3:46 pm - 06/18/2007


I'm on HBC, but my fiance and I have decided we'd like to have a little extra reassurance at the end of every month that there are no babies growing in my belly, and I suggested spermicide.

someone here had recommended it to me, and the more I've thought about it, the better it sounds.

so now I'm looking for advice.

I tend to have a sensitive vagina so I don't want anything that might potentially burn.

I'm looking for something cheap, also. $10 or less would be great, $5 or less would be even better!

any brand suggestions and the like would be awesome! thanks girls!
teddybear115 18th-Jun-2007 07:50 pm (UTC)
I am sensitive and I am allergic to it. I know alot of girls are. Feel free to try it but I wouldnt invest alot of money in it until you figure out if you are allergic or not. (you'll know with one use and should be within 5 minutes of one use if your anything like me)
loveofdaisies 18th-Jun-2007 07:51 pm (UTC)
oh god. what kind of symptoms do you have if you're allergic to it?
frkyjenn 18th-Jun-2007 07:59 pm (UTC)
Here is a list of pros and cons:

The Pros:

* Spermicides are usually affordable.
* They are easy to use.
* They can serve as both lubricant and contraceptive method
* They are available over the counter in any drug store

The Cons:

* They are not very effective if used alone
* Spermicides must be applied correctly, immediately before each sexual relationship, which can negatively affect the romantic mood…
* Except for the film spermicide, the others can be messy.
* Some spermicides taste bad and can affect the pleasure of oral sex. Try different brands to find one that you and your partner like.
* Some spermicides can create minor numbness.
* Spermicides can cause allergic reactions or rashes on the inside of the vagina or at the extremity of the penis. In the event of an intense reaction, you should stop using them.
* Spermicides can cause urinary tract infections.
* A pre-existing vaginal infection can reduce the effectiveness of the product.


Because of the chemicals, there is a risk of toxic shock syndrome--a generalized blood infection--with spermicides.
loveofdaisies 18th-Jun-2007 08:03 pm (UTC)
hahahaha oh wow. suddenly I am rethinking this decision. the cons really really outweigh the pros!
teddybear115 18th-Jun-2007 08:24 pm (UTC)
I am allergic to spermicide and latex. Both together causes fire in the crotch literally. No amount of good sex can make it worth it. Spermicide is the worst of the two because even after sex ends it still burns since its still in you. Condoms, if the sex is good, I can deal with since after he pulls out the pain/discomfort decreases drastically.

FYI: I have an IUD so im free from pregnancy and am not currently sexually active so I am safe from STI's/STD's.
loveofdaisies 18th-Jun-2007 08:25 pm (UTC)
yeah that sounds very similar to what happens to me when I use warming lube. definitely not going down the spermicide road now. thank you!!
ieatsoniclife 18th-Jun-2007 08:00 pm (UTC)
For the most part, spermicide is extermely irritating to the vagina (or elsewhere). Personally, I'm pretty sensitive and wouldn't put it anywhere near my cunt for fear of her screaming in pain.
loveofdaisies 18th-Jun-2007 08:04 pm (UTC)
see, I have problems with warming lube. I'm afraid I'd have the same reactions. =\ maybe I won't get any after all.
neaira 18th-Jun-2007 08:02 pm (UTC)
Spermicide and I do not get along. :/ Itching, burning, sores... not fun.
loveofdaisies 18th-Jun-2007 08:04 pm (UTC)
oh no, really? I am definitely rethinking my decision.
kaelstra 18th-Jun-2007 08:09 pm (UTC)
Spermicide irritates a LOT of women, and I'd say especially so since you've got a sensitive vagina. I know I can't use the stuff without it burning like all holy hell for a long time afterwards.

If you react badly to the warming lube, I would definitely not suggest spermicide, as it's actually much harsher for your vagina than lube.

The reason I didn't like spermicides is because, on top of the semen left behind, they are extremely messy, and I hated feeling goopy for awhile afterwards. Beyond that, it always burned my vag horribly for hours, sometimes a day or two after sex. It made it a real buzzkill.

What kind of HBC are you on? I'm sure if you're taking it properly, your rate of failure is next to nothing.
loveofdaisies 18th-Jun-2007 08:14 pm (UTC)
okay, you've definitely just talked me out of it. I didn't realize it caused problems for so many women! and warming lube burns me for HOURS (sometimes only his semen can make me burn) so I think that spermicide is not for me.

I'm on lo-ovral. I pretty much completely trust it (except for the occasional freakout), but my fiance is the one who gets nervous around the time we're waiting for my period to come. I thought we could do something else to reassure him, but I think that spermicide is not the answer.

I know that condoms would be, but he and condoms are like mortal enemies, lol.

oh well, I'll just reassure him again that my birth control is working just fine by itself!
emilymorgan 18th-Jun-2007 11:40 pm (UTC)
Diaphragm, maybe?
scien 18th-Jun-2007 11:56 pm (UTC)
They're used with spermicide.

OP - seriously, your options for a secondary method of birth control when you don't want either barrier methods or potentially burny chemicals are pretty limited. You and your boyfriend have been nervous about pregnancy for a long time now, and you're on the pill and very diligent about it.

I don't know what problems he had with condoms, but I would suggest any or all of:
1) trying to sort those out (there are lots of kinds of condoms out there)
2) you both reading the literature on how well the pill works - him more than you, probably, if it's him making you nervous all the time!
3) if neither of the above work, not doing sex acts that carry a risk of pregnancy.
loveofdaisies 19th-Jun-2007 12:02 am (UTC)
I'm really not that nervous about the pill. I just thought it might be a good idea to have a secondary method, just in case. I trust the HBC, he does too. we just thought it might be nice to have something else for reassurance.

we've wasted probably $100 on different kinds of condoms trying to get them to work for him, they don't.

your third suggestion kind of peeves me because I really wasn't asking advice on whether or not we should engage in sexual acts. I was simply asking for spermicide suggestions. I love this community but I get really tired of hearing that, I feel like I can't come here any more with questions without a comment like that coming up somewhere along the way.
scien 19th-Jun-2007 12:37 am (UTC)
Having a secondary method is something I heartily recommend - it's useful to have one already organised if you forget a pill or similar. I was not in any way trying to stop you from finding and using one, I was genuinely trying to be helpful, as it seems that fear of pregnancy is causing you both some stress.
kaelstra 19th-Jun-2007 12:49 am (UTC)
I don't think Sweetrush was intending to offend, just pointing out your options since you both (mainly your guy) seem to not actually trust the birth control fully, and wanted a backup method. Your options are kinda limited, and since pregnancy seems to be the factor you are both worried about, one of the options is, indeed, to stop engaging in those specific acts of sex that have a risk of pregnancy. It's not meant to offend, she's simply pointing it out as an option, since barrier methods are mostly ruled out for you guys.

Condoms are ruled out, he can't use them. Spermicides are highly irritating for most women, and messy, so they're mostly out it seems. Diaphrams use spermicides, so that's out too. Female condoms maybe? There really aren't any other backup methods to be had, unfortunately, if he doesn't like/can't use condoms. :/
archangelbeth 19th-Jun-2007 12:55 am (UTC)
There's some non-american research that suggests diaphragms don't have to have spermicide. I was startled, too! It's on VP... let's see if I can find it... Here's the thread.
mellyjc 9th-Oct-2007 06:11 am (UTC)
Thank you greatly.
emilymorgan 19th-Jun-2007 01:28 am (UTC)
Oh, sorry, didn't know that.
scien 19th-Jun-2007 01:32 am (UTC)
Yeah, somehow they forget to mention it in sex ed a lot. You don't need to use as much of it and it's a bit more effective, but you definitely need to use it. Unfortunately :) it would be much cooler if you didn't have to!
kaelstra 19th-Jun-2007 12:44 am (UTC)
As a note about warming lube, we used some with a few of our dildos one night, and despite the fact we have cleaned them several times with soap, and boiled them for quite a bit, those particular toys STILL burn us to use. It's gotten to the point we're getting new ones and throwing those ones out. That warming lube is the devil.

My guy and I don't like condoms either (my vagina tends to pull them off guys), so we just rely on my birth control, the Nuvaring, and I trust it fine. (Although in the ring's case, there's less room for error than your pills).

If you want to reassure him, maybe make him part of your pill-taking process? Make it his job to remind you every day to take your pill, and he can watch you take it to reassure himself it's being taken every day at the same time, so it should be perfectly used. :) Have him read up on the information that comes with your pill packets each month, and he can see the statistics about how effective your pills are.
loveofdaisies 19th-Jun-2007 04:18 pm (UTC)
That warming lube is the devil.

it is!! that's what I always say, LOL

Make it his job to remind you every day to take your pill, and he can watch you take it to reassure himself it's being taken every day at the same time, so it should be perfectly used. :)

that's a good idea! he already does that sometimes anyway, and a lot of times he's around when I take mine (♥ the alarm on my phone) but I will definitely try to incorporate him more.

Have him read up on the information that comes with your pill packets each month, and he can see the statistics about how effective your pills are.

ooh, that's a good idea too. thanks!
nebulosity 18th-Jun-2007 08:29 pm (UTC)
A lot of people commenting on your entry complain of an allergic reaction to spermicide, so I thought I'd pipe in and say that I'm one of those people that's entirely NOT allergic to spermicide. Since no brand of spermicide bothers me, I just let my husband choose the brand and buy it at the store, otherwise I'd give you a recommendation.

Good luck!
loveofdaisies 18th-Jun-2007 08:43 pm (UTC)
haha well it's definitely good to hear from the other end of the spectrum. do you tend to be sensitive to lubes or anything like that?

thanks so much!
nebulosity 19th-Jun-2007 12:01 am (UTC)
I've never had a problem with any kind of lube. The only lube that I don't *prefer* is the warming stuff. Feels kinda weird in my opinion, but a lot of people like it. :)
oboegoddess 18th-Jun-2007 08:36 pm (UTC)
The first and last time I used a spermicidal condom, my vagina felt like it was on fire and I developed a yeast infection and UTI at the same time.

I definitely do not recommend chemical spermicides (nonoxyl-9), but I've heard that there are natural spermicides that are gentler if you are looking for some back up. I seem to recall hearing about people using lemon and neem oil, but I don't have any experience with those.
loveofdaisies 18th-Jun-2007 08:42 pm (UTC)
omg!!! how horrible!

thanks for the other suggestions, I might take them into consideration. overall, though, I'm pretty much thinking I'm going to stay away from spermicides completely.
itzchristay 18th-Jun-2007 08:56 pm (UTC)
You know what's weird? I'm not allergic to spermicide but my boyfriend is. We've used condoms with spermicide on them and I was fine but he was almost in tears it burned him so much. It took us a couple of times to realize that it was the spermicide that was making his penis burn and be very red and sore afterwards. So no more anything with spermicide in it for us.
loveofdaisies 18th-Jun-2007 09:02 pm (UTC)
oh gosh, really?

that kind of reminds me of mine, sometimes after sex his penis will get really dry and the dryness sometimes turns into sores. I almost wonder if our lube or something is causing that (since we're sti/std-free). that definitely makes me wonder now!
cloudshapes 18th-Jun-2007 09:22 pm (UTC)
if you are using your HBC correctly, you really shouldn't have a need for addition protection at any point in your cycle. i understand the psychlogical need for reassurance though. :) i've never used spermicide myself other than condoms that had it added, and most condoms irritate me. i will tell you that after reading these comments i definitely do not want to ever have to use spermicide. :P
cloudshapes 18th-Jun-2007 09:22 pm (UTC)
loveofdaisies 18th-Jun-2007 09:25 pm (UTC)
yes. I use it almost perfectly (no more than 10-15 minutes variability when taking it) so I think I'll just use it as our form of protection.

I'm with you, I don't want to ever use it either!
loonylupinlover 18th-Jun-2007 09:23 pm (UTC)
I've never tried spermicide, but my best friend's favorite condom (and her fiance's favorite as well) was a Trojan brand with spermicide, so I'm guessing it didn't irritate either of them. I would say that even though it sounds scary, it's still worth trying it out one time... who knows, your vagina may be totally fine with it! And you wouldn't want to miss out on a great back-up method just because it does irritate many women. But since it does sound like using a spermicidal foam or jelly leaves more of it inside you, you might try using a spermicidal condom first (assuming neither of you has a latex allergy), since it seems like if it did burn you, you could just remove the condom and presumably experience relief quicker than if there was foam coating the inside of your vagina for the next day or so.
loveofdaisies 18th-Jun-2007 09:26 pm (UTC)
true. he doesn't get along with condoms, though, so I'm not sure that would work well. you're right though, I probably shouldn't draw a conclusion till I try it for myself, still, these comments have scared me a bit!
loonylupinlover 18th-Jun-2007 11:26 pm (UTC)
Oh, it wouldn't have to be a permanent thing, condoms with spermicide -- just suggesting that you try it out once with a spermicidal condom, that way you can see if it irritates you or not. If not, then you can move up to trying foam or something and get rid of the condom (which would just be a one-time trial run to see if your vagina can handle a small amount of spermicide). If it does burn, though, then it's easier to remove a condom from your vagina than it is to remove stuff coating your insides. So yeah, the condom would just be a trail run sort of thing.
loveofdaisies 18th-Jun-2007 11:58 pm (UTC)
ooooooooh!! I gotcha! that's a pretty good idea actually, yes!!
scien 19th-Jun-2007 12:02 am (UTC)
Condoms with spermicide are a bit of a marketing gimmick. They don't actually contain enough spermicide to make a difference if the condom should break. They reassure people that they're safe, which is good I guess, but it's only really the illusion of using two methods at once, not the reality.

I've also heard of people feeling the effects of the spermicidal condoms quite a while later - some of the lube stays inside you if you've been having sex using it! For a trial run I would probably be inclined to just use a small amount of the brand of spermicide you plan to use properly (with, obviously, another method of contraception) and see what happens. But I like limiting all unecessary factors like that, hehe.
archangelbeth 18th-Jun-2007 09:31 pm (UTC)
I've had no trouble with spermicides (I'm reasonably fond of the Today Sponge), but neither have I had trouble with warming lube. I'd suggest picking up a cheap foam -- in the US, all spermicides are nonoxyl-9 -- and testing it somewhere you can wash it away easily if it burns.
loveofdaisies 18th-Jun-2007 09:43 pm (UTC)
that's true, I might think about trying that. thanks!
rockstarbob 18th-Jun-2007 10:28 pm (UTC)
Hi there! Just passing through to mention that you might find this section of our Vulvapedia entry on non-hormonal birth control handy. :)
brague 19th-Jun-2007 12:28 am (UTC)
If you're sensitive, spermicide may not be the best choice. I ended up with a yeastie last time that was very persistent and lasted 3 weeks. Not cool.
loveofdaisies 19th-Jun-2007 02:50 am (UTC)
ewww not cool at all!
umyeaok 19th-Jun-2007 12:46 am (UTC)
i went to target and i was looking in their.. feminine care/sexual needs isle...
I don't know about any other targets, but the one by me really increased it's selection of different lubes, condoms, and other products.
They had these things called vaginal contraceptive films.
they were like.. 16 for 7 bucks. you fold them in 4ths and stick them up there. they dissolve and volia! spermicide.

don't know if that is something you'd be interested in or not
loveofdaisies 19th-Jun-2007 04:15 pm (UTC)
oooh interesting!! I will check that out when I'm at target today, thanks!
mvtce 19th-Jun-2007 02:40 am (UTC)
You're probably not interested at this point, but I thought I'd throw this out there anyway:

While I was researching all kinds of birth control methods before getting my IUD, I found the Protectaid sponge. Similar to the Today sponge, except it has 3 spermicides in lower concentrations making it less likely to cause irritation, but their combined power is just as effective. I don't think it's available in the US yet, and they're kind of expensive (which is why I never tried them), but they're available online from Canadian drugstores.

*shrug* It's another option, anyway.
fionaeliza93 spermicide, nonoxynol-9, and HIV16th-Jun-2012 06:59 pm (UTC)
In the USA (I've also done some searches in the UK and Canada) spermicide usually contains nonoxynol-9. A lot of people find that this is usually what causes the allergic reaction. Originally they thought that it also helped to prevent the spread of HIV/other STDs, as it does tend to kill the spreading diseases. However, they have also found out that it can partially destroy the protective lining of the vagina, thus PROMOTING the transmission!
I have also found three other types, but I can't find two of them for sale (US, UK, or Canada), and the other is ridiculously expensive. Oxtoxynol-9 and benzalkonium chloride are the two I can't find, and contragel is the third, and is supposedly natural.
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