Questions about Fetish Clothing and Fetish Desires

Q. Elise, How important is fetish clothing in a female domination relationship?

A. It is very important for the dominant woman to wear fetish clothing for two reasons. First of all, a man is so visually image oriented, that him just viewing you in fetish clothing will help to bring out his submissive nature. There was some research done on this. It concluded that if a man's submissiveness could be measured on a scale of one to ten, with ten being him in a state of absolute submission, a woman can get the man to six or seven simply by just wearing a fetish outfit. That means that it takes a lot less work in dominating him to get him to a complete state of submission, than it would take if the woman didn't wear a fetish outfit.

The second reason I like to recommend that the woman wear fetish clothing is that it helps her to feel more dominant. I feel sexy and powerful when I put on leather. This helps my more bitchy and aggressive personality to come out. It helps me to get into the right attitude before I start to dominate my submissive.

Q. Elise, I have a question for you upon reading your web site. I'm curious how you would recommend using the roles of dominance and submission without the use of too many props. I'm a very natural, fiery-spirited woman and am not into uncomfortable, restrictive clothes, and I'm not very interested in gadgets and gear. I enjoy the body in its natural, unshaved state, free of illusory accouterments. Sure, I love sexy clothes, I even enjoy a little leather. I love playing with cat o' nines; a little sting is invigorating, awakening to the senses. But PVC, vinyl? Why suffocate my body?

A. I prefer Leather over PVC myself. I think PVC came about as a cheap imitation for leather. A PVC outfit or PVC lingerie is less expensive than leather. It also is less flattering to the female form, unless you have a perfect build. I have not known too many men with a PVC fetish, although some men do like the shiny look of PVC on the female body. Leather is an entirely different story. Not only is it sexy but it has a tremendous psychological effect on the male psyche (which I have discussed previously). The smell, texture, appearance and symbolism of leather cannot be duplicated by PVC.

D&S is more about your attitude than your outfit. A woman who knows who she is and what she is about will command attention and submission from a man, regardless of her attire. Nevertheless, men are visually oriented and the outfits and props can greatly assist a woman as she uses a man's fetish to stir his submissive nature. I must confess that a leather outfit helps to fuel my dominant attitude. The clothes make me feel dominant and thus I tend to act more dominant when wearing a fetish outfit. I don't know if it is so much the clothes but rather the energy I perceive coming from the man when he sees me in the fetish outfit. The props and my attire give me an edge and I use that edge to my advantage during a D&S scene.

It all boils down to your attitude and how your man responds to your dominance. If wearing a fetish outfit makes you feel sexier and more dominant and thus enhances your dominant aura and attitude, why not wear one? If the appearance of you in a fetish outfit causes your man to become overpowered with submission, it would be foolish not to use this weapon against him. But if wearing such an outfit has the opposite effect by making you feel suffocated and thus negatively impacts your attitude, then go with what works for you. Again, your attitude is the key.

As far as props go, a whip is only a prop if you don't use it. But a whip is a tool in the hands of a woman who knows how to use it. If you use your cat 'o nine to administer that sting on your man, then it is not a prop but a valuable tool in the art of D&S. But to answer your premise, of course a woman does not need to use tools, toys or D&S gear. Attitude is the key and a woman can dominate a man with her looks, her aura, her voice, and her sexuality. The tools and the toys are only there to assist.

Q. I recently submitted my story to your site, which you posted in April's entries in your Real Stories section.  In my story, I told you about my friend Lisa who introduced me to the Female Supremacy concept. When I went to LA to visit her, she outlined the basic framework of her beliefs. Some of them differed from yours, although many were the same.  I was hoping you could offer some insights.

The main departure centers around the dress of the dominant woman. Lisa believes that leather and fetish wear are out.  She and her group of Female friends gather every Friday with their men, but they go for the standard look, either the power business suit or the casual but sexy look.

This belief is focused on the idea that men who are dominated by Women in normal clothing will more easily transfer the superiority of their Women to the superiority of all Women.  If all of their domination is at the hands of a leather-clad Woman, then when they see a woman dressed in normal clothing, they may miss the superiority connection. What are your thoughts on this?

A. I have no problem with a FemDom group dominating their men in non-fetish attire, especially if the people involved are veterans to this lifestyle. I agree with Lisa in that the more often a man is dominated by women in business attire or street clothes, the easier he will make the jump in his submission from fantasy to reality.

Having said that, I would not rule out or dismiss the power of fetish clothing. You are forgetting one important aspect to all of this. What is the effect on the submissive male? If a male has a strong leather fetish and if the sight of seeing a woman wearing a leather outfit causes him to become overcome with submission, it would be foolish not to use his fetish against him.

Many years ago, I read an article in a Fetish publication about a research project done by professional dominant women where they measured the level of submission in men. What they did was they gave each client that visited them a scale ranging from 1 to 10, with 1 being a little submissive and 10 being extremely submissive. The men would verbally tell the women what number they felt after she performed various D&S activities on them. What these women found was that they could get a man to go from 1 to 6 or 7 merely by putting on a fetish outfit. The sight of a woman dressed in a sexy leather outfit or a sexy fetish outfit caused these men to become weak. This makes sense from a psychological standpoint because men are so visually oriented. That is why pornography is more popular with men than with women. Men can become extremely aroused (or submissive) by mere sight. So if a woman wants to take her man to subspace so she can more easily have her way with him, she will get him there much faster if she dons a fetish outfit.

Another advantage of the fetish outfit is the effect it can have on the dominant woman. A woman who puts on a fetish outfit is basically putting on power. This is particularly true for beginners in this lifestyle. The nervous and unsure woman who knows little about D&S may begin to feel powerful when she dresses in a sexy, fetish outfit. As she views herself in the mirror, she will see that she radiates power and sexuality and this may give her more confidence. Attitude is the key when dominating a man and a woman who looks powerful will feel powerful and the woman who feels powerful will be powerful. No man can overcome a woman who looks dominant and gives off an aura of dominance. The fetish outfit can assist in these goals.

Once a couple becomes experienced in this lifestyle, the need for fetish outfits are not as necessary. Like I said, attitude is the key so the woman who is secure in her dominance will learn how to take her man to subspace by getting inside of his head and stimulating his submissive triggers by using her voice or utilizing other more subtle methods. The experienced dominant woman develops an aura and her need to wear fetish outfits will become less. The experienced dominant woman wears fetish outfits for the purpose to exploit the fetish in her man or to merely dress up to add some fun and spice to the session. 

I agree with your friend Lisa about getting men accustomed to submitting to women in business attire and street clothes. I admire her philosophy and I think we have the same goals. My only word of caution to her would be not to rule out a powerful weapon that is in her arsenal. If a man has a certain fetish, never rule out utilizing it for your advantage. Each woman needs to learn what triggers will stir a man's submission and each woman needs to utilize those triggers to her benefit.

Q. Mistress Elise, I've noticed that more female news reporters and other hosts are wearing leather. Do you think they are trying to portray a dominant image to their audience?

A. Leather on a woman does convey a confident, take charge, sexual imagery that I am sure is not lost on the producers of television news programs. The competition is fierce so any possible edge will be exploited. The female hosts of these news and entertainment programs are definitely trying to convey to the audience that they are intelligent and in charge.

Don't forget, a lot of producers of these programs are men and men know better than anyone how their gender is rendered helpless by a leather wearing, confident female. They study these things out to the last detail, leaving very little to chance. Men know that women are superior and they know that men will be drawn to the attractive female anchor that is intelligent and dominant. Your observation is dead on.

Q. Elise, my husband's submissive desires revolve around him wanting me to use him as a piece of furniture. He likes to be my footstool, or my chair, or my rug, or even my clothes rack. He shows me pictures off the Internet where women use men as inanimate objects and he asks me to do this to him. I try to incorporate this activity within our play sessions and even some within our everyday life. In the beginning, I enjoyed doing this to him as it gave me a powerful feeling of control over him and thus satisfied a part of my dominant nature. However, over time this activity has lost most of the thrill for me and I really don't get anything out of treating him like an object. Yet, I can tell this activity takes him to subspace and thus it makes him more eager to submit to me when we go back to our normal everyday roles and responsibilities.

Perhaps if I understood more about why he desires to be a piece of human furniture I would be willing to do this more often to him. I've asked him to explain to me what he gets out of it and why it takes him to subspace but thus far, he has been unable to put what he feels into adequate words. I was hoping you could address this topic in your forum.

A. Treating a man like an inanimate object has never been one of my favorite D&S activities, although I have explored this fantasy and desire with a number of my clients over the years. You are correct in that for the woman, she gets very little physical pleasure out of this activity (unless she uses a man's face for a seat cushion in which there could be some obvious benefits and pleasure for the woman). Sitting on the back of a man or putting your feet on the back of a man as a foot rest for long periods of time is not very comfortable, yet alone arousing for a woman. The male body is lumpy and bony and was not designed for comfort. That is why we buy padded and cushiony furniture.

Likewise, making a man into a coffee table to balance objects on his back or to hang fetish outfits from him as if he is a clothes rack, does little for the woman other than the mental satisfaction that she yields that much control over her man. However, this activity does do wonders in fulfilling submissive desires within some men. Therefore, you need to focus on how doing this to him on occasion will yield great long term benefits to you, namely his obedience and willingness to obey you in your everyday interactions with him. Plus, this activity is a great way to dominate a man when you are not in the mood or do not have the energy to have a D&S session with him. Just order him to be your clothes rack and make him stand in the corner all night with your leather clothing hanging from him, while you relax and read or watch television. In doing this, you are dominating his psyche and it is not taking any effort on your part.

To understand why some men enjoy this activity one must look at it from the submissive male's psyche. You hit on an important aspect of this desire when you mentioned how your husband shows you pictures of how dominant women use men as inanimate objects. To a submissive male, the visual image of seeing a woman using a man as a piece of furniture is a powerful image. It sends the symbolic image that women don't need men and that to a dominant woman, a man is no more important than an inanimate piece of furniture. Such an image causes the submissive desires within a man to stir and he becomes excited by the thought of a woman treating him with such little regard. To the submissive male, this image makes the statement that Women are so far superior to men, that a man is only worthy to be used by a woman in such a humiliating and degrading manner. It elevates the woman to Royalty and even to Goddess status in the mind of the submissive male. How can he ever be the equal of a woman who treats him this way? This causes him to feel humble and subservient and that is why he is eager to serve you once he returns to his normal life. The psychological effect stays with him for a period of time after this scene has been played out.

There are also some bondage elements to this activity. A man that enjoys being helpless and the feeling of being in bondage, may enjoy being an inanimate object. Especially a clothes rack or a similar object where fetish clothing is placed over him. This may cause a man to be transferred to subspace much the same way restrictive bondage does to some men. Regardless of why a man enjoys this activity, a smart woman learns how to use this fetish or desire within her man for her benefit.

So the next time you decide to make your husband into your footstool or clothes rack, consider what is going through his mind. Consider how this activity is causing him to view you as far superior to him and how it is elevating you to Goddess status in his mind. This should make you excited and even aroused and thus help you to enjoy some aspects of this type of D&S play. Then capitalize on his subservient frame of mind and have him serve you in a manner that you enjoy once he is back to being your human husband. Like any D&S activity, keep these things in proper balance. A man that desires to be your inanimate object 24/7 is out of balance and needs to become rooted in realty. However, it is perfectly Ok to explore this desire within him from the safe and intimate relationship of your marriage and then build upon it for your own benefit and advantage. That way you both end up winning and being satisfied.

Q. I have a question--my slave husband has asked me several times if I would stand on his face in my bare feet and talk on the phone to one of my girlfriends, ignoring him. Or else, sometimes as part of the evening, he bathes me, and has asked if I would use him as a bath mat when I get out of the tub, and stand on his penis and face while I towel off.

I'm scared I'm going to hurt him (especially standing on his face). So I never have. He doesn't push it, but I think it's important to him. What do you think? Why is it he needs this? I have to confess, when I think about doing it, it does excite me somewhat.

A. You are wise to be cautious about the trampling. You need to know the male anatomy and skeleton structure to understand where you can and cannot apply your full weight. The laws of physics do apply here so your weight and size and his build play a factor as well.

The bones in the face are fragile and can be crushed easily so never place your full weight on his face. You could sit and press your feet to his face with a little force from your legs as you talk to your girlfriend on the phone. Or you could stand with one foot firmly planted on the ground with your other foot pressed to his chest or crotch but never stand on his face, chest, stomach or crotch with your full weight. Be extra careful about his stomach area, as this is where most organs are located.

If he wants to be your bath mat, have him rollover on his back and stand on his upper legs, ass, and back. Stay away from his lower legs and the crest where his knees are. Unless he is very small or you are very large, you should be able to stand on his backside. But just stand, do not jump up and down on him.

To be extra safe, only trample him in your bare feet. Some men are real masochists and like to be trampled with high heel shoes or stiletto boots. If your husband desires this, I would suggest that you only apply light pressure as you sit or stand with your other leg planted next to him. Then you can experiment with degrees of pressure from your shoes or boots and gage his reaction and pain threshold.

Why do men desire to be trampled or used as a door mat or bath mat? It has to do with desiring that feeling of helplessness. There is a form of bondage in being used as a footstool or a bath mat. Read my response about the human furniture for more insight into this fetish.

There is also mental stimulation as to what this activity represents. It represents to the submissive man that he is indeed under his wife's feet. She is the conqueror and he is the conquered. It goes back to ancient times when on the battle field the victor would place his foot upon the head of the vanquished as he decided if he would kill his enemy or allow him to exist as his slave. To your husband, you have conquered him and he is now your slave. The act of being trampled by you reinforces that to him and mentally transports him to subspace. He wants to just lay there under your feet and bask in his weakness as you flaunt your superiority over him.

This image also appeals to your dominant nature and that is why the thought excites you. You like seeing your husband helpless under your power and your will. You want to feel his flesh under your feet as you chat with your girlfriend or as you dry yourself after your slave has just bathed you. The sociological statement this makes to you as a female is profound and satisfying. Experiment with this activity and enjoy it but just make sure that you balance it with safe play.

Q. In all my submissive fantasies, all my Fem Dom's either are smoking or have cigarettes. What does that mean? It seems do be a common theme on Humiliatrix, which is the web site I use.

A. It is surprising how many men have a fetish for women who smoke. Being a lifelong non-smoker, this is one fetish I have never engaged in with submissive men. Still, I have had a number of men confess to me their desire to be dominated by a woman who smokes. One client of mine wanted to be hog-tied by a woman and then he wanted her to light up as she teased him about his helpless condition. Another client wanted to be lectured and verbally humiliated by a sophisticated woman as she smoked a cigar. Since I do not smoke, I was unable to explore these men's fantasies but I was able to refer them to a woman who could.

Why do men have this fetish? I believe that a woman who smokes is conveying a dominant image and thus this fetish is just another example of man's desire to be in submission to a powerful woman. To the submissive male's psyche, women who smoke give off an image of self-confidence and sophistication as the woman who smokes handles her smoking with competence and style. Women who smoke are perceived as being "naughty", as they deliberately do something that is sometimes viewed as socially unacceptable and wrong. To the submissive male, women who smoke portray an image that they are relaxed, carefree, and in charge. Many guys see smoking as a reflection of the female attitude of "I do what I like." This female attitude is a dominant and independent attitude that men find to be sexy. Women who smoke give off an image that they are confident of their sexuality; they may even use their smoking as a "tool" or "prop" to attract attention.

There has always been a sexual mystique surrounding women who smoke as everything from the black and white films of the 30s and 40s to the Virginia Slims ads of the 60's reflects a sexual component to smoking. Add to this the dominant persona that smoking seems to convey and the submissive male becomes aroused at the imagery of a woman who smokes. To a submissive male, a woman who smokes is invading a man's turf as smoking in our society once conveyed success and conquest. This symbolism is still true today as it relates to the cigar. The cigar box is passed around as men celebrate their business successes and world conquests. A woman who smokes a cigar is sending off a subliminal message to the male gender that she has invaded a man's territory and now she is celebrating her conquest of the male gender. Of course, all of this imagery and symbolism primarily exists within the mind of the male and that is why it has become a male fetish.

If your wife or girlfriend chooses to smoke then you can certainly explore this fetish with her as she will be able to use your fetish to stir your submissive nature and thus she can use her smoking habit to dominate you. To her, lighting a cigarette or a cigar will be as powerful as the donning of a leather outfit would be to the women who's submissive has a leather fetish. Once a woman knows that her man has this fetish, each time she lights up and gives that confident and dominant facial expression, it will be an exercise in female domination. Again, this fetish can be used if the woman enjoys smoking and if she has no intentions of quitting.

Having said that, the submissive male must never forget that habitual smoking is an unhealthy lifestyle and thus he should never encourage his wife or girlfriend to smoke just so he can satisfy his fetish desires. That would be a selfish act and thus it would not be an act of submission. The submissive male should care for his Queen and desire for her to live a long and healthy life. If the woman wants to smoke, that it one thing, but if she doesn't smoke or is trying to quit, than the submissive male needs to put her needs above his.

A compromise might be for the dominant woman to use a cigar or a cigarette holder as a prop, without lighting up. That way she can explore the smoking fetish with her submissive without jeopardizing her health. As with all forms of fetish exploration, common sense is needed, as the fantasy must be separated from the reality.

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