Updated: SEPTEMBER 1, 2023
Reviewed by Dr. Sunny Rodgers
on August 25, 2023

Analingus is a type of oral sex where the giving partner’s tongue stimulates a sexual partner's anus or perineum. The term is a combination of the Latin words "anus" and "lingus;" the latter comes from the word lingere meaning “to lick”. Sexologist Richard von Krafft-Ebing reportedly coined this term as an alternative to the word cunnilingus, which he also developed. The term entered the English language when Krafft-Ebing’s 1886 book "Psychopathia Sexualis" was translated from the original German in 1899.

How to Enjoy Analingus

The doggy oral sex position is the most common position for analingus. It sees both partners on all fours, with the giving partner positioned behind the receiving partner. Once in position, the giving partner spreads the receiving partner’s butt cheeks and stimulates their anal area with their mouth. They may kiss, lick or suck the anus and perineum. Using a flat tongue, as if licking an ice-cream cone, is an effective technique. Varying licks by pointing the tongue or using shorter strokes can also be pleasurable.

The giving partner can also perform analingus on a partner lying face-down on a bed, with pillows propping up their backside. The receiving partner could also stand and bend at the waist to present their anus to a kneeling partner.

Analingus can be part of foreplay or a standalone sex act. Some people find analingus a good way to become comfortable with the anus before attempting anal sex, but there is no need to transition from analingus to anal sex or any other sexual activity.

Do women enjoy analingus? What about men?

People of all genders and sexual orientations may enjoy analingus. They may enjoy receiving analingus due to the high concentration of nerve endings in the anal area. They may also enjoy giving analingus because they enjoy giving pleasure to their partner and the taboo nature of this sex act. Some stigma still surrounds enjoying anal play, especially for lesbians and others without prostate glands. However, there are still plenty of other nerve endings in the anus that can make giving and receiving analingus pleasurable for any person.

Sexual expression is very personal; what feels great for one person may not be as pleasurable for someone else. While some people enjoy analingus, others don’t, regardless of their gender and sexual orientation. Some people may be curious but apprehensive about giving or receiving analingus. Open discussions with a partner can help people decide whether analingus is something they might like to try. Staying open-minded and considering a partner’s point of view can build trust. Both partners should give consent and know they can change their minds at any time if they feel uncomfortable.

Analingus in Pornography

Analingus is commonly depicted in pornography, including animated porn and comics. Pornography with analingus may feature actors of any gender or sexuality, including scenes with couples and group sex. Animated analingus pornography often features fantasy scenarios, including analingus with anthropomorphic creatures or mythical figures like witches and minotaurs. There are also animated analingus videos featuring popular cartoon characters, such as Dora the Explorer and the Powerpuff Girls. While watching these videos may be arousing, they can also satisfy the curiosities of people interested in analingus and help them learn more about this sex act.

Synonyms for Analingus

Analingus is a relatively formal term. Variations of this term include analinction and analinctus. Common colloquial terms for this sex act include:

  • Rimming
  • Reaming
  • Ass licking
  • Anal licking
  • Tossing the salad/salad tossing
  • Giving a rim job
  • Eating ass
  • Eating booty
  • Ass munching
  • Backdoor buffet
  • Backdoor delight
  • Bootylicious feast
  • Burn chowdown
  • Clean the kitchen
  • Rusty trombone
  • Crap-tickling
  • Biting brown
  • Chewing bud
  • Butt motorboating

More About Analingus

People who’ve received analingus often say they feel warm, tingly sensations spreading through their body. They note that it’s soft, sensual, and incredibly intimate, as if their partner is making out with their ass. Experiences can vary depending on how skilled the giving partner is, with most people suggesting that practice makes for the perfect rim job. Some people who don’t particularly enjoy the sensations they feel receiving analingus say they love how aroused the giving partner gets. People who enjoy giving analingus often enjoy the physical sensation of their partner’s ass near their mouth. They may also feel turned on by the pleasure it brings their partner.

How common is analingus?

It's difficult to determine how many people are engaging in analingus, as there are few limited recent studies on the topic. A study of live-in and married couples published in the Journal of Sex Research in 2017 found that while 14% of respondents engaged in anal sex, 30% had engaged in other anal play, such as analingus. A 2020 study from Bespoke Surgical found that lesbians gave analingus more than any other group, with an average of 5.86 times per month. Gay men received analingus more than any other group at 4.26 times per month.

Practicing Analingus Safely

In many ways, giving or receiving a rim job is safer than many other sexual activities, but analingus does carry some risks. Because fecal bacteria may linger around the anus and perineum, giving partners may contract gastrointestinal illnesses. Analingus can also spread sexually transmitted infections, such as herpes and syphilis. Giving partners can reduce their risk by using dental dams, plastic wrap, or tongue condoms and getting vaccinated against hepatitis A. Maintaining good oral health is also important, as oral problems such as bleeding gums and lip sores provide entry points for infections. Receiving partners can do their part by bathing prior to analingus.

“Cleanliness is extremely important because any bacteria picked up by the giver could lead to a 'code brown situation' and nobody wants that,” confirmed Jane Oliveira, a sex therapist and sexologist. “Bacteria like e. coli and Salmonella are among the possibilities and bacteria from the anus can also cause vaginal infections. Avoid spreading bacteria with your tongue, fingers, penis, or sex toys, even at the height of it all.”

Removing the hair around the anus can also help keep this area cleaner and help people feel more confident about receiving analingus, thus enhancing the experience for the giving and receiving partners. However, hair removal methods may irritate the skin and cause ingrown hairs. When the skin becomes irritated or inflamed, there’s a higher risk of infection during analingus.


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