BDSM Collars - Learn About This Important Kink Accessory

Leather collar that says Owned

 

The concept of collars is common enough as an accessory (ask any fashionista, trend enthusiast, or goth girl/boy). You probably also imagine puppies on leashes.

 

Then there are BDSM collars.

 

And you’re probably picturing someone in a spiked, leather collar being dragged around by a stern Mistress or Master.

 

But what if I told you that the collar can be as serious as an engagement or wedding ring? And what if I told you that you’ve probably seen one and didn’t even realize it. Let’s say as a watch or a toe ring?

 

Read on to find out more…

 

 

WHAT'S OUT THERE?


 

Materials and designs vary greatly.

 

They can be anything ... leather, metal, chain, ribbon, plastic, foam covered in fake leather, lace … the list goes on. It also get’s more varied when you get into subtle/day collars.

 

 

WHAT ARE THEY USED FOR?


 

IMPROVING POSTURE – Meant to enhance a submissive’s posture or stance by keeping their chin up.

 

KINK PLAY – Used for role play, puppy/kitten play (complete with pet name tags), BDSM fashion accessories etc.

 

SHOWING POSSESSION – In some circles, a collar shows that a Dom is in (consensual) “ownership” of their slave/sub and different interaction etiquette is required if you wish to interact with them. (more on that later)

 

DISCREET/DAY WEAR – Some people opt for other forms of socially acceptable jewelry to represent their at-home collar.

 

 

WHAT STYLES ARE THERE?


 

Various BDSM collars and styles

 

DOG COLLARS – The most common type you’ll see. Often made from leather, sometimes with metal hardware (spikes, studs, loops etc) but there are also the nylon ones you can literally buy from a pet store. They can be thin and delicate with rhinestones and ruffles or large and intimidating … and everything in between.

 

TOY HYBRIDS – You’ll see the occasional collar that doubles as either a ball gag, O-ring gag, or medium for attaching other kink gear like floggers, cuffs, nose hooks, or other restraints like T

 

ETERNITY COLLARS – They’re called “eternity” because, when fixed together, there’s no obvious clasp or attachment – they look like a solid steel ring around your neck. Quite lovely and passable for day wear.

 

“COLLAR” COLLARS – Instead of a loop, the neck piece looks like you cut the collar of a shirt and attached a ring and leash. Tres chic.

 

JEWELRY – These are a bit harder to classify because they are a diverse as any regular necklace. However, I wouldn’t classify them as normal necklaces (which would be “day wear”) rather a necklace with heavy BDSM or kink influences.

 

 

THE SIGNIFICANCE OF COLLARS IN BDSM


 

The world of kink is diverse, so it shouldn’t be a surprise that there are many different interpretations of what a collar “should be”. Someone might see it as a simple accessory to enhance their play, while others see it as far more serious.

 

The last idea is the most complicated, so let’s take a closer look…

 

In a serious Dom/sub relationship, collars are used to show different levels of their ownership, training, and dedication.

 

BDSM collar with heart ring

 

1. PROTECTION COLLAR – Usually reserved for when a Dom and sub go out to a kink event – like a dungeon, sex party, whatever. It’s a signal that the sub isn’t “owned” but still under the care and protection of their Dom.

 

ADDITION – This isn’t really a “genre” necessarily, but I read about one slave that has a collar she wears because the Dom enjoyed choking but didn’t want to cause harm to his sub. So, he had her wear a thick, metal collar that will withstand any amount of pressure while keeping her neck safe. This would technically be a different kind of protection collar.

 

2. CONSIDERATION COLLAR – It’s the next level of the D/s dynamic. It represents the sub taking their first step into consideration for a serious or long-term contract/relationship. Think of it as “testing out the water.”

 

3. TRAINING COLLAR – This means the sub has begun their formal training with their Dom. This might not be a “top level” collar but it’s a level that should still be taken seriously.

 

Both parties take this time to demonstrate their dedication to the pairing. Some might take this to be like an engagement ring, while others do not (it’s a personal choice).

 

4. FORMAL COLLAR – This is the BDSM equivalent of a wedding ring. These can take years to earn – for the slave to show their dedication, growth, and successful training and the Dom to show their worth and healthy SSSC behaviors.

 

It’s a commitment to a long-term relationship and often comes with a “collaring ceremony” – like a wedding party and reception. This final collar can be anything from traditional leather to a wristwatch.

 

 

COLLAR ETIQUETTE


 

If you’re new to the kink scene and plan on interacting with Doms and subs, know that it’s a rule that you never interact with an owned sub without their Dom’s permission. It can be hard to spot sometimes.

Yellow BDSM collar with many ring loops

In general, if you’re not sure, Dom’s usually stick close to their subs while at a party. The power dynamic will also be pretty easy to spot.

 

“Hi there. Mind if I join you guys?” or “Hi. I’d like to hang out here and chat with you guys. Is that okay?” (or whatever variant you want)

 

If, for some reason, someone is on their own you can ask, “Are you with a Dom tonight. May I talk to you?”

 

I’ve heard some clubs insist on “making eye contact first”. But. in a large party, it’s hard not to meet someone’s eye – you have to make the eye contact obvious. After, if they ignore you, it shows they’re not interested – don’t take it personally, there are a million reasons people say no, and not all of them about you.

 

However, if they seem open to being approached, politely join them and engage in some chit-chat (don’t just come out and ask to have sex with one of them – even in BDSM parties it’s too forward).

 

 

EXPLAIN THIS DAY WEAR ALREADY


 

Day wear BDSM collar, chain necklaceNot everyone can be "out and proud" about their kink – for fear of retribution, being fired, physical harm from non-kinksters, and (at minimum) high levels of judgment and negativity.

 

Because of this, those who participate in a serious D/s pairing (and the sub is required to wear a collar “at all times”) understand the need for anonymity and safety in their sub’s daily life and will opt for something more symbolic than literal.

 

This can be a regular bracelet, simple necklace, anklet, wristwatch, cuff links, toe ring, body piercing, hidden tattoo, etc.

 

 

HOW TO FIT A COLLAR


 

First, forget this “one size fits all”.

 

There’s also debate around the “stick two fingers between the neck and the collar”.

 

Lace BDSM collar

A simple, soft, and elegant lace choker.

 

First, the “finger” thing is only if you want your collar to fit “snug” (collars should never be tight!) Second, how loose things fit is totally up to you – it can be a dangling necklace if you want.

 

However, if you do choose to go for something on the snug side, custom-made, or non-adjustable (like an eternity ring), make sure you use a soft measuring tape to get the circumference of your neck. And add a centimeter or two. 

 

Newbies should try the velcro options to start with.

 

 

KEEP YOUR COLLAR CLEAN!


 

It goes without saying but remember to take good care of your collar – especially if you’ve spent a lot of money on it. Leather, in particular, is a bit tricky. And make sure you get on all those nooks and crannies.

 

 

Learn more about leather care here…

20+ Tips on How to Clean Leather - Keep Your BDSM Gear Shinning

 

 

ALLERGY ALERT


 

Some cheap collars use cheap metals – often nickel. If you think you have a nickel allergy, go from something in the stainless steel, 24k gold, platinum, or titanium department.

 

Avoid “gold plated” because the finish will eventually wear away and you won’t know what the underlying materials are. AND, don’t get “white gold” – it’s gold with lots of nickel added.

 

NOTE: If you’re not sure, go to your doctor, they can do an allergy test.

 

 

“I HATE THE IDEA OF OWNERSHIP”


 

It’s understandable how those on the outside might end up with their backs raised when they hear the word “slave”. With the treatment of women throughout history as well as certain races, nationalities, or even religions, the concept of slavery and punishment are dark, unpleasant topics.

 

However…

 

The concept of “slavery” in BDSM is not in the same wheelhouse as historical or current atrocities. Not even close.

 

Furry collar, black fur collar

It doesn't have to be hardcore - it can light, fun, and playful

 

BDSM and kinksters should always abide by the SSSC rule Safe, Sane, Sober, Consensual. It’s also important to point out that much of the media depicts women as the submissive. What you might not realize is there are a great number of men who enjoy being submissive as well (whether to male or female owners). Aka. men like to wear collars too.

 

Then there’s the Dom.

 

Everyone tends to forget that the Dom is also under the relationship microscope. If a slave feels that a Dom’s behavior isn’t healthy, lacks respect, or doesn’t “fit” on a fundamental level, then he/she is within their rights to leave. They haven’t earned the right to put that collar on their partner.

 

Period.

 

No Dom is allowed to “keep” their sub, if that sub really doesn’t want to be with them anymore (even with these “life contracts” that are solely symbolic and not legal). If they try to make them stay through physical, mental, or emotions means, it’s no longer BDSM and that person is an abuser – a rotten apple that thinks they’re kinky and uses kink as an excuse for their behavior, but really ... they're just a piece of garbage.

 

The final thing to keep in mind. If you don't like it, you don't have to practice it. Everyone is free to embrace or avoid any kink they wish.

 

 

SAFETY WITH COLLARS


 

  • They should never be “tight” or interfere with breathing, circulation, or swallowing.

 

  • Watch out for allergies.

 

  • Watch out for sharp edges with metal or leather.

 

  • If you’re not sure, try Velcro attachments first.

 

  • Always have a couple extra sets of keys (if it locks).

 

  • If you and your sub are going to be separated for any reason, make sure they have an emergency key (just in case).

 

  • Have a safety word.

 

  • If you attach a leash, never pull on it hard or sharply.

 

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

 

We’ve learned that collars can be so many things – and they all mean different things to different people.

 

How about you, my dear readers? What kind of collar would you wear?

 

Also, if you liked this article, and want more BDSM basics, check out these...

 

 

Have a kinky day!

Robyn

TagsBDSM Collars

Comments (0)

Leave a Reply

Required fields are marked *

Post Comment