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Women and people with vulvas are becoming more conscious than ever about what they’re putting inside their bodies — and for good reason.

“People are realizing that everything they put into their vaginas gets absorbed,” says Felice Gersh, MD, OB-GYN, founder and director of the Integrative Medical Group of Irvine in California, and author of “PCOS SOS.” That includes any chemicals, parabens, fragrances, and other toxins.

Is that a concern with condoms? Well, it might be for some, explains Sherry Ross, MD, OB-GYN, a women’s health expert in Santa Monica, California, and author of “She-ology: The Definitive Guide to Women’s Intimate Health. Period.”

“Chemicals, dyes, additives, sugar alcohols, preservatives, local anesthetics, spermicides, and other potentially carcinogenic ingredients are often included in standard condoms,” she says. “Standard brands are not usually concerned about whether their ingredients are organic or natural.”

While most condoms are safe to use, some people may find certain types irritating or uncomfortable because of the laundry list of hard-to-spell ingredients mentioned above.

The good news is there are an increasing number of brands and condoms on the market. People have the option to choose protection without the additives and extra chemicals — which gives folks one less excuse for opting out of safe sex practices.

The short answer is no. The wave of organic condoms on the market and savvy marketing campaigns may be creating a false belief that traditional condoms aren’t good enough, but they are. Don’t fret.

However, you may want to try organic or natural condoms depending on your needs and preferences.

“The goal of the condom is to prevent pregnancy, also STIs, without hormonal birth control,” Ross says. “Standard brands have been researched to prove they’re safe and effective for this use for the average consumer.” But not all condoms are safe for every body.

“A small percentage of women have a latex allergy, which can cause vaginal swelling, itching, and pain during sex,” Ross says. These folks may want to try nonlatex condoms, which may be made out of materials like polyurethane or lambskin.

Organic condom alternatives (which may be latex or latex-free) often have fewer chemicals, dyes, and additives, Ross says. They’re a great option for people who have an allergy or sensitivity to an ingredient commonly found in traditional condoms.

Organic condoms may also be appealing to people who don’t like the way most condoms make them feel or smell, or people who are more environmentally conscious.

The most important thing is that the condom doesn’t contain the ingredient that irritates or bothers you, whether that’s latex, fragrances, or another chemical. Other than that, it won’t make a big difference healthwise if you choose an organic or traditional condom.

In addition to organic and all-natural options, consumers can also choose from:

Ultimately, it really comes down to personal preference.

It’s just important that you do use something effective to protect yourself and your partner. But with endless options, which ones are good to try?

Keep reading for our top picks.

We asked gynecologists and doctors to share their favorite brands of condoms and barrier methods, as well as specific products. Each product has been vetted to make sure it aligns with our standards.

Scroll down to learn more and find the best option for you. Keep in mind that not every product on this list protects against sexually transmitted infections (STIs), so read carefully.

Before you buy, ask yourself the following questions:

  • Will this protect me from pregnancy?
  • Will this protect me from STIs?
  • Does this product contain any ingredients that I’m allergic or sensitive to? What about ingredients my partner is allergic to?
  • Do I know how to properly use this product for optimal results?

If you try a new condom or barrier method and experience irritation, rawness, or other discomfort afterwards, discontinue use and talk with a healthcare professional.

Pricing guide

Prices below are based on a pack of 10 to 12 condoms.

  • $ = under $10
  • $$ = $10–$20
  • $$$ = over $20

Best free condom

Any condom given out at Planned Parenthood

With any decision regarding your sexual health, you have to weigh the benefits and potential costs. That’s why Ross emphasizes that for most people with vulvas, using a condom is the better choice compared to not using a condom because it isn’t organic or natural.

“The condoms I recommend the most are those given out by Planned Parenthood clinics,” Ross says. “They have typically been researched to prove they’re safe and effective for the average consumer.”

Simply put, when used correctly, these condoms can prevent pregnancy and STI transmission.

Plus, they’re free! So, if you’re worried about how to pay for condoms, visit your local Planned Parenthood health center.


  • They’re free and available at your local Planned Parenthood center.
  • These condoms are usually researched for safety and effectiveness.
  • They can prevent pregnancy and STI transmission.


  • There’s less variety to choose from compared to online shopping.
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Best sustainably sourced condom

Sustain Natural Ultra-Thin Condom

  • Price: $$
  • Who they’re best for: consumers who favor eco-friendly options

“In my medical practice, teaching, and even to friends who ask, I recommend Sustain Natural condoms,” says Aviva Romm, MD, a midwife and author of “Hormone Intelligence.”

“Why? Because I know how important it is to use products that are as close to ecologically friendly — both for a woman’s body and the environment — as possible.”

“Sustain uses the most vagina-friendly ingredients possible,” Romm adds. They’re sustainably sourced, vegan, and fragrance-free.

Plus, the condoms are made from fair-trade certified latex sourced from one of the most sustainable rubber plantations on the planet, Romm says. But while the latex may be sustainably sourced, it’s still not suitable for folks with latex allergies.

Sustain condoms are free of:

  • nitrosamine
  • parabens
  • gluten
  • genetically modified organisms (GMOs)

Another benefit is that they’re lubricated inside and out, meaning they offer a more natural feel for both partners.


  • Sustain condoms are vegan, and free of gluten, fragrance, and GMOs.
  • They’re lubricated inside and out.


  • These condoms are not suitable for those with latex allergies.
  • Although these condoms are labeled ultra-thin, some reviewers say they’re too thick.
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Best condom with medical-grade lubricant

LOLA Ultra-Thin Lubricated Condom

  • Price: $$
  • Who they’re best for: people looking for high quality lube

You may know LOLA for their organic tampons, but they also make great condoms, says Wendy Hurst, MD, FACOG, who’s based in Englewood, New Jersey. Hurst helped create LOLA’s sexual wellness kit.

“I recommend condoms every single day, and when a patient asks for a brand recommendation, I say LOLA,” she says. “I like [that] the products are all-natural, have no chemicals, and come in discreet packaging.”

LOLA condoms are free of:

  • parabens
  • gluten
  • glycerin
  • synthetic dyes
  • synthetic flavors
  • fragrance

The condom itself is made from natural rubber latex and cornstarch powder. It’s lubricated with medical-grade silicone oil. But keep in mind that due to the latex, these condoms aren’t suitable for people with latex allergies.

Note: Like their menstrual products, LOLA condoms are also available on a subscription-based service. You can choose among 10-, 20-, or 30-count packs.


  • LOLA condoms are lubricated with medical-grade silicone oil.
  • They’re made of low-odor, natural rubber latex.
  • The condoms are vegan and gluten-free.
  • They come in discreet packaging.


  • These condoms are not suitable for people with latex allergies.
  • The brand doesn’t ship to Alaska, Hawaii, Puerto Rico, Guam, or the U.S. Virgin Islands.
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Best condom for skin-on-skin simulation

Durex Real Feel Avanti Bare Polyisoprene Nonlatex Condoms

  • Price: $
  • Who they’re best for: people with latex allergies

“While the best condom is the one that you’ll use, nonlatex condoms are my favorite,” says Dr. Savita Ginde. “Nonlatex condoms are able to provide barrier method of birth control, are widely available, offer a low chance of allergy, and protect against STIs.”

Durex nonlatex condoms are made from polyisoprene. Like the SKYN brand, people with severe latex allergies should talk with their doctor first before using them. But for most people with mild latex allergies or sensitivities, these will do the trick.

The brand also markets these as “smelling pleasant” (which reviews confirm). While they don’t smell like tires or latex, these are a fragrance-free product, so don’t expect them to smell like flowers.

While the brand advertises this as a good option for a “skin-on-skin” feeling, this is ultimately up for the users to decide.


  • There’s a low chance of allergy.
  • These condoms are lubricated.
  • Although fragrance-free, these condoms have a “pleasant” smell, according to the company.


  • Most condoms “feel” like condoms despite marketing and thinness.
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Best latex alternative with body temperature heating

LifeStyles SKYN Original Nonlatex Condom

  • Price: $$
  • Who they’re best for: people with latex allergies

One of the best known latex-free condom brands on the market, SKYN is a common favorite among healthcare professionals, including Gersh, who recommends the brand to people on a regular basis.

Made from polyisoprene, a lab-made iteration of latex without the plant proteins that most people are allergic to, these are considered latex-free. However, if latex causes you an extreme reaction or anaphylaxis, it’s best to talk with a healthcare professional first.

Other benefits? “They can also truly heat to body temperature for a very enjoyable and natural sensation,” Gersh says.

And they come in different thicknesses and sizes. This is important, because as Gersh says, “one size truly cannot fit all.” Good point.


  • These condoms are considered latex-free.
  • They can heat to body temperature for pleasurable sensation.
  • These condoms are available in different thicknesses and sizes.
  • They come with “smooth” and “long-lasting” lubrication, according to the brand.
  • They’re highly rated by Amazon reviewers.


  • People with extreme reactions or anaphylaxis still need to check with their doctor before trying these condoms.
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Best condom for extra lubrication

Lifestyles SKYN Extra Lubricated Nonlatex Condoms

  • Price: $$
  • Who they’re best for: people with latex allergies who want extra lube

“I am a PhD sexual physiologist, and we always use condoms in our sex research, and I always choose SKYN condoms extra lubricant,” says Nicole Prause, PhD.

“They are nonlatex, so we know we will not face latex allergy reactions. They’re really lubricated, which is essential,” she says. “An unusual reason to recommend a product, perhaps, but we’ve had a number of participants spontaneously comment also that they loved the condoms in our lab and wanted to buy, get them for personal use.”

These are similar to the other SKYN condoms on the list, but they offer extra lubrication. That said, while they’re more slippery than regular condoms, you may still need a personal lubricant, especially for anal penetration.


  • These condoms are nonlatex.
  • They’re more slippery than traditional condoms (the brand says it offers 40% more lube than its original condoms).
  • They’re highly rated by reviewers.


  • You may still need a personal lubricant, especially for anal penetration.
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Best condom for increased sensitivity

Trojan Natural Lamb Skin to Skin Latex-Free Condom

  • Price: $$$
  • Who they’re best for: people who want a natural feel, only looking to prevent pregnancy (not STIs)

According to One Medical primary care provider Natasha Bhuyan, MD, the first thing you need to know about lambskin condoms is that, “since the pores of these condoms are quite large, infectious particles, like HIV or chlamydia, can travel through them, so they don’t protect from STIs.”

So, these aren’t ideal if you’re looking for a barrier method that you can use with multiple partners, someone who you aren’t monogamous with, or someone who doesn’t know their health status (or if you don’t know your own). However, Bhuyan says, “they do protect against pregnancy if used correctly.”

Plus, they usually help boost sensitivity and offer a more natural “feel.”

If you’re looking for a nonlatex condom that’s effective at preventing pregnancy, these Trojan lambskin condoms may be a good option. They’re more expensive than most other condoms on the market, but some people prefer the feel.

Note: Lambskin condoms are made from the intestinal membrane of lambs. This means they’re an animal product and definitely not vegan.


  • These condoms are latex-free.
  • They may offer a natural feeling (more sensitivity).
  • They’re biodegradable.


  • These condoms don’t protect from STIs.
  • They’re made from an animal product (not vegan).
  • Their price is higher than other options.
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Best internal condom


  • Price: varies, possibly no cost through brand website
  • Who they’re best for: people with vaginas who want control over protection

Internal condoms offer similar advantages to external condoms: STI and pregnancy prevention. However, when it comes to protection against STIs like herpes, they may offer better protection than external condoms, thanks to the fact that they cover more surface area.

“Female condoms fit inside the vagina to act as a barrier for sperm before reaching the uterus, thus protecting folks from getting pregnant,” says Anna Targonskaya, OB-GYN with Flo Health, a digital pregnancy predictor. “These are usually manufactured from nitrile or polyurethane and are typically slightly more expensive than male condoms and slightly less effective, with a 79% efficacy rate.”

While less effective than the external condom, the internal condom may be more appealing for a number of reasons. “The FC2 can be a game changer for women, as it gives them the control to protect themselves against STIs,” Ross says.

Some people may also enjoy sex more with an internal condom.

FC2, the only internal condom on the market approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), is latex-free, hormone-free, and can be used with both water- and silicone-based lubricants (unlike some external condoms).

According to the website, FC2 is considered an over-the-counter contraceptive that can be prescribed “with no out-of-pocket expenses.” You may be able to get these condoms for no cost through the website by following the prompts.

Using an internal condom isn’t difficult, but it isn’t taught as much in sex ed classes. Our guide on internal condoms may be helpful.


  • These internal condoms can be used with both water- and silicone-based lubricants.
  • They’re latex-free and hormone-free.
  • They may be available at no cost through the website.
  • These condoms come pre-lubricated with a nonspermicidal, silicone-based lubricant


  • They’re slightly less effective than external condoms with typical use.
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Best OBGYN recommended dental dam

Trust Dam Variety 5 Flavors

  • Price: $$
  • Who they’re best for: people who have mouth-to-vulva and mouth-to-anus contact

Dental dams are sex barriers for mouth-to-vulva and mouth-to-anus contact. They can protect against STIs like:

Gersh says her patients like the Trust Dam Variety 5 Flavors best. “They can easily and readily be purchased online,” Gersh adds.

These dental dams are 6 inches by 8 inches, making them appropriate for most bodies. Flavors include:

  • strawberry
  • vanilla
  • grape
  • banana
  • mint

This product doesn’t have an ingredient list, so keep in mind they could contain additives and sugar that might be irritating for people prone to pH imbalances.

Note: If you don’t have a dental dam on hand and are looking for protection during oral sex, Gersh offers the following suggestion: “You can use scissors and cut open a clean condom, and then use that as protection for oral sex.” If used correctly, this should offer similar protection to a dental dam, she says. Learn how to DIY your own dental dam here.


  • They come in slew of fun flavors.


  • They may contain additives and sugar, possibly irritating for people prone to pH imbalances.
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Best diaphragm

Caya Diaphragm

  • Price: prescription only
  • Who they’re best for: people in relationships where both partners are tested

The diaphragm is another hormone-free birth control and barrier method. Typically used with spermicide, diaphragms are small, dome-shaped cups that are inserted into the vagina to block sperm from entering the uterus during penetrative sex.

They’re up to 94% effective at preventing pregnancy when used perfectly (88% with typical use). (For more information on proper use, see the Caya instruction manual.)

Diaphragms were very popular until the end of the 20th century. Now, they’re making a resurgence with a fresh new look. Caya has redesigned the diaphragm to make it easier and more comfortable to use. You may not even feel it during penetrative sex.

However, diaphragms like Caya don’t protect against STIs. That’s why Dr. Jessica Shepherd only suggests them for people in relationships where both partners have been tested.

The spermicidal gel that Shepherd says should be used with the product is called Gynol II, which is organic and vegan. The gel inhibits sperm mobility and ensures that the Caya is well sealed. It won’t disrupt the vaginal pH, which means less vaginal irritation and yeast infections, she says.

While it’s a pricier option, the product is reusable. It needs to be replaced every 2 years. Just make sure you clean it between uses.

Note: Made of silicone, it’s not compatible with silicone-based lubricant, which can degrade the integrity of the barrier. You can choose a water-based lubricant instead.


  • It’s reusable.
  • It doesn’t require a fitting.
  • The diaphragm is hormone-free.


  • The diaphragm doesn’t protect against STIs.
  • It requires a prescription.
  • It’s not compatible with a silicone-based lubricant.
  • It’s a one-size-fits-most, not one-size-fits-all.
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Best ribbed and contoured condom

Trojan Her Pleasure

  • Price: $
  • Who they’re best for: people with vaginas who want extra sensation

Texture may add a boost of sensation for people with vaginas.

These condoms by Trojan offer a ribbed texture and a contoured design that, according to the brand, can enhance vaginal stimulation. These are also lubricated with the company’s “silky smooth” original lube.

It’s worth mentioning these condoms are available at a reasonable price, are easy to find at most retailers, and are highly rated by reviewers.

Trojan is a trusted condom brand that’s been in the game for nearly 90 years. The company has over 30 types of condoms to choose from. You can take the brand’s quiz to find out which variety might be best suited for you.


  • The ribbed and contoured design may enhance sex for people with vaginas.
  • They come lubricated with the brand’s original lube.
  • Trojan is a well known and trusted condom brand.


  • These condoms are not suitable for those with latex allergies.
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Best certified nontoxic condom

GLYDE Natural & Vegan Condoms

  • Price: $$
  • Who they’re best for: those who want a nontoxic condom that’s made ethically

GLYDE offers an ethical and fair-trade condom that’s also certified nontoxic.

The brand actually has a few certifications:

GLYDE says that it uses sustainable ingredients and cruelty-free practices while still offering a satisfying, safe experience. The company also notes that the condoms are vegan, cruelty-free, and free from parabens and glycerin.

Glycerin is commonly used in cosmetics and condoms. Some brands, like GLYDE, choose to not include it because it can irritate vaginas that are exposed to it for too long.

These ultra-thin condoms come in a few sizes: snug fit, extra large, and thin standard.

There are also organic flavored options: strawberry, wildberry, vanilla, and blueberry.


  • It’s certified nontoxic.
  • The company offers an ethical and fair-trade product.
  • These condoms are vegan, cruelty-free, and paraben-free.


  • GLYDE condoms don’t contain spermicide, which may be a drawback for some people.
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Best odorless vegan condom

P.S. Exceptionally Thin Latex Condoms

  • Price: $$
  • Who they’re best for: people who don’t want chemical or rubber scents

This thin condom by P.S. is vegan, which helps make it odorless, according to the company.

Many latex condoms contain dairy byproducts or other chemicals that give off an odor.

Amazon reviewers seem to agree they don’t give off a latex scent. Plus, they also mention a greater sensation thanks to the condom’s thin design.

Like GLYDE, P.S. condoms don’t contain glycerin or parabens.


  • These condoms are vegan, BPA-free, paraben-free, and glycerin-free.
  • They come in discreet packaging.


  • These condoms are not suitable for those with latex allergies.
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Best condom with ribbed pouch

One Pleasure Plus Condoms

  • Price: $
  • Who they’re best for: those who want vegan condoms designed for extra pleasure

One is a brand that created condoms with a “pouch” at the tip with a ribbed texture. According to the company, this pouch moves back and forth during sex for added pleasure.

These natural rubber latex condoms are also fragrance-free and have silicone lubricant.

Like some other brands on our list, these are also free from parabens, glycerin, gluten, and spermicide.


  • These condoms feature a pouch design for added sensation.
  • They’re vegan and non-GMO.
  • They’re free of gluten, parabens, and glycerin.


  • These condoms are not suitable for those with latex allergies.
  • They don’t contain spermicide, a drawback for some.
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Best natural latex dental dam

Sheer GLYDE Dams

  • Price: $$$
  • Who they’re best for: people who have mouth-to-vulva and mouth-to-anus contact

The same company that offers vegan, ethical and fair-trade condoms also offers dental dams for those who want STI protection during vaginal oral sex and oral anal sex.

GLYDE dental dams are sheets of rubber latex that are 10 inches by 6 inches. They’re available in these flavors:

  • vanilla
  • strawberry
  • wildberry
  • black licorice

Ingredients for these products aren’t listed, but the brand describes them as lightly flavored and scented. This means some people may experience irritation.


  • They’re available in fun flavors.
  • It’s a sustainable brand.


  • They’re not suitable for those with latex allergies.
  • Irritation is possible because these condoms are scented and flavored.
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Condom or barrier methodPriceNumber per packageProduct type
Any condom given out at Planned Parenthoodfreevariesexternal condom
Sustain Natural Ultra-Thin Condom$$10 external condom
LOLA Ultra-Thin Lubricated Condom$$
10 external condom
Durex Real Feel Avanti Bare Polyisoprene Nonlatex Condoms$10external condom
LifeStyles SKYN Original Nonlatex Condom$$12external condom
Lifestyles SKYN Extra Lubricated Nonlatex Condoms$$12external condom
Trojan Natural Lamb Skin to Skin Latex-Free Condom$$$10external condom
FC2possibly free1internal condom
Trust Dam Variety 5 Flavors$$12dental dam
Caya Diaphragmprescription needed1 (reusable)diaphragm
Trojan Her Pleasure$12external condom
GLYDE Natural & Vegan Condoms$$12external condom
P.S. Exceptionally Thin Latex Condoms$$12external condom
One Pleasure Plus Condoms$12external condom
Sheer GLYDE Dams$$$12dental dam

How is a female condom different from another type?

Internal condoms (also called female condoms) fit inside the vagina instead of the outside of the penis, acting as a barrier against sperm.

Why do condoms break?

Sometimes condoms break because they’re too small for the person wearing them. They may also break thanks to microtears — small tears you usually can’t spot.

It’s also possible for old, expired, or improperly stored condoms to break. Finally, using a condom without lubrication may also lead to breakage.

What are the different types of condoms?

There are tons of different styles of condoms. There are internal condoms that fit inside a vagina and, more commonly, condoms that fit on a penis. They’re available in different materials like latex, nonlatex, plastic, and lambskin.

Condoms may come coated with lubrication or spermicide. Depending on your preference, they can be thick or thin and have texture for added sensation. Some brands offer vegan or organic options that are free from certain chemicals and odors.

You may want to consider trying out one of these expert-recommended barrier methods the next time you’re stocking up.

“I just recommend folks do due diligence and make sure that they protect you from what you want to be protected from,” Gersh says.

At the end of the day, you have to think about your ultimate goal, which is usually to prevent pregnancy, reduce the risk of STI transmission, or both. So, if you have access to products on this list, great! But if you don’t, just use whatever condom you can.

Traditional latex condoms are well researched, safe, and effective. You shouldn’t have to choose between something labeled “organic” versus nothing at all. When in doubt, grab a rubber — or wait until you have one to get it on.

Gabrielle Kassel (she/her) is a queer sex educator and wellness journalist who is committed to helping people feel the best they can in their bodies. In addition to Healthline, her work has appeared in publications such as Shape, Cosmopolitan, Well+Good, Health, Self, Women’s Health, Greatist, and more! In her free time, Gabrielle can be found coaching CrossFit, reviewing pleasure products, hiking with her border collie, or recording episodes of the podcast she co-hosts called Bad In Bed. Follow her on Instagram @Gabriellekassel.