Using a Condom Correctly

Practicing safer sex involves using a condom. You may think there’s nothing to it—just rip it open and slide it on. No need to fuss, especially if it’s pre-lubed. Right?  Well, just to test your condom experience, here are a few tips that can make safer sex even safer:

  • Use only latex or polyurethane condoms.
  • Check the expiration date on the condom package. Old condoms can break easily. 
  • Condoms are easily torn, so be careful when opening the package.
  • If you’re uncircumcised, roll the foreskin away from the head of the penis before putting on the condom.
  • Wait until your penis is hard before you put it on.
  • Squeeze the reservoir tip closed before rolling it down, to give the semen a place to collect. 
  • Unroll the condom down the shaft of the penis, while holding the tip.
  • Use only a water-based lubricant.
  • Do NOT use lubes or spermicides that contain nonoxynol-9 (or N-9), as in can increase the risk of HIV infection.
  • If the condom breaks, pull out and replace it immediately. If there is an exchange of bodily fluids, after the condom breaks, talk to your doctor immediately about post–exposure prophylaxis (PEP), which can prevent HIV infection.
  • After you ejaculate, hold the condom at the base of the shaft to keep it from slipping off when pulling out. 
  • Gently peel off the condom and throw it away.

For more detailed information about how to use a condom, you can go to to The

For more information about post–exposure prophylaxis (PEP), go