A new survey reveals that 70% of young women have had unprotected sex with a new partner.
The poll for Company magazine found that even though young women admitted to being afraid of getting a sexually-transmitted infection (STI), 97% of them do not carry condoms.
One in 10 said they were too embarrassed to carry them while the same number thought it was their partner's responsibility.
Almost half said they had caught an STI following unprotected sex or knew someone who had.
Rates of sexual infection are on the rise across the UK, with young people making up most cases of the most common STI, chlamydia.
Figures have shown an alarming rise in genital herpes among girls aged 16 to 19 - up 16% between 2005 and 2006.
Now the magazine, together with condom manufacturer, Durex, has recruited celebrities, including singer Dannii Minogue, to design condom tins in a bid to get young women to carry the contraceptives.
Claire Irvin, acting editor of the magazine, said: "At Company we were shocked by the results of our survey.
"Our Play Safe campaign aims to start shifting attitudes and dispel the taboo that women don't need to or are too embarrassed to carry a condom.
"It's cool to take care of your sexual health - and it's cool to carry a condom."
DurexCopyright © PA Business 2007
Related story: Chlamydia-testing for and promoting awarenessClinical Zone: Women's health
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