How to Use Nipple Clamps

Nipple clamps may seem like the tamest sex toy in the world, but they have plenty of power. They pinch the nipples to increase sensation, and if you know how to use them—or have a partner who knows—they can be (delightfully) painful. But pain should feel exciting and intense, not aversive, and if it doesn’t feel that way for you, loosen the grips or take them off altogether.

There are many types of nipple clamps, and each will function slightly differently. But for most, the key is to prep the area before pinching. You can do this by touching the breast, sucking on the nipples, or gently sucking and tickling the areolas with your fingertips. Adding some extra stimulation before you put the clamps on can build the sensations and prepare you for the pain, says Dr. Allison Poppel, a sex and intimacy specialist.

To avoid any discomfort while using nipple clamps, it’s a good idea to start off with the lightest setting. “It’s okay to leave it on for a few minutes to see how you feel, but don’t overdo it,” Poppel says. “If you’re feeling like there’s too much pressure or that it’s too painful, just move on to another setting or use a different toy.”

For the ultimate nipple experience, try magnetic clamps. These are more advanced than the tweezer-like clamps that we mentioned earlier. The magnets are constantly trying to touch each other, and as they do, the nipples get pinched, which can be intense. Sparks recommends starting off with the lightest setting and tightening it gradually, checking in with yourself to gauge how much pressure feels good.

Besides pinching the nipples, nipple clamps can also stimulate other sensitive erogenous zones like the areola and the neck. Some nipple clamps even come with feather ticklers that you can graze against your chest and nipples. It’s also important to let the clamps off slowly as you exhale. As soon as the blood rushes back into the nipples, they’ll become super-sensitive again—in a good way.

There’s something to be said for nipple play—it can feel amazing and can even lead to nipple orgasms. If you aren’t a fan of pain or want to explore the sensations of nipple play without any pressure, we suggest that you try some nipple suckers toys instead. They’re less expensive, and some have a more playful vibe, too. Just be careful with these because they aren’t as safe and secure as nipple clamps.

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