The 4 Best & Safest Anal Lubes That Will Do Your Booty Good

Anal sex and butt play can be lots of fun — but don’t forget the lube! Discover what makes a great anal lube, ingredients to avoid, and the best available.
Rear Photograph Of Swimsuit-Clad Woman Standing In Ocean Water With Wave Brushing Against Her Buttocks

In A Hurry? Our Top 4 Anal Lube Picks

A lubed-up back door leads to unforgettable anal sex! So, if you’re ready to jump right in, let’s take a look at the very best anal lubes.

Note: All of our recommendations are free from parabens, capsaicin, benzocaine, and added fragrances, flavors, and dyes. These ingredients can be irritating or toxic and some can increase the chances of developing an anal infection, as we’ll discuss. We also did not include any products that contain THC or CBD.

A body-safe anal lube can lower the risk of STD and STI transmission by reducing friction, making penetration easier while preventing injury to the anus.

When choosing the best anal lubes, we considered texture, consistency, performance, ingredients, allergens, and additives.

As a result of strict safety and performance criteria, finding the best and safest anal lube is difficult, which is why there are only a few options that we can fully recommend. We are not aiming for quantity, but quality and safety.

You’ll also note that for now, NO water-based anal lubes met these strict criteria.

Click on a product name to jump directly to that product review, or start at the top.

Best Silicone-Based Anal Lubes:

Best Oil-Based Anal Lube:

*When you purchase a product using an affiliate link, we earn a commission at no extra cost to you. Thank you in advance for your support!

The anus doesn’t lubricate itself naturally which is why it’s so important to use a good anal lube — one that is long-lasting, slippery, and safe for your body.

There’s no denying that anal sex feels the absolute best when there’s plenty of lube involved but it can take time and research to find the perfect lubricant for your needs.

Through our thorough research, we’ve found the best and safest anal lubes.

In this review of everything you need to know about anal lubes, we’ll cover:

Editor’s Note: This article is part of our Anal Lube Alternatives and Everything Lube hubs, in-depth and evolving resources that comprehensively explore 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.

The Best Anal Lubes Available Right Now

Choosing the right anal lube requires a bit of forethought. Before you select one, you’ll need to ask yourself:

  • Will you be using condoms and if so, what kind?
  • Will you use it with sex toys and if so, what are they made from?
  • Do you have allergies or sensitivities to certain ingredients?
  • Do you mind if a lube stains your sheets or clothing?
  • Will you be using it in the bath or shower?

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

Lube Type:
Water-Based
Oil-Based
Silicone-Based
Condom Types All Polyurethane, nitrile and lambskin only All
Sex Toy Types All All but latex All but silicone
Bath/Shower Use No Yes Yes
Does It Stain? No Yes Yes
Lube Type:
Condom Types
Sex Toy Types
Bath/Shower Use
Does It Stain?
(👉 ...scroll for more)

Features to consider when choosing an anal lube:

  • Texture: Lubes made from silicone or oil tend to be thicker and more slippery; water-based products are generally lightweight and feel more like natural lubrication.
  • Consistency: Those made using silicone offer the most slickness, followed by oil-based and water-based lubes.
  • Natural Ingredients: It is always better to use lubes with high-quality natural ingredients that won’t cause irritation.
  • Few (Or No) Additives: Ideally, you want to look for a lube that keeps its ingredient list short and sweet.

You may be wondering whether you should use a numbing lubricant to make anal sex more comfortable.

As we’ll talk about later, we strongly suggest that you avoid desensitizing lubes because they can mask pain being caused by injury.

That said, one of our recommended products below relaxes anal muscles without removing sensation entirely.

Editor’s Note: As of the time of publication, no water-based lubes specifically designed for anal sex met our strict criteria. Here’s why.

We’ve broken down our top anal lube picks by category:

A Note On Our Ratings:

All of our recommendations are free from parabens, capsaicin, benzocaine, and added fragrances, flavors, and dyes. These ingredients can be irritating or toxic and some can increase the chances of developing an anal infection. We also did not include any products that contain THC or CBD.

A body-safe anal lube can lower the risk of STD and STI transmission by reducing friction, making penetration easier while preventing injury to the anus.

When considering the best anal lubes, we considered texture, consistency, performance, ingredients, allergens, and additives.

As a result of strict safety and performance criteria, finding the best and safest anal lube is difficult, which is why there are only a few options that we can fully recommend. We are not aiming for quantity, but quality and safety.

Editor's Note: All products reviewed by Women’s Health Interactive are independently researched, vetted, brand-neutral, and deemed to be the very best in their category.

We do NOT accept sponsored or paid reviews.

We are able to fund our team and maintain high editorial standards, objectivity and independence by earning affiliate commissions (*) when you purchase a product that we recommend, at no extra cost to you.

Thank you in advance for your support!

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Best Silicone-Based Anal Lubes

Our top silicone-based anal lubricant picks:

Silicone lube is made from silicones — which are body-safe — and does not dry out like water-based lube. It feels silky smooth and provides an extra-slick glide that feels awesome during anal sex.

Silicone-based personal lubricant is ideal for anal sex thanks to its long-lasting durability and extremely slippery feel.

It’s luxurious, decadent, and feels wonderful with sex toys, but it isn’t safe to use with toys also made from silicone, as it will degrade their materials.

If you plan to have anal sex with a fluid-bonded partner (and aren’t allergic to silicone), a silicone-based anal lube might be a great fit. It is very silky and soft, and it never dries out, so it’s bound to last as long as you do.

The silicone lubes recommended in this list are specifically created for anal sex because they are thick in texture and limited in ingredients.

Pjur Analyse Me! Silicone-Based

Top Pick!
Pjur Analyse Me! Silicone-Based
4.7
$29.99
Pros:
  • Jojoba Oil Adds Cushion, Comfort And Is Highly Moisturizing
  • Will Last As Long As You Do
  • Doesn’t Get Sticky
Cons:
  • Stains Easily
  • Can’t Be Used With Silicone Sex Toys
  • Luxury Pick; Is A Bit Pricey
Bottom Line: This glidey lube was specifically designed for anal sex and is free of preservatives. The addition of jojoba oil makes it extra slippery and highly moisturizing.
Buy Pjur Analyse Me! Now
When you purchase a product using an affiliate link, we earn a commission at no extra cost to you. Thank you in advance for your support!

Pjur is a European brand based out of Wasserbillig, Luxembourg. They make high-quality lubricants and are known for making awesome anal lubes.

Their Analyse Me! Silicone-Based personal lubricant has a short and sweet ingredient list and is preservative-free.

One reviewer mentioned how this product finally made anal sex possible.

“I was an anal first-timer and I must say I was impressed by this product. I’ve tried other lubricants and was never able to complete the process,” they said.

“Everything happened within seconds,” they continued. “I took it all! And the best part is my boyfriend and I both didn’t feel any kind of numbness.”

Analyse Me! feels extremely slippery and is soft to the touch. This lube was specifically made for anal sex, so it’s thick and cushiony.

It does stain easily, so be sure to put a towel down before using it. Additionally, like all silicone lubricants, it can’t be used with silicone sex toys.

Learn more* about Analyse Me! or check pricing*.

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Sliquid Silver

100% Waterproof; Maximum Slip!
Sliquid Silver Silicone Lubricant Sliquid Silver Silicone Lubricant
4.5
$24.99

[NOTE: This product is often hard to find and out of stock. We've linked to a vendor that has it in stock as of this writing.]

Pros:
  • Made From The Highest-Grade, Ultra Concentrated Silicone For Maximum Slip
  • Completely Waterproof
  • No Flavor Or Fragrance
Cons:
  • Only Available At Online Retailers (Linked for your convenience)
  • Some Reviewers Didn't Like The Texture On Bare Skin
  • Will Stain Fabrics
  • Can’t Be Used With Silicone Sex Toys
Bottom Line: Sliquid Silver Silicone Lubricant is a silky, lavish personal lubricant that will get you in a sensual mood. Made from 100% pharmaceutical-grade silicones, this lube is great for those with sensitive skin.
When you purchase a product using an affiliate link, we earn a commission at no extra cost to you. Thank you in advance for your support!

This ultra-concentrated silicone lubricant is ideal for anal sex because it doesn’t have an extensive ingredient list and is very long-lasting.

Sliquid Silver is nice and thick which provides a lovely and slippery cushion for anal penetration. Its limited ingredient list — 100% pharmaceutical-grade silicones — is especially ideal for people with sensitive skin.

Click on the image below to watch a quick video about Sliquid Silver:

Screenshot Of YouTube Video About Sliquid Silver Silicone Lubricant

One reviewer sums up the quality of Sliquid Silver in their review:

There is nothing available in the regular retail market that compares with Sliquid. There are several options to choose from, but this feels natural and is not sticky.”

Another reviewer was completely honest with their experience when they said, “I bought this lube specifically for shower sex. It does not disappoint. Unfortunately, shower sex usually does.”

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

This product is also great for long-lasting anal sex sessions because it doesn’t dry out — it will last as long as you do.

It never gets sticky or tacky and always stays smooth, all the way through to the end.

If you’re looking for a sexy and silky anal sex experience, Sliquid Silver is worth its weight in gold.

Learn more* about Sliquid Silver or check pricing*.

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Pjur Backdoor Silicone Personal Lubricant

Relaxes Without Numbing!
Pjur Backdoor Silicone Personal Lubricant Pjur Backdoor Silicone Personal Lubricant
4.3
$29.95

[Note: Get Pjur Backdoor Silicone Personal Lubricant for only $22.46. Use code "WHI25" and get 25% off from Adam & Eve — a specially negotiated discount we secured after independent review.]

Pros:
  • Relaxes Anal Muscles Without Numbing You
  • High Concentration Of Jojoba Oil Is Highly Moisturizing
  • Limited Ingredient List Is Great For Those With Sensitive Skin
  • Waterproof For Long Lasting Shower Sex
Cons:
  • Applicator Can Be Messy
  • Stains Easily
Bottom Line: Pjur Backdoor Silicone Personal Lubricant is ideal for anal sex because it relaxes anal muscles to minimize discomfort without reducing sensation. The preservative-free formula is made with only four ingredients, so it’s sure to provide comfort for even the most sensitive of backdoors.
When you purchase a product using an affiliate link, we earn a commission at no extra cost to you. Thank you in advance for your support!

Pjur Backdoor Silicone Personal Lubricant is a great choice for those with sensitive skin, particularly because it’s only made with four ingredients.

Jojoba oil gives this lube a thick consistency that makes it perfect for entering the backdoor, and because the oil is highly concentrated, helps to relax the anal muscles without making you completely numb.

Click the image below to watch a video about Pjur Backdoor:

Screenshot Of YouTube Video About Pjur Backdoor Products On YouTube

While we do not endorse the use of desensitizing anal lubes because it can lead to serious injury, this particular lube can help to soothe and relax your butt to help ease penetration.

You’ll still feel everything during anal sex — so you don’t have to worry about being oblivious to injury.

One reviewer said:

“My husband loves anal but it was always SO uncomfortable and painful for me. He’s also quite large. After using numerous brands, I thought that I might just not be able to do anal. After doing a lot of research I found this, I wanted to enjoy it and make him happy. Last night we used it and wow what a difference it made! It was enjoyable for both of us!! We will definitely be keeping this in stock and anal will happen more often now.”

Because Pjur Backdoor Silicone Personal Lubricant is silicone-based, you can also have fun using this lube in the shower or hot tub when you’re in the mood for some steamy sex!

Learn more* about Pjur Backdoor or check pricing*.

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Best Oil-Based Anal Lube

Oil-based lube is excellent for anal sex because it never dries out and is extremely moisturizing. Often made using naturally-derived oils, this type of lube is not safe to use with latex or polyisoprene condoms.

Some oil-based personal lubricants can be used as a massage oil, so it’s like getting a 2-for-1 product!

We’ve only included one oil-based lube because it’s truly the best pick for anal sex. It is slippery, long-lasting, extremely hydrating, and free of unsafe ingredients.

AH! YES Organic Plant Oil-Based Lubricant

Top Pick!
AH! YES OB Natural Plant-Oil Based Personal Lubricant
5.0
$21.99
Pros:
  • One Of The Few Lubricants That Meets The Soil Association’s Organic Standards, Certified As 99% Organic
  • Extremely Hydrating And Long-Lasting Because It’s Oil-Based
  • Waterproof
  • No Added Flavors, Fragrances, Or Dyes
  • Great For Vaginal And Anal Sex
Cons:
  • Not For Use With Latex Condoms Or Dental Dams
  • Squeeze Bottle Instead Of Pump Dispenser, Which Could Be A Con For Some
  • Sweet Almond Oil Or Sunflower Seed Oil Could Be Allergens To Some
Bottom Line: The best in natural and organic lubricants, AH! YES OB Natural Plant-Oil Based Lubricant is an organic lubricant that you can feel good about using in more ways than one. This product is great for anyone who wants a hydrating, waterproof lubricant made with the very best ingredients.
Buy AH! YES OB Now
When you purchase a product using an affiliate link, we earn a commission at no extra cost to you. Thank you in advance for your support!

AH! YES Organic Plant Oil-Based Lubricant is the best of the best oil-based lubes on the market right now.

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.”

It is made with safe and hydrating ingredients that are sure to add lots of comfort and moisture to your most sensitive backdoor bits. It is thick in texture which helps to alleviate penetration-related pain.

As with all oil-based lubes, never use this one with latex or polyisoprene condoms because it breaks down their materials.

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

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

Click the image below to watch a quick video about AH! YES OB:

Screenshot Of A Youtube Video About Ah Yes OB Oil-Based Lube

It soothes and heals sensitive genital tissues, which is why this particular lube is great for anal sex. It is supremely moisturizing, and since it’s oil-based, it never dries out.

This lube 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 allergies, because this product uses sweet almond and sunflower seed oil.

Learn more* about AH! YES OB or check pricing*.

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Why Is Anal Lube Different Than Other Lubes And Why Should You Use It?

Photo Collage Of Four Anal Lubes: AH! YES OB, Sliquid Silver, Pjur Analyse Me! And Pjur Backdoor

You might think you can use any personal lubricant for anal sex and although that can sometimes be true for certain products, lubes designed specifically for anal use are always a better choice — and we’ll explain why.

In this section, we’ll talk about:

Why Should You Use Lube For Anal Sex?

Since the anus isn’t naturally moist like a vagina, anal lubricant 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 STD and STI transmission by reducing friction, making penetration easier while preventing injury to the anus.

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.

Silicone lubricants are by far the safest and most common anal lubes available, and with good reason. They feature a thick, super-slippery texture, they’re long-lasting, and they work with all condom types.

One study discovered that some lubricants can actually increase your risk of STDs and STIs and those using water-based lubricants during anal sex were more prone to infection.

Water-based lubes tend to have a lighter consistency that may not always provide enough cushion for anal penetration — increasing the risk of injury and subsequent infection.

That isn’t to say all water-based lubes are inappropriate for anal sex — far from it — but it is important to find and use the right ones. As we’ll talk about later, truly safe water-based anal lubes are hard to come by.

In fact, as of the time of publication, there were no water-based lubes specifically designed for anal sex that met our strict criteria. Here’s why.

Beyond silicone and water-based products, oil-based lubricants can be a good option for anal sex, although certain condoms don’t pair well with them and can increase your risk for infection during anal sex.

This is because oils break down condoms made from latex or polyisoprene. Oil-based lubricants can only be used with polyurethane, nitrile, and lambskin condoms safely.

When you’re looking for an anal lubricant, it’s important to choose a quality product that will do your booty good.

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How Is Anal Lube Different From Regular Lube?

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

  • Their pH balance is higher, if water-based: The pH balance of water-based anal lubricants is typically higher than vaginal lubes. That’s because the pH of the anus is higher than that of the vagina.
  • Their texture is thicker: Anal lubricants have a thicker consistency compared to other lubes. 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.

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How Does Anal Numbing Or Desensitizing Lube Work?

Desensitizing or numbing lube is a controversial product among sexperts and doctors alike.

This type of lubricant is meant to numb the anus to dull pain and minimize discomfort.

That sounds good — in theory.

However, we don’t recommend using desensitizing lube because it can cause confusion with your body’s natural pain receptors and lead to injuries.

​​Dr. Justin Lehmiller is a social psychologist and the host of the Sex and Psychology Podcast and a member of our medical review board, he advised people to be very careful when using numbing lubes. He said:

“While [desensitizing lubricants] may temporarily increase comfort, too much desensitization can lead people to engage in longer or more aggressive sex than they otherwise would have, which can create a risk for injury.”

Especially during anal sex, the indication of pain is an important signal that lets our body communicate that something is wrong.

When you can’t feel an injury as it’s occurring, you won’t stop doing the activity that is causing it. In many cases, you’ll have no idea that anything is wrong until it’s way too late.

Additionally, desensitizing lube contains potentially unsafe numbing ingredients such as lidocaine or benzocaine.

These compounds can be irritating to rectal tissues and cause major discomfort, which we’ll cover when we talk about safe and unsafe ingredients found in anal lubes.

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Will Anal Sex Make Your Butt Bigger?

Anal sex will not make your butt bigger but it’s a reasonable thought. Though the rectum does stretch during anal penetration or when using a butt plug or anal toy, it won’t permanently make your butt larger.

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What To Look For In An Anal Lube & Safety

Photograph Of Woman Holding A Bottle Of Pjur Analyse Me! Silicone Anal Lube

There are a few factors to consider when you’re looking for a quality anal lube.

In addition to seeking out a lube that is specifically designed to make anal sex enjoyable and kind to your delicate tissues, you’ll also want to watch out for harmful ingredients like glycerin, methyl parabens, flavoring, or scents that can be irritating or damaging.

In this section, we’ll talk about:

What Should You Look For In An 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
Oil-Based
Silicone-Based
Condom Types All Polyurethane, nitrile and lambskin only All
Sex Toy Types All All but latex All but silicone
Bath/Shower Use No Yes Yes
Does It Stain? No Yes Yes
Lube Type:
Condom Types
Sex Toy Types
Bath/Shower Use
Does It Stain?
(👉 ...scroll for more)

The way you intend to use an anal lube has a direct impact on the choice you should make when selecting the best one for yourself.

Not all anal lubes are compatible with condoms or sex toys, they may not be equally effective during sex in the bath or shower, and some of them will even stain your sheets or clothing.

Each of those factors is an important consideration you need to make before purchasing an anal lube.

We’ll explore every type of anal lube in descending order, beginning with those that have the greatest potential for incompatibility (oil-based) to the least (water-based).

  • Oil-based lubricant is not safe to use with latex or polyisoprene condoms because it degrades their material. It’s only safe for condoms made from polyurethane, nitrile, or lambskin, although the latter doesn’t offer protection from STDs or STIs.

That being said, if you’re having unprotected sex with a fluid bonded partner, using an oil-based lube for anal sex is a great idea since it’s extra long-lasting and highly moisturizing.

Oil-based lubes also can’t be used with latex anal toys, as they’ll degrade their materials, and they will stain your sheets. They won’t dissolve in water so if you’re using them in the bath or shower, staining won’t be an issue.

  • On the other hand, a silicone-based lubricant is safe for all condom types but it will break down silicone sex toys, such as those that might be used during pegging or other anal play. Like oils, silicone stains fabric and can also be used in the bath or shower.
  • ​​Water-based lube is the safest option when using condoms and toys because it’s compatible with all types of materials, but it can’t be used for sex in the bath or shower because water will dissolve it on contact.

Because their base ingredient is water, however, water-based lubes won’t stain fabrics.

As of the time of publication, however, there were no water-based lubes designed for anal sex that met our strict criteria. Click here to find out why.

When shopping for an anal lube, it’s also important to consider:

  • Texture/consistency: A thicker, jelly-like consistency will create a more cushiony feel which can improve comfort during anal sex.
  • Natural ingredients: It is always better to use lubes with high-quality natural ingredients that won’t cause irritation. An organic lube is a great choice.
  • Allergens: This is a particularly important consideration for oil-based lubes, as many use oils derived from nuts. Always check the ingredient list to spot things you may be allergic or sensitive to.
  • Additives: Ideally, you want to look for a lube that keeps its ingredient list short and sweet. Those with added fragrances or dyes are best avoided because they can irritate rectal tissue.

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What Are The Safest Ingredients For Anal Lube?

When you’re choosing an anal lubricant — or any lube, for that matter — you always want to select a product that uses the safest ingredients.

Safe anal lube ingredients include:

  • Water
  • Silicone (that does not include cyclomethicone, which we’ll talk about later)
  • Plant-based oils
  • Vitamin E
  • Aloe vera

It’s worth it to pay a little extra attention to what’s in your anal lube because the anus is so rarely exposed to anything but its own environment.

Particularly if you have known allergies and you’re selecting a lubricant that uses plant-based oils, you should make sure to read the ingredient list very carefully.

Many plant-based oils used in personal lubes are derived from nuts or other sources that can potentially cause allergic reactions.

Additionally, aloe vera contains natural latex.

Although quality manufacturers take steps to ensure that all of the latex is removed from the plant’s gel, it can cause a reaction in those with a latex allergy if it was not done so thoroughly.

We’ll talk about this in greater depth later on, but it’s important to select a lubricant that won’t disturb your rectal pH.

With that in mind, it’s best to go with well-known brands that use high-quality ingredients, and those derived from natural sources whenever possible.

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What Anal Lube Ingredients Are Unsafe And Should Be Avoided?

Every booty deserves extra care and attention, which is why steering clear of harmful ingredients is essential.

Unsafe anal lube ingredients you should avoid include:

  • Petroleum: Commonly found in Vaseline or Aquaphor, petroleum or petroleum jelly is the same compound that’s found in plastic bags and gasoline. This is definitely not something you want inside of you!
  • Methylparabens: Often used as preservatives for cosmetic and pharmaceutical products, parabens are not safe to ingest and can be highly irritating to your genitals.
  • PERC (or perchloroethylene): PERC is known as a “dry-cleaning fluid” because it’s also used for dry cleaning clothing. This ingredient should be avoided because it’s been classified as a​​ carcinogen.
  • Cyclomethicone: Often used in silicone lubricants, Cyclomethicone is an endocrine disruptor and should not be used internally.
  • Polyethylene glycol: A sugar alcohol commonly used in toothpaste and other household items, polyethylene glycol is high in sugar and can alter the pH of your perfectly balanced genitals and lead to infection.
  • Benzocaine: This chemical is a numbing agent found in desensitizing lubes that can cause irritation to the skin or internal damage if you can’t feel injury as it’s occurring.
  • Lidocaine: Another numbing agent found in desensitizing lubricants, this can also lead to irritation of delicate rectal tissue and mask signs of injury during anal penetration.
  • Glycerin: This compound is used as a thickening agent in lubes and is frequently sourced from animal fats and soybean oil. It’s not safe to use in or on your genitals because it’s high in sugar content which could lead to bacterial growth and cause yeast infections and irritation.
  • Mineral oil: Untreated mineral oil has been classified as a carcinogen and isn’t a safe ingredient in lubricant.
  • Flavoring or fragrances: Added flavoring or fragrance is too harsh for your butt since it’s high in sugar and can lead to bacterial growth and infection or irritation.

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Why Does The pH And Osmolality Of An Anal Lube Matter?

You may have heard the terms “pH” and “osmolality” before but brushed them off as being some sort of science-based mumbo-jumbo.

When it comes to water-based anal lubricants, however, pH and osmolality matter greatly.

A typical and healthy rectal pH is between 7 and 8 which means that anal lubricants should be in a higher pH range, as well, between 5.5 to 7.

The pH of vaginal lubes is generally around 4.5, however. The difference in pH might not sound like much but it is important to consider — using an anal lube with a pH that’s too low can lead to rectal irritation and possibly infection.

To ensure that you’re not throwing off the very important pH levels in your anal cavity, be sure to use a lube that is designed and marketed specifically for anal sex — one with a pH between 5.5 and 7.

Lube osmolality matters just as much as pH. Osmolality refers to the concentration of ingredients that are not water.

Lubricants that go beyond the WHO’s recommendations and standards for lube osmolality can potentially irritate your rectum and lead to irritation or infection.

As we mentioned earlier, pH and osmolality only affect lubricants that are water-based.

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  • Are Anal Lubricants Approved By The FDA?

Personal lubricants of any type and regardless of their use during sexual activity are classified as “Class II medical devices” by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA).

To that end, lube manufacturers have to register their products for 510(k) clearance unless they are exempt from requiring this.

The exemption relates to the way the product is marketed and intended for use. If it is listed as a “personal moisturizer” rather than a “personal lubricant,” it is exempt from requiring 510(k) clearance.

Regardless of having the clearance or exemption, the FDA has considered the product and you can trust that it’s approved for sale in the U.S.

If you’re curious about anal lubes or other personal lubricants you own or are considering, the FDA provides a searchable database for investigating the 510(k) clearance of any lubricant.

All of our anal lubricant recommendations have either a registered 501(k) clearance certificate on file with the FDA as of this writing or were exempt from providing one.

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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.

We deeply research every product before deeming it safe — or not.

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

Studies suggest that glycerin promotes yeast infections by killing good bacteria and yes — anal yeast infections are a thing.

Then, those products that don’t contain glycerin often include unsafe ingredients like guarana and ginseng, which could be irritating — so those cannot be considered, either.

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 anal lubes typically fail.

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.

The very few remaining products that have safe ingredients, appropriate pH, and safe osmolality are either unavailable at this time or they are from new and/or unreputable companies we are still gathering information on.

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

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Anal Lube Alternatives: Safe (And Unsafe) Home DIY Remedies

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.

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In Conclusion

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

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.