Swinging Terminology – What does it all mean?

If you’ve looked into swinging you may have noticed that swingers seem to have certain phrases. Things such as  ‘Unicorn‘ and ‘Bull’ – you would be forgiven for feeling a little left behind with regards to swinging terminology.

As with most online cultures swingers use various acronyms and swinging  terms to help them say exactly what they mean to say to the rest of the community, in some ways this keeps a bit of mystique, discretion and also the sense of community strong.

Do I need to learn any swinging terminology?

To be honest, you don’t need to know any swinging terms , and you may surprise yourself by already knowing a few. Truth is, knowing what things mean isn’t compulsory for starting out, and there’s no ‘swinger test’ to complete in order to prove you are a true swinger.

That said, knowing what some things mean can’t hurt and may help you find what you are looking for more quickly, especially when trying to navigate through a potential partner’s bio, tweets or private messages.

Let’s learn some basic phrases

We have compiled a short list of the most commonly used swinging terminology and phrases – it’s not a comprehensive list by any means, but it will give you a good idea of what some of the more popular words and phrases mean.


A cuckold is the husband or the male part of a relationship in which a woman may enjoy multiple sexual partners, often (though not always) with an emphasis on his humiliation.

Full Swap

A full swap is when two couples switch partners and do anything up to and including full sex. It’s also described as “same room swap” and “separate room swap”, which outline what setting you’re okay with.


The word ‘play’ is often used as a softer way of referencing of some kind of sexual practice. It’s accompanied by all kinds of terms, from rope play to ‘playing on cam’.


Hotwifing is similar to cuckolding, however the emphasis is on the pleasure of both parties, who enjoy the encounter equally. Often, the female will have encounters with the male partner’s knowledge but without his involvement, which heightens arousal for both.

It all comes with experience

It may take a little bit of time to get to know many of the terms that swingers use. In time you will find the ones that are relevant to what you want to convey to the masses.