- 5 Condom Mistakes You Don’t Want to Make
- What if the condom is too big?
- 5 Common Misconceptions About Condoms, Because You Can’t Be “Too Big”
- How to avoid 6 common condom problems
- Problems with the fit (size) of condoms are really common.
- How A Condom Should Fit: Common Size Mistakes
- PENIS SIZE AND CONDOM FIT
- COMMON CONDOM SIZE ISSUES AND MISTAKES
- WHAT CAN YOU DO?
- Condom Sizing: The Basics
- How to Choose the Right Size for Your Girth and Length
- How do you broach it with your partner if the condom is too big?
- The Fix
- How To Know If You’re Using The Correct Condom Size
- Overcoming Fear of Condom-Associated Erectile Dysfunction
- 1. Talk to your doctor.
- 2. Size matters.
- 3. Consider lubrication.
- 4. Don’t stop.
5 Condom Mistakes You Don’t Want to Make
It seems straightforward — but if you’ve ever made a mistake when using a condom, you’re not alone. Studies show that plenty of men slipup with this contraceptive standby.
Condoms are a very effective (and inexpensive) form of birth control and STD prevention. But if you use a condom incorrectly, it could result in a number of problems: An unwanted pregnancy, a sexually transmitted disease — even erectile dysfunction. In fact, a recent survey of college-aged men found that 32 percent had experienced erectile problems because of condoms — broken condoms, condoms put on upside down, or condoms that get taken off too soon.
Your first mistake (before you even open up the package) is forgoing the “condom conversation” with your partner. Studies show that men who neglected to talk about condoms before sex often experienced anxiety and embarrassment — in turn, this had a negative effect on their performance.
Here are some common condom errors — and how to avoid them.
Mistake No. 1: Picking the Wrong Condom
Condoms come in all different types and sizes. Condoms that are too tight can choke off blood supply, which contributes to erectile dysfunction. And if you choose a condom that’s too big, it can slip off during intercourse, which not only defeats the purpose of wearing the condom, but can also undo an erection.
Condoms also come with or without lubrication — when a condom’s not sufficiently lubricated, this could mean erectile trouble. But keep in mind: “If you are using a latex condom and you need to add lubricant, it is important to only use a water-based lubricant. An oil-based lubricant will break down the condom,” warns urologist Bruce Gilbert, MD PhD, director of reproductive and sexual medicine at the North Shore LIJ Health System on Long Island, N.Y. This can make the condom sticky and, worse, unreliable.
Mistake No. 2: Bad Timing
“An important rule on timing is to make sure a condom goes on and comes off an erect penis,” advises Dr. Gilbert. If you try to put your condom on before you are completely erect, it will not go on easily and you could get off to a bad start.
Leaving a condom on until your penis loses its erection is dangerous because it allows semen to leak out from the bottom.
Mistake No. 3: Bad Technique
Studies show that common condom blunders include putting the condom on upside down, unrolling the condom before trying to put it on, and not leaving space at the tip of the condom. “Not leaving space at the tip or having an air bubble at the tip can be uncomfortable and can lead to a popped condom,” warns Gilbert.
Figuring out how to put your condom on in front of your partner can be embarrassing. The best advice? Read the directions and practice putting your condom on during a trial run.
Mistake No. 4: Storing Condoms Where They Don’t Belong
“A condom stored in a wallet for months before being used may not be a reliable form of birth control. Condoms have use-by dates, so you need to pay attention,” says Gilbert.
Condoms should be stored in a cool, dry place. Always check to make sure your condom is approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) — and don’t use a condom after its expiration date. Condoms stored in wallets or glove compartments beyond their use-by dates can come out stiff and dry. Not only will they be hard to put on and uncomfortable to use, they also won’t be safe.
Mistake No. 5: Missing a Latex Allergy
“If you have irritation or swelling, or your partner has irritation or swelling, after using a latex condom, you need to check with your doctor. It could be a latex allergy,” warns Gilbert.
Latex allergy can cause a condition known as contact dermatitis, meaning the part of your body that touches latex gets swollen, red, and itchy. Going forward, be aware of the allergy and opt for condoms made from alternative materials (such as lamb intestinal lining or polyurethane).
Must-Follow Rules for Your Rubbers
Take the time to pick the right condom for you, considering factors such as size and lubrication. And never use sharp objects or your teeth to open your condom package.
It’s important to know how to use your condom properly (practice in private!), and to discuss condom use with your partner before you’re both in the mood.
What if the condom is too big?
Whether XL, snug, ribbed, or blue, if you look hard enough, there’s a condom for you! Condoms are available in a wide variety of lengths and widths (not to mention colors, flavors, materials, and textures). Since manufacturers of condoms don’t have standardized sizing, it can be difficult to find the right size. The best thing to do is try a bunch of different sizes until you find the condom that fits you best. A firm yet comfortable fit decreases the chances that a condom will slip off during the heat of the moment. You may want to try them out on the erect penis before you hit the sack-this could help you find the safest and most comfortable option.
It may seem difficult to find smaller-sized condoms because brands might not want to market their smaller size. But remember — penises come (pun intended) in all shapes and sizes, and snugger fit condoms are enjoyed by big and small guys alike. There is no shame in purchasing a “snugger fit” condom if that is what lights your fireworks! Online condom stores, such as Undercover Condoms and Condom Depot, often have lists of brands of smaller and snugger condoms that they carry. You can even buy a variety pack of smaller-sized condoms. Major brands that carry smaller-sized condoms include:
- Durex “Enhanced Pleasure” condoms
- LifeStyles “Snugger Fit” condoms
- Beyond Seven, a Japanese brand that makes a variety of smaller condoms
Before you check the expiration date and unwrap it, here’s something to note: some condoms are not approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), so it’s highly recommended to look at the condom package to make sure that it will protect against pregnancy and HIV transmission. So, avid condom consumer, try them all until you find your favorite. Shopping has never been so much fun!
Practicing safe sex won’t do you much good if your condom is too big, or too small.
It’s been a better than average few weeks for anyone with a small penis. As you may have heard, Science Has Revealed the Average Penis Size, and it’s only 3.6 inches.
But having a diminutive dick doesn’t make condom purchasing any easier. In fact, the smaller your penis, the more complicated it can be to find a condom that fits correctly.
Related: Pick the Perfect Condom for Your Penis
Why? Because condoms have traditionally been manufactured as one-size-fits-all, and that size isn’t small. Many guys are too bashful to shop around, so they buy the first condom brand they recognize at a drug store, and end up having an uncomfortable—or worse, unsafe—sexual experience.
Related: 15 Facts You Didn’t Know About Your Penis
The British researchers who conducted the penis size study stated in their published report that they hoped the data would be used to “investigate the relationship between condom failure and penile dimensions.” Research on the topic have yielded mixed results.
According to SIECUS, the Sexuality Information and Education Council of the United States, condoms fall off during sex up to 5.4 percent of the time, or slip down the penis without falling off up to 13.1 percent of the time.
But another study, by the Indian Council of Medical Research, found that up to 20 percent of condoms fail to work properly because they’re just not the right size.
A Google search shows that condom slippage is certainly a popular item. “Condom comes off” will bring back 1.4 million results. A search for “condom too big” gets 3.9 million results. And what about “condom too small”? A measly 1.2 million.
“Small size is an area of the market that’s being ignored,” says Melissa White, the CEO of Lucky Bloke, an online condom subscription service. And to make matters worse, the size information on many condom packages is less than helpful.
Take the Trojan Magnum, celebrated by rappers as the macho standard: It’s actually smaller in width than Trojan’s SUPRA Lubricated, and about the same length as the Thintensity Lubricated.
Related: Pick the Perfect Lube for Your Penis
“Unfortunately, the sizes many manufacturers give aren’t accurate,” says Kara Spitzkeit, of Condom Depot, a website that’s been around “since the beginning of the Internet.” In fact, she adds, “a lot of companies go by a really weird ego scale—a sort of secret Da Vinci code.”
Related: The Worst Masturbation Mistakes You Can Make
Less than 10 brands available in the U.S. sell condoms that could truly be classified as “small,” says White. Meanwhile, although only about 15 to 20 percent of men need larger condoms, the market features more than 30 donkey kong condoms.
The good news is, things may be changing. A rising number of condom websites are giving customers new size options, and challenging them to be more honest about what’s dangling between their legs.
Lucky Bloke’s website prominently invites you to “find your condom size” by seeing if, and how, your erect penis fits inside the cardboard tube from a roll of toilet paper.
How does it work? If your penis has plenty of room inside the empty tube, almost too much, you need a small condom. (This accounts for 35 percent of men, their website claims.) If you have just enough room—not too tight, but not too loose—you need a medium-sized condom. (About 50 percent of men.)
And if the tube is extremely tight and almost painful, you’re in the large category (15 to 20 percent of men).
Related: The 4 Best-Feeling Condoms
Spitzkeit writes a blog for Condom Depot’s site, and her most popular post—which went “mildly viral,” she says, with a half-million shares—involved measuring the more than 100 condoms the company sells online, both in length and girth, in inches and centimeters.
Related: 15 Mistakes That Make Condoms Less Effective
A clue, says White: Girth is more important than length when it comes to choosing a condom.
Then there’s Condom-sizes.org, which features tips for measuring yourself that don’t involve toilet paper rolls.
They include size charts for condoms available in different countries, and patient answers to hundreds of readers around the world confused about what size condoms they should be using. (Some readers of the site appear unable to hold back the snark in this section of the site.)
Unfortunately, as with beer and soccer, Europe is way ahead of the U.S. when it comes to addressing the issue of size and condoms. Vijay Sarathi, an analyst at Technavio, the company behind the recently-issued “Condom Market US 2015-2019,” says so-called “custom-fitted” condoms are “already a hit” in Europe, and could soon be among the “most emerging trends” in the U.S.
TheyFit, based in London, makes 95 sizes of condoms, and customers are encouraged to measure themselves to see which one is right for them. But they are not yet available stateside.
As with anything having to do with safe sex, the responsibility is yours. Find out the true length of your penis—not for bragging rights, but to make sure you’re buying a condom that’s doing its job.
Related: How to Pleasure a Woman—the Men’s Health Guide to Becoming a Master Lover
These days, condoms are like coffee. You don’t just walk into a Starbucks and say, “Give me a coffee.”
When picking a condom, you need to be more specific: Will it be a tall, a grande or a venti?
For a list of small, regular, and large sized condoms, check out this Condom Size Chart for popular U.S. brands. You can also try to find your perfect fit by using the site’s Condom Size Calculator.
5 Common Misconceptions About Condoms, Because You Can’t Be “Too Big”
Did you know that February 14 was also National Condom Day? When talking about condoms, it is important to address the many misconceptions about condoms, like that someone’s penis can be too big for all prophylactics or that common household products can be makeshift condoms. Myths about condoms have very real world effects, as incorrect assumptions lead people to use condoms ineffectively or forego condoms altogether. Studies have shown a direct link between misunderstandings about condoms and unprotected sex and the 2015 SKYN Condoms Millennial Sex Survey found that level of education directly impacts whether or not someone is more likely to use a condom.
I spoke with Dr. Emily Morse, a sex expert and host of the podcast “Sex With Emily”, about some of these misconceptions. While our conversation focused on reasons that people choose not to use condoms, we also discussed common mistakes that people make in the storage and application of condoms, causing them to be less effective.
Have you ever kept a stash of condoms in your car’s glove compartment just in case you ever needed one unexpectedly? Bad idea. There is too much heat in the compartment that can break down the condom. Similarly, keeping a condom in your wallet or pocket, as convenient as it may seem, can damage the condom through friction. Don’t open a condom packet with your teeth; you risk biting and ripping the condom. Don’t unroll a condom before putting it on, and throw away a condom if you rolled it down the wrong way (there is a risk of semen or pre-cum already collecting at the tip). Never reuse a condom and never wear two condoms at once.
But aside from myths about how to store them, there are plenty of myths and misconceptions around condom usage that we need to talk about, because you should never be made to feel bad for insisting on a condom.
1. You Can’t Be “Too Big”
LifeStylesUSA on YouTube
In this video for the #NoExcuses campaign, Morse successfully stuffs multiple cucumbers into a condom without causing breakage. Condoms come in numerous sizes, lengths, and widths so that someone can’t be “too big” for a condom. Remember the dope 17-year old Swedish singer, Zara Larsson, who Instagrammed a photo of a condom on her leg to prove that all men claiming they are too big can “take a seat”? The National Health Services states that condoms stretch “up to 18 inches round”. Now, it is possible to be too big or too small for certain condoms, and wearing the wrong size can make the prophylactic less effective. Check out this sizing chart by LifeStyles for help finding your perfect condom.
2. Putting On A Condom Doesn’t Have To Kill Your Vibe
Another common complaint about condoms is that stopping to put one on ruins the mood because it takes too long to do. In more videos for the #NoExcuses campaign, Morse successfully rolls condoms onto three squashes in 10 seconds and manages to get one on a banana while blindfolded and wearing an oven mitt. Morse says you can also reduce time by making sure the condoms are nearby when engaging in sexual activity. She recommends keeping them next to your bed or in your top drawer. Morse also suggests practicing to roll on condoms on your own, whether on a banana or your own penis. The more you practice, the faster you can do it.
The bottom line though, says Morse, is that “condoms don’t ruin the mood. Not having protection ruins the mood.” Contracting an STI ruins the mood. Additionally, Morse recommends turning the act of putting on a condom into visual foreplay. “I think that you could put the condom on in different positions. Take the 69 position. He can be pleasuring you and you can put the condom on him.” She also suggests combining oral sex with the act of putting on a condom. These are just a couple ways to incorporate condoms into sexual activity, rather than viewing their application as a “break” from sexual activity. It’s all about the attitude!
3. Don’t Assume That All Condoms Take Away Pleasure
I’m pretty sure that all of us have been told by our peers or even those older than us that condoms are the worst in terms of physical feeling. Now, it is very true, for example, that some women find it more difficult to orgasm when their partner is wearing a condom. However, it is also true that not all condoms are created equal and some are better than others. Morse stresses that it may take trying a few different brands and styles of condoms before discovering the best type and fit for you and your partner. “Yes, sex can be more sensitive without condoms, but you have to play around with different kinds. I think that condoms are like trying on clothes or cosmetics. You need to try and see what feels right to you. What might dull someone else’s experience might be better for you.”
Regardless of the type of condom used, Morse explains that lube can really help. In addition to applying lube outside of the condom, Morse suggests adding a few drops of lube to the inside of the condom “can really enhance pleasure” for all parties. Just make sure to use a water-based lube, not an oil-based lube (water-based is safer for the condom).
A lot of people’s aversions to condoms leading to desensitization are psychological, Morse says. They had one bad experience or have been told that condoms make sex bad, and so they are now in their heads and focused on feeling the condom whenever one is used.
4. Don’t Try DIY Condoms
“Being safe is really about an education,” Morse says. And without comprehensive sexual education, people are left thinking that they can create makeshift condoms out of household objects — take a young woman who, at 17, asked her boyfriend to wrap his penis in Saran wrap when she realized they both were sans condom. Never do anything like that. Ever. Morse continues, “You do not want to go DIY with sexual health and protection. Plastic bags or any other household material are not going to replace condoms.”
And there are countless reasons why. Says Morse, “Condoms are made for a specific purpose. They are tested for maximum effectiveness. It’s not healthy to put anything inside of you that isn’t sanitary,” like a balloon, a chip bag, a sheet of plastic wrap, etc. “Condoms have to be snug and made of the right materials. You cannot improvise. You’ll have to leave the house to get a condom or just not have sex.”
5. “These Are Not Your Grandfather’s Condoms”
“Every penis is going to experience a different sensation. You have to really try different condoms and different styles, textures, lengths, and widths,” says Morse. Thankfully, “These are not your grandfather’s condoms,” and technology and research has provided us with a lot of different options.
For starters, Morse recommends the SKYN Elite, which is 20 percent thinner than the original SKYN condoms. There are also ribbed condoms and condoms like Everlast Intense, which contain a special lubricant to help delay ejaculation.
Any polyisoprene condom (which is great for someone with a latex allergy) generally feels more natural. There are also animal membrane condoms (did you know that all condoms used to be made from animal intestines in eras gone by?!). The most popular animal skin condoms these days are lambskin condoms by companies like Naturalamb. Obviously, this is not ideal for the sexually-active vegans and vegetarians among us. IMPORTANT: Animal skin condoms prevent pregnancy, but they do not prevent STIs. Sperm cannot get through microscopic holes in the condom, but viruses can. Brands like Beyond Seven, Crown, and Kimono are known for their “ultra-thin” condoms, which can increase pleasure and feel more like skin-to-skin contact.
Some condoms are also specialized to provide extra pleasure “for her” or “for him.” The Pleasure Plus condom, Cosmopolitan writes, “comes with a flared tiny pouch-like top with internal ribbing, creating extra friction as his member goes in and out.” Likewise, Trojan condoms For Her Pleasure have an “‘enlarged head (causing heat-induced friction)’ and ribbed shaft to hopefully awaken the g-spot.”
Deciding what’s best for you and your partner can even be fun. “Think of condoms like sex toys – you look forward to trying new and different ones with your partner, says Morse. “Trying them all can be a fun experiment… go online and order them together. Communicating together enhances connections and intimacy.”
Want more of Bustle’s Sex and Relationships coverage? Check out our video on sex positions for small penises:
Bustle on YouTube
Images: Andrew Zaeh/Bustle; Giphy (4)
How to avoid 6 common condom problems
We’ve all been there. Things are heating up and you both know exactly what you want to happen next. One of you whispers those five crucial words: “Do you have a condom?” and the other produces one (or, better still, several) triumphantly. You’re happily getting it on when you realize the condom tore or slipped off…
Condoms are easy, cheap, and offer protection against STIs and accidental pregnancy. Here’s the thing—they only work if you use them the right way. To help you do that, we’ve teamed up with Melissa White, CEO and founder of Lucky Bloke, to tell you how to avoid the six most common condom problems.
1. Help—the condom broke!
The good news is there are many ways to reduce the chance of a condom breaking. If you find yourself dealing with a broken condom situation, here’s what to do.
What now? If you realize right away (before anyone has gotten close to climaxing) that the condom broke, you can throw out the broken condom and try another one. Before you start again though you should make sure there isn’t something wrong with your condoms. Are the packages intact? Are your condoms expired? Were they exposed to extreme heat or cold? If not, you can use a new condom and just watch out for breakage.
If there’s a possibility of preejaculate or ejaculate, the safest thing to do is take emergency contraception (EC). You can take EC up to five days after you have unprotected sex but most kinds work better the sooner you take them. Here’s how to get some. You may also want to get tested for sexually transmitted infections (STIs) if you’re not sure of your partner’s status. (And remember, you definitely can’t tell if someone has an STI just by looking!)
So it doesn’t happen again: Condoms can work very well when you use them right. If you’ve had a condom break, here are a few things to check to make sure it doesn’t happen again.
Size. When someone repeatedly has experiences with condoms breaking, it may mean the condom is too small. This doesn’t always mean a guy requires a large condom, though. A different kind of standard (or medium) size may work.
Lube. Using lube can make using a condom a lot more pleasurable. Pro-tip—apply a small amount of lube to the penis before applying the condom. (If you are using the proper size condom, this should not cause the condom to slip.) Use a generous application of lube to the outside.
Packaging. It’s important to make sure you’re opening the condom package carefully. We know you may be tempted to rip it open or use your teeth to get things going asap, but opening the package the wrong way can tear the condom.
Putting it on. To make sure you put the condom on correctly, be sure to pinch the tip while rolling it on. It’s important to leave room room for the finale!
2. Uh oh…looks like the condom leaked.
If you notice semen anywhere outside the condom during sex or after, it’s time to take extra steps to make sure you don’t get pregnant.
What now? Again, taking EC as soon as possible is the best way to reduce your risk of accidental pregnancy. Getting tested for STIs is a good idea if you don’t know your partner’s status.
So it doesn’t happen again: If a condom is leaking from the base it’s probably too big. This happens more often than one might think, as 35% of men require a smaller than standard condoms. Smaller condoms are rarely available at your local store but you can get them through websites like Lucky Bloke, Condomania, and Condom Jungle. By simply switching to a condom that fits properly you will avoid this situation in the future. If you’re using a standard condom, try small. If you’re using a large condom, try standard.
If the condom is leaking from the top or the middle, it could have a tear—see the section above on broken condoms.
3. The condom fell off…and got stuck!
This one can be scary, especially if you have trouble finding and retrieving the condom. Don’t panic.
What now? If the condom falls off, once again it’s time to take EC and go for STI testing. If it gets stuck inside you or your partner, here’s Cosmo’s advice: “lie back, relax, and insert one or two fingers inside of you and try to pull it out”. Don’t panic if you have trouble getting the condom out—hopefully it will come out on its own after a bit. If it doesn’t, head to your health care provider to remove it.
So it doesn’t happen again: This is another situation where the condom is probably too big—try a smaller size.
4. The condom doesn’t feel good and he can’t get hard.
If a condom is too tight or uncomfortable, he can lose his erection. It’s not you, it’s the condom, so don’t feel embarrassed—you can still save the night!
What now? There’s always the classic midnight condom run to get a different kind of condom, but if that’s not an option, opt for a cuddle and a movie and next time you hang out, come prepared.
So it doesn’t happen again: Again, it’s all about the fit. Even if a condom is not too tight, sometimes the fit is just uncomfortable. A good way to avoid this is to try out different kinds of condoms. (We like the sound of that!) Lucky Bloke has a “Not Sure What Size to Buy” condom sampler if you think size could be the issue. They also offer lots of other samplers if you just want to explore your options. You can also get variety packs through a bunch of other online retailers like Amazon, Condom Jungle, Sustain, and Condomania.
5. I think we’re allergic to condoms…
If you’re getting down and dirty and one of you starts getting itchy and irritated, it may be an allergic reaction to the condom you’re using.
What now? Give it a rest for the time-being and ditch the condom you’re using—no one wants to feel irritated! Go see your health care provider to find out what’s going on down there.
So it doesn’t happen again: If you’re allergic to latex, there are some great alternatives out there that protect from STIs and pregnancy and offer amazing sensitivity, heightened feeling, and heat transfer. Note that lambskin condoms, while in the non-latex category, are not ideal for everyone since they protect against pregnancy but not against STIs like HIV. Other non-latex condoms provide dual protection from pregnancy and STIs.
6. But won’t this cling wrap do the same thing?
Everybody knows someone who knows someone who used a plastic bag that one time. This is not a good idea. It seems like a no-brainer, but if you are turned on and can’t find a condom anywhere, cling wrap starts to sound more appealing. If you find yourself facing a spontaneous decision about whether to use anything for a condom other than a real condom, here’s what to do.
What now: Stop right there. Any material other than an actual condom will not work to prevent pregnancy and protect you from STIs. Go on a spontaneous condom run—you’d be surprised where you can find condoms!
So it doesn’t happen again: Your best bet for preventing this problem in the future is to carry condoms with you. They’re easy to tuck away into pockets and purses and it’s sexy to be prepared. Just make sure you don’t keep them too long in a pocket or purse or expose them to extreme temperatures.
What we’ve learned…
Most of these mishaps could be avoided by using the proper size condom. If your partner needs a snugger-fit condom, you might feel uncomfortable about approaching the subject. “I’d always suggest focusing on the pleasure aspect—you both will benefit.” says Melissa. “If you are using a condom that fits, your focus will be on each other and not on the condom.”
If you are having condom woes, a better fit condom—or a higher-quality condom—is going to be the solution in most cases. And if you’re looking to explore your condom options, Lucky Bloke is offering a 25% discount for all their products with the coupon code BEDSIDER.
Problems with the fit (size) of condoms are really common.
Multiple scientific studies dating back to 1993 each identified that 40-45% of men suffer problems with traditional ‘one sizes fits all’ condoms not fitting them properly:
– the condom is too long
– the condom is too short
– the condom is too tight
– the condom is too loose
– the condom is difficult to put on quickly
– the condom slips or falls off during use
– a combination of these problems
In turn this causes issues that put many men off using condoms full stop – for example a lack of feeling during sex (“I can’t feel anything”) or trouble maintaining their erection.
Certainly don’t feel embarrassed if you are experiencing an issue with the size (fit) of your condom – it’s a common problem. If you read on you can learn about the most common issues with traditional one-size-fits-all condoms, and how TheyFit can fix each one.
Discretion advised: hand drawn illustrations of erections follow below:
Problem: The Condom is too Tight – “I can’t feel anything during sex”
AFFECTS: 10-15% of men
CAUSE: the condom is too narrow, so it has to stretch too much to fit the penis. This excessive stretching force causes a feeling of tightness and discomfort.
ISSUES: erection-loss may occur and orgasm may be difficult or impossible to achieve. In extreme cases a red or purple mark may be left in the flesh. Many men who complain they “can’t feel anything” when wearing a condom, are wearing a condom that is too tight for them. It’s why using a supposedly thinner latex condom doesn’t fix the issue – the condom is still too narrow, and the tightness remains.
SOLUTION: use the correct width (wider) of condom – click here to get fitted correctly.
Problem: The Condom is too Loose – “it slips or falls off during sex”
AFFECTS: 15-20% of men
CAUSE: the condom is too wide, so sits loosely on the penis.
ISSUES: during use, the condom may slip or fall off entirely. The sensation of sex is not transmitted correctly. Erection-loss may occur and orgasm may be difficult to achieve.
SOLUTION: use the correct width (narrower) of condom – click here to get fitted correctly.
Problem: The Condom is too Long – “it bunches up at the bottom”
AFFECTS: 60-70% of men
CAUSE: the condom is too long, so inches of unrolled latex bunch up at the base of the penis – in most cases equivalent to 2 or 3 inches of material. This looks odd, and acts like a ‘tourniquet’ (rubber band) on the penis, causing a feeling of tightness and discomfort.
ISSUES: the excess material can shuffle up the shaft during sex, resulting in the condom hanging off the penis and increasing the chance it falls off entirely. Erection-loss may occur and orgasm may be difficult to achieve.
SOLUTION: use the correct length (shorter) of condom – click here to get fitted correctly.
Problem: The Condom is too Short – “it doesn’t cover everything up”
AFFECTS: 5-10% of men
CAUSE: the condom is too short, and fails to cover the entire shaft. This may decrease the effectiveness of the condom during use.
ISSUES: the ring at the base of the condom may ‘snag’ during intercourse, resulting in the condom being pulled off.
SOLUTION: use the correct length (longer) of condom – click here to get fitted correctly
Problem: The Condom is Hanging Off
AFFECTS: 30-35% of men
CAUSE: the condom is too long, and hangs off the end of the erection.
ISSUES: the excess material increases the chance that the whole condom is pulled off during sex. Erection-loss may occur and orgasm may be difficult to achieve.
SOLUTION: use the correct length (shorter) of condom – click here to get fitted correctly.
Problem: Foreskin Drag
AFFECTS: 10-15% of men
CAUSE: the condom is caught inside the foreskin, and is dragged up the shaft during sex. This may decrease the effectiveness of the condom during use.
ISSUES: because of a poor fit, the foreskin envelops the condom, pulling it up the shaft.
SOLUTION: use a narrower width (tighter) of condom – click here to get fitted correctly
The Correct Fit
So, what is a correctly fitting condom supposed to look like?
The condom should cover the whole erection length without a significant excess of material bunching at the base, or hanging off of the end. Width-wise, the condom size should be ‘snug’ – not too tight, but not too loose either.
TheyFit’s research into condom size (fit) found nearly all men can feel the difference that just 2mm of nominal width makes, to the sensations that they feel during condom safe sex:
Click here to get fitted correctly.
The Solution to Most Condom Issues is Fit (Size)
The problem of:
– the condom is too long
– the condom is too short
– the condom is too tight
– the condom is too loose
– the condom is difficult to put on quickly
– the condom slips or falls off during use
– a combination of these problems
is really easy to fix. If you struggle with condom sizes, or find that you can’t feel anything when you wear a condom, try a TheyFit custom fit condom on for size.
When your condom fits better, it’s going to feel better too. So as well as making the condom fit you properly and feel more comfortable during use, you’re going to enjoy using it more too. It’s really obvious when you think about it – a brand-new, common sense approach to finding the correct condom size for your requirements.
In fact, we’re so confident that you’ll absolutely love your new custom fit condoms that we offer a 100% satisfaction guarantee to every customer. If you’re not completely happy, we’ll refund the entire cost of your purchase, no questions asked. Our guarantee applies to our whole range – small condoms, large condoms and medium-sized ones.
We’re the only condom brand that can offer such a satisfaction guarantee, because we’re the only condom brand that make custom-fit condoms.
But we don’t find many people ask for their money back:
Common Condom Myths
You can learn more about some common myths surrounding condoms, and condom sizes, including that they are supposed to be “one size fits all” by clicking here.
(illustrations by Hackett Illustration)
How A Condom Should Fit: Common Size Mistakes
When we talk about how a condom should fit, we often like to refer to terms such as “small,” “large,” or “extra large.” What that doesn’t tell us is how it relates to actually fit. Thus, problems with the fit (size) are really common which in turn can put many men off from using condoms. If it were poorly fitted, it can undermine condom effectiveness in preventing STIs and pregnancy, as well as interfere with the pleasure and sensations for both parties during sex.
PENIS SIZE AND CONDOM FIT
Let’s first explore the effect of penis size on how a condom should fit. The average range of erect penis length for most men is approximately 5-6.5 inches with the average circumference at 4-5 inches. Both length and girth affect how a condom fits. If a condom is too short, the risk of STI transmission is increased due to the exposed skin. Meanwhile, if your girth is above average then a standard condom would feel too uncomfortably tight. Read on to find out the two most common issues.
COMMON CONDOM SIZE ISSUES AND MISTAKES
1. CONDOM TOO LOOSE
Condom slipping or falling off completely? According to SIECUS, condoms fall off the penis in 0.6% to 5.4% acts of vaginal intercourse and may slip down the penis without falling off in 3.4% to 13.1% of acts of vaginal intercourse. This is caused by the condom being too wide that it sits too loosely on the penis and a loss of pleasure can occur due to the transference of sex sensations being unable to transfer properly.
2. CONDOM TOO TIGHT
If there are discomfort and/or feelings of tightness then the condom is too narrow. This causes the latex to have to stretch too much in order to fit the penis that it can lead to loss of sensation. Hence, why men may complain that they “can’t feel anything during sex.” If this sounds familiar, check to see if your condom is too small.
WHAT CAN YOU DO?
As a consumer, it’s important that you measure yourself. Brands are being more transparent and providing accurate information regarding sizing and providing helpful charts so that customers can be well informed. However, to know which are the best condoms, first understand your own needs!
Being honest is the most important thing when it comes to what size condom is right for you. Besides that, it’s also important to know how to wear a condom correctly. With the above in mind, everyone will benefit and no sacrifices need to be made between safety and pleasure.
On the manufacturing side, although condoms come in different sizes, their design is quite dynamic to be able to fit a majority of men. As a manufacturer, we go to great lengths to perform safety tests to ensure its high performance. These safety tests include the air pressure test and water burst test whereby the condom gets inflated and filled with water into different volumes to assess how the condom would perform under vigorous conditions.
Aoni’s Ultrathin 001 series will stretch to fit different lengths, leaving a little extra length at the tip to allow room to ejaculate. We currently have two different condom sizes- 52 mm and 54 mm with a 56mm option in the works for quarter one of 2017. Even though it is tempting to grab a larger fit, we always recommend users to try the classic fit first to prevent chances of slippage.
Buy condoms online now at Aoni.
Your first experience with condoms may have been stretching one over a banana in the ninth grade. Maybe you remember fumbling with one before your first time in the backseat of a car. You could’ve gotten your first condoms for free in health class, or maybe you didn’t get a sex education at all. Along the way, most of us learned that condoms can be used for safer sex and to prevent unwanted pregnancy, but when was the last time you stopped to wonder if you are using the right size condom?
Personally, I’ve never given much thought to condoms — mainly because I’m a huge lesbian — but also because sex education in the U.S. is sorely lacking. It turns out that I may not be alone. In fact, according to a 2016 report from the Guttmacher Institute that analyzed data collected between 2011 and 2013 by the Centers for Disease Control, 43 percent of teen girls and 57 percent of teen boys aren’t taught about birth control before their first experiences with sex.
Regardless of where you fall on the gender and sexuality spectrum, we could all benefit from having some basic knowledge about condoms. Ahead are several things you should know about condoms and their sizes.
Condom Sizing: The Basics
Size matters — when it comes to condoms, at least. Before we get to the nitty-gritty about why finding the right fit really matters in terms of your health, let’s start with the basics. There are three standard condom sizes that should be easy to find at your local drug store, sex shop, or online. Here’s some more about those options:
Small (or snug) condoms:
Small condoms are the best fit for penises (and sex toys) up to two inches in width and seven inches in length.
People with penises that are two to two and a half inches in width and up to seven and a half inches in length will find that standard condoms are the best size.
For people with penises that are just over two and a half inches wide and go up to around nine inches long, large condoms are the best option.
Most people with penises can use standard-size condoms, and when a wearer complains that a condom is too small or too tight, it usually has less to do with the condom length and more to do with the snugness at the tip. Condom tips are not elastic and therefore can feel restricting for some folks. In this case, condoms with an enlarged-reservoir tip may feel more comfortable.
Certified sex educator Corinne Kai explains that most nerve endings in the penis are located at its head, making it highly sensitive. Kai also says that there are condoms marketed as “ultra-sensitive” or “featherweight,” which means that the latex barrier is thinner and might be more comfortable for people who find the reservoir tips on traditional condoms uncomfortable.
When someone’s penis is indeed too big for the condoms they’re using, the comfort and safety of all parties can be impacted. If this is the case, use a large size so as not to endanger either one of you. But what happens if the wearer is smaller than average? “You definitely don’t want to use a condom that is too big if someone is on the smaller size, as semen could leak out the sides of the condom or the condom could slide off prematurely,” explains Kai.
Just keep in mind that there is some variance between brands on what constitutes snug, regular, and large or extra large condoms, so do make sure you check the measurements on the pack or online description.
How to Choose the Right Size for Your Girth and Length
Now that we’ve gone over the various sizes, we need to talk about how to choose the right size condom. And while it may feel a bit strange, taking a measurement of the penis is the best and most accurate way to determine what size condoms you or your partner should be using. Remember, measurements should be taken when the penis is erect, and a penis’s length should be measured from the tip to where it meets the pubic bone. Girth (or circumference) is measured around the thickest part of the erection, which can vary for each person.
Despite the reality that many of us don’t actually like an enormous penis, there’s still an idea that bigger = better.
Which is why the realization that a condom is too big for you could be upsetting.
Unfortunately, if a condom is too big it won’t work properly, so you really do have to face up to it.
If a condom is too large then there’s a very good chance that it will slip off during sex, which means a chance of getting someone pregnant or spreading or catching an STI.
Also, a too-big condom is going to reduce your sensation and make sex less pleasurable.
So how do you tell if the condom is too small? According to Durex if it slips off easily, or feels baggy, it’s too big.
Experts suggest that if your penis girth is below 4.7 inches (119mm) when fully erect you should think about sizing down your condom.
Remember, just because a standard condom is on the bigger side, doesn’t mean there’s anything wrong with your penis. You might be slightly smaller than average, or you might just a different shape from average. Either way, most women aren’t obsessed with size, and if you’ve got a repeat customer then she’s clearly not bothered about it.
Having a condom be too small can also be an issue. An overstretched condom is likely to be uncomfortable, and may well split during sex. If in doubt, try a larger condom, but it’s worth giving it a go solo or with a partner who is on the pill (unless you want babies) when you’ve both been tested.
You don’t want to start auditioning condoms by size on a one night stand.
How do you broach it with your partner if the condom is too big?
It’s never going to be easy to tell your other half that the condom they’re wearing is too big. However satisfied you are with that penis, it’s going to sound like a criticism.
The best advice we can give you? Buy smaller in a different brand and hope the difference is just put down to the make, rather than the size.
If you do have to have the conversation, reassure your partner that you love having sex with them and that their body is perfect for you, that their size is perfect as far as you’re concerned and that you’re not complaining for a moment.
A bit of ego stroking is probably needed at this point – many men have absorbed the messgge that their penis size is a reflection of their power, which is deeply unfair.
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Condoms are still the most effective way to prevent pregnancy and sexually transmitted diseases. Men have been using them for over 11,000 years, after all, so the technology is pretty sound. But a condom’s got to fit right—not so loose it slips off or so tight it breaks. This is where knowing your exact size really helps.
The most important measurement for picking a condom is girth, not length. To get a very rough estimate, slide a toilet paper roll around your erect penis. If there is extra room, you qualify as “small.” If it fits about right, then “medium.” If it is too tight, “large.” Cool trick. That, or use a tape measure or a piece of string to measure from the base to the tip of the penis while erect. Take the width measurement as well, around the penis at mid-shaft.
Keep those numbers handy. Though it’s not an exact science, they’ll help you figure out if you’re sized small, medium, or large. Here’s the approximate breakdown in condom sizes, and some recommendations.
Length: 6 to 7 inches
Width: 1.7 to 2 inches
Recommendations: Glyde Slimfit (6.7″ x 1.93″); Lifestyles Snugger Fit (7″ x 1.92″)
Buy Glyde Slimfit ($15 for 12), amazon.com
Buy Lifestyles Snugger Fit ($18 for 24), amazon.com
Length: 7 to 7.9 inches
Width: 2.05 to 2.13 inches
Recommendations: Lifestyles Skyn (7.50″ x 2.09″); Kimono MicroThin Large (7.68″ x 2.05″)
Buy Lifestyles Skyn ($23 for 48), amazon.com
Buy Kimono MicroThin Large ($18 for 12), amazon.com
Length: 8 inches and up
Width: 2.13 to 2.3 inches
Recommendations: Trojan Magnum (8.07″ x 2.13″); Glyde Maxi (8.1″ x 2.25″)
Buy Trojan Magnum ($13 for 36), amazon.com
Buy Glyde Maxi ($15 for 12), amazon.com
Size: Extra Large
Length: Under 8 inches
Width: 2.3 inches and up
Recommendation: Pasante Super King (7.9″x 2.72″)
Buy Pasante Super King ($15 for 12), amazon.com
And if you’d like to take all the guesswork out of it, condom company One gives you 60 sizes to choose from—including condoms larger and smaller than what you’ll find at CVS—and a kit to help you measure yourself exactly. Sixty condom sizes to choose from should cover it.
Related Story Sarah Rense Sarah Rense is the Associate Lifestyle Editor at Esquire, where she covers tech, food, drink, home, and more.
How To Know If You’re Using The Correct Condom Size
Are you sure the condoms you use with your partner fit correctly? Here’s everything you need to know about how to find the perfect love glove and why it’s extremely important that you do.
What happens when a condom is too loose?
If the condom is too big, it can slide down or off, which leaves you open to STDs and pregnancy. A loose condom doesn’t feel too good either and can make it difficult for both partners to reach orgasm. It should be a snug fit without any moving around.
What happens when a condom is too tight?
The condom can break easily if it’s too tight, again, leaving you open to pregnancy and STDs. You might be able to tell by looking at it because it looks uncomfortable, and it might leave a mark after taking it off. The guy should be able to feel if it’s uncomfortably tight too. It should be snug but not bursting at the seams.
The good news is that you may already use the right kind.
Some people complain about the feel of condoms, but the fit itself may be fine. Most standard size condoms fit the average penis well, but there might be a problem if the guy is smaller or larger than average. What’s average? According to a study reviewing 15,000 men, the average penis length is around 5.2 inches when erect, while the average girth or circumference is 4.6 inches. So what’s important to know if you think you need a different size?
First, get measurements.
If you want to get started on your search, get penis measurements first. Measure the length with a ruler from the base to the tip. Measure the circumference by using a string to wrap around the largest (usually middle) part of the erect penis. The straighten out the string and measure it with a ruler. There you go!
Condom types actually vary more in width than in length.
Snugger fit condom widths are usually slightly less than 2 inches, standard condom widths are around 2 inches, and large condoms widths are a little over 2 inches—seems like a small range but it makes a big difference. Standard condom lengths are typically between 7.25 and 7.8 inches, snug condoms are between 7 and 7.8 inches, and larger condoms are between 7.25 and 8.1 inches. So condoms don’t vary too much at all in length. This makes sense because only a very tiny percentage of men are longer than 8 inches. Condoms don’t need to be much shorter because if it’s a little too long then it’s just not going to roll down all the way. Too short would be an issue since it would break more easily and wouldn’t leave extra room for ejaculate.
Girth is what matters.
With condom size, that is. This is because girth is what affects the tightness or looseness. According to condom-size.org, if his penis girth (AKA circumference) is less than 4.7 inches, a snugger fit condom might work best. Standard size condoms will fit penises between 4.7 and 5.1 inches in circumference, and large size condoms should fit penises larger than 5.1 inches in circumference.
Width is different from girth when comparing condom sizes.
In comparison charts like this one from condom-size.org, or in this one from healthline.com, condom width is shown. This is the width across when the condom is rolled out and lying flat and is not the same as circumference. To find the penis width from the circumference, divide by 3.14 and then compare to condom widths. According to condom-size.org, the condom width should be about 80-90% of penis width, otherwise, it may be too tight or too loose.
There are many online resources to help you choose one.
There are many different condoms to choose from and it can be overwhelming. There are lots of standard size condoms, others that are snugger fit for smaller penises and some that are larger for bigger penises. There are also numerous texture options, as well as various lubricants on the condoms. Thankfully, there are very helpful websites like condom-size.org dedicated to helping you find the right one. The site even has a condom size calculator. If you want even more options, onecondoms.com has 60 different sizes for the ideal fit.
Not all condoms are the same with naming, so don’t go by the label.
What’s “regular” size for one condom brand may be large for another or vice versa. If you’re having trouble finding a good size, you may need to take a look at a condom measurement chart. It may take some trial and error, but finding the perfect fit is worth it for optimal safety and pleasure. No one wants to worry about that.
Condom material affects proper comfort as well.
There are different condom materials besides the standard latex. For example, lambskin condoms are an alternative, but these don’t protect against STDs like HIV, so beware. Other alternatives are polyurethane (a type of plastic) or polyisoprene (a natural rubber) condoms. Polyurethane condoms are thinner and offer more sensitivity because of this but are more prone to breakage. Polyisoprene condoms are a little thicker than polyurethane ones—they’re more stretchy and less prone to breakage. Trying these different materials can make for a better fit in addition to the condom’s dimensions.
Don’t be afraid to search for the right one.
Measuring the penis and using charts to help can be a good starting point, but nothing beats experimentation. If you’re the guy and are feeling like the condoms you’re using aren’t fitting right, then change it up and try some others. If you’re the girl and are hesitant to talk to your partner, don’t be afraid to start the conversation. It can be fun to try a bunch of different types until you find the perfect one.
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Visit Say It With A Condom to create your own custom condom foil
Summer love is in the air, but sadly, for some men it may not be as romantic as they had hoped. Erectile Dysfunction (ED) is an issue that men of various ages may experience. It occurs all over the world and is experienced by one in four men under the age of forty. ED can have quite an impact on your confidence and may potentially cause problems in your relationship. With that being said, there are several reasons why ED occurs and many ways to treat it.
First, take a look at what you are bringing into your body. Cigarettes can lower the amount of air you are able to breathe in, thus lowering your stamina and endurance. When you smoke, toxins enter your bloodstream and affect your cardiovascular system by lowering blood flow. Reduced blood flow can make it more difficult to acquire and maintain an erection, thus leading to erectile dysfunction. Conversely, 72% of men with alcohol dependence report premature ejaculation, low sexual desire, and erectile dysfunction. Those who are not dependent on liquor may also experience reduced sexual performance, even when drinking only moderately.
Many people experience stress. Whether it’s related to family, work, or finance, these are common worries that can truly have an impact on your health. When you are lacking in sleep and your energy levels are low, it can begin to negatively impact your sex drive.
There has been a great amount of research on ED and there are a number of ways to take care of this. One of the first things you can do is treat your stress. Whether it is talking to a friend or someone close with you, outwardly expressing your experience may be all that you need. Try getting some exercise, falling asleep an hour earlier, or picking up a new hobby.
For those who are more into technology, Calm is an app that uses short meditations to clear your head, lower your blood pressure and improve your overall feeling. Meditating has multiple benefits and although it may be difficult at first, it can truly improve your mental and physical state. This is a crucial step in preventing and eliminating erectile dysfunction.
Changing up your diet is a sure way to have an impact on your body. According to Everyday Health, beets and kale are two foods loaded with nitrates. Nitrates are vasodilators, which help to open up blood vessels and promote blood flow in the body. They are also healthy foods to enjoy when trying to burn fat.
While these natural ways to treat erectile dysfunction, there are also medications that will address the problem. 60% of men avoid going to the doctors even if they have a serious condition or an embarrassing situation. hims allows you to connect with doctors online, so there is no waiting in the doctor’s office or awkward in person conversations. They can prescribe Sildenadil and discreetly ship it to your house; helping to relax blood vessels, which sends blood to the parts of the body that matter most.
With your newfound confidence and performance, it is important to practice safe sex. Condoms are 98% effective in preventing pregnancy and STD’s if worn properly. They are inexpensive, reliable, and necessary if you want to maintain your sexual health. ED treatment and condoms go hand in hand. If you want to have sex, make sure that it is safe.
Hims is a men’s wellness company that focuses on the little things that have a big impact on the man’s body. They want everyone to look and feel their best.
Overcoming Fear of Condom-Associated Erectile Dysfunction
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Consistent use of condoms help prevent sexually transmitted diseases (STD) and unwanted pregnancies. But for some men, the fear that condoms may cause erectile dysfunction (ED) gets in the way of regular use.
Is condom-associated ED a possibility? Yes, but are condoms a cause of chronic ED? Not at all.
There are many possible physical and psychological causes for ED. For example, ED may be an early warning sign of heart disease or diabetes. It may also be a result of medications taken to treat other conditions such as high blood pressure. For some men, depression, stress and/or problems within a relationship may be factors. There is often more them one cause of ED.
That said, condom-related erection problems may occur in some men, and as a result, these men may develop a fear of using condoms in the future. Some men may get distracted and lose their arousal when they stop sexual activity to put a condom on, resulting in the inability to keep an erection. One study suggests that men who experience condom-associated erectile problems may just need more time or more intense stimulation to become aroused.
Regardless of what’s driving it, condom-induced erectile dysfunction is not a long-term problem, and it’s not a good reason to forgo condoms. Condoms are highly effective at preventing infection by HIV, the virus that causes AIDS, as well as other STDs such as chlamydia, gonorrhea, and trichomoniasis.
Sexual health experts recommend trying the following four tips to help overcome the fear of condom-associated ED.
1. Talk to your doctor.
Condoms don’t cause ED. If you are having problems achieving and maintaining an erection sufficient for sexual intercourse, discuss it with your doctor. There may be other things going on that need to be evaluated. Successfully treating ED starts with identifying the true causes.
2. Size matters.
If a condom is too large and falls off during intercourse, it can reverse an erection. Learning how and when to properly put on a condom can help prevent discomfort, distraction and other problems that could undo an erection. Sample different types, textures and sizes to see what works best for you and your partner.
3. Consider lubrication.
Try adding lubricant to the inside of the condom. This may make sex feel more pleasurable. However, some suggest not applying lubricant so as to maintain contact between the condom and penis in order to prevent slipping. Find out what works for you. You can also apply additional lubricant to the outside of the condom along the penis. Warming sensation lubricants are also available and may help maintain an erection.
4. Don’t stop.
Continue to engage in foreplay and ask your partner to put the condom on for you. This will help eliminate the distraction cited by some men.
Don’t sacrifice safe sex for great sex–they are not mutually exclusive. Safe sex can and should be great sex.
An insertive condom
The nitrile FC2 (the “female condom”) is the only internal condom available for sale in the US. If your situation requires a condom, and the partner with a penis hates the sensation of all condoms, period, the FC2 is an option. Inserted in advance of intercourse, it works with any size of penis as well as when the penis is only semierect, so there is no risk of it falling out or leaking if the insertive partner loses their erection, or if the partner stays in after finishing.
Our testers reported that using this condom involves a bit of a learning curve: “Insertion takes some time to get used to, but once you figure out how to insert the condom, they’re amazing. I use a dildo to aid in insertion,” said one tester. The testers either found it very pleasurable (“The condom felt great, so much so my partner had to keep checking to make sure it was still there”) or couldn’t get used to the feeling. “The experience of having plastic inside me as opposed to covering the body part entering me really made me uncomfortable,” one tester said. “My partner felt that the condom felt ‘fake’ and ‘not like human flesh’ … it decreased his arousal,” another reported.
Slim-fit latex condoms
The Caution Wear Iron Grip was our second-favorite slim-fit condom after the Okamoto Zero Zero Four 004. The Iron Grip is the slimmest condom we’ve tested, and testers reported that this model felt thinner and had relatively little odor compared with the other slim-fit condoms they tested. This condom is so slim, it felt too tight for some of our testers, even those with slimmer penises: “The condom’s fit was so tight it actually constricted penile blood flow. It was difficult to take off. Had I used this with a partner, I would have been worried about tearing the material or spilling the contents while taking it off,” said one tester. It’s more than an inch shorter than our slim-fit pick, so people with longer, slimmer penises may find the Okamoto 004 more comfortable.
Our testers liked the Atlas True Fit, saying it “transferred sensation well and fit well, just enough pressure around the base to know it was there but almost ‘invisible’ on the shaft,” but they preferred the thinner Okamoto 004 overall.
Testers said that the LifeStyles Snugger Fit had too much lubrication, leaving a greasy feeling, as well as a strong latex taste and smell. It was also somewhat thicker than other models we tested.
The Glyde Slimfit was the least popular of the slim-fit condoms we tested. One tester complained: “Way too small, and the tip was way too big. We didn’t finish using it because I was afraid it would slip off.” According to another, it “slid off during masturbation.” While this condom is a vegan option, it was one of the worst-smelling models we tested.
Slim- to average-fit latex condoms
Our testers loved the Okamoto Crown’s sheer pink latex and high-quality lube, but its thinner brandmate, the Okamoto 004, won out by a smidgen. One tester reported: “pplication is easy, packaging is easy to open, and it fits well. The material is thin enough to be very pleasurable.”
In our technical tests, we experienced some issues with the Kimono MicroThin rolling and bunching up during application.
The Beyond Seven worked great for some average-size testers but felt too tight for others. People disliked this condom’s texture, saying that it “definitely had a non-natural ‘latex-y’ feeling to it” and “felt rubbery during sex.”
Average-fit latex condoms
The One Vanish is our second-favorite average-fit condom, after the LifeStyles Skyn. This condom received the highest overall satisfaction score (4.1 out of five) among all of the average-size natural-latex condoms we tested. It is a great condom, and though testers didn’t love it as consistently as they did our pick, they remarked that it “left no smell or taste on my partner” and “work the most consistently.” One Condoms claims that the Vanish is made from “softer” latex, and our testers reported excellent sensation: “At several points I thought it had fallen off because the sensitivity was so good on this one!” one noted. On the other hand, one unimpressed tester complained that—like other One brand condoms—it was “very hard to open.” This tester added that it “left a really bad taste, much too thick, my partner could not feel through it”—a testament to how truly subjective the experience of using condoms can be.
Sustain brand’s primary selling point is that the latex is “fair trade” and “sustainably produced.” Nothing about the Sustain Ultra Thin made it stand out to our testers, who said that it was “definitely thin but pretty average otherwise.” Testers also had some minor issues with opening the package and with application.
The Billy Boy Extra Thin was very popular with our testers. “This one was the best so far,” said one. Other comments: “Worked well for all of my partners” and “Comfortable … and felt very natural.” The primary complaint was about this condom’s smell, which people described as “strong” and “kind of plasticky.”
The One Pleasure Plus features a ribbed pouch toward the head that is supposed to enhance sensation. It received rave reviews from testers: “We both really liked the shape with the pouch. It felt really good for both of us,” said one. “The sensations were great,” noted another. “Super pleased with this condom and the wearer loved that it stayed in place,” said a third. We also found that testers with foreskins really liked that this model wasn’t so snug around the head, with one reporting that it “definitely had a better fit overall.” The main drawbacks: The latex is a bit thicker than on other models, and the circular package can be difficult to open.
Sir Richard’s Ultra Thin didn’t stand out, though one tester “loved it” while another complained that it “rolled a smidge.”
While the L Condoms Ultra Thin can only be ordered online, L brand offers some neat perks, including a free trial package and one-hour delivery in select markets (making it a viable alternative to drugstore brands). One tester reported that this condom “fit perfectly,” but others were underwhelmed, describing it as a “run of the mill, general latex condom experience” and having a “very strong unpleasant smell.”
Testers had mixed opinions on the LifeStyles Thyn, with comments ranging from “perfect, it felt really nice” to “ felt really thick, not pleasurable.”
The vegan Glyde Ultra was one of the least popular of our average-size options. Testers reported that it was “too tight and broke on two occasions,” caused an “itchy, burning sensation,” and “just smelled bad.”
Testers weren’t crazy about the Durex Extra Sensitive even though it had better consumer reviews than many other drugstore options. They reported that it “dulled sensation,” was difficult to put on (it stuck to itself and didn’t roll down well), and had lubricant that “felt tacky.”
An average- to generous-fit latex condom
Although Kimono MicroThin Large condoms are marketed as generous-size, our testers found them to be too snug and complained that they had a tendency to wrinkle and roll up during application. “I would use these condoms for normal-sized penises that are on the larger side, but not for a truly bigger-sized penis,” one tester said.
Generous-fit latex condoms
One The Legend was our testers’ second-favorite generous-fit condom. Made of natural latex, The Legend is very generously sized: We measured its unstretched length at 9 inches as opposed to our pick’s 8¼ inches, though both models feature a similar width of approximately 2¼ inches. Natural latex offers more stretch and give than polyisoprene, which means One’s model may be more comfortable for penises that are thicker as well as longer. Our testers gave this model 4.25 out of five points for satisfaction (a mere 0.01 behind the LifeStyles Skyn Large’s score), reporting that it was easy to put on and pleasurable to wear, with a nice shape and texture. However, like with other One brand condoms, testers found the packaging attractive but frustrating to use. One tester complained about The Legend’s rubbery smell and said that the condom didn’t offer adequate lubricant for it to be comfortable.
The Trojan Magnum XL—with a 2.2-inch shaft width, a 2.56-inch head width, and an 8.07-inch length—is perhaps the largest condom you’ll find at a drugstore. Testers found it easy to put on and liked the fit and shape but thought it had an unpleasant smell.
The classic drugstore “larger condom,” Trojan’s Magnum BareSkin also works well for men on the larger size of average who prefer a roomier fit. The BareSkin features thinner latex than the XL, and our testers liked it apart from the unpleasant plastic smell.
Testers reported an unpleasant smell, “too much lubricant,” and some challenges with the Glyde Maxi rolling during application. One tester said that he “did not like the shape of the condom at the head of the penis, it was tight and uncomfortable.”
Testers noted that Sir Richard’s Extra Large had an unpleasant smell but was easy to put on.
Made of polyisoprene, the Durex Avanti Bare condom is quite similar to the LifeStyles Skyn, our average-fit pick. Our testers reported that it offered great sensitivity, despite an unpleasant smell. Note that this version is quite different from the original Avanti condom, which Durex made from polyurethane, not polyisoprene.
The Unique Pull is best for people with thicker penises, as it is not very elastic and it stays put by clinging to the penis like plastic wrap; it also has a texture that is much thinner and more plasticky than latex. Unlike with traditional latex condoms, its application involves pull tabs, and it comes in a pack of three in a nifty credit-card–shaped case. “I was dubious about the material (it felt like Saran Wrap) but it was very easy to put on compared to a regular condom once it was out of the package,” noted one tester. “The material felt good during sex but slippage was a concern.” Said another tester: “My partner complained that when he rolled it on, it stretched strangely … He also thought the band was too tight. We tried another one due to the bagging issue … went on easier with practice though it broke part of the way through sex.”
The Trojan Supra is currently the only polyurethane condom available in the US. While the material is very thin and capable of transmitting heat and sensation well, it is not very elastic, and our testers sometimes found this condom to be a bit snug and difficult to take on and off.
We chose to limit ourselves to the top-rated options among the hundreds of available condoms. Here are some of the others we considered, and why we didn’t include them in testing:
Impulse Bare Pleasure
Although this model is a Condom Depot “best condom” winner, some people find the ribbed and studded texture irritating.
Trustex Extra Large
While this condom made Condom Depot’s best-of list and is reported to be wider as well as longer, some reviewers complain that it feels thick and breaks easily.
LifeStyles Ultra Sensitive
One of our experts recommended this budget condom to us, but we decided to go with the LifeStyles Thyn instead.
Durex Performax and Performax Intense
These condoms are textured and coated with a numbing lube that is supposed to help prevent premature ejaculation. Some reviewers report that the numbing effect is too intense, or that the ribs irritate the receptive partner.
Trojan Ultra Thin
This model was a Consumer Reports pick in 2010, but reviewers say that it’s overrated and sometimes prone to breaking, and that it doesn’t actually feel thinner.
This condom is expensive and there’s concern over the effectiveness of lambskin condoms in preventing STIs. Couples who use condoms only for contraception often swear by it, despite its reportedly weird smell.
Our experts recommend this kind of condom for covering sex toys and for oral sex, but you have better options for vaginal and anal intercourse.
LifeStyles Extra Strength
Because this model is extremely durable, our experts recommend it for anal sex, but it’s thicker than other models and may offer less sensation.
Some people prefer this budget-priced generous-size condom over the Trojan Magnum. We did not test it, as other models had better reviews overall.