Thursday, April 22, 2010

Love your Latex: Condoms 101

Condom Care & Storage:


Always…

  • Always get your condoms from a trusted location, where the temperature is controlled and condoms are displayed away from windows and direct sunlight. HGLHC cares for our condoms and stores them in temperature controlled conditions away from sunlight.
  • Always store condoms at room temperature (55° - 80° F) and in a dry place. This means you should avoid leaving them in your car for too long (where it can get too hot or too cold).
  • Always check the date to make sure the condom has not expired and make sure there aren't any tears or holes in the package
  • Always wash hands before handling a condom if you've been handling oil-based products like massage oil, baby oil, some lotions, vegetable oil, petroleum jelly (Vaseline), Crisco, etc. Why? Oils can break down the latex. That's why you should use water-based lubes like we give out @ HGLHC.
  • Always throw used condoms away in the garbage wrapped in tissue.
Never…

  • Never leave condoms in direct sunlight or store them for prolonged periods at temperatures above 100° F or below freezing. Never leave condoms in your glove compartment or your wallet.
  • Never reuse a condom!
  • Never throw used condoms away in the toilet. You'll have a lot of explaining to do to your plumber.


Using a Male Condom....

The best way to prevent a condom from breaking starts before you ever open the package. Follow these simple tips to help ensure you are being protected!

--- Remember, if you have never used a condom before, practice first! Put it on by yourself if you're a male(ladies, use a vibrator or banana) to make sure you know the drill before you are in the heat of the moment.


Before foreplay…

-- Check the expiration date. Never use a condom that is expired. Expiration dates are found on the packaging and also on the wrapper of each individual condom.
-- Make sure the condom wrapper has not been opened. If it looks extremely flat and smashed, don't use it.
-- If you feel good about the condom you chose, leave it un-opened in a handy, easy-to-reach location, like on the night stand near the bed... under the living room couch... in the kitchen cabinet... wherever you might get it on!

When to put it on…

-- Put the condom on at the time the penis is erect (hard) before it comes in contact with other skin. This will reduce your risk of spreading disease and will keep pre-cum away from your partner's body.
-- Use the condom during oral sex. You can still spread/contract sexually transmitted diseases and infections through your mouth! Try mint-flavored ones... freshen your breath while you're at it ;)

How to put it on…

-- Carefully open the condom wrapper. Start to tear the edge that has a zig-zag cut. Make sure you are only tearing the wrapper and NOT the condom! Never use your teeth, scissors, etc. to open a condom.
-- Pull the condom out check which side is up. Place your thumbs in the center of the condom and try to unroll it. If you can't, flip it over and try again. You want the rolled edge to be facing out. It should look kinda like a sombrero, like this:

-- PINCH THE TIP OF THE CONDOM so that you are pinching around an inch of latex and then (while you're still pinching the tip!!) put the condom on the penis. This is important-- you don't want any air in the condom because that could cause it to break when the guy ejaculates ("comes"). Put it on, while you are pinching the tip, and unroll it all the way to the base of the penis.
-- Use extra lubricant. Add water-based or silicone-based lube to the outside of the condom after it is already on. This helps to reduce friction and takes more stress off the condom. Don't apply lube to the shaft of the penis before the condom is on! This could cause the condom the slip off. However, a small amount of lube on the tip of the penis before the condom goes on is great for sensation and extra sensitivity.... so, a little lube is alright, but not down the whole penis, please!
-- Never use an oil product with condoms, including Crisco (ick!), Vaseline, hand lotions, or massage oils.


During and after…

-- If it slips off while you're getting off, get a new condom. If it breaks, get a new one. If you are ready for round #2, get a new one. Never re-use a condom or try to put it on after it has been unrolled.
-- When pulling out, hold the base of the condom to make sure it stays in place.
-- Take it off by grasping the opening of the condom at the base of the penis and slowly sliding it off. Wrap the used condom in a tissue and throw it in the garbage. Never flush a condom down the toilet.


Have fun, y'all!

-- Jamie B 
Safety Net team member--

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