Condoms are 98% effective in preventing pregnancy and help protect you from STDs when used properly. This list of do’s and don’ts will help you ensure that you’re using your condoms the right way, every single time.
These Are What You Should Always Do:
Do Carry Your Own-You never know when someone might have poked holes in one. It doesn’t happen often, but it has happened.
Do Put It On Before You Have Any Sexual Contact-Put it on your erect penis to ensure that there are no exchanges of bodily fluids that could result in pregnancy or STDs. If you haven’t been circumcised, pull your foreskin back first.
Do Lube It Up-Use a water-based lubricant, like K-Y with latex condoms. They’ll reduce friction to make sex more comfortable, and they’ll lubricate the condom to prevent breakage. However, stay away from oils and petroleum jelly. They’ll deteriorate condoms and cause them to tear or break.
Do Go Double-Dutch-Use a condom, even if your girlfriend is on the pill. No form of birth control is 100% effective, and using both will give you an extra layer of protection. Additionally, birth control pills only protect you from pregnancy, but they don’t protect you from STDs.
Do Open The Wrapper Carefully-Using your teeth or a pair of scissors can easily damage the condom. Instead, open the package gently from the side.
Do Pinch The Tip-Before you unroll it over your penis, pinch the tip to leave enough space for semen to collect. This will prevent trapped air, and keep the condom from breaking.
Do Pull Out Immediately After Sex-Make sure you hold the base of the condom when you pull out. If you don’t, it could slip off inside your partner or spill.
Do Inspect The Condom Carefully-Check the package for the expiration date, and look at the condom itself to make sure it doesn’t look discolored. If it seems like it’s dried out or it feels sticky, toss it.
And These Are The Things You Should Never Do:
Don’t Try To Recycle a Condom-Throw your used condoms away and use a fresh one each time, even if you’re just switching from one style of sex to another.
Don’t Use It If You Put It On Wrong-If you accidentally unroll it before putting it on, or put it on inside out, throw it out and put on a new one.
Don’t Toss Them In The Toilet-Instead, you should put them back in the wrapper or in a tissue and put them in the garbage. If you flush them, they could clog the toilet, which could create a potentially embarrassing situation, especially if your parents are the ones who have to pull it out.
Don’t Keep Going After It Breaks-Stop having sex immediately if the condom breaks and pull out. Then, remove the condom and put on a new one.
Don’t Think Two Condoms Are Better Than One-The condoms will create extra friction when they rub together, which will cause them both to break.
Don’t Use Animal Skin Condoms-Even if you’re allergic to latex, stay away from lambskin or any other animal skin condoms because they don’t offer any protection against STDs. If you can’t use latex, polyurethane is your best bet.
Don’t Ignore The Storage Directions on the Box-Avoid exposing your condoms to direct sunlight, high heat, or cold temperatures. Storing them in a cool, dry place will ensure the longest shelf life. If you keep one in your wallet, replace it monthly.