Free Condoms

If you are aged between 15 – 24, you can get free condoms across the Island. All you need to do is get a card (called the C-Card) which you keep and show at a range of places and the condoms are yours . It's that simple!

How do I get C-Card?

It's free to sign up for a C-Card and you can get one from a range of places across the Island. Just pop into your local distribution point, this includes Pharmacies, GP's, the College, the Foyer in Ryde and  the Sexual Health Clinic at St Mary's - click here to find the nearest place to you. Once you're there, they will run through a few things with you and you will be asked for your date of birth and postcode. Don't worry, everything is completely confidential and we won't contact you about anything. We only require your postcode so we can keep track on how many cards are being used across the Island. You will then be given your own unique C-Card which is the same size as a credit card and will have your postcode and the date your card was issued.

How does the C-Card work?

Once you have been given your C-Card you will be given a selection of condoms and some lube. Then, every time you need more, all you have to do is go to one of the locations across the Island,  show your card, and you'll get the free condoms. It would be really useful if you could let us know which ones suit you best as there are lots of sizes and varieties.

Remember gay or straight you need to use a condom!

What are the benefits of using a condom?

STIs: Condoms are a really good form of contraception because they help protect against most STIs including HIV and Chlamydia. Therefore whenever you have sex , whether anal, oral or vaginal, it is very important to make sure you're using one.

Sometimes condoms are not 100% effective. For example, if they're not used properly they can fall off or split.  Handcreams, vaseline, lipstick and oils can damage and break condoms, meaning you are not guaranteed to be protected from STIs and Pregnancy.

Pregnancy: We strongly suggest that you combine using a condom with another form of contraception such as the implant, coil, injection or contraceptive pill. This will give you peace of mind and limits the risk of pregnancy. These other forms of contraception are also available for free, no matter what your age, from your local doctors surgery or the Sexual Health Clinic at St Mary's Hospital, Newport. 

These additional forms of contraception will not protect you against STIs if you are not using a condom as well. 

The best advice is to always use a condom  in conjunction with another form of contraception and get tested regularly and with every new partner.

What should I do if the condom has split?

If the condom has split, fallen off, or you have only used it partially during sex then you are at risk:

  • Pregnancy - it's really important to think about emergency contraception
  • You may also be at risk of STIs. It's really important that you get tested.

 

  • Keep your condoms in a cool, dark place. Heat can damage them.
  • Condoms don't last forever. Check the use-by date.
  • Keep your condoms handy if there's a chance you're going to have sex - Always carry a spare
  • Sperm comes out way before a man comes, so put a condom on before you get going. Don't leave it till the last minute.
  • Never use a condom more than once.
  • Never wear two condoms at the same time as it may cause the condoms to come off.
  • Always dispose of your condoms carefully wrapped in paper in a bin. Never put them down the toilet as they can cause a blockage and never throw them away in the street or open spaces.
  • 'Gel charging' (putting a little extra lubricant onto the head of the penis before you roll the condom on) can feel extra good!

Where to get help