Condoms are the most widely used contraceptive in the world and are used by both men and women. They are relatively inexpensive and easy to obtain. However, condoms are intended for one-time use only and have a finite shelf life due to their material. Therefore, many people wonder how long condoms last. In this article, you'll learn all about the shelf life of condoms.
How long do condoms last?
Condoms usually only last for a limited time. Most condoms have a shelf life of two to five years if they are stored unused and in a cool, dry place. The shelf life depends on both the material used and the lubricant wasted. Our Mister Size condoms have a shelf life of 5 years from production. We, as the manufacturer, indicate these 5 years on the packaging in the form of an expiration date, which states how long the condom can be kept. It's important to keep this date in mind because a condom may not be safe after the expiration date and may, for example, break during use. If you still have condoms that are past their expiration date, you should discard it immediately and use a new condom. Also, you should always make sure that the condom is not damaged or has been stored incorrectly before you use it. You should also dispose of a damaged or incorrectly stored condom and not use it for sexual intercourse.
How can I tell that a condom is no longer durable?
The answer is actually quite simple: You will find the best-before date on the packaging and normally on each individual condom. If they were stored correctly, you can use the condom without hesitation before the expiration date, but not after. However, it always depends on how they are stored. Under optimal conditions, condoms can be stored for up to 5 years, as mentioned above. However, it should be remembered that the shelf life of condoms decreases with time. Therefore, it is advisable not to wait too long before using them. Also, it is important to read the packaging and instructions carefully to make sure you are using the product correctly and storing it properly.
What happens if I use an expired condom?
Condoms that are past their expiration date should never be used during sex, because expired condoms can break much more easily or are already porous. They offer neither reliable protection against sexually transmitted diseases nor against unwanted pregnancies. So please replace expired condoms immediately.
Tip: You don't have to throw away expired condoms in every case, but you should no longer use them during sex. What is still possible, however, is to use them to descale your faucet, for example. Just fill the condom carefully with some vinegar and then put the condom over your faucet, so that the vinegar can soak the spout of your faucet. Leave the condom with the vinegar on the faucet for a few hours, such as overnight. After that, you can rinse it with clean water and it's done decalcifying.
How can I make sure that my condoms last a long time?
Most condoms are made of natural rubber latex and this material is relatively sturdy. However, condoms can become porous over time and lose their effectiveness. To prevent this from happening before the expiration date, condoms should always be stored in a cool, dark and dry place. Cold is less harmful to condoms than extreme heat. You can find out everything about how condoms tolerate different temperatures here.
After use, the condom should be disposed of immediately.
Condoms are basically intended for single use and should be disposed of immediately after use. If you have opened the seal of a condom and then not used the condom, this is also a reason not to use it later. The condom is exposed to light when the package is opened and can also dry out. Damaged or opened seals should also be disposed of.
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