Months ago, I was lucky enough to receive a lovely package of review items from FunWares. One of these items was the 16″ Japanese Love Rope by Topco Sales. I was excited to try it out, seeing as it looks and feels very different from my cotton rope.
This rope comes packaged in an easy-to-open blister package that I thought was just too big and bulky for the product inside. Yeah, I get that companies are making their products all shiny so customers will pick them out when hanging on the shelf, but I really didn’t need all of the extra plastic with this thing. The rope comes neatly coiled around the central plastic indentation along with a paper insert showcasing a scantily-clad anime-style woman and the product title “Japanese Silk Love Rope“. Anyone who sees this will know exactly what it’s for if you still have it laying around in the packaging.
I pretty much opened my rope and scrapped the packaging – make sure to recycle the paper insert!! There is a cute little booklet included within the package that I hoped would contain some basic knots and how-to pictures, but alas it was wordy with tips and safety precautions. Great to have with any product especially those that may fall into the hands of a beginner, but I didn’t need it. Funnily enough I tried to hold onto it for the purpose of this review, then lost it. Oh well.
The rope itself was a far cry from my large collection of Japanese Bondage Rope by Doc Johnson. It wasn’t a disappointment as much as it was different, and the difference threw me for a loop. Firstly, this rope is extremely brightly coloured. I would call it a grape purple, and very intense. Compared to the muted red and black of my other rope, it doesn’t exactly fit in well. The Love Rope is listed in a few places as being made of silk which gives it a very reflective texture. I’m not convinced that the material is proper silk, however Topco did not respond to my inquiry. The braiding that makes up the rope is also very large and I can push two pieces of the rope together like I would those chinese finger traps I played with as a kid ((Sorry if I ruined the secret to getting out of those things)). This might result in the weaving catching on something if you aren’t being careful with your rope. Nails or staples would certainly do the trick for pulling the weave out of your rope. My suggestion? Just be careful. If you’re only using this for bondage scenes and you put your rope away afterwards, I don’t forsee an issue with damaging it.
Because of the rope braiding style, it has a sort of flattened oval shape to it. Unfortunately, the manner in which it flattens is inconsistent throughout the rope based on how it was packaged. The perfectionist in me finds this a bit irritating, but I imagine it could be fixed if wound tightly and neatly around something solid for a few days. The ends of the rope are each held together with an aglet, possibly plastic or rubber, that fits over the end with a bit of space to spare. I suppose these could come off in theory but you’d have to be doing some seriously rough shit — I’m pretty sure the aglets are glued on. I did some hard yanking and with a bit of focused effort, I got one of the aglets off. It seemed to be glued on in one place and with the force I had to exert, I wouldn’t expect these to come off by accident.
Oddly enough the rope that had been inside the aglet((An aglet is the plastic/metal sheath you find on the ends of shoelaces and such))looked much nicer. It was all rounded and more tightly woven than the rest of the rope length. With a bit of a struggle I got the rope back in the aglet, but I plan to use some electrical tape to make sure it doesn’t fall off now that I ripped the glue away. *sigh*
In use, this rope works just fine for tying up limbs and such. It will sufficiently tie two limbs together or any combo of two limbs together to something else. It would probably work quite well in a hogtie as well, but there isn’t enough length here for a body harness of any nature. The unfortunate thing about this rope is that any knots you tie will come apart faster than cotton rope. While this may be good from a safety standpoint, it makes it impossible to use two of these lengths of rope together. I would also advise against cutting this into smaller lengths because not only will you need to tape the ends, it might come unraveled before you get a chance.
Don’t get me wrong – this rope feels heavenly. I’ve had no problems with rope burn of any kind and indentations from tightly-wound ropes don’t stick around too long. I can be easily bound in a position and as long as I don’t have use of my hands, the knots hold sufficiently enough to keep me relatively immobile. I also love the bright colour.
What I don’t like is that I can’t cut my rope into separate lengths or tie lengths together for more options. I enjoy having a small number of items in by BDSM arsenal that can be used for multiple types of scenes, and this just don’t cut it in that department. Even so, I plan on holding onto my rope until it falls apart. I believe it would be hard to ever have too much.
If you’re looking for a first-time rope piece, this Japanese Love Rope is certainly an option for you. It’s colourful, comfortable, and holds up well especially for the price. If you’d like to get more length options out of your rope, however, I would certainly recommend picking up a few lengths of the Doc Johnson Bondage Rope instead.
This product was provided to me free of charge in exchange for an unbiased review. This review is in compliance with FTC guidelines.