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When you think of pet names, you might think of cute nicknames that you call your significant other or even close friends. When used correctly, pet names can be endearing. But pet names can also have a use for those who engage in BDSM. I’m going to show you why BDSM names are important and how to create your own. Also, if you want you can skip straight to the first list of BDSM names.
The Purpose of BDSM Names
If you’ve already read our guide to BDSM, you know some people take on dominant and submissive roles or the similar roles of top and bottom. In fact, some people engage in 24/7 power exchange relationships where they never leave those roles. Whether you’re interested in keeping BDSM inside the bedroom or want to explore it as a lifestyle, you might find yourself considering what your dominant name might be or helping choose a submissive name for your partner.
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They put you in the right headspace – The purpose of a dom name or sub name varies between the people who adopt them. For example, some people use them during scenes. This helps to reinforce the roles that you play and to get into the right headspace. It’s like turning down the lights or putting on lingerie, both of which can help you get ready for sex. You might even use special pet names inside of the bedroom, even if you’re not into BDSM.
Reinforce your roles – Although some people only use BDSM names within the scene, others continue to use their dominant and submissive names when addressing their partners outside of the scene. If you have a pet name that you use with your partner–whether you use it all the time or when you’re feeling particularly affectionate–then you’re already familiar with this concept. Again, these nicknames reinforce the dominant and submissive roles each person has agreed to take on and serve as a reminder of the connection shared. In some cases, only the dominant person may address their partner using their special submissive name.
Naming ceremony? – You could choose to have a special naming ceremony, either between you and your partner or in an appropriate venue. Taking on a slave name becomes symbolic of your relationship. Some folks in the BDSM scene have similar collaring ceremonies, which show their commitment to their partner and relationship via the exchange of a collar or other piece of jewelry. But it doesn’t have to be a formal affair if you don’t want it to be.
Psst, it’s not all fun and games. These BDSM rules keep things safe!
However, BDSM names aren’t always personal or private. Many people use nicknames when engaging in public play or socialization to protect their identities. For instance, you might use a dominant name when attending play parties or visiting your local dungeon. Sometimes BDSM names include labels such as “Lady” or “Master,” indicating whether you’re dominant or submissive to potential play partners and people who don’t know you well.
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Big “D” and little “s” – You’ll also notice that nicknames like these are common in online kinky spaces, where they may serve as screen names as well as scene names. Again, titles can indicate whether someone is dominant or submissive. There are also online naming conventions: dominant tend to capitalize their names and pronouns, while submissive often keep their names and pronouns in lowercase.
Now that you understand why, when, and how someone might use BDSM names, you might be wondering what to choose for your own. If you enjoy BDSM in the media or spend time in kinky spaces, you might have noticed some trends and more common nicknames, but there’s plenty of room for creative or unusual names, too!
Keep reading for help determining your Dominant or submissive nickname.
If you’re a dominant, an appropriate name will make you feel powerful and in charge. You won’t feel uncomfortable, or like you’re playing dress-up. But you’ll be ready to control a bondage scene (discover more about bondage) and your partner with skill. It’s not uncommon for dominants to combine some of the titles below with their actual names. Think “Lady Sarah.”
Female Dominant Names
Below are some common dominant female names and titles that you can use in your relationship or scenes:
You’ve probably heard of several of these suggestions for dominant female names.
Mistress is common and the feminized form of Master. But not everyone enjoys it because of its connection to human slavery. For them, a name such as Khaleesi, which originates in fantasy books/TV show Game of Thrones, might be a better option. This idea opens the doors to all sorts of names that your favorite media might inspire.
Names such as Goddess or Queen can be great choices because they create a sense of power and worship. Adding a descriptor such as “glorious” or “benevolent” can customize the name, too.
While less common, Domina is still quite elegant, and Princess can indicate a lack of power, making it for an extraordinary power trip when you force your submissive to use it when speaking to you.
Don’t forget to check out our BDSM checklist as you explore the lifestyle.
Male Dominant Names
Many of the dominant names to call your guy are simply the masculine form of the names suggested for women above.
Again, many of these honorifics denote power. A fairly common name that makes this list, Daddy, is ideal for dominants who display fatherly tendencies such as nurturing, guiding, correctly, and caring about their submissives. It also works well if you’re in a DD/lg relationship.
Related: Do You Like Calling Him Daddy In Bed? You’re Not Alone!
Of course, not everyone is comfortable with the ideas that using titles like Daddy or Mommy suggests. It’s a personal decision!
Gender Neutral Dominant Names
If you thought the list of dominant names to call your husband was a bit short or missing a few notable exceptions, then they might be among the list of dominant names below:
- Your Highness
- Your Exaltedness
- Your Excellency
- First initial — i.e. J for Jason or Jennifer
Now, you might notice that some of these ideas seem masculine. However, some people don’t feel that a dominant name necessarily has to indicate gender. The person in charge of the scene remains in control whether they’re a man, woman, or nonbinary! And if someone plays with multiple dominant partners, it might be easier to use the same honorific for everyone; although, some people may prefer to use specific names for each partner.
Side note: As a dominant, you may want to say some of these dominant phrases to your sub to keep them in line.
Submissive names play the counterpart to the dominant name ideas above, often indicating the specific roles played by the members of the couple (eg, Daddy and little girl). They help someone feel subservient and cared for and can make getting into the scene or subspace (learn more about subspace here) easier.
When used correctly and by the right person, a submissive’s name can pretty much cause instant arousal–especially when preceded by “My” (“My slut” etc)! We recommend using a name that aligns with the type of submissive you are dealing with.
Related: Some people feel cared for through a praise kink.
Now onto the names!
Female Submissive Names
- Little girl
- Baby girl
- Good girl
Here, you see how Princess can take on a more youthful and subservient role than when used for a dominant woman. Damsel goes even further by suggesting that the female submissive needs saving.
Male Sub Names
- Baby boy
You’ll notice how submissive male names such as Baby Boy or Boi emphasize youthfulness or the need to be taken care of. Stud can both be complementary and work well for pony play. In contrast, Sissy is more of a humiliating name if that’s your type of play, instead.
Gender Neutral Submissive Names
Not everyone loves a gendered submissive name. For them, one of the following might be a better fit. Fortunately, the list of gender-neutral names for a submissive is quite extensive!
- Pain Slut
- Toy (Sex toy, fuck toy)
- Little one
Names for submissives often suggest youth or other lack of power. These names can be sweet and loving but are sometimes more insulting or humiliating. Not everyone is okay with that. The same goes with descriptors such as “sweet” or “good” versus “bratty” and “filthy,” which can make the name feel more personal. If you prefer the sweet and affectionate names, you might also prefer sensual domination to hardcore kink.
On the other hand, if you’re into sexual humiliation, you might pick a name such as Flower or Doll for your male submissive because it’s feminine or associated with femininity. And you can always combine a sweet descriptor with a deprecating name or the other way around to keep things interesting. Think Slave Princess or Darling Slut, for example. Another way to soften “demeaning” submissive nicknames for males and females is by adding “My” to the front, which can change the meaning to one that’s more sweet or affectionate–and enjoyable!
Of course, there are plenty of other names that refer to the power-exchange aspect of a relationship and the roles that are played, including Kitten, which works well both for pet play and general BDSM scenes. Precious or Treasure pay homage to the intimate relationship that a dominant and submissive have, while a sassy submissive might best fit the name Brat.
Learn: What a brat is and how to be bratty as a submissive.
These 6 BDSM games will give you ideas for your scenes.
And if you want to customize any of these submissive names for males or females, simply adding your partner’s name or nickname can do the trick. Matt can become your “Darling Matty” when he’s submitting to you, or you might go by “[Your name] Bear” in the bedroom.
A Few Final Thoughts on Master and Slave Names
As you can see, the best nicknames for dominants and submissives are entirely subjective. So…
Make it personal – What sounds and feels good to you? What makes you feel connected to your partner? Is there a particular submissive male name that describes your partner’s personality? What about your personality as a dominant or submissive?
A traditional or unique name? – Don’t think you need to use a cliche or traditional name. What might be a good slave name for one person might feel cheesy or mean to someone else.
More than one BDSM name is fine – Finally, you don’t necessarily have to pick just one dominant name to call your guy! The setting might dictate another name. Perhaps you use a fairly common nickname such as “Darling” when around non-kinky (vanilla) people. You can get away with “Yes, Sir” as a male dominant name in most settings without others realizing that it has a BDSM connection.
On the other hand, your partner can call you by a dirtier female submissive name if you’re in the company of other kinksters or alone. Or you use a submissive pet name that no one else knows during a particularly intimate encounter or when trying to get your partner to submit even further but stick to a less personal submissive nickname if others are around.
Similarly, different roles might call for different names. For example, you might sometimes play a Daddy/little girl scene and use the appropriate female submissive name and male dominant name, even if those aren’t the submissive and dominant pet names you typically use. Your master might use a different name as a punishment. More BDSM punishment ideas here.
Here’s another consideration–some people are switches. This means that they feel comfortable as both the dominant and submissive. If this is your partner, he might have a male sub name that differs from the dominant pet name you use for him.
You don’t really need to have rhyme or reason for having multiple submissive pet names or dominant nicknames unless specific names have been outlined in your BDSM contract. Sometimes these things just naturally slip out.
Read More: Consensual Bondage – The Ultimate Guide to BDSM Contracts
In fact, you don’t necessarily need to consider submissive names for males if your partner simply prefers that you use his name! Your given names can just as easily denote dominating or submission when you use the right tone of voice, which is good if you’re afraid of slipping up and using your scene nickname in front of vanilla people.
Picking the right pet name as a dominant or submissive can be great for getting you into the right mindset for BDSM roles–or enforcing roles within your relationship. Many of these names are so sweet and sexy that they’re regularly used during vanilla sex, too. Enjoy finding out what works for you and your partner, even if you decide not to use any special names or titles.
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Amy Lee says
What about names to call a sub that is a BIG fan of degrading and praise? I’m trying to think of some new things to call them, and it has to be gender nuetral?
In my Mistress’s house, She calls this slave whatever comes into Her mind: cock, tongue, worm, vermin … the list is endless. Sometimes, it’s a clue to how She expects my response to be: “worm” signals crawling on my belly, or “tongue” means She wants me licking Her; “clit-boy” has an obvious command, which is a delight to obey. Sometimes, there is no name — a slave is too insignificant for that recognition — and She summons me with a snap of Her fingers or a slap of the riding-crop against Her boot; that often means a punishment is waiting, but She delights in keeping me off balance.
Similarly, this slave makes an effort to exalt Mistress by addressing Her as “Most Gracious Princess” or something similar. If She feels more like a Queen that a Princess, however, Her whip will let me know in just a few seconds. Another interesting communication gimmick that works in out married arrangement is that when this slave wails “Please, Mistress, not the tawse, Mistress; mercy, Mistress, please,” She goes right ahead, knowing that Her slave can take it. But if She hears Her real name, still in the respectful tone of a slave pleading to the powerful dominant, She moderates the punishment: one or two whacks and then on to something else. That way, we don’t have the sudden stop and loss of the mood that the usual safeword protocol demands. In reply, then, a gentle “Thank You, Mistress” assures us both that everything is all right., and the game continues.
To You, Mistress Amy Lee, this unworthy groveling wretch begs to place a cyber-kiss on the toe of Your precious boot is submission and gratitude for the privilege of offering a few thoughts on You welcome website.
Dom Stavole says
Thank you so much for the tips. Things are going much better in my dominant role of my relationship. My little governor is doing so well.
Someone who knows says
Just so you know Kajira is the female submissive in Gor not male, the male is a Kajirus. Kajiri would just be plural. Might be a good idea to actually research that.
Sean Jameson says
Great spot, post update, thank you!