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The Male Condom

A male condom is a narrow tube, made from very thin, natural latex rubber which is soft and stretchy. It fits over a man’s erect penis and must be put on before the penis enters the vagina. Condoms prevent the man’s sperm meeting the woman’s egg. Male Condoms are more accurate than female condoms as they are 99% effective. Couples can use male condoms to prevent S.T.I’s as well as pregnancy. Click the following link for  a demonstration on how to put on a condom: ThinkContraception.

Benefits of male condoms

  • Male condoms are easily accessible in most shops and pharmacy’s.
  • Male condoms are easily accessible for both male and females, so both sexes can take responsibility to carry them.
  • Condoms can be easily used along with other methods of contraception as they provide protection from S.T.I’s when a lot of other forms of contraception do not.
  • The male condom does not have any known side effects.
  • Its contraceptive effects are totally reversible.
  • You only need to use them when having sex.
  • Male condoms come in a variety of types, shapes and sizes.

Disadvantages of the male condom

  • Condoms can get easily damaged causing them to split and become ineffective.
  • If an oil based lubricant is used the condom can become ineffective.
  • Applying the condom correctly to the penis takes some practice.
  • Condoms come with an expiry date and must be used before they expire as they can become ineffective.
  • They are expensive.
  • Some people are sensitive to the chemicals in latex condoms, though this is rare.
  • Male condoms are not generally suitable for men who do not always keep their erection during intercourse (HSE, 2017) (IFPA, 2017).

For more information on male condoms or any other contraceptive method, click on any of the link below;

Factsheet on Male & Female Condoms-IFPA

Think Contraception


Female Condom

A female condom is a tube made of very thin polyurethane plastic or rubber. The only female condom currently available is ‘Femidom’. It is closed at one end, and designed to form a loose lining to a woman’s vagina with two flexible rings, one at each end. They are found to be 98% effective IF they are used carefully.
The female condom is a barrier that prevents against S.T.Is as well as pregnancy.

Benefits of the Female Condom

  • The condom can be inserted before sexual intercourse.
  • The female condom can be used with both water and oil lubricants.
  • The female condom does not need a prescription.
  • No medical side effects as there is no hormones.
  • Protects against STI’s.

Disadvantages of choosing the Female condom

  • Female condom may be noisy.
  • The female condom can slip in or out of the vagina during sexual intercourse.
  • It can be pushed to the side during sex.
  • Correctly inserting the female requires practice (HSE, 2016) (IFPA, 2017).

For more information on female condoms or any other contraceptive method, click on any of the link below;

Factsheet on Male & Female Condoms-IFPA

Think Contraception