Tag Archives: polyisoprene

How Many Times Can You Change A Condom To Latex Free?

Well, if you are Durex Avanti you can be transformed at least three times.

As the world’s most widely distributed condom brand, Durex have a lot of strings to their pleasure bow: offering consumers an abundance of various shapes, textures, lubes and sex accessories to choose from. When it comes to latex free options, however, the company puts the onus on just one condom, yet even this single choice is not without confusion. Durex Avanti, previously the name of their latex-free rubber, is in fact a latex condom. The non-latex option has been recently rebranded Avanti Bare Real Feel™. In fact, this latex-free option has been through a few rebranding rotations. DurexNonLatexArticle

In 2008, it was replaced from being made of polyurethane to synthetic polyisoprene. Polyurethane is a type of soft plastic; polyisoprene is the latest latex-free technology, chemically similar to rubber latex but without the proteins that cause allergic reactions (see our article about the differences). In Europe, the product’s current name is simply, and explicitly, “Latex Free”. The North America version, however, is not so straight forward.

Michael Gesek, from Durex Consumer Relations Canada, explained to Condom Monologues, that when multinational consumer goods company Reckitt Benckiser took over Durex in 2011 they lost supply of the materials to make Avanti Bare and thus it was discontinued in North America. Recently the polyisoprene product was secured again and is renamed Avanti Bare Real Feel. Besides the (longer) new name, nothing is different about this new polyisoprene rubber. It’s now rolling out on store shelves.

However, few consumers know that Durex did not offer latex-free condoms for a period in the midst of company turn over. In fact, Avanti Bare went from being made of polyisoprene to becoming just a standard latex condom. Yet despite this very dramatic product change, Durex kept the name and package similar to the latex free version- as if condom shopping isn’t confusing already!

As expressed by Melissa White, CEO of Lucky Bloke, this move was irresponsible and “a major packaging fail!” In response, Lucky Bloke listed a consumer warning on their site. It’s unclear what Durex’s strategy was for informing the public about this change. One may assume that when Durex lost supply of the polyisoprene condom, they may have sent a notice to selective distributors with the expectation that sellers would inform consumers. To the best of her knowledge, Melissa White does not recall any advanced warning from Durex.

So, please be aware that Durex does offer a latex-free condom now, just make sure not to pick up the former Avanti Bare and read packaging extra carefully!

This article is meant to clear up confusion around Durex’s non-latex options. We include a link to our affiliates at Lucky Bloke which may earn us a small commission.

We Now Have a Condom Calculator!

That’s right. The overcrowded matrix of condom dimesions has been hacked and neatly reorganized by our techy team. Located in the top menu of our Home page under “Condom “Sizes”. This nifty tool allows you to custom search size, material, flavors, brands, etc., across 100 hundred condoms all in one place.  It’s an upgrade from our archaic condom size charts in which you need to scrool lists and lists of products. The calculator does the searching for you and helps you pinpoint your preferences. Give it and try and let us know what you think! Updates and improvements are never ending. Go to the Condom Size Calculator.  CMRuler-803px-withtext

 

Non-Latex Condom & Dam Size Chart

banana measure tapeThe world of non-latex condoms is a mysterious one. There aren’t many options. In another post we confirm that there is no such thing as flavored non-latex barriers. Also, most manufacturers do not make “special” sizes for non-latex. By special, I mean anything smaller or larger than 2.1″/53mm base wide and 7.5″/190mm long. Some brands offer sizing information on their packaging, such as Lifestyles’ SKYN and Glyde. But most remain vague.

Each of our size guides offers non-latex options (see our main condom chart or try our condom size calculator for a quicker search). We have consolidated that information into this post to make dimensions easier to find.  This chart is organized by “Regular” and “Large”. There is no “small” or “snug” size non-latex.  Scroll to the bottom for female condoms (sometimes called “internal condoms”) and sex dams.

Read more about the differences between polyisoprene and polyurethane.

(Some external links may be affiliate links that earn us a small commission but this information is not sponsored by any company.  All opinions and advice are our own).

Non-Latex Regular

Trojan Supra BareSkin
Made of polyurethane. Trojan’s only non-latex male condom.
Classic straignt shape
Base width: 2.1″/53mm
Length: 7.9″ /200mm

LifeStyles Original SKYN and LifeStyles Skyn Extra Lubricated
Polyisoprene. Praised as the first to make the market- the rest followed.
Base width: 2.1″/53mm
Length: 7.5″/190mm

Non-Latex Large

LifeStyles’ SKYN Large

This is the first ever LARGE polyisoprene condom.
It’s wider than most large condoms but not quite as long.  Ideal for thicker than average men.
Base width: 2.2″/56mm
Length: 7.8″/200mm

Female Condoms

FC2 Female Condom
Latex free, made of nitrile synthetic rubber. Here is FC2 official site.
As of now, there is still a one-size-fits-all approach to female condoms.
Opening width: 3.0″ / 76mm
Length: 7.2″/ 185mm

Non-latex Sex Dams

Hot Dams!
Made of polyurethane. These are the only non-latex we could find.  Do you know of other options (besides saran plastic wrap!).
No flavor added.  Standard size.
6″ X 8″/152mm X 203mm

Dams and condoms are extra special when lubricant is involved.  Don’t forget to use this essential item.

Confused about what condom width fits your penis girth? Simply divide you penis girth by 2.25 (penis girth/2.25 = condom width). Read how we got this formula.

If you think we’ve missed a condom (or dam) or have questions please comment below. Follow us on Twitter – Facebook – G+ for updates.

Flavored Non-Latex Condoms

Do they exist? We’ve been asked this question a few times. It’s hard to believe that the condom market would overlook this specific and important need. Unfortunately, after deep digging we did not uncover a non-latex flavored condom or dam. So what’s the orally-minded to do? 

lips lubes**If you are surprised to hear that people do use protective barriers for oral sex than you need to read our post on why and how to protect yourself. Other trusted resources include Scarleteen and The Body. (Some external links are affiliates).

Skip to the end for more about flavored non-latex sex dams. No flavored non-latex male condoms were found. We searched over 20 condom retail sites, flipped through hundreds of flavored options paraben-free, sugar-free, vegan, organic fruit extracts but it seems non-latex also equals non-flavor.  And ditch your resolve to find a dry, non-lubricated, non-latex barrier because those don’t exist either! (see plastic wrap below).

In general, the popular assumption must be that polyisoprene and polyurethane condoms aren’t manufactured with that latexy aftertaste and smell. So what’s the point of flavoring them?  Personally, I have never smelled or tasted anything from standard lubricated polyisoprene condoms (so far I’ve only tried original Lifestyles Skyn). Others have stated that polyurethane also has no-to-little scent and taste. But everyone is different. If you do not like the scent and taste of non-latex we have two important suggestions for you.

Left with these non-latex limitation, here are two options (comment below if you have more ideas).

1) Add your own flavored lube.

Flavored lubricants come in all sorts of variety. Rain offers 8 flavored single packs. From Undercovercondoms.com

Flavored lubricants come in all sorts of variety. Rain offers 8 flavored single packs. From Undercovercondoms.com

Think of non-latex as a clean plate that you can fill up with your personal buffet of hundreds of flavors and sensations. Literally hundreds. Flavored lubes are designed for oral sex.  Yes, they are safe to ingest (you only need a drop or two). Plus, lube does more than just mask condom tastes nice. It greatly heightens sensation, body heat transfer and can be lots of fun. Experiment! However, you may be allergic to an ingredient such as glycerin or silicon, so check the content. Also, make sure your lube is compatible with polyisoprene or polyurethane barriers.

Here are some recommended flavored lubes from some of our Condom Monologuers. The Sexpert’s personal favorite is K-Y’s Your’s & Mine Kissables, strawberry & chocolate flavor. She also recommends any flavor of the Masque flavored gel strips that you put on your tongue before going down. Other condom monologuers love watermelon, sour apple and very berry. Writer Ams Sweiger also praises flavorless lubes- Ideally water-based, like Astoglide, because silicon can leave a funky aftertaste.

2) Plastic Wrap

(But not the microwaveable kind! That has holes which STIs and viruses can pass through). Plastic wrap comes lube-free but is compatible with all types of lubricant (oil, silicon and water-based), and it’s the least expensive of prophylactics. You can also easily cut it to the exact size and shape needed. This is a good solution for latex sensitive people who like lubricants and want safer cunnilingus (vulva oral sex; “eating out”) and analigus (anal oral sex; “rimming”). However, plastic wrap is not really recommended for effective protection when giving head (fellatio; “blow job”). Also keep in mind that plastic wrap tears more easily than other non-latex options, so be a bit more tender.

The one flavored non-latex is…

Well, vulvas and buttholes- it’s the Hot Dam! Banana is it’s flavor. However, it looks as though the manufacturer has stopped producing this version as we can’t confirm any retail site with them currently in stock! In other words, Hot Dams are available, but not necessarily with flavor.

Help us update this post

Have you come across any non-latex flavored barriers?  Do you have a favorite lubricant?  Post a comment or ask question below.

SKYN Original Polyisoprene Condom Review

 

SKYN Originals have been around a while now and seeing as I am involved in a condom blog I thought it was about time I actually tried the non-latex offering.  In fact, this is the first condom ever made from polyisoprene.

I knew before I tried SKYN that they had advertised as the first and that this material was not latex rubber. However, I did have to ask the question What the f**k is polyisoprene? As it turns out, it is pretty much just rubber. It has very similar chemical structure, however, it’s synthetic and derives from petroleum rather than tress. It’s close enough that it’s sometimes referred to as ‘synthetic natural rubber’.

Although very similar in structure to latex it’s a good alternative for those who have a latex allergy or if the smell and taste of latex repels you. However, it’s not so good if you are trying to ween off petroleum dependency.

SKYN is part of the Lifestyle’s range in the USA and it can be found licensed for sale pretty much across the world including other brands such as Mates in the UK.

Trying a new condom can be oddly nerve racking. A bad condom can break the moment which (of course) is much less of a problem than it actually breaking but still not the outcome one wants! Non-latex still hasn’t yet taken the mainstream market yet…perhaps because they are more expensive or because latex allergy is not very prominent. But one does not need allergies to enjoy these johnnies.

Here’s My Review

So unwrapping the SKYN, my partner and I were not totally sure what to expect.

The moment was pretty much anti-climatic. Tearing open the wrapper, like Charlie looking for the golden ticket, we found simply a condom- a humble, transparent, normal looking rubbery lubricated condom. The condom rolled on very well. No drama. No talking points!

From other reviews I’ve come across, I expected it to feel and sound like sandwich bag, but no. The condom felt great! If no one told me, I wouldn’t have been able to ousted it out as a latex imposter. As much as I could tell it felt the same as a perfectly fitting latex condom. If comparisons had to be drawn I would say it felt like regular Lifestyles Ultra Thin or Durex Love.

Size wise it fit me great. The SKYN original is an average sized condom with a base width of 2.08”/53mm and a length: 7.5”/190mm. There is an XL and extra-lubricated version in the range so it may be worth picking up the multipack to get an idea of what works with you the best. In fact, this is the only non-latex XL condom available on the market!

SKYN say that their condom is softer and more flexible than regular latex. While I can’t for sure say that is the case, I can say after a few uses I have experienced no comfort problems, neither has my partner. They roll on easily, fit well and don’t inhibit feeling during sex. Perfectly satisfied.

I would say they are well worth a try!

Some external links are affiliate links that help us pay for this site. This is not a condom company endorsement. All opinions shared are the author’s own.