The Most Common Fetishes in the United States

Dr. Evan Goldstein for Gayety

In the last few years, you may have noticed that fetishes and kinks are becoming more commonly discussed. Many people are more comfortable discussing their fetishes. In part, we can attribute this to the popularity of media such as Fifty Shades of Grey which catapulted communities like BDSM into the spotlight (inaccurately, though, as many people claim).

Unfortunately, “kink-shaming” is becoming a thing too. While many fetishes and kinks remain on the fringes of most people’s vocabulary and experiences, studies have shown that for many, they are simply a part of their sexual development and identity development. And the stigma around various kinks and fetishes can take a real toll on those that prefer them.

At Future Method, we believe intimacy should be healthy, judgment-free and safe for everyone, which includes eliminating the stigma around things like fetishes, where two consenting, safe, non-violent adults are involved. We also believe in making proper education backed by science accessible, which is part of our mission and why we run this blog!

Pondering all of this, we got to wondering–everyone’s got to be a little bit kinky, right? Even if not, there are certain fetishes that are more prevalent than others, whether individuals will admit to it or not. We’ve peeked behind the curtain in Google search term volume to reveal the various types of fetishes and kinks that rose to the top of the list in every state. Our result? Read on to find out!

In all its glory, we present the Fetish Map of the United States of America. Which fetishes is your state Googling the most?

We have to commend Texas for staying true to its rodeo roots with a fascination with whipping. The same goes for tough, business-like New York with its leather fetish, and stifling hot Nevada with its …armpit fetish? Okay, that was a stretch. No offense to Nevada.

Some of the most popular fetishes in the United States include masochism, group play, sadism, sports gear, and armpits, in fact. Clearly, BDSM has a strong presence, and so do some other fun ways to play with your partner.

This map displays the most commonly searched fetish in every state, but many may also be considered kinks. Wondering the difference, and maybe what some of these fetishes mean? Check out this handy guide to fetishes from A to Z.

Are there regional trends to these fetishes? The map below organizes the most popular fetishes in the South, West, Northeast, and Midwest.

As you can see, masochism, sadism, or BDSM as a whole is popular in three out of the four U.S. regions–except for the Midwest. We suppose they’re just too polite! Instead, Midwesterners prefer sports gear and group play, though, so maybe they’re not so innocent after all.

In the South, suits are another most popular fetish. The Northeast has a whopping nine tied for most popular, including BDSM, sadism, balloons, edging, group play, leather, nylons, sounding, and of course, the classic foot fetish. What’s going on up there, northerners? It certainly sounds fun.

We tallied up the most popular fetishes in the United States in order. It makes for a fascinating list. You can view that chart below.

We were surprised to learn that there are so many unique popular fetishes in the U.S. Many states have something they alone can call their favorite, which just goes to show how varied human desire can be! And we think that’s a beautiful thing.

Did the Fetish Map of the United States of America shock you, intrigue you, or teach you something new? We certainly hope so, especially the latter, as that’s our goal here on Future Edition. We encourage our readers to practice safe play and pay special attention to how they prepare to play, which can truly heighten any experience you choose to experience by adding an ever-important factor: peace of mind.