Halloween For Grown-Ups: Using Masks, Hoods, and Blindfolds for Kink Play


One of the reasons that National Kink Month and Halloween are so appropriately matched is that they are both great excuses to get dressed up. Not just in the sense of getting out the formal wear that you’d use to impress your family or employers, but taking on a whole new persona, the kind that’s not acceptable in everyday society, but may be much, much more exciting to you and your partner. Getting the right mask is an vital part of dressing up for kink or Halloween (or both). When we step outside (or further inside) ourselves, we can be more present and aware of what is happening to us and within us. Physical and emotional arousal can both be more intense when there are fewer distractions taking us out of what we’re feeling.

The masks and other costume gear that we sell at Stockroom go far beyond the kind that you’ll find at your local drugstore or Halloween pop-up store, so we want to give you a few tips on what’s available, how to take care of them, and a few ideas on how to incorporate masks into play.

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Know Your Gun Oil; Alabama Man Shows Why You Should Read the Ingredients

Whatever you’re buying, whoever you’re buying it from, “caveat emptor” is excellent advice to keep in mind. However, there are some cases where you have to be even more careful than usual. Check out this video on Facebook, shot by an Alabama man named Jamie Lee Bracey. Bracey went to the firearms counter in his local Wal-Mart and picked up a bottle of Gun Oil, thinking that it was… well, to oil guns. A quick read of the ingredients label quickly disabused him of that notion. In the video, he reads it to the viewer:

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Kinky Sex vs. Abuse: Why One Isn’t the Same as the Other


national-kink-monthOctober brings a lot of things with it: Besides Halloween and candy, it’s both National Kink Month and National Domestic Violence Awareness Month. In some ways, the two couldn’t be more different: Kink is a form of mutual pleasure, while abuse is a way of non-consensually controlling and harming another person.


Unfortunately, one of the greatest myths about kink is that it is inherently abuse. While it’s true that sometimes kinky relationships become abusive just like any other, there is a very distinct difference between kink and abuse. We thought that this would be an excellent time to talk about that difference, and how to help yourself or others when that line is crossed.

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Jay Rosen Talks About the Fantasies and Realities of Male Submission

Tomorrow, Stockroom U presents Up From the Bottom, a panel about the lives, desires, and realities of male submission. Men who submit to women are often ignored, dismissed, or mocked, even in kink communities, and we’re really looking forward to this weekend’s panel as an opportunity to talk about male submission in detail and with nuance. Jay Rosen, who set up the panel and is going to be moderating tomorrow, took a little time out to give us some insight on his feelings about submission.

Jay is a 42-year-old lifestyle submissive and father who has been involved in the D/s community for almost 20 years.  He has had the privilege of serving Lifestyle Dommes as well as Pro Dommes as their lifestyle submissive along with the privilege of performing with incredible Dommes on stage. He also performs ongoing duties as a service submissive to Club WICK as one of the elite service boys.

Could you describe the panel that you’re going to be holding at Stockroom U this weekend?

It’s submissive male only, and it’s really going to be talking about our lives individually, how long we’ve been in the scene, what kind of service we’ve been partial to, and really discussing what goes on in a submissive male’s head, and really kind of showing a different perspective, because I think there’s so many great panels on dominant men or dominant women that submissive males kind of get overlooked a little bit. So, we wanted to show a side of people that have diverse lives and diverse likes and have served lifestyle women, professional women, maybe served couples. But show it from a perspective of “Hey, this isn’t all-defining of our lives, but it’s something that we’re into and that we love and that we have grown to throw into the mix of our everyday life along with our kink world.

Why do you think that the perspective of submissive men gets overlooked even within kink communities?

I think that it gets overlooked because so many of the communities started out with male dominants. Even femdoms have struggled for a long time to get noticed in a lot of areas. And so male submissives kind of get overlooked because there’s so many of them that kind of come and go in the scene. There’s not a lot of people that I’ve experienced who have been around for a long time.

So you’re saying that submissive men are overlooked because there’s so many of them?

I think that we get overlooked because — you see so many women wearing such incredible outfits and men are so visually driven that they think that they want to be submissive, and then they find out about it, and then they’re out. They’re gone.

I was at a panel at The Stockroom with beautiful femdoms that were all pros, and they were all dressed incredibly, so if you were a male, and you were like “Oh my god, I want to serve them,” and then find out what that actually means, it’s a different thing. When they find out what it really is to be a submissive male — that’s not really for everyone.

So what does it mean to be a submissive male? What’s the difference between the fantasy and the reality?

What it means for me is to really make sure that the female I’m with or that I’m serving or whatever our arrangement is — that she is extremely happy with whatever she needs. So if it’s sexual, I am there to please her. If she wants me to service her as far as getting her drinks, I am anticipating her moves, her wants, her needs. That makes me happy to see her extremely happy.

A submissive male — at least from my perspective — is that I’m anticipating the person I’m with. What they love, what they like, what the little things are. So, if they get home from work, I’ve got a cocktail waiting for them. If they want their feet massaged, they don’t need to come over and tell me, I’m just kind of ready to do it.


What do you think the expectations are that people have about submission, and how do they clash with reality?

For men, we have our insecurities about things, and a lot of us don’t want to talk about them because they’re scared that a female will not like that. I think it’s that people think that they should get something if they show up at a party or if they pay to go to an event. They have this idea that there’s going to be all these beautiful women that are going to want to use them for whatever they want, and that’s kind of the fantasy of it. It’s not always as easy as people think, so when they don’t get what they want, they get very discouraged, and they’re like, “Well, I’m not doing this again.”

Do you think that there’s a stigma to being a submissive man in kink communities?

I do — in certain groupings. When I started out in Los Angeles, it was a totally different scenario than it is now. There was a lot of male doms who really did not like male submissives being around. They looked down on us because they thought that we were weaker mentally. I ran into that a lot — I still run into it a little bit.

I think that a lot of femdoms even take advantage of some of the kind of people who are very pliable. You know, they want to please, they want to be there. I think some women really take advantage of that and kind of twist it up a little bit. So, they kind of look at male submissives like “Oh, whatever, they’re pathetic.” And then there’s the grouping of women who absolutely think submissive men are amazing. But there is definitely a small stigma against them in the fetish community still.

What’s the first piece of advice you’d give someone who was interested in becoming a submissive man?

I always tell people in the younger groups to be patient. Don’t let anybody treat you with disrespect because that’s not what this is about. Don’t let anybody treat you like a doormat. It’s really important, if you’re going to be a submissive male to really have a good sense of confidence and that’s not always instinctual for people coming into the scene. You learn it through experience.

And I tell them to be patient. If you go to a play party, don’t expect that you’re going to get played with. Be patient. Meet people, be cordial. You have to be able to show confidence, because that attracts women all the time, whether you’re a submissive man or not. The women that prey on [men] who have no confidence, well — they’re the ones that are dangerous to everybody in the community. It makes the community come off as bad and scary, and that’s why there’s such a stigma.

What do you hope people will get out of the panel tomorrow?

I really hope that people gain a better understanding of what male submissives go through, what we’ve experienced, what our mindset is, how we’ve had difficulties relating even to the femdoms that we know.

I’d hope the women can gain a little bit more understanding of “Oh, this is what makes them tick.” It’s not about showing up, putting them on a cross and beating them. That’s a great part of it, yeah, but it’s helping people understand that we come to these things because we want to, and we love doing it. We all have our own worlds that are separate from this, and we’ve blended them.


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October 10 at Stockroom University: “Up From the Bottom” Panel


This submissives panel will feature a male-oriented conversation shared by those who have been openly living as bottoms in the D/s community for most of their adult lives. Hear as each share their various and diverse roles and journeys.

Whether passionate about serving a Lifestyle Domme or wanting to witness a slave’s experience with Pro Dommes, join the conversation and learn about the many colors of submission. Explore the various realities of a 24/7 total power exchange and the ongoing duties of lifestyle service.

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How to Do Rough Sex: Danarama Talks About the Risks and Rewards


This Saturday, renowned educator and bondage expert Danarama will present a workshop on “rough sex” at Stockroom University. Although rough sex is consistently listed as one of the most popular fantasies among people of all genders and orientations, it’s also one of the most misunderstood. Danarama’s workshop will take on some of the misconceptions and show people how to explore some of their most primal fantasies safely and consensually. We talked to him earlier this week about what his class is going to cover and why rough sex remains such a compelling fantasy.


Can you give a quick summary of what you’re going to be teaching at your workshop?

One of the most popular fantasies out there is rough sex. It’s a popular fantasy, but a lot of people don’t know how to go about doing it in a safe way. Particularly if you’re someone who really is a caring partner, sometimes you don’t want to be rough with your partner. But at the same time, as much as you care about your partner, sometimes your lover just wants to be taken. They want to know that there’s this unbridled passion, and the way to do that is not to make love, but to have sex in a primal, rough, and almost overwhelming manner.

To do that, there are a few techniques that you can use to make sex seem really primal and rough while doing it in a safe way that preserves not only safety, but consensuality and everybody’s agreed limitations. So I’m going to show how you can have these communications with your partner, and then how to use various take-downs and armholds and ways to invigorate even mundane positions like “missionary” or “doggy style” with rough sex techniques. I’m going to show how to use points of leverage to take control of your partner in a way that makes sex much rougher and — I guess primal is the best word.

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National Kink Month 2015: A Time to Celebrate Sexuality and Community


At Stockroom, October 1 means more than starting the countdown to that night with the pumpkins, candy, and costumes. Every year since 2012, we’ve celebrated October as National Kink Month. For us, it’s a time not only to celebrate the two and a half decades that we’ve been in business, but the kink community itself.

It’s appropriate that this year, National Kink Month starts right in the middle of Banned Books Week, because kink communities have suffered not only from moral censure, but are persistently teetering on the edge of illegality. Even here in the United States, where the law ostensibly protects our freedom of speech and of the press, kinky people have to be very careful about how and where they express their desires. The educational materials and resources that make it possible for people to explore BDSM in a safe, sane, and consensual manner can be suppressed using the slimmest of excuses. Our greatest protection against that is not the law, but the activists and educators in our own communities who have put so much time and passion into building spaces where people can explore taboo sexualities without shame.


This is undoubtedly an interesting time to be into kink. In 2012, when we declared the first National Kink Month, E.L. James’s erotic novel Fifty Shades of Grey had been in print for only seven months. In February of this year, a major motion picture adaptation was released.

A lot of experienced kinksters have feelings that could be politely called “mixed” when it comes to discussing James’s novels, but there’s one thing that can’t be denied:  The success of the trilogy has made a lot of people more openly curious about BDSM and other forms of kink. James may get a lot of things wrong about consent and safety, but having Fifty Shades on the best-seller list and in the movie theaters means that people are more likely to look at our community with curiosity and as a source of education, rather than disgust.

Cover of Master of O paperback edition.

Master of O, by Ernest Greene, goes much farther with the kink than Fifty Shades, and clearly emphasizes consent of all parties.

The video below, starring Stockroom’s own Head Mistress, Hudsy Hawn, is a great example. Buzzfeed’s “Try Guys” came to Hudsy to see what “‘Fifty Shades’ Style BDSM” is like and put their experience on camera. (We’re not exactly sure what the difference is between Fifty Shades Style and regular BDSM, except that perhaps the former may require that one of the partners be a super-handsome mega-billionaire.)

The video is a good demonstration of the kind of experience that lots of people are having right now: They’ve heard about kink through rumors, cop shows, and the occasional porno, and so only have a collection of half-truths and fantasies about what it really is. If they’re lucky enough to hook up with someone as experienced and ethical as Hudsy for their first time, they’re going to learn very quickly about how essential consent and negotiation is in any BDSM scene.

The awkwardness of the Try Guys in the Buzzfeed video is not only kind of charming, but should also be familiar to anyone who’s been a newbie in a dungeon or a private scene. That’s why it’s such a great way to start off National Kink Month: We’ve all been there. Lots more will be there, especially now that E.L. James opened the Pandora’s Box for so many people who never noticed it sitting on the counter in plain sight. The reason that we celebrate National Kink Month is not only to pay tribute to the people who are already part of the community, but to make it a more welcoming place for those who would like to be part of it. There are a lot of pleasures to be had in kink, but a lot of responsibilities.

At Stockroom, this month will be a great time to get new gear and toys. Our Screaming Syren Sale will feature 20% discounts on clothing from Syren and Stormy Leather for the first nine days of the month. Throughout the month, you’ll be able to buy some of Stockroom’s finest gear and toys for 35-50% off.

But this month is about more than selling stuff for us; it’s also a time for education, because that’s what keeps us alive as a community. In addition to the usual workshops happening at Stockroom Hall in Los Angeles, we’re going to post more information about specific fetishes and practices that are hard to find right here on the blog and in our social media channels.

It’s going to be a great month for us all. Let us know what kind of kinks you’re playing with, and what you’re interested in exploring.

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October 3 at Stockroom University: “Rough Sex” Hosted by Danarama


Danarama demonstrates and coaches a wide range of rough sex techniques that can safely make sex feel excitingly brutal while remaining safe, for both women or men in control. After discussing negotiation, mental, and safety factors, Dan and his model dive in and demo dozens of fast and functional tips and skills to intensify sex, including:

  • Arm/body holds;
  • Creative use of clothing and furniture for impromptu restraint;
  • Powerful sex positions of high exposure or compression;
  • Mind-blowing fingerbanging, cruel handjobs;
  • Forced oral;
  • Hair pulling;
  • Slapping;
  • Throat holds;
  • Talking dirty;
  • Using vibrators and other toys;
  • Forcing or denying orgasms and other forms of control.

What: “Rough Sex” Hosted by Danarama
Note: You can also purchase tickets on arrival if you prefer.

When: Saturday October 3, 2:00-5:00pm

Where: Stockroom Hall: 2811 W. Sunset Blvd. Located next to our retail store.

About the Instructor:


danarama in dungeon

Currently the director of KinkUniversity.com and a lifestyle Dom since 1992, Danarama’s experience includes his 13 years as one of the world renown (now retired) Two Knotty Boys rope bondage instruction duo, a co-author of two best-selling rope bondage books and creator/co-creator of numerous free bondage tutorials on video. In his light-hearted yet engaging workshops, Dan brings his intensely creative BDSM style to bear, backed by his degree in Communication and four decades performing on stage. His rope bondage rigging has been seen adorning models in the work of many famous fetish photographers including Ken Marcus, Eric Kroll, and Z. Maitri, and he can be seen on numerous bondage web sites including DungeonSex.com and TheUpperFloor.com.

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A Night For Mistress Cyan: The BDSM Community Stands Up For One of Our Own

Mistress Cyan

Mistress Cyan

It’s hard to articulate the sudden rush of feeling that hits when someone you care for announces that they have cancer. It feels like the emotional equivalent of nausea; anger, fear, grief, horror, and helplessness churn together in one sickening mass. Sometimes one of those emotions wins out and forces its way to the surface; sometimes you just keep sitting there numb and cold while you try to sort out the news.

You could see that swirl of emotion happening in the BDSM community when Mistress Cyan announced last month that she was going into chemotherapy for cancer of the tonsils. Her roles as the owner of the Sanctuary Studios LAX dungeon and founder of DomCon are really only her most prominent activities in the kink and leather communities. The number of awards and honors that she’s accumulated since 1990, when she first became a professional domina, are far too numerous to list here. As a trans woman, she’s been a great trailblazer and advocate within BDSM, which unfortunately can be as hostile to trans people as mainstream culture.

The one thing that leavened Mistress Cyan’s original announcement is that her doctors also told her that they expected a full recovery. “You will more than likely die of old age in another 20-30 years and not cancer,” they told her, “BUT there are going to be about three really tough months coming up.”


Those three months include not only chemotherapy, but extensive oral surgery. She’s already had 27 teeth extracted to eliminate the risk of infection spreading.

Mistress Cyan has been a friend, a mentor, and a supporter for many of us, and we’re going to be here for her in the months ahead. We hope that you’ll join us in this.

If you’re in the Los Angeles area, you can help support Mistress Cyan get through the next few months emotionally and financially by attending a fundraiser and play party next Saturday, September 26, at her own Sanctuary Studios LAX. The door fee is $20 and all of that goes to Mistress Cyan’s medical expenses. The evening will include:

  • Stage Performers including Stockroom’s Head Mistress Hudsy Hawn, Bettie Bondage, and Sir Valentino.
  • Silent Auction;
  • Raffle with kinky toys and other prizes.

Stockroom is, of course, donating some of our products to this event. Specifics will be announced during the week.

You can RSVP and invite your friends either at Facebook or Fetlife, depending on your preference.

If you’re not in the L.A. area, or won’t be at party time, friends of Mistress Cyan have also started a crowdfunding drive on GoFundMe. If there’s one thing that can be called positive to come out of this whole thing, it’s to see how many people have stepped forward to help. In only four days, the crowdfunding campaign has raised $3,720 of a target of $6,000. It shouldn’t be hard to push it the rest of the way.

From all of us, thanks very much to Mistress Cyan for her hard work over the past two and a half decades, and we wish Her very good luck in the months ahead.

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September 19 at Stockroom University: “Positions and Protocols” with Sir Valentino


Slave positions should be practical and easily memorized, while pleasing to the Master and fulfilling to the slave.

In this class, Instructor and Male Dominant Sir Valentino will help you create positions customized to your specific relationship and physical abilities. This event will also focus on the importance of determining appropriate protocols and how to embed them into your daily lifestyle.

From always practical and always useful to impressive and erotic, these Positions and Protocols are guaranteed to enhance any D/s or M/s Dynamic.

What: Positions and Protocols, with Sir Valentino
Note: You can also purchase tickets on arrival if you prefer.

When: Saturday September 19, 2-5PM

Where: Stockroom Hall: 2811 W. Sunset Blvd. Located next to our retail store.

About Your Instructor:

Sir Valentino Harrison is a Lifestyle Master who has served as Southern California Leather Master 2013 and South West Leather Master 2014. He is extremely devoted to giving the community charity, education and service.

Sir Valentino has presented at DomCon LA, Olympus Leather, Sanctuary LAX Studios, Threshold, The Lair de Sade, Dungeon Servitus and Fetish Ball, to name a few.

Sir Valentino along with his two slaves, panda and cupcake, appeared on “I’m Married to A….” on VH1.

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