They’re obnoxiously expensive. They’re awkward as hell. They’re so intimidating to put in that most people give up before they even try. They were someone’s misguided attempt to create female liberation on the safer sex front by providing women with a “female-controlled” method of sexually transmitted infection (STI) protection (sorry, folks, it didn’t really work out that way; female condoms definitely require a guy’s cooperation). They’re way too thick, and they occasionally make squeaky sounds when you’re fucking with them. I avoided them for years because they were so damned awkward-looking, and I only used them for the first time because I couldn’t think what else to do. I can’t for the life of me imagine successfully having sex in the dark with one (but that’s not really my thing, so whatever).
They’re incredibly poorly marketed. They’re supposed to keep women in control of safer sex, but they require total cooperation from men in order to work effectively; the name “female condom” understandably pisses off genderqueer folks, who usually colloquially refer to them as “internal condoms” instead; and the damned things work better for anal than vaginal sex and should be selling like wildfire to gay men… who, of course, don’t realize that they could even be using them, because why would a gay guy use a “female condom”? Worst of all, they’re terrifying to try to figure out how to use (especially when the risks are high), and the instructions on the package are no help at all. In fact, the instructions on the packaging are so crappy that I created a couple of internet videos to help people figure out how to use them.
And yet, after only a single personal use, I found myself online shopping for an affordable 100-pack of female condoms (your best bets are usually amazon.com vendors or condomdepot.com with a discount code). That’s partly because my husband’s girlfriend/my play partner is allergic to latex, and the female condoms sold in the U.S. are all non-latex. But it’s also partly for me. Because I’ve discovered that despite their myriad disadvantages, female condoms can be extremely handy. And being able to use female condoms or male condoms depending on the sexual situation turns out to be quite advantageous.
In case you’re wondering what advantages could possibly outweigh all those negatives above, I figured I’d write out a list of their advantages.
- They’re sometimes great for guys whose dicks are annoyed by male condoms. Guys with large foreskins and guys who feel like male condoms are cutting off the circulation to their dicks often find female condoms more pleasant.
- They’re not made of latex, so they can be great if either partner has a latex allergy.
You can put them in long before you have sex. No need to stop the sexy and make the condom happen. You can grind all up and down your partner before you ever fuck, and voila! There is protection. I’ve (consensually) woken up a partner in the middle of the night, put in a female condom the bathroom, then sat on my partner’s hard cock in his sleep. You can pull off a trick like that with a male condom, but it’s a helluva lot sexier to wake someone up by sliding your (protected) pussy down his cock than by putting a condom on him… unless you do it with your mouth.
You can (and in my opinion, usually should) get your partner to put it in for you. Ignore those dumb instructions telling you the woman should put it in herself. Moreover, unlike putting a condom on with your mouth, putting a female condom in with a finger is something that pretty much anyone can do. And thus the safer sex is naturally integrated with foreplay.
A guy can keep losing his erection, and your female condom doesn’t care. Sucking a guy’s cock or giving him a handjob to get him hard again is much easier when there’s no latex in the way.
In general, it’s easy to pop back and forth between fucking and oral sex. Female condoms don’t really taste much at all (I can’t taste them anyway), so both people’s genitals will just taste like whatever lube you used, not latex. This also means that it’s a cinch for a guy to pull out and cum in the girl’s mouth, on her chest, or whatever.
They’re extremely useful for multi-person sex. If two women want to fuck one guy, both the girls can use female condoms and he can pop back and forth between them with ease. And they turn out to be pretty fucking fantastic for coitalingus–which is where a guy fucks a girl’s pussy and someone else goes down on the pair of them simultaneously. Again, there’s no taste of latex, his dick is mostly exposed, and her clit is easily exposed.
They’re great for giving girls hand-jobs, especially if you’re trying to give multiple girls hand-jobs. You don’t have to keep changing gloves, because the girls pretty much already have gloves in their pussies! So handy! (Pun pun)
Unless you mess them up (which admittedly a lot of people do), they’re better disease protection than male condoms, because they’re somewhat better at protecting against skin-transmitted STI’s like herpes.
They are the only thing I’ll use for protected anal sex. Whereas male condoms have a terrible habit of tearing in tight poorly lubricated asses, female condoms are much less likely to break (although you do have to worry about them bunching up). On top of that, you don’t really have to worry about the santorum experience so much until you’re already done with the sex and have to pull the condom all the way out. It makes the whole anal sex experience waaaay cleaner, and it’s safer to boot.
They’re definitely not perfect. I’ve heard guys complain that they’re like fucking a plastic bag and they look weird. But they’ve got their uses.
Two cheers for female condoms 😉