Free condoms are passed out in every residence hall office on campus, but are they protecting students from the risks of sexual activity?

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) says, “It’s most important to choose latex condoms that say ‘disease prevention’ [referring to sexually transmitted diseases] on the package. Other features are a matter of personal choice.”

Condoms are offered in every residence hall on campus. KENNETH HO/THE STATESMAN
Condoms are offered in every residence hall on campus. KENNETH HO/THE STATESMAN

Healthwise, most condoms are created equal. However, there are many options on the shelves–lubricated, ultra thin, ribbed, for her pleasure, for his pleasure.

“My favorite condoms have always been Crown,” Ryan Heslin, a junior, said.

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The manufacturer of Crown Condoms, Okamoto, markets its product as “the closest thing to nothing at all” and “Skinless Skin.”

“The Journal of Sexual Medicine” published a study of 2,000 men who detailed their sexual acts and reported that sexual pleasure was increased when the men were satisfied with how their condom felt.

The best condoms according to “Men’s Health Magazine’s” article “The 4 Best-Feeling Condoms” are: the Trojan Thintensity, LifeStyles SKYN, Durex Extra Sensitive Condom and the Durex BARE Latex.

These condoms feature heightened sensitivity which separates them from the competition.

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Although Crown Condoms did not place in “Men’s Health Magazine’s” list, the brand did place on a different “best” list. Condom Depot, an online sex goodies retailer, rated Crown Skinless Condoms number one via user panels for seven years in a row.

Crown describes this particular line as “thin, yet strong and slightly larger than average.”

“I prefer Trojan condoms. My favorite are Magnums because the material is better and it makes it feel more like the real thing. They have the best lube on them too,” said Mianna Questelles, a sophomore in the social work program.

Trojan describes its Magnum Lubricated Condoms as “larger than standard for extra comfort with silky smooth lubricant for comfort and sensitivity.”

Magnum condoms can also be found for free at Stony Brook. These particular condoms cost about $1.13 per condom from a store, while LifeStyles Colors Condoms are about 54 cents per condom.

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Unfortunately for Heslin, Crown brand condoms have not yet made their way into our campus selection.

He can expect to dish out about 83 cents per condom in the drugstore for Skinless Skin condoms.

In comparison, Trojan’s Thintensity retails at about 79 cents per condom; LifeStyles’ SKYN at $1.16; Durex Extra Sensitive comes in at about $1 each and Durex BARE at 91 cents per condom.

“Good” condoms are an investment so the free condoms in residence halls may look better and less expensive.

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