Navel fetishism

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Navel closeup.jpg

Navel fetishism is a sexual fetish in which an individual is attracted to the human navel (umbilicus).

A navel fetishist can be sexually aroused by a variety of stimuli, including key words, thoughts or specific forms of physical interaction with the navel such as viewing, licking or sniffing. This attention is usually directed at a partners navel, but may include a fixation on the fetishist's own belly-button.


Some navel fetishists engage in outercourse involving the navel, or navel torture – where the objective is to inflict intense sensory stimulation and even pain to a person’s navel.


Forms of navel torture include: dripping hot oil or wax into the navel or poking pins into the navel, and forcing the navel from an inwards position into an outwards position. This is often done with the aid of a syringe.

Other less common navel fetishism is a gymnastic exercise called the "belly-ups", where a kind of stick called a "rod", about three and a half inches long, made of dark plastic is placed upon the navel. It is then usually pressed against the ground when a person is lying face down.


The fetish for navels may be explained by behavioral imprinting in early childhood, or to a lesser extent in adolescence or adult life. Others claim that the navel and genitalia can send sensory information to similar parts of the brain.

The anthropologist Desmond Morris (and author of "The Human Zoo") has argued that the bellybutton is a miniature image of the vagina. This is a disputed idea, partly due to the fact that navel fetishism is present in some homosexual males and heterosexual females.


A navel fetishist can be sexually aroused by a variety of stimuli, including key words, thoughts or specific forms of physical interaction with the navel.

Physical activity

Some navel fetishists find physical acts involving the navel to be turn-ons. Physical acts can include licking the navel with the tongue or rubbing body lotion or suntan oil. Some fetishists get a turn-on from pouring drops of champagne, honey, chocolate sauce, whipped cream, etc., into and around the navel and then licking or sucking it up. Similarly, licking or rolling the tongue into the navel while underwater can produce erotic sensations.

The navel is an erogenous zone with a heightened sensitivity. The navel and the region below when touched by the finger or the tip of the tongue result in the production of erotic sensations, and some people are very ticklish to touch in that area. Some people can be aroused by tickling and teasing with a feather, flower or a piece of grass, especially when the person is ticklish in the navel. Fingering the navel is also a common act. Some prefer to perform navel torture, a series of pain-inflicting acts such as piercing and stabbing the navel. This attention is usually directed at a partner's navel, but may include a fixation on the fetishist's own navel.

Viewing and fantasizing activity

Some navel fetishists can be aroused by viewing a navel. In the case of a heterosexual man, women in bikini is one such example. Also women dressed in low-rise clothing like jeans, shorts etc., that reveals the navel is also considered sexually arousing. Indian journalist Bachi Karkaria had once commented,"The navel is an erogenous zone. This is the reason why its exposure is always in fashion.Women have flashed it through the ages because men are turned on by it. It is shown because it wants to be seen". Videos featuring above said physical acts are very common and are viewed worldwide. Their popularity has become more compared to regular porn videos. Belly dancers often have navel piercings or insert sequins into their navels to make it look attractive when they perform/ Not only them,many young everyday women also have them to add a charm to their navels. Such decorations also arouse when seen. In India, navel exposure in low-rise saris is more common than western attire. Sometimes just the thought of the navel is enough to stimulate. Some navel fetishists sexually fantasize about the above physical acts on a person's navel to attain sexual pleasure. The Samoan tribe people find the sight of the navel sexually arousing.


Sometimes literary works focusing on navels or which sexually symbolize navels can also act as stimuli to navel fetishists. One such work is Navel Revue by author Jay Hahn-Lonne which is an autobiographical study of a man's obsession with navels. In the Song of Songs, a book in the Hebrew Bible, (Songs of Solomon in the Christian bible) there are allusions to exotic things in nature, with frequent interweaving of nature with erotic imagery. In Solomon's lavish praise of his love – the country girl, Sulaimi – the navel is mentioned as follows: "thy navel is like a round goblet, which wanteth not liquor: thy belly is like an heap of wheat set about with lilies." (7:2) Robert W. Service in his short poem "Navels" wrote, "Men have navels more or less;....Woman's is a pearly ring,....So dear ladies, recognise The dimpling of your waist Has approval in my eyes, Favour in my taste......How a rosebud navel would Be sweet to kiss!" In Ancient Indian Sanskrit literature, writers like Adi Shankara, Kālidāsa etc., have symbolized & referred to the navel while describing the beauty of Hindu Goddesses.

Sexual nature of the navel

Visual resemblance

Due to its shape, appearance and proximity to female genitals, a female's navel is considered as a secondary vulva by some men. In many classic paintings such as Danae and The Toilet of Bathshebah this resemblance has been considered. Thereby which the navel was used as a metaphor to denote the female's genital area. In ancient Egyptian and Syrian art depicting lovers, the vulva and navel are often interchangeable in their schematic representations. Some lexical evidence from Arabic indicate that the word "Navel" translates to "Vulva". Zoologist turned author Desmond Morris had once commented that the navel has become increasingly vaginal in the second half of the twentieth century. He further added that in older paintings and photographs, the navel was usually round, but the vertical slit seems to be increasingly prevalent just at a time when the navel is being displayed more and more widely. Editor of Maxim magazine Anup Kutty of Indian origin in an interview about traditional Indian men once said,"Some random surveys conducted by women in our country have revealed that traditional Indian men don't even know about the option of going south. I am not surprised. There are many who still think a women's navel is where you get jiggy.


The navel not only acts as an erogenous zone but also used by some navel fetishists as a target of outercourse. Some men enjoy rubbing their penis around a partner's navel. Some even try to involve in "navel intercourse" similar to mammary intercourse if a partner has sufficient skin around his or her waist

Mating potential

Aki Sinkkonen at the University of Helsinki in Finland believes that the navel may be an indicator of mating potential in fertile women. In his article in the The FASEB Journal, he proposes that the umbilicus, together with the surrounding skin area, is an honest signal of individual vigor. He suggests that the symmetry, shape, and position of umbilicus can be used to estimate the reproductive potential of fertile females, including risks of certain genetically and maternally inherited fetal anomalies


Indian philopsoher Osho once told that the navel is very close to the sex center. If sexuality is repressed, then the navel becomes very sensitive, because sexuality repressed starts gathering behind the navel. A repressed person’s navel becomes one of the most erogenous zones. It is not naturally an erogenous zone, but it happens only if natural sex has been repressed too much.


Madonna Live.jpg

The following are some celebrities who have a fixation for navels.

  • Renowned singer Madonna in an interview for the May 1985 edition of Spin had said, "My favorite button is my belly button. I have the most perfect belly button: an inny, and there’s no lint in it.When I stick my finger in my belly button, I feel a nerve in the center of my body shoot up my spine. If 100 belly buttons were lined up against a wall, I could definitely pick out which one is mine." Displaying her bare navel during performances became her trademark.
  • American actor Sal Mineo had a fetish for navels.His partner Courtney Burr had once commented in an interview that he came to know about Sal Mineo's navel fetish. In the book Sal Mineo: A Biography, author Michael Gregg Michaud wrote,"Sal had an insatiable sex appetite."We were physically opposite," Courtney explained, "but we were completely compatible sexually. We'd go at it for the longest time, take a 20-minute break, and do it again. When we had the chance, we'd do it all day. I discovered his fetish for navels. He loved mine. And he had a strange recurring dream that he was being chased and then stabbed in the navel."
  • British actress Keira Knightley claimed that her navel piercing won her a role in the film Love Actually since its director Richard Curtis was obsessed with her navel.She once commented in an interview,"My mum always wanted it to be my little secret, but it's become a bit of a trademark. Apparently Richard Curtis fell in love with it when he saw BEND IT LIKE BECKHAM. That's how I got to be in his film Love Actually.So when my character got married in Love Actually the wedding dress was designed to expose my bellybutton."
  • Lisa Donahue, the winner of Big Brother 3 (U.S.) had once commented in the show, "I can orgasm just from my navel being touched the right way" and later in an interview had said,"Many ask if I can really orgasm with my navel..well, no I can't....I just really like my navel played with!!"
  • Chilean writer Isabel Allende in a chapter on eggs on one of her books had said, "I like a raw egg served on my lover's navel, with chopped onions, salt, pepper, lemon and a drop of Tobasco".
  • Telugu movie director Raghavendra Rao has a huge fetish for the navel since his movies always have guaranteed navel show of the heroines. He used to include the navel of the heroine in every possible frame and exploit it in song sequences such as dropping of water, flowers, fruits, ice cubes etc., on the navel. Legendary Telugu actor & director Dasari Narayana Rao had once commented, "When you see a heroine slightly removing her pallu to show her inside assets, you don’t feel ashamed of it because of the artistic way in which Ragahvendra Rao projects it on the screen. Especially heroines' navels look most beautiful in his movies".

See also

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