What are biodegradable condoms?

Like everything else biodegradable, biodegradable condoms are condoms made from biodegradable materials and are therefore regarded as the eco friendly way to enjoy safe sex. The definition technically includes all natural rubber latex condoms; however, there sometimes is a fine line between biodegradable and non-biodegradable condoms. Here are a few important things to consider before buying.

What kinds of condoms are biodegradable?

There are two types of biodegradable condoms, lambskin and natural rubber latex condoms. The former is sparsely available in the UK – or the rest of Europe, as a matter of fact – and the latter is biodegradable, but the things are trickier in terms of environmental impact.

Lambskin condoms

These condoms are made of lamb intestine, more precisely of lamb’s cecum, a sort of pouch located at the beginning of the animal’s large intestine. Due to the nature of the material, these condoms are obviously biodegradable. Lambskin condoms protect against pregnancy like latex and other non-latex condoms, but unfortunately they don’t protect against sexually transmitted infections. Thus, they are only suitable to use if you want a truly biodegradable condom to use with a long-term partner after you’ve been tested and resulted negative for any STDs.

Natural rubber latex condoms

Are made from a fluid contained under the bark of Hevea Brasilienesis rubber tree – hence, natural latex condoms are essentially biodegradable. However, most latex condoms are treated with preservatives and coated in silicone lubricants that are not. Thus, even if the condom itself will eventually degrade, many of its components may still pollute the land, water, and air.

What about non-latex condoms?

Non-latex condoms in their widest understanding (not referring to lambskin condoms) are made of either polyurethane or polyisoprene.

Polyurethane is a form of plastic that isn’t biodegradable. However, polyurethane condoms are thinner than latex ones and suitable for people with latex allergies. They’re also more environmentally friendly than lambskin condoms.

Polyisoprene is a synthetic form of latex that isn’t biodegradable either. Like polyurethane condoms, they’re suitable for people with latex allergies and often thinner and more comfortable to wear than all other condoms.

Besides these two types of condoms, there is also a range of female condoms made of nitrile. Like the polyurethane and polyisoprene, nitrile is a synthetic material that isn’t biodegradable. However, these condoms are preferred if you or your partner are allergic to latex and for one reason or another you can’t find a non-latex condom that is the right size or that provides the necessary comfort.

How much time does it take for condoms to biodegrade?

Since latex is a natural material, you might expect a latex condom to degrade and disintegrate fairly quickly. However, things couldn’t be further from the truth.

Most latex condoms contain a bunch of other chemicals and preservatives that alter biodegradability. In other words, it could take thousands of years for a latex condom to disintegrate.

This doesn’t mean you should stop using latex condom – or any other condoms, as a matter of fact. Condoms are the only thing you can use to protect yourself and your partner from sexually transmitted infections and pregnancy, so you shouldn’t give up condoms.

Are condoms considered environmentally friendly?

Yes and no. There is actually a fine line that delimits what is and isn’t environmentally friendly. The condom itself doesn’t have major environmental threats as long as you use it correctly and dispose of it as instructed (in the bin instead of down the loo).

Flushed condoms can wreck havoc on the sewage systems and also pollute the waters once they make their way into rivers and seas. So, simply throw your used condoms into the bin – keep in mind, though, that condoms are not recyclable even if made of plastic materials.

Lambskin condoms have the smallest footprint on the environment, but considering that they’re made of actual lamb intestine, we can’t say they’re environmentally friendly.

Another thing to check is how the latex condoms are made. Most manufacturers use casein in the production process, which is a milk protein. It is unlikely to find traces of it in the finished product, but casein is still sourced from animals. Alternatively, you could consider vegan condoms, which are made exclusively with ingredients that are not derived from animals.

Besides the actual condom, you must also consider packaging. Some companies do everything in their power to limit the environmental footprint of condoms, using recycled materials to make condom wrappers and boxes.

Vegan, natural latex condoms in recycled packaging are your best bet if you’re looking for a biodegradable and environmentally friendly option. Whilst few companies fit the description, Glyde condoms may be just right for you.

What are Glyde condoms and what makes them special?

Often dubbed the original vegan condom, Glyde is one of the few brands that manufacture and sell condoms certified by the Vegan Society and Fair Trade since 2006.

Whilst all their condoms are made of natural rubber latex, Glyde replaced casein with thistle extract. This plant-based protein has the same qualities of casein and makes condoms fully vegan-friendly. Since Glyde condoms are both vegan and fair trade, they have a minimal impact on the environment.

Glyde condoms range

Glyde offers a wide range of condoms that suit most men, their range including a variety of sizes as well as flavoured and textured condoms besides the standard kind. Here’s a quick rundown of their product range:

Glyde Ultra

Glyde’s regular condom variant, they have a regular size and suit most men. Made from super-smooth latex, these vegan condoms are designed to enhance sensations and deliver an almost skin-on-skin contact. Glyde Ultra condoms are colourless, tasteless, odourless, and are lightly lubricated with a silicone based product – an excellent choice for all kinds of sex.

Glyde Ultra size:

Glyde Slimfit

Smaller than Glyde Ultra, Glyde Slimfit are designed for men who need a smaller size condom. Available in an assortment of styles, they come in colourless and coloured variants, flavoured and unflavoured. Whilst they all have the same dimensions, you can choose from clear or red condoms. If you like the red variety, you can also pick from flavourless or strawberry flavoured.

Glyde Slimfit size:

Glyde Maxi

On the opposite side of Slimfit, Glyde Maxi make an excellent choice for those who need a large size condom. Whilst these condoms aren’t available in a flavoured version, you can still get them in either clear or red colour. If you opt for red and would like a flavoured condom, simply use them with a flavoured water based or silicone based lube.

Glyde Maxi size:

Glyde Super Max

If Maxi condoms are still too small, you could always go for Super Max, the largest condoms from Glyde. Like Glyde Ultra, they only come in the classic, colourless variant. They’re also tasteless and odourless, but you can obviously pair them with a flavoured lubricant.

Glyde Super Max size:

Glyde flavoured condoms

If you wear a regular size condom and want to bring fun to your bedroom, you can choose from Glyde’s extensive range of flavoured condoms. Each condom in this range boasts natural flavours that meet all vegan requirements – no animal-derived ingredients and no ingredients tested on animals. You can pick from:

Glyde flavoured size:

What other biodegradable vegan condoms can I choose from?

Glyde aside, there are other biodegradable vegan condoms you can choose from, including EXS and Pasante.

EXS boasts an extensive range of natural rubber latex condoms, all coated with a silicone based lubricant, just as Glyde. Similar to Glyde, EXS condoms are vegan certified by the Vegan Society, although they are not Fair Trade certified.

That said, you can pick from an extensive range of options, including clear, coloured, and flavoured condoms.

EXS also proposes a range of textured condoms for those who’d like to experience or intensify sensations. Here are the options you can choose from:

EXS Regular

Suit most men who need a regular size condom. The main difference between these condoms and Glyde is the anatomical shape of these condoms, with a flared head instead of straight walls.

EXS Regular size:

EXS Snug Fit

The equivalent of Glyde Slimfit, they are ideal for men who need a smaller size condom. They’re colourless, tasteless, and odourless.

EXS Snug Fit size:

EXS Magnum

Larger than Glyde Maxi condoms, EXS Magnum are suitable for men who need more generous width but not excessive length.

EXS Extra Large size:

EXS Jumbo

Are ideal for men who need a condom larger than extra-large. These condoms are similar to all standard condoms in shape and material but offer a very generous fit.

EXS Nano Thin

Designed for maximum pleasure and skin on skin sensations, these condoms are thinner than most natural latex condoms and a bit more flexible, too. They have a regular size and suit men who need a regular size but very thin condom.

EXS Nano Thin size:

EXS Extra Safe

Regular in size but slightly larger than EXS Regular, these condoms are ideal for anal or more vigorous sex. They have thicker walls and resist brilliantly to all sorts of tests and experiments in the bedroom. These condoms are also a great choice if your partner suffers from vaginal dryness.

EXS Extra Thick size:

EXS Ribbed and Dotted

Designed to increase stimulation and enhance your pleasure, these condoms can easily bring novelty into your bedroom. They have a larger nominal width than most regular condoms, a thing that makes them easy to use with a vibrating cock ring.

EXS Ribbed and Dotted size:

EXS Cooling/Warming

Another range of condoms designed to enhance pleasure from EXS, they can either help you delay ejaculation naturally or enhance stimulation through their warming effect.

EXS Cooling/Warming size:

EXS Delay Endurance

Made of natural latex, these condoms are designed for men who want to combat premature ejaculation or with partners that need longer, more careful stimulation. To do that, each Delay Endurance condom contains a drop of Lidocaine 1%, a mild anaesthetic that has a mild numbing effect. Simply rub the Lidocaine onto your penis head after you’ve rolled on the condom.

EXS Delay Endurance size:

EXS Flavoured

Like Glyde, EXS also makes a range of flavoured and coloured condoms that can make all your fantasies come to life. You can choose from:

EXS Flavoured size:

Where can I buy biodegradable condoms?

You can buy biodegradable condoms right here at Condoms.uk to ensure safe and sustainable sex. We source a wide range of vegan latex condoms directly from brands or their official suppliers in the UK. All condoms we sell are electronically tested for safety and meet or exceed all British and European standards. Browse our range of biodegradable condoms now to find the best eco friendly condoms for you.