The latest natural contraception ideas are frequently changing: the invention of the app has led to many new inventive ideas. However, natural does not always mean 100% accurate, so know that if you don’t follow the instructions to the letter, these methods will not be as accurate as the contraceptive pill.
But for those who have religious beliefs or don’t want to use polluting pills that are tested on animals (and change the sex of fish, as your hormone-rich pee goes down the pan), this area may be of interest.
Nothing is 100% (one recent review by the Swedish Medical Products Agency after people said one method did not work, found that failure rates were in line with the percentage advertised). Not even the contraceptive pill is 100% accurate.
Simple Natural Methods
- NHS has info on charting your cycle, which if done well, is up to 99% effective. Your GP can put you in touch with someone to teach you. Breastfeeding is pretty effective (not 100%) for the first months.
- Cyclebeads use beads or an app to chart your fertile times. Based on the Standard Days Method, this method was created by researchers at Georgetown University in Washington, USA. Simple to use, they are used by many African countries, who won’t take other contraception, due to religious beliefs. You county your cycle from the big bead, then the coloured beads say if you are fertile or not. Full info on site.
Basal Temperature Methods
- Ladycomp (Germany) is used worldwide. You wake up and take your basal temperature and then the device reads whether you are fertile, after a few weeks of learning (the Pearly version is cheaper, with less bells and whistles). It may not be accurate for people on hormone medication.
- Natural Cycles is the only FDA approved contraceptive app. Invented in Sweden by a couple of mathematic experts, this is a bit like the above, but in app form (reading your temperature to tell you if you’re fertile). Other fertility tracker apps are Dayse and Cyclotest.
Barrier Contraception Methods
- Fair Squared makes vegan rubber condoms with Fair Trade latex. Never flush them down the loo. Two other brands are Hanx and Sustain.
- FemCap is a hormone-free alternative to the feminine cap. It’s available on prescription. Full info on site, invented by a doctor.
Natural Spermicides etc
- Contragel is a natural alternative to chemical spermicide. This is nontoxic and vegan, and reduces PH levels due to 6 simple ingredients. At time of writing, it states it’s safe to use with silicone diaphragms and cervical caps, as well as latex or polyurethane condoms. Compatible with YES (below).
- YES organic lubricants were developed by two women in the medical care industry. No side effects, available on prescription.