Category Archives: safe sex

What contraception do you use?

Interesting news… According to the Dublin Well Woman Clinic, more and more Irish women are opting for intrauterine devices (IUDs) and contraceptive implants instead of the pill. There is a smaller failure rate (because you don’t have to remember to take a pill every day) and over the long term, implants or IUDs are cheaper too.

I’ve always been slightly terrified of IUDs although I know that’s really foolish. Many of my friends swear by them, and they do have the benefit of being free of hormones – which can be a good thing. The first pill I ever tried messed gave me mood swings and killed my libido entirely. This obviously made it very effective and it is a testament to the wonder of love that my poor boyfriend didn’t dump me. His formerly even-tempered horny girlfriend turned into a tear-soaked frigid harridan. Luckily a change to a different brand made all the difference.

I’d be curious to hear from anyone that has switched to an implant or IUD. Was this a good choice? Any issues? Speak up!


Wow, I have been banging on for years about the importance of sex education and it seems I am talking to a brick wall. Results from Durex’s survey for National Condom Week reveal that just over half of Irish 18-year-olds will leave secondary school with any formal sexual health education at all. A third of all Irish people have received none.

So where are we learning about sex?

41 percent say their friends and peers enlightened them, 35 percent read up on the subject in books, 31 percent look to magazines and 27 per cent get it from television. No porn? I find that hard to believe.

Discussing their first experience of sex, 30 percent of us felt ready but only 11 percent felt well-informed. Hardly surprising. Although what is surprising is that we were more ready than our Australians (23 percent), Greeks (18 percent) and Japanese (5 percent) peers.

Even more surprising is that more than a third of us enjoyed our first sexual experience. Presumably there is a cross-over between those who feel ready and those who have a good time, although for many people their first experience of sex is a letdown. But things certainly improve with practice!

Rather worryingly, more than 80 per cent of Irish men and women risk STIs and unplanned pregnancy by not always using a condom with a new partner or someone who is not their main partner. Not clever, especially as the average number of sexual partners we have is steadily creeping up. In 2012, men averaged 17 sexual partners while women had 8.

Sex ed does not encourage sex

Half the reason certain parents object to sex education in school is a fear that this will encourage their little darlings to start shagging like rabbits. Anyone who has had sex education will know that this is patent nonsense and now a study published in the Journal of Adolescent Health has confirmed that sex ed actually delays sex – but so does abstinence instruction. Laura Duberstein Lindberg and Isaac Maddow-Zimet of the Guttmacher Institute in New York found that young adults who had received instruction on both abstinence and birth control tended to be older when they first had sex and they were more likely to have used condoms or other contraceptives during their first experience. Interestingly, if perhaps obviously, women who had only received abstinence-only education were significantly less likely to use a condom during their first experience of sex, most likely because abstinence education often erroneously claims that condoms do not work.

Barely there condoms

The biggest issue people have with condoms is that using them doesn’t feel as good as skin-to-skin contact. Which, admittedly is true… Although STIs are no picnic and it’s certainly better to be safe than sorry.

Durex has come up with a range of barely-there condoms which should help. Durex Deluxe and RealFeel allow for the transfer of body heat, meaning you should be hardly able to feel them. Neither are made with latex, so that’s good news for those who are allergic. The Deluxe is the thinnest condom ever made. The Fetherlite Ultra is latex, but only 50 microns thick, making it the thinnest latex condom ever. Plus it designed to be snug at the top of the penis.

I’d like a male perspectives on these, so if any of you have tried them, let’s hear what you think.

Half-price Condoms at Tesco

I do love a good deal, especially in these recessionary times so I was pleased to see that Tesco are selling condoms at half-price. As you well know, condoms are more expensive in Ireland than across most of Europe, but as Tesco themselves would say… every little helps. And as we are heading into the summer festival season, the timing couldn’t be better.

Durex’s Performa, Sensation, Tingle and Pleasuremax condoms normally costs €9.95 for 12, and are currently on sale for a very reasonable €4.97, and if you felt like trying out the Durex Play Vibration vibrating ring, this is also half price at just €4.24. Nice!

Stock up now!

Crystal Studded Bikini Wax: Yay or Nah?

Men of Ireland, I want your opinion!

Vajazzling is the trend for adding rhinestones, crystals or other blinging adornments to one’s Hollywood wax. What I want to know is, is this a good idea? More specifically, would this entice you to or put you off going down on your partner? Hair in the teeth is one thing…

Here’s an article to give you the idea.

Would you use the ex’s sex toys?

Oh how I laughed when I read this… Bossy is an Aussie agony aunt (alliteration!) who tells it like it is. Here she answers a man who can’t understand why his new girlfriend is not keen on using his ex’s sex toys, despite the fact that he washed them! Read the full story here. The comments are pretty funny.

Yeuch! There is no way in hell I’d ever use another woman’s vibrator. It’d be like wearing a stranger’s underwear, but worse…

Sharing sex toys is not a good idea in general. Even if you clean them, you can spread STIs that way. If you do, you have to use a condom over the toy. Even still I’d be a bit iffy about it…

Ever been too embarrassed to buy condoms?

According to an online survey, one in ten people have unsafe sex because they are too embarrassed to buy condoms. That’s awful but I sort of understand. Once, during my first sexual relationship, the boyfriend and I went into a chemist to pick up the necessary, but the old battleaxe behind the counter chased us out saying they didn’t stock “that filth”…

For years I was a little bit embarrassed about buying them myself, delegating it to whomever I was sleeping with, as a “man’s job” but on the occasions I did, I felt the need to buy all sorts of other things in the chemist, such as lipstick and hair pins, so that they wouldn’t think I’d stopped in just to get condoms. Silly I know…

Anyone have any similar tales?

Pope Condom anyone?

Oh dear… If you’re a good practicing Catholic you won’t approve of this (or anything else on this blog for that matter), but some crafty joker has put the pope on a condom packet . You have to admit it’s kinda funny… Although this is not the face I’d like staring up at me during a delicate moment…