What are female condoms called? They can be found under names such as internal condoms, femidomes (similar to condoms), or the popular brand name FC2.
The female condom is one of the alternative methods of contraception. Like the male, it performs a barrier function, but instead of being put on the penis, the female condom is in the woman.
Let’s see how it works, what a female condom is for, and how good it is.
What is a female condom
So what does a female condom look like? This contraceptive is a transparent elastic bag with two rings at both ends. One ring is inserted deep into the vagina, and the second remains outside, partially covering the vulva. Thus, a tunnel is formed in the woman’s vagina. These condoms are usually made of latex or polyurethane and are about 8 cm long. They cover the walls and prevent sperm and vagina from coming into contact, thus protecting against both sexually transmitted diseases and unwanted pregnancies.
A video about female condoms will help you better understand the issue.
How and why female condoms appeared
Why a female condom is needed is, in principle, understandable – like a male condom, it is used to protect against STDs and unwanted pregnancies. If for some reason you are not sure that your partner will use a condom, or you just want to control the situation, you can take care of yourself and use this remedy.
If your partner does not want to use regular condoms, there is an alternative – female condoms
Femidomas are not an invention of recent years, they were first released for sale in 1993 in the USA, but they did not gain popularity. And they came up with this method of contraception even earlier, in the eighties, to protect women in developing countries. The UN even distributed female condoms for free in third world countries, but the use of such funds never became widespread. The fact is that the first varieties (FC1), made of polyurethane, were extremely uncomfortable, and even made unpleasant sounds during sex.
In 2009, a new version appeared, FC2, for the manufacture of which synthetic rubber – nitrile was used. Also, female condoms made of silicone appeared on the shelves over time, reviews about them are much more favorable than about polyurethane varieties.
Pros and cons of the female condom
Probably, the advantages of femidom are obvious: a woman chooses the type of contraception herself, she does not need to make sure whether her partner has put on a means of protection or not, her protection is only in her hands. One of the pluses is also that lovers do not need to interrupt caresses before putting on a female condom – a woman can insert it in advance.
Disadvantages of sex with a female condom, unfortunately, a lot.
- Some women admit that they have to insert this condom for a long time and it is not very comfortable to do it. And how to insert a female condom in “marching” conditions, if passion has overtaken far from home? The process is not very aesthetic.
- Some femidoms have a specific smell. On forums in topics dedicated to female condoms, girls share their impressions of this flavor.
- Unfortunately, additional lubrication cannot be used with FC2, because in this case there is a risk that the condom will simply slip out of the vagina.
- The price of female condoms is higher than that of male ones (about 800 rubles for 3 pieces).
- Finally, buying female condoms can be difficult: the product is not popular and not available in every pharmacy.
The effectiveness of the female condom
The female condom can protect you from pregnancy and infections
Before you call pharmacies and find out where to buy a female condom, it is worth learning about its effectiveness. And here it turns out that even with ideal use, the effectiveness of femidoms is lower than conventional condoms, and is only 95%. “A little less than ideal, the efficiency will be about 79%,” said Dr. Jessica Botfield, a senior researcher at the New South Wales Family Planning Unit. However, she argues that it is important to increase the availability of such funds: this is the only way for many women to reduce not only the risk of unwanted pregnancy, but also the risk of contracting STDs.
What’s more, according to research, female condoms can be as effective as male condoms only in preventing HIV. And for the best protection against infections, it is best to combine regular condoms and femidoms, and the female varieties themselves are less effective than the male ones.
How to use the female condom
In the photo, the female condom may look intimidating, but you can handle it, you just need to practice a little. Luckily, manufacturers recommend inserting female condoms into your vagina ahead of time, so there’s no risk of your partner falling asleep while you’re exercising.
The use of a female condom is not difficult: inserting a femidom is similar to inserting a tampon. According to the manufacturers, the contraceptive inside is almost not felt.
First, study the instructions for the female condom and make sure that no one interferes with your practice. The first time will be difficult, but in the future you will be able to effortlessly deal with female condoms.
So how do you use a female condom? To put it on, a woman takes a comfortable position: sitting with her legs wide apart or squatting. Then she tears open the package, straightens the femidom and inserts it inside, pushing it all the way with her finger. Properly worn, the product lines the inside of the vagina. The outer ring remains outside, partially covering the vulva.
Removing a condom for women is also quite simple (easier than installing it): a woman simply squeezes the free end of the femidom, twisting the outer ring like an inflated balloon, and pulls it out. The sperm stays inside.
Only you can determine which method of contraception is most convenient for you – perhaps through trial and error.