A California-based company is hoping to revolutionize protective barriers by introducing the Origami Condom (company website). Their three condom types are currently under clinical testing and are expected to hit the market by 2015, but already the prototype has received much attention. Speculations range from eager “Fuck yeahs!” to fearful “Hell nos” like Linda Sharps’ worry of “weird noises” this accordion-shape might make. Well, such are the trials of new technology.
To their credit, Origami Condoms has been applauded by the popular daytime show The Doctors (watch TV segment). Bigger still, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation has titled Origami the leading condom innovator in the private sector. Gates blogs about it here.
Leading Condom Innovation
Head honchos aside, here are at least 4 reasons why this new johnny should turn your head.
It is the first of many things.
1) It’s the first non-roll condom. This is the most striking feature. The bare physics of it are even more intriguing. Its folding “pleats” allow the condom to move and flex consistently with the body, unlike a roll-on condom which is engineered to clutch in place against movement. Another plus is that Origami is made of non-allergenic, soft silicon (here’s our post for more on non-latex options). This video demonstration comparing a male latex condom to an Origami clearly shows the difference (YouTube).
warning: videos here may not be suitable for children or work environment
2) It’s the first to dress in under 3 seconds. The video shows why Origami boasts that it’s male condom can be put on faster and easier than a classic rolling latex. Departure from the rolling-down procedure is made possible by a folding, extendable sleeve. So there is less chance of snagging skin, choking and bunching up in the way of intimacy. The female and anal condoms will come with an optional insertion applicator if help is needed.
3) It’s the first to focus on anal sex. Today, the only other option for protective anal sex, besides the standard roll on condoms, is the female condom. Yet, the FC2 (which is the only female condom available- more on that below) has not been approved by the FDA for anal sex. In fact, before Origami, there are no condoms which are tested and approved specifically for safe anal sex.
4) It’s a new female condom. This is good news given the very limited options of female condoms on the market. The FC2 is the only female condom available in North America and is made of nitrile rubber which carries few allergens. The silicon material of Origami has absolutely no allergies. Also, the flexibility of Origami may be more form fitting compared to the one-size-fits-all design of FC2 which does not favor everyone.
The Origami Condom designs are not only innovative; they’re inclusive of other sexualities and sex practices that are often overlooked in the safer sex industry.
This is my own speculation (and there has been no human testing done, so take with a grain of salt!), but perhaps due to the collar at the opening of the female and anal Origami, this design might open doors to a more effective condom at preventing STIs like HPV, of which standard male condoms are ust 70% effective (according to a study via New Scientist).
“Origami Wont’ Go Viral, But The Promo Should!”- Danny Resnic, Origami inventor and owner
This is what the Origami inventor proclaims in his reach-out Indiegogo Campaign video. Resnic explains that because this is a totally new barrier protection, it is crucial to communicate to the world how to use Origami correctly and consistently. However, Origami is facing serious marketing challenges due to FCC media restrictions.
The FCC will not allow a condom to be shown on TV and radio ads have language restrictions. This makes it really difficult to market a product that is so alternative and yet they cannot verbally or visually explain how to use it, nor can they mention anything relevant like buttholes and vagina or penis.
Thus Origami has launched a campaign to help raise funds to produce a 30 second TV and social media promo that is compatible with the FCC and delivers a clear message on correct and consistent use. Their goal is to reach $50,000 by the beginning of June. Check out their campaign on Indiegogo..
Visit the company website for news and sign up at the bottom of their page to be notified when Origami hits the market. All images are provided by www.OrigamiCondoms.com