Female-internal condom

An internal (female) condom is:

  • 95% effective when you use the method correctly every time 
  • 79% effective when you don’t always use the method correctly

What is it?

An internal condom is a barrier method that a woman can use to help prevent pregnancy or sexually transmitted infections, including HIV.

How does it work?

An internal condom is a thin plastic pouch (similar looking to the external condom).

You put an internal condom carefully in your vagina and it will create a barrier that stops sperm from entering your womb during sex.


  • It can be put in before sex.
  • They are useful if you want to avoid taking hormones.
  • It can be used with other methods of contraception for safer sex and to prevent unplanned pregnancy and STIs. This is referred to as ‘Double Dutch’.
  • When used correctly, the internal condom helps to protect both partners from sexually transmitted infections, including HIV.


  • You need to practise inserting the internal condom so that it works properly.
  • You may find internal condoms difficult to find as they are not as widely available as male (external) condoms.