Guide To Condoms and Lubricants

Condoms are available in two major categories - those that are put on an erect penis as well as those inserted into a vagina. They act as a barrier sheath used during sexual intercourse to cut the probability of pregnancy and spread of sexually transmitted diseases such as HIV/AIDS. They are also used in conjunction with anal sex toys along with a lubricant.

While male condoms are the most common and widely available, female condoms are not. The latter looks like a flexible tube with a closed end inserted into the vagina as well as an open end fitted around the entrance of the vagina.

There are five types of condoms out there and a whole slew of different varieties of latex condom available on the market. Consider the following varieties;

Male Novelty Condoms

These are the specialty condoms often found in sex shops, adult bookshops as well as in condom machines inside public wash rooms. They are not very effective when it comes to protection against pregnancy or STDs. Just as their name suggests they are only meant for fun - which means for use with sex toys. Male novelty condoms are always labelled ''For Novelty Use Only'' so buyers should often check the label so as not to end up with them when shopping for something to protect against STDs or pregnancy.

Male Sheepskin/Natural Condoms

These varieties are relatively expensive and only suitable for protection against pregnancy not against STDs. Unfortunately most users are often not aware of this and prefer them for their more natural sensation not knowing that they are ineffective when it comes to protection against STDs such as HIV/AIDS.

Male Latex Condoms

Male latex condoms are by far the most common types out there. They are relatively cheaper than male natural condoms although their prices vary from brand to brand. If used properly they can protect against STDs and pregnancy. However they have a few minor drawbacks for instance their bad taste for oral sex and the fact that they can only be used with water based lubricants. N/B: Never use oil based lubricants with male latex condoms as they can easily break. These condoms are available online in several varieties for instance there are those that are ribbed, extra sensitive, non-lubricated, lubricated and so on.

Male Plastic/Polyurethane Condoms

Polyurethane condoms which sell under the brand name ''Avanti'' are the best alternative to Latex condoms. The major drawbacks to latex condoms are their unpleasant taste, the limitation to use them only with water based lubricants and the side effects of using latex. Polyurethane condoms are the perfect choice for individuals who are allergic to latex and unpleasant smells. They are suitable for both oral and penetrative sex and can be used with any type of lubricant be it an oil or water-based lubricant. Although there is not sufficient information about their level of protection male plastic condoms are believed to give adequate protection against pregnancy and STDs.

Female Plastic/Polyurethane Condoms

Sold under the brand name ''Reality'', these condoms are only suitable for vaginal penetration. They are made of plastic hence can be used with any type of lubricant although they do come with their own lubricant. Female plastic condoms have more drawbacks than other types of condoms for instance they have a high rate of failure as they are often hard to insert into the vagina. Apart from that female condoms produce a lot of unpleasant noises during sexual intercourse.

Avanti is the highest and best selling brand of male condoms and can be purchased from local adult bookstores and other shops selling sex toys.

Personal Lubricants

A personal lubricant on the other hand is either a biological or man-made fluid designed to minimize friction and pain during sexual intercourse. They minimize friction between the penis and the vagina or anus. Sex lubricants can also be applied to sex toys to ease penetration. Just like condoms, personal lubricants come in various types.

Water-Based Personal Lubricants

These lubricants are water-soluble and the most commonly used personal lubricants. They have various agents added for even moisture retention, dispersal as well as resistance to contamination. The ingredients used in these lubricants are aloe vera, water, guar gum, locust bean gum, flax extract, phenoxyethanol, citric acid, potassium sorbate as well as xanthan gum.

Oil -Based Personal Lubricants

These personal lubricants can increase the chances of slipping and breakage of latex condoms as they often cause loss of elasticity. They contain ingredients such as sweet almond oil, sheer butter, sunflower seed oil, cocoa seed oil as well as Vitamin E.

We hope this guide has been informative for you it the different types and uses of condoms and lubricants that are available. This will enable you to go for the best product depending on your intended purpose as all of them are designed for different uses.