Condom recommendations?
September 7, 2004 7:42 PM   Subscribe

Condom recommendations?
posted by swift to Human Relations (21 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite

This really depends on your personal biology.
posted by falconred at 7:48 PM on September 7, 2004

I would ask your partner if they have any preferences, but free is always good.
posted by jb at 7:53 PM on September 7, 2004

I read an article recently about a customizable prophylactic called "They-Fit" condoms. You basically measure your penis with their downloadable kit, and send them the measurements, which they use to craft you a “second skin” condom. The article tester/author admitted that it made a noticeable difference, as the company touts 55 different sizes.

They don’t have a website yet (too new?), so you need to go through
to order and download the kit.
posted by naxosaxur at 8:07 PM on September 7, 2004

What criteria? Durability? Non-raincoat-shower-ness? Fit? Flavor?
posted by majick at 8:17 PM on September 7, 2004

Flavoured is definitely good.
posted by orange swan at 8:21 PM on September 7, 2004

I'm a big fan of plastic condoms. They came out 8-10 years ago boasting thin as possible, non-flexible, quick to body temp features. The jury is out on whether they're good enough to block tiny HIV, but they work fine for basic birth control.

They're weird at first, they're kinda loose because they don't stretch, and lubed so you kind of move inside of them a bit. It sounds weird, but it's a much better feeling than latex. To me, latex is tight, confining, and dulls the feeling considerably compared to plastic.

Durex Avanti's are the only ones I used. They're pretty expensive, roughly about 10-15 bucks for a dozen and no supermarkets carry them out west and only certain drug stores have them, but they're easily the best things I've found.
posted by mathowie at 8:23 PM on September 7, 2004

Use lots, use often.
posted by billsaysthis at 8:33 PM on September 7, 2004

Flavoured is a little strange when you're not expecting it.

"What's that smell?"
"No, the fruity smell."
"Artificial mango."
posted by amandaudoff at 8:40 PM on September 7, 2004

If you're looking for a virus barrier, then you should go latex/vinyl/plastic, since those are basically impermeable to anything.

If you're looking for basic contraception, though, then you should look into lambskin--it's a little strange, at first, but much more comfortable and realistic feeling, to both partners, I've found. Much better sensation than all but the thinnest of latex--and then you're getting into the risk of failure. (Only big caveat with lambskin is that while they're apparently fine as an STD barrier, if that's an issue, they're not as good an HIV barrier as the others.)
posted by LairBob at 9:33 PM on September 7, 2004

Are there condom brands that are used more by gay men rather than straight? I've often wondered if drug store cashiers make certain assumptions about customers based on the brand they grab off the rack or sheepishly (or would that be lambishly, considering the subject?) ask the cashier to fetch for them.

(My recommendation would be to make sure you don't put it on inside out and risk numbing your partner's, er, parts with Lidocaine or another anesthetic, but that's because that issue was one of the running gags in the episode of Curb Your Enthusiasm that I watched tonight.)
posted by emelenjr at 10:08 PM on September 7, 2004

Big, thin, lubed
posted by caddis at 10:53 PM on September 7, 2004

I have heard a lot about lambskin and I have always wanted to try it.
posted by Keyser Soze at 10:59 PM on September 7, 2004

Do they still make Ramses? Those were the BEST. Totally un-condom.
posted by scarabic at 11:28 PM on September 7, 2004

I've broken several Durex condoms. Details do not follow, but I can not stess strongly enough how badly Durex condoms suck. Here is the obligatory link to Condomania, the most comprehensive condom store in the world.

IMO lambskin are definitely the best sensation-wise, but they don't stop viral STDs (e.g. AIDS), and if all you are worried about preventing are pregnancies, there are much better contraception options than condoms.

Also, is it even possible to put on a condom inside out? I mean, wouldn't that require completely unrolling it, giving it the old tube-sock flip, and then somehow sliding it on?
posted by ChasFile at 12:11 AM on September 8, 2004

Response by poster: In my early condom days I managed to unroll a condom on inside out.

I'm looking for a basic, contraceptive, everyday (wishful thinking, I know) use condom - nothing flavored, smelly, or glow in the dark. Something a little higher quality than Trojans or Lifestyles in being less-raincoaty and more partner-pleasing.

I've googled plenty of reviews, but they are usually associated with condom stores or men's magazines, so I don't trust them entirely. For instance, after some research, I recently bought Inspirals (America's #1 Rated Condom!) and my partner didn't really notice a difference.

So I'm curious what Metafilter users trust/use/enjoy in a condom.

(I'll try sheepskin.)
posted by swift at 3:56 AM on September 8, 2004

Response by poster: Also, I can never seem to find Avantis, but I'll keep an eye out.
posted by swift at 3:58 AM on September 8, 2004

well, trojans worked for me (lubed) until my wife went on the pill. we never went any higher-end than that. but i was never too thrilled with 'em; trojans are better than not having sex, sure, but if there's something out there that is better, for those times when we can't trust the little pill (ie, when taking antibiotics, etc.) i'd sure love to hear about it.

'course the trust issue is big with her too. we never had a problem with trojans, so it would likely be hard to get her to trust something different. and i don't think she'd be thrilled with the natural ones.
posted by caution live frogs at 6:16 AM on September 8, 2004

trojan magnums are the old standby for me. They're not colored or flavored, just a little lube.
we've been trying the kind that have the nerve deadener on the inside. Not so great. They work, but you have to put them on way early to give time for it to work. And that sometimes doesn't happen.
posted by Miles Long at 8:37 AM on September 8, 2004

Before I got my tubes tied, I preferred it when my husband used Avantis. They don't have that weird "condom" smell that the latex rubbers do, they warmed very quickly to body temperature, and they had a nice texture that enhanced my sensation. The husband said he preferred the thinness and the heat conductivity with those versus latex condoms, so that's a two thumbs up from us for Avanti.
posted by headspace at 8:48 AM on September 8, 2004

I believe that Trojan and other companies also make polyurethane condoms (like Avantis). You should be able to find at least one kind at your local drug store, as these are what people allergic to latex have to use. Never tried any myself, but I did once try ultra-thin Trojans or something like that, which didn't really feel any better than normal Trojans, but made me feel way less confident that I was protected. Went back to the normal ones after.
posted by rorycberger at 11:43 AM on September 8, 2004

For straight, monogamous couples who are only looking for birth control and don't always trust/ forget to take a pill, a diaphram is a very good way to go. Has to be fitted by a doctor, but hassle free clinics will also do this, it's quick to put in (same time as a condom, though usually done earlier) and with spermicidal jelly works well. Needless to say, neither partner feels it.
posted by jb at 6:35 PM on September 9, 2004

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