Sex Worker Search

E-Commerce for Sex Workers

14 April 2024
by theoz

Image courtesy of Blazoner.

Cash is king in the sex work business, especially for in person providers.

An envelope with my work name written on it containing my exact fee handed to me at the beginning of the session without me having to ask, is always very welcome.

But there are times when I'd like to be able to receive funds electronically and doing so can be a bit of a mine-field.

I hope the following ideas can be of use in enabling sex workers to engage in e-commerce in a way that's safe and profitable.

Two good reasons why a sex worker may choose to charge via electronic payments rather than cash are for deposits and for content sales.


The idea of a deposit is to minimise the risk of setting up an appointment with a prospective client and then having them not show up.

The timewaster is the bane of every sex worker's existence. They will pretend they want to meet and even go so far as agreeing to a day, time and location, just to trick you into entertaining them for free via calls, txt, whatsapp messages, exchanging pictures or whatever variety of pointless communication they can extract from you without paying. They have zero intention of meeting and paying.

Asking for a deposit very early on when contacted by a new client is a highly effective antidote to timewasters.

The problem is, some genuine clients will also look elsewhere rather than pay the deposit.

They might be concerned that you will keep the deposit and ghost them.

This is a legitimate concern. Deposit scams are very common. Especially on directories where the advertised sex worker has just one unverified ad and that's their entire web presence.

A sex worker who has their own website, eg every independent provider indexed in search results here on Sex Worker Search,  is very unlikely to be a deposit scammer.

Another possible deterrent to paying deposits is the clients need for discretion. Many clients are married or have a partner and do not want anything to appear on their bank statement that could raise suspicion.

Whether or not to charge deposits is up to the individual. It's a controversial topic. As you can see from the history of the use of the word "Deposit" in titles of posts on the sexworker subreddit.

Selling Content

There is massive demand for sexually explicit content produced by independent sex workers.

Porn is a multi billion dollar industry. Onlyfans alone had revenue worth $2.5 billion USD in 2022.

The combined revenue of the top 10 content sales sites including the likes of ManyVids, Patreon, Clips4Sale, FanCentro, AVN Stars and JustForFans is in the tens of billions.

And yet, for all those tens of billions of dollars, the industry is remarkably difficult to actually make any money in for individual, independent performers.

Each of the sites listed above take commissions of between 20% and 60% of sales.

OnlyFans  On their terms it says  they take a commission of 20%.

ManyVids: I couldn't find anything on the Manyvids website saying how much their commission is. Googling it didn't bring up an exact figure either as far as I could see. I guess it's a secret? Chat GPT says it's between 20 and 40%

Clips4Sale:  Says you can earn 60% of total clip sales and 80% of your customer tips on their Start Earning page.

FanCentro:  takes 25%. This information is easy to find on their FAQ.

JustForFans: takes a 30% commission according to this.

AdmireMe.VIP: according to their FAQ they take 20%

IsMyGirl:  It says here they take 20%

JustForFans: According to this site they take 20%. I couldn't find this information on the Justforfans site.

Fancentro: This article says they take 20%. Their website doesn't seem to say.

Those commissions listed above are exorbitant. Especially considering how little they actually do for content creators. Most of them don't disclose their commission on their own site as if they are ashamed of how badly they're ripping off sex workers.

None of the sites above generate much, if any, traffic  to the accounts of individual content creators. The only way to actually sell anything on any of these platforms is if you can attract paying customers by yourself from somewhere off platform. eg if you already have a massive social media following.

How to Get Paid

Ideally, it would be great if clients could simply pay deposits and our fees for content sales directly to each independent provider without any third party taking a commission.

Ways to receive payments online include credit card payment portals on our own personal websites, bank transfers, cryptocurrency, gift cards and wishlist sites.

Credit Card Payment Portal

Being able to simply take Visa and Mastercard payments directly on our own personal websites would be perfect.

Actually finding a payment portal provider who is willing to work with in person providers, is seemingly impossible.

If you are a content creator who does not meet clients in person, you might be able to get one of the payment providers to work with you but it will probably be one that specialises in "high risk" industries. Anything to do with porn or sex work is considered to be high risk for chargebacks. ie someone will pay for a video clip, watch it and then report it as an unauthorised transaction to their bank and get a refund.

This is the reason given why payment providers charge much higher fees and commissions to work with anyone in our industry.

For anything non porn related, the average total payment processing fees for Visa and Mastercard transactions typically range from around 1.5% to 3.5% of the transaction amount.

For anything that is porn related the fees are more likely to be between 5% to 15% or more of the transaction amount.

Someone on reddit recommended I've just sent them a message on twitter and I'll update here if they say they are sex work friendly.

Bank Transfers

Another payment method that should be ideal is simply logging into your internet banking as a client and sending money to a sex worker.

One problem is, if it's a personal account, the client is likely to need your real name.

Also, if your bank gets the idea that you're a sex worker, even if you work in a country where sex work is perfectly legal, they can close your account.

I'm based in UK so sex work is legal here. I'm registered as a sole trader. I pay tax. I have a business bank account in my work name with Tide. Even then it would only take one client to ignore my instructions and put something sex work related in the description like "porn video clip" and I could have my account closed.


Receiving payments via cryptocurrency like Bitcoin has the advantage of anonymity. You don't need to give your client your real name. Just a crypto address which is a long string of alphanumeric characters.

The main drawback is that very few clients have a crypto wallet and setting one up and using it is usually viewed as complicated beyond the ability of most clients to achieve.

It's not really that difficult.

Here are step by step instructions for the wallet and exchange I use. It's called OkX.

Visit the OKX Website: Open your web browser and navigate to the official OKX website.

Click on "Sign Up": On the homepage, locate and click on the "Sign Up" button. This will typically be located in the top-right corner of the page.

Fill Out the Registration Form: You'll be directed to the registration page where you'll need to fill out the registration form. Provide the required information, including your email address, password, and any other details requested by OKX.

Verify Email: After filling out the registration form, OKX will send a verification email to the email address you provided during registration. Check your email inbox for this verification email and click on the verification link to verify your email address.

Complete Verification Process: Depending on OKX's requirements, you may need to complete additional verification steps to fully verify your account. This may include providing identity verification documents such as a passport or driver's license and proof of address.

Log In to Your Account: Once your account is verified, log in to your OKX account using the email address and password you provided during registration.

Navigate to Wallet: After logging in, navigate to the wallet section of your OKX account. This is where you can manage your cryptocurrencies and access your OKX wallet.

Set Up Wallet: If you haven't already set up a wallet, you'll be prompted to do so. Follow the on-screen instructions to set up your OKX wallet. This typically involves generating a wallet address for each cryptocurrency supported by OKX.

Secure Your Account: It's important to take steps to secure your OKX account and wallet. This may include enabling two-factor authentication (2FA), setting up strong passwords, and following best practices for online security.

Deposit Funds: Once your wallet is set up, you can deposit funds into your OKX account to start trading. Navigate to the deposit section of your account and follow the instructions to deposit funds via bank transfer, credit/debit card, or cryptocurrency transfer from another wallet.

Start Trading: With funds deposited into your OKX account, you can start trading cryptocurrencies on the OKX exchange. Navigate to the trading section of your account to buy, sell, or trade cryptocurrencies.

Keep Your Information Updated: Make sure to keep your account information up to date, including your contact information and security settings, to ensure the security of your OKX account and wallet.

Their customer service is very good. I needed help to get set up. Again to buy Bitcoin to pay for ads. and again to sell Bitcoin clients sent me and transfer the fiat currency into my bank account. Each time I went on the Okx live chat and they walked me through the process.

Using crypto is a lot more challenging than using a credit card or sending a bank transfer but it is anonymous and you're unlikely to face any discrimination around being a sex worker.

Gift Cards

I often get clients to send me a gift card as a deposit if they don't want to do a bank transfer and have my work name on their bank statement and they feel that crypto is too complicated. John Lewis is a good one here in London, UK, as it can be used for anything in the department store or at any Waitrose supermarket. Selfridges is ok. They're a bit slow. Often takes until the next business day to come through. Amazon often doesn't come through. Clients often find their payments to Amazon for gift cards don't work. Either blocked by Amazon or by their bank.

Paxum and CCbill

I've seen these two recommended on a few different sites for example here and here. I will contact both and update this blog post when I hear back.


Venmo isn't available here in the UK but I understand some sex workers use it in USA. Venmo is anti sex work and will blacklist you if they find out you're a sex worker.


Cashapp is available in USA and UK but last year they suddenly decided to limit all UK users to £100 worth of transactions per month rendering it almost completely useless here. Like Venmo, they're anti sex work and will ban you if they find out you're a sex worker.


Don't ever use Paypal. They are notorious for being extremely anti-sex work. If they get any idea you're a sex worker, they will ban you and steal any money left in your account. If anyone asks them for a refund, they will always side with the buyer over the seller no matter what so they are the worst for chargebacks.


WishTender and Throne are platforms where clients can purchase gifts listed on the wishlists of sex workers.

Wishtender is supposed to allow clients to send gifts to sex workers and then sex workers can have the gifts sent to their address or they can withdraw the value to their bank account via Stripe.

Unfortunately Stripe dumped Wishtender in February and they still haven't managed to get their payment system working again. Initially they said they had another payment processor and it would be all up and running again in a few weeks but that was months ago and they still can't process payouts.

Throne states that they are privacy oriented and you can list items on your wishlist from any online store. It looks like you can withdraw funds if you have a cash balance on Throne.

Throne also uses Stripe but for now their payment system still seems to work.


This seemed like a really promising idea. It was intended to be an adult-industry-friendly payment solution that would enable adult entertainers and merchants to accept cryptocurrency for their services Unfortunately they had to shut down their operation last year when they lost their payment processor.

Petition to Ensure Sex Workers are Not Excluded From Banking Services in UK

I did my best to promote this petition at the time. I posted about it on the Sexworkers and Sexworkersonly subreddits where I'm a moderator. I posted on twitter and messaged all my contacts asking them to share tweets linking to the petition. I broadcast it to my whatsapp contacts and shared it as my whatsapp status and asked others to do the same. 1 month before the petition ended it didn't look like we would get the requisite 10,000 signatures needed to get a response from the UK government. Then thanks to a final push on reddit, we did reach to 10k signatures. We got the government to respond. All they had to say was "sex work is not illegal in UK so banks cannot discriminate against sex workers and close their accounts for no other reason than the legal industry in which they are employed. The government completely failed to make a statement to this effect.

Their response doesn't even mention the word 'Sex Worker' but does make a point of bringing up sex trafficking and modern slavery. Lists a few wishy washy platitudes about policies that already exist in general terms, for everyone, presumably including sex workers but without mentioning us specifically despite that being the entire point of the petition. Disappointed.

Other Campaigns Against Financial Discrimination

The Free Speech Coalition (FSC) does a lot of excellent work campaigning, mostly in USA, but also internationally, for sex worker rights including our right to use financial services.

More Information

Sex Worker Helpful has an article on payment options. It's from 2018 so double check what's there against more up to date sources but it's a great article.

I recommend reading this article shared on the National Ugly Mugs website about the impacts of financial discrimination against sex workers.