Condoms are the cheapest and most readily available option for birth control. If you’re looking to safely get your rocks off with a new partner, condoms are the best way to go. Many people complain that condoms subtract from the experience, but if you’re using them correctly, they can be a separate experience all on their own.
Condoms come in a wide variety of shapes, sizes, styles, and even colors and flavors. While deciding which box to buy may feel a little nerve wracking, just know that no one is judging you for buying condoms. Honestly, no one notices or even cares. Besides, picking out which type to purchase with your partner can be a form of foreplay all on it’s own.
Why Use a Condom
If you have attended any sexual education class you have heard that condoms prevent pregnancy and STDs. But they can also prevent infections (such as UTIs), aid in lubrication, add flavor to oral sex, and even add a little something extra to your sexual encounters (think ribbed, for her).
When used correctly condoms provide 98% protection against unwanted pregnancy. Furthermore, condoms are the only birth control that provide protection against STDs. They’re known to best protect against STDs that are transmitted through bodily fluids, such as chlamydia, gonorrhea, syphilis, and trichomoniasis. Condoms have even been proven to reduce the risk of transmitting HIV and HPV. Unfortunately, condoms do not protect against herpes or HPV if warts or sores are present and not covered by the condom. As these types of STDs are transmittable via skin to skin contact.
Why Condoms Fail
Condoms fail for many reasons, the most common being not storing them properly. I go into more detail on this below, but you should never store condoms in your bathroom, car, or wallet. They should be kept in a cool, dry place out of direct sunlight to avoid them breaking down. Many people use their teeth to open condom packages and accidentally tear the condom – even microtears can reduce the effectivity of a condom. Another common reason condoms fail is that people do not check the expiration date on their condoms or they don’t know how to use them properly at all!
How To Use a Condom
Condom usage errors are very common as many people are not taught how to properly use one by their sex ed teachers or parents. Thankfully, with the internet, you can look it up, but who’s going to think about that in the heat of the moment?
The most common mistakes made when using a condom include, putting it on upside down, putting the condom on directly before cumming, opening the package with a sharp object, using the wrong lube, or storing the condom wrong. If you’re planning on using lubricant with your condoms, ensure that the package says “condom safe” and that the lubricant is silicone or water based. Oil based lubes cause condoms to deteriorate and not be as effective.
Condoms should be stored in a cool, dry place, out of direct sunlight – not in your wallet. Never in your wallet. If you’re going to carry a condom around it is best to put it in a bag away from your body, but if you must carry it on your person, it is best to carry it in your pocket rather than in your wallet, and only for short periods of time. Body heat is enough to cause the condom to begin to deteriorate, and reduce its effectiveness.
Before using a condom you should check its expiration date and ensure that it is not expired. You should not use your teeth or a sharp object to open the condom as this could risk damaging the condom. Once you have the package open, ensure that the condom is facing the right way. The rim should be on the outside and the condom should resemble a little hat. If you put the condom on upside down, do not flip it around and reuse it – just get a new one.
Once you have figured out which way to place the condom, put a little bit of condom safe lube in it, pinch the tip to get rid of any air, and roll the condom down onto an erect penis while continuing to pinch the tip. You should only put on a condom while you’re fully erect and should not use a condom if you have gone soft it. This reduces the risk of air getting into the condom and the condom breaking. If you are uncircumsized, you may find it more comfortable to pull back the foreskin before putting on the condom.
You may use condom safe lube on the outside of the condom if you’re going to be having anal sex or just to enhance the experience for your partner. After you have sex and ejaculate into the condom, you should hold onto the base of the condom as you pull out and before you lose your erection. Once you’re out of and away from your partners genitals, you should remove the condom tie it off, and throw it away. Don’t flush condoms as this can cause your pipes to clog.
Never try to reuse a condom and don’t use the same condom to swap between sexual activities or partners. If you are going from oral sex to vaginal sex or anal sex to oral sex (or any sexual activity to any other sexual activity) you should change the condom. If you are having a threesome (or more) you should change condoms between partners.
Using condoms doesn’t have to subtract from your experience. You can take your time picking out the right condom with your partner and have fun doing it. Just be sure that you know how to store and use them properly in order to obtain the maximum protection and benefits that they offer. Condoms are a great, cheap way to prevent pregnancy and the only way, currently, to prevent the spread of STDs.