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                What are non-latex condoms?

                Non-latex condoms are condoms made from other natural (lambskin) or synthetic (plastic) materials. These condoms are mainly designed for people with latex allergies, but they can be used by anyone who wants a thinner condom that can deliver more natural sensations.

                According to a study published in the Journal of Occupational Health, scientists revealed that latex allergies affect almost 5 per cent of the general population and nearly 10 per cent of healthcare workers.

                All these people can’t use natural rubber latex condoms to protect themselves from sexually transmitted infections and to prevent pregnancy. Luckily, most non-latex condoms on the market are made of modern materials that deliver the same resistance as latex condoms without the side effects.

                Types of non-latex condoms

                Non-latex condoms can be divided into two main categories, synthetic non-latex condoms and natural non-latex condoms.

                Polyurethane condoms

                Made of plastic, polyurethane condoms are as effective as natural latex condoms against pregnancy and sexually transmitted infections. They come in both male and female varieties, so you have options if you are looking for a condom that goes inside the vagina rather than on your penis.

                Polyurethane condoms are popular for their thin walls that conduct heat well and deliver an almost skin-on-skin feel. However, polyurethane isn’t as stretchy and elastic as natural latex, so the condoms might not fit as well.

                The main risk with polyurethane condoms is that they might slip off or break during intercourse. On the bright side, polyurethane condoms from brands like Pasante are compatible with almost all lubricants, including oil and petroleum jelly alongside the usual water-based and silicone-based lubricants.

                What are the advantages of polyurethane condoms?

                What are the disadvantages of polyurethane condoms?

                What brands make polyurethane condoms?

                Most brands nowadays make their latex free condoms from polyisoprene or synthetic resin. However, Trojan’s Supra condoms are made of polyurethane. These condoms are very thin (0.047mm), but their nominal width of 58mm makes them suitable for men who need a larger size condom. If you normally wear a regular size, there is a high risk they’ll slip off during intercourse.

                Polyisoprene condoms

                Like polyurethane condoms, these condoms are made of plastic. However, the newer technology ensures higher elasticity and resilience. This type of synthetic rubber conducts heat better than latex and is much thinner. It delivers an almost natural feel and also stretches better than polyurethane, so you won’t have to worry about the condom fitting awkwardly or uncomfortably on your shaft.

                Like latex condoms, polyisoprene condoms are compatible with water-based and silicone-based lubes, but oils and petroleum jelly could damage them. Most brands making non-latex condoms, including SKYN and Durex, are now using polyisoprene instead of polyurethane.

                What are the advantages of polyisoprene condoms?

                What are the disadvantages of polyisoprene condoms?

                What brands make polyisoprene condoms?

                SKYN is the most popular brand of polyisoprene condoms. Striving to cater to everyone’s needs, SKYN condoms come in multiple sizes and types.

                The brand’s regular size has a nominal width of 53mm and 180mm of length. In this category, you can find the SKYN Original condoms, SKYN Elite condoms which are ultra thin, as well as textured condoms. A large size with a nominal width of 56mm and a length of 200mm is also available from the brand.

                Durex is another brand that makes polyisoprene condoms. However, the choices are limited. Durex Real Feel condoms have a nominal width of 56mm and are 205mm long.

                Synthetic resin condoms

                Synthetic resin is a rather innovative non-latex material used by few brands. The official name of this material is AT-10, and its main advantage is that it has higher strength in thinner sheets than other materials, including polyisoprene, polyurethane, and latex. The material is not stretchable, but it has the ability to cling to the skin in a way similar to polyurethane.

                What are the advantages of synthetic resin condoms?

                What are the disadvantages of synthetic resin condoms?

                What brands make synthetic resin condoms? 

                Pasante is one of the few brands that make synthetic resin condoms. You can pick from a thicker (and smaller) version, as well as a thinner and larger one.

                Pasante Sensiva condoms have a nominal width of 58mm and are 180mm long. At 0.028mm thick, these condoms are on the thicker side as far as synthetic resin condoms are concerned. They’re obviously thinner than all other types of condoms. A nice touch is the condom placement in an easy-to-open round pot that minimises the risk of damaging the condom when taking it out of its packet. Pasante Sensiva condoms can be used with all types of personal lubricants and massage oils, as well as silicone or water-based lube.

                Pasante Unique condoms are larger and thinner than Sensiva. They have a nominal width of 60mm, a length of 190mm, and are 0.015mm thick. These condoms are resilient and extremely flexible, feeling like nothing at all between you and your partner. Pasante Unique condoms can also be used with all types of intimate lubricant, including oil products. Both AT-10 condoms from Pasante are cruelty-free and vegan friendly.

                Lambskin condoms

                The only natural alternative to latex condoms, lambskin condoms have been around for centuries, long before the latex variety. Whilst they provide the most natural feel, they are not as effective as latex condoms against pregnancy and sexually transmitted infections.

                Nowadays, lambskin condoms are sparsely used in some parts of the USA and Australia, but they cannot be sold in the UK and Europe.

                What are the advantages of lambskin condoms?

                What are the disadvantages of lambskin condoms?

                What brands make lambskin condoms?

                Trojan Naturalamb is one of the few lambskin condoms available. These condoms have an extra-large size (68mm nominal width) and feature a rounded head with no teat end. This design improves comfort, but could make it challenging to prevent leaks after ejaculation. Nevertheless, these are some of the most comfortable condoms you can find.

                Advantages of non-latex condoms

                Non-latex condoms are majorly used by people with a latex allergy, but they come with advantages that could make them a suitable option even if you’re not allergic to latex. Here are some of their most common pros:

                Potential downsides of non-latex condoms

                Like everything else, not all is nice and shiny when it comes to non-latex condoms. Depending on the material, they may also have some downsides.

                How come non-latex condoms are thinner than latex condoms?

                It all comes down to the manufacturing process and properties of each material. Plastic materials including polyurethane and polyisoprene provide the same resistance as latex condoms even if they have thinner walls.

                Whilst thick non-latex condoms exist, most people prefer non-latex condoms precisely because of their thin walls designed to enhance sensations. Plastic also conducts heat better than latex, making you feel closer to your partner.

                To understand the thickness difference between latex and non-latex condoms, you should know that the thinnest latex condoms are rarely thinner than 0.045mm, whilst thin non-latex condoms can have walls as thin as 0.020mm or even thinner.

                Why are most condoms made of latex if the material may cause allergies?

                Manufacturers prefer using latex instead of non-latex materials due to the material’s resistance and costs.

                Latex condoms were invented in the 1920s and are made from natural rubber, a substance that is harvested from trees and is rather inexpensive. Over the decades, the manufacturing process has also been optimised, and nowadays, making latex condoms is cheap.

                Despite its low cost, latex is a highly elastic and very resilient material. Several studies show that latex condoms are the safest choice if you’re looking for utmost protection against sexually transmitted infections and pregnancy.

                Modern non-latex condoms – the polyisoprene kind – are a new invention. Before them, polyurethane condoms were the only non-latex variant available in addition to lambskin condoms.

                Polyurethane is a cheap plastic material, but its lower elasticity compared to latex results in slightly looser condoms. Although thinner than latex, polyurethane condoms are not as comfortable due to their wider fit.

                This material is also more likely to break during intercourse and, due to the condom design, more likely to slip off.

                Polyisoprene condoms revolutionised the non-latex condom industry, offering similar fit and efficiency as latex condoms. However, these condoms are more expensive to make; thus they are slightly less popular than the affordable latex condoms.

                Considering that latex allergy isn’t a common condition – only around 5 per cent of the general population is allergic to latex, most manufacturers still use latex for their condoms to ensure the quality and affordability of their products.

                How do I know that I’m allergic to latex?

                Whilst latex allergy isn’t very common, sensitivity or allergy to the proteins causing this hypersensitive reaction can develop in time.

                Healthcare workers, as well as people who usually use latex gloves or other latex products frequently, are more likely to develop a sensitivity or allergy to latex.

                Most people find out they are allergic to latex when they experience unexplained itching after using latex condoms. However, itching may also be caused by spermicide agents or could be a reaction to the lubricant you and your partner are using.

                Latex allergies usually develop slowly, and symptoms can appear after years of repeated exposure. In most cases, you will only experience a localised reaction if you are allergic to latex and have used a latex condom, including:

                Systemic reactions are rare, but symptoms can include:

                Anaphylaxis is a very remote probability and manifests with breathing and swallowing difficulty, as well as swelling of the face, throat, or mouth.

                If you have any of the symptoms above whilst using a latex condom, stop using the condom immediately and switch to a non-latex variant. You should also visit your GP to get tested for latex allergy.

                Can I use latex condoms if my partner is allergic to latex?

                No, you cannot use latex condoms if your partner is allergic to latex. Latex condoms also come in contact with your partner’s skin, so they can easily cause allergic reactions.

                Furthermore, women are more likely to have systemic or anaphylactic reactions because the vaginal lining absorbs latex proteins faster than the skin on your penis. Using latex condoms if your partner is allergic may result in a life-threatening condition.

                How to choose non-latex condoms?

                Buying non-latex condoms could feel trickier than buying standard condoms, but you should follow the same rules. Once you’ve figured out what size you need, simply select your favourite product in the right size.

                One thing to keep in mind is that polyurethane condoms have a slightly looser fit. You should avoid using lube inside the condom to prevent it from sliding off during intercourse, but you shouldn’t size it down. A smaller polyurethane condom may feel snugger, but due to the lower elasticity of the material compared to latex or polyisoprene condoms, condoms made of polyurethane may burst or tear during intercourse if they don’t fit slightly loose.

                That said, most brands including SKYN and Durex now make their non-latex condoms of polyisoprene, a material as elastic as latex and that fits exactly in the same way.

                Where can I buy non-latex condoms?

                You can buy non-latex condoms online right here at Condoms.uk. Our selection includes a variety of polyisoprene condoms in all sizes and sourced from the most renowned brands. Committed to help you find the best sexual health products at affordable prices, we source all our products directly from brands or their official distributors in the UK. The CE and BSI Kitemark on each package guarantees that all condoms we sell are genuine. 

                Browse our range and buy Durex, Pasante, or SKYN latex-free condoms. All orders of £25 or more come with free delivery, and you can rest assured you’ll receive your products in discreet packaging.

                FAQs

                Are non-latex condoms more likely to break?

                Not necessarily. Polyurethane condoms are indeed more likely to break due to the lower elasticity of the material. Their effectiveness is still quite good, though, around 95% if used correctly.

                Polyisoprene condoms, on the other hand, are as effective as latex condoms and are not more likely to break. On the contrary, they offer the same degree of protection (around 98% if used correctly) as latex condoms whilst enhancing sensations due to their thinner walls.

                What lube can I use with non-latex condoms?

                Many people believe that non-latex condoms are compatible with all types of lubricants. However, this is only true for polyurethane condoms.

                Oils and petroleum jelly may damage polyisoprene condoms just as they damage the latex variety. Before using any type of intimate lube with your condoms, check the condom packaging as well as the lube bottle – almost all brands write down the type of lube (or type of condoms) their product is compatible with.

                Will non-latex condoms feel synthetic on the skin?

                Wearing a condom that feels like your penis has been wrapped in cling film is no fun. Luckily, non-latex condoms won’t feel like plastic on the skin, despite being made of plastic materials. If anything, they often feel more natural than latex condoms due to the thinner walls and higher flexibility. That’s why many gents turn to non-latex condoms despite not having an allergy to latex.

                Can I use non-latex condoms for oral or anal sex?

                Yes. Despite being thinner than latex condoms, non-latex condoms are very flexible and elastic, two characteristics that make them suitable for rougher or anal sex. At the same time, the thinner walls make them a better choice for oral sex, as they can easily enhance sensations.