Sensory Deprivation: What Is It and How Can It Improve Sex?

by Audrey Andrews

on Feb 5, 2019

Sensory Deprivation: What Is It and How Can It Improve Sex?

Normally when you’re having mind-blowing sex, you don’t want to miss a thing.

The way your lover looks, the feel of their skin against yours, the naughty words they’re whispering into your ear.

So why would you want to try sensory deprivation?

While the term suggests you’re missing out on something, sensory deprivation during sex is actually more like taking part in a trade.

By momentarily sacrificing one of your senses, you could end up having the raunchiest sex of your life.

When I read the words 'sensory deprivation', I immediately think about those tanks of salt water you can pay to float in at spas and shopping malls (I can't help myself).

But this isn't the kind of sensory deprivation we're talking about.

What is Sensory Deprivation?

Sensory deprivation involves taking away one or more of the senses during play. By doing this, the remaining senses become heightened.

A blindfold may plunge you into darkness, for example, causing your sense of hearing to go into overdrive. This is because your brain is all about efficiency.

The energy and processing power that would normally be devoted to helping you see is rewired, boosting your hearing instead.

This sensory imbalance can make for more exciting foreplay and sex.

Sensory deprivation is often considered part of the BDSM scene because it can be used in a Domination/submission scenario.

Here's how it works...


If you're just beginning to venture into the world of sensory deprivation, obscuring your vision is a great place to start because:

A. It's easy to arrange. Just get your hands on a blindfold.

B. If it gets too much, you can simply whip off your blindfold and open your eyes.

While you or your lover are blindfolded, focus on stimulating other senses.

Try putting on your sex playlist. Here are 18 Non-Cringey Songs to Add To Your Sex Playlist if yours could use with some freshening up.

Or, get your partner's sense of touch, smell and taste all involved simultaneously! Light a Lovehoney Oh! Lickable Massage Candle and give your blindfolded-beloved a fragrant massage.


You can alter your or your partner's sense of touch with the help of fetish clothing.

Fetish clothing is made out of a wide variety of materials, like PVC, latex, leather or wet-look fabrics.

Not only will this style of clothing like the Cottelli Wet Look Catsuit deprive you of conventional skin-to-skin touch, it's also a sizzling fashion statement.

The bondage aesthetic is one of sensuality and confidence, so why not peruse Lovehoney's fetish clothing and pick out something in your size?


Temporarily depriving your lover of their hearing can put extra emphasis on the way you touch their body.

Don't get me wrong, communication is key in the bedroom, and dirty talk is the best! (if you want to become a more cunning linguist, read How To Feel Great While You're Talking Dirty).

But sometimes, silence is golden. Having silent sex, or sex where at least one of you in momentarily unable to hear, can help us become more in tune with our bodies and our partners.

There is no need to moan and groan or to put on a show. Instead, you're free to focus entirely on your lover's tantalizing touch.

You can use earplugs, noise cancelling headphones or simply listen to music via earphones to achieve this kind of deprivation.

How Can Sensory Deprivation Improve Sex?

Sensory deprivation can improve your sex life in a variety of ways. One reason many people try sensory deprivation is because they are looking to shake up their routine.

Just by using a blindfold or by donning fetish gear, you can take your usual hanky-panky to a new level! You can't put a price on bringing that sense of excitement back to the bedroom.

For other people, sensory deprivation is a way of deepening trust and intimacy in a sexual relationship.

When you're deprived of your senses, you are in a vulnerable state. Trusting your partner to not only take care of you, but to pleasure you while vulnerable can make for an unforgettable experience.

On the other hand, this is why maintaining consent throughout sensory deprivation play is crucial.

Not being able to see, hear or accurately feel has the potential to cause issues, so establish safe words or safe signals before you dive into a scene.

If you're someone who has always felt drawn to BDSM, but hasn't known where to start, sensory deprivation could represent that first stepping stone to exploring your sexuality.

There is no need to wait until you find the perfect partner, because you can engage in sensory play solo. Read How to Explore BDSM When You're Single to find out more.

Sensory deprivation is a great way to rekindle passion, deepen trust or discover new kinks.

Remember to keep your play safe and respect your partner's boundaries, and soon 'love is blind' will take on a whole new meaning!

Audrey Andrews is a student blogger for Lovehoney. In her spare time she loves to do craft, but would not advise knitting your own condoms.

Download UNISEX Student Lovehoney E-Book

You may also like:

Audrey Andrews

Written by Audrey Andrews.

Originally published on Feb 5, 2019. Updated on Aug 5, 2020