The One Thing You Should Know Before Trying Anal

Whether or not you've ever tried anal, it's one of those sexual acts that you probably have a pretty strong opinion about. It seems like you can never have a discussion about anal without having two distinct viewpoints on it. You either love it, or you hate it. Regardless of which side you see yourself on, if you've never tried it, there's one thing you should know before trying anal. Although it may not be for everybody, you definitely want to know how to approach it if it's your first time.

If there's one thing you need to be prepared for when you try anal for the first time, it's lube. And not just any old lube. There are actually specific lubes that are way better for anal sex than others. Because the anus doesn't create its own lubrication during arousal like the vagina does, you'll want to have lube on hand when you try anal for the first time. According to Charley Ferrer, clinical sexologist and author of Sex Unlimited, a silicone-based lube is key to good anal sex, because it's thicker and won't dry out the way water-based lubes can. Aside from relaxing, Ferrer told Prevention that using plenty of lube can truly make or break your experience with anal sex.

Claire Cavanah, owner of sex toy boutique Toys in Babeland, told WebMD that when it comes to anal sex, you'll want a thicker lube. "I think thick lube is great all around," Cavanah said. Because rectal tissue is even more fragile than vaginal tissue, a thicker lube can help reduce friction during intercourse, providing not only a more comfortable experience, but a safer experience too. Cavanah recommended testing out the lube on your fingertips first to test the consistency, and not being afraid of using it liberally. With a thicker lube, according to WebMD, you're more likely to avoid any sexual abrasions that you could encounter during anal sex with a thinner lube, or without lube at all.

If you're using a condom (which you absolutely should use a condom when having anal sex, because you should practice safe sex no matter what kind of sex you're having), you'll want to avoid oil-based lubricants, because they deteriorate latex, according to a study published by the National Institutes of Health. And according to Men's Health, HPV and plenty of other sexually transmitted infections can be transmitted through anal sex, which is why it's so important to use a condom during anal sex, and why it's so important to choose the right kind of lube. Because if you're going to take an adventure into uncharted sexual territory, you want it to be enjoyable and safe, right? The best way to make sure your foray into anal is both of those things is by choosing a lube that works for you and your partner, and not being afraid to use plenty of it.