tashareignbasicsex

Do Porn Stars Actually Enjoy Sex on Set, Or Are They Just Pretending?

And all your other most pressing questions for adult film legend Tasha Reign

Every day, porn star and University of Southern California journalism grad student Tasha Reign wakes up to a curious string of emails from her fans, a devoted group of men and women she lovingly refers to as “Reigndeer.” Said Reigndeer ask her questions — so many questions — about her perspectives on sex, love, relationships and life itself, and as someone who’s had more firsthand experience in these areas than four average adult women combined, she’s become uniquely up to the task of answering them. Every Friday then, Tasha will select a few of these questions and grace us with her insight, advice and expert wisdom in the hopes that she can help you fuck long and prosper.

Do porn stars actually enjoy sex on set, or are they just pretending?
This is definitely the most popular question that I get — people really want to know if the women they’re jerking off to actually like the cock they’re taking. I’m more than happy to speak to that, but I also get the feeling there’s a deeper meaning to this question: if she’s faking it in porn, does that also mean she’s faking it at home?

I can’t speak for anyone else, but I will tell you from my own experience that I’m (usually) not faking it. I enjoy the sex I have on set thoroughly because I’m able to create chemistry between myself and the other talent when I need to. It’s important to me to do this not just for the sake of my own pleasure, but because I want to give an authentic performance (viewers can see through the acting if the connection is completely lacking). Luckily, there’s some amazing talent who make performing a cake-walk, and there have been many times that I’ve walked away feeling like I shouldn’t even get a paycheck because it was so fun.

After all, the best part about porn is that it lets you experience things you wouldn’t necessarily get to at home, like threesomes or eccentric desert sets. That novelty and sense of adventure is crucial, and I’d argue that it actually sets the mood and makes the sex more enjoyable than the actual connection between the performers themselves. If the mood on set is positive and the culture feels supportive and fun — a feeling that trickles down from the director all the way to the makeup artists and production assistants — there’s a good chance I’ll really enjoy the scene.

However, there are some scenes where I’m definitely acting. There have also been times I walked away wishing that I’d made my rate tremendously higher, or that I should have thought about what I committed to more prior to the scene. In those cases, if the culture on set or connection between myself and the other talent is lacking, I’ll try to find something attractive in my scene partner that I can “get into.” It could be their nose, ears, lips — literally anything. That way, there’s some genuine connection there and I can focus on what does turn me on.

So, the short answer to this complex question is that yes, sometimes we fake it. Sometimes, however, we’re so into the sex that we can’t even communicate how grateful we are for it. Most days, it’s a little bit of both. In that way, doing porn is really no different than any other job — most days it’s great, other days it sucks, but the good tends to outweigh the bad, at least enough to keep you there.

I’d say the same thing goes for your own sex life. In any relationship, there are times when you have to put in energy where there is none; when you have to “turn on” when you want to just go to sleep. Sometimes, we do this more for the sake of our partner’s happiness and well-being than our own, but that’s okay — that’s just compromise. For example, there are many times I don’t feel like giving head, but because I like to get head I realize I must give it as well. That’s not to say you should do something you don’t want to (you always get to say no), but as long as doing that thing doesn’t harm you or your partner physically or emotionally, a little “fake it till you make it” is perfectly healthy and normal, both in porn and in life.

Do women just do anal as a special favor to men? Is there any way to make it hurt less?
Great question! In adult movies, anal sex often looks quick and easy, which is why so many people are surprised when it’s painful or one person doesn’t like it in real life. However, how it’s represented in porn couldn’t be further from the truth. We also get no sex education about how to do it correctly, so there’s an assumption it’s okay to just shove something up there with no lube or preparation (part of our preparation as porn stars involves an elaborate stretching routine to make it so we can take the more well-endowed cocks of porn performers).

But let me be clear — there are ways to make anal more enjoyable for everyone involved. So let’s go over a few tricks that’ll help get you and your partner into a sexier and more comfortable place with this once-taboo act.

First things first, discuss whether or not your partner even wants to have anal sex to begin with. While there are plenty of people of all genders who love it as much as I do, some folks will comply with it just to please their partners. If this is the case, it’s more likely to be painful for them — the less aroused and the more nervous they are, the more their anal sphincters will clench and the more painful it’ll be. So before you go anywhere near a butthole, make sure that butthole wants you near it, by checking in and negotiating specific acts and desires.

Provided it does, make sure to eat clean-ish on the day you plan to have anal. Light things like salads or soups help ensure you don’t get too messy down there, and can give you some relaxing peace of mind that you’re probably going to be clean. Eating this way with your partner so that you can both be supportive of one another is a good idea, too. If you want to take extra precautions though, I recommend a nice shower prior to sexy time to make sure your nooks and crannies are smelling delightful. Or, if you don’t have time, a baby wipe will do.

Once you’re all clean, take whatever steps you both need to fully relax. Because the anal sphincters clench when you’re nervous, upset or unaroused, it’s of utmost importance that whoever’s getting penetrated gets as relaxed and loose as they can before you start. The best way to do this is with a massage and some foreplay — this relaxes them and gets them out of their heads and into the moment. I’d absolutely recommend a glass of champagne or wine to set the mood, too. Light a candle, put on some music — for me at least, ambiance is everything.

Next, get your tongue working! Rim jobs are key to opening up the butthole and relaxing your partner’s anus. I love a sloppy rim-job, but I know firsthand that they’re not for everyone. In case you’re not about that life (which I highly recommend you be), get some lubricant and tease the anus with your finger. First, trace around the area, then, when things seem to be opening up — you should feel it start to relax and become more pliable — gently slip a finger in to get it used to having something inside it.

I also highly recommend you help your partner cum before you start penetrating them (I like to cum through my clitoris before deep-diving into anal sex). If you’re with someone who has a vulva, I highly recommend using a Hitachi wand to make this happen during the massage or later when you’re playing with her butthole. Getting your partner to orgasm first can also help them relax, and ensures there’s more circulation in the area, which can help increase pleasure and reduce pain.

Once you’ve gotten them thoroughly warmed up — which can take some time, so be patient — it’s time for the moment you’ve all been waiting for. Apply a liberal amount of lube to both her butthole and whatever you’re penetrating it with, and let her slowly guide it in.

My preferred position for anal sex is side-spoon doggy-style. I like that my partner is in control of the thrusting, but I can easily push into or away from him if I need to. However, for less experienced partners, I’d advise that you let them guide their anus around your cock unless they say to push it in (which I do some of the time). If your partner is nervous and wants to control the situation, I’d say that having them on top in cowgirl position is the best way for them to fully guide themselves onto it.

Once your member has successfully penetrated her anus, the hard part is finished. Once your cock is in, though, don’t just pull it all the way out and push it back in like you see in porn — stick with long, deep strokes (if she’s new to this, it feels more comfortable if you stay in her ass instead of taking it out and putting it back in). Eventually, when it becomes more comfortable and pleasurable for your partner, you can start to take it in and out and switch positions more often, but take it extra slow at first. And remember, since they’re the one getting penetrated, they get to control the depth and pace — no jackhammering unless they ask for it.

Throughout the entire process, remember to communicate — this is part of consent, and is key to making sure they’re comfortable. Because anal can be so painful for some people, you really have to be extra about this. Check in with your partner, ask them what they like and set up a safeword. While you’re fucking her, ask her if it feels good or what she wants more of. Faster, slower, harder, softer? Ask away!

Lastly, I recommend getting tested before all of this. There are free testing facilities everywhere. Because anal sex can transmit disease more readily, I fully recommend you know your status and use condoms.

If you take these steps, anal can definitely be a treat both you and your partner enjoy. I absolutely love it — it’s both a special occasion for my boyfriend and something I can cum from. I like it specifically because my orgasm is significantly stronger and in a completely different place when I cum through anal penetration. In fact, I love the feeling so much that when I masturbate I often put a finger in my ass or a dildo up there to simulate a penis. That said, it’s not for everyone. If you try it and your partner doesn’t like it, that’s totally valid, too.

Oh, and if you’re looking for a basic, step-by-step visual guide, I highly recommend Jessica Drake’s guide to anal sex video — it does a great job at demonstrating how to embrace anal pleasure in a comfortable way.

I cheated on my partner but I’m not sure whether or not I should tell her. What do you think? Are there any instances in which cheating is valid or okay?
Okay, so you cheated. Whether or not you tell your partner is a very subjective choice that depends on the relationship you have with them and the reason(s) why you did it.

You and I may have very different moral compasses, and it’s not my job or anyone else’s to tell you where yours lands. However, I regularly check-in with myself about being a human and about living my truth. And if for some reason you cheated and now regret that, you will have to decide whether or not you’re going to tell your partner or die with that knowledge. Which choice you make comes down to whether you think you can handle the pressure of dishonesty and how it would affect your relationship. I can’t tell you exactly what to do without knowing more about your situation, but I will say this — if you can’t bear to keep it in and you’re not going to be putting anyone in danger by telling your partner what happened, it will probably feel and be better for everyone involved to let it out (which is especially true if you were brought up thinking cheating is categorically wrong). If that’s you, honesty is usually the best course, even if it’s painful.

By contrast, some people may be able to sleep at night without telling their partners they cheated (personally, I probably could). This is actually something that I’ve done to an ex — my needs weren’t being fulfilled in the relationship and I wasn’t getting the attention I deserved, so I looked for answers in a seedy frat house at UCLA (this isn’t an excuse, I’m just describing what happened). I felt awful afterward, but I never came clean. I wish I’d just been upfront with him from the get-go about what I needed and worked on my relationship with him instead, but that’s not what happened.

At the time, the cheating and keeping it a secret from him felt a little destructive, but it also made me realize that’s not how I wanted to live my life. I learned that I’m a happier person when I’m truthful and I believe most other people are too. For that reason, I don’t want to cheat again, and I hope my boyfriend doesn’t cheat on me, either.

However, I wouldn’t break up with him just for that reason alone. I just don’t think that cheating necessarily means the relationship is trashed — there are ways to work through the trauma if you think the relationship is worth keeping. A couple’s therapist or even listening to a podcast like Sex with Dr. Jess can really help!

That said, if your S/O does cheat on you, know that it’s probably because there’s a more substantial issue in your relationship than the cheating itself. It could be something as simple as someone who just doesn’t respect the sanctity of monogamy like you do, or maybe they don’t feel connected enough in the relationship. Whatever it is, you will only know if you confront the topic head-on.

Situations like cheating are rarely are as black and white as they’re made out to be. Relationships are complicated and cheating can complicate them further, but in the end, we’re human and we make mistakes. It’s natural to have some curiosity and temptation around sex, and there are times in which pushing your boundaries or your partner’s boundaries in that area can lead to growth and understanding. However, there are also times where it really fucks things up, which is why it’s super important to talk about things like monogamy and boundaries from the start. The more you’re on the same page with your partner about these things, the less likely you are to do something that might jeopardize your relationship. And if anything does go awry, you can circle back to those agreed-upon boundaries and deal with the bad behavior head-on by either amending the relationship or doing away with it all together.

If your relationship is strong and you care about each other, it’s possible to work through the infidelity and come out stronger in the end. But in some cases, it might also signal the relationship isn’t right for you. No matter what side of the coin you’re on, it’s important to listen to your heart and your intuition and go with what they’re telling you, even if they’re saying something other people might disagree with. There’s no real “right” answer here — it’s about what makes the most sense for your personal situation and what feels the most true to you. I won’t advocate for cheating, but I most certainly will advocate for forgiveness, especially for yourself. We are all just doing our best… most of the time.

I hope you enjoyed this week’s column! Feel free to send me your sex, love and relationship questions at tashareign1@gmail.com!