Butt plugs are an incredibly common sex toy that do double-duty: They can feel immensely pleasurable and be used as an anal training tool to help you eventually size up to a larger anal toy or penis. Whether butt plugs are a stop on the path to something else or a destination all on their own, here’s what you need to know about how to use this type of butt toy properly.
Editor’s pick for getting started with butt plugs
How to use a butt plug
Learning how to use a butt plug properly can make the experience more pleasurable, whether you’re playing alone or with a partner. Here are some steps to follow to get you started.
1. Choose a butt plug that’s right for you
There are plenty of butt plugs out there that can stimulate you in different ways, or help you graduate to a bigger butt plug in the future. To choose a butt plug that’s right for you, consider such factors as material, weight, size, price, if you want vibration, if you’re a beginner or an advanced user, etc. Ask yourself if you’re using the toy for solo, partnered play, or both. Are you incorporating it into foreplay, is it the main event, or are you using it to add some kink? Considering these things can help you narrow down the options.
2. Opt for a plug with a flared base
A butt plug with a flared base will be easier to control with a hand and keep the plug from getting stuck. You or a partner can grasp the plug by its base to tease the anus and then guide it in (and pull it out) at whatever pace and depth feels good.
3. Lube up the plug
Unlike the vagina, there’s no natural lubrication in the anus and rectum. That’s why lube is a must for any butt toy, plugs included. Silicon lube is especially good for anal play because it’s thick enough for easy gliding in and out — and it’ll typically last longer than a water-based lube (which is often recommended for use with sex toys because of universal material compatibility).
➡ We recommend: Jo H20 Anal Lubricant
4. Relax your body for easier insertion
Relaxation is an especially critical aspect of using butt plugs. The rectum has two sphincters: an external sphincter, which is what a toy first passes through, and an internal sphincter. The internal sphincter doesn’t contract voluntarily, so it needs a little encouragement to open up. Massage with scented oil, masturbation, or oral sex can help loosen you up enough to welcome the plug in.
5. Try a finger before the plug
When using a butt plug for the first time, the smaller, the better. Start by very slowly circling the anus and then sticking one lubed-up finger into the rectum. You can move your finger around to slowly stretch the edges of the anus and tease it for something larger.
6. Trace the rim around the anus before going inside
Use the plug to slowly and lightly trace the anal rim. Doing this before inserting the plug can help with relaxing the muscles and priming the anus for what’s coming next.
7. Go slow when putting the butt plug in
As with any anal toy, take it slow and steady. Apply light pressure while wiggling and guiding the butt plug in and out of your anus. The plug can be inserted all the way to the flared base, but only go as deep as is comfortable.
8. Lean into the plug
Pressing yourself against the plug once it’s inside will help you find the exact angle and pressure that feels the best. It can also help with putting more direct contact on the prostate or against a penis or toy in the vagina.
9. Keep butt plugs clean
All pleasure products should be cleaned before, after, and between uses to maintain good hygiene and toy shelf life. When choosing a butt plug, opt for non-porous materials (e.g., silicon, glass) for the easiest maintenance.
➡ We recommend: Pjur Med Clean Spray
10. Ease your way into bigger plugs (if you want to)
Larger butt plugs equal a fuller feeling, which is a main draw for a lot of people who use them. After starting small, you can introduce successively larger plugs until you reach the size you desire — or feel ready for a larger anal toy or penetration with a penis. Training kits, like this one from B-Vibe, include a range of plug sizes to get you started.
➡ We recommend: B-Vibe Anal Training Education Set
5 tips to maximize pleasure with a butt plug
Once you’ve gotten the basics of butt plugs down, the following recommendations can help you take your experience to the next level.
1. Try dual stimulation while wearing the plug
Simultaneous stimulation of the genitals and butt can create a more full-bodied, blended orgasm. While wearing the butt plug, pay attention to your other erogenous zones. If you have a penis, try stroking your penis while wearing the plug. If you have a vagina, try using a vibrator on your clit while wearing the plug. You might also try double penetration.
2. Remove the butt plug as you’re about to climax
Slowly taking the butt plug out when you’re about to orgasm can create an intense sensation as the nerve-endings in and around your anus will be even more activated.
3. Experiment with weight and material
Butt plugs come in many different forms, including weight and material. Like larger plugs, heavier plugs can also give you a fuller feeling, which can be very arousing. Material can also have a big impact on how a plug feels. For some people, silicon’s softness allows for easier and more comfortable insertion. Harder materials, like steel or glass, might be more of a turn-on for people who’ve been using plugs for a while because of the added pressure on the anus and rectum. You can also experiment with temperature play if you have a glass or stainless steel plug.
4. Incorporate kink and wear it in public
For some individuals or partners, there’s nothing hotter than the knowledge that you or someone else is wearing a butt plug out in the world. While the act in and of itself can feel really sexy, the pleasure it gives adds another layer.
5. Use it with a whip or flogger
Whips and floggers can bring a sexy medium between ass play and BDSM. If you’re a beginner to using toys like these, opt for softer materials and handles that double as dildos so they’re still pleasurable even if a touch of pain doesn’t end up being your thing.
➡ We recommend: Icicles No 38 Glass Handle Whip
How to use a butt plug with a partner
While having a partner isn’t required for butt plugs to provide pleasure, wearing one with a partner — or having your partner wear one — gives you plenty of unique ways to enhance the experience. Here are some of our favorite examples.
Massage is possibly the most relaxing form of foreplay. When leading up to anal play and butt plugs, massage can be especially helpful because it loosens up the muscles and puts the mind at ease.
Combine with oral sex
Another way to loosen the ass muscles up enough for a butt plug is rimming or doggy-style oral sex.
Explore dom/sub play
Butt plugs can be a way for partners to play with power dynamics. The person stepping into the dom role can instruct the sub to wear the butt plug somewhere typically nonsexual as a way for them to assert dominance. The sub can send photos to prove submission.
Sex positions to try while wearing a butt plug
Butt plugs are great for a variety of sex positions because they’re hands-free toys — as long as there’s at least one butt available, butt plugs are an option. Here are just a few positions that can be made even better by the use of a butt plug:
In the spooning sex position, both partners lie down on their sides and face the same direction as the big spoon penetrates the little spoon with a finger, toy, or a penis. If the little spoon has a vagina, the big spoon can penetrate them from behind while the big and little spoon — or just the little spoon — are both wearing butt plugs. If the little spoon has a penis, the big spoon can wear the plug while penetrating the little spoon.
Doggy-style oral sex
This version of oral puts the receiver on hands and knees — and the giver on their knees behind them. Getting into this position allows for full access of both the genitals and the anus, meaning there’s plenty of opportunity to insert a plug while giving head.
One partner lies on their back. The other straddles their face and leans over to reach the lying-down person’s genitals. Adjustments can be made (like adding pillows) to more comfortably fit either partner — and either partner can wear a butt plug while going down on the other for double sensations.
The bottom line
Butt plugs are the most commonly used anal toy for good reason — they’re functional, they’re pleasurable, and they’re versatile. Explore our curated catalog of butt toys to find a butt plug, or another type of anal toy, that’s right for you.