Study Says Condoms Don't Diminish Sexual Pleasure. Oh, Really?

Why we're calling BS on a new study that swears using condoms feels just as good as going au natural

If you think sex doesn’t feel as good when you use a condom, you’re just plain wrong. And your boyfriend/husband is a big, fat liar if that’s the line he’s been feeding you. Course, that’s not my opinion. It’s all written down in a new study.

According to research in the Journal of Sexual Medicine, condoms do not in any way diminish sexual pleasure. Hmmm... why does this study sound like it’s founded more on a public service agenda than on any real scientific research?

But before I go calling bullshit, let’s take a look at the evidence. Researchers looked at an online questionnaire of women and men between the ages of 18 and 59. When they compared condom users to non-condom users, what they found was, most men and women rated sex as “highly arousing” and “pleasurable,” regardless of whether or not they routinely wrapped it up.

Oh, well, that proves it, right? No! All I see this proving is that people like sex. To really determine if sex feels as good with or without a condom, I think you need to take this study one step further: Ask those who don’t wear raincoats to put them on and vice versa, and then ask everyone involved if they noticed any difference in pleasure or arousal.

I get why studies like this are done -- to encourage people to practice safe sex, which we should all be doing. And when other wacky studies are released -- like the one that claims semen is an antidepressant because women who don’t use condoms are happier than those who do -- maybe women feel they need an arsenal of facts to back up their demands.

Of course, this makes the assumption that it’s the woman who wants to use condoms and the guy who doesn’t. But here’s the thing: I’m a woman who has never enjoyed using condoms. I can’t say that I don’t get off when I use them, but let’s just say I enjoy holding my husband’s hand a lot more when I’m not wearing mittens. Maybe it’s not the socially responsible thing to say, but at least it’s honest.

And, to me, honest communication is the cornerstone of a healthy sex life. You shouldn’t need a study like this to convince your partner to use a condom. Instead, let’s just call it like it is: Sex feels good. If it's a condom or no sex, then most of us are going to wrap it and enjoy the sex. And yes, for some people it feels different when you’re wearing a condom. But even if it does, well, a little less titillation in the sack is still worth the price of staying baby- and STD-free.


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