Sex

Srsly: How do you talk about anal with your partner?

Backdoor lovin' 101.

By Katie Stow
anal conversation starters

Anal play is the one sexual subject that's guaranteed to put the 'oooh' into 'taboo'.

Sometimes fear of rejection, judgement or a negative reaction means the subject of anal foreplay or anal sex is never broached. But good sex is all about communication, and talking as openly as you can about fantasies and boundaries can bring you closer together. After all, you may discover shared fantasies and turn-ons you never knew about…

Why you should give anal a go?

"The entrance to the anus is packed with nerve endings, so it’s highly sensitive for anyone, regardless of their sexual orientation or gender, and there’s no reason why you shouldn’t explore if you’re intrigued," suggests Lovehoney sexpert, Coco Cameron.

What should I say first if I want to try anal?

It’s quite likely that you’ve talked around the subject slightly, and you have a vague idea about what your partner is into — whether he’s a whips-and-chains kinda fella, or a pretty vanilla guy.

If he's been sheepish when it comes to booty time, then you’re going to have to handle this one carefully. Perhaps a good way to start is by removing the closeness to the subject and say something like, “I saw this article on Cosmopolitan last week about all the benefits of anal sex. To be honest, I was quite surprised about what I found out!”

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This is a way to open up the conversation and get a sense of whether he could be in to it (or not) in a kinder way — rather than straight up asking “Hey man, I’m keen to give anal a go. You in?”

Another conversation-opener is to start talking about what you want to do in bed together. This could be a factual chat or a bit dirty talk-esque in bed or over text. Start slowly and mention things you want to try — like, “I want us to massage each other”, or “I want to put a blindfold on you”. Then, if you think they’re ready for the booty bombshell, then drop it.

What anal sex toys should I buy for my first time?

Be sure to talk about buying anal sex toys together, so there is no pressure on either partner. Remember to be honest, say why you're interested and listen to what your partner has to say too. Keep the conversation light and jovial, so no one will feel offended if there is any rejection, or if your partner is spooked by something you’ve picked out.

If you take your partner by surprise, they may run for the hills. So please don’t whip out a 10-inch long strap on, as even though anal sex is a common fantasy, it's not shared by all, so diving in deep with a hectic dildo may ruin your chances of ever getting any booty love.

What you can do, once you’ve got the all-clear from your partner, is buy a nice starter pack, or some individual anal play toys to get you going. Obviously, it’s a good idea to start small, so go with ‘beginners’ category toys first.

Here are Cosmo’s best sex toys for anal beginners:

Navigate the beaded, buzzing world of anal play with this beginner's kit. Four toys treat your new 'bot on the block to a selection of nerve-tingling sensations, with added vibrations for that extra-pleasurable oomph! Lovehoney Get Starter Beginner’s Anal Kit, $59.95 from Lovehoney.

With its slim, tapered, flexible form, this bad boy is designed purely for first time anal. Doc Johnson Crystal Jellies Anal Starter Dildo, $11.37 from Lovehoney.

For a perfectly rounded out collection for easing into anal play, try The Booty Box, $60 from Unbound.

And, of course, you’re going to want to lather yourself with lube before insertion, so try out this Lovehoney Discover Water-Based Anal Lubricant, $19.95 from Lovehoney.

…Or if you don’t want to tie yourself down to just one lube, arm yourself with a bunch of fancy ones! Lube Box, $18 from Unbound.