It’s always great to get to the bottom of bottoming, but what if you want to tap into topping? While much of the focus on anal play is about being on the receiving end, being a good pitcher to your catcher builds a foundation of trust and communication, which is paramount when someone’s butt is the bottom line. So before you rise to the top, here are some tips for excelling at being a top before, during, and after anal play.
Establishing any firm boundaries of what is off limits with a partner helps take out any guesswork...
Prep It Up
Everybody is different when it comes to preferences with play, so make sure to talk about boundaries and dynamics around anal penetration with your partner. Have they done anal exploration before? If they have, what sort of things feel good to them? Do they prefer feeling full, motion, vibration, or a combination of sensations? Do they want you to be more dominant or nurturing during sex, or both? Talking out personal preferences and establishing any firm boundaries of what is off limits with a partner helps take out any guesswork at the moment, and also will help ease nerves, especially if anal exploration is something new.
Once you’ve done what I like to call the sexual paperwork, then you can prep toys and gear for topping. The most essential item? Lube, of course. Lube is your BFF with anal play since, unlike a vagina, the anus won’t self-lubricate. I like to stick with water-based formulas, so I don’t have to worry about what sex toys I’m using with what lube and making sure they are compatible (not all lubes are compatible with all toy materials, so make sure to check).
For anal, I focus on a thicker lube formula to help it last longer and I find it’s more comfortable too.
For anal, I focus on a thicker lube formula to help it last longer and I find it’s more comfortable too. Sutil’s Rich formula is great for anal play and works really well with sensitive skin. Sliquid has long been a favorite lube brand of mine, and their Sassy formula is made for anal play. Although it isn’t as thick a consistency as some lubes, it still lasts a long time during anal play. I also find having a lube applicator helpful, it just frees up my hands more and is easier for applying during play. It’s not a must, but one of the accessories that make things flow at the moment.
Once you have your lube on lockdown, figuring out what sex toys you’ll be using is next up on the prep list. Spectrum Boutique has a wide range of beginner anal plug sets, and if your booty is new to butt stuff, that is the best place to start. These sets give you multiple size options to work up from or to find a favorite to use. These sets are all safe to use (please, for the love of all that is holy, don’t put things up your butt that don’t have a flared base), and it’s fun to find a favorite as you try out different sizes vs. just buying a single plug.
I also like to keep a wand handy to apply vibration against the base of a plug while it is inserted into someone. It’s a nice way to add a level of sensation without having to invest in a vibrating plug right out of the gate. Just use it externally only. I like to press the head of a wand against the bottom of the base of a plug and rock back and forth to give some vibration and movement against the plug at the same time.
Fingers are great for anal stimulation, but any small hangnail or cut could really hurt the more delicate tissue backdoor...
Outside of lube, I also like to have a few butt stuff essentials on hand nearby: nitrile gloves, wipes, and a squirt blanket or towel. Fingers are great for anal stimulation, but any small hangnail or cut could really hurt the more delicate tissue backdoor, so I always say better safe than sorry and keep a glove on instead. I find it’s also easier for lube cleanup too, if I want to take a lubed-up glove off after using my fingers and switch to a toy, I just peel it away and my hand is clean.
For me, unscented baby wipes are also a must, because literally, shit happens. Poop can be a natural byproduct of butt stuff, although sometimes not, so wrapping up a toy in a wipe after removal is easy to keep things that need to be cleaned separate. I also like to use a wipe to clean up any excess lube that might have spread onto inner thighs or butt cheeks before a partner goes to clean up, it’s just a nice and tender touch of aftercare to clean someone up a bit if they like that. And I always throw down my squirt blanket or a towel for easy cleanup, that way I don’t have to worry about excess lube getting all over the place, because never forget that more lube is better than not enough when it comes to butts.
It’s Go Time
Anal play is a marathon, not a sprint, so once you have all your essentials ready, it’s time to ease into things, both figuratively and literally. Make sure your partner is feeling relaxed. I don’t like to dive right into anal penetration, I find that foreplay is your friend. Making out, massage and oral sex are all great ways to get the body relaxed and in tune with how you and your partner are feeling.
I like to start by massaging around the anus with some lube, just rubbing while kissing and getting someone into a comfortable position for them, whether it be on their back with legs spread open, on their side with a leg propped up, or on all fours with their butt in the air. Whatever feels the most comfortable and relaxing to the person being penetrated is what I go with for positions.
The main goal is anal shouldn’t hurt, so if you have to stop and just sit with a plug-in for a bit, or take it back out, that’s ok.
Once in position, I ask the person receiving if they’d like to see the toys I’ll be using. I find for many folks, especially those new to anal, seeing what I’m working with helps put their mind and body more at ease. Continue to massage with your fingers and then lube up the sex toy you’ll be using, and slowly start to move in a circular motion around your partner’s anus, lightly pressing in and applying gentle pressure. Check-in as you slowly enter to see how they feel, and listen to your bodies. Ask how they are feeling, but also if you feel tension or pushback physically, check in verbally with your partner. The main goal is anal shouldn’t hurt, so if you have to stop and just sit with a plug-in for a bit, or take it back out, that’s ok.
Slow and steady is the way to go. As the body relaxes, keep checking in on what feels good. You can change the pace, switch to a bigger toy if requested, or apply some vibration. Giving someone a hand or blowjob, stimulating their clitoris, or using a toy or penis vaginally for double penetration during anal play is a surefire combo for pleasure as well. There are many ways to mix it up that don’t have anything to do with someone’s butt.
Being a good top is a balance of enjoying yourself but also making sure your partner feels hot and safe in your capable hands.
Praise your partner as you continue, positive reinforcement works in a lot of situations in life, including sex. Enjoy the view, tell them how amazing they’re doing, and lean into the confidence you get as a top at this moment. Because you, as a top, are doing amazing! Once again, communicating to see what your partner is feeling and wanting is required in these moments, because being a good top is a balance of enjoying yourself but also making sure your partner feels hot and safe in your capable hands. And don’t forget, the end goal is pleasure and feeling good, so as long as everyone is having a great time, that is all that matters.
The comedown for everyone is different, so not to sound like a broken record (but hey, it’s a good record!), communication is key.
Enjoy the Afterglow and Care
A well-rounded experience is a positive experience, so I always like to check in with partners, especially if we’re exploring a new type of play for anyone involved, after the initial fun is done. Just basic common courtesy goes a long way: do they need a glass of water, or help cleaning up? Do they want some cuddling or do they prefer some space, do they like to be given praise or to talk about play right after? The comedown for everyone is different, so not to sound like a broken record (but hey, it’s a good record!), communication is key. Asking someone what they need goes a long way to providing good care.
Like most things in life, being a great top takes some planning, a bit of attention to detail, and communication. I find topping not only an incredible boost of confidence but also deeply gratifying to give someone pleasure and empowerment and to take intimate care of their body is truly a power-up. Make sure to enjoy the ride to the top.