'Never underestimate hot wax on the nipples.' A sex expert's guide to temperature play.

Want to add some extra pleasurable sensations to your sex life? Of course you do. 

Temperature play is the perfect way to heat things up - or cool them down - and it couldn’t be easier to get started with. 

While the term might sound a little hardcore, temperature play simply means to switch up the sensations of foreplay or masturbation by experimenting with hot and cold temperatures. This could include using ice, wax play, chilling or heating up your glass or metal sex toys before use. 

As someone who has been working in the sex toy industry for several years, temperature play is one of my favourite ways to keep foreplay interesting. So, if you’re looking for new ways of mixing things up in the bedroom, either on your own or with a partner, temperature play is a simple and inexpensive way of doing so.

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But before you start changing the temperature dial, here's everything you need to know about temperature play during sex. 

What is temperature play and why do people enjoy it?

Temperature play refers to using varying levels of temperature to add extra sensation to stimulate the body. I know this sounds rather broad, but that’s because temperature play can involve lots of different objects and toys! While it’s often associated with BDSM, temperature play can also be enjoyed by those who are less experienced in this field.


You can enjoy temperature play during foreplay with a partner, or for solo fun. The reason people love it so much is because introducing something hot or cold can ‘shock’ the senses, increasing your sensitivity and making your nerve endings more susceptible to touch.

You know that feeling when you step outside on a cold day and feel a slight shiver down your back? Temperature play helps you focus that intense sensation in one area, which can feel amazing!


How to get started with temperature play

Introducing temperature into your sex life could be as easy as using an ice cube to tease your partner or could involve a sex toy. Let’s look at some of the most common ways you can enjoy temperature in the bedroom. 

Ice cubes

Ice ice baby! One of my favourite ways to switch up the sensations is to use an ice cube. You can use an ice cube to rub on your nipples, down your thighs, or really any erogenous zones. Pop an ice cube in your mouth a few minutes before giving oral sex to drive them wild.

If you’re like me and find the summer heat a little unbearable at times, ice can be a great way to cool you down AND enjoy some additional pleasure. Win-win!

Warm up or cool down your lube

Grab your favourite lube and hold the bottle under warm water for 10 minutes or leave it in the fridge for an hour before use. This is another easy way to enjoy temperature play. 


Make sure your temperatures aren’t too extreme though – you don’t want to melt the lube bottle or freeze it so much that you can’t squeeze it out! Trust me, I’m speaking from experience…

Wax play and massage candles

A popular form of temperature play is wax play. Hot wax might sound terrifying at first, and there definitely can be an element of pleasurable pain in wax play, however you can also use massage candles to enjoy this sensation safely. 

Massage candles are designed with a low burning point, meaning that they don’t get too hot, and they burn as an oil instead of a wax. You simply light the candle, leave it to burn for 10-15 minutes, and then pour it over your skin. The oil will leave your skin feeling soft and is perfect for a sensual massage!

One of my personal favourites is the Share Satisfaction Massage Candle Set. It comes with three scented candles in rose, pheromone, and vanilla, as well as a candle wick trimmer. The best thing about these candles is that they have a spout, making it a lot easier to pour the oil exactly where you want it! As a bonus, they smell AMAZING.

If you do want to take things to the next level, you can also purchase candles that are specifically used for wax play. Warning, these burn a lot hotter than massage candles! But they are great for people who want to delve into BDSM.

Use sex toys made from glass or metal

Have you ever tried a glass sex toy? If you don’t have one of these stunning staples in your collection yet, I highly recommend investing in one. Glass toys, such as dildos and butt plugs made from borosilicate glass, provide a very pleasurable experience when used anally or vaginally, with their firmness and smooth material. Plus, they are designed to last a lifetime when looked after properly, making them an environmentally friendly option.


Glass toys are perfect for temperature play because glass can sustain extreme temperatures, and heating them up or cooling them down won't ruin the toy like it would with other materials. Metal sex toys are also perfect for temperature play for similar reasons. 

Whether you’ve got a glass dildo or a butt plug, there are a few ways you can enjoy temperature play with your glass or metal sex toys, which include:  

Pop it in the fridge or freezer

Grab your glass or metal toy and pop it in the fridge or freezer to make things icy cold! I recommend putting it into a ziplock bag before putting it in the fridge. This will keep it clean and, if it’s going in the freezer, it will be easier for you to grab out once you’re ready to play.

Run it under hot water

Hold your toy under the hot tap for a few minutes until you’re happy with the temperature. You can also boil a jug and leave the toy in a glass of hot water on your bedside table. The toy may lose its heat relatively quickly, so if you want to take your time with it the second option may be more convenient. 

Tips for enjoying safe temperature play

Of course, you need to ensure you play safely when it comes to temperature play. Since there might be extreme temperatures involved in your most sensitive areas, it’s important to take the necessary steps to prevent any pain or injury. Safe sex is good sex!


Have a safe word

If you’re playing with a partner, the first thing to establish is a safe word. This is important for when you’re engaging in a new sexual activity with a partner, particularly when it involves elements of BDSM like temperature play. A safe word is a word that either of you can say at any point to stop what you are doing if you feel uncomfortable or something is painful.

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Check the temperature first

You may be excited to get straight into things – but ALWAYS check the temperature on the back of your hand or arm before bring anything close to your sensitive bits. If the temperature is too hot or too cold, it could be very uncomfortable or even painful. Always use lubricant with your glass or metal sex toys.   

Set up your surroundings

If you’re playing with a candle, common fire safety rules apply meaning you should ensure there isn’t anything flammable around that could catch fire. It’s easy to get caught up in the heat of the moment, so make your space a safe place before you play. 

If you’re using ice, or something that could get a bit messy, have a towel on hand for easy clean up. And if you are playing with more extreme temperatures, like wax play, it’s a good idea to have a bucket of cold water on hand just in case!

So, what are you waiting for? Grab some ice cubes, light a candle, heat up your new glass toy… it’s time to experiment with temperature play!


This article is by Georgia May, adult toy expert and reviewer at Adulttoymegastore. She’s always on top of the latest trends in the adult toy industry and is an early adopter for what’s new and trending. View Georgia’s articles  here.

Feature Image: Mamamia. 

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