The male condom is not the only tool to help prevent sexually transmitted infections (STIs) and unwanted pregnancy. The female condom offers women the advantage of a form of contraception and STI prevention that she can control.
The female condom is a nitrile pouch that fits inside a woman's vagina. It has a soft ring on each end. The outer ring stays on the outside of the vagina and partly covers the labia (lips). The inner ring fits on the inside of the vagina, somewhat like a diaphragm, to hold the condom in place.
The female condom should be inserted before the penis touches the vagina. It can be inserted anywhere from immediately before to up to 8 hours prior to intercourse--allowing time to plan ahead. Another advanatge of the female condom--it stays in place whether or not a male partner maintains an erection.
To start, add lubricant to the outside of the condom. To insert the condom, squeeze the inner ring of the condom and put the inner ring and pouch inside the vagina.
With your finger, push the inner ring as far into the vagina as it will go. The outer ring stays outside the vagina. Guide the penis into the condom, taking care that the penis is inserted into the condom and doesn't push the condom aside.
After intercourse, the condom should be removed before standing up. Pull out the condom gently, making sure not to spill the content.