Internal condoms (often called 'female condoms' or ‘Femidoms’) are made from very thin soft plastic called polyurethane, and are worn inside the vagina to prevent semen getting to the womb.
When used correctly, internal condoms protect against pregnancy and sexually transmitted infections (STIs). Condoms are the only type of contraception that protect you against sexually transmitted infections (STIs).
When used correctly, they are 95% effective at preventing pregnancy.
First, check the packet for any signs of damage or expiry. Then push the condom to the side of the packet before tearing it open. Take the female condom out of the packet, taking care not to tear it.
Squeeze the smaller ring at the closed end and insert it into the top of the vagina, up to 8 hours before sex. Make sure that the large ring at the open end of the female condom covers the area around the vaginal opening.
When you are having sex, make sure that the penis enters into the condom. Remove the condom immediately after sex by twisting the large ring to prevent semen leaking out and then gently pulling the condom out of the vagina.
Condoms are a barrier method of contraception. They stop sperm from reaching an egg by creating a physical barrier between them. Condoms also prevent the transmission of STIs by providing a barrier.
If you perform oral sex on a penis, you should use an external condom because gonorrhoea, chlamydia, oral HPV and herpes can be passed on this way. If you perform oral sex on a vulva, an internal condom will not provide any protection against orally transmitted STIs.
Yes. Menstrual blood is a natural fluid and will not have any impact on the condom’s effectiveness.
If using condoms to prevent pregnancy you should use them during sex on any day of your cycle including during your period when there is still a small risk of pregnancy.
If using condoms to prevent STIs then you should use them during sex on any day of your cycle including during your period.
When you feel ready to have sex again, it is safe for you to use a condom. You may need to use one even if you are returning to another method of contraception, as it can take time for other methods to start working.
Yes - any kind of lubricant can be used with polyurethane condoms.
No. There are no age restrictions on buying condoms, or for getting free and confidential advice about using condoms or other contraception.
Yes. If you think you are at risk of STIs, you should use a condom during sex when pregnant to protect yourself and your baby from contracting an infection.
If you have not used your regular form of contraception correctly (e.g. missed pills) you will need a backup method until the effectiveness is re-established.