Unlike our most popular hormonal birth control, male birth control probably won’t be in pill form. Birth control for men may come in the form of a new gel. The new male contraceptive is a combination of the hormones testosterone and progestin that dudes can slather on to the skin on their arms and abdomens. It’s said to drastically lower sperm counts–which means the male birth control won’t eliminate the chance of pregnancy completely, but it’ll sure lower it quite a bit. Previous tests for male birth control involved similar ingredients, but in an injection or patch form.
Male birth control used to be pretty much limited to slapping on a condom or pulling out and hoping for the best (which usually takes a turn for the worst). We’re pretty excited that some more sexual responsibility is being given to guys, though we don’t necessarily think they were against taking one for the team before–and neither do the docs who are developing the male contraceptive gel. One doctor put it simply, “I think [men] would use it more than is realized. Plenty of guys are concerned about unwanted pregnancy, almost as much as women.” That’s awesome news, right?
A lot more tests still need to be done before any kind of male birth control hits the market, and this particular male contraceptive gel isn’t without side effects, including acne (hormonal imbalances can trigger zits, and it’s usually male hormones that make it worse). If a guy breaks out from using male birth control, it almost becomes ironic, because he may assume he’s less likely to get girls–and then stop using it. Here’s hoping they fix that with further testing of new male birth control formulations.
We’re pretty stoked that sex, as long as you’re responsible, is becoming safer every day. We have pills that keep us from getting pregnant (and in a lot of cases, sick), vaccines that keep us from getting cervical cancer, and now guys can get in on the fun with male contraceptives! We just hope that the ignorant attitudes of people who think the HPV vaccine makes us crazy for sex, or the hypocrites who’ve never taken nor been prescribed contraceptives (like Rush Limbaugh, who, by most reasoning, should never even be getting laid to begin with) don’t ruin the possibility of affordable male birth control.
Just remember: your best bets for birth control involve using different kinds at the same time. If your guy uses male birth control, it doesn’t mean you should stop taking your own. If you combine a male contraceptive with your own, it’ll keep you that much safer from pregnancy. And it’s also super important to remember that even if you use your own birth control as well as birth control for men, you still need to use condoms to prevent STDs!
It’s rad that male birth control will help prevent unwanted pregnancies once it hits pharmacy shelves. After all, we can’t make babies or be sluts without help. Right, Rush?
Are you excited about male birth control? Would you encourage your guy you use a male contraceptive? Do you think birth control for men is a good idea? Would you and your guy try male birth control? Tell us in the comments!