Figging is one of those little niceties, although probably one of the lesser known of BDSM erotic techniques. It is either something you love or you hate but which ever it is, there is potential in any new experience, so until you have tried it, dont knock it.
"Figging"or the erotic use of ginger root, can be the most interesting and enjoyable pastime once the initial preparations have been completed. The method is little known, little used outside of the BDSM lifestyle and even then, having been superseded by commercial and chemical products the basic technique could be easily lost in time and lack of use which would be a pity as there are many advantages to the use of naturally produced substances.
Not much is known about the history of figging or how it became popular, other than stories handed down of it being used during caning, in Victorian times, when it would be inserted into the anus of the "victim" to prevent the butt clenching. The reason for the insertion in itself, is unknown as many, if they were to consider it would find the vision of a tight arse most enjoyable. Now however, mention figging or the more widely used expression of "Ginger" within a lifestyle setting and the "Ooohs" and "ahhhas" will reverberate around the room.
The technique is one that does however take some forward planning (in the initial purchasing and preparation) but even that as a precursor and anticipation factor can add enjoyment to the proceedings. Sending one's sub out to the supermarket or the greengrocers to buy the ingredients for the evenings play can be most erotic, then to have them prepare those ingredients for both the Master's and sub's pleasure adds spice (no pun intended) to an evening of pleasure. Of course, it does help if both those involved are into anal play as like every aspect of the lifestyle, mutual consent is paramount if both are to enjoy the experience. If the sub for example finds this kind of play, a hard limit then the Dominant must respect that and once again, figging should be put away until such times as the limit is removed or both parties are happy to look at it again.
So let us then look at the preparation needed and how best to use this naturally produced toy, sold as a "hand" because that's what it looks like, with its protruding nodes resembling fingers. Many larger supermarket chains now sell gingers, pre-cut and packaged for ease of use in the kitchen or at the very worst, its sold ground or powdered, which is not a lot of use to those who have different ideas for its use, therefore it is recommended that as there is little benefit in ginger sold in this form, you stay away from it and make the attempt to buy a full uncut version, thus enabling, in preparation, a nice sized plug of ginger.
Once purchased, keep the ginger in a cool dry place until you are ready; let the anticipation build, watch the sub squirm every time they catch a glimpse of the hand. Seriously though, it is best used fresh unless you have time to allow it to age properly for a day or two. If you can't wait that long, then let the fun begin.
Some Dominants prefer to prepare the ginger themselves, while the sub looks on, waiting, maybe knowing what is coming next, maybe not. Others may prefer the sub to prepare the plug to the Masters requirements, while watching to ensure it is completed with precision and care: either way, the technique for preparation is as follows.
Cut a finger from the hand. Unless the chosen finger is long enough don't cut it at the joint with the hand but rather extend the cut into the hand itself giving you a longer uniform shape. It should be no less than 4 inches in length but the longer the better. Remove the outer brown skin making sure that it's all removed. Make sure that the plug is smooth, with no bumps or protrusions. Be careful not to remove too much of the flesh or narrow the finger in its main body. Take your time sculpting the finger; it will be well worth the effort if it fits snugly into the sub.
Ginger is fibrous, and may take time to prepare, it also has a distinct aroma, which in itself can be an anticipation factor, so don't rush, enjoy the preparation as part of the play.
Once satisfied with the sculpture, one last but most important cut is needed before the sub can enjoy the results of all that hard work. You now have to perform the tricky bit. About two-thirds of the ways down the sculpture, carefully carve a concavity. This will act as a retention device. Similar to a butt plug where the sphincter locks around the tapered portion of the plug, the concavity will do the same thing. Make the ring no more than a half inch wide. Remember; do not taper the finger all the way down to the end. You want full circumference of the finger two-thirds of the way down, a half-inch retention ring and then full circumference continuing down to the end of the finger. Do not carve out too much however, as this will weaken the finger and increase the possibility of breaking while in the sub. You don't need a very deep ring for retention.
Now having spent this time in preparation and anticipation, it is best if the sub is laid, face down, bound or not, with a pillow underneath to lift the buttocks into a position which makes it easy to insert the plug into the anus. Unlike a butt plug or your own finger you do not need lube when using a ginger plug; in fact use of these will diminish the effects of the ginger. Instead use cool water to keep the root moist as you insert it slowly into the anus. Take your time and be gentle, the finger will slide in with care. Continue to push it in until the subs anus closes around it and wait; the Doms' task is finished, now comes the interesting part to watch or enjoy depending which end you are at.
For the Dominant, the knowledge that he is in control, he can remove the plug and insist that if the sub wishes to continue the experience they beg for more, he can just sit back and take pleasure in the effects his sub is experiencing, he could also add to the seesion by using other methods of pleasure or pain to stimulate his sub while they attempt to go with the effects that are building up slowly.
For the sub, the sensations are aided by the mental side of figging, all the aspects put together, the anticipation, the plugging, the obvious effects the ginger itself may be having, even the humiliation side of being exposed, bound etc are all part of the play session.
One of the attributes of ginger is that of the "build up" effect. It starts as a gentle warming, then as the ginger juice seeps into the subs flesh the sensation of burning builds to a crescendo. Depending upon how resilient your sub is, or how potent the ginger is, the reaction will be different from sub to sub, as they feel the sensation deep inside them. Of course there is also the mental aspect of being plugged, at the Masters mercy, tied, bound, exposed as they lay there while their Dom looks on at the spectacle of a writhing sub as the effects build.
Expect different reactions with each individual sub; the effects are quite noticeable and are a pleasant forerunner to further play. To increase the burning effect ordering the sub to clench the butt muscles gives a dramatic increase in the already obvious pleasure-pain that the sub is enjoying. These effects will last some 20 minutes and as the potency wears off, the sensation decreases dramatically, as it will if the plug is removed from the sub if it is found that the experience is not being enjoyed.
As with any natural produce, no matter how much of an effect you wish to generate in any given session, there is no risk of any harmful or lasting damage to your sub in the use of ginger and as stated, what effects are generated are short lived. Simply remove the plug once the potency declines and continue with other teases or toys to enhance your session.
Ginger can be used on the clit, in thin slices together with a plug or as a stand alone technique or if you wish to have your sub begging for release, use it back, front and clit and wait for the fireworks.
For the male sub, ginger has a use too. Place a slice, approx. 1/8 to ¼ inch wide and an inch long, smoothed, into the urethra of the cock, leaving enough outside to allow for removal. The effects will be quite dramatic and almost immediate as the sub reacts to the burning sensation. If it gets too much, the slice can be removed for a while and replaced, removed, replaced until the effects finally subside, dependant on how much the Domme wishes to tease the sub.
For greater effect, be patient; stored ginger tends to loose its zap. However if you have a little left over from this session, put it in a sealed plastic bag and store it in the fridge for a few days. Check it occasionally and if moisture has formed inside the bag and a little mould is showing on the root, it's looking good. Don't worry about this mould; once peeled and prepared as before, watch out as with age comes potency and this time the sub will most definitely know who is in control. Once you insert the plug, it won't be them. Note: Any leftover root should now be discarded and it's time to send sub to the shops again.
A couple of cautionary points to note here: some people can be allergic to ginger, if this is the case, then obviously this in not something that a Master and sub will be able to enjoy. It's likely that most who are will know in advance anyway. Very few are.
If by some aggressive wriggling or too tight a clenching of those butt muscles the sub manages to break the finger while it is still inserted and you cannot retrieve it, don't panic, let nature take its course and as the old saying goes, "what goes up, must come down will most definitely apply in this case.
Enjoy the experience, play safe.
D/s seekers 2003