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Candlelight Moments: Basics of Wax Play

Author: Norische

Filed in: how-to, wax play

For many wax play is one of the first experiences within the BDSM realm, this is also the reason that so many people end up getting accidentally hurt. All too often someone is watching a pornographic movie and sees someone drip wax on his or her partner and suddenly they are rummaging through their kitchen cabinets looking for a candle that they can experiment with. “It looked so easy in the movie…” or “The women in the movie seemed to really like it so...” are phrases the emergency room staff have undoubtedly heard time and time again. Although most individuals probably make up some story about accidentally dropping a candle on their naked genitals or knocking a candle over and splashing wax all over their bare back as they turned; having worked in an ER I myself heard a few excuses such as these, although you honestly are suspicious about the method of the injury the means is always quite clear. Wax play done improperly can lead to first and second-degree burns, pain and permanent scarring.

Although wax play is simplistic in nature there are a few very basic safety tips and details that you need to know prior to exploring the wondrous avenue.

First, like with any BDSM play; know your weapon. There are several things you must know about the wax you are using before you can use it.

What type of wax are you using? Each type of wax has a different melting point. The melting point is the temperature that the wax must be to go from solid to liquid and remain so.

Type of Wax Melting point Fahrenheit

Paraffin 120 – 145 degrees

Low temp wax 120 – 125 degrees

Standard jar candles 125 – 135 degrees

Standard pillar candles 135 – 140 degrees

Bee’s wax candles 140 – 155 degrees

Oil based candles 165 – 190 degrees

Gel jar candles 165 – 180 degrees

Is it scented or unscented? The addition of scents or scented oils may entice the senses but they also raise the melting point of wax between 5 and 10 degrees. Take this into consideration before you put any candle into use. Massaging the body with scented oils prior to wax play also effects the skins reaction to the wax itself. Although it does not affect the heat of the wax it does effect the time it takes for the wax to cool as well as whether the skin will radiate the heat or hold the heat in. Using an oil on the skin prior to wax play will help prevent the wax from sticking to the skin, and body hair (if any is present) it also makes clean up much easier. When you use oil however make sure you allow for a longer cooling time and that you monitor the skin closely. If the skin is warm to the touch then but there is no visible discoloration, it is safe to continue. If the skin is pink and warm to the touch, I suggest use caution and slow down a little. If the skin is bright pink or red and hot to the touch then stop immediately and apply a cool compress to the skin, do not put ice directly to the burn, as it may cause additional tissue damage.

Is the candle you are using colored, uncolored or is it clear/white in the center and colored on the outside? Whenever you use colored wax please make sure to allow for approximately 5 and 10 degrees difference. On a candle that has a white or clear center and colored outside, you do not need to compensate, normally these candles are designed to burn down the center and do not actually burn the colored areas at all.

By using the above calculations a standard white unscented pillar candle has a melting point between 135 – 140 degrees, the same candle, cinnamon scented in red will change the melting point of that candle to between 145 – 160 degrees. This takes the experience from being pleasurable to being painful all the way to being harmful.

You can use any candle for wax play as long as you compensate and use the proper precautions. If you are using a hotter wax, simply increase the distance from the candle to the skin when dripping it onto the body. I always test the wax on myself prior to dripping it onto my slave/sub, this way I will be aware of the level of pain and or pleasure that should be expected. Normally I start the candle out at around 36 inches above the skin, and slowly lower it every few drops until I get the desired affect.

Also keep in mind that different parts of the body can stand different levels of heat. Never do wax play above the shoulders, there is too great a risk of burning the eyes, or getting wax in the mouth or nose, this may lead to choking or asphyxiation. Some believe that if you put fabric or a hood over the face that you can proceed with the wax play, I personally find the risk still to great. The breast and genitals can be included in wax play as long as you remember that this skin is highly sensitive and the healing time for a burn in these areas are painful and may last for an inconveniently long time.

One scene I would like to describe for you has been one of my favorites, I have always been a sadistic bitch and I enjoy every moment of it. It was a cold winters day, snow was maybe 8 inches deep and outside it was probably only in the upper teens, so I decided to do a little wax play with my male submissive. I had him blindfolded and secured on a low table with a plastic sheet underneath him. I let him lay there relaxing as I warmed the paraffin in the vat, I use a simple paraffin spa that I picked up at Wal-Mart it can hold up to 10 pounds of paraffin, although when it is that full it does take a while to melt down. Once the wax had melted I spent a little time rubbing my submissive down with unscented oil, and massaging him a little. Then I used a ladle to pour wax directly onto his lower abdomen, at first he was a little leery I suppose due to the heat but he began to relax quickly. I let the wax run down his stomach onto his crotch and begin to pool between his legs. As he became more comfortable with the heat, I began to poor the wax directly onto his genitals, from his facial expressions I could tell there was some discomfort there but nothing he couldn’t handle. The next thing I did is where the sedition comes in, as soon as I poured a ladle of wax on him I dumped a handful of snow on his crotch right behind it. Back and forth between hot and cold, over and over again he had goose bumps and was sweating all in the same moment. I never allowed the snow to make direct contact with the skin for more than a few seconds but the effect was dramatic. I ended by scrapping the wax from his body by using a very dull knife (basically the equivalent of a butter knife). The entire experience was extremely exhilarating and enjoyable for both of us.

When talking to betsy, my submissive she explained her first experience with wax play in a very different manner.

“My first experience with wax play was not a good one. My 1st Dominant was unfortunately for me a wanna be Dom. He had decided that wax play sounded good, but he had no experience with wax at all. He went down to Wal-Mart and bought a box of the Gulf Wax brand paraffin, and an acrylic paintbrush, this should have immediately told me he was inexperienced. He brought over a cheap aluminum pot and melted the wax and stirred it with the acrylic paintbrush, leaving the acrylic paintbrush sitting in the melted wax. My first taste wax play was the brush being taken directly from the pan and whapped on my breast; he allowed the brush to lay against my skin for about a minute. I ended up with a first degree burn over one third of my left breast, the area was red for over a week and remained tender to the touch for about the next three weeks! After the initial damage was done, he proceeded to paint my breast with the brush, adding layer upon layer of wax; not realizing that by layering the wax it was actually holding in the heat and not allowing the skin to cool down between layers. This Dom made three big mistakes. First acrylic is plastic and melts, so when he left the paintbrush in the pan it was actually melting it and mixing it with the wax. Second, he did not test the temperature on himself first; he laid the brush on my breast without draining the excess wax from the brush or even checking to see how hot it was. Third, he layered the wax without thinking about how hot it would get. What could have and should have been a wonderful sensual scene turned into a disaster. Needless to say – i lost trust for this Dominant rather quickly.”

After you are familiar with the effects of wax, now we must move on to the application. As with betsy’s experience you may use a brush, please be intelligent and use a natural fiber brush, you can get them in any hardware or lumber store. Another means of application is pouring the wax on by using a ladle or cup, even directly from the jar itself, in these cases please remember to test out the temp and allow for the proper height in order to avoid unnecessary burns. Another method is by using gauze or material, simply dip the gauze or fabric in the wax and gently lay it directly on the skin, when the wax cools you can add another layer of gauze or fabric or you can simply pour more wax directly onto the material. An inexpensive alternative to medical gauze is shop towels, they are purchased by the role like paper towels but they are much thicker and inexpensive. Simply cut the shop towels to the appropriate width and dip them in the vat, make sure to squeeze out the excess wax before applying the towel to the skin. Another method of application is the use of a turkey baster, again remember to test on your own skin before you squirt this on someone else.


If you are wanting more color and don’t want to risk using a colored candle, try melting a crayon in the wax, it will add color but will not raise the melting point of the wax.

When ever you play with hot items be sure to have a container of cold water and towels near by incase of an accident.

Whenever you are using a lit candle make sure that you do not have on acrylic or polyester clothing, if wax gets on these fabrics it can cause the fabric to melt to your skin. Also make sure that you do not have long sleeves that may catch fire or be dipped in the vat by accident.

The first time you experiment with wax please make sure to take your time and test the wax on yourself prior to using on another individual.

If you don’t know, ask. Others that have experience with wax love telling interesting stories about their adventures and can entice some excellent ideas.

Like with all my articles these are my opinions only, please take what you wish and leave the rest. If you wish to contact me, my email address is


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