DIY: Make dental dams out of condoms

Does it seem like male condoms are kind of the standard in available safer sex supplies? What about instances where you want to have protected oral-vaginal sex or oral-anal sex?

Dental dams are a great way to provide enough protection during oral sex to reduce risk of transmission of sexually transmitted infections (STI), but are still thin enough to let a lot of sensation come through.

If you have access to a male condom but not a dental dam for oral sex—fear not! In just a few steps, you can very easily transform a male condom into a dental dam.

Here’s how:

1.  Start off with a condom.

The first step in is finding a non-lubricated or flavored lubricated condom (the taste of unflavored lube can be pretty unpleasant). Upon request, Campus Counseling and Wellness provides free safer sex supplies to residence halls, so in many cases, you may have condoms available to you through your residence hall. If not, you can always stop by Counseling and Wellness for free safer sex supplies. There are a variety of baskets and bowls with safer sex supplies around Campus Health Services. You can also call the Sexual Wellness Specialists (formerly CHECS) (919-966-3658) to request some for free.

2. Check the condom’s expiration date.

If it isn’t a good male condom, it won’t make a good dental dam! Check the expiration date to make sure the condom has not expired. You should also check the air bubble in the condom packet to make sure there aren’t any holes in the condom.

condom to dental dam - step 2
Step 2: Check to make sure the condom is in good shape and hasn’t expired.

3. Unroll the condom.

condom to dental dam - step 3
Step 3: Unroll the condom.

4. Using a pair of scissors, cut off the tip and rim of the condom.

condom to dental dam - step 4
Step 4: To convert the condom into a dental dam, cut off the tip of the condom.
condom to dental dam - step 4
Step 4: You can also cut the rim of the condom, as that will make it easier to work with.

5. Cut down the length of the condom.

condom to dental dam - step 5
Step 5: Cut down the length of the condom.

6. Use the dental dam.

You’ve now got a rectangular shaped dental dam you can use during oral sex. Now that you’ve got a dental dam, be sure to use it correctly. Be sure to only use a dental dam once, and to only use one side of the dental dam during oral-vaginal sex (don’t flip it over during oral sex).  Check out more tips on how to use a dental dam during oral sex here.

condom to dental dam - step 6
Step 6: Only use a dental dam once, and be sure not to flip it over during oral sex.

17 thoughts on “DIY: Make dental dams out of condoms

  1. Just Asking August 17, 2017 / 8:18 pm

    Why not use plastic food wrap and skip the yucky latex taste? Or there’s Jiftip now.


    • HealthyHeels November 17, 2017 / 9:02 am

      Great question. You can absolutely use plastic food wrap as a DIY alternative for oral sex. But those condom alternatives like Jiftip aren’t so good at preventing pregnancy or STI transmission. So, come get yourself free condoms at Campus Health!


      • Abbie January 2, 2018 / 8:18 am

        Plastic food wrap is not a safe alternative for a dental dam as it contains pores that may still lead to the transmission of disease?
        flavoured condoms would get rid of the latex taste, otherwise just buy a box of latex gloves to cut up, much cheaper.


        • HealthyHeels March 5, 2018 / 10:00 am

          Thanks for your note, Abbie. Dams made for sexual health are definitely the best option. Next up would be cutting a condom to make a flat sheet for a dental dam. A latex glove is also a good option. But if those aren’t available, food wrap can help prevent the transmission of disease. Anything is better than nothing, kind of thing. Newer types of wraps that are made for cooking and the microwave allow steam through, which wouldn’t be ideal for a dental dam. But there are still Saran Wraps that are made for food storage and those would be more ideal for dental dams.


  2. CHS June 18, 2015 / 6:22 am

    This was very informative information. I enjoyed reading the article!


  3. click here July 15, 2012 / 8:04 pm

    Spot on with this write-up, I absolutely feel this web site needs a lot more attention.

    I’ll probably be returning to read through more, thanks for the advice!


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