Yes, that’s right — 35%! So if you’ve ever thought your partner might need a smaller condom, you’re hardly alone.
Ill-fitting condoms can ruin sex for everyone, not to mention it’s unsafe. If you have to worry about it slipping and sliding, neither you nor your partner will be able to enjoy each other as much as you should. And if you’ve ever had a partner lose a condom inside of you (which really can happen!), well...no one should have to go through that.
While there are numerous condom sizes and just as many different shapes available, most people are using the wrong condom size.
Smaller condoms (aka tighter, slimmer or snugger condom) can solve a variety of issues. If condoms slip off, or slide during sex or if you’re feeling a lot of extra baggy material, then what you likely need is a slimmer, more tapered condom.
If too much material is bunching at the head of the penis, you could be using the wrong condom shape. A condom with a less bulbous, more close-fitting head may be much more comfortable and increase sensitivity.
Penis-shame is a real struggle for many people — even those who seem most confident.
“Have you ever been insecure about your penis?” I asked my friend, someone I admire for his ability to undermine societal expectations of masculinity.
“Yes, of course,” he says. “Especially as teenager. I felt like all women had this preconceived preference of what a penis should look like. Then there were my guy friends insulting each other with small dick jokes.”
When looking at the statistics: clearly, he’s not alone. Thirty percent of British men are very dissatisfied with their penis size. Worldwide, nearly half of men want their penises to be larger. Men who are dissatisfied with their bodies are primarily concerned about their weight, muscularity, height and—you guessed it—penis size.
Size shame is so pervasive that some would rather practice unprotected sex than shop for and try out different sizes. They claim that there simply are no condoms on the market that are made to fit them. Others blindly continue buying the wrong size, going their entire lives without realizing that they’re using the wrong condom—and that their sex lives are suffering for it.
It’s important to avoid framing your partner’s penis size as a problem to be solved. The problem is the condom, not their penis. This is especially important if you’re aware that your partner is insecure about their size.
Remember that penis scrutiny is arbitrary and the so-called superiority of bigger penises is actually bogus. Sexual satisfaction comes down to much more important things from intimacy and psychological connection...to condom fit! When you find the right condom, both partners’ pleasure (and safety) increases dramatically. Smaller condoms can actually help your partner feel better about using a condom during sex.
Be honest and communicate that you’re unsatisfied with the condoms you’ve been using. Express that you want to experiment—not just with smaller condoms, but with different materials, shapes, and textures—in order to find the optimal condom for you both.
Proposing smaller condoms doesn’t have to be awkward, no matter how casual or serious your relationship. You might not need to say anything at all. You can simply buy the condoms on your own and introduce one when the time is right.
When you start to feel things heating up, take a quick break and retrieve the new rubbers. Have fun with it and tell them you’ve bought a lot of new condoms and have a lot of experimenting to do. As you put it on, ask him how it feels. Talk about what you like about it.
Remember it’s never about “tricking” him into using smaller condoms, or “making” him do it. It’s about trying something new together that is going to improve your mutual pleasure and safety.
Alternatively, you can shop for new, smaller condoms together. This has a lot of benefits. It involves communicating with each other about what materials you like, what textures you don’t like, and anything you’re unsure of or are curious about.
Talking about what feels good together will make talking about other sexual facets a lot easier. In many ways, shopping for condoms together can be an extension of foreplay.
There’s a whole world of smaller condoms out there. Why not try them? Don’t just stick with the first one you find. The real trick to finding perfect condoms and knowing what you enjoy together is keeping an open mind and experimenting. Condom assortments and sampler packs of smaller condoms are the most fun and cost efficient way to try a bunch of different options and find what you both like best.
You know you want smaller condoms — but do you want them pleasure shaped? Ribbed? Studded? Extra thin? Bringing home a sampler pack is like a sexy challenge: the only way to figure out which one is best is to try them all!
Japanese condoms tend to be on the slimmer side and are widely celebrated as some of the best thin condoms on the market. Japanese brands like Kimono and Okamoto’s Beyond 7 can be great options for someone who’s just slightly smaller than the average.
What’s great about Japanese condoms is that they’re not marketed as being specifically for smaller penises — they just happen to run on the slimmer side. So if you’re looking for a discreet way to introduce your partner to smaller condoms, Japanese brands might be the way to go.
Of course, there’s still plenty of variety to choose from, so starting with a sampler pack of Japanese condoms is the best way to figure out exactly which of these brands is best for you.
Using condoms that fit increases safety and pleasure. And finding the right condom for you and your partner will dramatically your improve safer sex experience.
So, what are you waiting for!