It’s not exactly news that porn viewership has surged in the pandemic. When a country is gripped by uncertainty and isolation, the simple pleasure of jerking off can seem like all that’s left. When you couple that with soaring unemployment and a nosedive in disposable income, of course people will look to sustain their sexual desires on a small budget—a.k.a. the free porn from tube sites or affordable subscriptions to OnlyFans pages. But what happens if blowing your budget is your kink?
Goddess Alexis’s days don’t usually start until lunchtime and end at three in the morning. Before her bedtime, a submissive contacted her to meet up. He arrived in a Tesla sporting a ski mask and handed off$500 in cash. A few hours later, he returned with another $500. The Los Angeles–based financial dominatrix recounts this as a normal day; sometimes she wakes up to hundreds of dollars in tributes across her various payment methods. She also has a video on her Twitter page of a man crawling on all fours, kissing and licking her shoes, with over 11,000 views. At one point, she kicks him in the face.
In another video that went viral, Southern financial dominatrix Mistress Marley is seen walking an older white man on a leash during North Carolina Central University’s homecoming event. The video, captioned with “she brought her sugar daddy to homecoming” and laugh emojis, has over 3 million views. Marley was quick to refute that characterization. “That’s not my sugar daddy, it’s my sub lol he pays for me to control him,” she replied—not expecting the onslaught of praise from hundreds of people. This interaction, like all the others mentioned in this piece, is consensual.
The sex industry is easy enough to enter, and the increased popularity of OnlyFans in the past year has made even the most inexperienced person a bona fide adult star with nothing but a smartphone. Although still relatively obscure, financial domination being seen as an easy payday has led to an influx of newcomers diving headfirst into an industry that is far more complicated.
Goddess Jaim, a 21-year-old full-time financial dominatrix, was struggling to make ends meet. In addition to going to school full-time for forensic science, Jaim worked nights as an Uber driver from 7 p.m. to 2 a.m. After Uber updated its policy for how old a driver’s car can be, she was left without a job. “I literally searched online for ‘ways to make money’,” Jaim says with a giggle. “And then I came across findom.”
After a failed stint as a sugar baby, financial domination seemed much more aligned with Jaim’s personality. She initially started as a catfish dominatrix, a subset of the fetish that is not as profitable but less of a privacy concern. Catfish dominatrixes create social media profiles posing as celebrities like Gigi Hadid or Kylie Jenner, or use photos of Instagram models while making it clear that they are not who they appear to be. The thrill of being scammed, as well as no expectation of loyalty beyond a transaction, makes it appealing for submissives of the fetish, but Jaim was dissatisfied.
Within a few weeks, she had scrubbed her catfish persona in favor of her actual photos. Within four months, Jaim was netting between $2,500 and $5,000 a month.
It hasn’t always been this easy to find communities and resources to get into this specific subset of domination. For Taylor Knight, it just fell into her lap.
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