7 Best Bondage Ropes For Shibari and BDSM

profile image   Rain Egan
Are you looking for the best types of bondage rope out there to give your sub the best treatment? In this review, I’ve rounded up the 7 best bondage ropes for BDSM activities like Shibari. So, whether you want to delve into the world of bondage rope, or if you’re just curiously passing through to see how it works, you welcome to keep reading all about it!
1 Test Winner

Doc Johnson Japanese-Style Bondage Rope 10 Meter

  Doc Johnson Bondage Rope

  • Prefer a light, soft texture
  • Want to use it for bedroom bondage
  • Prefer a thick rope
  • Are a beginner

Doc Johnson Bondage Rope

  • Want to use it for suspension
  • Are tall and want a full-body harness
  • Prefer the ends to be sealed

With 10 meters (393 inches) of rope, Doc Johnson’s Japanese-Style Bondage Rope enables you to perfect elaborate knots and mind-blowing bondage positions. The super-soft cotton reduces chafing and is woven to lay flat against the skin for easy and comfortable restraint no matter how long the play session. The best part? It’s as strong as it is soft, and will last you multiple sessions without digging into the wrists and other joints.

  • Soft
  • Easy to knot
  • Strong
  • Easy to clean

  • Frays easily
  • Bad for suspension
  • Limited colour choice
Doc Johnson Bondage Rope
Length393 inches
MaterialsCotton

This particular bondage rope has been selected as our Test Winner today because it is a great rope for both beginners and experienced rope users. It’s a great price for a decent quality, lays flat with ease, and is incredibly soft. Cotton ropes tend to be hit or miss when it comes to stretching, but this one is great for knot-tying and easy to undo. Note that the ends will fray as they aren’t sealed or protected –  and if you want something for suspension play, we would strongly recommend you stay away from cotton, as it’s designed more for binding and creating harnesses.

2 Runner Up

Oxy Rainbow Silk Kinbaku Bondage Rope

 Oxy Rainbow Silk Kinbaku Rope

  • Are new to rope tying and looking for an easy start
  • Prefer decorative tying over suspension purposes
  • Need a practice bondage rope

Oxy Rainbow Silk Kinbaku Rope

  • Intend to use the rope for suspension
  • Require firm, unmovable knots
  • Prefer the friction of coarser ropes

The Oxy Rainbow Silk Kinbaku Bondage Rope is a soft bondage rope made from bamboo silk, featuring a variegated rainbow color. It’s designed primarily for decorative tying rather than suspension, with a focus on aesthetics and comfort.

  • Beautiful, vibrant colors
  • Soft texture, comfortable for the skin
  • Lightweight and easy to use

  • Color variations can be distracting during tying
  • Knots at the ends may cause issues
  • Slight stretch in the rope
Oxy Rainbow Silk Kinbaku Rope
Length(26.25 feet) 315 inches
Diameter0.24 inches
MaterialsBamboo silk
Storage Bag IncludedNo
Colors AvailableRainbow and solid colors

In conclusion, the Oxy Rainbow Silk Kinbaku Bondage Rope is an excellent choice for beginners or those interested in decorative bondage. Its beautiful colors and soft texture make it aesthetically pleasing and comfortable against the skin. However, its slight stretch and the distraction caused by the color variations might be a concern for more advanced users or those looking for functional bondage purposes like suspension. This rope is ideal for those who value aesthetics in their rope play and are looking for an affordable, quality option for practice and light play.

3 Cheapest

Bondage Boutique Soft Bondage Rope

 Bondage Boutique Soft Rope

  • Are looking for an affordable rope
  • Want a beginner-focused bondage option
  • Need versatility

Bondage Boutique Soft Rope

  • Want something fast to put in place

Sometimes fantasy is better than reality. When you’re a beginner, the last thing you want is to spend a lot of money on something you aren’t sure will be your style. This rope from Bondage Boutique is the perfect option for newcomers that want to experiment but not invest in anything too pricey. It doesn’t have enough length to create full-body harnesses at only five meters, but it is perfect for simple wrist and ankle bonds. The matte finish is made from high-quality, ultra-soft cotton and keeps knots from slipping. That allows you to practice different knot types without worrying about wasting any rope.

  • Very affordable
  • Versatile for different knot styles
  • High-quality materials

  • Requires you to learn your knots
Bondage Boutique Soft Rope
Length196 inches
MaterialsCotton
TextureVery soft and smooth

Having the freedom to play around without worrying about damaging an expensive product is welcome for anyone, especially the BDSM-curious. Bondage Boutique is always ready to provide excellent products for tentative explorers and veteran kinksters alike, and they crafted the perfect rope for the task. The cost is the biggest feature for guilt-free, worry-free playtime on a budget.

4 Beginner

KINK Bind & Tie Initiation Kit

 KINK Bind & Tie Initiation Kit

  • Want to explore Shibari
  • Love natural ropes
  • Want to make bigger rope projects
  • Want a full kit with scissors

KINK Bind & Tie Initiation Kit

  • Are allergic to hemp
  • Prefer synthetic ropes
  • Get annoyed by shedding fibers

This all-in-one KINK Bind & Tie Initiation Kit is great for beginners who are eager to get started on their bondage rope journey and perhaps already have some simple knots they want to try out! Explore unlimited options with the range of rope lengths included, and discover a whole new world of kink! The kit includes 3 different ropes, two 30 ft topes and one 50 ft rope, one pair of safety scissors, and a black drawstring pouch for storage and transportation. Check out our round-up of other bondage kits on the link!

  • Soft but strong rope
  • Enough rope for larger projects
  • Safety shears included
  • Comes with a storage bag
  • Free access to rope school

  • Pricey
  • Too small
  • Rope sheds quite a bit
  • Pricey
KINK Bind & Tie Initiation Kit
Length1 x 600 inches, 2 x 360 inches
Diameter6 mm/ 0.23 inches
MaterialsHemp
Storage Bag IncludedYes

This inclusive KINK Bind & Tie Initiation Kit is a great beginner-friendly addition to your bondage collection! While the price point is higher than other on this list, it includes a few good pieces of rope that offer a versatile use that is suitable for a beginner level user. Once again, the width of the ropes make them unsuitable for suspension – and it’s worth noting that the 100% natural hemp material is a bit harder to clean than some synthetic materials as it is not machine washable. But this material really does give you that classic shibari style look and feel!

5 Pre-Tied

Bondage Boutique Soft Bondage Rope Restraints

  Bondage Boutique Bondage Rope Restraints

  • Or your partner have difficulty with knots
  • Want something pre-tied
  • Have fine motor function problems
  • Are a beginner

Bondage Boutique Bondage Rope Restraints

  • Want a long rope
  • Prefer to tie your own knots

Not a fan of knots? Try this pre-tied set from Lovehoney’s Bondage Boutique range. A sturdy O-ring at the end of each restraint can be looped around itself and attached to your bed (or anywhere else you would like). Use all 4 to fully restrain your sub, leaving you free to tease and punish them. Adjust the rope restraints with ease using the simple slip knot feature. This multi position rope restraint set allows for versatile restraint that’s comfortable enough to hold limbs for prolonged periods.

  • Comfortable
  • Strong
  • Soft
  • Durable

  • Doesn't tie tightly
  • Excessively long
  • Single color option
Bondage Boutique Bondage Rope Restraints
Length53 inches
AdjustableYes
MaterialsNylon

This kit is perfect for those who prefer light bondage and aren’t interested in complex shibari knots. While it doesn’t give you the most versatility, the cuffs are very easily adjustable and can be tailored to suit your specific needs, depending on the type of restraint you want. The nylon material may be a bit shiny and slippery, but ultimately, since it won’t be used for knot work, that’s not as big of an issue as it would be in a standard rope.

6 Soft

NS Novelties Logo Bondage Couture Rope

 NS Novelties Bondage Couture Rope

  • Are a bondage beginner
  • Are on a budget
  • Want an easy to care for rope
  • Enjoy silky textures

NS Novelties Bondage Couture Rope

  • Want to use it for suspension
  • Prefer natural materials

What could be better than Bondage Couture? This 25 foot (300 inches) long rope is secure, soft, and super stylish. Tie your submissive up in blue, gold, or combine the two for stunning decorative bondage. The rope is fused at each end with nickel-free hardware to prevent fraying and increase durability, so you can engage in rough play with the confidence that your rope won’t give out on you!

  • Secure
  • Stylish
  • Budget-friendly
  • Easy to knot

  • Limited color options
  • Not suitable for suspension
NS Novelties Bondage Couture Rope
Length300 inches
MaterialsPolyester fiber

Overall, the Bondage Couture Rope is great for bondage beginners, as it’s budget-friendly while still being strong and secure. Polyester is also a great synthetic material for beginners, as it’s easy to knot and undo and won’t slip out of your hands like other synthetic materials. It’s still silky, though, so if you prefer a non-shiny material, you might want to look at cotton or more natural fibers. It is also not recommended for suspension play due to the synthetic material.

7 Long

Temptasia Bondage Rope 32 Feet By Blush Novelties

 Temptasia Bondage Rope By Blush Novelties

  • Enjoy cotton material
  • Want something super lightweight
  • Prefer a smooth texture
  • Want a long rope

Temptasia Bondage Rope By Blush Novelties

  • Want a suspension rope
  • Prefer secured ends

Wrap your sub in soft to the touch, sensual Temptasia Bondage Rope. Cotton rope is traditionally associated with Japanese Shibari ropes and will hold your knots tightly and securely. Pair with Bondage Safety Scissors to ensure you are always ready to care for your bound partner. To clean, slip your rope in a lingerie bag to keep it from getting tangled, and machine wash with similar colors. Use cold water and air dry to avoid shrinking!

  • Lightweight
  • Easy to care for
  • Good length
  • Smooth

  • Not suitable for suspension
  • Frays easily
Temptasia Bondage Rope By Blush Novelties
Length384 inches
MaterialsCotton

The Temptasia Bondage Rope is super long and super soft, at a very good price point for cotton rope. It also holds knots very well, given the natural stretch that cotton has and the naturally ribbed texture. Again, not suitable for suspension, but wonderful for complex and decorative rope tying! The length is also great for full body harnesses, as there’s plenty to work with.

Conductive Bondage Rope for Electrifying Bondage!

Dive into the world of conductive rope for some seriously shocking results!

30 foot Conductive Rope

 30 foot Conductive Rope - Conductive Bondage Rope for Electrifying Bondage!
Combine the worlds of shock play and bondage with this 30-foot conductive rope. This product is super lightweight and soft, so much so that your sub may forget they’re wearing it, and is great for providing a wider distribution of shocks! This supple rope is ideal for decorative bondage, using in your predicament bondage scenes, or just as a great way to show off your Shibari skills. Pair with a violet wand and watch sparks fly.

Safety Scissors: The Essential Companion to Bondage Rope

These safety scissors are NOT for kids.

Safety Scissors

 Safety Scissors - Safety Scissors: The Essential Companion to Bondage Rope
Safety first! These scissors are a must-have for any bondage rope lovers. They’re sharp, easy to use, and this pair from Stockroom is also super sleek. Rope, tape, blindfolds, clothing, bandages, and more can be effortlessly sliced through with the amazing cutting power of these scissors, making them useful before, during, and after play. They also have a rounded leading edge with a flat safety guide, which keeps comfort in mind for cuts made near the skin,

Bondage Rope Alternatives

Not ready for the knot life? We’ve got you! Check out our round-up of bondage tape here, too!

Lovehoney Purple Bondage Tape

 Lovehoney Purple Bondage Tape  - Bondage Rope Alternatives
This isn’t your average tape. Self-adhesive and super-versatile, create any restraint or outfit you desire, without surprise hair removal. Made from durable PVC and designed so that it only sticks to itself, this tape is great for crafting your own custom restraints, from handcuffs and hog ties, to blindfolds or even body harnesses. With no glue involved, it won’t damage furniture, clothing, or pull on your skin like normal tape, but it’ll provide you with the same strength and versatility you’d expect from duct tape.

Scandal Lovers Tape by CalExotics

Scandal Lovers Tape by CalExotics - Bondage Rope Alternatives
This PVC tape from CalExotics is great for those who want quality without breaking the bank! With 15 m of tape to experiment with, and completely reusable, you can live out all of your bondage desires with peace of mind. Plus, if you find aesthetics important, the shiny leather-look of this tape will transport you into a BDSM dream.

How to Tie Bondage Rope

Put your bondage ropes to the test with these four exciting ways to tie!

Single Column Tie

Most ties start with a single column tie. A single column tie is a cuff that will not tighten when you pull on the tail, making it a safe and secure first step.

Square Knot

The square knot, or reef knot, is a primarily decorative knot when it comes to bondage. It’s ideal for tying two pieces of rope together to create one long rope, as the two twists create quite a bit of friction between each length when weight is applied.

Double Coin Knot

The double coin knot is a beautiful decorative knot that it presents potential loops on each corner where ropes can pass through, making it ideal as a central knot for an unlimited variety of rope harnesses. It’s also a flat knot that is comfortable to wear and lie upon!

Prusik Head Knot

The Prusik head, or Prusik shackle knot is, as you may have guessed, great for shackling, and forms the basis of many great handcuff knots. Master this one, and you’ll be able to restrain your sub comfortably and securely – as it tightens when struggled against but remains loose when relaxed.

Which Materials are Best for Bondage Rope?

When it comes to bondage rope, like so many sex toys, the best material depends on your planned use. Here’s a rundown of some of the most common bondage rope materials and their best uses!

Quick guide

  • Cotton — cheap, soft, not for suspension, difficult to untie, can tighten over time due to natural stretch of material
  • Hemp – expensive, great for suspension, durable, can develop rot
  • Jute – expensive, low elasticity, great for complex knots and wont tangle, not for suspension as light, needs to be treated and conditioned before use
  • Bamboo – silky and light, good for bedroom, not recommended for suspension and wont leave marks
  • Synthetic – nylon ( strong, soft, stretchy), polyester (not as soft, but feels more secure)

Synthetic vs Natural Materials

When it comes to choosing between natural and synthetic rope, it really boils down to the kind of bondage you plan to partake in; are you big into suspension or do you prefer light bondage in the bedroom? For a natural rope that can handle suspension, hemp is a great option; for a synthetic rope that can handle suspension, try polyester. For a natural rope that will please during light bedroom bondage, try cotton or jute; for a synthetic rope that delivers during light play, try nylon.

Cotton

Let’s start simple. Cotton ropes are great if you’re on a budget, and they’re super customizable! It’s super soft and knots easily, but it may (k)not be the best for suspension. Cotton ropes can also be difficult to untie, and depending on the brand, they may tighten over time due to the natural stretch of the material.

Hemp

Hemp bondage rope, on the other hand, is GREAT for suspending, as it’s super secure and durable. An 8 mm hemp rope size is ideal for critical support lines, but for other ropes, you can use the easier to maneuver 6 mm hemp rope. The downside to hemp rope is that pre-treated/conditioned rope can be quite expensive, and it’s not usable for bondage pre-treatment. It can also be difficult to clean, and develop rot/mildew if not dried correctly.

Jute

Enter jute. Jute is a hemp-like material that is springy and light compared to hemp. It has very low elasticity, so it’s great for complex knots as it won’t tangle! There’s also a lesser chance of rope burn compared to other materials, but it still leaves great rope marks. Once again, though, it must be treated and conditioned before use, and pre-treated jute can get quite expensive. As it’s lighter than hemp, it’s also not recommended for suspension.

Bamboo

Bamboo ropes are probably the lightest out there, so they’re great for bedroom bondage, and feel super silky on the skin. It won’t leave the best rope marks, if that’s your thing, and it’s also not recommended for suspension due to the stretch and density. That being said, the friction is great, and it feels incredibly luxurious.

Synthetic

While natural is great, you may want to consider going for a synthetic rope if you’re on a budget. Nylon rope is super soft, stretchy, and is incredibly strong. Polyester, on the other hand, feels more secure and stable compared to the slipperiness of nylon, so it’s better for beginners overall.

The History of Rope Bondage

Bondage is an beautiful, ancient art with fascinating roots; let’s take a look at how we got here!

Seiu Ito

The development of modern shibari or kinbaku is generally traced to the work of Seiu Ito, an artist who incorporated rope bondage into his erotic works early in the 20th century. We’re talking 1920s – check out his iconic work in the video!

Meanwhile, in the west

Around the same time, John Willie began to create erotic artwork involving rope bondage that would influence a generation of future rope artists. In the 1950s, Irving Klaw started doing the same, and one of his most popular models was the well-known Bettie Page. The “pin-up” genre of artwork expanded this archetype, and burlesque shows and detective magazines featuring captured and bound females continued to broaden the exposure and appeal of these kinds of images.

More and more popular

Here’s where it might become familiar to you. Bondage starts to bleed into visual culture more prominently in the 1960s/70s, with Eric Stanton’s iconic bondage comics, and the Japanese magazine ‘SM’ becoming more and more popular.

Blending together

Throughout this period in the West, there was undoubtedly some crossover and influence from Japanese bondage. However, despite these mutual influences, Japanese and Western rope bondage retained unique characteristics that still distinguish them as different styles of rope bondage art.

Practice Aftercare

Any act of BDSM could leave need for some aftercare when finished; you should practice aftercare to ensure your sub feels safe after BDSM scenes or acts. It can be important to recharge after certain acts which could be mentally, emotionally, or physically tiring.

Take care of sore spots

Take care of sore spots - Practice Aftercare
Treat any sore spots or injuries appropriately and with care.

Have a snack or a drink

Have a snack or a drink - Practice Aftercare
After treating sore spots, it is important to have something to eat or drink to ensure your body can recharge. For those that do not want to eat, a hot drink can be a great and soothing option.

Cuddle!

Cuddle! - Practice Aftercare
Care can be established through a good cuddle, or through gentle closeness.

Communication

Communication - Practice Aftercare
After play, it can be a good idea to communicate; it doesn’t have to be about the scene itself- it can be about anything that is in your mind.

Sleep, glorious sleep

Sleep, glorious sleep - Practice Aftercare
Give your body what it will inevitably need- a good sleep! Sleep will help you to recharge after a bdsm act, and is an important part of aftercare.

How to Use Bondage Rope

We’ve compiled some top tips for the best way to start your bondage rope journey, and to ensure that you get the most out of your bondage rope.

Take it slow

Take it slow

You don’t want to rush into something like bondage play. Keep it slow and simple to begin with. Establish a strong line of communication with your partner, and don’t jump into difficult knots or positions on your very first go. You may even want to work up to rope play by using easy-to-remove Velcro restraints.

Scissors at the ready

Scissors at the ready

Always have a pair of safety scissors on hand, like the ones recommended above. Scissors like these are essential back-ups in case something goes wrong during the session, or, perhaps more awkwardly, if you just have trouble untying them at the end of play. It happens to the best of us!

Try tying

Try tying

Practice tying the knots BEFORE you try them on a person. Practice once, and practice again, because errors during play range from killing the mood to causing harm to your partner. You could try tying around something like a bed post if you’re looking for a wrist-sized guide!

Have a safe word

Have a safe word

Trust and mutual consent between partners is the foundation of bondage. However, it may be hard to distinguish between participating in the ‘scene’ and an honest request to slow down or stop the experience in the middle of a session. Ensure you establish a safe word with your partner that is distinct enough from your play to take them out of it. You could even try a random word generator!

Potential position

Potential position

In this one, the person being restrained sits up straight with their knees bent and feet on the floor. Their elbows and knees are tied together, as are their ankles and wrists. This allows for some amazing vulnerability – the dom can go down on their partner as they struggle against their bonds, or stand over them and receive from above!

How to Clean Bondage Rope

Cleaning bondage rope can be a little more complex than other toys, because the materials are so varied and different. Luckily for you, there are plenty of people on the internet that have trial-and-errored it, so you don't have to! The videos below are super informative and come from people that have put in the time. The main thing to consider is that natural ropes will get moldy if they're not dried correctly, so make sure you look at the guide provided with the rope to ensure it lasts as long as it should.

FAQ

To engage in healthy bondage play, you and your partner should both agree on what you’re comfortable with before you begin. Have an open and honest dialogue with your partner about the roles you’re each drawn toward so that you both feel comfortable and confident experimenting.

Good quality bondage rope doesn't have to set you back a lot of money! Different materials and lengths will vary in price, but you can easily get good bondage rope for around $20.

Absolutely! There are some things you'll want to consider: length, material, thickness, to name a few - but you absolutely don't need to buy a certified 'bondage rope' in order to start playing.

There are multiple knots you can tie in order to minimize the storage space needed for your rope. Depending on the material and longevity of your rope, it's best to do your research to find the best method of storage. You can use twine or tie wraps to fix the rope in place, too. If you are using natural ropes, make sure it has good aeration to prevent drying and molding, and oil it before storage.

Everything comes with a risk. By using fit-for-purpose rope, communicating with your partner, and taking it as slow as you need to fully grasp the knots you are tying, you are minimizing that risk as much as possible.

What is Bondage Rope?

Bondage rope is a type of rope used to restrict movement, wrap, suspend, or restrain, as part of BDSM activities. There are many bondage styles, the most 'mainstream' being the Japanese style of shibari, an intricate knot-tying art adapted for erotic restraint. It can be very tricky to perform and therefore should only be performed by those who understand bondage and the risks that come with it; if performed safely and securely, bondage can be an intensely freeing and pleasurable experience. Bondage rope can come in different materials, such as cotton, hemp, bamboo silk, jute, and nylon. Each material has a different expertise and you should ensure you research this before buying so that you can get the best possible experience from your rope!

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