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BDSM: Theory and Practice of Figging

Cylon_raider
Note: This is part 6 of an occasional ongoing "how to" series on BDSM.

Part 1 of the series, How to Tie a Rope Harness Part I, is here.
Part 2 of the series, How to Tie a Frog Tie, is here.
Part 3 of the series, How to Tie a Shinju, is here.
Part 4 of the series, How to Make a Custom Dildo out of Ice, is here.
Part 5 of the series, How to Make a Spikey Decorative Collar, is here.
As you can probably figure out, most of these tutorials are really, really not work-safe.

This particular tutorial is work-safe, at least photographically (the text is probably not very work-safe, though!). It describes the practice of figging, which is making a butt plug out of ginger for an interesting warm tingle sensation. It's particularly good for disciplining those naughty subs for whom an old-fashioned paddling has become humdrum. I recently had an opportunity to explore this with one of my sweeties, to great effect. If it sounds like it's up your alley, clicky the link!


 
 

The theory and practice of
GINGER FIGGING


"Figging" is a name for a practice involving the use of ginger root for stimulation. It's a practice with historical roots; allegedly, this technique was developed during Victorian times as a way to discipline wayward women. In any event, it's great fun for people who enjoy moderate to fairly intense sensation play, and it's quite unlike anything else I've discovered.

At its simplest, figging is the practice of peeling and carving a piece of ginger root into a butt plug and inserting it in the anus. The ginger oils gradually create a warming, then a mildly burning sensation, that becomes much more intense if the recipient squeezes down around the root. It's surprisingly easy to do, and one of the nice things about it is that it can create moderately intense sensations without any risk of injuring or harming your partner.

Figging is a fairly rare practice that seems to have declined in popularity recently, which I think is a shame because it's so easy and the effects are so interesting. It's a lot of fun, and I encourage people to experiment with it. So without further ado, here's a simple tutorial that you can use as a how-to guide for figging.


Starting out

All you need to experiment with figging is a ginger root and a sharp kitchen knife. Look for a complete, intact ginger root, rather than one that's been cut up beforehand; once cut, the ginger oil is exposed to air, and the potecy decreases significantly (unless you ferment the root, which I'll describe below).

The ginger root, for those who haven't seen one, is a central oblong root a little smaller than a fist with several round, thick "fingers" extending from it. The root is covered with a tough skin. The goal is to carve out one of the fingers, peel it, and whittle it down into an appropriate size and shape to be used as a butt plug.

A sharp kitchen knife makes very short work of the ginger root. You'll want to cut out one of the "fingers" by carving into the heart of the root, so that the finished plug is long enough to use without getting lost. The pictures below show step by step how to carve out the root, and you can get a sense of how large the root is by comparing it to the knife:

How to carve a ginger root for figging

Choose a finger and cut it from the root by slicing through the central part of the root. Peel the skin off the finger and carve it smooth and rounded, a bit larger around than your thumb (or thicker if your partner really likes anal play), as shown in the second photo. Round off the end of the root and remove all traces of the skin; the ginger oils won't penetrate the skin of the root, so you'll want to remove it completely. Near the base of the finger, carve a shallow groove as shown in the third picture. This acts to hold the root in place when you insert it.

That's really all there is to it. Once you have the root carved as shown in the third part of the picture, rinse it off under running water and you're ready to begin.


After you've carved the ginger, wash your hands thoroughly. Otherwise, you'll probably have ginger oils on your hands, and you don't want to touch your eyes or your partner's eyes without washing your hands.

Have your partner lie down face up or face down with legs open. Slowly work the ginger root into your partner anally until you reach the groove you carved. This groove will prevent the root from moving and hold it there. Don't use lube on the root; you'll find that it'll be slippery enough to work fine without lube, and adding lube will prevent the ginger oil from doing its job.

Then wait. The results don't happen right away; they build up slowly over time. Your partner will begin to feel a sense of warmth, which will increase steadily until it starts to tingle, then over several minutes become more and more intense.

Next steps

When the ginger works its magic, you can do what the Victorians did and take this as your cue to turn your partner face-down for some good old-fashioned impact play. The victorians would use a crop at this point; if that's your thing, you can find a guide to cropping here. Or, you can simply spank your partner with your hand, if you like. Figging works great with spanking, paddling, or cropping because if your partner tenses up and tightens in anticipation of the smack, the ginger root will create a very sharp burning, which won't go away until your partner relaxes.

But, of course, not tightening up means that the smack is more intense. Ah, decisions, decisions...

The ginger will probably last about fifteen or twenty minutes, after which the burning sensation will fade very quickly.

If your partner is female:

You need not restrict yourself to using the ginger anally. You can also carve a piece of ginger into a dildo for use vaginally, where the effects are more directly sexual; some women say that ginger root creates very strong sexual arousal.

To do this, start with the same basic idea as carving the butt plug from the ginger, but you need not carve the groove in the base of the finger. Leave enough of the central part of the root that you can grip the end and use it as a handle; and as before, take care not to touch your eyes after handling peeled ginger.

Yet another way you can add some delicious excitement to the experience is by carving a small (about 1/2" long) wedge from the central part of the root, then scooping a concave depression in the top of the wedge as shown here:

Spread your partner's labia open and place the wedge, narrow end forwrd, directly over her clitoris, so that the scooped depression snuggles down directly over her clit. As before, the sensation builds slowly, beginning as a sense of coolness and then growing steadily into a moderately strong tingle. For many women, this tingle is accompanied by strong sexual arousal and a strong desire to orgasm. When combined with vaginal or anal penetration, it's quite intense and a great deal of fun. Depending on how your partner's body is shaped, you may find that you can tuck the wedge in place so that it stays put without holding it.

Tips for advanced figging

Figging is a lot of fun, but for some people, the sensations aren't really strong enough to have the desired effect. The potency of fresh, newly-cut ginger is moderately strong, but some folks like a little more sensation. You can get this sensation by fermenting the ginger before you use it.

To do this, take a piece of ginger root and seal it in a plastic baggie or wrap it tightly in plastic wrap, then refrigerate it for three or four days. After it's been sitting in the refrigerator for several days, remove it from the plastic wrap. If the skin of the ginger is discolored or has mold spots on it, don't worry; that's perfectly normal.

Peel and carve the root as shown above. Ginger that's been tightly wrapped in an airtight plastic bag and refrigerated for a few days will be much more potent, and the sensation will be significantly stronger. Experiment with aging it for varying lengths of time to find the point that's most enjoyable!



 
     

Comments

( 45 comments — Leave a comment )
redhotlips
Dec. 7th, 2007 12:41 am (UTC)
*fans self*
I think I found the next thing to try.
dayo
Dec. 7th, 2007 01:10 am (UTC)
Raar. That is all. :)
samhainborn
Dec. 7th, 2007 01:56 am (UTC)
I first heard about figging a few years ago at one of the Rutland, VT munches. Intriguing, for sure, though not sure if it's quite my thing. I am curious, would using the ginger vaginally make the woman more likely to experience a UTI or other sort of pussy irritation?

Just a random thought....

:)
tacit
Dec. 7th, 2007 09:40 pm (UTC)
Y'know, that's a good question. My suspicion is that the answer is "no"--I don't think the ginger oils would affect the normal flora of the vagina--but I've never tried vaginal figging with someone prone to UTIs or yeast infections or anything like that.
(Anonymous)
Dec. 26th, 2007 11:10 am (UTC)
Anti-Viral/Anti-Bacterial
Good day.

I'm not sure if it is good or bad in this vaginal figging issue, but ginger does contain compounds with proven anti-viral and anti-bacterial properties.

So, it might help prevent infections, but I could also see it unbalancing the natural flora.

Coyote
(Anonymous)
Jan. 1st, 2008 09:01 am (UTC)
Ginger vaginally works very well. Lots wetter and it makes a gal cum very intense and often.

Sir Andy
matthew_g
Dec. 7th, 2007 03:35 am (UTC)
You are a bad, bad person.

Good job! :)
cjhm
Dec. 7th, 2007 04:17 am (UTC)
This is extremely interesting - do you mind if I c&p it for my husband? I don't think he's on your list but I'd like to show him.
tacit
Dec. 7th, 2007 09:37 pm (UTC)
By all means, feel free! Or send him here; the entry isn't friends-locked. :)
cjhm
Dec. 8th, 2007 03:32 am (UTC)
perfect! muchas gracias
joreth
Dec. 7th, 2007 09:40 pm (UTC)
All of his tutorials are also available on http://www.symtoys.com in the Sex Ideas And Scenarios section. These are, presumably, intended to be shared with people. And as tacit's list isn't usually friends-locked, your hubby doesn't need to be on his list to read it either :-)
beckycaret
Dec. 7th, 2007 04:37 am (UTC)
I absolutely love reading your livejournal, and look forward to things like this every time i log in! Thank you for all these wonderful ideas!

and btw, bought the njoy... my local women's sex shop renamed the dildo "Sylvia" and were happy to sell it to me for $1 more than the online price (not including the shipping). LOVED it, was completely worth it, and the review you included about it helped me to enjoy it even more. I'll be in Atlanta with KarenR during Christmas if you're around that time so i could buy you drinks and pick your brain.
tacit
Dec. 7th, 2007 09:38 pm (UTC)
I will definitely be around over Christmas, and I'm always up for being drink-bought and brain-picked. When will you be in town?
beckycaret
Dec. 7th, 2007 09:50 pm (UTC)
starting 12/24 ending 12/30, i'll have karen shoot you an evite to a party she's having at her apt, or ask her if we call all have dinner one of those nights, when you're available!
tacit
Dec. 9th, 2007 06:51 pm (UTC)
Talked to Karen last night, and I'm definitely planning to be there!
beckycaret
Dec. 9th, 2007 06:55 pm (UTC)
great! there were two parties, though, should i add you onto my RSVP for Saturday, December 29, 5:00PM (sisterhood party), should you get permission from other girls to be there?
tacit
Dec. 12th, 2007 09:53 pm (UTC)
Sounds good to me! I've talked to the folks in question, and they say go for it.
quaryn_dk
Dec. 7th, 2007 09:26 am (UTC)
Oh, my... I think I'll be sending this link to my husband and boyfriend...
tacit
Dec. 9th, 2007 06:52 pm (UTC)
At the same time? Brave girl! :)
quaryn_dk
Dec. 9th, 2007 07:32 pm (UTC)
Nah, I won't be seeing the boyfriend until January sometime at the earliest.
peristaltor
Dec. 7th, 2007 08:10 pm (UTC)
GLook for a complete, intact ginger root. . . .

I know, I know, I'm naive. Is glooking a sex term to which I have not yet been introduced? ;-)
tacit
Dec. 7th, 2007 09:35 pm (UTC)
Ngar! I am truly a lousy typist. It's been fixed. As everyone knows, "glocking" is an activity done with small imported 9mm firearms, but that's a whole 'nother subject...
peristaltor
Dec. 9th, 2007 07:45 pm (UTC)
Frank Zappa had a song ("Cy Borg" in Joe's Garage) where a guy "plooks" a sex robot to death. "Plooking too hard! Too hard!!!" were its last words.

I've always wondered what the hell that was. Now I have "glook" to add to the list. Or is it just a phonetic corruption?
joreth
Dec. 7th, 2007 09:41 pm (UTC)
Sweetie, you and your brain terrify me :-D
tacit
Dec. 9th, 2007 06:52 pm (UTC)
Yet you keep coming back! Obviously, I'm not scary enough!
james_the_evil1
Dec. 7th, 2007 11:59 pm (UTC)
Kitchen tip: Since every house should have a box of sterile vinyl or PVC gloves laying around, just slip a pair on before slicing things like ginger or peppers that have irritating oils :)
Switch to a fresh pair before inserting them & keep a box handy so you can pull fresh ones on & off as needed during play :)
gentleindiff
Dec. 9th, 2007 06:54 am (UTC)
First off, I can't wait to try this.

But I'm actually commenting for another reason. If you don't have the time, I totally understand, but I was wondering if you could help me give some advice to a girl on one of my communities:

http://community.livejournal.com/bdsm/150552.html

I want to tell her that this jealousy is a problem and that perhaps she isn't ready for a poly relationship, but jealousy happens all the time in monogamous relationships and i wouldn't say "oh well maybe you're not ready for monogamy" so it feels like I'm being biased. If you could take a look, that'd be great.
tacit
Dec. 9th, 2007 06:50 pm (UTC)
Well, I posted a reply, though I have no idea if it'll be helpful or not.
ysabel
Dec. 12th, 2007 09:34 pm (UTC)
I've heard rumors that ginger figging helps get good dressage action when participating in ponyplay.

Haven't ever had a chance to try it, though. This guide is perfect, thank you.
gentleindiff
Jan. 5th, 2008 12:25 am (UTC)
Quick question. The carved root can't be reused, correct?
tacit
Jan. 7th, 2008 03:52 pm (UTC)
Nope. When it loses its potency, it quits having the desired effect; that usually seems to take about twenty or thirty minutes after it's applied.

The part of the root you don't use can be tightly wrapped in plastic and refrigerated, and it'll stay potent.
(Anonymous)
Jun. 10th, 2008 03:33 pm (UTC)
ginger figging
tried it ------awesome!
(Anonymous)
Dec. 14th, 2009 04:30 pm (UTC)
Re: ginger figging
After being figged last night (both vaginal and anal) AND again this a.m. I know for sure where the term "walking gingerly" has come from!

The gloves are a good idea, the oils also worked their "magic" on my nipples, once they had been roughed up a bit by a pumice stone
(Anonymous)
Jan. 18th, 2010 07:00 pm (UTC)
ginger figging
Great idea. I'm going to try this later this afternoon. Can ginger also be used on the male penis, I'm thinking on the cock head, to create the same effect? Or possibly internally, in the uretha with a cylindrical slice of ginger and inserting it?
tacit
Jan. 19th, 2010 01:21 am (UTC)
Re: ginger figging
It can. Used urethrally, the sensations are VERY intense.
(Anonymous)
Jan. 20th, 2011 11:26 am (UTC)
Re: ginger figging
Another idea for gingering up the male - grate fresh ginger and place a tablespoon or so in the end of a condom. Have him put the condom on - and attempt to masturbate. The more he strokes, the more ginger juice is forced into his urethra. As his erection softens, even more juice slips in - and around the head of the cock. In addition, the motion serves to "stir" the juices, so it tends to not fade away the way a "fig" would.

If one were really REALLY evil, they might have the submissive keep a bowl of ice water at the ready, to "wash off" once they are allowed to remove the condom. Hee heee heeee....

MzParker
(who is really really REALLY evil!)
(Anonymous)
Oct. 20th, 2011 07:23 pm (UTC)
Re: ginger figging
that does indeed "ginger up" the male. the sensation is truly intense and should be manage to come he will experience the "heated" after affects.
(Anonymous)
Nov. 15th, 2012 08:42 pm (UTC)
more fun with ginger
Even MORE fun with ginger root can be had by just using the essential oil which is available in aroma therapy and other such stores. The advantage of ginger oil is that ANY object can be coated with it and then inserted as for example strap on dildos. I have enjoyed bareback fucking vaginas and rectums with ginger oil applied to my sub first which then spreads to me cock and balls and everywhere deliciously. A 2 oz vial of ginger oil costs 25 bucks and lasts for a year. Enjoy!
(Anonymous)
Nov. 16th, 2012 02:06 am (UTC)
Got figged
My Dom ordered me to fig myself while he was at work. It burned but I left it in as ordered. It's a great sensation.
(Anonymous)
Aug. 13th, 2013 03:45 am (UTC)
I want to try this on my sub. I have a personal rule not to inflict anything on my sub that I haven't tried myself. So I tried ginger, and I found it very stimulating. To this end, I'm definitely going to use it in conjunction with other things like spanking and caning with her. I may have become a fan of figging!
(Anonymous)
Oct. 5th, 2013 08:33 pm (UTC)
After reading many storiies of people being figged I went out and bought some ginger root and snuck off to the bathroom to experience myself. Omg I love it...I just wish I had someone here as my master enjoying the fun with me and spanking me before making me do even more bdsm stuff.
(Anonymous)
Nov. 14th, 2013 09:05 pm (UTC)
Do you need to use an enema prior to play, as you would for pegging?
tacit
Nov. 14th, 2013 09:16 pm (UTC)
It's not really necessary in my experience, as the ginger root is small and doesn't go very deep.
(Anonymous)
Nov. 15th, 2013 11:00 am (UTC)
Thank you, I'm trying this for the first time with my bottom and want to make sure I'm playing with him properly. I really appreciate all the information you have shared.
(Anonymous)
Mar. 7th, 2014 11:39 pm (UTC)
Tried this 4 or 5 times and never felt anything more than a mild tingle. Was somewhat disappointed...
( 45 comments — Leave a comment )
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