How to Have Anal Sex

Thinking about trying anal sex for the first time? Here's everything you need to know.

This first-time anal sex guide will talk you through how to have anal sex, anal experimentation and what you should know about anal intercourse to get it right. This guide will help you progressively experiment both alone, with a partner or with anal sex toys to achieve a satisfying anal sex life.

Banish any assumptions you have about anal from porn, movies and rumours. This is your play and you need to go at your own pace (and the pace of your partner if you’re getting them involved). Communication is key here but more on that later.

Take it easy, relax but most importantly, have fun. Your backdoor will love you for it.

Video: First time Anal Sex | How to do Anal

Video: Thinking about trying anal sex for the first time? Jess and Sammi tell you everything you need to know about first-time anal penetration in this video.

Let's kick things off with some of your burning questions before you get started...

Does Anal Sex Hurt?

There is almost always a possibility of pain when it comes to putting things up your anus however you should not feel any pain if you are readying yourself properly with all of our trusty tips. Like anything to do with your body, pain is a sign to stop and it’s important you listen to it, especially when it comes to anal play.

That doesn’t mean you should be disheartened by it though. It just means you need to prepare your body more by warming up your anus, using lots of lube and inserting something of a smaller size.

Is Anal Sex Bad for your Health?

While the risk of contracting an STI from anal sex is said to be higher, if you are taking all of the necessary precautions—including consent, wearing a condom and ensuring you clean up all body parts or toys involved before and after—there is absolutely no reason why anal sex should be bad for your health.


Preparing for anal sex and keeping things clean

Get Clean

It goes without saying that if you're sexually stimulating an area that's usually devoted to pooping, you will need to ensure that your anus is squeaky clean.

Have a relaxing bath beforehand and thoroughly clean the area.

Many butt sex beginners like to use an anal douche to guarantee complete and utter cleanliness, and it's something we highly recommend too.

If you're conscious about your lover seeing your anus in full for the first time, why not gently shave or wax the skin between your butt cheeks to make sure they're porn-flick worthy?

This is completely your own choice and isn’t 100% necessary but you may be surprised by how much more relaxed and confident it could make you.


When we’re feeling apprehensive or nervous, our body reacts to those feelings and our muscles can also become tense whether we want them to or not. This is exactly the opposite of how you want your body to feel when you’re doing anal play. It makes insertion harder, is more likely to cause anal tearing and will probably be quite painful.

This is why it’s so important to take the time to relax and get turned on before you begin anal. Try beginning your playtime with a massage (using your hands or a vibrator) around your pelvis, stomach, inner-thighs and butt cheeks before eventually moving to the anus. Coupled with deep breaths and a calm attitude, this will help your body relax.

It’s also important to make sure you actually want to do the deed. Your mind is always going to be your biggest road block when it comes to any kind of sex and if you’re not too keen on the thought of something, your body will follow suit.

The best anal lube

We can not stress enough how necessary lube is for anal sex. Unlike the vagina, anuses are not self-lubricating so giving them some extra slide is always a good idea.

What’s the best lube for anal sex you may ask? Definitely something nice and thick. At Lovehoney we have lubricants made specifically for anal which last longer so you can stay comfortable with less friction and irritation.

Whatever you’re planning on using in your back door, a water-based lube is always a good option as it won’t react adversely with anything. The Lovehoney Discover Water-Based Anal Lubricant is a best-seller and can be used with any kind of toy, condom or penis.

Silicone lubricant is an excellent choice for anal play as it is thick, silky and waterproof so it can easily be used in the shower or bath. Unfortunately, silicone-based lube can’t be used with silicone sex toys as they can react with each other and break. Try the pjur Back Door Silicone Anal Lubricant for silky smooth buttfun.

Like silicone, oil based lubes are thick and smooth but instead of breaking toys, they can break condoms after prolonged use.

Thinking about trying a numbing variation? As tempting as it may seem, desensitising those sensitive areas can be a bad idea. As we said before, pain is there to tell you to stop when your body needs it.

If you have particularly sensitive skin, you may want to try Sliquid Sassy Glycerin-Free Anal Lubricant - it has less ingredients than more lubricants so there's less chance of irritation.


Top 10 Anal Sex Tips for Beginners

1. Use Lube

Don't even think about attempting any form of anal penetration without using some form of lubricant. Spit is not enough, my friend.

We’ve covered all the best anal lubes in the section above so read up to find out what’s going to be the right choice for you.

2. Start Small

If this is your first time trying anal sex, it makes sense to start off by using your lover's fingers or a beginner's butt plug.

Something like the BASICS Slimline Butt Plug is perfect.

Using a small toy prior to play warms up the area, familiarizes your anus with the feeling of penetration and helps to relax the muscles.

You lover should start by lubing up the plug or their finger and start off with the tip, then gently work their finger or plug in until it is submerged.

You should continue to do this with up to three fingers or by going from a smaller to a larger butt plug, but only if you're still feeling comfortable and pleasured.

Don't forget to use lube on each finger you insert.

If and when you're ready, you can move up to larger insertables, such as a dildo or a penis.

Just remember to take your time, and keep any thrusting slow, and gentle. You may decide you like it harder or faster later, but for now, keep things simple while you find what you like.

3. Consider using a safeword

If anal play is outside of your usual repertoire of sex, you’re a beginner or even if you partake in it regularly but you’re trying something new this time round, it’s a good idea to choose a safeword with your partner.

Making sure you and your partner can stop play as soon as your chosen safeword is said builds trust and communication. Check out our blog on the most popular safewords to see some of our favourites and get some inspo.

4. Go slow

The last thing you want to be doing is rushing straight into anal intercourse without any foreplay. Ease into it by touching, rubbing and stimulating each other all over, focussing on your nipples, clitoris, penis and balls (whichever you have). Build arousal and slowly make your way to the anus.

There’s a reason we call it your backdoor - you have to ring the doorbell before entering. For anal, this means massaging and stimulating on and around the anus with your hands or a toy before you insert anything. Believe us when we say that if you or your partner are doing it properly, you’re not going to want that pleasure to end.

5. Practise on your own

If you think anal sex is something you’d like to try, it can often help to spend some time playing on your own to get a feel for the sensations. Try using your fingers, a butt plug or even working your way up to a dildo if you’re feeling confident. A dildo is also a great way for you to try different positions to see which angle in your rectum works best for your comfort and pleasure.

Make sure you keep what you do and don’t like in mind for later. If something doesn’t feel right when you’re doing it to yourself, it probably won’t feel any better when someone else is doing it to you.

6. Stimulate other erogenous zones as you go

Being fully aroused is what is going to make your anal play experience that much better. Whether you have a vulva or a penis, by stimulating your other genitals, nipples and sensitive spots as well as your anus, it can lead to explosive results.

For women and people with vulvas, using a clitoral stimulator, a G-spot vibrator or both can be incredibly satisfying.

For people with penises, while anal intercourse is awesome for P-spot stimulation, giving attention to your penis and testes at the same time can also feel amazing. Try a vibrating stroker or a double cock ring for the ultimate titillation combination.

7. Foreplay, foreplay, foreplay!

There are heaps of activities which fall under the umbrella of anal play and a lot of them are fun and frisky ways to prepare the body for anal penetration.

Anal (fore)play can include in anything from an anal massage to giving a rim job. Read our guides on the best anal toys here and how to try rimming for the first time here.

8. Use the bathroom

While it’s actually pretty rare for any bowel movement accidents to happen during anal, it’s always a good idea to clear things out to be sure. Make a stop at the restroom around two to four hours before you plan to get into any back door action and you and your rectum should be good to go.

9. Explore different positions

As we mentioned earlier, it’s important to feel as comfortable as possible during anal intercourse and what positions you’re in will often make a big difference to this. If you’re a beginner receiver, it’s a good idea to find a position where you can be in control of the depth, speed and the angle of your partner’s strap-on or penis.

Remember, this doesn’t have to be a dominant/submissive type of play as it is often portrayed so giving the “bottom” control can be an exciting and pleasurable feeling for both parties.

Try a position like the Liberated Lover or the Sexy Squat where the receiver is on top and can slowly lower themselves on to the giver, increasing the speed and depth of penetration as they please.

10. Clean up

After each time you've finished having anal sex, make sure that you thoroughly clean your anus and the toy or body part used to penetrate you.

A good wipe with Lovehoney Fresh Biodegradable Sex Toy & Body Wipes should leave you feeling fresh again, but a quick shower with your lover is even better.

If you used any toys, remember to give them a thorough clean with soap and water or a sex toy cleaner and store them separately once dry.

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Other Things to Know about Having Anal Sex

Condoms: Should you wear them?

Not only does it help to make the clean up easier, but wearing a condom during anal sex can significantly lower your chances of transmitting STIs including syphilis chlamydia and gonorrhea. This is especially necessary if you or your partner are having sex with multiple people.

Thanks to the tightness of the anus, it’s far less likely the giver will feel any decrease in sensation which is sometimes used as an excuse for not using a condom during P in V sex (so basically, no excuses). Use a silicone-based or hybrid anal lube is best to use as they will last longer than water-based lubes and won’t break the condom like an oil-based lubricant can.

Make sure you remove the condom once you’ve finished using it with any anal play to avoid cross contamination of your anus and rectum’s bacteria in other parts of the body. If you have a vagina, the last thing you want is stool particles up there as it can cause an array of health issues.

Just so we’re clear, you can’t fall pregnant from anal intercourse (but be careful of any semen seeping towards your cooch if you have one). Condoms are used purely for protection against STIs and for cleanliness however this doesn’t make them any less important.

Is it normal to bleed?

Bleeding during anal sex is completely normal but there is no need to be alarmed. The two most common causes are from small anal tears around the anus or from hemorrhoids.

The former shouldn’t be a cause for concern (they are often too small to even feel and should heal on their own), however if you do experience any excessive pain or bleeding, it might be a good idea to see your doctor. For hemorrhoids, it’s recommended you avoid any anal play if you have them as it can cause the sensitive hemorrhoids to burst and become quite uncomfortable. Again, see your doctor if you are concerned about the amount of blood or discomfort there might be.

It IS possible to orgasm through anal sex

Regardless of what you have between your legs, it’s very possible to reach climax through anal play and just because of the multitude of tingly nerves in and around the anus.

For those with a prostate, stimulating your P-spot (which is located within the rectum) can create next-level orgasms. For people with a vagina, anal intercourse can indirectly apply stimulation to the G-spot and walls of the vagina - is that’s not enough, add some playful stimulation to your clitoris or penis using your hand or a toy and prepare for fireworks.