If you're a fan of penetrative sex, anal stimulation can be an exciting new way to receive pleasure from or give pleasure to a sexual partner. Considering the taboo nature of this type of play (especially among straight women), though, many people who are interested in exploring this type of pleasure are of unsure of where to begin or which sex toys, like vibrators and dildos, to invest in. This uncertainty is particularly concerning with anal sex, given the fact that your rectum, unlike your vagina, is not self-lubricating. This increases the likelihood of injury when jumping into anal sex and anal vibrators without proper preparation (like having your lube of choice ready).
Still, this doesn't mean that pleasurable anal sex is beyond reach! Keep scrolling to check out our best tips, tricks, and anal toys for a safe and overall booty-ful experience.
Anal Tips for Beginners
Zachary Zane, a sex columnist and sex expert for P.S. Condoms (opens in new tab), recommends that if you're new to anal stimulation, you ease into it. "You definitely would like to start with something small," he advises. "A tiny butt plug or prostate massager is great for folks new to anal stimulation. I'd get a toy made from silicone instead of metal since silicone toys typically have a little bit more 'give.' Once you start getting comfortable with the butt plug, you can graduate to dildos, anal beads, anal hooks, and the like."
Meanwhile, Vanessa Smith, Director of Marketing at sex toy brand Emojibator, boils beginner anal exploration down to three key requirements: Communication, lubrication, and relaxation. "Get comfortable discussing anal play with your partner(s) and make sure they are too. If you're on your own, get comfortable thinking about it (and you can talk with yourself before/during/after play)," she says. And, on a logistical level, she adds, "Make sure you empty your bowels before indulging in any kind of anal play," so that you don't have to have any especially challenging conversations with a partner.
In terms of lubes, Smith says that this step is absolutely essential. "Remember: lube, lube, and more lube (but not numbing lube)! You want to be able to tell when something feels off or painful, so avoid numbing lube." In particular, she recommends Emojibator's Phuksaus Water-Based Premium Lube (opens in new tab) and/or their Phuksaus CBD Pleasure Gel (opens in new tab).
Finally, try to relax and remember that sex is supposed to be fun! Smith advises that, whether you're alone or using a sex toy with a partner, you should try stimulating other erogenous zones while exploring anal play. "Make sure you're aroused when trying anal stimulation," Zane agrees. "You can stimulate your vagina or penis while using [a] toy in your rear end. And do your best not to clench. Lastly, take, big deep breaths! Try to relax!"
"Relaxation makes all the difference," Smith admits, and suggests trying anal stimulation in the bath or shower. The setting will help assuage any anxieties about making a mess, and Smith says that "warm water can help relax the muscles even more."
Deals on Anal Toys
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Happy Rabbit Small Rechargeable Vibrating Bunny Tail Butt Plug 4 Inch
$30 $9 | Lovehoney (opens in new tab)
Not only is this vibrating anal plug perfect for beginners, but it's also playful-looking and a breeze to clean.
CalExotics Dr. Joel Premium Prostate Massager
$30 $23 | PinkCherry (opens in new tab)
Beginners love this massager for how it gently probes the p-spot without stretching the rectum uncomfortably.
The Best Anal Sex Toys
- Best Overall Beginner Anal Toy: B-Vibe Anal Massage and Education Set (opens in new tab)
- Best Overall Anal Plug: Njoy Pure Plug Large Stainless Steel Butt Plug (opens in new tab)
- Best Overall Vibrating Anal Toy: We-Vibe Vector Vibrating Anal Plug (opens in new tab)
- Best Overall Anal Beads: Lovehoney Beaded Black Anal Dildo with Suction Cup Base 6.5 Inch (opens in new tab)
- Best Overall Anal Dildo: Tracey Cox Supersex Glass Dildo Set (opens in new tab)
Best Anal Toys for Beginners
There are many anal toys made with beginners in mind, and we've rounded up some of the best. Per Zachary Zane's advice, you should start small and consider thin, silicone toys, or relaxing tools like prostate massagers (just because women don't have prostate glands, doesn't mean they can't enjoy these). In a similar vein, Vanessa Smith recommends anal beads, plugs, and training kits made for beginners.
But before you add a drawer's worth of anal toys to your cart, remember to explore the rectal area yourself (or with the help of a partner) first! "Start small by using just a finger with lots of lube then move up to toys," Smith agrees. After all, silicone's great, but there's nothing quite like skin-on-skin.
Best Anal Trainer Set for Girth
This kit comes with three plugs of steadily increasing lengths and widths, so that you can calmly, carefully explore anal play without hurting yourself. Several reviewers, who identify as beginners to anal play, cite this set as "perfect," "amazing," and "comfortable."
Pros: made for beginners; something for everyone (of all experience levels); affordable; easy to clean; three toys for the price of one
Cons: some users don't find the plugs flexible enough; not compatible with silicone lube
Customer Review: "Neither my boyfriend nor I had tried anal play before—this kit was very easy to use, comfortable, and soft. Great for beginners. Both my boyfriend and I tried it, it cleans very well as well." -Bellesa Boutique
Best Prostate Massager
This toy includes 10 vibrations and is completely waterproof, so you can experiment slowly in the tub. Featuring a convenient finger loop, the product gives "beginners and experts alike the opportunity to explore new sensations whether solo or with a partner."
Pros: 3 vibration speeds and 7 vibration patterns; waterproof; free of latex and phthalates; remote-controlled
Cons: not compatible with silicone lube
Customer Review: "This little thing is really great. It’s perfectly shaped, it wiggles, and it vibrates! What more can you ask for?" -Lovehoney
Best Customizable Anal Trainer Set
True to form, this silicone set is accessible, washable, and "makes it easy to work your way up." Reviewers love the number of toys that come in this set, saying that it allows them to gradually work they way up to girthier toys at their own pace.
Pros: easy to clean; intended for beginners; five toys for the price of one
Cons: not compatible with silicone lube
Customer Review: "These make AWESOME anal sex easy! I now prefer anal over vaginal sex! Amazing!" -Bellesa Boutique
Best Instructional Beginner Anal Kit
We love safe sex and educated decision-making, which makes this the set of our dreams! Not only does it come with multiple anal toys and lubricants, but it also features a "Guide to Anal Massage & Pleasure."
Pros: made for beginners; educational; non-intimidating; comes with a lot of products
Cons: not compatible with silicone lube
Customer Review: "Best buy ever. Perfect for the beginner in all of us. Good weight, soft and pliable to use. Great instruction and information booklet." -Lovehoney
Best Anal Plugs
Not sure what an anal plug is or what it can do for you? Vanessa Smith has got you covered: "Anal plugs come in all sorts of styles and materials," she explains. "Vibrating anal plugs can help relax the sphincter muscles and stimulate the g-spot or p-spot," which, she points out, makes the toy perfect for beginners.
Best Glass Anal Plug
Looking for a feminine touch? This 4-inch plug boasts a beautiful rose shape that one customer calls "a classy look."
Pros: great for temperature play; pretty; compatible with all lubes
Cons: may not be long enough to suit users who like deep penetration; fragile (made of glass)
Customer Review: "The shape and design is perfect and quite comfortable. Obviously the glass is perfectly smooth and 100% the way to go. The rosebud itself is visually stunning! It makes me feel super feminine and my boyfriend also likes that it’s easy to hold on to. We both really like it! It’s hot! You should get one." -Bellesa Boutique
Best Steel Anal Plug
This stainless steel toy looks a little intimidating at first, but never fear: Multiple reviews assure that it is small-to-medium sized, which makes it great for anal-intermediates.
Pros: great for temperature play; long-lasting; great for all experience levels; free of latex and phthalates; easy to clean; compatible with all lubes
Cons: none found
Customer Review: "First, it’s gorgeous to look at. The design of the head, the handle, the shaft and stainless steel are very attractive. And very easy to clean. Second, with lube, it’s very easy to insert. I pretty much unboxed it, cleaned it, lubed it up and inserted it. The birth of the head hurt a little, so I backed off, let the ache go away and tried a second time. It went in with no problem...Third, I love the fullness and the weight this plug brings...The handle fits nicely between my cheeks and the plug stays in place nicely." -Lovehoney
Best Decorative Anal Plug
One bubbly buyer referred to this toy as a "bootylicious" option that works for solo stimulation, partner play, and even as a wearable toy.
Pros: fun; great for all experience levels; great for partner play; twelve different vibration settings
Cons: may not be long enough to suit users who like deep penetration; not compatible with silicone lube
Customer Review: "Don’t let this toy fool you! The toy is totally washable and it was so much fun surprising my partner with a fun Bun-Bum! Love it and will recommend to anyone wanting to spice it up or just wanting to add to their collection!" -Lovehoney
Best Anal Pump
If you'd like to try an anal pump but want to take your time, this product may be your best bet. One customer advised that it took a few pumps for them to "feel anything," which assures wary buyers that this toy allows users to take pleasure into their own hands.
Pros: great for beginners; great for partner play; great for all experience levels
Cons: some users find it difficult to clean; not compatible with silicone lube
Customer Review: "I was looking for a toy that I could use to help me train to use larger plugs, and this was the perfect solution. It is very easy to use and not too intimidating. The initial feeling of it is rather neutral, but as soon I pumped the size increase was very noticeable. The control over the size of the balloon is great as it allows a steady increase that helps you be able to expand bit by bit." -Lovehoney
Best Vibrating Anal Toys
Not only are vibrators all-around fan favorites in the world of sex toys, but they're also great for those who are just getting started with anal. "Vibrating anal plugs are especially great for beginners," says Vanessa Smith, "because the vibrations help relax the muscles while providing extra pleasure to the sensitive nerves in and around the anus."
Best Vibrating Anal Plug
This toy is recommended by reviewers as an ideal first anal toy. One person in particular gave the item a 5/5 star review, and still said, "if I could give more stars I would."
Pros: great for beginners; easy to clean
Cons: some users find it too girthy; not compatible with silicone lube
Customer Review: "I must say, I was pretty shy when it came to anal stimulation. But it is a really good beginner's toy. The feel is soft and the vibration is smooth. Would recommend." -Bellesa Boutique
Best Slim Prostate Massager
This vibrator has a host of devoted fans, who call the toy their "new best friend" and "best buddy," and even recommend using the toy on a partner.
Pros: great for partner play; great for all experience levels
Cons: some advanced users may prefer a girthier toy; not compatible with silicone lube
Customer Review: "I am new to finding my prostate and I have not been lucky with all the items I have tried but this black beauty got the job done.plus I love that it vibrates different speeds and it is slim so I don't feel uncomfortable during or after putting something in my butt." -PinkCherry
Best App-Controlled Anal Plug
This toy is ideal for both beginners and experienced users and, in the words of one thorough customer, it "allows you to take your pleasure into your own hands with the intuitive app and adjustable curved head."
Pros: great for all experience levels; mobile app allows for easier play
Cons: not compatible with silicone lube
Customer Review: "A wondeful toy. Incredible quality and feels amazing in your hands and inside. Can even be used on a female too. The vibration patterns are really good. Strong and a nice variety of vibrations. Getting it in is no issue, lovely and smooth, just remember to lube up a lot."
Best Beaded Vibrating Anal Sex Toy
This highly original toy produces bubbly, pop-like sensations that reviewers say ease tension and produce a pleasurably full feeling in the wearer.
Pros: unique sensation; waterproof; great for beginners; 7 vibration settings
Cons: short battery life; not compatible with silicone lube
Customer Review: "Anal beads and a plug vibrator—they thought of it all! The 'bubbles' definitely give a pleasurable sensation. The space between each bubble will create a popping feel with each bubble that enters or exists. The vibration gives a nice ease and relaxes any tension. Shower friendly—a plus!" -Babeland
Best Anal Beads
What makes anal beads ideal for beginners and those in search of gradual anal stimulation? Great question! "Anal beads start very small at the insertion point and grow slightly larger and larger as you get closer to the end," answers Smith. This way, you or your partner can work your way up, bead by bead, and stop with ease if the pressure becomes overwhelming.
Best Beaded Anal Dildo
Straightforward and easy to use, customers confirm that this beaded anal dildo is most ideal for anal experts who are accustomed to penetrative rectal stimulation.
Pros: easy to clean; easy to use; suction cup base makes it possible to ride it; free of latex and phthalates; submersible
Cons: girthy, so may be more ideal for experienced users; not compatible with silicone lube
Customer Review: "Well-designed, soft and most importantly, for hands-free play: the suction cup at the bottom of this "tower of pleasure" stays firmly affixed to bath tub tile. The graduated size increase is well-planned." -Lovehoney
Best Anal Beads Set
Reviewers say that this set of beads is perfect for beginners (so long as users start slow and use plenty of lube), but that they're also ideal for users with all levels of experience.
Pros: great for beginners; loops at the end for easy use; durable
Cons: ridged beads may be more time-consuming to clean; not compatible with silicone lube
Customer Review: "I was skeptical at first, but the string of beads is actually pretty long and the balls immediately had a powerful effect on me. But I’m very surprised in a good way. It was a hot experience and that was definitely not the only one." -Satisfyer
Best Bejeweled Anal Beads
This set of beads is ideal for beginners, because it is on the smaller side and its beads start small at the tip before gradually increasing in size. The jewel at the end of it is also designed to "make playtime fun" and, it appears, a little more glam than usual.
Pros: great for beginners; fun design
Cons: small, so suited for beginners more so than advanced users; not compatible with silicone lube
Customer Review: "This little booty blinger might be small but it really does feel good. It's naturally limp and takes a bit of effort to get it where it is supposed to go but it does feel nice when it's in place. You can wear it out and about, it won't pop out. The jewel on the end is an added bonus!" -Amazon
Best Thin Anal Beads
Not only does this toy boast effectiveness and safety for experienced users and beginners alike, but it is also "designed to fit comfortably between your cheeks for extended wear."
Pros: suitable for all experience levels; made for comfort
Cons: beads are all the same size, and some users prefer a gradual increase in size; not compatible with silicone lube; some advanced users wish it was girthier
Customer Review: "The Casanova is a great toy for beginners. It’s smooth design delivers the feeling of release as they are pulled out during orgasm." -On Her Back
Best Anal Dildos
Whether you or your partner are into strap-ons, double penetration, or traditional dildos, there are a variety of toys out there that are sure to please. And remember: If you're new to anal sex, start slow! There's no need to rush into any sort of sex act, nor is there any need to engage in the act at all if it's something you're not comfortable with.
Best Strap-On Anal Dildo
This strap-on dildo is double-padded with velvet, which is not only sexy, but optimal for both you and your partner's comfort.
Pros: comfortable for both partners; suited for beginners
Cons: dildo is small (made for beginners), so users who like deeper penetration may want to substitute the included toy with a larger one
Customer Review: "The harness itself is durable and adjustable to fit any size waist. I am more top heavy than bottom heavy and I thought it would be a problem in the tummy area but NOPE! I had some access strap (material) so I kinda looped it in. The dildo is a great size for starters, but you can tell you would have to upgrade the dildo [as you work your way to larger sizes]." -Amazon
Best Triple-Stimulation Anal Dildo
If you're looking for stimulation to your G-spot, rectum, and clitoris, this is the toy for you! Described as "exhilarating," it aims to produce the elusive "trigasm" and, according to dozens of satisfied customers, succeeds.
Pros: unique sensation; soft, comfortable texture
Cons: more suited for experienced users than beginners
Customer Review: "The first time I used this with my partner, I came harder than I have in recent memory and for longer than I ever have before. It is a bit of a process getting it to sit properly but well worth the orgasms. We are relatively new to anal play so this is a super fun way for us to experiment. My partner loves this toy just as much as I do and we have played with it multiple times since purchasing. Would definitely recommend to anyone looking for something new and exciting to try." -Bellesa Boutique
Best Glass Anal Dildos
According to customers, this toys "curves in all the right places" and is exceptionally easy to clean. Plus, the set is gorgeous, and you get two toys for the price of one.
Pros: easy to clean; great for temperature play; two toys for the price of one
Cons: fragile (made of glass)
Customer Review: "I recently purchased this glass dildo set and I am extremely satisfies with its features. The dildos can be used both cold and warm, which allows for a versatile experience. Plus, the set provides a variety of sensations, given that both dildos are double ended." -Lovehoney
Best Steel Anal Dildo
I am flabbergasted by the absolute adoration emanating from this toy's reviews. It is referred to as, among other things, "a must-have," "the greatest sex toy of all time," and a product responsible for an orgasm that one reviewer "didn't think [she] was capable of."
Pros: great for all experience levels; great for temperature play; easy to clean; not compatible with silicone lube; also works for g-spot stimulation
Cons: none found
Customer Review: "Wife’s favorite now. She said it just works into right spots. Gave her best orgasms ever. This was real deal!!" -Lovehoney
For more, visit our Sexual Wellness section, where we unpack topics around consent, kink, sex toys, and more so you can have your safest and very best sexperiences yet.
Meet the Experts
Zachary Zane is a columnist for Men's Health whose work has appeared in Rolling Stone, Slate, The Daily Beast, and more. He's also the author of a memoir, Boyslut, and advocates for the LGBTQ+ community on a national level. Currently, he is based in New York City.
Vanessa Smith is the director of marketing at Emojibator, a sexual wellness company committed to demystifying sexual health and making sex toys less intimidating for beginners. She also runs a sexual wellness coaching business.
Gabrielle Ulubay is an E-Commerce Writer at Marie Claire and writes about all things beauty, sexual wellness, and fashion. She's also written about sex, gender, and politics for publications like The New York Times, Bustle, and HuffPost Personal since 2018. She has worked extensively in the e-commerce and sales spaces since 2020, including two years at Drizly, where she developed an expertise in finding the best, highest quality goods and experiences money can buy. As a film school graduate, she loves all things media and can be found making art when she's not busy writing.
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