SAN FRANCISCO – Just call us the United States of Kink. During 2016, the percentage of Americans enjoying a little kink in their lives grew an average of 40 percent, according to a new report from BDSM entertainment company Kink.com.
This year, as in the inaugural 2015 effort, Kink evaluated BDSM, fetish and polyamory data from the 50 largest U.S. cities using four metrics: the total size of the city’s kink-identified population, the size of the kink population relative to the city’s overall size, the number of resources available for kink-identified people in each city and visits to BDSM and fetish entertainment websites. The Kink team also looked at sales data from the company’s retail arm, as well as growth rates in the overall kink-identified population versus 2015, to determine overall trend lines for the community.
Though 49 cities showed at last 25-percent growth in their kink-identified populations (San Jose, California’s population shrank), Los Angeles’s kink community has more than doubled in the two years since the study was first conducted, growing an astonishing 114 percent. Los Angeles also now has the greatest number of resources for kink-identified people, with more than 500 kink-friendly doctors, lawyers, therapists, play spaces and retailers.
Why meteoric growth in Los Angeles would surprise anyone is a mystery.
“Los Angeles is quickly becoming the new center of the kink world,” said Mike Stabile, a spokesperson for Kink.com. “L.A. topped or nearly topped every metric we looked at, while being half the [population] size of other kink centers like New York. And despite the rising housing market, kink-friendly spaces have not been forced out on the same scale they have in cities like San Francisco.”
Portland, Ore., which topped the 2015 list, had the slowest kink growth of any city on the previous list, slipping to number three this year.
New York City topped this year’s survey with the largest total number of kink-identified people, while Atlanta, a newcomer to the top 10 list, had the greatest density of kink-identified people: More than 7 percent of the city’s population is represented on the fetish community website Fetlife. In 2015, Portland held the density crown with 3.99 percent.
El Paso, Texas, was again the least kinky city in the United States. No real surprise there, either.
The 10 kinkiest U.S. cities, according to the Kink report are:
1 – Los Angeles
2 – New York
3 – Portland, Ore.
4 – San Francisco
5 – Chicago
6 – Las Vegas
7 – Atlanta
8 – Washington, D.C.
9 – Boston
10 – Austin, Texas
The full report is here.