Latex allergy occurs in people who are sensitive to the proteins that are found in natural rubber latex. Those who have mild allergy experience annoying but non-life threatening symptoms, including a runny or stuffy nose, itchy skin, and hives.

Those who have severe allergy, however, can have difficulty breathing and extremely low blood pressure when they’re exposed to latex.

If you or your partner have latex allergy, one of the things you might struggle with is using a condom. A lot of condoms in the market are made of natural rubber latex, so putting them on is definitely a no-no for you. Fortunately, there are alternatives that you can explore, such as the following:

Polyurethane condoms

These are the most popular alternatives to latex condoms and are widely available on the market. They’re less elastic than latex products and not as form-fitting, although these factors don’t really impact the condoms’ overall performance.

In fact, many men like these condoms since these transfer heat very well, which results to more pleasurable sex. Polyurethane products can be used with oil-based lubes.

Polyisoprene condoms

Polyisoprene is a new material that was developed in laboratories. It’s actually a type of latex, but it’s engineered in a way that removed the specific proteins that cause allergies.

As a result, polyisoprene condoms have the natural feel of latex and provides optimum comfort to the wearer — without putting people at risk of allergic reactions.

They’re stronger than traditional latex and less prone to breaking, although they should be used only with latex- and silicone-based lube. Oil-based lubrication can damage polyisoprene and make it ineffective.

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Lambskin condoms

These are actually made from sheep intestines (not their skin!) and are a natural alternative to latex condoms. Lambskin condoms have gained numerous fans, who love the thinness of the condoms and their heat conduction ability — which both contribute to a more pleasurable experience. Some users even feel like they’re not wearing anything, which adds to the intimacy of the moment. Environmentally conscious people will appreciate the fact that lambskin condoms are biodegradable and won’t add to the world’s landfills. The downside is that they’re more expensive than other condoms and have a strong, distinct smell.

Female condoms

Male condoms are not the only barrier contraceptives available since you can also opt for female condoms. These are made of nitrile and are completely latex-free, and they’re shaped like a sheath with a nitrile ring on one end and a polyurethane ring on the other. Female condoms work regardless of penis size, making them ideal for men on either end of the size spectrum.

Things to remember:

Aside from choosing the right alternative to latex condoms, you should also keep the following tips in mind:

  • Never use a male condom with a female condom at the same time. They can get stuck to each other during intercourse and become ineffective, which defeats the purpose of using barrier contraceptives in the first place.

  • Make sure to use the right type of lube for the kind of condom you use. As mentioned above, polyurethane condoms are compatible with oil-based lube, while polyisoprene ones are not.

  • Even if you’re not allergic to latex, it makes sense to always have non-latex condoms at hand. This is especially true if you have multiple sex partners — you never know when you’ll get to have some sexy time with a person who’s allergic to latex.

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Having latex allergy should not stop you from enjoying life. With the wide range of non-latex condoms available on the market, you can prevent pregnancy and protect yourself from STDs while enjoying sex at the same time.