Sustainable condoms? Vegan condoms? Well, not all condoms are created equal. We often don’t realize the exact ingredients – and environmental consequences – of the products we use. Find out more here!
You might be asking why most condoms aren’t vegan in the first place. The answer is that many manufacturers still use a dairy by-product called casein to soften the natural latex. The casein doesn’t remain in the final product, so you won’t always see it on the packaging, but even a natural condom from biodegradable latex may not be vegan.
Whether or not you’re concerned about whether your contraceptives are vegan, you should always consider their sustainability – as with all consumer products. Condoms are great for many reasons, and it’s important to emphasize both sexual health and sex positivity here. Unfortunately, even sustainable vegan condoms are still (of course!) single-use, throwaway products. Also, even condoms made from latex – which is simply the organic substance rubber – may still take a long time to decompose because of the other chemicals in their make-up. Finally, the conditions under which we harvest latex are often harmful to both the environment and the people involved.
A More Sustainable Condom
Fortunately, there are a number of companies and producers who are aware of all these concerns. Our compact reviews below will explain which condom brands are vegan (all of the ones we list here are), and whether you can get organic condoms (in a word, no – there is currently no organic certification body which evaluates condoms). Still, let’s find out which are the greenest, most sustainable condoms.
Lola: Reproductive Care for Women by Women
Like a number of the other brands we review here, Lola is a female-founded company with a very strong message when it comes to sexual health and feminine care. Their ultra-thin vegan condoms are gynecologist-approved and made with ingredients you can trust (or at least recognize!) They also work to support women’s health via product donations.
sustain: Sustainable Condoms
This brand’s credentials are pretty air-tight. Their latex is fair-trade (in compliance with the Forest Stewardship Council), and their natural condoms don’t use parabens, fragrances, or nitrosamine, a chemical which may be carcinogenic. To top it off, they donate 1% of their sales (not just profits!) to American women’s healthcare organizations. You can try out their range here, on Amazon**.
Glyde: Ethical Vegan Fair-Trade Condoms
Glyde, as a certified B Corp, is very serious about the ethical sourcing and manufacturing of their products. They are registered as vegan with the Vegan Society, and their ethical condoms are hypoallergenic (less latex protein) and free of chemicals of concern like talcum powder (they use oats instead, for example). Available online here**.
Unique: Latex-Free Condoms
If you or your partner prefer or need a hypoallergenic, latex-free condom, you don’t have to give up your principles. Unique’s range is vegan, as well as odorless and transparent. Yes, they’re synthetic, but don’t forget that most natural condoms aren’t all that biodegradable either. As a result, they’re so thin that they require only one-third of the packaging, saving on waste. (Note: Many other latex-free condoms are vegan too, even if they’re not marketed as such, Trojan BareSkin for example.)
Lovability: 100% Natural Condoms
Finally, let’s talk trash. Even sustainable condoms and their packaging have to be disposed of properly – fortunately, Lovability condoms are designed with eco-friendly, practical packaging (they’re easy to open, and the condom is always right side up). They’re really cute, too! They are, of course, also free of all the unwanted chemicals and additives we discuss here.underlined orange are partially partner links: If you buy here, you actively support Utopia.org, because we will receive a small part of the sales proceeds. More info.
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