If you were lucky enough to have sex ed, the importance of using condoms and how to correctly put one on a banana were taught in the classroom. But an important lesson that doesn’t appear on the lesson plan is the standard condom being rolled onto the fruit is not one-size-fits-all. With so much variety in length and circumference, it’s a complete oversight to believe a standard condom fits everyone with a penis.
A medical journal of urological surgeons found that the average length of an erect penis is 5.2 inches, with 68% of people with penises measuring between 4.5 and 5.8 inches and 95% are in the 3.9 – 6.5-inch range. But length isn’t the only factor to consider when choosing the right condom. According to Medical News Today, a girth of less than 4.7” needs a snug fit, 4.7 – 5.1” a regular fit, and >5.1” need a large fit.
While a standard condom is around 7” unstretched, it doesn’t guarantee a perfect fit for the wearer with an average-sized penis. (After all, there’s a difference between buying a shirt that technically fits and one that fits better after a tailor.) In addition to being uncomfortable, wearing a condom that isn’t correctly fitted for the body poses some notable health risks. Even when used correctly (i.e. the tip of the condom is pinched upon rolling it on, it is used in conjunction with adequate lubrication for the partner, and sex doesn’t continue post-ejaculation—all things that put strain on a standard condom), if it is too small, the risk of breaking increases, which results in an increase in both pregnancy and STI risk. If it’s too large, the same risks can become a result of it slipping off during intercourse.
Ill-fitting condoms happen for a few reasons.
Most notably, there is a lack of options. At any given drugstore, the leading condom brands tend to only produce two sizes: standard and large. This leaves anyone too small for a standard condom and too large for a large condom in the lurch.
How to Buy the Right Size Condom
Your best bet to buy the right-sized condoms is an online condom store like Lucky Bloke or directly through a condom manufacturer like Unique Condom. The popular site carries hundreds of brands, including Unique condoms, named one of “the best condoms for a perfect fit” by New York Magazine in 2019. Unique not only offers non-latex condoms that are both thinner and stronger than a standard condom (increasing sensitivity without compromising safety) but also multiple options when it comes to size. Currently, there are three to choose from (Secure Fit, Pull, and Plus), but be on the lookout early this year! Due to client demand, Unique will be introducing a fourth size, the XXL condom, due to client demand.