A Manual for Basic Fire Play
Including Fire Safety, Burns and Treating Burns
Fire Play Master
TABLE OF CONTENTS
Fire play is both a play form and an art form. It captures
one's soul as no other form of BDSM play can. There is both
a mystical and a magical quality to it in the hands of a
skilled player. To the observer it is an awesome sight.
The newcomer to the lifestyle seeing fire play for the
first time may wonder if there is a trick to it. There is
no trick, no illusion, the blue flame on naked flesh and
the skin are real. It is only the skill, the rhythm, and
the timing of the Dominant, which keeps the submissive
from being burned.
The submissive observer may have seen it before. She may
have even done it. And knows what her sister on the table
is experiencing, and secretly finds herself wishing that
it was herself on the table. The submissive that has yet to
try it may find her drawn to it. She may yet fear the fire,
fear being burned; still watching the skill of the Dominant
player is building inner confidence that he would not burn
her. She knows that she will feel the kiss of the flame against
her skin, perhaps not that night but one day for certain. When
she is ready for it she will lay herself upon the table, for
the dancing flame has captivated her soul.
The Dominant observer watches and his soul too is captivated
by the flame. Inwardly he admires the rhythm and flow of the
player's motion, and wonders if it is something he could learn.
He wants to gain knowledge, become a more versatile player.
Perhaps he will ask the player to teach him the skills necessary.
This manual is written for all of those described above, and for
all of those who have a desire to experience fire play from any
perspective, Dominant or submissive. It is intended to be an
aid for a hands-on training workshop and later to be used as
reference and refresher.
It is not intended to be a stand-alone training manual for
teaching fire play.
Fire play practiced by one who has developed the skills for
it is reasonably safe, and submissives rarely get burned. In
the hands of the unskilled attempting to do fire play the risk
of an accident is increased a thousand fold or more. If you
come across this manual and have not attended one of the author's
workshops, then by all means feel free to read this, but before
you decide to play, find a skilled fire play mentor, one who
you respect, and have him show you the hands-on that is necessary
to practice safe and sane fire play.
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What Fire Play Is and Is Not
Fire play is one form of what is termed edge play or playing on the
edge. It is also an advanced form of play. The term advanced is used
here not necessarily to imply that one has to be in the lifestyle
for a long time before attempting to do fire play, but rather that
one should be mentored by one who is an experienced fire player instead
of reading about it and trying learn it on one's own.
It's not a difficult skill to learn, and yes fire play does
require a certain amount of skill. If you have a reasonable
amount of coordination, are willing to listen, and can stay
focused, you should be able to learn fire play without too
much difficulty .All basic fire play is, is a series of
practiced movements and timing. The timing is the time between
laying the fire on the skin and brushing away the flame before
the submissive is burned or hurt. That is the essence of basic
Fire play is the only BDSM play form where there are always
three living entities involved in the play.
Fire if left uncontrolled can , and will take on a life of
its own, so it should always be considered a living entity.
The other two entities are the Dominant and the submissive.
The Dominant fire player needs the ability to control all three
at the same time.
Fire play is a sensual play, meaning that it is more orientated
toward sensual pleasure rather than toward pain. There is almost
constant physical contact between the Dominant and the submissive
during play. The Dominant's hand is always brushing the flame from
the skin. Even when he is changing torches, he should keep one hand
in contact with the submissive as much as possible. This helps to
relax and reassure the submissive.
While fire play is an intense experience for both the submissive
and the Dominant it is not pain oriented. I caution those who
want to learn or experience fire playas a means of getting new
pain sensations that the risk of great bodily harm is too great
to try it with that mind set. If you can't control the urge to
either inflict pain or receive pain then perhaps fire play is
something that you shouldn't try.
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THE OBJECTIVES OF FIRE PLAY
When we play does that play have an objective? How many have
~ ever given it conscious thought. Let's begin by giving a
definition to objective. I love to define things because it
is only through definition and being on the same page so to
speak that we can communicate effectively. Back to defining
It is a singular path to reach a specific goal that one has in mind.
I think everyone has objectives in their play whether or not they've
given it conscious thought. Conversely, there can be many objectives
in one session or scene. There are two terms tossed around the community
and used almost interchangeably. To me a
session is play done in privacy. A scene is public play before
If you are at home playing it is a session. If you are playing at
a club or a party it is a scene. In either case many objectives can
and do come into play.
When I do fire play I have many objectives in mind. Two
of the more important ones are don't burn the submissive and
don't burn down the building, beyond that are other objectives.
Did the submissive go into sub space?
Was there intensity in the session?
Did I take the time to help the submissive relax?
Was I relaxed?
Did I read her body language right?
Did I give her breaks from the fire?
Were my movements fluid and sure?
Did I handle unexpected events smoothly?
Did I work the fire around her body so hot spots were minimal?
Was there variety in the play?
Did the session or scene end prematurely because
of some problem?
Is the sub unharmed?
Is the place still intact?
If you've never thought about it, those are the types of things
that either consciously or subconsciously goes through my mind
when I fire play.
If I'm able to answer the above questions to myself: yes,
yes, yes, yes, yes, yes, yes, yes, yes, yes, no, no, no;
then I've had a good, if not an awesome session or scene.
If I can't answer the questions that way, then I need to
understand what was wrong and correct it for the next time.
I used this as an example of how I approach my objectives
for fire play. Yours may be the same or they may be entirely
different. The real point is to get you to think and
Develop a clear idea of where you are going and how you are
going to get there.
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THE EQUIPMENT NEEDED FOR FIRE PLAY
There is certain equipment you will need to do fire play. Keep
in mind that comfort and safety are of the utmost importance.
Both the Dom and the sub should be in comfortable positions
before play begins. The submissive needs to be able to relax
completely. The Dominant needs to be in a position where He/She
has freedom of movement, and won't tire or get cramped muscles
during the play. The floor is out for play. A bed is good, but
experience has shown that most beds are a little low for long
sessions because the muscles in the lower back tend to cramp
after a time. Best is a table with a thick pad covered with
vinyl, leather, or some sort of upholstery material that can
be easily cleaned. Vinyl and leather are both initially cold
against bare skin and the skin tends to stick to both so a bed
sheet or blanket should be placed between the submissive and
the upholstery. This should be done for both comfort and hygiene.
The above is referenced for either play at home or at a play
party where the host allows fire play. Keep in mind that the
play party host may not have an adequate table for play and you
may have to supply your own with the host's permission. BDSM
clubs which allow fire play should and usually do have a table
suited for the purpose.
Tables can be expensive $250-$300. M&K Creations makes
a quality combination fire play/bondage table for $260.
You will also need a table of some sort and of sufficient
size to safely hold your play tools. Keep in mind that you
will be using a lit candle and have an open container of alcohol
close by. There needs to be about one foot of distance between
the candle and the alcohol. In addition you need room to lie out
extra torches and possibly other highly flammable materials such
as flash cotton or flash paper. The use of flash cotton or flash
paper is not covered in this manual but will be in the manual
covering advanced techniques. If you plan to incorporate another
play form into your session or scene routine, such as knife play
or use ice or cold packs in your play, keep in mind that the table
should be of a size to hold those items as well. For playing at
home a nightstand, end table, or side table should suit your purpose.
For play at a play party you should check with the host and make
sure that there is a table that will suit your needs available for
you to use. Some BDSM clubs have a fire play area set up, others don't.
Usually they can find something that will work. The drawback is that
sometimes what they find for you to use means that it is something
used for another form of play so potentially you are affecting someone
Experience has shown that it is best for you to provide your
own equipment table. There are good reasons for it. It is something
that is familiar to you and you know it will work. You know how you
want your toys laid out and you are confident that it is the correct
size to hold everything.
If you are taking your equipment table to either a play
party or a club, then it must be not only of sturdy construction
so it won't easily tip over. It needs to be collapsible, and
light for easy transportation. A wooden t v tray works well
for this purpose. It is of sufficient size and fulfills the
Quality wooden t v trays are available at several stores in
the area. Costco sells a set of 4 with stand for $25.00.
A fire extinguisher is a safety item you should have. If you
don't have one in your home, then I would suggest you purchase
one. Check with the host of any play party that you plan to attend
to see if afire extinguisher is available. If one is not then you
should take one with you. Most BDSM clubs have afire extinguisher
available. Check with the DM before you begin play to see if they
have one and make sure it is handy and ready for use. Remember a
fire extinguisher is only good if it is close at hand. If you have
to look for it in an emergency you are probably in big trouble.
and how to use them will be discussed further under the
section on fire safety. Fire extinguishers are available
at most hardware stores Home Depot, Lowes, Ace, and others.
Make sure that it is an
The cost is $15 and up.
Some sort of first aid items should be apart of your
toy bag. You should have items like a cold pack; burn
ointment, Neosporin, band-aids and disinfectant swabs
at a minimum. This will treat most minor burns and cuts,
which can occur during play. More about burns will be
discussed under the heading (
Burns What They Are and How They Should Be Treated
First Aid supplies are available at any pharmacy. The
cost is $20 or less.
Now you need the things to play with.
The torch you can easily and inexpensively make yourself
using chopsticks and bandage gauze. (See: the section under
Chopsticks are available at Fred Meyer House Wares Dept. for
a cost of $2.00 for twenty chopsticks. Get wooden ones not
plastic. They carry both kinds. Johnson & Johnson bandage
gauze is available at any pharmacy or grocery store for about
$2.50 per roll. One roll will make three torches.
You will need alcohol.
The only alcohol to use for fire play is 70% Isopropyl
(There is a further discussion in the section on
). Alcohol is available at any pharmacy or grocery store.
The cost is under $1.00 per pint. It is also available
in quart size.
A lot of fire players in this area use a 20 oz steaming pitcher,
normally used for making lattes, to hold the alcohol for play.
It is good for this purpose because it is stable and made of
stainless steel. Steaming pitchers are available at shops
selling latte and espresso supplies, or at restaurant equipment
wholesalers. The cost is from $10-15.
Any candle and candleholder will do as long as the candleholder
has a sufficiently sized base to maintain the candle in a stable
position. For candles, I use survival candles. They are a little
bigger, but store easily in the toy bag and last longer than tapers.
Survival candles are available at any sporting goods store. Cost
is under $2.00 per package.
If you intend to do
in your play you will need a spray bottle. An 8oz.
bottle is a good size because it fits well into a
toy bag. The best type of bottle to use is one that
has only 3 settings, closed, stream and wide spray,
rather than one that has a fully adjustable spray. You
can find these bottles at Rite Aide in the ladies makeup
section for about $4.00.
If you decide not to purchase a table or TV stand the cost to
'~ become a safe fire player is around $50.
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I wanted to comment briefly about fuels. As was stated several
times throughout this manual the
only tried, tested, and universally used fuel for torch type
fire play is 70% isopropyl RUBBING ALCOHOL.
Sometimes when you go to a pharmacy there will be three
different types of alcohol on the shelf. There may be on
the same shelf, 70% ethyl alcohol, or 90% Isopropyl RUBBING
ALCOHOL as well as 70% isopropyl RUBBING ALCOHOL. Even reading
this you may find it a little confusing, because the names and
percentages are so similar. The labels on the bottles look very
much alike when you see them, and if you feel rushed when you
are purchasing alcohol you can easily pick up the wrong type
Read the label and make sure you are getting what you want.
Now you are probably wondering, why can't I use the Ethyl
alcohol if its 70%, or why can't I use the 90% rubbing alcohol,
after all it is rubbing alcohol?
Ethyl alcohol is the same type of alcohol that is used in
alcoholic beverages. While you are doing fire play you are
breathing the alcohol vapors, the alcohol is heated which
makes the molecules in the alcohol more active and more
readily absorbed by the body through the mucous membranes.
Simply stated fire playing with ethyl alcohol will make you
drunk while you are playing.
Well what about 90% rubbing alcohol you ask? That should
really be intense for the sub. Therein lays the problem with
90% rubbing alcohol. It does burn hotter, to hot for the human
body. The flame is harder to see and harder to control.
There is another concern I have when I teach fire play to
others. As they gain some experience with it and confidence
in their play they tend to want to experiment. The whole
lifestyle is built around pushing limits of both sub and
Dom, experimenting and trying new ways of doing things.
I've done a lot of experimenting with fire play, but the
one thing I've never done is experiment with different kinds
of fuel on a living human body. However, I have researched
the possibility of using different fuels.
Potentially there are a number of different fuels available.
Anything which is flammable could be considered a fuel: white
gas, Coleman fuel; kerosene, lamp oil, acetone, paint thinner,
and denatured alcohol to name a few.
White gas and Coleman fuel are essentially the same thing.
Both burns in the same manner which alcohol burns. All three
consume lots of oxygen as the burn which is why it is easy to
smother or blowout a small alcohol flame. It also makes them
an easy fuels to ignite. Like alcohol they burn clean. The
problem with using them is that they burn at about the same
temperature as pure alcohol which is way too hot for the human
body to tolerate for even a short period of time.
Kerosene and lamp oil are very similar in their makeup. Both
burns at a lower temperature than alcohol, white gas or Coleman
fuel. Kerosene and lamp oil are harder to ignite and neither burn
clean. The flame tends to smoke and they put out a strong odor
while burning. The flame doesn't consume as much oxygen as white
gas or alcohol, and it is harder to put out. Another drawback is
that kerosene and lamp oil leave an oily film on both the surface
being touched and the torch.
Both acetone and paint thinner evaporate very quickly. Both have
very strong odors, and the fumes from them will not only make you
high, but both you and the sub risk the chance of passing out it
you were to attempt to use either as a fuel for fire play.
Denatured alcohol is 100% alcohol. In industry it is used as a
cleaning solvent. It is primarily ethyl alcohol 85%, which has
been rendered undrinkable by adding 15% methyl alcohol, which
is wood alcohol. The flame is too hot for the human body to endure,
and breathing the fumes could possibly give you vision problems. The
vision problems I've not tested, but I do know consuming wood
alcohol can cause blindness.
It is hoped that this discussion has dissuaded you from
trying to experiment with other fuels. Stick to 70% isopropyl
Rubbing Alcohol and you won't get into trouble with fuel.
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The torch for fire play is perhaps the main piece of
equipment you will need. Torches can be made in a number
of different ways, but basically all are made from an absorbent
material wrapped around the end of a handle of some sort and secured.
In different areas of the country, fire players describe
different ways to make a torch. One will tell you to use a
1/4 inch diameter wooden dowel about 14 inches long for the
handle, then fold a 4 X 4 bandage in half and filled it with
cotton balls and wrap that on one end of the handle and tie it
there. This makes a rather large tip and it does hold an abundance
of alcohol, perhaps more than a beginning fire player can control.
In addition to wooden dowels, chop sticks can be used for torch
handles, and 2 inch wide bandage gauze wrapped around the end
of the handle can be used for the absorbent tip. Wooden handles
will burn through after a time. Some fire players, and I among
them, treat the handle with boiled linseed oil. It won't prevent
the handle from burning through, but they last somewhat longer
than the untreated ones. One fire player I know uses glass stirring
rods for his torch handles. Recently I've begun experimenting with
using a cheap barbecue fork for a torch handle. I cut the tines
off the fork, which leaves a wooden handle and about a 7 inch
long metal rod sticking out of the handle. I wrap the gauze around
the end of the metal part. Those torches do not burn through.
The critical part of fashioning a torch is that the absorbent tip
remain on the torch while you are playing. On two occasions I've
experienced tips coming off the torch while playing. It happened
once while I was using a torch make by another person. It happened
to be the glass handle torch and the tip was glued on. The alcohol
dissolved the glue and allowed the tip to slide off the handle.
The second time it happened was with a torch I had made using a
wooden dowel and again using glue to secure the tip. Both times
a serious incident could have happened, and I was lucky that it
Glue will dissolve in alcohol. Do not use it to attach a torch tip.
When using a wooden handle for afire play torch the best way
to make sure the absorbent tip will stay securely attached to
the handle is to rough up the area of the handle where the gauze
is wrapped. Cut it with a knife so small pieces of wood are raised
up. It really doesn't take much to hold the gauze in place.
If you choose to use a barbecue fork to fashion a fire play
torch, run a threading die down the rod about an inch or so
and that will hold the gauze, and keep it from sliding off
Contaminants in the absorbent tip will create a hotter flame.
After use, I air dry my torches, but occasionally I would get
one or two which to the submissive seemed to be burning hotter.
When I unwrapped the gauze I found a blackish looking substance
inside. I suspect that it was a fungus growth of some type, and
immediately discarded the affected torches. If you fashion a torch
from a barbecue fork, you should be aware that the metal rod is
usually mild steel which has been chrome plated. Threading the rod
breaks the chrome plating, exposing the mild steel. Alcohol is 30%
water, and the threaded part can rust and contaminate the gauze tip.
Consequently these torches require higher maintenance than other
types of torches.
I've found that coating the threaded area with a light oil
helps retard the rusting and it doesn't affect the heat of the
flame. Also unwrapping the gauze from the handle and allowing
it to dry helps prevent the rust form forming. Currently I am
working on developing a torch using a stainless steel rod
because I do like the idea of a lifetime torch.
When you are finished wrapping the gauze around the handle,
the ends must be tied off securely. Some people split the end
lengthwise and tie it off. The method I prefer is to sew the end
of the wrapping with needle and thread. The important thing is
that there cannot be any frayed or exposed ends in your wrap.
Today it is almost impossible to find 100% cotton bandage gauze.
What is found now in the pharmacy is a polyester/rayon blend bandage
gauze. Loose or frayed ends on your torch, will melt and cannot only
burn the submissive, but can stick to the skin as well. Keeping the
ends tight will prevent this from happening.
In summation about torches, the cheapest, easiest to maintain, and
one of the most reliable torches for anyone just beginning to learn
fire play is one which is made from chopsticks and 2 inch wide bandage
gauze. They also serve the experienced fire player well too.
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THE BASIC RULES FOR FIRE PLAY
There are a few basic rules which should be followed for all
types of fire play:
Never play while under the influence of drugs
Never play when you are tired.
Never try doing a routine that you have not practiced
Check your torches for loose tips and nearly burned
Make sure all flammable material you do not intend to use
is stored safely away from the play area. Make sure all
alcohol containers are securely capped.
Make sure your play set-up is neat and uncluttered.
In public play make sure that the audience is a safe
distance away before attempting to do fire balls.
Make sure that fire balls will not touch any flammable
material, such as draperies, blankets, paper, etc.
The sub and her/his welfare is always your most important
consideration, and warrants your greatest attention.
Play safely, be safe, and always have fun with the play.
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HOW TO DO FIRE PLAY
In this section the actual procedure for doing fire play will
be described. Everything from the warm up to aftercare will be
covered. Also topics like skin texture, land mines, and hot spots
will be talked about.
You as a Dominant may feel that you want to learn fire
play to play with your current submissive, and that is the
only person you will ever do fire play with. The odds are,
however, that you will do fire play with any number of partners.
There are a couple of reasons for it. Relationships within
the lifestyle, generally don't have a history of being extremely
long term. Another factor is, that at some point a submissive
will see you doing fire play and be drawn to try it and ask you
to do it with them. The reason the manual goes into some depth in
some areas is to make you the player aware different conditions
exist with different submissives.
You the reader may have done some research into fire play
before reading this manual and taking the accompanying
workshop. What you have read may be slightly different than
what is being presented here. Some of these people talking about
fire play would have you believe that their way is the only way
to do it. Keep in mind as you read this manual and go through
the workshop, that what others may say about how it should be
done is only a technique they have learned. There are many
techniques for laying the alcohol and igniting it, many
different ways to do it, but it is still only a technique.
What is described in this manual and demonstrated in the
workshop is one technique. It's the technique this author
predominately uses to this day. The author likes this
technique for its simplicity .It only requires two motions,
that of laying the alcohol and flame on the skin and brushing
it away. It is easy for the novice to learn, fits well with
the experienced fire player.
Before beginning play everything you intend to use
should be laid out in an orderly fashion, so each thing
is easy to get to without knocking over something else.
Also check your torches making sure the tips are secure,
and the handles are not nearly burned through. You don't
want any surprises while you are playing, like a torch coming
apart, or a flaming candle getting knocked to the floor or your
alcohol container getting spilled
With that said, let's cut to the chase.
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The Warm Up
As with most other forms of play we do, whether it be flogging,
caning, single tail, etc., fire play requires a warm up period.
The warm up is needed for two reasons. First is to help the
submissive relax. The second is to get the submissive's endorphins
To begin with the submissive should be laying on their stomach.
There are several things you can do during the warm up period.
You can give the submissive a light massage, or just lightly
stroke the submissive's body. It's the touch of the Dominant's
hands that's important for the submissive. If the submissive is
new to fire play, they may feel some apprehension even a sense
of fear about trying it. Also speak softly to the submissive,
encouraging her to relax. A soft voice and gentle hands are
important keys to helping the submissive to relax.
A technique the author uses during this warm up period is
to lightly tap Along each side of the submissive's spine with
the ends of the fingers as some do to prepare the submissive
for caning. The gentle caressing and the light tapping of the
fingers help the submissive to relax and start the endorphins
A spanking of some sort is also helpful in getting endorphins
flowing. You can use your hand, some sort of slapper, or even
a faggot bundle if you have one. The author uses all three during
warm up. We've talked about endorphins, but what are they and why
are they important for us. Simply stated, endorphins are chemicals
produced in the body under certain circumstances. Both pain and
pleasure sensations can produce them. In one sense they act as
pain inhibitor because they allow the submissive to withstand
more intensity in play. In another sense create a sense of
euphoria in the submissive. They become the submissive's pathway
into sub space.
Take your time with the warm up. Don't rush it. If you, the
Dominant, are feeling rushed or excited or apprehensive in any
way, what you are feeling inside can be transmitted to the
submissive though your fingers and hands and create a sense
of apprehension inside her.
Background music for the session or scene is important. Music
is a mood setter, so it should be something the submissive likes
as well as something you feel that you can play to.
In a public scene such as a club or play party, you probably
won't be able to control all the outside influences. There are
usually the sounds of others playing, people talking, or you
may not be able to tolerate the music being play. Going in this
all adds up to potentially a less than satisfying scene. A
suggestion is to bring a portable CD player with you equipped
with headphones so the background noise is muted.
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Where To Start
In my workshops I teach people to practice with the torch on an
inanimate object like a counter top, table top or a shelf before
they ever try to apply fire to another individual. The feeling
is that if they can get good runs on something like a counter top
without making it hot to the touch they are almost ready to try
it on a human. When the novice begins playing for real, it should
be under the guidance and watchful eye of a very experienced fire
player just so he is there if something should go wrong.
Play should begin on the back side of the human body. The back
has afar greater tolerance for fire than does the front. Also
the front of the human body, especially the female body has many
cracks and crevasses into which alcohol can pool and the player
not be aware it has happened until it is too late. Front play
has other considerations as well, which will be discussed later.
For the novice fire players I recommend that they stick to the
back side of the body until they have gotten a lot of experience
with fire play.
Even on the back side of the human body, certain areas have
greater tolerance for fire than others. The bottoms of the
feet have the greatest tolerance, followed by the buttocks,
the backs of the legs, the small of the back and the upper
back in that order.
Although the bottoms of the feet have the greatest tolerance
for fire, they are not a good place to begin, and should never
be done with a dripping wet torch. Alcohol can run between the
submissive's toes and ignite. It is a place where it is difficult
to put the fire out.
A point to always keep in mind: alcohol always runs down, fire
always runs up.
Alcohol will pool in low areas and if you are not aware of its
presence it can be accidentally ignited. That condition is a
disaster waiting to happen.
This author has found it a good idea to draw the torch partly
out of the alcohol cup and press it against the inside of the
cup to wring out a little of the alcohol before lighting the
torch. This reduces the risk of flaming alcohol accidentally
dripping onto the floor or the fire play table or the submissive.
It's just one less thing for the player and especially the beginning
fire player to worry about.
The first touch of the torch against the skin should be on
the buttocks area. It should be followed by a quick brush of
the hand to smother the flame on the submissive's skin. When
the torch is not being applied to the skin it should be held
up and away from your face as well as the submissive's body.
Fire play is best done in a dimly lit room. In bright
light the flame on the skin is nearly invisible. In dim
light it is a blue flame. However, in a dimly lit room
the torch light is bright enough that it may leave you
partially blinded for a moment or two if you look directly
into the flame, so it is best to hold it away from your
face and eyes when you are not using it.
Keep your free hand in contact with the submissive. It
gives the submissive a sense of being grounded and is
reassuring. Move your free hand around gently caressing
the skin. It is also good to rub the place where you intend
to put the torch next before touching the skin with it. This
gives the submissive a moment to prepare before the flame
There is another reason for keeping the hand in contact
with the submissive and moving it around while you are not
applying the torch. You can feel hot spots on the skin.
There are two reasons for hot spots to occur. One, the
primary reason, is that you have played a little too long
in that area. The second reason has to do with the body's
physiology. The body is both a conductor and a resistor.
As it will conduct electricity it will also conduct heat,
and the same is true with its resistance. Some areas of the
skin have a higher resistance than other areas of the skin.
The higher the resistance the quicker a hot spot will occur.
Hot spots or warmer areas of the skin indicate a pre-burn
condition and should be avoided for a time. If the skin is
turning pinkish or reddening it indicates a first degree burn
and that area should be avoided as well.
As you work the torch, use short sure motions. Don't work
an area larger than you know you can control. Wipe the torch
across the skin, followed by the other hand to brush away the
flame. Even if there is no noticeable flame on the skin it is
a good idea to follow the torches path with your hand. Doing
this instills a sense of complete motion in the submissive's
mind and doesn't leave her/him hanging.
Don't concentrate on one place, move the torch around the
body so hot spots and burns are not created. You can work
the buttocks, the legs, backs and sides, the bottoms of the
feet, the lower and upper back.
A word of caution, make sure that the submissive's hair is
tucked out of the way so it can't be sent on fire. Submissive's
with singed off hair don't look good, and the smell of burning
hair is a horrendous odor.
When a torch is too dry to lay the alcohol on the skin it is
time to change the torch. Blowout the torch, making sure it
is completely extinguished before putting it back into the
If the submissive begins to jump around on the table, she/he
is obviously reacting to the heat. When this happens the author,
gives her a break from the fire, by running his hands over her
body. This will help her to relax and go deeper into sub space.
It is also a good idea to do this i after every two or three
torches. This also helps to extend the session or scene time.
For me a really good session or scene will last from 30 to 45
minutes, and I have played for more than an hour in sessions.
A technique I use is to incorporate knife play into the
fire session. The blade of the knife helps cool the hot spots,
and for many submissives it is relaxing as well. However, do
not use the knife to cut or scratch the skin because when you
go back the fire the alcohol will sting.
You can move the torch in straight lines, circles, S's,
and even make designs on the skin with it, in your play
routine. The key is to develop a fluid, sure motion with
the torch, and make sure the flame on the skin is brushed
completely away. You never leave one area to play on another
area with a flame still burning on the first. It takes practice
to develop sure and smooth motions for play, so practice those
often. When I first began fire play, I would practice my hand
motions while I was watching t v or doing something else that
didn't require my hands.
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Unexpected Things Do Happen
Several things can happen during a fire scene or session that you
totally weren't expecting. Sometimes it seems like its Murphy's
law at work. If it can happen it will. We've covered many ways to
prevent unexpected events from happening, but still you should be
prepared for them when they do happen.
In my experience I've had things like the head of a flaming
torch come off the handle and roll to the submissive's side away
from me. I've had unexpected burn backs happen, and the submissive
have a panic attack on the table while we were playing.
The burn back is perhaps the most common unexpected event you
will encounter. Burn backs are good and can be impressive if
you are expecting and controlling them. When you aren't expecting
them and they happen they are a bad thing and potentially disastrous,
because when you first see it your first emotion is one of panic. We
need an explanation of the term "burn back". It is a condition
where there is a residue of wet alcohol remaining on the skin after the
flame has been brushed away. If this area is touched by the flaming
torch, the alcohol will be reignited and burn. If it's a long run,
say the length of the calf or thigh, the flame will follow the length
of the alcohol stripe and burn until it is put out again.
Pay attention for wet spots on the skin.
Unless you intend to light them, avoid them until the alcohol has
In addition to brushing away the flame. The flame is easily
blown out with a breath. It is wise
to hold a breath while you are playing.
Blowing out an unexpected burn back is the easiest and most
effective way to handle it.
Prior to beginning play you should check the heads of your torches
to make sure they are secured tightly to the handle. If you are
using a wooden handle also check to see how badly it is burned.
Wooden handles will eventually burn through, or break in a burned
area during play, allowing the head to come off the torch and roll
free. If this should happen while you are playing, locate the
burning head and get it away from the submissive's body as
quickly as possible. Knock it to the floor and step on it to put
Encountering or creating land mines such as flashbacks and
panic attacks always has the potential for happening during
fire play. Many people have had serious and bad experiences
with fire. The submissive could have been involved in a bad
wax play scene, or have been trapped in a fire, or have
lost someone close to them in a fire. Any of a number of
things could have happened previously which may trigger a
flashback or some other negative response from the submissive
while she/he is on the table. If the submissive has either a
flashback or a panic attack, or begins to hyperventilate or
exhibits any other strong negative reaction during fire play.
Stop play immediately.
The submissive will probably be in some state of sub space. The
submissive will be disoriented perhaps until she/he is able to come
out of sub space a little, but you need her/him to sit up and focus
their attention on you. Hold them by the shoulders and speak to them
in a firm commanding voice until you have their attention. Once you
are able to get their attention focused on you keep them focused
until they have settled down and are calm again.
Then it is time to begin after care. At some later time, after
they have fully recovered, it is time to communicate and find
out what was going on inside the submissive's mind while you
were playing. It could be that the submissive was challenging
a fear of fire. It could be that something hidden was triggered
inside the submissive, or any number of other things. You as
the Dominant need to know these things, so in the future you
can work the submissive through these fears and negative
Also the submissive's mind can play tricks on her/him. You
are laying fire against their skin, and if you are doing things
properly you are brushing it away before it can burn the submissive.
The submissive may react like or complain that she/he is being burned.
You need to reassure the submissive that they are not being burned.
Give them a break for awhile, stroke them and get them to relax,
then try the fire again.
Another thing which can happen during fire play is the
submissive can achieve an orgasm during the play. An inadvertent
orgasm is rare, but does occur, if you desire to see the submissive
cum, often times she will if told to do so.
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A Word About Front Play
Only experienced fire players should attempt front play.
The front of the female human body presents far more problems
for fire play than does the back side. There are curves, valleys,
little nooks and crannies into which the alcohol can seep and lay
waiting unsuspected. You always have to be aware of where the torch
is being placed, and what the alcohol is doing, pooling, running,
or just remaining as a wet strip as the flame is brushed away. This
is true whether you are playing the front or the back. Often times
as well, you will encounter body piercing. Pierced nipples, navels,
labia, and clit hoods are the most common. The problem with playing
around piercings is twofold. One the alcohol can seep into the opening
without you being aware of it, and two, the metal jewelry can be
overheated and create burns. Warming the metal a little gives the
submissive an intense experience, but again only someone who has
a lot of experience should attempt this.
With front fire play, you can work the fronts, and sides of
the legs, the tops and bottoms of the feet, the stomach, and
yes you can have flaming titties. The legs and the breasts are
the most heat tolerant. The stomach is the least heat tolerant.
If you've already done play on the back, the submissive already
will be in some depth of sub space. Front play will send her even
deeper almost immediately with the first touch of the flaming torch.
Again begin your play with the most tolerant areas. The fronts of
the legs are a good place to start, then follow through to the feet.
Doing fire play on the breasts create a potential problem. Although
the breasts are fairly heat tolerant, the nipples are more sensitive,
also the flame of the torch is close to the submissive's face. Even
with her/his eyes closed they may still sense the light from the flame.
Also they will feel the heat of the torch against their throat, chin
and face. When you lift the torch away from the skin, always hold it
up away from the body and in the direction of the submissive's feet,
not close to the face.
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Fire balls are great. In a public scene they attract a lot of
attention from people watching the scene. To create a fire ball
set the nozzle of the spray bottle to the wide spray setting.
It is a good thing to have preset the bottle and tested it before
play begins. During the session or scene the room is dimly lit,
and you may have a little difficulty setting the spray bottle
to the correct setting.
Fire balls produce a lot of light and heat. People several
feet away can feel the blast of heat, and the submissive can
feel it even more. Practice the fire ball technique before you
ever try it in either a session or a scene. Learn how big the
ball of fire is and how far it is likely to travel. The bottom
of the fire ball should be at least a foot above the submissive's
body, never spray it directly at the body, but above it. Also make
sure that anyone watching the scene is sufficiently far away that
they won't be touched by the flame.
Another thing to be aware of is little droplets of unburned
alcohol will land on the submissive as well as on the table.
This is unavoidable, and can possibly create an unexpected
situation. When you again begin to apply the torch to the
submissive's body watch closely for any effects these droplets
may have and what you expect to happen. Usually there is no
problem, but be prepared in case one develops.
To create afire ball, hold a lit torch directly in front of
you and about 2 feet above the submissive. Spray the alcohol
from the bottle directly onto the lit torch. One or two squirts
are usually very effective. If you try too many, the torch will
become thoroughly saturated, and flaming drops of alcohol can
drip onto the submissive.
Again it is wise to practice this technique before you
ever try it around a human, or use it in a session or scene.
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Can I Combine Other Play With Fire Play?
Shortly after I began playing with fire as a BDSM play, I began
experimenting with combining other play into a fire scene. I
learned that some things work and do enhance a session or a scene.
I've already indicated that I use knife play in my fire scenes and
sessions as well. My slave loves the sensation of the steel knife
blade against her skin as much as she has grown to love the fire.
Fire and knives go well together. Introducing a cold substance
like ice into the scene. I read once long ago that using ice in
a fire session or scene creates in the submissive the sense that
the sub is being branded. I've tried it and have not gotten that
type of reaction from any submissive who I've tried it with. What
I have found is that the ice melts and leaves water on the subs
skin. The water will affect the torch as it will dilute the alcohol,
and the fire runs on wet skin aren't nearly as effective as those
on dry skin. But Ice does give a good alternating hot and cold
sensation. No days rather than using ice I use a cold pack to
achieve that effect. The cold pack I use is of a type used for
treating burns. It's inexpensive, gets cold in a few seconds (about
the temperature to freeze water), and will remain cold for the
duration of a session or scene. Also it doesn't leave the skin
wet, nor is there any type of residue left on the skin.
Light caning can be used during the
as well as a paddle or other spanking toy.
In my experience wax play does not work well at all in a fire
scene. The wax lies on the skin and it is almost impossible to
get it all off in a scene. It will melt into the hot torch. Then
it acts just about like popcorn popping, throwing tiny bits of
extremely hot wax against the sub's skin. The alcohol we use in
fire play is 70% alcohol, the remaining 30% is water. The water
trapped beneath the wax on the torch turns to steam and explodes.
What about flogging and fire? I've seen light fire play introduced
into a flogging scene. Usually it is done after the flogging warm
up or before. It seems to work well, but this is fire introduced
into a predominantly flogging scene.
If you intend to do to a flogging scene and a fire scene with the
same submissive in the same evening, it is best to do the fire
scene first. Flogging sensitizes the skin, making the fire feel
hotter against the skin, and usually you will not have as satisfying
a fire scene.
A violet wand works well in afire scene. However, the techniques
for using it are more advanced that the scope of this basic fire
play manual intends to describe.
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Bruises, Stretch Marks, etc.
There will be times when you play with subs who have bruises, stretch
marks, cuts and scratches on their skin. You may wonder how this will
affect the session or scene.
Bruises which are several days old, seem to have no effect on play.
This means that the skin is not more heat sensitive in the bruised
area than on other areas of the skin. Stretch marks on the other
hand, are areas where the skin has been made thinner by the stretching
of the skin. These areas are usually more heat sensitive. Treat areas
where there are stretch marks as you would any other sensitive are.
Cuts and scratches if they are fresh, can affect the play. The
alcohol seeps into them and stings. If they are older cuts or
scratches and are scabbed over, these areas may be more sensitive
to heat, but usually will not sting from the alcohol.
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When the play is done, after care is as important for the submissive,
as it is for any other play you do. The sub will need all the attention
you normally give in after care. If you have played on a table, do not
try to have the sub get up too soon. Remember the sub is probably in
a deep level of sub space, and it may take several minutes before
she/he is able to move, so do not attempt to have them get off the
table until they are somewhat cohesive in their speech. Also
their balance may be impaired so they could slip and fall as
they are trying to get off the table or try to walk.
The sub needs to be covered completely with a blanket to keep
from getting chilled. There should also be water or some liquid
for the submissive, as she/he may be dehydrated from the
play. While the sub is lying on the table, talk to them,
stroke their hair and praise them. After a period of time
ask them if they are ready to get up. If they don't feel
ready to move, don't press the issue. Even if she/he says
they are ready to get off the table, use your best judgment
about letting them get up. If their eyes are still glassy,
and their speech is slurred, I won't let them get up. It's
far better to have them lay there than to have an accident
happen. There is no set time for recovery and each sub's time
will be different. Even after the sub is off the table, she/he
will probably require additional after care.
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How Fires Start
Fire is a chemical reaction involving rapid oxidation or burning
of a fuel. It needs three elements to occur:
- Fuel can be any combustible material-solid, liquid,
or gas. Most solids and liquids become a vapor or gas
before they will burn.
- The air we breathe is about 21 percent oxygen.
Fire only needs an atmosphere of about 16
- Heat is the energy necessary to increase the
temperature of the fuel to a point where sufficient
vapors are given off for ignition to occur.
- A chain reaction can occur when the three elements of
fire are present in the proper conditions and proportions.
Fire occurs when this rapid oxidation or burning takes
Take away anyone of these factors, and the fire cannot 1 occur or
will be extinguished if it is already burning.
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How Fires Are Classified
A Ordinary combustibles or fibrous material, such as wood,
paper, cloth, rubber and some plastics.
Flammable or combustible liquids such as alcohol, gasoline,
kerosene, paint, paint thinners, and propane
Energized electrical equipment such as appliances, switches,
power boxes and tools.
Certain combustible metals, such as magnesium, titanium,
potassium, and sodium. These metals burn at high temperatures
and give off sufficient oxygen to support combustion. They
may react violently with water or other chemicals and must
be handled with care.
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How To Prevent Fires From Occurring
- Ordinary combustibles
In fire play keep the area free of combustible materials and trash.
Store away everything that is not going to be used in your session
- Flammable liquid or gasses
In fire play pour only the alcohol that you will be using.
Tightly recap the unused portion and store it safely away from
the play area, preferably in the toy bag.
As a reminder for home fire safety this is included. Don't
refuel gasoline-powered equipment in a confined space, especially
in the presence of an open flame, cigarette, furnace, or water
Don't refuel gasoline-powered equipment while it hot.
Keep flammable liquids stored in tightly closed, self closing,
spill proof containers.
Store flammable liquids away from spark producing sources.
Use flammable liquids only in well ventilated areas.
- Electrical equipment
While electrical equipment in not necessarily a part of fire play
it is sometimes used not only for fire play but in other play that
we do as well, which is why it is included in this manual.
Check your electrical equipment for worn insulation, cuts in the
wiring, and broken plugs. If any of those conditions exist correct
them before you attempt to play.
Don't misuse fuses. Never install a fuse which is rated higher
than the specific circuit. Never replace a burned fuse with a
Investigate any equipment or appliance that smells strange.
Unusual odors can be the first sign of fire.
Don't overload outlets. Outlets should never have more than
- Flammable metals
Most of us will never encounter a flammable metal fire in
our lifetimes, let alone in our play. This is included to
make you aware that this class of fire does exist.
Flammable metals such as magnesium and titanium generally
take a very hot heat source to ignite; however, once ignited
are difficult to extinguish as the burning reaction produces
sufficient oxygen to support combustion, even under water.
In some cases covering the burning metal with sand can help
contain the heat and sparks from the reaction. Class D extinguishing
agents are available (generally as a dry powder in a bucket or box)
which can be quite effective.
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When Not To Fight A Fire
Never fight a fire:
If the fire is spreading beyond the spot where it started.
If you can't fight the fire with your back to an escape exit
If the fire can block your only escape.
If you don't have adequate fire-fighting equipment
In any of these situations
DON'T FIGHT THE FIRE YOURSELF CALL FOR HELP
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How To Identify The Proper Fire Extinguisher
All ratings are shown on the extinguisher faceplate. Some
extinguishers are marked with multiple ratings such as AB, BC
ABC. These extinguishers are capable of putting out more than one
class of fire.
Class A and B
extinguishers carry a numerical rating that indicates how large
a fire an experienced person can safely put out with that
extinguishers have only a letter rating to indicate that the
extinguishing agent will not conduct electrical current. Class
C extinguishers must also carry a Class A or B rating.
extinguishers carry only a letter rating indicating their
effectiveness on certain amounts of specific metals.
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HOW TO USE A PORTABLE FIRE EXTINGUISHER
Remember the acronym, "P.A.S.S."
Pull the Pin
Aim extinguisher nozzle At the base of the flames
Squeeze trigger while holding Extinguisher upright
Sweep the extinguisher from side to side, covering the
area of the fire with the extinguishing agent.
Should your path of escape be threatened.
Should the extinguisher run out of agent
Should the extinguisher prove to be ineffective.
Should you no longer be able to fight the fire.
.....THEN LEAVE THE AREA IMMEDIATELY!
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How To Extinguish Small Fires
- Extinguish ordinary combustibles by cooling the material below
is ignition temperature and soaking the fibers to prevent reignition.
Use pressurized water, foam or multi-purpose (ABC-rated) dry chemical
DO NOT USE
carbon dioxide or ordinary (BC rated) dry chemical extinguishers on
Class A fires.
- Extinguish flammable liquids, greases or gases by moving oxygen,
preventing the vapors from reaching the ignition source or inhibiting
the chemical chain reaction. Foam, carbon dioxide ordinary (BC rated)
dry chemical, multi-purpose dry chemical, and halon extinguishers may
be extinguishers may be used on Class B fires.
- Extinguish energized electrical equipment by using an
extinguishing agent that is not capable of conducting electrical
currents. Carbon dioxide ordinary (BC rated) dry chemical,
multi-purpose dry chemical and halon fire extinguishers
may be used to fight Class C fires.
DO NOT USE
water or water extinguishers on energized electrical equipment.
- Extinguish combustible metals such as magnesium, titanium,
potassium, and sodium with dry powder extinguishing agents specially
designated for the material involve. In. most cases, they absorb
the heat from the material, cooling it below is ignition point.
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How To Inspect Your Fire Extinguisher
Know the location for the fire extinguisher.
Make sure the class of fire extinguisher is safe to use on
fires likely to occur in the immediate area.
Check the plastic seal holding the pin in the extinguisher
handle. Has the extinguisher been tampered with or used before?
Look at the gauge and feel the weight. Is the extinguisher
full? Does it need to be recharged?
Make sure the pin, nozzle and nameplate are intact.
The APPEARANCE of the fire extinguisher
ABC-rated fire extinguishers are ideal for home use and recommended
as the one to use for safety during fire play. They are also the most
common ones found in commercial buildings and probably where you work.
They are almost always
in color and have a long narrow hose or no hose (just a short
nozzle). They are very light (5 to 25 lbs total weight).
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How To Evacuate A Building
The last one out of the room should not lock the door, just
close it. Locking the door hinders the fire department's search
and rescue efforts.
Proceed to the exit.
Never use elevators under any circumstances.
Stay low to avoid smoke and toxic gasses. The best air is
close to the floor, so crawl if necessary.
If possible cover your mouth and nose with a damp cloth
to help you breathe.
If you are in a building with multiple stories, a stairway
will be your primary escape route. Most enclosed stairways
in buildings over two stories are "rated" enclosures
and will provide you a safe means of exit; don't panic descend
the stairs slowly and carefully.
Once in the stairwell proceed down to the first floor. Never
Once outside the building report either to a predetermined
area or someone in charge of rescue operations so they know
you are out, of the building.
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What To Do If Trapped In A Burning Building
If you are trying to escape afire, never open a door without
feeling it first. Use the back of your hand to prevent burning
the palm. If the door is hot try another exit. If none exists
seal the door with anything available.
If trapped look for the nearest phone and call the fire
department, giving them your exact location
If breathing is difficult, try to ventilate the room. If on
an upper floor and a window
be opened. DON'T break it out, you'll be raining glass down
on rescuers and people exiting the building.
If you can't contact the fire department by phone, wave for
attention at the window. Don't panic
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What To Do If Someone Catches Fire
If you should catch fire:
- where you are
- to the floor
-around on the floor
This will smother the flames, possibly saving your life.
If someone near you catches fire, smother the flames by grabbing
a coat, blanket or rug and wrapping them in it. That could save
them from serious burns or even death.
KNOWLEDGE - AWARENESS – PREPARATION
These are the keys to preventing and surviving fires wherever they occur
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What They Are and How They Should Be Treated
Burns are classified as first, second, and third degree according to the
depth of the burn. In the first few hours it may be difficult to assess
the depth. Burns can be caused by fire, sun, hot liquids or objects,
electrical current, or chemicals.
1st Degree Burns
Superficial; causes reddened skin as in sunburn,
or touch of an iron. It is the most common burn
during fire play.
A first degree burn is painful, but is not a major
problem even if over a large area. A doctor's
attention is seldom necessary for this type of burn.
2nd Degree Burns
Deeper than 1st degree; causes splitting of the
skin layers and blistering as in a severe sunburn
or scalding water. 2nd degree burns can occur during
These burns are painful, and if extensive, may cause
significant fluid loss.
Scarring is usually minimal and infection is usually
not a problem.
This type of burn can be treated at home if not
too extensive. (More than 20 to 30 square inches
of skin is extensive).
Any second degree burn of the face or hands should
be seen by a doctor, as these may result in cosmetic
problems or decreased function.
3rd Degree Burns
Destroys all layers of skin and extends into deeper
tissue. These are painless as the nerve endings have
been destroyed. Charring may be present (brown or black
These burns result in scarring and present frequent and
severe problems with infection and fluid loss. The more
extensive the burn the more severe the problem
All third degree burns require a doctor's evaluation
Skin grafts are often needed.
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Apply something cold immediately. (Such as ice wrapped in a towel,
a burn cold pack, cold tap water, a cold pop can, a bag of frozen
vegetables, etc.) Apply for at least five minutes and continue
until the pain is relieved or for 1 hour, which ever occurs first.
This may be reapplied if the pain reoccurs.
Aspirin may be used for pain.
Do not intentionally rupture blisters. If they do open
up, leave the overlying skin intact to act as a wet
Do not use local anesthetic creams or sprays. These may
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WHEN TO SEEK MEDICAL ATTENTION
All third degree burns
Extensive second degree burns
Second degree burns of the hands of face
Any signs of infection such as: white, yellow, or green
drainage, increased pain, increased redness, foul odor,