8 Surprising Facts About Condoms

by Alisha Bridges Patient Advocate

Condoms have been one of the first and lasting forms of contraception in human history. Check out these 8 interesting facts on condoms and their use today.


Condoms required at the job

For an adult star, condoms are not currently a requirement, but the Department of Industrial Relations may try to change this rule. Back in 2004 a huge HIV outbreak hit the porn industry which raised some questions on the safety of their work environment. DIR is considering requiring all adult stars to use condoms in films.

Sheep roaming in a pasture.

Animal skin vs. latex

Lambskin condoms are great for people who have latex allergies, but will only reduce the risk of pregnancy and not the transmission of STDs including HIV. The HIV virus is small enough to slip through the pores of these condoms. Not only will they serve as less protection, they will cost you much more. However, latex allergies are very common affecting at least 3 million per year.

Ancient art work.

First documentation of condom use

According to the US National Library of Medicine National Institute of Health condoms have been around as early as 3000 BC. Research by the institute discovered the first known documentation of the “condom” was that of King Minos of Crete. The bladder of a goat was used to protect his partners from his semen that was said to contain "scorpions and serpents".

Stacked up tires.

Goodyear condoms

Does Charles Goodyear ring a bell? Often times we hear the name often referred to the popular store Goodyear Tire. But did you know Charles contributed to the make of the condoms we love and use today? Back in the 1800’s, discovery of vulcanization which creates rubber, helped produce the material of the condom, moving away from animal skin.

Man open condom packaging.

Increased usage

According to the Guttmacher Institute, an organization dedicated to sexual and reproductive health, the use of the male condom increased from being used by 52% of people in 1982 to 93% in 2006-2010. The reason for the increase? The AIDS epidemic in the early 80’s likely contributed to the rise in numbers.

Gallon of milk.

A gallon of...

An experiment conducted by Planned Parenthood proved that a condom can hold up to a gallon of liquid. The speculations about the condom not being “big enough” can now be put to rest. Check out the video of the experiment here.

Condom on a banana.

Thin skin

Currently a company in China by the name of Aoni holds the Guinness World record of manufacturing the thinnest condom in the world. Nanosilver technology is used which allegedly prevents bacteria build up, and cleans and sterilizes human secretions.

Colorful condoms.

Say my name

There are over 50 different slang name for condoms. Some include the wetsuit, the rubber, the jimmy, the nightcap, naughty bags, bullet proof vest, raincoat, love socks, love glove, willie hat, rubber johnnies, Johnny bags, gentlemen jerkins, rubberman, love glove, and more. Which of these names have you heard?

Alisha Bridges
Meet Our Writer
Alisha Bridges

Alisha Bridges has dealt with psoriasis since 7 years old after a bad case of chicken pox triggered her disease to spread on over 90% of her body. For years she hid in shame afraid of what people would think of such a visible disease. She has suffered from depression, anxiety, and panic attacks due to psoriasis. Years ago Alisha wrote a letter entitled “My Suicide Letter.” The letter was not about actually killing herself but killing parts of her like low self-esteem, fear, and shame so she could truly live to her fullest potential. This proclamation catapulted her into psoriasis and patient advocacy. Following this letter she created a blog entitled Being Me In My Own Skin where she gives intimate details of what it’s like to live with psoriasis. Alisha is a community ambassador for the National Psoriasis Foundation and has served her community in countless ways to help give a better understanding of what’s it’s like to live with psoriasis. Her life motto is the following: “My purpose is to change the hearts of people by creating empathy and compassion for those the least understood through transparency of self, patient advocacy, and dermatology.” Alisha is also a Social Ambassador for the HealthCentral Skin Health Facebook page.