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The Biggest Little Guide to Anal Douching

If you have an ass and you plan to put stuff in it, chances are you’ll want to clean it first. But what do you use, and how the hell does it even work?

Topher Taylor was a shy, clueless 18-year-old when he anally douched for the first time. “I’d just started working at a sex shop,” he recalls, “but I had no idea what it was before then because there was no gay sex education at schools. All I knew was that men got fucked in the ass. I didn’t even know about lube!”

His first experiment came with a cheap, mass-produced bulb douche, a popular tool you use to flush out your butthole before anal sex (basically, you fill it with a cleaning solution, put the nozzle inside your anus and then pump in the liquid to thoroughly empty yourself out). The problem was, the plastic tip on his douche had a small but dangerous bump on it, the impact of which would soon become apparent as he crouched over his toilet and slid it inside. “The plastic had leaked over, and that ended up cutting me,” he says. “Sadly, those things do happen.”

But like a phoenix rising from the ashes of his once-bleeding butt, Taylor has now become a bona-fide douching expert. After years of advising customers in a Soho sex shop, he now represents gay sex toy retailer Clonezone and records his hilariously transparent conversations with adult industry veterans for his cheeky, sexed-up podcast, Sex With Topher.

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Topher Taylor’s Anal Douching Tips

For those interested in a nice butthole rinse, he recommends using a bulb douche with a large opening for water. He particularly stans douches made by Bathmate, Perfect Fit and Bondara, but he does not recommend using your shower head, a common practice many noobs try before they discover the bulb varietal. “Lots of people use their shower head, which I guess isn’t a terrible idea,” he says. “But you’re not going to get a thorough clean because you should insert it at least three to four inches,” which, of course, isn’t the easiest thing to do with a shower head.

Enemas are a more intensive, deeper-cleaning alternative that can reach as far as your lower intestine, but Taylor doesn’t like them either. “It’s a lot of water to hold in your body, so I don’t trust it,” he says. “I used one with an ex-boyfriend and literally a bottle’s worth came flooding out just as he was cumming.” As always, there’s obviously a kink for that — but if the mid-fuck drizzle isn’t what you’re looking for, it’s important to do your research first.

Anyone who does is likely to come across Evan Goldstein, the charismatic founder of Bespoke Surgical who’s known colloquially online as the “bottom doctor.”

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Goldstein famously cautions against using water to douche with and instead recommends isotonic solutions. “Using water or enemas can have significant negative effects,” he explains. “They can disrupt the normal balance of good and bad bacteria that reside [in your rectum], and there’s a chance that micro-cuts and tears can happen.” In turn, this can lead to higher risk of STD contraction. His Future Method formula aims to tackle these issues, and as long as you’re douching responsibly with an isotonic solution, it’s okay to do it regularly.

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Paradoxically, though, too much douching can actually render anal stuff messier. Reddit is filled with stories of anal sex mishaps, and porn star Rebecca More even joked about breaking her butthole on Taylor’s podcast by being too extreme with her douche. Obviously, the occasional residue or weird smell is understandable with any kind of anal sex — as one redditor concisely states, “Bruh it’s an ass, shit happens” — but Goldstein explains that involving a shower head, using too much water in one squeeze or inserting a bulb too far up your rectum can make it seem as though “you hadn’t even douched before.” 

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DIY Douche Disasters

It’s also important to be careful when trying out creative, DIY douches. “I once met someone who was douching with an Evian bottle, and the cap came off!” Taylor recalls. As a result, the unsuspecting customer’s butthole sucked up his makeshift douche. “Things can get swallowed because the muscles in your anus pull things inside when you clench,” Taylor continues.

Another key douching question ties back to diet. Articles out there are dedicated to the “gay bottom diet,” but the reality doesn’t have to be quite so calculated. “It’s common sense,” Taylor says. “If you’re hungover and dehydrated, or if you’re planning on a korma, madras and milkshake, it’s probably not the best idea to have anal.” Similarly, it’s important to know your body and understand what kind of foods can get your bowels ticking, especially if you suffer from something like IBS. 

If Taylor does douche, he explains that he likes to know that he’s clean at least an hour before his hook-up. For anyone worried about getting caught “unprepared,” he recommends douching regularly whether you’re hooking up or not — that way you’ll know how long you take to feel thoroughly clean, and can reduce your risk of getting caught in a time crunch. “Also, if I know I’m going to have sex with someone who is particularly well-endowed, I make sure to drink plenty of water throughout the day to get everything moving through my system,” he explains.

Bottoms Up

Ultimately, there is no universal guide to douching apart from a few basics (if douching is important to you, that is — some people like a messy bottom): Be careful when douching with water or (ideally) use an isotonic solution; don’t plunge too deep; don’t squirt too much water in there at once; find a douche that’s right for you; and try to get into the habit of practicing. 

After all, practice makes for a perfectly clean ass.