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How Hefty Garbage Bags Inspired a Condom Manufacturer’s Design

Sensis Condoms

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Last week, we profiled Trojan’s condom developer and chief
principal scientist. But Trojan, big as it may be, doesn’t have the market cornered on condom creativity. Startup Sensis Condoms claims that its products are simple enough to be put on blindfolded–and according to founder Beau Thompson, the inspiration for Sensis’ QuikStrips-equipped condoms is pretty trashy.

Thompson didn’t always want to be a condom entrepreneur. But after “one rough night” where he couldn’t get a condom on correctly, the architect decided he could do better. The a-ha moment came, Thompson says, as he was taking out the trash. “I opened the Hefty Cinch Sak, grabbed the handles, and pulled them. In a day, I had figured out the best way to roll into a condom,” he says. The Cinch Sak inspired Sensis’s QuikStrips–essentially, pull tabs for condoms.

Sensis Condoms pull tabs

Thompson’s pull-tab revelation came in the late 1990s, and since then, he has been working to grow the Sensis brand. Sensis condoms have been on store shelves for a year now. Feedback has been encouraging, Thompson says, and the company hopes to launch a new line of condoms in the near future (so far, the company sells thin lubricated and micro-dot ribbed varieties).

It’s hard to say whether Sensis has a chance against its larger competitors, but Thompson is game for the challenge. “We’re hoping 2011 is our year,” he says.

Ariel Schwartz can be reached on Twitter or by email.

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