Why You Should Switch to a Menstrual Cup, ASAP

My friends are pretty ~woke~ I’d say. (Do people still use that? Is my youth fleeting that much? I digress!). Whether it’s a new article on queer theory, a sex toy I need in my life, or an inclusive, sustainable brand I’d never heard of, my BFFs tell me about the best things. So, when they all ditched pads and tampons and switched to a menstrual cup, I figured they were on to something.

When the Diva Cup was first released, I thought it was just about the strangest concept. You’re gonna put that inside of you, and it’s going to catch your blood like that? That’s gonna be a no from me, dawg. I wanted nothing to do with that pink little monstrosity they called a “menstrual cup.”

As more and more of my friends began using it, they sang of its praises over and over. “It’s a product I truly cherish.” “It’s the only thing that makes my period at least somewhat bearable.” “I’d do anything for my Diva Cup.” That’s only the half of it! So, I finally decided to give that little guy a try.

So, for the basics: a menstrual cup is a small, flexible cup usually made of silicone or latex that catches and collects your menstrual blood rather than absorbing it like a pad or tampon. (I know, I know, it’s weird, but hear me out!)

 

How to insert:

If you’ve ever used a birth control ring or a diaphragm, the insertion is pretty similar. Fold the cup (just as you would a birth control ring), and insert just as you would a tampon without the applicator. The cup will spring open if inserted correctly, and it’ll just rest on the walls of your vagina. Your menstrual blood will drip right into the cup!

 

Source: @thedivacup

 

Why you need to make the switch ASAP:

 

Bye, TSS

Toxic Shock Syndrome can occur as a result of leaving a tampon in for too long, so you have to be careful sleeping or spending too much time before changing your tampon. Not with a menstrual cup! You can use your menstrual cup overnight, and you don’t have to worry about bringing along extras to get you through a long day.

 

It’s sustainable

If you purchase a reusable menstrual cup, it can last up to 10 years, eliminating the need for more paper products and packaging for pads and tampons.

 

You’ll never have to run out to buy pads and tampons again

Because a menstrual cup can last so long if you take care of it, you’ll never have a 7am 7/11 run to get pads because you ran out last month and kept forgetting every time you went to the store. This also makes a menstrual cup pretty cost-effective in the long run. One payment between $20 and $40, and you’re good for years. 

 

You can have sex with some of them in!

The silicone and rubber cups have to removed during sex (for obvious reasons), but the softer, disposable ones are designed to stay in while you’re having sex. This might just be the perfect addition to your sex box for any time you’re on your period — it’ll catch any blood and savor all of your nice towels at the same time.

 

It can be more comfortable

Pads can chafe and cause rashes, but when you find the right menstrual cup, you won’t even feel it.

 

There’s less odor

Your menstrual odor only comes out when it hits the air, but with the menstrual cup, it’s sealed in there until you remove the cup. Amazing.

 

Source: @mylenacup

 

Tips:

 

Get the right size

Sizing is everything here. If it’s too big or too small, it won’t fit your body right and will probably be incredibly uncomfortable. Do some research and figure out which one will be the best for you based on your age and whether or not you’ve given birth.

 

Find the right one for you

Not all menstrual cups will work for you! Different brands make different shapes and materials, and someone with a super active, HIIT-class-six-days-a-week lifestyle will probably want something a little different from someone who likes to spend a little more time on the couch. Take this quiz to find out which will work best for you.

 

Embrace the awkward

Putting in a menstrual cup for the first time is probably about one of the weirdest things I’ve ever done. Once I realized that every woman who’s ever tried to use one of these things has done it, I stopped feeling weird about it. It’s kinda uncomfortable and weird, but so what? You’re saving the earth, one pad/tampon-less day at a time.

 

Talk to your doctor before starting anything new

This is always good advice for most things in life, but when you’re inserting something new into your body, it’s good to make sure it will work for you. Certain manufacturers don’t recommend using a menstrual cup if you have an IUD, so ask your doctor if he or she thinks this will work for you.

 

Some of our favorites:

Have you ever tried a menstrual cup? What was your experience like?! Let us know in the comments!

  • Katia

    Some points I didn’t see in the article:
    – Do not try it for the first time while on your period. Practice getting it in, getting it out, where it feels comfortable while there isn’t blood everywhere (learn from me!)
    – Use your shower while taking it out. Since it can last all day, I don’t ever need to take it out in a public restroom. One day I might be comfortable enough… but for now that’s easiest (and grossest?)
    – They help with cramps!! not sure how, but maybe its like a little wall not allowing you to contract during a cramp?? no idea, but its amazing

    • THEY HELP WITH CRAMPS!?! OMG I have the worst cramps every month so if this is actually true I need to get myself into using these cups asap! Thanks so much for sharing your experience! x

    • Lara GGranero

      I came here to say to take it out in the shower, too! Messy, but super easy to clean.

      Also, I went with a brand called Enna because it comes with an applicator. Love it!

    • Emma @ MenstrualCupaholic.com

      Hey Katia, some great points you bring up there! I’ll also add that YOU SHOULDN’T PANIC IF YOU CAN’T FIND IT FOR THE FIRST TIME! Haha, I’m talking from experience here. The first time I tried removing it (during a “dry run”) I freaked out cos I couldn’t find or reach it. I had to google it and I even thought I would have to go to the doctor! Yikes. But I finally figured out how to remove it safely, and I wrote down some tips here!

      How To Remove a Menstrual Cup Easily!

  • I have such light bleeding that I use maybe two tampons for the entire duration of my period, I just don’t feel like this would be cost-effective or useful to someone like me.

    (The dysphoric feelings I have about that part of my anatomy would make me hesitate as well, the less I have to interact with that part of my body, the better!)

    On The Cusp | https://on-th3-cusp.blogspot.com/

  • Wow this is so interesting! I never knew half of these things about menstrual cups! I might have to give them a go! I don’t really seem to agree with tampons so maybe this might be a good alternative x http://www.justsavxnnah.com

    • Emma @ MenstrualCupaholic.com

      Definitely check them out Savannah! It’s been a game changer for me since I switched last year. I’m a scuba diver, and using tampons and pads just don’t work when you’re on a boat with no where safe to dispose of these items! If you need any more info on cups, come and check us out at MenstrualCupaholic.com

  • I switched to a Diva Cup a few months ago after years of skepticism and fascination….BEST DECISION EVER! My hesitation is that it would be messy and cumbersome and I also travel a lot for work, so I was trying to figure out how the hell I would empty/clean it in a public restroom (walk my bloody cup out to the sink to wash? No thanks…) but it’s the opposite of all of that. It’s so clean and easy and I love that I don’t have to buy tampons/liners/pads anymore (and that it’s decreasing my environmental impact) AND I no longer need “period underwear”.

    Tip I would add: Taking it out can be tricky. There are some really helpful Youtube tutorials out there about taking it out (the one I like she uses her hands to demonstrate, so don’t worry about being scarred for life looking at someone’s vajayjay haha). If you don’t break the seal with your finger along the side, pulling it out can feel like you’re sucking your organs out too.