New technologies in both reversible contraception and sterilisation are described. The review includes recent advances in the development of oral contraception, emergency contraception, injectable contraception, vaginal rings, subdermal implants, transdermal contraception, intrauterine devices, spermicides and barrier methods. It also covers methods of transcervical female sterilisation and more easily reversible male sterilisation. The emphasis is on the technology and its safety and effectiveness. Hormonal delivery systems are described in some detail. Mention is also made of research into vaccines and male hormonal methods, where progress has been disappointing.