How to Put on a Condom

Condoms can help protect you from most sexually transmitted infections (STIs), but they’re not perfect. Sometimes they break. A condom can break if it’s put on the wrong way. Here’s the right way to put on a condom.

Step 1

Squeeze the air from the tip of the condom as you put it on the head of the hard penis.

Man putting condom over tip of erect penis.

Step 2

Leave some room in the tip of the condom to catch semen. Unroll the condom all the way down over the penis.

Man rolling condom over erect penis.

Step 3

Use only water-based lubricants with latex condoms. Using oils or hand creams can cause latex condoms to break.

Man putting water-based lubricant on condom on erect penis.

Step 4

After sex, hold the condom at the base of the penis and pull out of your partner carefully. Then throw the condom away.

Man holding condom at base of penis.

Condom tips

Recommendations for safe condom use include the following: 

  • To prevent STIs, use only condoms made of latex or polyurethane.

  • If you want the condom to feel slippery, use lubricated condoms or use water-based lubricants.

  • Never use the same condom twice.

  • Using spermicides with condoms may help protect against some STIs. Don't use spermicide if it causes itching or pain

  • Keep condoms in a cool, dry place. Heat can damage them. 

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