Even though it may be your first-time buying condoms, we all know condoms are a form of birth control for pregnancy protection. As well as protection against sexually transmitted infections (STIs). That’s likely why you’re looking to buy condoms in the first place. However, if this is your first time buying, you’re likely asking, “How do I choose the right condom?”
I asked myself this same question on my first time. I grew up in a small town, so I was timid about it because not only was the pharmacist a woman, but she was also the mother of a friend of my sisters. So, the last thing I wanted was to arm my younger sister with fuel for gossip!
With the many options available, where do you start? This guide will help you navigate your first-time buying condoms and provide some helpful tips to get you started.
Common Types of Condoms
There are many styles and brands of condoms available today, each with unique features. Below are the most common types of condoms you can buy.
Latex condoms are the most common type available. They are made from some form of latex rubber and are compatible with water-based and silicone-based lubricants.
Non-latex condoms are an excellent alternative for anyone allergic to latex. They are often made from polyisoprene, polyurethane, or nitrile and offer the same protection as latex condoms.
Flavored condoms provide excellent protection during oral sex but also enhance all forms of sexual pleasure. You’ll find a variety of flavors available so you’re sure to find you favorite!
Are You Too Shy to Buy Condoms
Many first-time condom buyers feel embarrassed when they buy condoms in person due to the stigma around sex and contraception.
The shyness factor is a problem for many folks, especially those without access to online shopping or mail-order buying options.
However, even if it’s just you and the cashier, the feeling of awkwardness is still there.
Additionally, buying condoms from a local retailer means you have limited choices since local stores typically only carry a few brands and types.
Why Buying Condoms Online is Your Best Option
Buying condoms online offers several advantages over buying them from your local store.
It’s convenient since you can purchase condoms without leaving the comfort of your own home. Plus, who doesn’t like packages delivered right to their door. Also, a wider range of sizes, types, and brands is often available online than in a physical retail store.
Additionally, online prices are often cheaper than local stores, mainly because most folks buy condoms online in greater volume due to the shyness factor we mentioned earlier.
Finally, if you’re worried about privacy or embarrassment when purchasing condoms, then buying them online could be the ideal solution since all orders are shipped discreetly in plain packaging.
So why not take advantage of these benefits and consider ordering your condoms online today?
Always Have a Condom on Hand
Buying condoms ahead of time is the best way to always have some on hand when the need or mood hits you. In addition, having a few condoms in your wallet or car glove compartment will help you feel confident and prepared for any situation. (Don’t expose them to heat for too long, which can degrade their durability).
Having a condom on hand means you won’t get caught off guard should an unexpected opportunity arise.
Condoms are one of the most common forms of contraception, and they come in many varieties, so perhaps consider a Condom Variety Pack. Buying a variety sampler pack lets you see which type works best for you.
Overall, buying condoms ahead of time is a smart move that can help you stay safe and prevent you from being tempted to go bare that one time!
So be proactive and have some condoms handy at all times to play it safe!
What Size Condoms Should I Choose
Choosing the right size condom is essential for a comfortable and secure fit. If a condom fits too tightly or loosely, this will increase the risk of the condom breaking or slipping off during sex with your partner.
Here’s how to measure for the correct size condom:
- Length: Measure the length of the penis from the base to the tip. This measurement determines the length of the condom required.
- Width: Measure the width of the penis at the widest point. This measurement determines the width of the condom required.
- Girth (Circumference): Measure the girth of the penis at the base. This measurement determines the condom’s overall size required.
Choosing a Condom Safe Lube
Lubrication is essential for a comfortable and pleasurable partner experience. While some condoms come pre-lubricated, you can always add additional lubrication.
Consider these tips when choosing lubrication:
- Water-Based Lubrication: Water-based lube is the most common type used with condoms. It is safe to use with all condoms and does not damage latex.
- Silicone Lubrication: Silicone lube lasts longer than water-based lube and is safe for use with latex and non-latex condoms. However, some brands have a sticky feeling some may not like.
- Oil-Based Lubrication: Oil-based lube, such as Baby Oil or Vaseline, should never be used with latex condoms. Oil breaks down the latex and increases the risk of a condom breaking or tearing.
How to Use a Condom
Using a condom correctly prevents sexually transmitted infections (STIs)and unwanted pregnancy. Here are the steps to safely use condoms.
- Check the Expiration Date: Before using a condom, check the expiration date. Expired condoms can break or tear, reducing their effectiveness.
- Open the Package Carefully: Open the condom package carefully. Please do not use your teeth or sharp objects, as they can damage the condom.
- Check for Damage: Check the condom for signs of damage, such as tears or holes. If it’s damaged, don’t use it.
- Roll the Condom on Correctly: Place the condom on the tip of the erect penis and roll it down to the base. Verify that no air is trapped in the condom, as this can cause it to break.
- Lubricate if Necessary: If additional lubrication is required, apply a small amount of water-based or silicone-based lubrication to the outside of the condom.
- Use Correctly During Sex: During sex, a condom should always stay in place. If the condom slips or breaks, replace it right away!
There’s a lot to consider for your first-time buying condoms would need to consider. If a friend has recommended a brand or style, this is a good place to start.
Otherwise, as we mentioned, consider a variety sampler pack and see which brand or style works best for you. You may go through several different styles and brands but what a fun journey!
Lastly, once you find your brand and style, consider buying condoms in bulk and save. Condoms have a shelf life from 3-5 years so if you’re sexually active this could be a worthwhile upfront purchase.
Frequently Asked Questions
Where can I buy condoms?
You can buy condoms from a local retailer such as a drugstore or convenience store—yet many shop online for privacy, convenience, and a wider selection.
Can I buy condoms if I’m under 18?
Yes, there are no age restrictions for purchasing condoms. If you’re shy about buying condoms in person, you can always buy them online. Although, if you happen to find a vending machine, be careful to check the condom expiration date.
What type of condoms should I buy for the first time?
While you can try any brand or style, you may want to consider a variety sampler pack. These packs offer different types and brands, such as textures, colors, and flavors.
How do I know what size condom to buy?
Condoms typically come in small, medium, or large sizes. If you’re unsure of your size, following the manufacturer’s size guidelines is a good place to start.