How to Have Anal Sex for the First Time

Medically Reviewed by Poonam Sachdev on November 07, 2022
5 min read

Anal sex may seem like a more daunting prospect than it is. With patience and care, anyone involved can have a good time — no matter their gender, sexual orientation, or genitalia. However, many doubts may come to your mind when you’re wondering how to do anal for the first time. So here’s what you need to know.

Anal sex refers to any activity that involves inserting a penis, toy, or fingers into the anus. Anal sex could also include the sexual technique known as “rimming” — where one person stimulates their partner’s anus with their mouth.

Despite the taboo surrounding anal sex, it can be performed and received by any person, no matter their gender or sexual orientation. But having anal sex should be done carefully to avoid hurting yourself or your partner.

Your first time doing anal is a particularly delicate moment, as nerves and lack of experience can quickly get in the way of enjoyment. If you’re considering anal, try to think of any doubts, look for answers online, or ask a licensed doctor. For example, here are some common questions surrounding first-time anal sex:

Does anal sex hurt? A common misconception suggests that anal sex is a painful experience if you’re the receiver. But this isn’t the case — correctly doing anal usually involves little to no pain.

What does anal sex feel like? Unfortunately, there aren’t any clear guidelines regarding what anal sex will feel like for you. Every person will get a different sensation, ranging from pain to extreme pleasure. Furthermore, your experience depends on your genitalia and whether you’re the receiving or the giving part.

Should I use anal sex toys? Despite the taboo surrounding them, sex toys can be the perfect introduction to the world of anal sex. Just make sure to keep them clean by washing them before you use them and by covering them with condoms.

The key to having a good time when trying anal sex is, without a doubt, preparing correctly for it. Knowing what’s going to happen and being ready for anything will go a long way in helping you relax both mentally and physically. This will make for a smoother overall experience.

Preparing for your first-time anal experience involves searching for information online, talking with your partner, and buying a few things. While experienced people may skip some of these steps, here are the essential measures for preparing for anal sex:

Talking to your partner.Trusting your partner is, by far, the most important thing to a successful anal experience. Try to make a special effort to listen to their doubts both before and during the experience, and talk to them about your own questions. Make sure you feel comfortable with all aspects of anal sex before actually trying to do it.

Making sure you’re safe. As with every type of sexual contact, doing anal carries a few safety measures that are crucial to avoiding conditions like HIV. Getting tested for sexually transmitted infections (STIs) is a fantastic way to partially ensure your safety. However, you should also use condoms — even if you’re only using toys.

Buying the necessary things. While condoms may be the first thing that comes to mind when thinking about sex, lube is just as important. The anus isn’t capable of producing its own lubrication, so make sure you buy a lot of water-based lubricants.

As we’ve already mentioned, doing anal for the first time will be different for everyone. Discovering your body and anal pleasure can be a wonderful experience, and you should do what feels the most comfortable. However, if you don’t know where to start, here is a rough guideline of how anal sex usually goes:

  1. Start by doing some foreplay with your partner to warm up. If you want, you can also do oral and vaginal sex at this point, but remember to switch condoms when you want to start with anal.
  2. Slowly explore the anal area by caressing and touching it without penetration. If you’re the recipient, try to concentrate on how it all feels and pay special attention to the good sensations that arise. If you’re the giver, go gentle and constantly make sure your partner is comfortable.
  3. Put a generous amount of lubricant on both the penis and the anus. Then, start penetrating the anus a little bit and pulling out completely. Repeat this until the penis is entirely inside the anus — but make sure to stop at the first sign of discomfort or pain. It’s crucial that both partners feel relaxed, excited, and comfortable.
  4. Finally, try to find a comfortable pace and experiment from there. Anal sex can stop at any time, so don’t feel pressured to last until ejaculation. Instead, feel free to switch to vaginal or oral sex (as always, change the condom) or stop having sex altogether if either partner feels uncomfortable.

While these instructions are written for two partners, keep in mind that the penis can be replaced by a toy or fingers. This means that these guidelines are also valid for couples where neither of the persons has a penis or for people looking to get into anal masturbation.

Like all forms of sexual contact, some risks are involved in anal sex. STIs are a big concern when having anal sex — this is even truer for HIV, as anal sex carries a higher risk of this condition. You can avoid most of these risks by keeping in mind some specific precautions. Here are some of the most important safety tips for anal sex:

  • Use a condom at all times, even if you’re using toys. This will almost completely remove the risk of transmitting STIs both ways. Furthermore, remember that it’s extremely important to change the condom if you want to go from anal to vaginal or oral.
  • Don’t be afraid to use a lot of lube — when doing anal, a lack of lubrication could lead to pain and discomfort. Using too little lube can quickly lead to frustration and physical damage to the anus.
  • Try to relax as much as possible. A tense anus is more prone to not letting anything go through. If you force it, you could end up with a tear in the anus, which could later get infected.
  • Go to the bathroom about 30 minutes before starting anal sex. This will avoid most accidents while also reducing the chance of infection.