- Easy to put on yourself
- Available in different shapes, sizes and flavours
- Suitable for unplanned sex - no preparation is needed
- Easy to carry around in your wallet or pocket
- If you're sensitive to latex, you can use polyurethane or polyisoprene condoms instead.
Condoms are the only contraceptive method that protect against sexually transmitted infections (STIs).
The male condom is a sheath or covering that is worn over the penis during sex. They are designed to stop a man's semen from coming into contact with his sexual partner. They can be used by men having sex with women or men to prevent pregnancy and protect against STIs.
Each condom can only be used once, so protection only lasts as long as the condom is intact and worn on the penis.
To prevent pregnancy the condom must stop any sperm from reaching the vagina. Small amounts of sperm are released from the penis before ejaculation, so for condoms to be effective they must be used during any contact between the penis and vagina. Putting on the condom late or removing the condom during sex will result in much higher risk of pregnancy.
Condoms are often used by people who are not in long term relationships, or who prefer not to use a long term or hormonal method of contraception. Condoms are easy to carry around and can be thrown in a bin after use. Condoms are easy to put on with a bit of practice.
Thinking about male condoms? Join the conversation.
Share your story, ask others or tag @Dr_Paula on our contraception forum ThePOW.
*for typical use (effectiveness for perfect use 98%)