If you suspect you’re in a sexual rut, or you’re just naturally curious about trying something new, maybe you’re ready to enter the world of kinks and fetishes.

The phrase “kink” broadly encompasses any nontraditional sexual practice, fantasy or concept, while fetishes describe a specific sexual attraction to nonsexual objects, body parts or situations. Ergo, all fetishes are kinks, in that they’re nontraditional, but not all kinks are fetishes.

Kinks are used to enhance sex but aren’t necessary for arousal or climax. People with fetishes, however, may always need their specific interests to be included in sexual play in order to get sufficiently aroused.

No matter the sexual preferences you enjoy, it’s important to know you’re not alone. People of all backgrounds, ages, sexual orientations, genders and cultures practice kinks. Equally, there’s nothing about how a person looks or acts that decisively identifies them as a kinky person, which means you cannot assume your partner wants to experience the same type of sexual play you do.

If you’re open to kink exploration or you’d like to safely experiment with a fetish, you’ll need to rely on the same open, nonjudgmental communication required for