How to Put on a Condom

Author: by Rachel Venning and Claire Cavanah


Condoms are so effective at preventing pregnancy and disease transmission that they've take up permanent residence in bedside tables and wallets across the world. They're easy to obtain and easy to put on. Keep in mind that most condoms don't break because they're defective, but because they're used incorrectly. So whether you're new to condom use or have had a problem with breakage, brush up on these tips for putting on a condom correctly, then hop on over to How to Choose a Condom.

    1. Look on the condom package for the expiration date. If the date has passed, use a fresh condom. Also, don't use condoms that are brittle or have been exposed to heat or sun.
    2. Take care opening the package, as fingernails and teeth can rip the condom. Tear open the package from the corner with your fingers.
    3. Wait till the penis is erect before putting on a condom.
    4. Check to see which way the condom unrolls, and put a couple of drops of lube on the surface that will be touching the penis. Center it over the penis so that it will unroll properly (think of how a carpet unrolls).
    5. Pinch the small pucker in the middle of the disk of the rolled up condom. Squeeze it shut to prevent air bubbles, and hang onto the top inch of the condom while you place the condom on the head of the penis. If the penis is uncircumcised, pull the foreskin back.
    6. Unroll the condom down the shaft, squeezing the air out as you go. Air bubbles are a common cause of condom breakage. Be sure to cover the whole length of the shaft to prevent semen from leaking out.
    7. Often the condom will turn out to be longer than the penis you are putting it on. That leaves a ring of rolled up latex at the base of the penis that does not stretch as easily as unrolled latex, and can constrict the penis. When guys say that all the condoms they have tried are too small for them, many times this problem is what they are referring to. If you scoot the condom up along the shaft and unroll it completely at the base, you can then scootch it back down so it’s more like a scrunched-up sock than a hard rubber ring, and thus is less restrictive.
    8. After intercourse, make sure to hold on to the base of the condom as you withdraw, to avoid spillage. Never re-use condoms!
Excerpted from Sex Toys 101: A Playfully Uninhibited Guide.