Beginner’s Guide to Anal Sex

It’s naughty, taboo, and has long been referred to as the ‘holy grail’ of sex, but the veil of stigma surrounding anal is finally starting to lift. And to that we say, celebrate!

“Anal sex shouldn’t be a topic that people avoid; we believe the key to any healthy relationship is communication and a desire to explore together.”

Unfortunately, many people’s first experience of anal sex is accidental, or badly prepared, putting many people off for life. But, with good preparation, going in the back door can be enjoyable for everyone involved.

Whether you’re just curious, have a partner dying to try it, or need some advice on how to have anal sex, then the Ann Summers beginner’s guide to anal sex is the best place to start.

Why have anal sex
in the first place?

For men, receiving anal sex is all about the P-Spot, a.k.a. the prostate. It’s the guy version of the female G-Spot, and is located a few centimetres up the anus. If you don’t know what we’re talking about, learn how to find and massage his p-spot and her g-spotin our guide, and don’t be afraid to start exploring with your finger.

Women don’t have a P-spot up there - sorry ladies - but anal can still be extremely pleasurable, as the booty is full of a ridiculous amount of nerve endings.

“Did you know it’s possible for women to orgasm through anal sex? Remember, it’s all about pleasure, not pain”

If you’re the ‘giver’ in anal sex, the tightness around the shaft is incredibly stimulating. The kinkiness of giving your lover a backstage pass is a thrill on its own; it’s a naughty, new way to play and a huge turn on.

But, as with all sex acts, if you don’t want to do it, don’t. Pressure isn’t sexy.

4 myths about anal sex

Myth #1
It will hurt


This is the most commonly-heard myth about anal sex, but it doesn’t have to hurt. If it does, it’s probably been done incorrectly. It can be incredibly pleasurable for both partners; you just have to start slow and work your way up.

Myth #2
It’s dirty


If pain is the biggest myth, then this is a close second, and we understand the misconception. The truth is that it’s a passageway, not a storage area and so it doesn’t really contain anything “dirty”. But, that doesn’t mean that you should move from anal to vaginal sex or vice versa - this can cause vaginal infections - a huge no-no!

Myth #3
It will damage your body


Doing anything the wrong way can cause you physical damage, and the same goes for sex. If you experience vaginal dryness and need to use lube during sex but don’t, then you can cause micro-tears. It’s the same for anal sex, except your anus doesn’t produce its own natural lubrication, so it needs a little extra help.Try our Booty Relax lube, specifically developed for anal sex.

Myth #4
You’ll get stretched out


You’ve probably heard that childbirth or too much sex can stretch the vagina beyond repair. This isn’t true. And it’s the same for anal sex. Regular and healthy anal sex (gentle and with plenty of lubrication) will not cause your anus to stretch. Just like the vagina, your back passage can accommodate a range of sizes; the key is to relax.

The must-follow dos and don’ts of anal sex

The dos...

  • DO use lube - And lots of it. If you think you’ve used enough, add a little more just for luck. More on this later!
  • DO stop if you experience pain - Don’t force anything that doesn’t feel right. It’s normal to experience some discomfort especially if it’s your first time, but certainly don’t push through the pain.
  • DO keep an eye on your partner’s body language - If you’re the giver, you need to keep a close eye on the receiver. Encourage them to communicate and stop if they look like they are in pain.
  • DO wear a condom - Whilst it’s true that there’s no risk of the pitter patter of tiny feet, STDs are still transferrable. Anal sex should be fun and feel great; don’t let a nasty little infection spoil the party.

The don'ts...

  • DON’T dive straight in without warming up - We mentioned that you need lube, right? Real life isn’t like what you may have seen in porn; you can’t just thrust in and expect your partner to enjoy it. Foreplay is key.
  • DON’T have a drink - If it’s your first time having anal, you might be tempted to down a shot (or two) for a bit of courage. But we’d strongly advise against that, as you need to be fully aware of the sensations in your body at all times.
  • DON’T go from anal to vaginal - Or vice versa. Yes, even if you’re wearing a condom. As clean as you may be back there, there’s still a whole lot of bacteria, so this is a big no-no.

"Keep an eye on your partner’s body language. If you’re the giver, you need to keep a close eye on the receiver. Encourage them to communicate and stop if they look like they are in pain."

Start with anal foreplay

Warm-ups aren’t just for beginners. Whether you’re a first timer or an anal addict, you should always warm up with some backdoor play. Get your partner to use a little lube and massage the entrance with their finger. This will help you relax and get used to the feeling of those nerves being stimulated.

“Take things a little further with some anal toys.”

For beginners, a small butt plug is perfect, and allows your muscles to get used to the feeling of having something inserted.

For the more adventurous among us, anal beads are a new and exciting experience. Insert them gently and as pleasure heightens - to the point of orgasm if you’re stimulating the clitoris or penis - pull them out (slowly!) as they go over the edge for sensations worthy of screaming.

Anilingus (a.k.a rimming or anal oral sex) is a great way to get more comfortable with the booty, too - very intimate and very erotic.

How to prepare for anal sex

Even if you’re raring to get started, don’t just jump in at the deep end. There are a couple of things you need to think about first, even if you’ve gone the back way a dozen times before. Here's our best anal advice:


We’ve already covered how this is everyone’s biggest worry when venturing on an anal expedition. So much so that it stops people from relaxing enough to enjoy it! This concern is totally normal, and honestly, the reality is that nothing horrifying will happen. Just prepare by heading to the bathroom that day, and cleaning thoroughly in a warm and soapy bath or shower before you get busy.

If you’re still concerned, put your mind at rest and use an anal douche. It’s a squeezy bulb with a small tube that’s used to clear your passage. Don’t be intimidated! Fill it with lukewarm water, lube up the tube, insert slowly and gently squeeze. Rinse and repeat until the water runs clear. You’re good to go.



If there’s one golden rule for anal sex, it’s grab a tube of lube. Don’t misunderstand us; we don’t just mean a little squeeze. We really do mean a lot, particularly when talking about anal for beginners. Unlike the vagina, the A-hole does not produce any natural lubricant, so it’s an essential tool in your sex toy chest.

It’s not just for safety; it’ll feel better too! Lube heightens sensitivity and can also help your muscles to relax. It also provides a cushioning effect to reduce the risk of tissue tears.

There are lubes out there that have been specially designed for anal sex, and there are a few golden lube rules to follow. Opt for thicker lubes, as they won’t dry out as quickly as the thinner variety, so you don’t have to worry about reapplying. Be sure to steer clear of the numbing or tingling varieties too. Although you may jump at the chance for numbing to reduce your discomfort, it also means that you may not notice when something damaging is happening.

So, we’ll say it again for the people in the back: lube up, hotties.



We said earlier that it’s important to use a condom during anal sex, but you should still wrap up even if you’re with a long-term partner. Whilst you may both be 100% sure that you’re clean from STIs, condoms are still an effective way to make sure anal play is hygienic. Just check that the type of lube you’re using is condom-safe - always use water-based or silicone-based with latex condoms. Avoid oil-based as these can cause the condom to break.


"The truth is that you can perform anal sex in almost any position that you want; what’s important is that you’re comfortable."

The best positions for first time anal

Thought there was only one way to play? Think again. The truth is that you can perform anal sex in almost any position that you want; what’s important is that you’re comfortable. Many people, particularly first-timers, will feel nervous at the thought of going on top, but the truth is that it gives you much more control. Anyway, enough foreplay, here are a few of Ann Summers’anal favourites...


This one is ideal for anal sex beginners, as it allows the receiver to get comfortable, lay back, and relax. It’s intimate, easy, and perfect for communicating during a first time. It makes anal sex less ‘porno’, and more an act of love and trust.

Top tip - prop some pillows under your hips and legs if you need a better angle.


Everyone loves a good spoon, don’t they? This is gentlest and most easy-going position, which makes it perfect for beginners. Both of you lie on your sides, with the giver behind the receiver. It’s very intimate - cosy, even - and control over the situation is split pretty equally.

Doggy Style

The classic anal sex position, and the one that most likely springs to mind when a conversation turns to the backdoor. The receiver is on all fours, the giver kneeling behind. Simple enough. But it’s important to be careful with this position, as there’s quite a lot of leverage involved thanks to the ample support provided. It’s easy to start going too hard or fast, and the control is entirely in the hands of the giver, so communication is key.

How to perform anal sex

As with everything, make sure you can walk before you run. Everyone’s first foray into anal will be different - some may relax with ease whereas others will find it difficult - but don’t worry, we’ve got your back.Here’s a guide to anal which includes 4 tips that’ll have you performing like a pro in no time:

Go slow and steady

Anal sex shouldn’t hurt if you’ve lubed up enough, turned up the heat with some foreplay, and started out nice and gentle. A little bit of discomfort on your first try isn’t necessarily anything to be afraid of - but if it’s too much, you should probably stop.

The tip of the penis is usually the widest part (the same is true for a lot of dildos, too) so take your time. Once it’s in, you’ll be able to relax and give yourself over to the pleasure.

Try and relax your muscles

This can be easier said than done, but we promise it’ll make the whole experience more pleasurable. Try to relax and constrict your bum muscles as much as possible - kind of like an anal edition of a Kegel workout. If you’re really struggling to relax on a physical level, it may be a sign that anal sex isn’t for you.

Don’t mix it up too much

By all means swap between different anal positions, but you need to be careful if you’re combining anal with any other sexual activity. Your hand, mouth, penis, and toys can easily transfer bacteria - so if any of these have been *up there*, they’ll need to be cleaned thoroughly before they go anywhere else, like the vagina. Don’t double dip.

Keep essentials handy

Did we mention that you need lube for anal sex? Third time’s a charm! Even if you’ve applied plenty beforehand, it’s always wise to keep the tube nearby for quick re-application. It’s also a good idea to keep some wipes handy just in case. Even if you’ve cleaned and prepared properly beforehand, there isn’t likely to be any evidence, but it’s good for extra peace of mind. Remember to keep your toys clean, too!

What to do after anal sex

The deed is done, and we’ve hope you had an incredible time with the use of our anal guide. When it’s done right, anal sex should be fun and pleasurable for both involved. Now it’s time for the aftercare; a step that should not be skipped in any healthy relationship.

Take a trip to the bathroom - Once you’ve finished, the receiver will probably feel the need to head to the bathroom. It doesn’t matter whether you ‘go’ or not, but it’s important to have a quick wipe down anyway.

Talk about it - If it’s your first time trying anal sex, you should talk about it with your partner. It’s important that you both, not just the receiver, let each other know how it was. Were you into it? Was it uncomfortable? Is it a definite no-go, or do you think another position might work better? Of course, don’t be afraid to say that it wasn’t for you. You shouldn’t be pressured into doing something you don’t like. Any partner who cares will understand that.

Any lasting discomfort? - It’s perfectly normal to feel a little ‘strange’ back there, especially if it’s your first venture into the unknown, and this should clear up soon. But, no matter how un-sexy it is, if you’re left with any lasting discomfort, pain or bleeding after anal sex, you should pop in to see your GP or a professional at a sexual health clinic. We know it may be embarrassing, but you really can’t ignore this sort of thing. Your health is far more important than a few seconds of being red faced, and we guarantee that they’ve heard it all before.

Time to explore...

We hope you found our ultimate guide to anal sex useful and now you have all the information and advice you need you can decide if getting fruity with the booty is for you! Explore your own body with confidence and find out what you like with our anal masturbation guide, the perfect place to start as a solo anal beginner.

Take a look at our Anal Toys