Contraceptive Pearl: Internal Condom

While external condoms (also known as “male” condoms) have been in use for over 150 years, an internal barrier method exists as well. The internal condom (also known as the “female” condom) is a great choice for people who prefer to avoid hormones and want protection from sexually transmitted infections. The internal condom can be used for vaginal and anal sex.

The internal condom is a tube with a closed end and flexible rings on each side. The closed side is inserted vaginally or anally. The condom’s external ring can help stimulate the clitoris during vaginal sex.

The internal condom can only be used once–it should be thrown away after use. It has no side effects and is considered a safe non-hormonal method. For pregnancy prevention, it’s 79% effective with typical use. It’s a great option for people with latex allergies, as most internal condoms are made with polyurethane or nitrile. Internal condoms cost about $1.75-$3.50 each.


Helpful Resources

Your Birth Control Choices Fact Sheet

Female/Internal Condom User Guide 



The Female Condom/Internal Condom



The Reproductive Health Access Project does not accept funding from pharmaceutical companies. We do not promote specific brands of medication or contraception. The information in the Contraceptive Pearls is unbiased, based on science alone.

Contraceptive Pearls

This monthly clinical e-newsletter highlights evidence-based best practice for contraceptive care

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