A female condom or femidom, also known by the brand name FC2, is a flexible pouch that is inserted into the vagina or anus before sex. They can help prevent pregnancy and sexually transmitted diseases.
During intercourse, the thin silicone-coated, polyurethane or nitrile sheath collects ejaculated semen.
The female condom looks different from the male condom. Female condoms are pouches with a soft, flexible ring on each end.
Fast facts on the female condom:
- Used correctly, a female condom is 95 percent effective.
- Female condoms do not usually contain latex.
- They protect a wider area of the body than male condoms.
- Female condoms can usually be purchased over the counter at pharmacies.
- An office visit with a healthcare provider is not usually necessary.
- Do not use oil-based lubricants with female condoms.
For a female condom to be effective in preventing pregnancy, it must be used correctly.
Female condoms are 95-percent effective in preventing pregnancy when used correctly, with a 5-percent failure rate.
However, statistics show that, due to incorrect use, they are 79-percent effective. Every year, 21 women in every 100 who use a female condom become pregnant.
Male condoms, in comparison, are 85-percent effective.
It is important to follow the instructions when using any type of condom.
The condom can be inserted up to 8 hours before intercourse.
Here are some step-by-step instructions: