Bum's The Word: Exploring Our Obsession With Arse
Sex|Jun 3, 2021

Bum's The Word: Exploring Our Obsession With Arse

No Ifs, Just Butts - We're In The Age Of The Arse, Writes Amie Wee.
Amie Wee

Sex acts and fetishising body parts go in and out of vogue in pop culture. In the 90s, we were all about blowjobs and big boobs but these days, we’re all about the booty. Bums aren’t just having a moment though – our obsession with the arse runs deep and has reached fever pitch. Welcome to 2021, where having a shapely derriere is in fashion, anal sex is mainstream and rimming is the new second base. We’re in the age of the arse and there’s no escaping it. Not that we’d want to.

Whether it’s the “forbidden fruit” taboo aspect of sticking our tongue in someone’s backdoor, the potential for both pain and pleasure that can come with a touch of backdoor sex, or the simple fact that we like to admire butts, so it’s expected that we would want to touch them – arses have a universal desirability among both men and women.

A survey conducted by The Journal of Sexual Medicine in 2010 found that 40 percent of women aged 20 to 24 had tried anal sex, up from 16 percent in previous years. More recently, a 2017 study of more than 3000 sexually active millennials found that 36 percent engaged in female anal sex and 15 percent in male anal sex “at least some of the time.” One 2018 study published in the Journal of American Sexually Transmitted Diseases Association in the US even proved that “anal sex is more common than having a Twitter account in the United States”.

PornHub data also shows that the number of searches for “anal” increased by a massive 120 percent from 2009 to 2015, suggesting that our obsession with watching anal action is continually growing. Especially in Russia. Apparently internet porn users in Russia are more likely to search for videos featuring anal sex than people from any other country.

Prolific pornstar Asa Akira even once tweeted, “Ass is the new pussy.” 

We're in the age of the arse and there's no escaping it

But it’s not just porn (and the Russians) that are focused on the female derriere though – arses have also heavily infiltrated pop culture. Throughout the late ‘90s and early 2000s, we all gawked at Jennifer Lopez’s arse like it was a mystical creature, yet a decade later, celebrities and influencers are tripping over themselves in attempt to get the biggest, roundest bum.

We see anal sex and rimjob references in TV shows and movies like Narcos, Sex And The City, Broad City, Bad Santa, Girls and How to Get Away with Murder. Butts have also had a long history of being idolised in song, from Queen’s 1976 arse anthem ‘Fat Bottomed Girls’ to the 1992’s ‘Baby Got Back’ and Nikki Minaj famously singing,  “Somebody point me to the best arse-eater” in the song ‘Dance (A$$)’ by Big Sean, and in ‘Anaconda’ she sings “toss my salad like his name Romaine”. Hell, popular musician Flume was even filmed eating arse on stage at Burning Man.

In the last few years there’s also been a shift in sex toy companies focusing on more creative and ergonomic toys for anal play. Anal toys come in various forms now and often includes vibrators and various attachments, with some having the ability to be controlled remotely via apps. You can buy lubes specifically designed for anal use. And pegging and strap ons for straight couples have been on the rise. 

Forrest Andrews, a product developer at Aneros, the world’s first dedicated prostate massage maker, said “The market for prostate products has been steadily on the rise.” 

A decade ago, sex toy shop Babeland only carried a few prostate-focussed toys, but today they stock almost 30 different models by a bunch of different companies.

The bottom line is – we’re in an anal revolution – no ifs or ands… just butts.  


Photo: Celine Andrea.