The Push for Nothing

25 Jan,2022



By Sanjeev Kotnala


Sanjeev KotnalaFrom time immemorial, couples always wanted nothing to come between them in their intimate moments. Condom is a product with a functional advantage but is perceived to decrease pleasure with its unnatural feel.


A long time back, the category had moved away from the initial promise of prevention of STD and pregnancy protection to pleasure enhancer. And men hated the thought of using a condom more than women also; they anyway believed contraception was a woman lookout.


A study by India Today points out that only 95% of married couples aged 15-49 use condoms. Although 97% of sexually active men are aware of the importance of using a condom. So claim counterclaims and product innovations should be part of the game.


It will be wrong to say that “The basic design for the modern condom was developed a few years before the Wright brothers’ first successful flight. Since then, advances in aeronautics have sent probes to mars, but other than the introduction of latex, the condom is nearly identical to the way it was.”


Manufacturers have worked to enhance the promise of pleasure and break the barrier. You name it, ribbed, Dotted, Thin, Ultra-Thin, Delay and Flavoured, and they have the base covered.



The Race To The Thinnest Condom 

The thinness of the condom is one area where the brands have fought hard.

No doubt condom manufacturers kept creating products and promising NOTHING between the act and the pleasure. A thin condom is expected to keep the feeling natural. So thin that it may not be felt. International condom brand Trojan launched “ultrasmooth” condom ‘Pure Ecstasy’ with a premium lubricant allowing male and female users to “feel the pleasure, not the condom!”. Feels like NOTHING is there.

Yet, there was always something.


Durex Thinness Promise.

One of the most prominent brands, Durex, promised ‘Thin’, ‘Ultra-thin’ and then ‘Invisible’. It added flavours to add to the naughtiness. Unfortunately, mostly seen as guided and governed from the men’s point of view. Yet it did not go the whole mile.


Durex invisible had all the right notes, promising start with ‘Nothing comes in-between us’ and ending it with ‘as if it is not even there’. It was launched as India’s Thinnest condom and a very functional claim that should have settled the score. However, they skewed towards flavours, and it became India’s Thinnest Flavoured condom. The promise ‘Feel the Flavour!’- ignored the thinnest part and thus missed the focus.


Durex Feel Thin was introduced in India; however, it added to confusion and cacophony about the claim of thinness. Durex AIR Ultra-Thin muddied the water. And no one said how thin was the condom to be called ‘Thinnest’.



KamaSutra, the first brand that revolutionaries condom advertising, had the Ultra Thin promoting intimate pleasure and the art of making love.


Manforce with brand ambassador Sunny Leone served Ultra Feel. However, with superlatives out of the communication, they did not go the whole range. Manforce pushed the condom with a claim, ‘So thin, it’s next to Nothing’!



The new commercial for Skore Nothing is bang on the subject. Women endorsement is not new in the category. But, it is all about the naming, promise and execution. It is definitely naughtier within the acceptable boundaries.

The conversation between friends is a suitable device. The lady claims to feel Nothing to an extent she has to check. The brand on the website claims’ Nothing’ is thinner than human hair but leaves it to experience – not making it part of the communication. Still, no measurement of thinness is provided. However, the line ‘So thin- so that you can feel everything’ goes well with the communication.


This is not the first time Skore played with thinness. Before ‘Nothing’, there was Skore Skin Thin, and it claimed to be thinnest in its class- whatever that means.

A man may hate to use a condom but will use it if the lady insists. And this commercial with three female friends chatting – sharing experience is an excellent way to present the case.

One must appreciate the collective efforts of the copywriter, art director, casting agent and production house. The banter between the friends and the expressions is just brilliant. Add to this, the logo  and subtle white packaging, all of them enhance the promise of ‘Nothing’.



Nothing Is Not New.

Durex had the ‘Nothing’ idea but failed to capitalize on it. Extra admiration for the team for the brand name for picking a word that features prominently in competitive brand communication. So, now competition says- Nothing comes between you and her! It might sound as if endorsing Skore Nothing. A Dipper condom equivalent from Tata.


Condom Like Starbucks Coffee

Now to a slightly unadventurous or non-initiated person, the fun could be choosing the product and trying the range out. Within Skore, there are options galore, Dotted or Ribbed, Flavoured or Coloured, Climax delay or sensation or choice by thinness. There are Options from Cool Watermelon, Belgium Chocolate, Pinacolato, Orange, Dots, Banana, Cherry, Strawberry, Chocolate. Much more variety than flavours offered by some of the ice cream brands.



Just For The Click 

TRIVIA I. Apparently, the thinnest condom is by a Chinese brand -AONI – Ultra-thin 001 condom. It holds the Gunnies Record for being the world thinnest condom at 0.036 mm thick, almost half thick as a Human hair. Still Something.

TRIVIA -II. In 2013. The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation offered a $100,000 grant to anyone who can develop what’s being called the next generation of the condom. A condom that significantly preserves or enhances pleasure to improve the uptake and regular use. This could mean safe, new materials to “preserve or enhance sensation.” And even ease of use. Of the 812 entries, 11 got the grand grant to realize their product.


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