Fetlife is a great online resource for kinksters, but what if you haven't signed up yet or know anything about it? If you haven't read any of our previous articles on Fetlife.com, let our review enlighten you.

 

1. FetLife Review: A kink dating site that isn't a dating site

The best way to get dates is to know lots of people who're into the same things as you. Like Fetish.com, FetLife is free to join, although there's an inexpensive membership package that helps support the site and comes with a few extra perks. There is a vast range of features, but at the heart of Fetlife is tens of thousands of groups – you can use these to find people who share your fetishes, live near you or even like to play the same board games.

Fetlife isn't a fetish dating site per se, but on the other hand, its strategy is probably more useful for those of you who would like to be beaten by someone you know rather than a total stranger. 

Screenshot of groups on Fetlife
Some of the many groups on Fetlife.
 

2. FetLife Review: A sense of community is its strength

But in some ways, that strength can also be a weakness. After all, a social community based on sex poses a lot of challenges. Just because you and a friend are into the same thing doesn't mean you want to talk to about your shared interests on a dating site. However, if you think of FetLife as a kinky Facebook, instead of a kinky OKCupid, you may find out more about your friends than you ever wanted to as a result.

Or, indeed, you might worry that they'll know a little bit more about you. That may seem strange, considering that the whole idea of Fetlife is to talk about what you like to do in the bedroom, sex club, elaborately-furnished dungeon or public place. But the anonymity – or pseudonymity – of most dating sites somehow makes it easier to talk about what you like. I don't mind speaking in front of a bunch of strangers, but my ex is on there. We're still friends and I trust her not to point and laugh, but I can't be the only person who feels awkward talking about his sex life in front of his ex. 

So what can you do if you feel a little uncomfortable opening up on FetLife – besides lump it, that is? The answer is simple, take a look at your fellow kinksters' profiles.

 

3. FetLife Review: The community has variety

And I don't mean variety in the type and quality of dick pics (although there are many of those, a lot of them are a little more restrained). Check out the list of kinks, too – some of them are incredibly explicit, while others give a sense of general interest. You can provide as much or as little information on yourself as you want. Once you've gotten to know someone within your groups, you can open up to them directly regarding your interest in, for example, branding, in a way you might not to your whole kinky social network.

The question of openness on FetLife is a direct consequence of the fusion of social media and kink. Social media sites are all about forming bonds with people you don't necessarily know very well. You could say the same concerning dating sites – perhaps with a different kind of “bonds” – but as a community, we haven't quite worked out what the etiquette is yet.
 

Got something to say about Fetlife? Let us know in the comments below or in our forum.

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SirPhileasFlogg

Posted

I would have to say that the best part about Fetlife is that it does not police posts as rigorously as some sites like to do. So one is generally able to post a picture, a writing, or a comment on a forum without "adult supervision."

Almost equally useful is the fact that if you don't like someone, you can just block them. You don't have to interact with them, don't have to talk to them or trick them into responding to you just so you can have the choice of not seeing them. Click block, they're none the wiser.

One other thing is that you can't just click a button and share what I've written on your Pinterest or Twitter. I mean... seriously!!?? 

Final point, it is very rare that you come across a profile with a single picture (clearly lifted from Instagram) and the words paypig/human cash machine.

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