By Remy F.
CONDOM MYTH: Only men can use condoms.
People with vaginas have their own condom and it's called the internal condom. The female condom is a thin, but very strong pouch inserted into the vagina or the anus and can be used by both men and women for safe vaginal and anal sex. It blocks sperm from reaching the egg to prevent pregnancy and also protects against STDs and HIV. It is disposable and can be used one time.
CONDOM MYTH: Vaseline works great as a lubricant for condoms.
Lubrication is helpful if you or your partner feels dry, to increase comfort during intercourse, or to reduce vaginal tearing. However, oil-based lubricants can dissolve condoms, causing them to break more frequently. Always use a water-based lubricant. These can usually be purchased at a convenience store or pharmacy. And remember, although "natural is nice," when you need lubrication with a condom, always use a store-bought water-based lubricant, not something from the kitchen cabinent.
CONDOM MYTH: Two condoms are better than one.
Using more than one condom causes condoms to break more easily. Never use two condoms at a time. This includes not using two male condoms, a male and a female condom, or two female condoms at once.
CONDOM MYTH: You have to be 18 to buy condoms.
Adults or your peers may try to convince you that you have to be 18 years old to buy condoms, but you can buy condoms at any age. You can also get them for free if you are 12 or orlder from community clinics and family planning centers. Click here to Know Your Rights in California! Check out the Condom Access Project to find out where you can get free condoms mailed to you, or at a site near you!
CONDOM MYTH: If I ask to use a condom, my partner will think less of me.
The truth is, using a condom is a wise and mature decision and suggests that you know how to take care of yourself and care about your body and well-being. That type of maturity can be quite sexy. Click here to watch a quick video about healthy relationships.
CONDOM MYTH: All condoms are created equal.
There are many types of condoms available for purchase and sometimes novelty condoms are not safe. If you want to be safe, always choose condoms that have the European CE or Kite mark which is a recognized safety standard. Also, be sure to check the expiration date on the packet, make sure it was properly stored (DO NOT put condoms in hot places such as in your wallet or in your car), and that there are no previous tears and wears to the packaging or condom inside.
CONDOM MYTH: You don’t need a condom if you’re having oral sex.
When you have oral sex you are at risk of catching STIs such as Gonorrhea, Herpes, Chlamydia- and even HIV. When having oral sex you can use a condom or you can try using a dental dam. A dental dam is another type of barrier method that can be used during oral sex to prevent the transmission of STDs. It is usually a rectangle or square of material such as latex or a latex-alternative for those that are allergic.