Allergens, animal bi-products, and discomfort — the crux of safe sex with latex condoms. Traditional latex condoms are one of the best forms of contraception and protection against STDs but there are numerous negatives to traditional latex condoms. These negatives prohibit many from using condoms at all, therefore, increasing the risk of unwanted pregnancy and risk of STDs.
According to the American Psychological Association hookups are becoming more ingrained in popular culture, reflecting both evolved sexual predilections and changing social and sexual scripts. Hook-up activities meaning any range of casual, often meaningless sexual behaviors including kissing, oral sex, and penetrative intercourse. Let’s be real, hookup culture is a large part of western society now for all age ranges, genders, and sexualities, but with an increased number of people being part of the culture there’s an increased number of potential STDs and unplanned pregnancies which in turn can lead to mental health issues as well as physical. So protection is key, but with so many negatives to latex condoms, many don’t use them putting themselves at a greater risk.
Condomania, the largest online retailer for condoms in the US and formerly a brick and mortar store in Manhattan founded in 1991 provides its customers with access to safe, reliable sex products as well as sex education resources. Over the past two decades, they have expanded beyond its New York home and have shipped millions of condoms across all 50 states via its website. Customers can now find access to a variety of carefully sourced condoms, lubricants, toys, and more within seconds of visiting the online store. Condomania who has a focus on sex education and ensuring people have access to information regarding sexuality and safe sexual practices has an answer for those who don’t want to use traditional condoms as a result of displeasure, allergies not wanting to support a product with animal bioproducts as well as any other reason. For the non-latex wearer, Condomania recommends vegan condoms, yes, vegan condoms.
Most traditional condoms are made from latex which is harvested from rubber trees so they must be vegan right? Wrong, traditional latex condoms are required to rest in a casein bath, casein is a protein commonly found in milk products. Those with a latex allergy who wish to use condoms also only have the option of using lambskin condoms, but they have tiny holes which decrease STD prevention and aren’t animal friendly due to their dependence on animals.
Vegan condoms, on the other hand, are a more sustainable condom option. Unlike traditional latex condoms, vegan condoms replace casein with plant-based alternatives such as thistle extract. Since they have less harmful irritants they are also less likely to cause yeast infections or other bacterial infections commonly caused by traditional condoms.
“There’s growing environmental awareness but does that mean everyone wants to know if their condom is vegan? – No. Everyone is thinking about the ingredients in their food and their makeup, but no one is thinking about the ingredients that go in the products they put in the most intimate parts of our body.” NEW YORK TIMES
Vegan Condoms for Wellness and Health
Traditional condoms are typically saturated in lubricants packed with other potentially harmful chemicals, fragrances, and additives. Additionally, condom production requires the frequent use of hardeners, preservatives, softeners, agricultural chemicals, and other harmful substances. While there is no specific or concrete proof that traditional condoms are better for one’s health, the chemicals that are involved in the treatment process or lubrication of latex condoms can throw off the delicate pH balance of our reproductive systems particularly in women which can lead to several vaginal issues such as urinary tract infections (UTI’s), yeast infections or bacterial vaginosis.
Vegan condoms, unlike their latex counterparts, opt for natural and plant-based ingredients such as pure silicone oils for lubricants or using organic, food-safe fruit and vegetable extracts for flavored and colorful condoms. Using natural products instead of chemically loaded additives and preservatives can ultimately reduce health issues that may be triggered by sex and those that are commonly seen in women.
But Condoms Don’t Feel Good Babe…
Any sexual being knows skin-to-skin contact feels, in plain terms, better. We’ve all heard the “but it doesn’t feel good” excuse or the “babe but..”
Vegan condoms like Hanx or GLYDE are free of nasty chemicals and don’t cause vaginal dryness or irritation allowing for natural lubrication and increased pleasure. There are also many thin vegan condoms for closer contact so you can focus on having fun and not being uncomfortable.
I’m a Vegan Now
Condoms of any type reduce the risk of STDs and prevent unwanted pregnancy, and they should be used always to protect yourself and others. Luckily with the development of vegan condoms, there are alternatives to traditional condoms that support women’s vaginal health that are cruelty-free, and still, feel pleasurable. They also prevent your 2am hookup from saying “I’m allergic, I can’t wear one” or “they’re uncomfortable” since many vegan condoms do have an extra thin option where they barely feel like a barrier and don’t take away from pleasure.
While those with a latex allergy may feel weary when condom shopping, there are a number of vegan condoms options they can choose from and eliminate the stress of STDs and pregnancy. The thing is, you really are doing the planet a favor by using vegan condoms. Protecting the environment is great, ethical sourcing is great, anti-allergen is great and love is great so it’s time we all go vegan.