In this post we’re going to talk about external condoms, the most common form of condoms. External condoms can be used in many different ways to keep sex safe and cut down on your worry of both pregnancy and STI’s!
The number one way that external condoms are used is by rolling the condom down the object/body part that will be used to penetrate during sex,often a penis or sex toy. One important thing that needs to be learned before using a condom for safe sex is how to properly put on a condom!
Now all of these steps are very important to follow so that the risk of the condom breaking is as low as possible. A few things not mentioned in the drawing is the fact that it is a good idea to put two or three drops of water based lubrication on the inside of the condom and plenty of water based lube on the outside of the condom as well! (Make sure you read my article on Lube Types before buying your lube!)
Now, aside from the most common use of external condoms, condoms can ALSO be made into dental dams. To make them into dental dams is simple, you take a pair of scissors and snip off the top of the condom. Then carefully cut down the side of the condom so you have a large flat sheet of material. Place a few drops of lube on the anus or vagina, cover the area with the dental dam, and have fun! Make sure you hold the damn steady so it doesn’t shift or move from the area you’re protecting, and be mindful of your teeth so no holes are poked in the material.
Condoms are durable (go watch a youtube video on how they’re made to see how durable!) but you still have to be cautious about where you store them. The old trope of “Keeping a rubber in my wallet” is actually a really bad idea. The constant folding or friction from you opening and closing the wallet causes it to deteriorate, not to mention your body heat. Condoms should ideally be stored A) In a protective case, B) at room temperature (anything outside of the 32f-100f degree range is very bad for the condom.) and C) out of direct sunlight.
One way to protect your condoms is to keep them only in your bedside table, but it is a good idea to have one on you at all times, just in case. The best way to do this, I’ve found, is to go to any store with a travel section and grab a few packs of Q-Tip travel cases.
They are the perfect size and shape to store one or two condoms, the snap shut protectively, and you can slip it into your backpack, purse, glove compartment, or your pocket (as long as its not in there all day.)
There are three main materials that condoms are made out of
- Latex: The most common form. Incredibly strong and flexible, but will breakdown when it comes into contact with extreme heat, cold, UV light, and/or ANY oils.
- Synthetic: Usually polyurethane, some brands claim to be thinner than natural latex (however the average is, like latex, .007-.004mm thickness.) SOME synthetic condoms can be used with oil-based lubricants. Always check out the packages!
- Lambskin: Made of sheep intestines, this kind is NOT effective against STIs, ONLY pregnancy. Some claim that these have a more ‘natural’ feeling to them.
Other than this, there are many different varieties of condoms, including flavored, colored, scented, textured, and even glow in the dark! However, sometimes these are not approved by the FDA and therefore may not be safe to use for the prevention of STI’s or pregnancy. Make sure you check the back of any package, it will clearly state if it is for ‘Novelty Use’ or prevention.
Condoms are very effective at preventing pregnancy. If they’re used PERFECTLY every single time, the failure rate is less than 2%, and even with their typical use (this includes people not putting their condoms on right) they have a less than 10% failure rate.
As for STI’s, Condoms are very effective (there are no exact statistics, but all major health organizations agree, your best bet is abstinence, followed by condoms.)
insta reblog non gendering posts using the term external condom! I’m glad this term is becoming more popular.
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