Editor’s Note: This post has been updated as of October 2016. Lelo’s HEX condoms can be purchased online or at Target brick and mortar stores.
For the first time since the 1950s, when the reservoir tip was added, the condom is getting a significant upgrade. The addition of ribs, dots, flavors and colors were not significant — or at least that’s what “intimate lifestyle product” brand Lelo is saying. The Swedish company unveiled their brand-new HEX condoms, which, for the first time, have a structure inspired by graphene. They claim it’s “the world’s strongest and thinnest material.”
The condoms are still made of latex, like the Trojans or LifeStyles you’re familiar with. The structure, however, looks quite different. Each condom has a honeycomb-like lattice, or a hexagonal-shaped web, which, according to Lelo, is engineered to “address the three core issues that people have with condoms: they reduce pleasure, they slip too easily and break too frequently.” That’s right, the HEX’s graphene structure promises to be stronger (graphene is basically impermeable to everything but water), fit tighter and feel better than any other latex condom.
The announcement comes as a bit of a surprise, as innovation in the condom industry has stalled over the past few years. In 2013, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation granted 11 finalists $100,000 to build the next generation of condom — basically they had to be comfortable enough that people had to want to wear them. The winning finalist, Apex Medical Technologies, still hasn’t released a market-ready finished product.
Lelo wasn’t on that list of finalists, but that hasn’t stopped them from taking on the condom industry. Their new HEX condoms are competitively priced at $34.90 for a pack of 36, and you can buy them on Lelo’s website (or at Target).
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