Anal Lubricant Advice for Anal Play & Sex

This is just one part of our Anal Sex Advice & Guide to the Anal Only Lifestyle section. Be sure to read the rest as well to get answers to our most frequently asked questions! New! This guide is also now available as a Kindle ebook!

Lubricant of some sort is necessary for almost everyone in order to safely enjoy and practice anal play and sex, but there are so many different options out there that it can be somewhat overwhelming to pick out the best choice for you and your specific needs. In addition, there is so much variation with personal preference over the various properties of lubrication that you may need to try several options before settling on a specific kind for yourself.

This guide will outline the different types of lube and what makes them different.

Water-based lube

These are in some ways the most basic and simplest types of commercial sexual lubricant, and it’s widely available and cheap. Water-based lube is generally safe for most people and applications, but can vary significantly and while some can cause a burning sensation, others will not. You may simply have to experiment with small amounts of several until you find one that works for you. The thickness and consistency can vary between different water-based lubes as well, with some thin and runny, and others thick and gel-like. Some water-based lubes may contain glycerin, which some people are sensitive to.

In addition to the commercial products you can buy pre-made, one more advanced option for water-based lubricant is J-lube, which you can purchase in powdered form in bulk and mix up yourself as needed, for a much cheaper alternative—though it can certainly take some experimentation to find the ideal consistency.

Disadvantages of water-based lube include the fact that it absorbs into the body and evaporates more quickly, requiring reapplication more often. This can be noticeable during longer anal sex or play sessions, as well as if used for butt plug wear, where as the lube dries, the plug may become uncomfortable until you reapply lube. So it’s definitely worth carrying a small bottle of extra lube with you to use throughout the day as needed if doing so!

Silicone lube

A favorite for its high quality lubricating properties, silicone lube doesn’t dry out or get absorbed into the body in the same way as water-based lubes can, and stays effective and comfortable for a much longer period of time. It works very well for sex, play and plugging—but it has one big downside in that it cannot be combined with most silicone toys. If used with silicone toys, it will bond to them and cause a big, sticky mess. It’s perfectly fine for glass and metal toys, however.

Oil-based lube

There are many different options here, including vaseline, baby oil, olive oil, coconut oil, albolene, etc. Many of these things are already available in people’s homes, and so people are often inclined to try them due to ease of access. Most can work, though not all are ideal long-term. Oil-based lubricants will degrade condoms and potentially cause issues with certain toy materials, so don’t use them if using condoms and refer to your toy manufacturer’s instructions for compatibility with the materials used.

Out of the variants listed above, coconut oil is probably the most popular, and is widely used and celebrated. Albolene, sold as a moisturizing makeup remover, is also effective as an anal lubricant.

Natural lube

Though not always as effective as commercial lubricants, the human body produces several lubricating compounds of its own. Saliva is a very obvious choice, which does lubricate even if not quite as long lasting as other options. Vaginal juices are a natural form of lubrication for vaginal sex, which can be used for anal as well. Do take care to avoid contamination of your vagina with an already-used anal toy, however.

And finally, the rectum itself is, despite claims to the contrary, self-lubricating at some level, producing anal mucous. For most people, this is not enough to rely on completely, but there are some people out there who produce greater amounts of anal mucous than others or who may even have production of it linked to their arousal levels, and who need no other form of lubrication. This is not common, but if you find it’s the case for you, consider yourself very lucky!

Other household options for anal lube

A lot of people want to explore anal masturbation but don’t have any anal lubricant and are either unable to get it or don’t want to invest in it before they know if they’ll enjoy it, so they look for existing things to use around the house. Aside from those listed under the oil-based lube category, these are some other options available in most homes.

Do not use soap or shampoo for anal lubricant as they will cause a painful burning sensation.

Some lotions, especially those that are unscented, or cocoa butter and shea butter, can be used for anal play and sex. Experiment with a small amount at first and wait a few minutes to see if it causes a burning sensation. If not, it’s probably okay to use at least for the short term.

Unlike shampoo, basic conditioners usually do not cause a burning sensation, but it’s not designed for internal use and it’s unclear whether it’s a good idea to actually use it long-term as a lubricant.

Once you find that you enjoy anal, invest in a bottle of actual anal lubricant and move beyond these options.

Have a suggestion for an additional topic you’d like to see covered here, or a missing or incorrect detail that you’ve found or have concerns about in one of the guides? Please let us know and we’ll do our best to continue improving these guides over time!