This week I’m going to be reviewing my first ever pair of silicone anal beads. They’re made by Sportsheets, but the company also sells a version in black under their Sex & Mischief brand.
The packaging is quite simple, with a plastic clamshell design. The cardboard insert is a little tacky, and features an image of a naked couple embracing. As a gay man it certainly did nothing to sell the product to me, and went straight into the recycling.
The product itself is 10″ long in total, and is made in two pieces. The beads are formed in one continuous chain made from silicone, and attached to the end is a hard plastic handle in the shape of the ring. There are nine beads, giving a maximum insertable length of 8 1/2″. Personally I wouldn’t insert the final bead, as half of it is made from the silicone, and half from the plastic of the handle, so it’s possible for dirt to get trapped between the join making it awkward to clean. This leaves 7 1/2″ of the silicone portion which can be inserted safely.
The silicone portion has a velvety finish as opposed to a shiny one, and is very bendy and flexible. It does have a noticeable mould line running down the side, but I wasn’t too put off by this, considering the very reasonable price. The advantage of the flexibility is that it’s extremely easy to insert the whole length of the toy; it snakes around inside you the deeper you get, without causing any feelings of resistance. Obviously being so bendy means it’s not a thrusting toy, but that isn’t really the point of anal beads. I found that compared to other silicone toys, this one doesn’t attract dust quite so badly, but it does have a slight odour if you hold it close to your nose.
The beads are quite small – only 1″ thick at the widest point – and tapered at the end; I liken it to a chain of hazelnuts. The small size makes them suited to someone who is just starting out with anal play, as they’re very easy to insert. I wouldn’t be inclined to recommend them to somebody more experienced, as personally I found them a little boring. The small size and the close spacing limits the sensation you feel when removing them, and there’s no satisfying sense of a “pop” as you pull each one out.
When the beads are inside the body they do rest quite comfortably. The silicone material has enough give in it, that even if you clamp down tightly with your muscles, you won’t feel sore. I didn’t find the beads suitable for wearing long term, as if I began to relax they slowly started slipping out one by one. They’re definitely more suited to being actively played with, rather than inserting and forgetting about for a while.
The ring-shaped handle is a useful feature, both because it acts as the widest point and prevents the beads from being inserted too far, and because slipping a finger through it gives you very good grip on the toy to remove it, no matter how slippery and lube-covered your hands might be. Personally I would have preferred it to be made from silicone like the rest of the product, in order to eliminate the aforementioned issue with the final bead.
As always you’ll want to use lubricant with an anal toy, and make sure it’s a water-based lube when you have a silicone toy. I found I only needed a couple of dabs on the first few beads, and the thing slipped in like a charm, rather than needing to cover the whole length of the toy.
The toy is very easy to clean; you can wash it with anti-bacterial soap and hot water, apply toy cleaner, and as it’s silicone you also have the options of boiling it, or using a 10% bleach solution.
Overall I’m quite pleased with the product. It was fun to try something little different, and even though it wasn’t quite right for me, I can see it being very suitable for a lot of people. Being a silicone toy, the price point means it represents excellent value for money.
The silicone anal beads are available in black from SexToys.co.uk