WHAT IS IT?
A sheath made from latex, plastic, or other materials worn over individual fingers.
HOW DOES IT WORK?
By covering the fingers, gloves protect both partners from STIs that be spread through bodily fluids, including vaginal fluids and blood. The glove covers cuts, fresh tattoos, hangnails, dermatitis, eczema, and other conditions that may increase the risk of spreading STIs.
HOW EFFECTIVE IS IT?
There are few statistics on the effectiveness of finger condoms in preventing the spread of STIs during sexual contact. However, gloves are used by doctors and nurses all the time, especially during Pap smears, pelvic exam, and STI checks! This is because gloves protect against STIs and other germs and dirt that hand washing can never guarantee. A finger condom is essentially a glove for your individual fingers, rather than your whole hand.
WHEN SHOULD I USE IT?
Finger condoms should be used during any digital sex where there is a risk for the spread of STIs. Finger condoms can be great if a partner is sensitive to friction – gloves and lube make for a smooth and slippery surface! Finger condoms should be worn during sex where blood may be present, such as during someone’s period. They should be worn if there are any cuts, recent tattoos, hangnails, dermatitis, eczema, and other conditions present on the fingers that may increase the risk of blood and open wounds. It is especially important to use finger condoms when engaging in sexual activity with new/unfamiliar sexual partners, or if you have been/are engaging in sexual activities with multiple sexual partners. Finger condoms are also a great option for anal sex, to limit contact with potential fecal matter.
HOW DO I USE IT PROPERLY?
Finger condoms are easy! If you are using a purchased finger condom, carefully open the package and roll the condom over your finger before engaging in any digital sex. Lube can be used on the outside of the condom. If your condom is made of latex, do not use oil-based lubricants, as it can break down the latex.
To make a finger condom out of a glove:
1) Using clean and sharp scissors, cut off one (or more!) fingers from a latex or plastic medical glove.
2) Slip the finger of the glove over your own finger.
If you have long or sharp nails that may puncture the condom or scratch your partner, stuff the finger with a cotton ball or tissue before placing your finger into the condom.
ADVANTAGES VS DISADVANTAGES:
- Protects against STIs. It offers coverage of hands rather than genitalia and may better protect from STIs transmitted via skin lesions, blood, or shedding.
- Offers a safer sex option for partners who rely on digital sexual stimulation as a major part of their sex lives
- Can be used on everyone who has hands
- Reduces friction
- Does not require a prescription to get
- Inexpensive if being made from a glove
- Gloves can be purchased at any grocery store or drugstore without the assumption that they are being used for sexual activities
- Can be used for fetishes and role playing that involve medical professions
- Can be made of several different materials and in different colours
- Does not protect against pregnancy
- Difficult to find pre-made in pharmacies and stores, and may need to be purchased at sex shops or online
- If not made or purchased in advance, can be a burden to prepare in the heat of the moment of sex
- Some people feel embarrassed or uncomfortable when suggesting use of finger condoms
- Not as widely recognized as a safer sex method as other barrier methods
- Can lower sensitivity
- May have a clinical feel
- Does not protect the whole hand