Condom Health: For Men · Custom Fit · For Females (FC2 Condoms)
Planned Parenthood: Northern NJ · Central/Southern NJ · American Sexual Health Association
Female condoms, also known as internal condoms, are the only dual-protection method designed for women to initiate that effectively protects against sexually transmitted infections (STIs), HIV, and unintended pregnancy. They can be used by people of all genders who participate in receptive vaginal or anal sex. Studies have shown that female condoms have pregnancy1 and STI prevention2 rates comparable to male condoms.
Male and female condoms should never be used at the same time, because like trying to use two male condoms at once, they can get stuck together and cause one or the other to slip during intercourse making them ineffective!
For women living with HIV, female condoms are vital to their health and the health of their sexual partners, as they protect compromised immune systems from STIs and decrease the per-act probability of HIV transmission by over 90 percent.4
Female condoms can be inserted hours ahead of foreplay and intercourse. In addition to being practical, female condoms are pleasurable. The outer ring of the condom covers the labia, which can lead to extra stimulation while reducing the risk of transmitting skin-to-skin STIs. Female condoms serve as an essential resource for women to plan pregnancies and have safe, healthy, and enjoyable sex.
Availability of female condoms in the United States also remains limited. The FC2 is currently the only female condom brand approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), who have proposed reclassifying the female condom to a “Class II medical device,” the same classification as the male condom.
With more work and investment in generating excitement around woman-centered options that recognize their diverse needs and experiences, women and girls will be empowered to decide what prevention means to them. Better, safer sex awaits.