's taking you from behind."

"It is the fleshiest and can handle the pressure" sounds like something screamed at me from the top of a dry well in a Midwestern basement.

2. "During sex, stick your finger in his mouth and order him to suck it."

How very dominant. Here's another: "Lie limply on your back and order him to have gentle sex with you while staring into your eyes."

3. "Use your bra to bind his hands behind his back, then cover your nipples in yummy toppings and command him to lick them off."

First off: this is cheating. This tip is in literally every issue. They just kinked up the verbiage a little. Secondly, he might actually find this humiliating, less in a sexy sense and more in a "There's a nipple's worth of peanut butter in my nose" sense.

4. "Press a fork (firmly, but don't break the skin or anything) into different parts of his body — his butt cheeks, his pecs, his thighs."

This was clearly written at lunchtime, after a morning spent rummaging around the office for kinkspiration. Rejected options: "Hold a blueberry muffin in your fist and punch him in the mouth." "Pretend to be a naughty piece of printer paper and tell him to 'staple' you." "Act like a PDF and order him to 'fax me hard.' Make all relevant noises."

Incidentally, if the women who read Cosmo need to be cautioned against stabbing someone with a fork hard enough to break the skin, then their partners are going to need more than a safe word.

5. "Tie his silky tie loosely around his penis, then roll it up and down for a silky handjob."

I guess this one counts as BDSM, if you get off on watching chicks destroy your formal wear. It should be noted, though, that this sex act is approved by neither Brooks Brother. Dangerous.

6. "Use the back of a brush to swat his thighs when he steps out of the shower — wet skin is more sensitive."

To increase the arousing nature of this kinky surprise, I'd suggest you get up early, before he's awake, hide behind the toilet with a towel over your head, clutching the brush with both hands, and give a little war-whoop when you start swatting. That ought to really blow his mind.

7. "As you're riding him, clamp down on his earlobes with your fingers, and pull on them to rock yourself forward and backward."

Pro-tip: if you're new to this game, stick with the sturdy body parts — like butts and chests — and be a little more delicate if you're going for the ears, eyes, or testicles. That stuff's not off-limits (in theory), but given that you may already be holding a fork in this scenario, it seems wise to err on the side of caution.

8. "Quiz him — what's your favorite flower, movie, etc. — and if he gets it right, he's earned ten seconds of oral. Wrong and you drizzle candle wax (use a massage candle, which won't burn) on his chest."

At first glance, this sounds fun — a little power-play, and some of that gold standard of the bodice-ripper: candle wax. At second glance, it starts to seem a little less fun: you're now actively punishing your partner for his inability to memorize your favorite flower. And that's a little less transgressive and a little more regressive. ("Slave, do you ever listen to me?")

9. "Out at dinner, massage him over his pants - stop when he becomes hard. You want him to squirm throughout the meal like a two-year-old who needs to pee."

No, stop. Cut it out. Restaurants are places full of people working and eating who have not consented to be part of your sex games. And yes, everyone can see. Oh, and conflating over-the-pants stealth handies with the image of a "two-year old who needs to pee" is just... ew.

10. "Put a bunch of (clean!) loose change in the freezer for an hour. Tell him to slick your vulva with warming lube, then cover it with coins (outside only!). The cold against the warm? Incredible."

I've been bouncing this one around in my head for a couple days, and I think I have to give respect where it's due: the level of specificity, coupled with the dirty-Martha-Stewart intensity of actually washing coins (at least an hour before sex!) is just sublime. They're really swinging for the fences here. Now, will it actually be pleasurable? Who wants to slather up their vulva with warming lube, then dot it with frozen coins and get back to me?

Want even more BDSM tips from Cosmo? Head as fast as your Master allows over to Nerve for more Cosmo gems.


This post originally appeared on Nerve. Republished with permission.

Want to see your work here? Email us!