Condoms | Respect QLD

Safety Tips:

  • Only use your condoms—don’t use a condom a client brings because you don’t know how it’s been stored or if they have tampered with it.
  • Put the condom on the client yourself because they may not put it on properly.
  • Don’t leave your client alone in a room with your condoms in case they tamper with them.
  • Be careful not to accidentally tear the condom when opening the condom wrapper.
  • Use enough lube and apply it regularly when needed during sex.
  • Change condoms if you’re having sex for a long time or if you’re having hard-and-fast sex.
  • Have a mix of condoms including coloured, textured, latex, non-latex and different of sizes.  This way you have more options for you and your client.
  • Be careful not to get oil-based massage oils on a condom if you’re giving your client a massage before sex. Also be careful not to get any oil on their genitals because this will cause the condom to slip off or break. The cheapest water-based massage lotion is sorbolene. It has no smell and absorbs into the skin easily.
  • If your client touches the condom, take it off and put on a new one in case they have torn it or have dirty hands.
  • Be careful when using flavoured or warming condoms because they may cause thrush, blistering or urinary tract infections on you and your client.
  • Don’t use condoms with spermicidal lubricant added to them.
  • All condoms are intended for single use.
  • Read the condom package for instructions and what ingredients are in it. (I.e. if they contain a lubricant you are allergic to, or what is the condom made of).
  • Get into the habit of checking the use-by date of your condoms. They last for a long time but not forever.

There are many different types of condoms


Flared condom

This condom is good for a penis that has a thick shaft. If you use a large condom, then there’s a chance that the condom will slip off. This condom does not slip off too easily and is comfortable for the client.

The base and tip of the condom is an average-size (regular), but the shaft has an extra 2mm.

Tip: Even if you think you pick the right condom size for the client, their penis can also grow bigger or shrink during the sexual service. So it’s a good idea to check throughout the service that the condom you put on is still well-fitted. If you need to, change the condom to a better fitting one.

Mushroom, flared tip or ‘Super Fit’ condoms

These condoms are good for a penis that has a large head (tip of the penis) or a client that has a lot of cum.

Coloured condoms

Condoms come in all colours including glow-in-the-dark condoms and black. These are popular condoms to use for sex workers when they have their periods. Just in case they bleed through a sponge so the client cannot see the blood.

Flavoured condoms

Condoms come in many flavours including banana, spearmint, strawberry, chocolate, cola and more. For some people these condoms cause thrush and urinary tract infections, especially when using them regularly.

Climax control condoms

These condoms have a lubricant in them that can reduce a person’s  ability to cum by numbing or reducing sensitivity. They are marketed for people  who may have issues cumming too quickly, or for those who want longer sex. It’s your choice if you want to have sex for longer.

The lubricant can also contain warming ingredients that can cause thrush and reduce sensitivity in you. Think about if you can compromise on your own sensitivity ie. you may not notice as quickly if a condom breaks or becomes loose.

Textured condoms

Condoms come studded, ribbed and bulb-shaped. This can provide extra pleasure for both people having sex.

They are normally regular fitting size (54mm width).

Textured condoms are not recommended for use in anal sex, because they can irritate and tear the walls of the anus.

Warming condoms and ice condoms

These condoms have either a warming or cooling  lubricant added to them.

The lubricant can:

  • Irritate both the sex worker and the client
  • Cause thrush or urinary tract infections
  • Cause blistering

The ice lubricant gives a burning sensation that you may want to avoid.


By looking at the box or package of the condom, you can tell the size of the condom. The size is indicated:

  1. By the measurement in millimetres (mm), which is the diameter of the condom.
  2. By labelling them as small, regular or large.

Looking at the measurement in millimetres is more accurate because some condom brands don’t sell their sizes as small, regular or large.

E.g. Instead of selling it as small, they prefer to sell it as “ closer fitting”.

  • Small —49mm wide
  • Regular —54mm wide
  • Large —56mm-58mm width
  • Extra large — 64mm width

How can you tell if it’s too large?

If is is loose, baggy, falling or slipping off, you need a smaller condom

How can you tell if it’s too small?

If it looks stretched, the condom is trying to push through the tip, or there is a red mark where the base of the condom sits on the penis, it’s too small.

After practicing putting on condoms on clients of different size penises you’ll know what size condom to use just by looking at it.

There are many ways to put on a condom

How to put on a condom with your hands

Get out all the supplies you need. E.g. condom, lube, tissue, have a bin nearby.

Tear open the condom package using your fingers (not teeth). Be careful not to tear the condom itself.

Hold the condom so the opening is facing down, and the tip is facing up.

Tip: When opening the condom package, have the condom package’s front facing up. That way you know that the tip of the condom is already facing up and the opening is facing down, ready to be put on.

Hold the tip of the condom with your finger and thumb and place the opening of the condom on the tip of the penis.

While holding the tip of the condom with one hand, place the other hand on the bottom of the condom and start unrolling the condom towards the base of the penis.

Look at the penis to make sure the condom is rolled down, hasn’t ripped and fits the penis properly. If it doesn’t look right you could try a different size, or start again.

Putting a condom on with your mouth

You may prefer to put a condom on with their mouths because:

  • It is sexy and can be a turn-on for the client.
  • You don’t need to touch your client’s body at all to put the condom on.
  • It is gives you another chance to get a closer look at your client’s genitals and give them another STI check without them realising it.

Place the tip of the condom in your mouth with your lips, and have the rolled part touching and covering your lips. Do not use your teeth to hold the condom in your mouth.

Place the opening of the condom over the head of the penis. Make sure your whole mouth  is covered by the condom so your lips make no contact with the skin or precum. Suck the condom gently into your mouth as you push the condom down the shaft of the penis with your lips. Go as far as you can and then use your hands to do the rest. With practice you will be able to put the condom on using the suction of your mouth, without using your hands.

Caution: Keep the right amount of air at the tip of the condom. If there is too much air, there is a risk of a broken, slipped or leaking condom. If there is no air at all, there is no room for the cum to go into.

Disposing of the condom

When disposing of a condom keep in mind of the following things:

  • You want to take it off the client in a way that doesn’t drip semen (cum) all over the place.  
  • You want to try not to touch the condom with your bare hands – try using tissues.

We advise against tying a knot in the top of the condom. Just put it in the bin.

Avoid flushing the condom  down the toilet as you may block the  toilet, and it is bad for the environment

Using a condom as a cock ring

Condoms can be used as a cock ring:

  • It is designed to sit around the base of the penis and it tends to do less harm or bruise at the base of the penis.
  • It is easier to remove than metal, heavy rubber and leather cock rings.
  • They are sterile and thus less likely to cause infection than a metal cock-ring.

How to do this?

1. Pick the next size down from  the client’s condom size. This is usually tight enough.  For example, if your client uses a regular condom then use a small condom.

2. Cut a hole at the end of the smaller condom. This will look like a rubber band.

3. Pull it down over their dick and settle it at the base of their dick.

Note: Put the cock ring on before you put on the condom. Putting it on the outside of the condom will tear or break the condom.

4. When you have finished with the cock ring, pull it off the same way you pull the condom off and dispose of it.

What are condoms made out of?


Most condoms in Australia are made of latex. They are a good protection from sexually  transmitted infections. They prevent microorganisms like human immunodeficiency virus (HIV).

Synthetic/Polyisoprene latex condoms

These condoms are latex condoms that have had 90% of the proteins removed from the natural latex.  These proteins are responsible for allergic reactions in natural latex condoms. This makes them safer to use for people with latex allergies.

Synthetic non-latex condoms

Synthetic non-latex condoms are mainly made out of polyurethane but are also made of other synthetic materials like polyisoprene and resins. Polyurethane condoms differ from natural latex condoms because:

  • They conduct heat better
  • Aren’t sensitive to temperature and light are less allergenic than latex
  • Don’t have an odour

Spermicidal condom

Some latex condoms are lubricated with a spermicide called nonoxynol-9, which was once thought to offer extra protection from pregnancy. These are not recommended for sex work, the spermicide may make you more vulnerable to other STIs. Spermicidal condoms also have a shorter shelf life and may cause urinary tract infections. They are not recommended for sex workers to use.

Internal Condoms (also known as Femidoms or Female Condoms)

These are made out of polyurethane. Some people don’t like these condoms because they tend to feel scratchier or more rigid than natural latex condoms.

This type of condom is designed for:

  • Wearing internally – in your vagina or anus
  • Very large or very small penis
  • Differently-shaped penis

This condom is like a small bag with flexible rings at each end. It usually comes lubricated with water or silicone based lube. You put it inside your body or your client’s body before sex. The large ring (the opening) sits on the outside of the body. The small ring (closed end of the condom) is put inside either the vagina or the anus. The internal condom is wider than an   external condom. If the small ring is uncomfortable, take it out and try using it without the ring.

It has been shown that internal condoms are not as effective at stopping pregnancy as external  condoms. However, studies in the US in 2005 (1) showed they are better at preventing some sexual transmitted infections (STIs) because they cover more skin, ie the outer skin of the anus or vulva. This coverage reduces the chances of skin-to-skin viruses such as herpes.

Using them for the first time

The internal condom has a very different feel to standard condoms. It’s weird at first.

Before using it on your client, practice putting it inside of you and/or using it on someone you trust, so that you can focus on getting used to the feeling of them and the noise they make (depending on what they’re made of). They will get more comfortable once the penis, toy or fingers are inside the internal condom.

How to use the internal condom

1. Take the internal condom out of the package and unfold it. Make sure the small ring is sitting inside at the closed end of the condom.

2. With one hand, hold the opening of the condom, and with the other hand, pinch the small ring and stretch it out into a long skinny shape. This is to untangle the condom so it is not twisted.

3. To put the small ring into the body: Get your client or yourself to stand on one leg. Similar to the position of putting in a tampon or sponge. Or you can squat, bend back or forth or lie down.

4. Squeeze the small ring together with your finger/s and gently push it into the opening of the vagina or anus. Make sure that the rest of the internal condom is hanging outside of your body.

5. Place your fingers inside the condom and push up like you would with a sponge or tampon. Be careful not to put your nails through it. Do not put the outer ring (opening of the internal condom) into the body. The outer ring of the internal condom sits comfortably outside of the vagina or anus and should remain there during sex. You can now put you or your client’s penis or toy inside the internal condom.

6. When you are finished with it. Use tissue to cover the internal condom that is outside of the body. Twist the internal condom, pull it out of the body and throw it in the bin.

People may not like using internal condoms because:

  • They can be difficult to insert properly.
  • Some clients and sex workers find the small ring inside is uncomfortable. This is removable.
  • They are large and heavily lubricated, so they are very sticky and/or slippery.  Because it is slippery, this also makes it hard to slip the small ring inside.
  • It has a reputation for a rustling or crinkly noise that sounds like a plastic bag. The new brands use materials that are quiet.
  • They are more expensive compared to the traditional condoms.
  • It’s not wrapped in the package that is quick and easy to use like a traditional condom. These internal condoms are wrapped folded and not rolled up.

Internal condoms can also be used like a dam. When the internal condom is inside the body, use the remainder of the length of the condom to cover the outside of the body. To enhance the experience, add flavoured lube.

Internal condoms for anal sex

  1. Follow Step 1, 2 and 3 above. Note: Remove the small ring inside on step 2 for comfortable use.
  2. The person who is ‘giving’, inserts their penis or toy inside the condom into the anus. Leave the opening of the condoms outside of the body.
  3. The person who is ‘giving’, does not always need to be hard to use these condoms.

Note: It is optional for you to apply a little bit more lube for your comfort.

Reasons why condoms may break or slip off

  • Not using enough lube—it’s best to use silicone or water-based lubricants.
  • Using too much lube – be careful if you put a drop of lube inside the tip of the condom because too much can cause it to slip off.
  • Not changing condoms when having sex for a long period of time.
  • Changing positions too quickly.
  • Having rough sex.
  • Not holding on to the base of the condom when the client pulls out.
  • Not using a condom that fits properly.
  • Not putting the condom on properly.
  • Storing them at high temperature.
  • Exposing them to sunlight.
  • Using expired condoms.
  • Using oil based lubricants.
  • Using two condoms at the same time.
  • Piercing them accidentally. E.g. with Dental braces, teeth or fingernails, or accidentally tearing the condom when taking it out of the packet.
  • Not  pulling out straight after the client or you have cum. If their dick goes soft  the condom is more likely to slip out.

Where can you get condoms?

  • Respect Inc
  • Chemists
  • Service stations
  • Sexual health clinics
  • Supermarkets
  • NSPs (needle & syringe program)
  • Ordering online
  • Brothels


All material in this information sheet is provided for your information only and may not be construed as legal, medical or health advice or instruction.

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