Contraception Reviews

Vaginal ring vs Contraceptive gel

Vaginal ring

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Contraceptive gel

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Overview

Rated 3.0

9 reviews

3 weekly

Frequency

91% - 99+%

Effectiveness

Increased

Blood clot risk

None

Effect on fertility

Rated 4.3

4 reviews

Before sex

Frequency

79% - 86%

Effectiveness

None

Blood clot risk

None

Effect on fertility

Vaginal ring ingredients

Main hormones in Vaginal ring

progestin

Contraceptive gel ingredients

Birth control gels include spermicides and a new gel called Phexxi. These gels contain chemicals which prevent sperm from reaching an egg by affecting the sperm's motility and helping to block the cervix (opening into the womb).

What Lowdown reviewers say

Mood

33% no impact on mood

Bleeds

44% lighter periods

Sex drive

56% lost sex drive

Weight

67% gained weight

Skin

33% improved skin

Cycle return

33% in 1 month

Mood

50% very positive

Bleeds

75% no change

Sex drive

75% increased sex drive

Weight

50% no impact

Skin

100% no impact on skin

Cycle return

100% don’t know impact

Benefits: What this birth control can help with

Acne or bad skin

Heavy periods

PMS and PMDD

PCOS symptoms

Period pain

There are no benefits that are recognised in scientific research or guidelines for this birth control

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Want to switch birth control?

Check out our latest reviews

Real life reviews from people like you

Vaginal ring reviews

9 reviews

Vaginal ring  
Used for 12 - 18 mo
22 years old
🇺🇸 US
  •  6 days ago

NuvaRing  

I like the ring, I have gained a bit of weight though. I am also very nervous about blood clot risk so I might switch to minipill, but the ring has made my periods very bearable and I can choose to only have them every two months! I also had a decrease in body acne on the ring, particularly on my back. I would recommend this method if you are not overweight, smoke, or are over 35 as the risk of blood clots goes does a lot and it’s easy to use! I also have experienced headaches for the first time in my life since being on this, they’re mild but not fun.

Read more

Improved skin

2 more effects

0 helpful

0 comments

Vaginal ring  
Used for 18 mo - 3 yr
38 years old
🇺🇸 US
  •  17th Mar 24

Annovera ring  

This birth control caused me to have 2 strokes and I almost died. I do not recommend it at all. My doctor insisted I use it and within the first year I had more frequent and more severe headaches. I gained a ton of weight and my cholesterol shot up despite my being a very active vegetarian and working with a dietician. After 18 months on it I had my first stroke and it went undiagnosed, I had a severe headache and I went blind. The hospital sent me home and told me it was "just a migraine." 10 months later I had a massive bilateral stroke that has ruined my life. I am only in my 30s. Run far away from this medication.


Somewhat negative mood

2 more effects

0 helpful

0 comments

Vaginal ring  
Used for 8+ yr
29 years old
🇺🇸 US
  •  2nd Feb 24

NuvaRing  

I was on this birth control for 10 years until I got a blood clot and had to be on blood thinners for a month. Not fun.


Somewhat negative mood

2 more effects

0 helpful

0 comments

Vaginal ring  
Used for 12 - 18 mo
22 years old
🇺🇸 US
  •  6 days ago

NuvaRing  

I like the ring, I have gained a bit of weight though. I am also very nervous about blood clot risk so I might switch to minipill, but the ring has made my periods very bearable and I can choose to only have them every two months! I also had a decrease in body acne on the ring, particularly on my back. I would recommend this method if you are not overweight, smoke, or are over 35 as the risk of blood clots goes does a lot and it’s easy to use! I also have experienced headaches for the first time in my life since being on this, they’re mild but not fun.


Improved skin

2 more effects

0 helpful

0 comments

Vaginal ring  
Used for 18 mo - 3 yr
38 years old
🇺🇸 US
  •  17th Mar 24

Annovera ring  

This birth control caused me to have 2 strokes and I almost died. I do not recommend it at all. My doctor insisted I use it and within the first year I had more frequent and more severe headaches. I gained a ton of weight and my cholesterol shot up despite my being a very active vegetarian and working with a dietician. After 18 months on it I had my first stroke and it went undiagnosed, I had a severe headache and I went blind. The hospital sent me home and told me it was "just a migraine." 10 months later I had a massive bilateral stroke that has ruined my life. I am only in my 30s. Run far away from this medication.


Somewhat negative mood

2 more effects

0 helpful

0 comments

Vaginal ring  
Used for 8+ yr
29 years old
🇺🇸 US
  •  2nd Feb 24

NuvaRing  

I was on this birth control for 10 years until I got a blood clot and had to be on blood thinners for a month. Not fun.


Somewhat negative mood

2 more effects

0 helpful

0 comments


Contraceptive gel reviews

4 reviews

Contraceptive gel  
Used for 8+ yr
26 years old
🇺🇸 US
  •  17th Apr 24

Contraceptive gel  

Birth control implant I have had this birth control for 10 years (3 implants). It makes your period lighter and more regular, or takes it away completely; I had a birth control pill ( i'm not sure if the name) prescribed beforehand and i could not stand that one.


Top side effects not reported

0 helpful

0 comments

Contraceptive gel  
Used for 12 - 18 mo
42 years old
🇺🇸 US
  •  12th Jan 24

Phexxi gel  

I feel like I've tried every birth control out there. Pills, patches rings, IUDs - with the exception of depo, you name it, I've tried it. But Phexxi has been a game changer for me! I never felt "whole" on hormonal methods or the IUDs, but with Phexxi I don't have to deal with hormonal side effects and I only use it when I need it. Super easy to use, not messy, and I feel like myself again!


Very positive mood

1 more effect

1 helpful

0 comments

Contraceptive gel  
Used for 18 mo - 3 yr
56 years old
🇺🇸 US
  •  12th Jan 24

Phexxi gel  

Love that I can use Phexxi only when I need it. I do not like adding hormones to my body. I really love the lubricating effect, makes for even better sex!


Very positive mood

1 more effect

1 helpful

0 comments

Contraceptive gel  
Used for 8+ yr
26 years old
🇺🇸 US
  •  17th Apr 24

Contraceptive gel  

Birth control implant I have had this birth control for 10 years (3 implants). It makes your period lighter and more regular, or takes it away completely; I had a birth control pill ( i'm not sure if the name) prescribed beforehand and i could not stand that one.


Top side effects not reported

0 helpful

0 comments

Contraceptive gel  
Used for 12 - 18 mo
42 years old
🇺🇸 US
  •  12th Jan 24

Phexxi gel  

I feel like I've tried every birth control out there. Pills, patches rings, IUDs - with the exception of depo, you name it, I've tried it. But Phexxi has been a game changer for me! I never felt "whole" on hormonal methods or the IUDs, but with Phexxi I don't have to deal with hormonal side effects and I only use it when I need it. Super easy to use, not messy, and I feel like myself again!


Very positive mood

1 more effect

1 helpful

0 comments

Contraceptive gel  
Used for 18 mo - 3 yr
56 years old
🇺🇸 US
  •  12th Jan 24

Phexxi gel  

Love that I can use Phexxi only when I need it. I do not like adding hormones to my body. I really love the lubricating effect, makes for even better sex!


Very positive mood

1 more effect

1 helpful

0 comments

Contraceptive gel  
Used for 6 - 12 mo
24 years old
🇺🇸 US
  •  11th Dec 23

Phexxi gel  

Phexxi works great — if you actually use it. Oops! My kid sister used Phexxi for about a year either by itself or along with condoms when she was ovulating. Then one time when she and her boyfriend were staying in my apartment for a family wedding, they picked me as the designated driver and the two of them had way too much to drink. They were all over each other in the car on the way home. Which was kind of cute but then when we got back to my place she wanted me to help her insert her birth control. I took her back to their bedroom and started getting her out of her clothes and I was like why don’t you just skip using it if you’re not in the middle of your cycle, and then she showed me her period tracker on her phone. Yep, not a good time to skip using protection, but still … She passed out while I was reading the instructions on the applicator, so I just was like whatever, I’m not doing this. I got off the rest of her clothes and woke her up and said I would tell her boyfriend she was ready. She didn’t even ask if I had inserted her Phexxi. The walls in my apartment are thin, so I heard the entire “discussion” when he couldn’t find their box of condoms. She was too drunk and horny to say no. She had no idea she was about to try to conceive. And yes, she became a mommy that night.


Increased sex drive

1 helpful

0 comments

Birth control alternatives and comparisons

Compare the Vaginal ring with other birth control

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