Exploding the Dogma of the "Flared Base" for anal toys

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Exploding the Dogma of the "Flared Base" for anal toys

P'Gell P'Gell
Of course, anal toys need to be safe. It is possible for some, smaller toys to actually be retracted into the anus and be difficult or impossible to remove. This sometimes necessitates an emergency room visit or a lot of work on one's part.

However, sometimes I see fairly large, otherwise safe toys being reviewed with the warning "do not use anally as this toy does not have a flared base." Is this always the case? Or is it simply dogma that we follow, because we hear it so frequently?

According to Tristan Taomina, in her book The Ultimate Guide to Anal Sex for Women Taormino disagrees.



She talks about anal toys in detail. Taormino has done a great deal of research into safe and enjoyable anal play. I think the woman knows what she is talking about. I'm paraphrasing here, but she says as long as the toy is at least eight inches long and you can get a fist around the base, most long toys (if the proper material for cleansing after use) are safe for anal play.

Have you read Taormino's book? Or are you part of her website? What do you think about her work in researching safe anal play and her conclusion that not every toy, especially large toys absolutely require a "flared base" to be safe?

We are not talking about plugs, bullets, or putting food or small or breakable items etc into the anus. We are talking about long, safe toys, which would be impossible to actually be "sucked into" the anus being considered safe without a "flared base."

Do we need to be more open to Taormino's advice?
08/12/2011
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Kindred Kindred
I think it's fine to use toys without a base anally, particularly if they are relatively long. However, I think it's generally safer in a review to not recommend that practice since some readers may truly not be knowledgeable as to what is safe to use anally, and I don't really want to debate that issue in my review every time. Most people who are knowledgeable can safely make the decision to use or not use a particular toy on their own.
08/12/2011
P'Gell P'Gell
Quote:
Originally posted by Kindred
I think it's fine to use toys without a base anally, particularly if they are relatively long. However, I think it's generally safer in a review to not recommend that practice since some readers may truly not be knowledgeable as to what is ...
So, Kindred, in a review for a toy without a flared base which you personally do use anally, do you mention it (with a tip of the hat to Tristan or her words) or do you go with the standard "Do not use anally?"

I tend to mention Tristan's opinion on anal toys, but also leave a warning for person use of the toy. As long as the material is anal safe and well cleanable.
08/12/2011
Kindred Kindred
Quote:
Originally posted by P'Gell
So, Kindred, in a review for a toy without a flared base which you personally do use anally, do you mention it (with a tip of the hat to Tristan or her words) or do you go with the standard "Do not use anally?"

I tend to mention ...
I actually had to look back at my reviews because I didn't know off hand. I only have one product that could potentially be used anally that did not have a flared base that I reviewed. Interestingly, it was a vibrator that the manufacturer's instructions stated could be used anally. In my review, I simply stated that "I would be cautious since this vibrator does not have a pronounced flare at the base and at a maximum diameter of 1-5/8 inches, can accidentally be inserted completely." The vibrator is a total of 8" and so probably safe based purely on length. But again, I think it's safer to side on caution when we are dealing with potential anal toy novices. I'd rather not have someone have an unforeseen problem and then blame me.

On a slight tangent (sorry if this is too off topic), a flared base doesn't mean it is completely safe either. I used a very popular silicone plug on my wife while at the same time playing with a dildo vaginally. Let's just say, I must have gotten a little too enthusiastic because I soon realized the plug was missing, and not because she shot it out. Either that or she has a silicone eating ass. Fortunately, it was easy to retrieve because the base was very pliable.
08/12/2011
catgirl9 catgirl9
I'm glad you brought this up, P'Gell, as it's something that I've often wondered about. I've read reviews for seemingly anal safe toys and the 'not for anal use because it doesn't have a flared base' disclaimer struck me as somewhat odd. I can understand the reasoning behind it, but I always wondered why something HAD to have a flared base, know what I mean? I agree though that if it's big enough, then really the user should be just fine, especially if there's another partner present.

I've used toys anally that don't have a flared base. I'm not running around sticking small and short toys in there, but I think as long as the toy is long enough, it's not going to get sucked in and lost. If I ever have doubts, then I wouldn't do it. I have to be pretty certain that it's safe first.

While I haven't read her book yet, it is on my list of stuff that I want to read.
08/12/2011
P'Gell P'Gell
Quote:
Originally posted by Kindred
I actually had to look back at my reviews because I didn't know off hand. I only have one product that could potentially be used anally that did not have a flared base that I reviewed. Interestingly, it was a vibrator that the ...
I had the same problem with my once beloved Orion Plug of Lust Small. My Man was playing with me, and suddenly the plug felt.. weird. I reached back there (he didn't know what had happened) and I realized the entire flared base had gone inside. Luckily I could grab the little handle, and I had put a jewelry chain on it, in case of emergency. So, it was extracted quickly. But, we haven't used it since. I got bigger plugs. I did love that plug when I was a novice, though.
08/12/2011
P'Gell P'Gell
Quote:
Originally posted by catgirl9
I'm glad you brought this up, P'Gell, as it's something that I've often wondered about. I've read reviews for seemingly anal safe toys and the 'not for anal use because it doesn't have a flared base' disclaimer struck ...
The book is excellent!

I was thinking about this, because sometimes we fall into cliches and often they are disproved. I also agree with Kindred that I wouldn't want to be responsible for someone who wasn't careful and got a toy stuck, though.

One of the toys we use pretty frequently as an anal probe is the Marble G Vibrator. They make the same exact vibrator, for men, in a grey smoked color, for anal use.



Here's Dr. Kaplin's Prostate Massager



Basically, the same toy. But, the one "made" for anal use is actually 1/2 in shorter.





It's 8 inches long, easy to hold on to, and there is plenty of room to get a grip on it, Also it's bent, being a "G Spot" vibrator. I doubt the entire thing could be "sucked in." We just use the end of it, and have always had good luck with it.
08/12/2011
Coralbell Coralbell
I went into this issue a bit in my follow-up review for the Rhapsodia link after being asked about it. That toy doesn't have a traditional base, but has a retrieval cord that does flare at the end. I can only insert anal toys about 6 inches deep. After that, I hit a "wall" and it hurts a lot to try and go any farther. Because of that, I feel totally safe (even for long term wear) with a toy that is over 8 inches long, especially when it does have a bit of a flare at the end. There's no way I wouldn't notice that slipping too far inside.

If I used a toy with no base anally, in my review I would explain how I used it, warn that there is some potential for danger, and explain what users can do to prevent an accident, like always keeping a firm grip on the toy.
08/12/2011
Redboxbaby Redboxbaby
Quote:
Originally posted by P'Gell
The book is excellent!

I was thinking about this, because sometimes we fall into cliches and often they are disproved. I also agree with Kindred that I wouldn't want to be responsible for someone who wasn't careful and got a toy ...
The Marble G is one of my favorites.
08/12/2011
Robin Goodfellow Robin Goodfellow
I think the the flared base is like a seatbelt; a great easy safety to benefit all passengers traveling the anal road. However, more advanced road users may enjoy driving the more technical vehicles such as motorcycles and such and thus totally negating the use of this safety feature at all. If you have the skills, know your limits, know your body and the equipment your using I believe there is absolutely no reason to use a flared base for safety. At this point the base is just a facet of the overall design, i.e. base of an anal plug.

In my personal experience I fall more into the advanced category. I use non flared toys all the time, including full insertion of double dildos, apples, silicone juggling balls, polished stones, etc. I do this because it is pleasurable to me, and relatively safe. I've never had any cause for alarm. However, I would never recommend the things I do to people. Like anything, like riding a motorcycle there are countless potential hazards. The people whom this style of play is safe for will know it intuitively. They will have put in the time, know their bodies excellently, and will surpass fear and uncertainty with volumes of experience and baby steps.
08/12/2011
Ivy Wilde Ivy Wilde
I've wondered about this too. I'm glad to hear what everyone else has to say about longer anal toys that don't have a flared base.

One thing that has sort of bothered me is seeing anal plugs where the "base" of the plug is actually smaller in diameter than the largest part of the plug. If you can get the much larger "plug" part past your sphincter, won't the "base" go in as well?
08/12/2011
Selective Sensualist Selective Sensualist
Quote:
Originally posted by Robin Goodfellow
I think the the flared base is like a seatbelt; a great easy safety to benefit all passengers traveling the anal road. However, more advanced road users may enjoy driving the more technical vehicles such as motorcycles and such and thus totally ...
Thanks for sharing your experience. My husband has told me that he has seen people insert apples while watching videos online, and I am extremely curious about this practice. First of all, I am amazed by the confidence level of anyone willing to try this (but that is because I am still a complete novice to anal play and am intimidated by medium-sized plugs still!). I always wonder, first of all, how one goes about inserting an apple (since the shape is completely round and not tapered to ease insertion and the size is also quite large). I also wonder how difficult it would be to get something perfectly round back out? Is this fairly easy to do once you become a lot more experienced with toys of different sizes, or have you ever had a frightening experience getting it back out? The reason I ask is because my husband had tried the Pipedream Icicles #17 anally, and even with the shaft to use as an extraction device (and even with a smaller diameter head than an apple), he had a horrible time getting that round shape back out. Was he doing something wrong? He has been completely turned off to prostate/anal play since then, and I'm just wondering what could have made the experience so unpleasant (he had previous experience with plenty of anal toys, so I had concluded that the problem was the round shape, but maybe I am wrong).

My apologies if I sound nosy or rude in any way. The question is sincere, and I am genuinely wanting to learn more about this!
08/12/2011
Selective Sensualist Selective Sensualist
Quote:
Originally posted by P'Gell
Of course, anal toys need to be safe. It is possible for some, smaller toys to actually be retracted into the anus and be difficult or impossible to remove. This sometimes necessitates an emergency room visit or a lot of work on one's part. ...
I haven't formed an opinion yet on the safety of longer anal toys without a flared base, so I'm just here to eavesdrop on the conversation to learn as much as I can.
08/12/2011
Wondermom Wondermom
personally we use toys without a flared base anally, but in a review I do think its smart to say it doesn't have a flared base and that you don't recommend its use for anal or at least note the need for precaution. I wouldn't want anyone to blame me because they had to go to the ER. I like to write my review towards a total novice so I expect more advanced users would know what works for them and what they can handle.
08/12/2011
Axis Axis
I agree that it is really about knowing your own body. I've used anal toys that don't have a traditional flared base, usually vibrators like the lelo liv, and I like to think that I know my way around my own body. However, there is always the chance of getting carried away. I don't know about others, but I know that sometimes when something feels good and i'm worked up and I want to go for it, caution can be thrown to the wind. Having a nice flare, or some sort of texturing like bulbs ect, is as good for peace of mind as anything. If something is there to act as a barrier to misuse, it allows me to not worry about it, and to just let go and enjoy myself.

I suppose that really it is down to the same idea as "Don't use silicone lube with silicone toys!" as really good quality silicone lube shouldn't react to really good silicone toys, but because there are so many blends of both material and lube, it's easier to put a blanket ban than to test every eventuality, especially when the potential for ruin is always an option. I certainly think that any anal toy aimed at beginners should have a significant flare. I've seen beginner anal vibes and dildos where the widest part of the toy is intended to be inserted and tapers off to a point at the handle! Not safe at all.
08/12/2011
AngelvMaynard AngelvMaynard
Quote:
Originally posted by Selective Sensualist
I haven't formed an opinion yet on the safety of longer anal toys without a flared base, so I'm just here to eavesdrop on the conversation to learn as much as I can.
Me too. I think this is a very interesting thread.
08/12/2011
Antipova Antipova
Interesting thread, P'Gell. I haven't read Tristan's book, but what you paraphrase above matches what my natural inclination has always been.

I got a comment on a review on a 15" string of anal beads asking "that's so skinny, are you sure it won't get lost?" And I can say, with certainty, it will *never* be lost. I had to work for every inch past the sigmoid colon, and 6 extra inches would not be able to be sucked in no matter how strong the orgasm.

In my reviews of items for anal use without the orthodox flared base, I'll tend to say "if you attempt anal use, have a partner hold the handle," or "those without anal experience should learn their limits before attempting [...]." I feel that phrasing like this lets readers who might not be aware of the risks know that they should do some research, without being needlessly preachy or restrictive.
08/12/2011
Antipova Antipova
Quote:
Originally posted by Ivy Wilde
I've wondered about this too. I'm glad to hear what everyone else has to say about longer anal toys that don't have a flared base.

One thing that has sort of bothered me is seeing anal plugs where the "base" of the plug ...
In my experience, this can be fine as long as the angle of approach to the base is sharp. Think of how much easier it is to insert a spade-shape than a sphere, because the angle of approach is gentler. SSA's Pink Ripple is an example of the kind of plug you're talkign about


See how long you take sliding in to insert the top part? And then see how short a time you have to widen from the neck to the base? For my body, the angle of approach can make something like that not a danger.

(This is just an example, I don't actually have this plug.)

Also---it's never happened, but if I ever did lose something inside, I'd follow ScottA's advice on bottomtalk for removing it, rather than going to an ER right away.
08/12/2011
El-Jaro El-Jaro
Quote:
Originally posted by Robin Goodfellow
I think the the flared base is like a seatbelt; a great easy safety to benefit all passengers traveling the anal road. However, more advanced road users may enjoy driving the more technical vehicles such as motorcycles and such and thus totally ...
Good analogy!

I've had the "oops! Where'd it go!?!" situation with the cobalt blue plug and haven't used it since.
08/13/2011
ToyTimeTim ToyTimeTim
I feel that in a review we as good "Product testers" should always follow safe guidelines for anal toy use. I would not like to hear someone say they lost a toy due to me saying it was safe for anal use. Furthermore, even some of the safe anal toys can be lost, my Severin has tried to disappear on more than one occasion and it has a "Good" base.

In my review of the Lattachino Swirl Probe I talked about an experience I had with it. "Something else I would like to mention is that this probe, for some odd reason, found its way past the Rectosigmoid junction. I have never had a toy get past this spot, and it kind of caught me off guard. The feeling was not bad by any means but was strange. Thankfully the ball on the end was there to stop it from going in all the way. That is the main reason everyone says to only use a toy anally that has a good base. Take it from your buddy Dwtim, things can happen when you least expect it, so be careful! PLEASE." This on a toy that has a six inch insertable length. I am sure that if the ball end was not there it would have gone in all the way. I know it is easy for soft materials or toys that have a curve to get inserted farther but this is a strait glass dildo.

But I feel it should be said that even the long toys are not always safe, take my mighty Eleven for example. The other day while using it it too slipped past and slid all the way to the large end, that is nine inches. Just goes to show that once your body learns to relax anything can happen.

So ya, I think we should put out the disclaimer, better safe than sorry. I think it is fine to talk about using a non anal toy, just make sure to mention that we use a good firm grip and we are very experienced with anal toy use. That way we warn the newbies and let the more experienced crowd know how it feels.

Safety first.
08/13/2011
P'Gell P'Gell
Quote:
Originally posted by Redboxbaby
The Marble G is one of my favorites.
Are you talking for anal play or vaginal? For me, it's too loud to turn on often. (I'm paranoid about noise and afraid we'll get the attention of the kids while we're having sex.) Anally, I really like it. I don't care for it a lot vaginally, unless I'm driving, because My Man tends to want to thrust toys (probably because with softer toys like silicone vibrators and dils, I really like that) and this toy is actually painful when thrusted. I always have to say, "That's the hard one, please don't ram it in."

We do have a good time with this one anally. The bulb is perfect and easier for My Man to use on me than a plug.
08/13/2011
P'Gell P'Gell
Quote:
Originally posted by ToyTimeTim
I feel that in a review we as good "Product testers" should always follow safe guidelines for anal toy use. I would not like to hear someone say they lost a toy due to me saying it was safe for anal use. Furthermore, even some of the safe ...
Thanks, that's a good balanced way of explaining this.
08/13/2011
P'Gell P'Gell
Quote:
Originally posted by Robin Goodfellow
I think the the flared base is like a seatbelt; a great easy safety to benefit all passengers traveling the anal road. However, more advanced road users may enjoy driving the more technical vehicles such as motorcycles and such and thus totally ...
An excellent analogy. Thank you for your input.

I agree (and this is similar to what DWTim said) that perhaps mentioning larger, longer toys have been used by the reviewer anally, but that safety has to be observed and one not only needs to know one's abilities and limits, but be prepared for the unexpected.
08/13/2011
P'Gell P'Gell
Quote:
Originally posted by P'Gell
Are you talking for anal play or vaginal? For me, it's too loud to turn on often. (I'm paranoid about noise and afraid we'll get the attention of the kids while we're having sex.) Anally, I really like it. I don't care for it a ...
QUOTE from me: I don't care for it a lot vaginally, unless I'm driving

OMG, when I said "unless I'm driving" I meant handling the toy. When My Man handles the toy I say "He's driving." When I handle the toy I say I am "driving." IN BED.

I do NOT use sex toys while I am operating a motor vehicle, ever! Nor do I condone or recommend doing this.

I appreciate everyone's input to this thread. I've been thinking about this a lot lately and you all have great things to say, even those who are just here to read.

Anything to help us all be better reviewers and have an other good reason to talk about sex.
08/13/2011
Kindred Kindred
Quote:
Originally posted by P'Gell
The book is excellent!

I was thinking about this, because sometimes we fall into cliches and often they are disproved. I also agree with Kindred that I wouldn't want to be responsible for someone who wasn't careful and got a toy ...
Probe style toys are generally the exception to having a flared base because they are typically longer and because of how they are typically used. In general, most probes are used to apply pressure or shorter stroking motions rather than deep trusting as with a dildo. Thus, the style of use reduces the chance of slipping in completely. There is still always a risk, just much less so.
08/13/2011
ToyTimeTim ToyTimeTim
Quote:
Originally posted by P'Gell
QUOTE from me: I don't care for it a lot vaginally, unless I'm driving

OMG, when I said "unless I'm driving" I meant handling the toy. When My Man handles the toy I say "He's driving." When I handle the toy ...
Oh ya right, like we believe you.


08/13/2011
ScottA ScottA
In the interests of experimentation I've shoved a number of toys entirely up my ass, and tried unsuccessfully to put some other ones up there. From that not-entirely-scientifi c research I've come to several conclusions:

For most toys as long as you're holding onto them there isn't going to be a problem. The butt doesn't "suck" anything up, things just can get shoved past the sphincter. As long as you've got a reasonable grip on the toy it will almost always stay in your hands. I say almost just because there's always a chance that someone will have a very lubed toy and they're thrusting fast enough that the inertia pulls the toy out of their hand, but that's about as likely as it sounds.

For stiff toys six inches is about the limit of what will fit in your rectum before the bends start to stop it. As an example take the Sapphire Falls link . It's 6-1/2" long, and I can just barely get it all the way inside, but my anus will not close completely around the end. A cough will bring it back out. For these I'm more concerned about a longer toy getting pushed hard enough to bruse/pierce the intestine than I am with them getting "lost". In any case they won't ever leave the rectum so they'll come out pretty quickly on their own - just make sure you don't do anything that will break them (not likely).

For long, bendy toys you get more friction and it gets harder to insert as you go higher. For something such as Cisco link , you'd need to press really hard for it to get lost. I was never able to fully insert it, but by my limit it was taking a pretty good shove to get any further in.

What I'd be more concerned with is the shape of the "back end" of the toy. A soft silicone toy should always be safe, but if they have corners or sharp angles they could be quite uncomfortable going in and out - for example the Ryder plug has a soft enough base that I can force it all the way in, but it's quite uncomfortable so there's no way that would happen without me figuring out what was going on. On the bad side it's equally uncomfortable coming out. A toy with a rounded end, such as the aforementioned Sapphire Falls or the Epona G-spot vibrator will slip out easily enough, but a stiff toy with a back end that's not rounded (or an improvised toy with a non-safe back end) can cause damage and should probably be removed professionally to minimize the damage.

For most things, the best advice for a lost toy is the one from the "Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy": Don't panic. The bad news is that this can be hard for someone without a lot of experience who just realized that their toy has gone AWOL.

More of the same here on Bottomtalk: link
08/16/2011
Robin Goodfellow Robin Goodfellow
Quote:
Originally posted by Selective Sensualist
Thanks for sharing your experience. My husband has told me that he has seen people insert apples while watching videos online, and I am extremely curious about this practice. First of all, I am amazed by the confidence level of anyone willing to ...
The Apple conundrum.
As I said earlier I've never had any cause for concern. Just calculatedly pushing the boundaries. In your husbands case, with the Icicle, my guess is he just wasn't warmed up/ relaxed enough. In my experience with anal pursuits, as a rule of thumb, when violating the boundary of your ass you typically get more up tight. Literal correlation between being nervous and uptight and having that manifest physiologically in your anus muscles. So if you put something up your ass without proper warmup, you may find that its tighter on the pull out. The real joy of anal comes with overcoming this natural tendency, thats where the discomfort morphs into pleasure. Even after much experience sometimes its hard to make the transition, but I know if I go slow, it will happen.

Now to the apples. As you mentioned, roundness vs taper. The roundness is the the taper, you just have to extrapolate the roundness to the tapered curve of say a really big dildo. I will be posting a review of Happy Valleys Hottie Xtra. It's head is a comparable size to a small apple. In order to take say a large girthed toy or an apple it takes time. Thats the bottom line. To stretch out to those sizes safely, there is not a short cut. It doesn't take years, just gradual increases in a matter of months could have you up there in the advanced realm. As I said I won't recommend full insertions to people, However I'm happy to share my experience for others benefit. Once I thought I was ready for the apple, I got a small one and carved a hole through it, put a piece of nylon cord through it and tied a large knot on one side and had the eject string handle on the other. It made the insertion with the knot less than glamorous and not ideally comfortable but I thought the safety measure worth it. It was helpful to give it little tugs when learning to push out such a large object, but I only used it that one time and afterwards was confident I could do it without training wheels. Its never been a problem. Good luck.
08/19/2011
Beaners Beaners
Yay! I'm so glad someone is talking about this!

It really just seems to come down to common sense. My boyfriend and I have some not flared glass toys that we use anally. The Cyberglass four-way G being one of them. It's not a ridiculously long toy, but I can keep a good grip on one end and don't have to worry about it disappearing anywhere. On the other hand, we do have a "butt plug" (and when I say that I mean that it's really more of a probe or dildo, but it's marketed as a butt plug, I'll be writing that in my review) that makes me nervous due to it's base. It's a squishy material and it just isn't firm enough to make me believe that with one thrust too hard it couldn't go *poof*.

With that said, I do agree that it's a good overall rule to have. How many times have you said, exasperated, "It's common sense!" Yes, it probably is. But common sense isn't always so common, and its better to be safe than sorry, particularly when going recommendations to the masses.
08/29/2011
Total posts: 29
Unique posters: 16