Here’s Why Kinky Sex Feels So Good, According To Science

A new study reveals the real reason why it's fun to get freaky in the bedroom...
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A new study reveals the real reason why it's fun to get freaky in the bedroom...
(Photo: Getty)

(Photo: Getty)

Aside from being kind and virtuous and stuff, kinky is one of the best things you can be. Why? Well, first off, kinky sex is good for you--it keeps your stress levels low and your mental health in check. It’s kind of counterintuitive, right? Being a freak keeps you sane. Ha.

And guess what else? Kink is waaay more common than you’d expect, with research showing that about half of all people have had some kind of freaky sex at some point, and a whopping 84 percent saying they'd like a little more kink in their lives.

So, now that we’ve established that kink is awesome and people love it, here’s the real question: Why do people love BDSM so much? What is it about handcuffs, nipple clamps, and even leashes that's so endearing? Hmmm…

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According to a highly informative article on the wild world of BDSM by Broadly, indulging in some kinky Fifty Shades-style sex takes your brain to a magical, otherworldly, pleasure-induced place called “subspace.”

If you’ve ever had kinky sex, you already know what this subspace feels like, and you know that it’s goddamn amazing. But in case you haven’t, it’s a “floaty” or “high” feeling that comes from the huge rush of endorphins that floods your body, courtesy of the sheer pleasure of living out your freakiest fantasies.

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"For all of us, endorphins bind to opiate receptors to naturally relieve pain," professional dominatrix Maitresse Madeline Marlowe told Broadly. "Since BDSM play can include power exchange and masochistic acts, endorphins are one of the most common neurotransmitters [produced].”

Cool stuff, my friends. BDSM play sometimes hurts, but in conjunction with something that feels as amazing as sex, that pain turns into pleasure. Besides, you know what they say: pleasure is the child of pain.

"Like many potentially stressful or extreme experiences (e.g., sky-diving, fire-walking), individuals' bodies react to that stress when they engage in BDSM," Science of BDSM researcher Kathryn Klement told Broadly

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"We interpret these cortisol results to mean that when people engage in BDSM play (as the receiver of sensations) or extreme rituals, their bodies release a hormone usually associated with stress. However, we've also found that people subjectively report their psychological stress decreasing, so there is a disconnect between what the body is experiencing, and what the individual is perceiving."

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In layman’s terms, kinky sex is physically stressful shit, and your body freaks out a little, and your adrenals release the stress hormone, cortisol, to compensate. Normally, stressful situations where cortisol floods your body puts you into “fight or flight” mode, which is what happens if you were about get attacked by a pit bull or something. As you might guess, this stress response is very useful, but doesn’t feel very good, considering your brain automatically thinks you’re in serious danger.

With BDSM, however, you still get that same stress response physically, but your psychological stress decreases, so what you're left with is a delicious, feel-good cocktail of endorphins, all without your brain telling you you’re about to die. This is what makes you feel floaty and downright wonderful. Sounds good, huh?

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Damn, that was a lot of information. To make things easier, let's recap the reasons why kinky sex feels so good:

  1. Endorphins
  2. Reduced psychological stress
  3. Sex is cool

Yup, that's about it. BDSM play feels incredible because your body gets flooded with endorphins, and your psychological stress decreases. And because sex feels really good. The more you know!

H/T: Broadly