What Do Anal Beads Feel Like?

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What Do Anal Beads Feel Like?


When you’re curious about new adult sex toys, you can often find a lot of information about it on the internet, right? Size, shape, material, features, texture, etc. But I think we can all agree that when you’re considering a new toy, especially when it’s a type of toy you’ve never tried before, the big thing you want to know is “what does it actually feel like?” This is where all those in-depth product descriptions tend to fall short. 

That’s why today we are going to take the time to really talk about anal beads. Not just what they are and how they work but what using them feels like. From insertion to removal and everything in between, you will walk away from this article about anal beads for beginners with a much clearer picture of the whole anal bead experience. So, let’s get down to it! 


What Are Anal Beads?

I know I just said we were going beyond “what are anal beads,” but, for the unfamiliar, it’s a good idea to start by taking a minute to get clear on exactly what anal beads are. Anal beads are type of adult toy designed to stimulate the many extremely sensitive nerve endings that reside in the anal opening or anus. They can be used by anyone during any sexual activity. Seriously, they are like the seasoning of the sex toy world. You can add them to whatever else is going on to enhance the experience.  

Anal beads typically feature a series of beads or spheres (usually round or oval shaped) attached to a cord. There are also toys that include the orbs on a rigid shaft that till provide an anal bead-like experience.  Anal beads are available in a wide variety of sizes, making them accessible to most folks regardless of experience level. Some anal beads are made up of orbs that are uniform in size while others like Vibelite Grayson 11 Inch Anal Beads start with a very smal bead and increase in size with the largest bead being closest to the base. Others still include randomly distributed spheres of different sizes. 

You can find anal beads made out of all sorts of materials. For folks who want a soft, squishier type of bead jelly, rubber, latex, and my personal fav, silicone are all options. If something harder sounds appealing, there are anal beads made of plastic, silicone, steel, or glass.

Finally, there are anal beads that come with fun options like vibration. Selecting a set of vibrating beads with multiple speed options will allow you to start slow and up the speed/power to see what works for you. Some vibrating beads even come with a remote control so you can hand the power off to a partner. No matter what your anal beads are made of or what other cool features they have, they must, like any safe anal toy, feature a flared base or looped handle to prevent them from going in to deep and becoming lodged in the anus. 


Before Use

Sometimes, especially when we are trying something new, we can have a whole lot of feelings before we even get to the actual experience. This is especially true of sex stuff in general and butt-related sex stuff specifically. Excitement and anticipation are totally natural and normal, but so is apprehension. So before we talk about the actual process of using anal beads, let’s take a minute to explore-- and hopefully assuage-- some of the very common fears that can pop up when we talk about using anal toys


“Will it hurt?”

For people who are completely new to anal play or for folks who have had prior experiences that were unpleasant, the fear of pain is very real and can easily overshadow our playful curiosity. Here’s the thing, though, anal play, when done correctly, should not hurt at all. You should never be gritting your teeth and trying to get through it. You should be enjoying it. In order to do that, I advise folks to try a relaxing warm bath beforehand and then to go very slow and use a lot of lube. Seriously, a whole lot. 

Additionally, if you are engaging in anal play with a partner, be sure it is someone you trust. Trying butt stuff because your partner thinks it will be hot and you feel like you should do it for them tends to not work out great. Make sure you are on the same page and excited to explore together. 

Two things that some folks employ to lessen the chance of pain during anal play that I firmly advise against are alcohol and numbing products. These things will alter your perception of what is happening, so you might not feel pain at the moment, but you could still be hurting yourself. Remember: Clear heads, lubed butts, can’t lose. 


“Will it be messy?”

A lot of folks fear that anal play will involve, frankly, poop, and this isn’t unreasonable. You are essentially knocking on poop’s door, so you can’t be shocked if it answers. If you are worried about this, it’s a good idea to know how to clean anal beads and have a bowel movement an hour or so before playtime. Then you can take a shower (or a bath, as mentioned above) and lay out a towel to protect your bed (just in case). If you want to be doubly sure you won’t encounter any feces, you can read up on how to use an enema, but that is purely a matter of choice, not a mandatory step.


“Does it make me gay?”

 Unfortunately, there are still some cis-het men who believe that anal penetration of any kind is inherently “gay,” and engaging in it will make them gay. Here’s the deal: 

  1. Gay people do not have special homosexual asses that experience things differently. The potential for sexual pleasure from anal play exists in literally every human being.
  2. Nothing can change your orientation without your consent. If you are heterosexual and enjoy butt play you are-- surprise!-- still heterosexual. Exploring anal toys is just another way to enjoy your body. It will not change who you are. Unlike penises or vaginas, butts are a body part that everyone has and for some people putting things in them feels good. If that’s you, enjoy!


Okay, so now that we’ve myth-busted some of the fears that can come with anal play, it’s time to get real about what using anal beads can feel like.


While inserting

Inserting anal beads is completely different from inserting a butt plug or dildo. Those toys stretch the anal sphincter muscle and keep it in a more open position. Because anal beads typically have a slender cord between each bead, the process of inserting them can create a pleasurable sensation that one might describe as “popping.” Each individual bead stretches the sphincter muscle, and then it pops back to its typical closed position once the bead passes it.  Many people find this “pop-pop-pop” sensation to be pleasurable.

When you are ready to insert your anal beads, lube up and start with the first couple of beads to give yourself a chance to try out and get used to and explore the unique popping sensations. 


While going further

Once you have gotten used to the sensation of your anal beads, you might wish to go a little further, perhaps inserting all of the beads on the string. Great! There are a couple of things to keep in mind here. First, as you can probably tell just by looking at them, a string of anal beads can be longer than many other toys you might use anally and thus will go further into your body. Keep your lube nearby, reapply if necessary, and stop if anything hurts. 

Secondly, once they are inserted, anal beads do much; the sexual pleasure in using them tends to come from motion. So if you are using a set of vibrating anal beads, now would be a good time to turn them on. Otherwise, you can experiment with moving the beads in and out, which will make that fun “pop” sensation we talked about earlier keep happening. 

Additionally, anal beads are fun to keep in place during other sexual activities, so don’t be afraid to leave them where they are and have some other types of fun—experiment with bringing yourself to orgasm with the beads in place. Many users report that orgasming with anal beads in is significantly more intense than the typical orgasm. 


While pulling the beads out

Speaking of orgasm, one option for removing your anal beads is to pull them out or have a partner pull them out as you are climaxing. This can significantly amplify the already pleasurable experience and deliver particularly explosive orgasms. 

Even if you don’t tie removing your anal beads to your orgasm, it can still be an incredibly enjoyable experience. Some folks like the intensity of having their beads pulled out by a partner in one intense sweep (picture the motion you would make to start a lawn mower, but pulling out anal beads!) while others prefer taking them out one bead at a time, which brings back the fun popping sensation that we talked about during insertion just in reverse! 

The thing to remember about anal beads is that there’s not really a set destination or specific experience you are aiming for. The only real goal is pleasure so don’t be afraid to experiment, try different things, keep the things that work and scrap the stuff that doesn’t. 

This should give you an idea about what the experience of using anal beads might feel like but remember, everyone is different. Someone else’s “yuck!” might be your “yum!” so know that if you try anal beads and they aren’t for you, that’s fine! If you use them in a different way than we’ve talked about here and you enjoy it, great! As with any sexual experience, you get to find what feels good for you. 

Are you thinking about checking out anal beads or other anal toys, PinkCherry has a huge selection of butt plugs, dildos, beads, probes, lube, and more! Make them your first stop for anal exploration!


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Written By: JoEllen Notte

JoEllen Notte is a writer, speaker, sex educator, and mental health advocate whose work explores the impact of depression on sex and relationships. Since 2012 she has written about sex, mental health, and how none of us are broken on her award-winning site The Redhead Bedhead as well as for Glamour, The BBC, Bitch, PsychCentral, and more. JoEllen is the author of The Monster Under the Bed: Sex, Depression, and the Conversations We Aren’t Having.