9 Outlandish (And Possibly Deadly) Things Used as Contraceptives

  • Don’t actually try any of these insane methods. Just buy some condoms.

People love to have sex. There’s just that pesky problem of potentially ending up with a bun in the oven.

Today, we live in the golden age of casual sex, with readily available condoms and birth control pills. But things haven’t always been so easy.

Not that it’s stopped people from boinking. They just used whatever they had on hand that could conceivably prevent conception — no matter how bizarre it was.

Here are nine weird contraceptives used throughout history, and some that could’ve possibly killed somebody.

1. Animal Guts

No glove, no love. But in the days before latex and condoms, you had to get creative with what you made the glove out of.

And one of the most common choices was animal intestines. To make them more comfortable (for both parties) ancient people used to soak the guts in warm water or milk first.

As far as bizarre contraceptives go, at least this one probably works. As long as the intestine is tightly tied on end and properly cleaned, it ought to stop sperm splatter.

You just have to get over the thought that you’ve wrapped your dong in something that was once up an animal’s butt.

2. Blacksmith’s Cooling Water

Greek doctor Soranus came up with what he probably thought was an ingenious idea in the 2nd century. He theorized women could prevent pregnancy if they jumped backward seven times after sex and chugged the water blacksmiths used to cool metal.

Of course, it didn’t work. Until the metal remnants started building up in the body, rendering the lady sterile.

That is, if she didn’t die from heavy metal poisoning first.

Fun fact, this method kind of survived until World War I. Women would flock to work in factories so lead exposure would make them sterile.

3. Lemons

Have some lemon before sex. No, we don’t mean drinking some lemon juice.

People from around the world rely on cutting a lemon in half and shoving it up a woman’s vagina. It was supposed to work as a primitive diaphragm.

In a way, it sort of did. If the fit was right, the lemon could theoretically stop sperm from getting into the womb. Additionally, lemon juice is a mild spermicide.

You just have to ignore the horrendous vaginal infections you could get.

4. Crocodile Crap

Okay, so putting a lemon up there isn’t a good idea. But what about some crocodile dung?

That was the bright idea ancient Egyptians came up with. This non-functional contraceptive method is recorded on a medical papyrus from the 17th century BCE.

The Egyptians thought that sperm would get tangled in the thick, sticky crocodile crap. We’re going to go out on a limb and guess that no Egyptian woman actually agreed to try this method.

5. Coca-Cola

A cold Coke is a refreshing drink to have post-coitus. And in the 1950s and ‘60s, people thought it could prevent pregnancy, too.

Just shake up a bottle ‘till it’s ready to pop, open the cap, quickly slip the mouth up the vagina, and let ‘er rip.

People at the time thought the carbonic acid in Coke would kill sperm. The bottle was also considered to be the perfect shape for an impromptu douche.

In case you’re eyeing a Coke bottle right now, stop right there. This doesn’t work, and it’ll only make a lady susceptible to infections and STDs.

6. Animal Testicles

Conceiving a baby generally requires a pair of balls somewhere along the chain of events. If you apply a twisted enough logic, it makes sense why ancient people thought animal testicles might have some power to stop pregnancy.

How the testicles were used depends on the time period and location. In China, for example, women would grind beaver balls into a powder and enjoy it as a supposedly contraceptive after-sex tea.

In Europe, testicles were more magical. All the woman had to do was wear a chain of weasel gonads around her neck or thigh.

We don’t know why they thought that would work.

7. Squat & Sneeze

Not everybody in ancient Greece was on board Soranus’ heavy metal water idea. Instead, other doctors of the time came up with a more natural solution.

After dancing the horizontal mambo, they advised the woman should assume a stable squatting position. Then, she needed to sneeze.

We suppose the idea was that the force of the sneeze would squirt all the man goo out of her privates. You can see the logic, but it doesn’t work that way.

8. Juniper Berries

Like the Chinese, Native Americans believed in the contraceptive power of tea. But instead of beaver testicles, they made the tea out of juniper berries — and they were actually onto something.

Juniper berries make uterine linings unsuitable for embryonic growth. If a pregnant woman consumes a lot of juniper berries, she might have a miscarriage.

It’s not a stretch to think juniper berries would therefore prevent conception as well. But just to be clear, this is not a reliable method, if it works at all.

9. Mercury

Ah, good old mercury, the miracle medicine of the ancient world. It’s been used as everything from a common cold medicine to an elixir of immortality.

With such varied uses, it’s no wonder it was taken as a contraceptive as well. Just swig some mercury after sex and you’re good to go.

We hope we don’t have to tell you that, in reality, mercury is highly toxic. The only thing it’ll do is kill you, not prevent pregnancy.

But then again, we suppose you can’t get pregnant if you’re dead. Huh. They got us there.