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The Best Way to Wrap Your Package for the Holidays

Condom Depot picked the year's best condom. But should we believe them?

By Stephanie Bradford, Illustrations By George Eckart

December 20, 2014

Whether you’re indulging in post-party fa la la-ing, fulfilling your girlfriend’s fantasy about frolicking in a winter wonderland, or just hoping to jingle some bells if the opportunity presents, nothing says "happy holidays" like great sex.

And nothing prevents gifts that keep on giving (like STDs and unintended pregnancies) like condoms.

Can you have great sex and use a condom? Of course you can, as long as you pick the best condom.

That’s where CondomDepot.com, 250 anonymous volunteers, and two guys who know the author of this article come in.

Each year, for the past 15 years, Condom Depot has released a list of "The World’s Best Condoms." This year’s winners—10 in all, selected from a pool of 40 of their top-selling, best-reviewed condoms—were sent out to 250 people, part of Depot’s Official Condom Testing Pool.

It’s true. Just like there are grown people who dress up like elves to keep the magic of Christmas alive in malls across America, there are official condom testers who do the hard work of trying out 40 individual kinds of condoms, and rating them, so that others can just enjoy magical moments—or hours, depending on endurance.

What exactly are these brave people, those willing to boink for the cause, testing for?

According to Kara Spitzkeit, Content Director and Creator at Go Live, Inc. (Condom Depot’s official, more discrete company name), the testers are looking for two things: comfort and durability.

Comfort includes everything from thickness to heat transfer to shape and size. Fit, Spitzkeit says, is especially important, as many people "don’t know they’re wearing the wrong condom size."

Why does size matter? Because the job of a condom is to stay in place, no matter the position or pace. "Every day (we) get calls about condoms lost inside the other person." Spitzkeit says.

A too-tight condom can result in latex degradation, which leads to breakage, which leads to the traditional holiday panic attack about the consequences of stuff leaking out of a torn stocking.

Which brings up lubricant. The heat and friction that make sex so much fun are also the two factors most likely to cause compromised condoms. Spitzkeit likens un-lubbed condoms to tires that get dry rot, and crack, from sitting out in the sun.

What you want is a slick, smooth situation. Think sleds gliding over fresh, damp snow, not cars driving through the rocky desert where you’re likely to experience a blow out.

So, armed with lube and 40 condoms of various shapes and sizes, what did the 250 people (who range from college students to swingers at a club in Florida to couples of all shapes and sexual orientations) determine was THE BEST CONDOM?

Crown Skinless Skin.

This isn’t, by the way, the first time Crown has been crowned the best. Crown has won 15 years in a row.

In fact, Crown has been a top seller "from the get go" says Spitzkeit. "I’ve used 'em, I like em." In 2014, Condom Depot has sold 2,208,793 Crown Skinless Skin condoms.

Compare that to the 1,073 Kameleon Tri-Colored condoms sold, and you’ll know which brand to pick as a last-minute holiday gift.

Particularly if you know a porn star—Crown is the adult film industry’s standard condom.

Why Crown? "A snugger fit with more stretch seems to be where it’s at," Spitzkeit says.

Crown fits a variety of people, unlike two time top-ten winner Iron Grip, which has a smaller width and is perfect for more petite penises.

Crown is made of Sheerlon Latex, so it feels more like skin than, say, a balloon. It’s pink, nearly odorless, and really, really stretchy.

How stretchy? In the spirit of true investigative journalism, we chose to ignore the numerous five-star rave reviews on Depot’s website and ordered Crown Skinless Skin condoms to conduct our own research.

(Ordered because visiting one drug store next to a college campus, and calling four adult stores in two states, revealed that Crown may be popular, but they aren’t easy to find.)

A few days later, an innocuous and small brown box arrived in the mail, just as promised, looking like any other ordered-online present.

Three shiny, blue, wrappered condoms—reminiscent of Hanukah chocolates—were then distributed. One to a guy friend who volunteered to be a tester in response to a Facebook post, one to a guy friend who didn’t exactly volunteer, but is kinda obligated to the author, and one to the author herself.

The results?

Obligated Guy: "It’s pink. It’s really thin. I liked it going on but it didn’t feel quite right once I was inside her. I think I like my regular brand (Durex Extra Sensitive, a ten time winner) better. It’s true that there’s almost no smell."

Volunteer Guy: "I’m really, really sorry but I haven’t been able to test the condom yet. It’s the holiday stress. We’re so busy. When’s your deadline?"

The author took the stretch test to her own personal limit. Pulling the condom over her hand, she managed to stretch it all the way down her forearm, while splaying her fingers, before it burst and half of it flew off and got stuck on the wall.

Why the mixed bag of results?

Well, first, condom choice is a personal thing. Everyone’s parts and preferences are different, and once a tradition is established—like using Durex or putting brandy instead of rum in your eggnog—it’s comfortable to stick with it.

Second, all three testers were in the wrong demographic.  55 percent of the condoms sold by Condom Depot go to people between the ages of 18 and 25, while 35 percent to those over age 50. Women only account for 25 percent of the sales.

Worst of all, both men are in committed, monogamous relationships, so neither has to use condoms as frequently as they did in their wilder days. And, let’s face it, condoms aren’t, no matter how awesome, the same as skin-to-skin.

But, if you’re one of the thousands of people who needs to play safe and wrap up Mr. Happy before you jump into the festivities, you can still have fun.

Condom Depot has put together a World’s Best Condoms Tin. It has 30 condoms (three of each of the top ten from this year) and lube.

If you really want to get your sleigh bells ring-ting-tingling, the tin also includes two Vibrating Johnnys.

Yep, a vibrating cock ring. Pretty much guaranteed to get your lord a leaping and your lady dancing, even with a condom on.

For more condom choices, check out our detailed guide on Which Condom You Should Buy.

We've also got the 4 Best-Feeling Condoms, which have been Men's Health - tested and woman approved.

Here is a link to the original article.

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