Icon #10: “Male + Female Condom”



When I was originally trying to create an icon to represent birth control / contraception, I came up with some ideas…none of which I thought really conveyed the concept well: A barrier between egg and sperm, a crossed out fetus (which I quickly realized might be interpreted as referring to an abortion), and then the specific methods themselves (e.g., condoms, Depo, patch, ring, IUD, etc.).

I ended up creating the above icon of a male condom. Condoms are commonly used to represent birth control, barrier methods and contraception. I find that most people will tend to automatically associate the male condom with pregnancy prevention or better yet, safer sex. I decided not to create a female condom icon because it is less well known and in many cases, people just don’t know what the female condom looks like. And then…I started thinking that this is a great reason to create an icon and some visibility for it! So, Voila:



Female condoms can be a very powerful tool for safer sex and best of all, insertion and use is female led. They are a bit unusual looking (people joke that it’s like a large, noisy plastic bag) but in the end, they are protective and a great option for many women. I don’t think I did it much justice as an icon, but I’m not sure how best to visualize it. I placed the inner ring at a tilt to show that it’s moveable and versatile compared to the outer ring. Would love your thoughts on any improvements I can make.

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