What is graphene? - ONE®

What is graphene?

Condoms have come a long way over time. Did you know they were once made from tortoiseshell, thin leather, lamb intestines, oiled paper and lamb intestines? Let’s be glad today we have amazing condom brands, styles, materials, and even custom fit condoms to choose from! Condom companies are always searching for the next best thing. 

History of condoms

ONE® Condoms has been at the forefront of condom innovation since we came to market in 2003. About ten years ago, we heard buzz about a newly discovered wonder material called graphene and decided to go all in learning about its properties and applications. We hoped that one day we could incorporate its crazy cool capabilities into our condom technology. 

Ten years of research and development later, we finally released ONE® Flex™, the world’s first graphene condom! We are insanely proud to introduce graphene to the sexual health space and help our customers reach new levels of pleasure.

So what’s the hype about this graphene “wonder material” and how does it make sex with ONE® Flex™ better? You came to the right place. Let’s chat.

The Discovery 

In 2004 physicists Andre Geim and Konstantin Novoselov discovered graphene at the University of Manchester. Funny enough: the discovery was not intentionally sought after. Geim and Novoselov discovered graphene as a sort of “happy accident” when they were researching two-dimensional materials. The physicists were working with graphite (a common form of carbon used in pencils). 

During a method called mechanical exfoliation, Geim and Novoselov used scotch tape to repeatedly peel off thinner and thinner layers of graphite. The goal was to create tiny flakes to study under a microscope. We’re all into exploration, and this scientific exploration resulted in the physicists  isolating a single sheet of graphene (a single layer of carbon atoms) from the graphite. Graphene is the first ever two-dimensional atomic crystal ever extracted.

The physicists quickly discovered what amazing properties graphene had. They published their findings in the "Science" journal in 2004, outlining the remarkable properties of graphene. Innovators and experts across the world were immediately enthralled by the material and impressed by just how much it was capable of.  Graphene received international attention in 2010, when the physicists experimenting with its capabilities were awarded a Nobel Prize in Physics



What is graphene

We now know how graphene was discovered and that it immediately garnered the attention of many. But why? Next, let’s dive into graphene’s properties and what they are capable of.

Graphene is often referred to as a "wonder material" or “miracle material.” It is a single layer of carbon atoms arranged in a two-dimensional honeycomb (hexagonal) lattice. This structure makes graphene the thinnest material known at only one atom thick. You can understand graphene’s extreme thinness by comparing it to graphite. Think of graphite’s structure as a stack of 100 pieces of paper, and graphene as just one paper in that stack. 

Graphite vs. graphene

While graphene is incredibly thin, its structure also allows for incredible strength. Graphene is the strongest material on earth and 200 times stronger than steel. This kind of strength has the possibility to transform several industries reliant on heavy-duty materials. 

As if ulta-thinness and mega-strength aren’t impressive enough, graphene is also the most conductive solid ever discovered, an excellent conductor of electricity and has interesting light absorption abilities. The combination of strength, thinness, and thermal conductivity make the applications of graphene limitless. Graphene is being used in industries like thermal management, electronic devices manufacturing, solar cells and solar technology, and much more. Next, we’ll dive into how graphene is being used in ONE® Flex™ technology.


Graphene in ONE® Flex™

With all the amazing effects graphene is having in other industries, we knew we had to find a way to incorporate it in our condom technology. ONE scientists invented a way to bond our premium, vegan latex with graphene to create ONE® Flex™. The result is a condom unlike anything we’ve ever seen (or felt!) before. When bonded together, graphene molecules fill the space between latex molecules, creating a new material that advances thinness, flexibility, and thermal conductivity. This enhances comfort, pleasure, and sensation. 

On its own, latex is an insulator, which keeps you from feeling your partner’s natural body heat. Graphene, on the other hand, is the most conductive material on the planet. Because ONE® Flex™ molecularly combines latex with graphene, the condom increases body heat transfer by 85% compared to standard latex condoms. This results in more sensation and a natural, skin-on-skin feeling. 

ONE Flex, 85% better body heat transfer

One of the top complaints about ultra-thin condoms is a tight and restrictive feeling. When combined with graphene, latex can stretch farther without feeling tighter. Due to the capabilities of graphene, ONE® Flex™ condoms are ultra-thin without losing flexibility, sensation, or comfort.

The introduction of the graphene condom represents a leap forward for an industry that has not seen many material advances in recent decades. Although aware of the risks of unprotected sex, people are often unwilling to sacrifice sexual pleasure for safety. In a clinical trial, ONE® Flex™ was preferred 2-to-1 over standard latex condoms, a result that speaks positively to increasing condom usage.

ONE® Condoms is beyond proud to pave the way to a new age of innovation in the sexual health space. Thanks to graphene’s incredible capabilities and the hard work of ONE® scientists, we are proud to bring ONE® Flex™ to you and your bedroom. 

ONE Flex, the world's first graphene condom

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