The 4 Best Anal Lubes: After Hands-On Testing During Butt Play

We spent 28.5 hours of real-world testing by our team during anal sex to find the best lubes that make butt play slippery, comfortable and a whole lotta fun.
four silicone and oil-based personal lubricants tested and recommended for anal sex: gun oil, ah yes ob, sliquid silver, organic glide
We independently research and vet everything we recommend. Our team is supported by affiliate commissions. Learn more →
Updated:February 2024

Our Top Anal Lube Recommendations:

Best Overall (Silicone)
Best Overall (Oil)
Also Good (Silicone)
Also Good (Oil)
$30.95 (4 oz)
$27.99 (4.7 oz)
$34.00 (4.2 oz)
$22.95 ($9.18 / Ounce)
Description:

Bottom Line: Our consensus top-rated silicone anal lube hits the bullseye every time providing long-lasting slippery-smooth velvety comfort during all forms of butt play with minimal need for reapplication, even in water and during extended anal sex sessions. Don’t let the bullet-like (and über-macho) bottle design stop you from picking this one up — its formula was a clear winner for our anal aficionados. [Full Review + Video]

Description:

Bottom Line: Extremely hydrating and long-lasting thanks to a rich formula that includes skin-loving shea butter and vitamin E, this lube is our top oil-based pick for anal use. Although it is incompatible with latex and polyisoprene condoms (as all oils are) and cannot be used with latex or rubber toys, the texture of AH! YES OB is incredibly thick and lotion-like, requiring little in the way of reapplication. [Full Review + Video]

Description:

Bottom Line: This ultra-concentrated premium formula uses three of the slickest pharmaceutical-grade silicones available and requires minimal reapplication, even during extended use. With just a few drops applied, the silk-like texture goes on smooth and reduces friction while heightening sensation. Our testers loved its lasting endurance and versatility in water and the bedroom. [Full Review + Video]

Description:

Bottom Line: Made with all-natural ingredients, Organic Glide’s thick texture melts into friction-reducing magic when used as an anal lubricant. A little bit goes a long way with impressive staying power, although it cannot be used with latex or polyisoprene condoms, nor with latex or rubber sex toys. While oil-based lubes can be a mess to clean up after, Organic Glide washes out of fabrics easily and does NOT stain — at all! [Full Review + Video]

Best Overall (Silicone)
$30.95 (4 oz)
Description:

Bottom Line: Our consensus top-rated silicone anal lube hits the bullseye every time providing long-lasting slippery-smooth velvety comfort during all forms of butt play with minimal need for reapplication, even in water and during extended anal sex sessions. Don’t let the bullet-like (and über-macho) bottle design stop you from picking this one up — its formula was a clear winner for our anal aficionados. [Full Review + Video]

Best Overall (Oil)
$27.99 (4.7 oz)
Description:

Bottom Line: Extremely hydrating and long-lasting thanks to a rich formula that includes skin-loving shea butter and vitamin E, this lube is our top oil-based pick for anal use. Although it is incompatible with latex and polyisoprene condoms (as all oils are) and cannot be used with latex or rubber toys, the texture of AH! YES OB is incredibly thick and lotion-like, requiring little in the way of reapplication. [Full Review + Video]

Also Good (Silicone)
$34.00 (4.2 oz)
Description:

Bottom Line: This ultra-concentrated premium formula uses three of the slickest pharmaceutical-grade silicones available and requires minimal reapplication, even during extended use. With just a few drops applied, the silk-like texture goes on smooth and reduces friction while heightening sensation. Our testers loved its lasting endurance and versatility in water and the bedroom. [Full Review + Video]

Also Good (Oil)
$22.95 ($9.18 / Ounce)
Description:

Bottom Line: Made with all-natural ingredients, Organic Glide’s thick texture melts into friction-reducing magic when used as an anal lubricant. A little bit goes a long way with impressive staying power, although it cannot be used with latex or polyisoprene condoms, nor with latex or rubber sex toys. While oil-based lubes can be a mess to clean up after, Organic Glide washes out of fabrics easily and does NOT stain — at all! [Full Review + Video]

03/04/2024 07:58 pm GMT

The best butt stuff starts with a high-quality anal lube and ends with…well, we’ll just leave that one to your imagination.

Fun Facts:

After 89.5 hours of cumulative research and hands on-testing — 28.5 of which were spent by our team doing a lot of butt stuff — we’ve determined that the best anal lubes are GUN OIL (silicone-based) and AH! YES OB (oil-based) based on their satisfying performance, features, and price.

We’ll share all of our team’s top picks along with those that didn’t make our list, and explain why anal lube is SO important.

Because of safety and formulation concerns, no water-based lubes made our list.

Our Research, Testing & Review Methodology:

  • Anal Lube Requirements: 100% body-safe ingredients, trustworthy brand, quality formula that enhances anal sex while preventing rectal injury, longevity during use, condom compatibility (when possible), and a user-friendly bottle design.
  • Not On Our List: No water-based anal lubes met our strict safety and ingredient criteria.
  • Anal Lubricants Considered: 192
  • Products Tested: 7
  • Tested By: Justin Perlman, Vanessa Russell, Chris Fernandez
  • Total Research Time: 89.5 hours over 2+ years (as of 2/24/2024)

Best Silicone-Based Anal Lubes

Silicone lube is made from body-safe silicone ingredients and is ideal for anal sex thanks to its long-lasting durability and extremely slippery feel.

Compatible with all condom types, silicone-based lube will degrade silicone toys so if your favorite pegging dildo is made from that material, you’ll want to cover it with a condom first (or use a silicone-friendly sex toy).

Best Overall (Silicone): Gun Oil

Best Overall (Silicone)
GUN OIL
4.7
$30.95 (4 oz)
Pros:
  • Long-Lasting, Comfortable Lubrication
  • Soothing Vitamin E And Aloe Vera
  • Minimal Reapplication, Waterproof
  • Compatible With All Condom Types
  • Developed By Marines
Cons:
  • Packaging Is Not Subtle
  • Marketed Almost Exclusively To Men
  • Cannot Be Used With Silicone Sex Toys
  • First Time Opening Can Be Frustrating
Bottom Line: GUN OIL may be a little over the top with its packaging (and marketed primarily toward men), but it is a fantastic way to keep things running smoothly when anal sex is on the menu regardless of gender. Waterproof and compatible with all condoms, our testing team found that this lube lasts for an exceptionally long time while staying silky for maximum enjoyment and the addition of vitamin E and aloe vera provides soothing moisturization for even those with the most sensitive skin.
$16.99 @ Lovehoney –> CODE: AFF-WH15 $26.99 @ The Enhanced Male

This ultra-concentrated silicone lubricant is ideal for anal sex because it doesn’t have an extensive ingredient list and is very long-lasting — just don’t let the slightly obnoxious bottle design dissuade you from trying it.

photograph of gun oil lube on table top

GUN OIL has a smooth and mildly thick texture which provides a lovely, slippery cushion during anal play.

Its limited ingredient list, which includes vitamin E and aloe leaf extract, is especially ideal for people with sensitive skin.

Developed by Marines, GUN OIL has a pretty interesting story behind its creation, being based on actual gun oil that was regularly used for masturbation by servicemembers while they were stationed far from home:


One of our team members really liked this silicone lube, noting that:

“[GUN OIL] was far and away better than all others I tested, and I don’t care if you’re a man or a woman. 

When something delivers the results you want (smooth, silky texture that lasts a long time, and feels great during and after sex with no tackiness) that’s all that matters.”

If you’re into water play, GUN OIL is a perfect lube because it’s completely waterproof.

During our testing, we found that it keeps going strong in the shower — far longer than most other silicone lubes we tried.

aerial photograph of gun oil lube droplets on tabletop

It won’t rinse away with water alone, yet it’s easy to clean up with soap and water.

GUN OIL doesn’t dry out or become tacky during use, so you can enjoy a long-lasting anal sex session without needing to pause and find the bottle over and over.

Like a well-oiled machine, this one always stays smooth — all the way through to the end.

Despite its über-macho bottle design (which may not appeal to everyone) GUN OIL is our number one silicone-based anal lube pick based on formula and performance alone.

(If it helps, once you’ve removed the gold plastic from the lid, it looks much less like a bullet.)

photograph of gun oil lube in hand without the bullet-like cap

(If it helps, once you’ve removed the gold plastic from the lid, it looks much less like a bullet.)

Also Good (Silicone): Sliquid Silver

Also Good (Silicone)
Sliquid Silver
4.3
$29.99 (4.2 oz)
Pros:
  • Only Need A Few Drops
  • Highly-Concentrated, Lightweight
  • Pharmaceutical-Grade Silicones
  • Minimal Reapplication, Waterproof
  • Compatible With All Condom Types
Cons:
  • Bottle Cap Can Leak
  • Texture May Be Too Light For Some
  • Cannot Be Used With Silicone Sex Toys
Bottom Line: Sliquid Silver is made from pharmaceutical-grade silicone, which is perfect for those with sensitive skin, and it features a lightweight texture that provides plenty of slip. Still, it may be a little too thin for those who prefer a really thick anal lube. Despite its light consistency, it offers ample staying power for longer anal sex sessions, doesn’t require constant reapplication, and won’t leave a sticky residue behind.
$29.99 @ Lovehoney $27.99 @ HotCherry

With even fewer ingredients than GUN OIL, simplicity is Sliquid Silver’s secret weapon.

The texture is lightweight and more similar to natural lubrication but with exceptional endurance that allows it to stay on without feeling like you’re covered in Crisco.

photograph of sliquid silver lube on fingertip

Lacking any scent or taste and leaving your skin feeling smooth and supple after use, Sliquid Silver is an invisible powerhouse in the bedroom.

One of our testers raved about Silver:

“It was really luxurious, lasted a long time (even after heavy and extensive rubbing on the surface of the skin or during penetration) and yet, when it did finally dry out it left a smooth and silky texture on the skin rather than a tacky weird one like other silicone lubes.

During anal sex, it was not even noticeable (in a good way) and never once needed reapplication.”

While the lube itself works wonders, the bottle leaves a bit to be desired.

photograph of sliquid silver bottle in hand

The cap is prone to leakage. It will leak (of course) if it isn’t closed all the way, but even when closing the cap, at least a small drop of lube will escape from the tip — which then runs down the side of the bottle.

(It’s worth noting, however, that this particular issue is common with Sliquid lubricants, as they all feature the same basic bottle and cap design.)

Overall, Sliquid Silver covers all the bases as a lube for anal intercourse: it has a smooth texture that’s long-lasting, waterproof for shower sex, and feels great on the skin while providing plenty of comfortable lubrication during anal penetration.

Best Oil-Based Anal Lubes

Oil-based lube is excellent for backdoor play because doesn’t it dry out easily and is extremely moisturizing.

Often made using naturally-derived oils, however, this type of anal sex lube is not safe to use with latex or polyisoprene condoms, as oils will degrade their materials.

Best Overall (Oil): AH YES OB

Best Overall (Oil)
AH! YES OB
4.8
$27.99 (4.7 oz)
Pros:
  • 99% Organic Ingredients
  • Thick Texture, Skin-Friendly
  • Extremely Hydrating, Long-Lasting
  • Minimal Reapplication, Waterproof
  • Compatible With Silicone Sex Toys
Cons:
  • Incompatible With Latex Or Polyisoprene Condoms
  • Incompatible With Latex/Rubber Sex Toys
  • Nut/Seed Oils Are Possible Allergens
  • No Pump Dispenser
Bottom Line: The best in natural and organic lubricants, AH! YES OB is a luxurious organic lube that performs beautifully during anal sex — as long as you won’t be using condoms made from latex or polyisoprene. This product features a thick texture and a skin-friendly formula that’s ideal for anyone who wants a hydrating, waterproof lubricant made with the very best ingredients.
$23.79 @ AH! YES –> CODE: WHI $27.99 @ Lovehoney

AH! YES OB is the best of the best oil-based lubes on the market right now.

We loved this lube – and not just for anal sex.

Made with safe and hydrating ingredients that add lots of comfort and moisture to your most sensitive backdoor bits, this lube is thick as hell — which helps to alleviate any penetration-related pain.

photograph of ah yes ob on fingertip

In our experience, it does have a bit of a grainy texture, at least in the beginning until it warms and “melts” from the heat of your skin.

AH! YES OB is made from 99% organic ingredients — which shows the level of care that went into this product’s development.

The same goes for the gorgeous packaging.

The box looks like an expensive cosmetic, while the bottle could be mistaken for high-end lotion at first glance.

photograph of ah yes ob with its box on a red tabletop with plants

In fact, speaking of lotion, during and after use, having this lube on your skin will feel luxurious and supple, with no tackiness or greasy feeling.

As with all oil-based lubes, this one cannot be used with latex or polyisoprene condoms because it breaks down their materials — which is the one major drawback when using it as an anal lube.

It is safe for use with those made from polyurethane, nitrile, or lambskin, although the latter offers no protection against STIs.

AH! YES OB is made with all-natural ingredients including sunflower oil, shea butter, and vitamin E.

AH! YES OB soothes and heals sensitive skin, which is why this particular lube is great for anal sex.

It is supremely moisturizing and since it’s oil-based, it won’t dry out.

photograph of ah yes ob with its box in a hand

As our Editor-In-Chief Alison Huff noted in her personal review of AH! YES OB:

“Initially, I was surprised at just how thick this lube was straight out of the bottle. It felt slightly grainy at first and I was a little worried about how the texture would feel when I was actually using it.

However, I found that rubbing the lube between my hands melted the oils and butters perfectly to give the product a smooth, pleasant, and very rich texture.

AH! YES OB is incredibly slippery. Surprisingly, it wasn’t greasy and once I washed it off, my skin was left feeling velvet-soft and nourished.”

One of our testers was blown away by AH! YES OB after using it as an anal lube:

“Overall, I think this was my favorite lube I’ve tried of any kind — water, silicone, or oil-based…For its intended purpose of anal sex, it passed with flying colors!”

This lube doubles as a massage oil and is also a great choice for shower or bath sex.

Since oil and water don’t mix, this one will stick (and slick) where it needs to while everything else washes away.

Like many oil-based lubes, you’ll want to read through the ingredient list, particularly if you have nut or seed allergies because this product uses sweet almond and sunflower seed oil in its formula.

Based on its performance in the bedroom, however, it’s our top oil-based anal lube recommendation.

Also Good (Oil): Organic Glide

Also Good (Oil)
Organic Glide Probiotic All Natural Personal Lubricant
4.7
$22.95 ($9.18 / Ounce)
Pros:
  • Organic Probiotic & Non-Staining Formula
  • A Little Goes A Long Way
  • Rare Oil-Based Lube That Is Edible
  • Minimal Reapplication; Waterproof
  • Compatible With Silicone Sex Toys
Cons:
  • Incomptabiile With Latex Or Polyisoprene Condoms
  • Incompatible With Latex/Rubber Sex Toys
  • Argan Oil Is A Possible Allergen
  • No Pump Dispenser
Bottom Line: Organic Glide Probiotic All Natural Personal Lubricant is a velvety oil-based lube that enhances almost any sexual activity (including anal sex) and it’s one of the rare edible lubes that can be used in wet environments like the shower. This lube, made from organic ingredients, uses a non-staining formula that won’t wreck your bedding!
Check Price
03/04/2024 07:58 pm GMT

Besides aesthetically gorgeous packaging, Organic Glide shares AH! YES OB’s commitment to using natural ingredients.

Organic Glide comes out of the bottle as a thick and opaque gel that melts into a buttery smooth oil with body heat.

photograph of organic glide lubricant on a fingertip with the bottle on display nearby

Providing both comfort and staying power, Organic Glide is a fantastic natural lube for anal sex as long as you aren’t using condoms made from latex or polyisoprene.

One of our testers was impressed by Organic Glide before they even tried it:

“The moment I poured some onto my fingers and started rolling it around my index/middle finger and thumb, it was like ‘Holy sh*t, this stuff is amazing!

Like, right away you could FEEL the silkiness, longevity, slipperiness, and quality of it.”

Despite being made from botanical ingredients, Organic Glide doesn’t have any odor or taste that might distract you and spoil the mood.

The formula allows for longer bouts of playtime without the need for reapplication and although we’re recommending this product specifically for anal sex, it is entirely safe for vaginal and oral sex, as well.

While most oil-based lubes stain fabrics and can be a pain to wash off, Organic Glide stands out for its easy cleanup — during our testing, we found that it washes out of fabrics easily and does NOT stain.

photograph of organic glide personal lubricant on a white tabletop with a vase, lamp, and box of tissues nearby

We have to wonder if wizards made this product — an oil that doesn’t stain? Who dreamed that was possible?

Our testers noted that although it performs well in the shower (it is waterproof), you generally need to shower after using it if you want to remove it thoroughly from your skin.

Overall, however, Organic Glide is one of our favorite oil-based anal lubes and it’s definitely one worth trying if you’re not using condoms made from latex or polyisoprene.

How We Made Our Picks & Features We Considered

aerial photograph of justin's hands holding a bottle of gun oil silicone anal lube over dark cloth background

When researching anal lubricants and their safety, 192 products were carefully examined by our team, 23 made our short list for possible consideration, and just seven met our strictest criteria for personal testing.

Although common unsafe ingredients eliminated many potential anal lube candidates, all of the water-based anal lubes we found had to be removed from contention.

Why?

As we’ll discuss later on, water-based anal lubes — those marketed specifically for use during anal sex — do not have anal-safe pH or osmolality levels.

For this reason, we focused our recommendations on anal lubes that are silicone or oil-based, and for which pH and osmolality do not apply.

The most important criteria to look for in an anal lubricant include:

  • Natural and/or 100% body-safe ingredients
  • Limited allergens
  • No additives (including numbing agents)
  • Smooth, cushiony texture
  • Optimal performance
  • Minimal need for reapplication
  • FDA approval
  • Compatibility with condoms and sex toys (within reason)
  • Ease of cleaning
  • Water resistance (when applicable)

When selecting the best anal lube, we weighed and tested:

  • How our skin reacted to each formula
  • The way they felt during (and after) use
  • How well (and comfortably) they performed during anal penetration
  • How often they needed reapplication
  • Whether they worked with condoms, prostate massagers, or pegging toys
  • How difficult they were to clean up after use
  • How well they held up when used in water (if applicable)
  • Whether they stained our bedding or other fabrics

Anal Lubes That Didn’t Make Our List

photograph of woman holding bottle of pjur analyse me silicone anal lube

We considered 192 lubricants (of all types) from dozens of parent brands over the past two years.

Most were eliminated immediately for one of two reasons:

  • Unsafe ingredients (namely glycerin or parabens and numbing agents)
  • A pH and osmolality that is not anal safe (water-based lubes only)

We cover the latter in detail here.

Lubes that we researched but didn’t necessarily consider for testing included products manufactured by:

  • Slippery Stuff
  • Anal-Ese
  • Booty Call
  • Wet (Uranus)
  • Tush Ease
  • Mojo
  • Astroglide
  • ID (Xtreme)
  • KY
  • LubeLife
  • And many others…

Not everyone can be a winner, unfortunately, and although we tested a variety of other anal lubes, they couldn’t top our other choices.

The testing was rigorous (and fun) but we’ll take a quick look at the lubes that didn’t quite make the cut.

  • Pjur Analyse Me! (Silicone): Featuring a surprisingly slippery texture that was almost “too” oily, we also found that this one was highly likely to make a mess — and not in a good way. The bottle design is less than discreet but it doesn’t close effectively — which means it easily spills all over the place.
  • Pjur Backdoor: This product is designed specifically for anal sex yet felt tacky very early on — as though it dried out immediately upon exposure to air, causing more friction than it was designed to alleviate. One of our testers experienced slight “bruising” beneath the outer skin layers of his penis due to the increased friction after using Pjur Backdoor while wearing a condom.
  • Intimate Earth Ease: This lube performed well when compared to the Pjur products we mentioned above, featuring a far runnier texture in comparison. Intimate Earth Ease cleaned up easily and it didn’t stain the sheets — which is good, since the bottle cap can leak easily.

Many factors contribute to whether a particular anal lube is a perfect fit for some people and not others but much of it has to do with your personal preferences regarding texture — and whether you’re using condoms or silicone sex toys.

When testing anal lubricants, those factors weighed heavily into the scoring given by each of our testers.

Just as we did when making our final selections, you may need to try a few different products before finding your perfect anal lube.

It is your butt, after all, so find what works best for you.

What To Know About Anal Lubes

Photograph Of Blue-Haired Woman Holding A Bottle Of AH! YES OB Oil-Based Lubricant

Anal lubricants serve a very specific (yet important!) purpose, which is why it’s vital to understand what they do, how they differ from other types of lube, and when (and how) to use them.

What Is Anal Lube?

Since the anus doesn’t self-lubricate naturally like a vagina, anal lube adds moisture to delicate rectal tissues, easing pain during penetrative anal sex, soothing soreness, and increasing pleasure at the same time.

It also makes anal sex safer — which is important and often overlooked.

The right anal lube can lower the risk of STI transmission by reducing friction and making penetration easier while preventing injury to the anus.

It can also help you to avoid poop during anal penetration.

Lubricated condoms, although they do provide a slippery texture, may not have enough lubricant on them for extended anal sex sessions, so you’ll still want to have anal lube handy.

How Is Anal Lube Different From Regular Lube?

Several characteristics make anal lubricants stand out from those used vaginally or orally:

  • Their pH balance should be higher, if water-based: The pH balance of water-based anal lubricants should be higher than vaginal lubes. That’s because the pH of the anus is higher than that of the vagina.
  • Their texture is thicker: Lubes specifically designed for anal sex generally have a thicker consistency compared to other lubricants. This adds comfort and eases pain during deep anal penetration.
  • They last longer: Anal lubes, especially those made from oil or silicone, are longer-lasting than other lubricants. With any quality anal lube, you’ll find that a little goes a LONG way.
  • They feel slicker to the touch: Anal lubes, particularly those made from silicone, typically feel extra silky and smooth to the touch. This creates more glide and reduces friction.
  • Some anal lubes contain numbing agents: Desensitizing or numbing lube is a controversial product among sexperts and doctors alike and this type of lubricant is meant to numb the anus to dull pain and minimize discomfort. However, we don’t recommend using numbing lubes because they can cause confusion with your body’s natural pain receptors and lead to injuries. Additionally, numbing anal lubes can contain ingredients (such as lidocaine or benzocaine) that can be irritating to rectal tissues.

When Should You Use An Anal Lube?

You should use an anal lube any (and every) time you engage in anal penetration.

It is never safe to have anal sex without lube.

Using anal lubricant is easy — apply a few drops to the anus and/or the penis, finger, or toy that will be penetrating it, and reapply as often as needed.

Your mileage may vary depending on the lube’s formula and how long your sexual activity lasts.

When in doubt, apply more than you think you need.

  • When Should You Use A Water-Based, Silicone, Or Oil-Based Anal Lube?

Personal lubricants are available in a variety of different formulas but they do not perform equally in every situation.

Before buying an anal lube, you should first consider the kind of sex you plan to have while using it — and whether it will involve any condoms or sex toys.

Here’s a cheat sheet for selecting the best anal lube based on how you intend to use it:

Lube Type:
Water-Based
Silicone-Based
Oil-Based
Oral Sex Yes Yes Not usually
Vaginal Sex ONLY if pH/Osmolality suitable Yes Yes
Anal Sex ONLY if pH/Osmolality suitable Yes Yes
Condom Types All All Polyurethane, nitrile and lambskin only
Sex Toy Types All All but silicone All but latex
Bath/Shower Use No Yes Yes
Does It Stain? No Yes Yes
Lube Type:
Oral Sex
Vaginal Sex
Anal Sex
Condom Types
Sex Toy Types
Bath/Shower Use
Does It Stain?

Is Anal Lube Safe?

For the most part, yes.

When used as directed and made from body-safe ingredients that you or your partner are not allergic to or sensitive to, anal lube is completely safe.

It is important to understand, however, that not all anal lubes are safe.

One thing we discovered when researching anal lubricants, much to our dismay, related specifically to water-based products being marketed for anal use.

We found several potential products that passed our criteria for safe ingredients with flying colors, however, they failed to reach the necessary pH and osmolality levels required for safe anal use.

Before using any new anal lubricant, it’s a good idea for you and your partner to do a patch test on the inner elbow to monitor the area for potential reactions before using them during anal sex.

Additionally, anal lubricants have a shelf life of between 1 and 3 years.

Why Is It Hard To Find A Safe Water-Based Anal Lube?

Our list of top recommendations for anal lubes includes only products made from silicone or oil — which may leave you wondering about water-based anal lubes.

It’s no secret that our recommendations must meet very stringent requirements for inclusion because your personal safety is very important to us.

The truth is that most water-based lubes contain glycerin, which eliminates the majority of products from consideration entirely.

The water-based anal lubes that actually pass our ingredient test must then pass the requirements for anal-safe pH and osmolality — and this is where the remaining candidates failed.

When anal pH is disrupted by a lube whose pH is too low and better suited for vaginal use, rectal tissue can become irritated or damaged, leaving it more prone to infection.

We performed very deep research and to our surprise and dismay, discovered that several “great” water-based lubes that are being marketed for anal sex have a low pH that is best suited to the vagina — not the anus – or osmolality readings that are inappropriate for safe consideration.

For this reason, we currently do not recommend ANY water-based anal lubricants as safe but are working on finding options we trust.

If you’re determined to use water-based lube for anal sex and have no concerns over pH or osmolality (or the potential risks that may be involved), here are some options we vetted and recommend for non-anal use.

Pros And Cons Of Anal Lube

Anal lube is the best choice when you’re looking for a personal lubricant that will offer a texture that provides easier and more comfortable penetration during anal sex while preventing injury to delicate anal tissues.

If you intend to explore butt play — whether during intercourse or with toys — having an appropriate anal lube on hand is non-negotiable.

Anal Lube Pros:

  • They have a texture that’s thick, allowing for comfortable anal penetration while protecting the anus from injury at the same time
  • They are long-lasting and generally require little-to-no reapplication during use
  • Some products are designed to relax anal muscles through the use of natural oils and safe ingredients, making penetration easier
  • They are waterproof if silicone-based or oil-based
  • They are compatible with all condoms if water-based or silicone-based
  • They are compatible with all sex toys if water-based
  • They are easy to clean up if water-based

Anal Lube Cons:

  • Some anal lubes contain numbing agents (although none of our recommendations do), which can potentially result in unintended anal injury during use
  • If water-based and truly pH-balanced for anal use, they are not compatible with vaginal sex, as the natural pH of the vagina (4.5) is lower than that of the anus (7-8)
  • Those made from silicone or oil may stain sheets and fabrics
  • Those made from silicone are generally not compatible with silicone sex toys
  • If oil-based, they are not compatible with condoms made from latex or polyisoprene and they will degrade sex toys made from latex, rubber, or jelly rubber
  • They are more difficult to clean up if silicone or oil-based

It’s best to stick with specially formulated anal lubes for the reasons we’ve outlined, but in a pinch, there are some mostly safe home anal lube alternatives you can try.

Closing Thoughts

Anal lube makes backdoor loving an extremely enjoyable and incredible experience — whether you’re a beginner or a seasoned pro.

Best Overall (Silicone)
Best Overall (Oil)
Also Good (Silicone)
Also Good (Oil)
$30.95 (4 oz)
$27.99 (4.7 oz)
$34.00 (4.2 oz)
$22.95 ($9.18 / Ounce)
Description:

Bottom Line: Our consensus top-rated silicone anal lube hits the bullseye every time providing long-lasting slippery-smooth velvety comfort during all forms of butt play with minimal need for reapplication, even in water and during extended anal sex sessions. Don’t let the bullet-like (and über-macho) bottle design stop you from picking this one up — its formula was a clear winner for our anal aficionados. [Full Review + Video]

Description:

Bottom Line: Extremely hydrating and long-lasting thanks to a rich formula that includes skin-loving shea butter and vitamin E, this lube is our top oil-based pick for anal use. Although it is incompatible with latex and polyisoprene condoms (as all oils are) and cannot be used with latex or rubber toys, the texture of AH! YES OB is incredibly thick and lotion-like, requiring little in the way of reapplication. [Full Review + Video]

Description:

Bottom Line: This ultra-concentrated premium formula uses three of the slickest pharmaceutical-grade silicones available and requires minimal reapplication, even during extended use. With just a few drops applied, the silk-like texture goes on smooth and reduces friction while heightening sensation. Our testers loved its lasting endurance and versatility in water and the bedroom. [Full Review + Video]

Description:

Bottom Line: Made with all-natural ingredients, Organic Glide’s thick texture melts into friction-reducing magic when used as an anal lubricant. A little bit goes a long way with impressive staying power, although it cannot be used with latex or polyisoprene condoms, nor with latex or rubber sex toys. While oil-based lubes can be a mess to clean up after, Organic Glide washes out of fabrics easily and does NOT stain — at all! [Full Review + Video]

Best Overall (Silicone)
$30.95 (4 oz)
Description:

Bottom Line: Our consensus top-rated silicone anal lube hits the bullseye every time providing long-lasting slippery-smooth velvety comfort during all forms of butt play with minimal need for reapplication, even in water and during extended anal sex sessions. Don’t let the bullet-like (and über-macho) bottle design stop you from picking this one up — its formula was a clear winner for our anal aficionados. [Full Review + Video]

Best Overall (Oil)
$27.99 (4.7 oz)
Description:

Bottom Line: Extremely hydrating and long-lasting thanks to a rich formula that includes skin-loving shea butter and vitamin E, this lube is our top oil-based pick for anal use. Although it is incompatible with latex and polyisoprene condoms (as all oils are) and cannot be used with latex or rubber toys, the texture of AH! YES OB is incredibly thick and lotion-like, requiring little in the way of reapplication. [Full Review + Video]

Also Good (Silicone)
$34.00 (4.2 oz)
Description:

Bottom Line: This ultra-concentrated premium formula uses three of the slickest pharmaceutical-grade silicones available and requires minimal reapplication, even during extended use. With just a few drops applied, the silk-like texture goes on smooth and reduces friction while heightening sensation. Our testers loved its lasting endurance and versatility in water and the bedroom. [Full Review + Video]

Also Good (Oil)
$22.95 ($9.18 / Ounce)
Description:

Bottom Line: Made with all-natural ingredients, Organic Glide’s thick texture melts into friction-reducing magic when used as an anal lubricant. A little bit goes a long way with impressive staying power, although it cannot be used with latex or polyisoprene condoms, nor with latex or rubber sex toys. While oil-based lubes can be a mess to clean up after, Organic Glide washes out of fabrics easily and does NOT stain — at all! [Full Review + Video]

03/04/2024 07:58 pm GMT

That said, all lubes are not created equal, nor can they always be used for every type of sex you want to have.

If anal sex is on the menu, do your bum a solid and use anal lubes that are made from safe and high-quality ingredients — like those we recommended above.

Trust us, your booty will thank you for it.

Editor’s Note: This article is part of our Everything Lube hub, an in-depth and evolving resource that comprehensively explores all aspects of personal lubricants from the different types and how to use them, to ingredients and safety — created to help you achieve the sexual pleasure you deserve.