The 18 Best Dildos for Every Penetrative Preference

These products are hard to resist.

purple dildo in a collage
(Image credit: Brittany Holloway Brown)

Along with vibrators, dildos are among the most popular sex toys on the market. Designed for those who enjoy penetration, this classic sex toy is a self-pleasure fundamental. Angie Rowntree, sex expert and founder/director of ethical porn site, even calls dildos the "godfather of modern sex toys, pointing out that "the oldest dildo ever found on an archaeological dig is roughly 28,000 years old." Therefore, she explains, no one should feel bad about craving one, saying, "you aren’t alone at all in your fantasies and nothing is really that new under the sexual sun."

But all of this time, along with the basic nature of the dildo, means that there's been plenty of space for innovation and versatility. Now, dildos come in a huge variety of shapes, sizes, and consistencies, and can be used for partner play, kink, anal play, and more. "Dildos can be made from different types of materials, including silicone, glass, stainless steel, wood, etc," notes Marla Renee Stewart, MA, a sexologist and sexpert for Lovers.  "In addition, they can vary in how they are shaped. They can be made for shorter penetration, longer penetration, or even curved to aim towards the g-spot."

This means that if you're interested in using a dildo, the possibilities are endless: There's no one-size-fits-all toy, and exploring different options will help you find what's comfortable and pleasurable for you. Lovehoney sex educator and pleasure expert Javay Frye-Nekrasova encourages people to look into the many different kinds of toys out there in order to discover what they like best. "If you know that you enjoy penetration and the fullness feeling of being penetrated," she says, "you can just explore different-sized dildos to find the one for you."

Still, while all of this is fantastic news for sex toy enthusiasts, it also means that there is a daunting number of options out there that can easily overwhelm the casual dildo shopper or the sex toy beginner. With that in mind, we've consulted sex educators, therapists, and other experts about all things dildo so that you can go into your shopping experience educated, prepared, and excited about all the pleasure possibilities before you.

Finding the Right Dildo

On a basic level, Javay Frye-Nekrasova defines a dildo as "an insertable toy used for penetration. it can be used for vaginal, oral, or anal penetration. They can vary in terms of shape and design, but generally 'dildo' is used to describe penis-like insertable toys." Therefore, she says, "The first step in knowing if a dildo is a good fit for you is determining how you feel about penetration. If you don't particularly enjoy penetration then a dildo might not be the best for you."

But not all dildos are made alike, of course. Marla Renee Stewart recommends that, when shopping for the best dildos, users keep in mind the kind of stimulation they like and the sorts of sex acts they'd like to use the toy for. Below, we've looked into the best dildos for various types of penetration and experience levels. We've also kept quality in mind, settling for no less than the best, safest dildos around (and yes, homemade sex toys are always a bad idea).

Stewart echoes our concern, advising, "Make sure that you use a quality dildo with body-safe material. Because sex toys are not regulated, it's easy to get a dildo that is toxic, so make sure that you look at the products and what they are made out of." She also reminds us to use lube when engaging in dildo play in order to "make penetration easier and avoid many micro-tears."

In terms of material, both Stewart and Rowntree say to buy from reputable sex toy shops and to ensure that the toys are, according to Rowntree, "body safe and designed for the purpose of penetration. If in doubt, ask the manufacturer." These materials can include body-safe glass, latex, wood, silicone, or metal, though Stewart says, "Silicone is the only material that is a little bendable, so if you want something really hard, then using any other type of material should be good. If you like a little give, silicone is great for that." 

Best Dildos for Beginners

As with all things sex (and life), when it comes to dildos, there's no need to bite off more than you can chew. Frye Nekrasova advises, "It is best to start with a smaller girth and work your way up," suggesting items that are on the conservative side in terms of length and girth. 

Best Lifelike Dildos

While dildos come in all shapes and sizes, and don't necessarily need to resemble penises, Frye-Nekrasova admits that lifelike dildos, which she says "are shaped to resemble and feel like anatomical penises," are "what people generally think of when they hear the word dildo." 

Still, like penises themselves, these dildos come in different sizes and textures. "Some have veins, some are designed to be like circumcised penises, and others like uncircumcised penises." You can even buy dildos modeled after real-life penises (like those of porn stars)!

Best Suction Cup Dildos

Some of the best dildos have suction cup bases that allow them to stay in place during use—a quality especially typical among silicone dildos. Frye-Nekrasova approves, saying, "You can put it in the shower, on a chair, on a mirror, directly on the floor, virtually any hard surface. This can give you peace of mind while using the dildo and cut out some of the workout of having to manually thrust the dildo in and out." Check below for some of our favorite options for hands-free, wrist-cramp-free fun.

Best Dildos for Partner Play

Dildos aren't just for solo play! They can be used to penetrate or to put on a show for a partner as well. Some dildos are even made for simultaneous dual penetration, which is perfect for dual vaginal stimulation, dual anal stimulation, or simultaneous anal and vaginal stimulation. The possibilities are endless, and aren't limited to any one sexual preference!

Best Strap-Ons

According to Angie Rowntree, "A strap-on is a dildo that is affixed to a harness of some kind in order to allow the wearer to penetrate their partner." She goes on to note that "while many people associate strap-ons with lesbian sex, strap-ons are also used by heterosexual couples who want to explore male pegging and/or prostate stimulation, or anyone who wants to penetrate or be penetrated by their partner in this manner." So, if you or your partner are interested in experimenting with strap-on play, you're not alone!

Marla Renee Stewart agrees, assuring, "Anyone can work a strap-on no matter your genitals. It's all about having the right fit for your harness and making sure that you are comfortable in the harness. Typically, finding a harness that can be firm, stay in place, and comfortable is great. You also want one that would be easily washable, wearable, and fits your dildo as you like."

Best Non-Anatomical Dildos

Just because it's a dildo, doesn't mean it needs to look like a penis! Frye-Nekrasova points out that many people enjoy non-anatomical dildos, "which can be more ergonomic or abstract in design and color but still have an aspect to them that allows for focused stimulation when inserted, such as a bulbous head or tip." Many of these dildos include "glass and other non-porous, harder material dildos," along with "ones that have a specific curvature for pinpointed stimulation and intricate designs for enhanced stimulation."

Best Vibrating Dildos

A g-spot stimulator is penetrative, so can it be classified as a dildo?

"Technically yes and no," answers Frye-Nekrasova, who says that vibrators designed specifically for g-spot stimulation are not dildos, whereas those designed for "deep penetration" are, in fact, dildos. "In terms of vibration, there are vibrating dildos and you can find a wide variety of anatomical-looking vibrating dildos as those are most common."

Still confused about what to ask for when you're shopping for your toy? Rowntree reassures, "If you go to a sex toy shop and ask for a 'g-spot dildo that vibrates,' undoubtedly someone will be able to help you. Don’t worry: there are no dildo police who would withhold pleasure if you’re having a hard time figuring out what it is that you want."

Best Anal Dildos

Dildos can be great for those who enjoy anal stimulation—particularly that which mimics penetration by fingers or a penis. However, not every toy is an anal toy. According to Angie Rowntree, who also reminds us to never insert toys into the vagina after using them to engage in anal play, says, "Anal toys, including dildos, are usually clearly denoted by the manufacturer, and generally speaking will also have a 'flared' base for safety." This flare, notably, is made in order to prevent the toy from getting sucked into the rectum. In fact, Marla Renee Stewart calls the rectum "a vacuum," and that sex toys without widened or flared bases "will go in and have a hard time coming out."

Furthermore, many anal vibrators and anal dildos are better suited for anal play for other reasons. "Dildos with more bend and flexibility to them do well for anal play as the positioning of the body," says Javay Frye-Nekrasova. "Dildos that are smaller in terms of girth are better for people just getting started in penetrative anal play and this is because the anus has muscles called sphincters that have to be trained to stretch for more girth." 

Best Fantasy Dildos

Frye-Nekrasova describes fantasy dildos as those "designed to look more like dragons or aliens or other sci-fi/fantastical creatures." And there's nothing new about this sort of fantasy: One need only look to classical mythology, like Greek myths of gods seducing women while in the form of animals, as well as art like Katsushika Hokusai's "Dream of the Fisherman's Wife," to understand that people have long found sexual appeal in a variety of fantastical places, both within and beyond the natural world.

Lucky for out generation, fantasy dildos are widely sold across sex toy retailers. According to Frye-Nekrasova, "These dildos come in a wide variety of colors and designs from super girthy to sparkly to a combination of shapes and sizes in one," so you can pluck your fantasy from your imagination and bring it straight to your bedroom. 

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

Angie Rowntree
Angie Rowntree

Canadian-born Angie Rowntree is an award-winning indie filmmaker who pivoted into ethical porn when she founded, a porn site that exclusively produces ethical, feminist material. The site has won numerous awards and is the longest running feminist porn site on the internet.

Javay Frye-Nekrasova
Javay Frye-Nekrasova, MEd

Javay Frye-Nekrasova, MEd, is a sex educator, pleasure professional, and sex expert for Lovehoney. Specializing in pleasure, communication, and sex toys, she is passionate about making comprehensive sex education accessible for all and is in the process of earning a PhD in Human Sexuality from the California Institute of Integral Studies. Her research focuses on sex work, porn, as well as the relationship between the media and society's understanding of sexuality. She also provides sex education via YouTube and social media for her digital series, In Bed With a Millennial. You can find her on Instagram here: @MillennialSexpert.

sex expert Marla Renee Stewart
Marla Renee Stewart

Marla Renee Stewart, MA is a professional sexologist and intimacy/relationship/sex coach. In addition to working as a speaker and author on these topics, she is also a sexpert for the sexual wellness brand Lovers ,owns a sexual education company called Velvet Lips, and is a faculty member at Clayton State University, where she teaches Sociology and Women’s and Gender Studies. Co-Founder of the Sex Down South Conference and a board member of both PARK Reproductive Justice NOW! and the Diverse Sexualities and Research Education Institute, Stewart is passionate about bringing together diverse voices in order to spread sexual education and liberation.

You may also know Stewart from the media: She has been featured on over 60 podcasts and and television shows, making appearances on the likes of Netflix’s Trigger Warning with Killer Mike, VH1's Love & HipHop Atlanta, GPB's Personal Injury Court, and Oxygen's Bad Girls Club: Atlanta. In addition, she also sits on the Boards for SPARK Reproductive Justice NOW! and the Diverse Sexualities and Research Education Institute.

Gabrielle Ulubay
Beauty Writer

Gabrielle Ulubay is a Beauty Writer at Marie Claire. She has also written about sexual wellness, politics, culture, and fashion at Marie Claire and at publications including The New York Times, HuffPost Personal, Bustle, Alma, Muskrat Magazine, O'Bheal, and elsewhere. Her personal essay in The New York Times' Modern Love column kickstarted her professional writing career in 2018, and that piece has since been printed in the 2019 revised edition of the Modern Love book. Having studied history, international relations, and film, she has made films on politics and gender equity in addition to writing about cinema for Film Ireland, University College Cork, and on her personal blog, Before working with Marie Claire, Gabrielle worked in local government, higher education, and sales, and has resided in four countries and counting. She has worked extensively in the e-commerce and sales spaces since 2020, and spent two years at Drizly, where she developed an expertise in finding the best, highest quality goods and experiences money can buy.

Deeply political, she believes that skincare, haircare, and sexual wellness are central tenets to one's overall health and fights for them to be taken seriously, especially for people of color. She also loves studying makeup as a means of artistic expression, drawing on her experience as an artist in her analysis of beauty trends. She's based in New York City, where she can be found watching movies or running her art business when she isn't writing. Find her on Twitter at @GabrielleUlubay or on Instagram at @gabrielle.ulubay, or follow her art at