At this point, we’re not going to tell our readers for the hundredth time that they need to wear condoms to prevent STIs and pregnancy– they know by now (or should). We do have a different reminder for our sexually active readers: make sure the condom fits.

Improperly fitting condoms can cause discomfort at best, and unplanned pregnancy or STIs at worst. If a condom is too big or too small, it can rip or fall off.

The Kinsey Institute(opens in a new tab) conducted a study in 2015 of 18-24 year-old heterosexual men who had penile-vaginal intercourse and found that:

  • 75% of the 295 participants experienced erection loss while applying the condom.
  • 78% experienced erection loss while having sex with the condom on.
  • 52% experienced both of the above erection issues during condom use.

How can we fix these numbers? Well, there are a wide range of condoms available, AND a little lube doesn’t hurt (it increases your pleasure and decreases dryness and irritation). But most importantly, it’s great to know your size.

According to Healthline(opens in a new tab), here’s the best way to measure your penis. It needs to be erect, because if you measure it when it’s flaccid it will only be measured at its smallest. This will lead to a smaller condom size and discomfort.

For length:
  • Place either a ruler or measuring tape at the base of your erect penis.
  • Press the ruler into the pubic bone as far as possible. Fat can sometimes hide your penis' true length.
  • Measure your erect penis from the base to the end of the tip.
For girth:
  • Use a piece of string or flexible measuring tape.
  • Gently wrap the string or tape around the thickest part of your penis’ shaft.
  • If using string, mark where the string meets and measure the string distance with a ruler.
  • If using a flexible measuring tape, just mark the measurement once it reaches around your penis.
For width:

You can figure out the width of your penis the same way you’d determine the diameter of a circle. To do this, divide your girth measurement by 3.14. The resulting number is your width.

You can visit Healthline’s website to view their sizing chart(opens in a new tab).