5 Things Everyone Should Know About Condoms

condoms in assorted colors

No matter what you call them—rubber raincoats, love gloves, etc. — condoms come in pretty handy. Scratch that, they come in incredibly handy. What other piece of latex do you know that helps prevent disease and pregnancy while simultaneously stimulating "for her pleasure"?

The "how to" for condoms seems pretty simple, but as with all sex-related necessities, some complications may arise. Luckily for all of you who didn't get a complete rundown of "Captain Condom" in your high school health class, here are a few must-know facts about those little love gloves to keep your sexual sailing as smooth as possible.

1. Allergies? Psh. Yes, most condoms are made of latex. And yes, some unfortunately-unlucky people are allergic to latex. But such a medical sensitivity does not condemn one to a life of risky sex! Rather, polyurethane and polyisoprene condoms exist as a latex alternative. Plus, condoms made from these materials are thinner than normal, meaning they increase your sensitivity for a more pleasurable (and less allergy-ridden) experience overall.

2. Stow safely, my friends. I fondly remember a scene from Grease where Kenickie, about to do the nasty with Rizzo in the backseat of his car, pulls a condom from his wallet. As he opens it, he realizes, "It broke." The two lovebirds end up getting down anyway, but the moral of the story here is pretty clear: wallets aren't the best place to store your condoms. Just ask our friends at HowAboutWe: "Storage in a space as confining as a wallet degrades latex—and accordingly, the efficacy of a condom." The proposed solution to this ultimate conundrum? Stick it in the wallet for a short period of time, guys, but if you come home from the bar with no lady to share your bed, put the condom away and call it a night.

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3. Proper application. Putting the condom on may seem like the easiest part of the night, but plenty can go wrong in the process. One tip for ultimate success and fewer "oops" moments—make sure it's on properly! This means rolling it all the way down (we know you can get impatient, but it's a few extra seconds) and make sure to squeeze the air from the tip. Also verify that the condom is not inside out and has no holes. There, that didn't take so long! Commence sexual activity.

4. Know your lube. Plenty of condoms come already lubricated, eliminating yet another step in the prep-to-penetration process of sex. But some still like a little extra juice to ensure a long-lasting love session, and that's awesome. Just make sure your lube and condom are compatible. Here's what you should know: Oil-based lubes can weaken latex condoms, making them more prone to breakage. Yikes. 10 Reasons To Use Lube

5. The kind-of obvious. This should be a no-brainer, but unfortunately plenty of people refrain from slipping on a glove before intercourse, so it's worth a mention here. Aside from abstinence, condoms are your only way to prevent the spread of sexually transmitted infections. Not to mention, they're pretty great at preventing unwanted pregnancies, too. Whatever your claim for not using one—that it takes away your pleasure, it's too thick, etc.—try browsing some of the many different varieties available and find one that suits your needs.

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