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Female Condoms: All You Need To Know

The female condom gives women control and choice over their own sexual and reproductive health. – PHOTO: Rogan Ward/Reuters

In the 80s, the phrase “safe sex” became popular. The concept of safe sex was in response to the global AIDS epidemic.

However, the responsibility and prevention of sexually transmitted diseases have always been within the male gender’s purview. Male condoms, for instance, have existed for centuries. And it is cheaper and more accessible than the female condom.

The female condom gives women control and choice over their own sexual and reproductive health.

Unfortunately, few women explore this contraceptive method that provides dual protection against a range of sexually transmitted infections. The National Demographic Health Survey 2013 reported that 28.6 per cent of women in Nigeria know about female condom while less than 0.5 per cent use it.

What is the female condom?

The female condom is a thin pouch with a flexible ring disc at the closed end that can be inserted into the vagina before sex, forming a barrier to protect you from sexually transmitted infections (STIs) including HIV, and unplanned pregnancy.

The inner ring or foam disc at the closed end of the sheath is used to insert the condom inside the vagina and to hold it in place during intercourse. The rolled outer ring or poly frame at the open end of the sheath remains outside the vagina and covers part of the external genitalia.

The female condom can also be used for anal sex.


The female condom can protect both partners from a range of sexually transmitted infections (STIs).

Female condoms are effective at preventing unintended pregnancy, but male condoms are more effective. When used correctly, 5 out of every 100 women using female condoms will get pregnant in one year. This is comparable to the male condom, which has a protection rate of around 2 pregnancies per 100 women over the time span of one year when used correctly.

How to use a female condom – AVERT

Why You Should Use A Female Condom

No Interruption:

Did you know that you can insert the female condom up to eight hours before sex? This means that unlike the male condom which is put on just before sex or during foreplay, you can insert the female condom ahead of time and get down without interruption.


Unlike male condoms can’t be used with oil-based lubricants because these may cause the latex to break, female condoms can be used with any type of lubricant – whether oil, water or silicone!

No Irritation:

Most male condoms are made of latex, female condoms are made from a soft plastic material called nitrile. This is hypoallergenic, meaning female condoms won’t irritate sensitive genital skin.

Dual Pleasure

The female condom’s inner ring may stimulate the tip of the penis during vaginal sex. While the external ring can rub against the vulva and clitoris.

Some men even prefer the female condom because it doesn’t fit snugly around the penis. And moreover, one doesn’t need an erection for the female condom to stay in place.

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