Many people think that the condom is a modern day invention and form of contraception. The truth is it dates back to 1,000 B.C. and used by Egyptians at that time. As such, the condom is considered one of the oldest forms of contraception.
In Europe, cave paintings at Combarelles in France during the ancient times already showed proof of condom use. The period was said to be from 100 to 200 A.D.
Historical records, however, credit Gabrille Fallopius as the first inventor of the condom in the 1500’s. This Italian claimed to have created a sheath made from linen material and then did trials among 1,100 men. His trial found that none of the men who used his condom were infected by syphilis.
It was in the 1700’s when the condom became popular. At that time, the condom was already considered a contraceptive and not just a prophylactic material. The product was widely promoted through handbills and advertisements by the year 1766.
The condom made from rubber material was developed much later in the 1840’s. This was after the vulcanized rubber was created courtesy of Goodyear and Hancock. The term vulcanization refers to the process of treating rubber using sulphur and then subjecting it to extreme heat. What this process does is convert rubber into a sturdy elastic material.
After rubber, the latex material was used in making condoms but this was not until the 1930’s. Latex condom is thinner than the rubber type but is also durable and reliable in protecting users from sexually transmitted diseases and unwanted pregnancy. With this material and newer technology in manufacturing the most popular of contraceptive, leading companies have made available a wide variety of condoms on the market today including the flavored, textured and thinnest type which feels like second skin to users.