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In search of the perfect condom

By Steve Korver Thursday, April 16, 2015 - 10:19
Is the tyranny of latex over? … Can ‘hydrogel’ enhance pleasure? … Would you ride the ‘Electric Eel’? … These news flashes and more in this week’s Sex in the Press. 

We evolve. Why don’t condoms?

“Since the introduction of the rolled latex condom in the 1920s, not much about condoms had changed,” according to ‘We should have a better condom by now. Here’s why we don’t’.

“I don’t get it. Why haven’t they made some crazy new design? Why is it still the same thing, and no one likes it?” wonders one aspiring condom re-inventor.

Happily there are several new condoms – formulated from the perspective of pleasure – now in the testing stage thanks to the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation who began funding innovative rubber research in 2013.

New forms and materials may soon prove to be just as effective as latex, while feeling more like “the real thing”.

But why did it take so long for people to come up with condom ideas that are not the equivalent of “trying to taste your lunch with Saran wrap on your tongue”?

One reason: governmental controlling bodies were overly careful in what condoms were allowed on the market. Sure, it’s great to be ultra-safe against killer STDs such as HIV/AIDS. But if people don’t want to use these ultra-safe condoms, it becomes ultra-unsafe.

In fact, a less safe condom – but one that people used more because they enjoyed using it – could have perhaps saved countless more lives.

21st Century Jimmy

“Self-lubricating, biodegradable and – did we mention – Viagra dispensing? Meet the new, innovative condom with a skin-like feel being made by scientists in Australia,” according to ‘Check out the world's most futuristic condom’.

Using a $100,000 grant from the Big Willie Gates Foundation, “the team from down under have proved that hydrogel can be made into a condom that not only stops sperm passing through, but that also has a skin-like feel. They suggest it will feel like you’re not even wearing a condom.”

But first it needs biometric testing. “If all goes well, it could be goodbye latex and hello hydrogel.”

Peeling back the ‘Electric Eel’

Last year, there was much media hoopla about ‘This open source digital condom will literally shock you’.

Two US tech researchers “created a prototype of an open source, digital condom that's literally wired with electrodes along the side of the sleeve and hooked up to a microcontroller for power. The device creates electrical impulses along the shaft to mimic the pleasurable sensation that is dulled by traditional condoms. It's called, somewhat horrifically, the Electric Eel.”

“The researchers bravely tested the sex gadget on themselves, as well as others, and apparently people found the resulting sensation to be ‘pleasurable, comforting, and exciting’ – which I can only assume was after the initial terror and awkwardness of getting your manhood mildly electrocuted.”

Unfortunately when the researchers sought crowdfunding to develop their product, few people bothered to donate. The eel lost its wiggle and the project died.

But perhaps the Electric Eel did have one positive effect: it helped people realise that using latex condoms isn't such a big deal after all...

Have you tried different condoms to see which were more pleasurable for you? Share your experiences! Leave a comment below or join the discussion on Facebook.

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