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Learning, Sharing, and Teaching => Reader Recommendations => Topic started by: exceljunkie on May 23, 2014, 08:32:55 AM

Title: Menstrual Cups
Post by: exceljunkie on May 23, 2014, 08:32:55 AM
So, I'm going to go out on a limb here. I know most people don't want to talk about menstrual products but I just read MMM's blog post on his shower frequency (http://www.mrmoneymustache.com/2013/12/30/are-you-cleaning-out-your-own-wallet/), and I felt empowered to bring this up here.

I did not learn about menstrual cups till I was in college. And I only learned about it because there was an group on campus (Student Sexuality Info Service) that I was pretty much required to bring to my hall for a program when I was an RA. The cups are super comfortable, safe, no leaks ever (if used correctly), and pretty much infinitely reusable so super environmentally-friendly. The two most popular ones are the DivaCup (silicone, around $25) and the Keeper (rubber, around $20). The company that makes the Keeper seems to be shifting to silicone with their Moon Cup product. If we estimate the cost of pad/tampons at $4 per month, you get your money back within 5-6 months. I got mine for $5 because they were subsidized through the school for the program. 

Have you ever seen menstrual cups at a store? I'm pretty sure conventional stores don't sell them because it would kill their pad/tampon business. I have only seen them at super crunchy health food stores (I don't shop at whole foods, but maybe they sell them there now). If you know what to search for, they're easy to find online.

Maybe some other day I'll come back and write about cost-effective birth control. (Spoiler alert: IUDs.)
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: smalllife on May 23, 2014, 09:16:00 AM
I've seen them at Whole Foods and a few other natural/local grocery places with a beauty section.  They only have Diva Cup and occasionally the Keeper though . . .
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: MicroRN on May 23, 2014, 11:02:48 AM
I have a DivaCup, but I don't find it all that comfortable.  I've never liked tampons either.  I like cloth pads though.  There are the disposable cups (Instead) that I've seen at the regular stores, but I bought my DivaCup online. 

IUDs are also awesome, although I happen to have a baby courtesy of ParaGard.  Unfortunately 99.4% effective does not equal 100% effective!  I've been pretty happy with the Mirena too.  Definitely cost effective though.  I paid a $20 office visit copay for the Paragard, for something that should last at least 10 years. 
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: abhe8 on May 23, 2014, 11:04:33 AM
I love my diva cup. Ive had it about 8 years.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: exceljunkie on May 23, 2014, 11:32:27 AM
I have a DivaCup, but I don't find it all that comfortable.

Ok, I actually didn't really think it was comfortable when I first got it. I didn't use it for a couple of years then tried it again; it was something I really wanted to like. I don't know if I just got used to it or what, I don't even feel it anymore.

IUDs are also awesome, although I happen to have a baby courtesy of ParaGard. 

Umm... keeping my fingers crossed with my Mirena!
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: lsaurus on May 23, 2014, 11:36:40 AM
I love my diva cup! I feel like a crazy cult follower because I tell all my girl friends about it.  They think it sounds awful but I was really annoyed when I started using it that nobody had told me about it.  I went 10+ years using stupid gross tampons before I found the diva cup.  I have seen them for sell at REI.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: MicroRN on May 23, 2014, 11:41:28 AM
Umm... keeping my fingers crossed with my Mirena!

It's very rare!  I still recommend IUDs all the time, because they are still more effective than just about anything else.  I have a uterine shape abnormality that likely kept the Paragard from being that effective.  I actually got pregnant with it twice in 1.5 years, one miscarriage, one term pregnancy.  The Mirena is probably better for me because the hormones make the placement less of an issue. 
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: hoodedfalcon on May 23, 2014, 11:43:34 AM
I used the Keeper back in the day and hated it, but I forced myself to continue using it until it got lost (no idea how it got lost). Tried sea sponges next ....issues with laughing/sneezing/ick factor in public restrooms made me give those up pretty quickly. Fast forward to last year and I decide to try the Diva Cup...Gave it 7 months, and I just don't like it. It leaks. It is awkward to insert. It sometimes hurts to remove. blah blah. Back to tampons for me.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: smalllife on May 23, 2014, 11:46:26 AM
I love my diva cup! ... I was really annoyed when I started using it that nobody had told me about it.  I went 10+ years using stupid gross tampons before I found the diva cup. 

+10  I can't believe these haven't caught on!  So much better.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: Cressida on May 23, 2014, 11:46:59 AM
It's not uncommon to stop having periods when you're on the Mirena. (This has been true for me.) So it can be a cost savings in more ways than one, if it works for you.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: BrakeForTurtles on May 23, 2014, 12:43:47 PM
+1 for both cups and IUDs. For me they work especially well in tandem due to the lighter/irregular periods on the Mirena. My Mirena cost me $5, and I'm going to have my first one replaced in July. I'm trying to convince all my friends to take it up, but doctors in Australia seem a little reluctant to prescribe the Mirena to women who haven't had children yet. I had zero issues but a few of my friends have been talked out of it in favour of Implanon or the plain old boring (and expensive, and tedious) Pill.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: mrsggrowsveg on May 23, 2014, 01:51:43 PM
I love my Diva Cup.  I seriously wonder why no one told me about this years ago.  I bought it off of Amazon.  It does come in two sizes.  One for women who have given birth and one for those who haven't.  If one size doesn't work, some people have good results with the other.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: brycedoula on May 23, 2014, 01:59:13 PM
Canadian response here:

I bought my first DivaCup @ London Drugs; paid about $40?? LOVED IT. Unfortunately my cat got ahold of it & chewed some holes in it (yup, he's weird like that).
I LOVE my 2nd Diva Cup. I haven't bought tampons in probably 4 years, and that's an expense I really don't miss. I don't usually have any daytime leakage issues, unless I get lazy and don't empty it as often as I should on day 1 or 2 of my cycle. So I wear a pantiliner just in case. Sometimes it will leak a bit @ night (due to cervical position and/or flow) so I'll put an old towel down to protect the sheets & mattress.

I have definitely seen them @ "crunchy" stores, but London Drugs is a pretty mainstream store up here.

It took me a few cycles to get comfortable changing it in a public washroom, but it's all good now.

However if I'm going camping or someplace where I can't wash my hands appropriately before/after I will use tampons.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: Nkenga on May 28, 2014, 08:50:20 AM
I've tried the Keeper - leaked like crazy, the Diva cup - fewer leaks, but I still had to be extremely careful, and finally (trumpets please), the Lady cup! I had to order it online, and I THINK it was about $30 bucks, but I've been using it for over 2 years and am SO glad I kept trying after two failures! And I could NEVER use tampons - I would get Toxic Shock Syndrome symptoms within 2 hours of inserting one. So I was even happier to find a menstrual cup that works for me - no more pads!
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: windawake on May 29, 2014, 10:59:56 AM
I've had my DivaCup for five years now and love it. Has anyone replaced theirs from it just being old? On the website they used to say you could wait 10 years to replace it, but now it says you should replace it once a year. Mine seems to still be going strong but I'm curious when I should get a new one. Anyone else experience this?
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: fallstoclimb on May 30, 2014, 09:11:03 AM
Oh I def don't think you need to replace once a year.  That sounds like a profit-driven recommendation to me.  I've had mine for about 4 years and I love it.

For those who found it uncomfortable, you can trim down the 'stem' part and that might help. 
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: NumberCruncher on May 30, 2014, 09:34:37 AM
Umm... keeping my fingers crossed with my Mirena!

It's very rare!  I still recommend IUDs all the time, because they are still more effective than just about anything else.  I have a uterine shape abnormality that likely kept the Paragard from being that effective.  I actually got pregnant with it twice in 1.5 years, one miscarriage, one term pregnancy.  The Mirena is probably better for me because the hormones make the placement less of an issue.

It may defeat the purpose of getting an IUD, but you could "double up" and have IUD + barrier protection (i.e. condom)

copper IUD - 99.4% effective
hormonal IUD (mirena) - 99.8% effective
condom - 82-98% (typical-perfect use) effective

Assuming barrier and IUD are independent: (.2%)(18%) or (.2%)(2%)
0.004%-0.036% chance of pregnancy in any given year

The effectiveness is always per year - probability of getting pregnant in, say, a 15 year window with a Mirena would be around 3% (binomial distribution). It's still the most effective measure if you only use one method, and way better than something like perfect condom use (26% chance of at least one pregnancy in 15 years with PERFECT use).
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: exceljunkie on May 30, 2014, 12:26:42 PM
Umm... keeping my fingers crossed with my Mirena!

It's very rare!  I still recommend IUDs all the time, because they are still more effective than just about anything else.  I have a uterine shape abnormality that likely kept the Paragard from being that effective.  I actually got pregnant with it twice in 1.5 years, one miscarriage, one term pregnancy.  The Mirena is probably better for me because the hormones make the placement less of an issue.

It may defeat the purpose of getting an IUD, but you could "double up" and have IUD + barrier protection (i.e. condom)

copper IUD - 99.4% effective
hormonal IUD (mirena) - 99.8% effective
condom - 82-98% (typical-perfect use) effective

Assuming barrier and IUD are independent: (.2%)(18%) or (.2%)(2%)
0.004%-0.036% chance of pregnancy in any given year

The effectiveness is always per year - probability of getting pregnant in, say, a 15 year window with a Mirena would be around 3% (binomial distribution). It's still the most effective measure if you only use one method, and way better than something like perfect condom use (26% chance of at least one pregnancy in 15 years with PERFECT use).

Lol, thanks for running the numbers. I think I can live with the 3%.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: frugalamber on May 30, 2014, 12:39:07 PM
I've had my DivaCup for five years now and love it. Has anyone replaced theirs from it just being old? On the website they used to say you could wait 10 years to replace it, but now it says you should replace it once a year. Mine seems to still be going strong but I'm curious when I should get a new one. Anyone else experience this?

I just got a new one after 3 years after reading the recommendation too. My old one is also fine and completely usable but yellowed a bit. Seriously, i had such good experience with Diva cup, not sure why it is not more mainstream.
My cramps and backaches on first 2 days have reduce so much after the use of diva cup that sometimes i forget ladies still have cramps.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: frogger on May 31, 2014, 06:24:44 PM
I love mine (DivaCup) and I'll never go back to tampons/pads. I think I've used it for a little over a year, and while the learning curve was a bit steep that first cycle and the stem was pinchy until I trimmed it, it's one of the better purchases I've ever made. I use them with reusable cloth pantyliners (Party in My Pants) as backup and I only had a bad leak once--no more inversion poses in yoga on the first couple of cycle days. :P

I got mine via Amazon. Never seen them in stores, though also haven't looked.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: HSLmom on May 31, 2014, 07:37:17 PM
I love mine :) If it's uncomfortable you might want to try 'kegaling' it up there, I have to do that to get it where it should be, then it stays no problem.

I use a cloth pad as backup on heavy flow days.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: ABC123 on May 31, 2014, 08:04:53 PM
I love my D C also. I wear cloth liners as backup as I do get leaks occasionally, but I also always wore a pad with a tampon as I got leaks with that so maybe I am just shaped weird. I have been using mine about 3 years. I have had it almost 5 years. Used. It one month, then got preggo sooner than planned so it got put away for a while. Most of the time I do not feel it at all. But every once in a while I just cannot get it to go in right no matter what I do, so I still keep some sposie fem prods on hand just in case.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: exceljunkie on May 31, 2014, 09:21:08 PM
Just wondering, have any of you ladies told any other friends about menstrual cups? I have a small group of friends that all know--it came up in conversation this weekend, but I'm not sure about the others. Is this something you would ever bring up?
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: PMG on June 01, 2014, 07:18:51 AM
While we're on the subject...

I've used one for a while.  Still adjusting.  Skeeved out by cleaning it.  Anyone care to share their habits? During cycle and after? I have a rainbow cup and they recommend boiling it after each cycle.  Do you keep an extra kettle designated for your cup?  I keep imagining different scenarios.  "No honey, don't cook pasta in that pan.  That's what I sanitize my bloody silicone in..." 
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: BPA on June 01, 2014, 07:26:49 AM
I wanted to get one, but had nearly all my cervix removed four years ago.  I've been told that it might not work for me because of that.

Has anyone had success with a cup in my situation?
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: Zaga on June 01, 2014, 08:24:12 AM
I did some rather extensive research before buying a cup, because I'm a very small woman, inside and out.  I ended up getting a Lunette size small, as it was the smallest on the market in 2007.  Love it!  I've been using it since, and it's amazing!  I think it was $45 including shipping, best money I've ever spent.

Later I decided to get a backup cup, and went with a Ladycup small from France, they had a 2 pack deal going on, so my best friend and I each got one.  They worked out to $39 each including shipping.  I'm not quite as crazy about this one, it's okay and works, but it's not as great as the Lunette.  The silicon of the Ladycup is sort of slippery and hard to grip, which makes removal difficult at times.

For cleanup, at the end of each cycle I soak my cup in a 50:50 mixture of hydrogen peroxide and water overnight.  This bleaches out any blood stains and the cup looks new again.  I never boil them, I figure the hydrogen peroxide does a good enough job of sterilizing.  7 years and I have had no trouble with infections or anything using this method.

I do tell friends about the cup, with mixed reactions.  Some think it is the most awesome idea ever, and others are totally grossed out.  At least I try!  One friend who was totally grossed out at first *may* be coming around.  I don't bug her or anything, I only mentioned it once, but she has brought it up again as a possibility for her.  Sometimes it just takes some time to get used to the idea of something so very different from typical.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: mango on June 01, 2014, 10:54:36 AM
I bought my first cup, a DivaCup on amazon. 6 months in I accidentally dropped it in the toilet and decided to buy the Lunette cup (blue) with some Amazon credit.

I wish I had known about cups earlier in life, would have saved me so much hassle. I've brought it up to a few girlfriends and now they're considering cups. Woohoo!

edit--

I also have never boiled my cup. I take it out at the end of the day and empty it, I'm not really grossed out, its just blood. Wash with some soap and then pop it back in again in the shower. At the end of my period I just wash it again with soap/water and then I pour some alcohol over it and/or hydrogen peroxide (separately) and let it soak/sit for a minute or so. 2+ years, so far so good! Really love not having to buy pads/tampons and not having to take out the trash so often.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: exceljunkie on June 02, 2014, 09:56:55 AM
I keep imagining different scenarios.  "No honey, don't cook pasta in that pan.  That's what I sanitize my bloody silicone in..."

Hilarious!

I do tell friends about the cup, with mixed reactions.  Some think it is the most awesome idea ever, and others are totally grossed out.  At least I try!  One friend who was totally grossed out at first *may* be coming around.  I don't bug her or anything, I only mentioned it once, but she has brought it up again as a possibility for her.  Sometimes it just takes some time to get used to the idea of something so very different from typical.

Thanks for sharing. I'm just thinking about  my off the wall reactions (I tend not to have too many filters) to my friends suggestions and how often I come around.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: windawake on June 03, 2014, 08:41:43 AM
While we're on the subject...

I've used one for a while.  Still adjusting.  Skeeved out by cleaning it.  Anyone care to share their habits? During cycle and after? I have a rainbow cup and they recommend boiling it after each cycle.  Do you keep an extra kettle designated for your cup?  I keep imagining different scenarios.  "No honey, don't cook pasta in that pan.  That's what I sanitize my bloody silicone in..."

I should probably boil mine after each cycle, but I don't. It's usually every other since I don't want my roommate to be home while I'm doing it. I boil it for the required 20 minutes in a normal pot, take it to the bathroom, put a little castile soap on a rag, and scrub it with the rag. It's the friction of the rag that really gets it clean. Before I discovered that, it was always discolored. I also use a Q-tip to clean out the stem and toothpicks to poke out any residue in those little holes around the rim. It's not perfect, since mine is kinda old, but it looks pretty damn good for a 5-year-old DivaCup once I'm done.

In light of the fact that people eat their own placenta, I think it's okay to boil a DivaCup, wash the pot thoroughly, and use it for food.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: rocksinmyhead on June 03, 2014, 09:05:09 AM
In light of the fact that people eat their own placenta, I think it's okay to boil a DivaCup, wash the pot thoroughly, and use it for food.

ROFL!!! I'm with ya. I still wait until my boyfriend is out of the house to boil mine though... shhh he doesn't know :) Also I'm going to have to try your rag trick because I have a hard time getting rid of the discoloration on mine!

I think I've talked to friends about it, I don't really remember. My friends are a pretty open bunch. I actually heard about it initially from my fellow summer camp counselors back in the day so I'm really glad they were fine talking about it! I've definitely talked to my mom and sister about it and I think my sister might finally be ready to get on the wagon... she thought it sounded kinda gross/weird at first (as most do) but I pointed out that I actually find it less gross in a way because you don't have bloody tampons sitting around in your trash can, and you never again have to open up those nasty little boxes in public restrooms. Eeeeuuuuuggghh.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: BrakeForTurtles on June 03, 2014, 11:20:24 AM
In terms of cleaning, I soak my cup in a 50:50 mixture of hydrogen peroxide and water for an amount of time (it's clean in a matter of hours), and this brings it back to new. I have a habit of forgetting though, so I probably only get around to doing it a few times a year. Otherwise just soap and warm water at the end of each cycle before putting it away (and between emptying it).

As for telling friends, I actually bought a friend one for her birthday (I knew she was interested so it wasn't as creepy as it sounds). Another friend was really grossed out by this though. Most of my friends don't get it at all, I've actually found guys are way more open to the idea, weirdly. Whenever I've brought it up with a boyfriend (to give them prior warning, just in case I forget to put it away after cleaning and they're like "What. The. Hell. Is. That?!") they've been really receptive to the idea.

And yes, I have to agree with the convenience. When I first started using it I remember having an epiphany as I was leaving the house and realised I no longer had to lug tampons around with me "just in case". Everything I needed was already inside me! Also there are no more issues with those pesky loos that don't have bins.

Oh and for Canadians, MEC (and probably other outdoors stores) stocks the DivaCup. I bought my Lady Cup online, they often run two-for-one deals etc.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: exceljunkie on June 03, 2014, 01:25:26 PM
I soak my cup in a 50:50 mixture of hydrogen peroxide and water for an amount of time (it's clean in a matter of hours), and this brings it back to new.

Going to try this next time round.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: ABC123 on June 03, 2014, 01:45:24 PM
Does hydrogen peroxide hurt the silicone at all?  I use Dr. Bronner's soap in a foamy soap pump for hand washing, and just use that for cleaning my diva cup as well.  I boil it every month or 2 at the end.  But using peroxide sounds like it would be a much better way of ensuring it really is clean.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: Zaga on June 03, 2014, 01:51:24 PM
Does hydrogen peroxide hurt the silicone at all?  I use Dr. Bronner's soap in a foamy soap pump for hand washing, and just use that for cleaning my diva cup as well.  I boil it every month or 2 at the end.  But using peroxide sounds like it would be a much better way of ensuring it really is clean.
It doesn't seem to hurt the silicon at all.  As I said above, I have been using hydrogen peroxide to soak my cup for about 7 years.  I think I would have noticed by now if it was causing any problems!
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: Kmp2 on June 09, 2014, 10:29:40 AM
I have been using my diva cup for 7 years - I sized up from size 1 to 2, when it started to leak about 4 months before I turned 30. I trimmed the stem down as small as it could go and it was so much more comfortable. I bought my SIL one, because she teaches sex ed in school - seriously luna pads and diva cups should be covered! Silly Tampax and Always sponsoship... She has yet to use it, but she has been pregnant or breastfeeding for the last 3 years...

As for cleaning I rinse with water daily during use, and wash with soap and water after a cycle. Every few months I boil it for 20 minutes - but I don't even wash the pot afterwards, 20 minutes of boiling water will kill anything - so I just rinse it out and put it back in the cupboard... I have backpacked, and boiled water for drinking, then drank it with the tiny dead buggies still floating in it so I get if that grosses some people out.

I have some super eco-green friends that refuse to even try it??? and some others that jump right on the band wagon that I didn't think would even like to hear about it. I couldn't predict who would even be open to it - so I mention it to everyone once, but that's it.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: rocksinmyhead on June 09, 2014, 12:50:43 PM
In terms of cleaning, I soak my cup in a 50:50 mixture of hydrogen peroxide and water for an amount of time (it's clean in a matter of hours), and this brings it back to new. I have a habit of forgetting though, so I probably only get around to doing it a few times a year. Otherwise just soap and warm water at the end of each cycle before putting it away (and between emptying it).

As for telling friends, I actually bought a friend one for her birthday (I knew she was interested so it wasn't as creepy as it sounds). Another friend was really grossed out by this though. Most of my friends don't get it at all, I've actually found guys are way more open to the idea, weirdly. Whenever I've brought it up with a boyfriend (to give them prior warning, just in case I forget to put it away after cleaning and they're like "What. The. Hell. Is. That?!") they've been really receptive to the idea.

And yes, I have to agree with the convenience. When I first started using it I remember having an epiphany as I was leaving the house and realised I no longer had to lug tampons around with me "just in case". Everything I needed was already inside me! Also there are no more issues with those pesky loos that don't have bins.

Oh and for Canadians, MEC (and probably other outdoors stores) stocks the DivaCup. I bought my Lady Cup online, they often run two-for-one deals etc.

yeah, my boyfriend was way less grossed out by it than I thought he would be. he actually thinks it's pretty hilarious and interesting, and makes jokes about it being a vampire shot glass (which even grosses ME out, LOL)
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: SisterX on June 09, 2014, 05:38:48 PM
I second both the Diva Cup (or any menstrual cup, but that's what I have) and the IUD.  Why didn't anyone tell me about these options before?

I will say, the IUD (ParaGard or whatever it is - non-hormonal) has made my period way heavier.  It might be because I'm still breastfeeding, but ever since I got it implanted I've had periods heavy enough that it requires me to empty the cup about every 4 hours during the day for a couple of days.  On the other hand, I've had very little cramping and if heavy bleeding is the worst that can be said for the IUD (as opposed to all of the AWFUL symptoms I had while on the pill) bring it on.

I do tell some friends.  Mostly if the topic comes up in conversation somehow ("Ugh, I hate getting my period!") but that gets less and less as we ladies grow out of our 20s.  But since I heard about the Cup from a friend, I figure I should pass the info along to others.  :)
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: saveandinvest on June 09, 2014, 06:27:40 PM
I found out about the menstrual cup two days ago reading a book on frugality.
When I came across this idea, I was completely blown away, I wish I had known earlier!! After going through the pain of using and carrying around napkins and tampons, worrying about blood stained sheets, feeling guilty over piles of trash each month, I am glad I found an alternative at last.
I ordered it immediately on amazon and cannot wait to try it!
Though changing it in the public bathroom will be a challenge so It would be great if you could share your tricks/ideas with us :)
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: monkey on June 09, 2014, 10:24:54 PM
I found out about the menstrual cup two days ago reading a book on frugality.
When I came across this idea, I was completely blown away, I wish I had known earlier!! After going through the pain of using and carrying around napkins and tampons, worrying about blood stained sheets, feeling guilty over piles of trash each month, I am glad I found an alternative at last.
I ordered it immediately on amazon and cannot wait to try it!
Though changing it in the public bathroom will be a challenge so It would be great if you could share your tricks/ideas with us :)

I have a couple Diva Cups and a couple different Melunas and have been using them for a few years now. (I prefer the Diva Cup to the Meluna because it's made of a slightly softer material, so it's easier to fold and more comfortable to put in). I bought 3 of the cups online, and one in a large chain drugstore. It did take me awhile to learn how to put it in so it'd be comfortable and not leak, so if you're less-than-dextrous like me, I'd recommend wearing pads as backup until you get the hang of it. I definitely wouldn't recommend changing the cup in a public bathroom until you've mastered it.  The cups are big enough that most women can easily go 8-12h between changes of the cup, so if you're working, you can do it before you leave and after you get back.

There are actually menstrual cup communities (believe it or not) that have way more info that anyone would ever want or need about their cup. :D I found this one useful: http://menstrual-cups.livejournal.com. It covers different folds, cleaning methods, troubleshooting, etc., and if you can't find the info you need you can just ask.

I also have a copper IUD. I don't think my periods are heavier but the cramping definitely is. I'm too forgetful for pills, though, and I'd rather be crampy than deal with the side effects from hormonal BC. :)
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: sheepstache on June 09, 2014, 11:52:12 PM
Yes, just like overconsumption, I feel like there's a negative cycle (ha) with tampon/pad alternatives.  The alternative is in the minority so people are less comfortable talking about it, therefore fewer people know about it, therefore it becomes even more of a minority, etc.

So I say, talk about it just to spread the word.  I only ever knew women who talked about it because they had problems with traditional methods (too heavy, cramping, etc.) and I figured since those methods worked fine for me, it wasn't worth the bother of changing.  But the cup is totally more comfortable!  (Possibly TMI, but there's a great advantage if you have light periods because you can empty it out and immediately put it back in, whereas with tampons, taking one out tends to leave things, um, kind of too... dry to immediately put another one in.)

That's good advice from Monkey about taking advantage of the 8-12 hours between changes so you can just do it at home when you first start.

Funny story about that and male attitudes.  When I got it I was telling my SO about how awesome it is and for some reason something I say makes him think I haven't emptied it out that day and he's like, "You have to empty it out at least every twelve hours."
And I'm like, "Oh, I know, I did--wait, how do you know that."
"I was, uh, in the bathroom and needed some reading material."
"So you chose my menstrual cup instructions."
"It was that or the Ayn Rand book you had in there."
Okay, well, maybe it's not that funny.  I thought it was funny.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: lifejoy on June 10, 2014, 06:29:16 AM
Yes, just like overconsumption, I feel like there's a negative cycle (ha) with tampon/pad alternatives.  The alternative is in the minority so people are less comfortable talking about it, therefore fewer people know about it, therefore it becomes even more of a minority, etc.

So I say, talk about it just to spread the word.  I only ever knew women who talked about it because they had problems with traditional methods (too heavy, cramping, etc.) and I figured since those methods worked fine for me, it wasn't worth the bother of changing.  But the cup is totally more comfortable!  (Possibly TMI, but there's a great advantage if you have light periods because you can empty it out and immediately put it back in, whereas with tampons, taking one out tends to leave things, um, kind of too... dry to immediately put another one in.)

That's good advice from Monkey about taking advantage of the 8-12 hours between changes so you can just do it at home when you first start.

Funny story about that and male attitudes.  When I got it I was telling my SO about how awesome it is and for some reason something I say makes him think I haven't emptied it out that day and he's like, "You have to empty it out at least every twelve hours."
And I'm like, "Oh, I know, I did--wait, how do you know that."
"I was, uh, in the bathroom and needed some reading material."
"So you chose my menstrual cup instructions."
"It was that or the Ayn Rand book you had in there."
Okay, well, maybe it's not that funny.  I thought it was funny.

Haha good story about the SO! Made me chuckle :)
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: rocksinmyhead on June 10, 2014, 06:47:31 AM
Funny story about that and male attitudes.  When I got it I was telling my SO about how awesome it is and for some reason something I say makes him think I haven't emptied it out that day and he's like, "You have to empty it out at least every twelve hours."
And I'm like, "Oh, I know, I did--wait, how do you know that."
"I was, uh, in the bathroom and needed some reading material."
"So you chose my menstrual cup instructions."
"It was that or the Ayn Rand book you had in there."
Okay, well, maybe it's not that funny.  I thought it was funny.

LOL!!! I found it hilarious :) those dudes can really be surprising with their interest level in various womanly issues!
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: fallstoclimb on June 10, 2014, 10:00:06 AM
yeah, my boyfriend was way less grossed out by it than I thought he would be. he actually thinks it's pretty hilarious and interesting, and makes jokes about it being a vampire shot glass (which even grosses ME out, LOL)

LOL.  omg that is so gross. 
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: bogart on June 10, 2014, 12:29:18 PM
I used both a diaphragm and a cervical cup (not together) for contraception back in the day, and the diaphragm (not the cup) for menstruation.  It was great.  Maybe 5 years ago I got a Diva cup and I just never really liked the thing (also how I felt about my cervical cup, which is a similar design).  Hard to insert, hard to remove, then one day I dropped it down a porta-potty by mistake, so that was pretty much that.

Then I discovered the Instead cup, which is a LOT more like a diaphragm, and that's my current system.  They're supposedly "disposable," but I haven't disposed of one yet, just wash with soap and water same as I did with all those other tools, and reuse (I've never boiled any of them and doubt the Instead would survive it).  And count me among the fans of the "take it out in the shower" method.  Sure, it's got a bit of a Psycho look to it, but it's by far the easiest context to deal with the mess, IMHO (porta-potties, OTOH, are at the low end of this scale, even ignoring the dropping it problem).

For public restrooms:  wipe out thoroughly with toilet paper, wrap, and stash in your purse, using another clean one until you get to a private location for washing the cup with soap and water.  A nice thing about Instead is that you get a 6-pack for not much more than $6 (see e.g. Amazon), so you can keep one stashed in your car bicycle, one in your purse, one in your office, and yes, carry a spare on you when you're out and about.  Though I find I rarely need to change mine other than a.m. / p.m.

Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: exceljunkie on June 11, 2014, 09:30:45 AM
I used both a diaphragm and a cervical cup (not together) for contraception back in the day, and the diaphragm (not the cup) for menstruation.  It was great.  Maybe 5 years ago I got a Diva cup and I just never really liked the thing (also how I felt about my cervical cup, which is a similar design).  Hard to insert, hard to remove, then one day I dropped it down a porta-potty by mistake, so that was pretty much that.

Then I discovered the Instead cup, which is a LOT more like a diaphragm, and that's my current system.  They're supposedly "disposable," but I haven't disposed of one yet, just wash with soap and water same as I did with all those other tools, and reuse (I've never boiled any of them and doubt the Instead would survive it).  And count me among the fans of the "take it out in the shower" method.  Sure, it's got a bit of a Psycho look to it, but it's by far the easiest context to deal with the mess, IMHO (porta-potties, OTOH, are at the low end of this scale, even ignoring the dropping it problem).

For public restrooms:  wipe out thoroughly with toilet paper, wrap, and stash in your purse, using another clean one until you get to a private location for washing the cup with soap and water.  A nice thing about Instead is that you get a 6-pack for not much more than $6 (see e.g. Amazon), so you can keep one stashed in your car bicycle, one in your purse, one in your office, and yes, carry a spare on you when you're out and about.  Though I find I rarely need to change mine other than a.m. / p.m.

Thanks! I might look into this if anything happens to my Divacup (I keep a couple of pads as backups at the moment). It's such a wonderful thing that I don't have to keep going out and buying this stuff regularly anymore!
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: BrakeForTurtles on June 13, 2014, 11:26:31 AM
In terms of changing over in public, I try to find an all-in-one washroom with a sink so I can rinse it out and put it back in. Otherwise at a pinch a wipe out with loo paper can tide me over, but it's not ideal. I definitely prefer changing it in the shower; it's easier in terms of rinsing and disposal, and I can get into a better position for putting it back in. Maybe carry a stash of baby wipes or similar if you're in that situation often, but I find I rarely need to change it while I'm out and about. Having reusable cloth pads as back-up certainly helps.

Second for that menstrual cup blog/forum. When I was first looking into them I found that a fascinating resource. People do go all out, any question you could possibly have has been dissected in full somewhere on there. I especially found the different folding methods helpful.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: exceljunkie on June 13, 2014, 12:42:01 PM
I found out about the menstrual cup two days ago reading a book on frugality.
When I came across this idea, I was completely blown away, I wish I had known earlier!! After going through the pain of using and carrying around napkins and tampons, worrying about blood stained sheets, feeling guilty over piles of trash each month, I am glad I found an alternative at last.
I ordered it immediately on amazon and cannot wait to try it!
Though changing it in the public bathroom will be a challenge so It would be great if you could share your tricks/ideas with us :)

Which book was this? I've yet to find one that mentioned menstrual cups :)
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: saveandinvest on June 19, 2014, 08:30:15 AM
I found it in the frugal living for dummies!
http://www.amazon.com/Frugal-Living-Dummies-Deborah-Taylor-Hough/dp/0764554034

I finally received my cup and cannot wait to try it!!
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: skandrae on June 19, 2014, 03:40:35 PM
I've had my Diva Cup for eight and a half years now, and I love it. I made some reusable pads to go with it, because of crazy heavy flow/laughing/sneezing, and I haven't looked back.

I had one period that came on early when I was away from home and I had to buy tampons and pads, and it was the worst two days I could remember since my pre-DC days.

I should have been saving up my unspent feminine hygiene money since 2006 - what a stash I would have by now!
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: windawake on June 20, 2014, 08:37:37 PM
Another thing I think I should mention on this thread is using a sea sponge during period sex. You can get them as natural/reusable alternatives to tampons online or at natural foods cooperatives. I put it in before a date and leave it in during sex. The nice thing is that it blocks blood but allows for natural lubrication. There have been times when I haven't told the guy I'm dating that it's in there and he doesn't even notice. It is a little hard to get it out if your period is pretty light, and it's kind of gross if you're not using condoms. I've done both, though, and it's not a big deal either way. I keep intending to sew a string into mine for easier removal and keep forgetting.

Anyways, this strategy totally improved my sex life. I've been doing it for years and don't really know what other ladies do on their periods for sex besides abstain (yeah right) or just make a mess (ew).
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: cbgg on June 24, 2014, 06:28:01 PM
I used a Diva cup for years.  Bought it online for ~$35 and it seems like it will last...forever?

Four years ago I got a Progesterone Only IUD (Mirena) and now I don't have to deal with that anymore.  So that's pretty excellent.  But the cup is vastly superior to other products.  Cheaper, cleaner, safer, and only needs to be dealt with 2x per day.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: bicoastalblues on June 25, 2014, 12:33:05 PM
Just wondering, have any of you ladies told any other friends about menstrual cups? I have a small group of friends that all know--it came up in conversation this weekend, but I'm not sure about the others. Is this something you would ever bring up?

I love my Diva cup, I've had mine for about 3 years now can hardly feel mine when it's in. So I told one friend who was interested about it but she gets a lot of leakage issues so she's not into it. I wish I could tell more people but the gross out factor made some friends uncomfortable. I can't imagine going back to pads or tampons though, those seem like they're far more unsanitary now!

When I change it at work I usually tip the contents into the toilet, wrap it in a bit of tissue, go to the sink to wash it out and then go back to the stall to put it back in. It's a bit more complex but not having to change a tampon several times a day is so worth it. I find it's also easier to change it when I shower since it all goes down the drain anyway and you can wash the cup and replace before you get out.

I'm curious about the half hydrogen peroxide and water trick. I usually just put it in the sink with the stopper up and pour boiling water over it when I finish my cycle and rinse it with hand soap and water during.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: exceljunkie on June 25, 2014, 01:39:21 PM
I found it in the frugal living for dummies!
http://www.amazon.com/Frugal-Living-Dummies-Deborah-Taylor-Hough/dp/0764554034

I finally received my cup and cannot wait to try it!!

Thanks, I'll be adding this to my library list! Hope all goes smoothly with the new cup. It wasn't very comfortable at first (I was using pads back then, not tampons), then I tried it again a year or two later and have never looked back. Also, I know there are resources out there, but I didn't know how to place it properly before and had leakage issues, but now that I know, it works great.



 
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: GeneralJinjur on July 01, 2014, 10:04:13 AM
If trimming the stem off doesn't help, you can also flip the cup inside out and use it that way. I have a few friends who do this with their Diva Cup and they are now as happy with it as I am. I bought my first cup almost 10 years ago and you couldn't pay me to go back to pads or tampons!
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: KarenK on July 01, 2014, 11:22:49 AM
Oh my, I love this thread! Signed up for my account today to put up a Ting referral credit post and then I saw this...

I am not a fan of the Diva cup, found it to be super uncomfortable and difficult to use, but I did only give it a few days and didn't try much "tweaking" with it.  I use homemade cloth pads now and love them! As an added benefit that I don't think I saw mentioned, avoiding commercial pads/tampons will reduce the volume and duration of flow for many women and can help alleviate cramping and pain.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: MrsPotts on July 03, 2014, 02:06:09 PM
An ablation is pretty nifty, too.  ;)
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: MBot on July 06, 2014, 12:06:36 PM
For discomfort with the DC, make sure the "tail" bit is trimmed very close. If any is left besides a tiny bit to grab onto it can chafe.

Other than that bit, the DC is great. Bought one from a health food store and I've replaced it twice in six years. (Left one in a travel bag and threw it out, another I had for a few years and wasn't sure it was able to be getting fully cleaned when I had a couple yeast infections. Better to infrequently replace than worry beyond reasonable cleaning I think.

The "all-in-one" washrooms with a sink when out are the best option for cleaning. But if none is available, washing my hands first, then going in the stall and just emptying it/wiping it out works fine. 
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: girly mustache on July 06, 2014, 12:16:16 PM
I love my Diva Cup (yes, I cut the stem) - only problem is that I sometimes forget I'm using one.... I wish I had found this 20 years ago!
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: Fleacircus on July 06, 2014, 07:19:25 PM
I really like the Diva cup, but it did have a significant learning curve.

If you have trimmed off the entire stem and it's still uncomfortable to wear, you can turn it inside out and use it that way, with the smooth side out.  This does make it more difficult to grasp.

If insertion is uncomfortable, try a different fold technique.  You can see demonstrations of these on Youtube.  I use a punch down fold, insert, and then do some hula hoop motions to ensure that it's fully open.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: exceljunkie on July 07, 2014, 02:46:31 PM
I use a punch down fold, insert, and then do some hula hoop motions to ensure that it's fully open.

ROFL :) that made my day
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: MicroRN on July 09, 2014, 10:30:42 AM
The comments here inspired me to give the Diva Cup another try.  I had my Mirena removed recently, and the cup is amazing.  It took some getting used to, but no leaks at all, even during a 12 hour shift. 
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: MBot on July 10, 2014, 08:46:45 PM
Mine needed replacing and I tossed it out six months ago. I was putting off getting one again because of the upfront cost.

This post reminded me I would be saving money over time, so I got another today! Thanks to those here for posting/discussing
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: MrsPete on July 16, 2014, 12:12:40 PM
I bought The Keeper about 20 years ago, and it was a wonderful money-saver.  I don't remember how I became aware of it, but I didn't buy it right away because I was trying to have a baby and didn't want to buy the "before baby" model and then have to change to an "after baby" model.  It cost about $30 then, so it did take some time to recoup the cost.   

After the baby was born and I was recovered, I bought The Keeper, and I had trouble learning to use it -- I realized later that I was having trouble inserting it and having it "open up".  The packaging suggested practicing on "light days", which was good advice.  I needed several months to learn to use it well, but once I did . . . well, I won't say I loved it because I've never loved any feminine hygiene product, but I found it much more convenient and comfortable than disposable products.  I often had slight pain with tampons, but since this does not touch the cervix, that was not a problem.  I could empty it once in the morning and once at night, and in between I didn't think about it at all.  Once I became proficient with The Keeper (and I emphasize again, that didn't happen overnight), I could do it in seconds and with no mess whatsoever -- literally, no mess.  The two secrets are to keep the whole procedure over the toilet and NOT to remove the product completely, but just to edge it out and spill the contents -- practice makes perfect.  I wouldn't wear it with white pants, but neither would I wear white pants "at that time of the month" with any other product. 

The best part:  No need to carry supplies. 
The worst part:  Never having been particularly regular, I was sometimes surprised at work and had to keep supplies in my desk.  Being forced to resort to disposable products on those days made me inordinately unhappy.

I used it with great success for 17-18 years.  I washed it by hand with dish soap at the end of each month's cycle, but never sanitized it in any way.  Oh, the money I didn't spend after that initial $30 investment! 

Then -- slowly -- I began to have some female issues, and suddenly The Keeper wasn't "enough" anymore -- and I had other problematic symptoms too.  Eventually surgery took away the whole problem, and I don't miss that part of my life AT ALL.  However, before those medical issues, The Keeper was an ideal product. 
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: imustachemystash on July 21, 2014, 02:01:53 PM
I had never heard of the Diva Cup until this thread.  I recently bought one and don't even realize it's in!  Thanks for this life changing recommendation.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: EarlyQuit on August 07, 2014, 05:59:39 PM
I also have never heard about this magical device until this thread. Bought it right after reading all of your posts, so far used it during one monthly cycle. It did take me a couple of days to figure some things out, but even with that learning curve, my life has been changed for the better forever. Every woman needs to know about this.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: thecornercat on August 07, 2014, 06:34:17 PM
Also love this thread! I discovered the Diva Cup in university as well. I used my first one for five years and decided to replace because of the yellowing. Purely cosmetic reasons: I'm sure it would have lasted longer. I ordered my current one from well.ca -- free shipping.


I use liners on the first couple days, though, just in case of leaks. I'm considering investing in washable cloth liners--there wouldn't be much washing involved, really, since I wear the liners for peace of mind. Just figured that's one more way of being good to the environment + plus saving $.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: sheepstache on August 07, 2014, 06:54:20 PM
I'm considering investing in washable cloth liners--

I have a name for those.  I call them black underwear.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: exceljunkie on August 08, 2014, 08:52:33 AM
Yes, just like overconsumption, I feel like there's a negative cycle (ha) with tampon/pad alternatives.  The alternative is in the minority so people are less comfortable talking about it, therefore fewer people know about it, therefore it becomes even more of a minority, etc.

So I say, talk about it just to spread the word.  I only ever knew women who talked about it because they had problems with traditional methods (too heavy, cramping, etc.) and I figured since those methods worked fine for me, it wasn't worth the bother of changing.  But the cup is totally more comfortable!  (Possibly TMI, but there's a great advantage if you have light periods because you can empty it out and immediately put it back in, whereas with tampons, taking one out tends to leave things, um, kind of too... dry to immediately put another one in.)

That's good advice from Monkey about taking advantage of the 8-12 hours between changes so you can just do it at home when you first start.

Funny story about that and male attitudes.  When I got it I was telling my SO about how awesome it is and for some reason something I say makes him think I haven't emptied it out that day and he's like, "You have to empty it out at least every twelve hours."
And I'm like, "Oh, I know, I did--wait, how do you know that."
"I was, uh, in the bathroom and needed some reading material."
"So you chose my menstrual cup instructions."
"It was that or the Ayn Rand book you had in there."
Okay, well, maybe it's not that funny.  I thought it was funny.

Hehehe...
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: exceljunkie on August 08, 2014, 08:57:46 AM
I had never heard of the Diva Cup until this thread.  I recently bought one and don't even realize it's in!  Thanks for this life changing recommendation.

Glad to hear it is working out for you!
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: Zaga on August 11, 2014, 06:01:48 AM
I'm considering investing in washable cloth liners--

I have a name for those.  I call them black underwear.
Ha ha, that's what I do for every day of the month!  Hate the look of stains.

Also, the washable cloth liners are super easy to make, 2 layers of flannel (dark color) in a circle with snaps sewed onto opposite sides.  If you want it thicker add another 1-2 layers of flannel or even a layer of an old towel just in the important area.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: Moonwaves on August 14, 2014, 05:43:37 AM
I've had my DivaCup for five years now and love it. Has anyone replaced theirs from it just being old? On the website they used to say you could wait 10 years to replace it, but now it says you should replace it once a year. Mine seems to still be going strong but I'm curious when I should get a new one. Anyone else experience this?
When I first starting looking into the Mooncup, they had a lifetime guarantee. Then it was changed to 10 years. Hadn't heard about it now being only one year. Even replacing it after 10 years sounded to me like a profit-driven idea. I've used mine for a few years now and am fast heading for 40 so I don't plan on getting another one (unless I lose it or something) - I reckon within another ten years or so I shouldn't need it at all. Although with all the fancy colours and variations available now, it's tempting sometimes. I quite fancy a deep purple one, actually.

By the way, there is another thread on this topic: http://forum.mrmoneymustache.com/share-your-badassity/for-the-ladies-only/ (http://forum.mrmoneymustache.com/share-your-badassity/for-the-ladies-only/) - is it possible to merge threads? This one didn't come up when I searched for Mooncup (I'd forgotten that Diva cup and Keeper are more popular brands in North America).
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: CheapskateWife on August 14, 2014, 06:24:04 AM
Thank you all for risking the accusation of "over-sharing" and starting this topic.  I had seen and even heard of these alternatives but hadn't really considered it an option until my MMM ladies chimed in.  Bought a DC on amazon and have now used it through 3 cycles now, and while heavy days are a little challenging in the leak department, the rest of the week is fantastic!  I'm swimming during my period...which I haven't done in easily decades!  MMM forum saved my summer! 

Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: calsurb on August 14, 2014, 07:59:43 PM
I scrub the bejesus out of my Diva Cup with the pumice stone in the shower. It gets clean as a whistle after each cycle. I wish there was a 'lady parts' campaign so we women could share freely with our friends and family about the awesome cups that are out there. It seems so hush hush nowadays.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: Chrissy on August 15, 2014, 03:53:23 PM
My behind got chafed/chapped from disposable pads, so I switched to cloth 4-5 years ago (from http://partypantspads.com/).  I heard about cups here, and decided to give it one a try.  After some research, I chose the Lunette, bought it from Amazon, and I've used it for two periods now.  It cuts way down on the changing and hand-laundering, so YAY.  Sure, I can feel it, but it's not bad.  Thank god for the stem, or that thing would be a permanent fixture!
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: Anatidae V on August 16, 2014, 03:54:12 AM
Another thing I think I should mention on this thread is using a sea sponge during period sex. You can get them as natural/reusable alternatives to tampons online or at natural foods cooperatives. I put it in before a date and leave it in during sex. The nice thing is that it blocks blood but allows for natural lubrication. There have been times when I haven't told the guy I'm dating that it's in there and he doesn't even notice. It is a little hard to get it out if your period is pretty light, and it's kind of gross if you're not using condoms. I've done both, though, and it's not a big deal either way. I keep intending to sew a string into mine for easier removal and keep forgetting.

Anyways, this strategy totally improved my sex life. I've been doing it for years and don't really know what other ladies do on their periods for sex besides abstain (yeah right) or just make a mess (ew).

Just thought I'd pipe up on the sex thing. I get crampier the more aroused I get when I have my period, so I'm a little jealous of you! I end up abstaining for most of my period.

Seeing another one of these threads has inspired me to get around to getting some reusable pads, don't think I'd find a cup thing comfortable as yet (tight pelvic muscles :( )
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: limeandpepper on August 16, 2014, 07:23:35 AM
I only started my foray into cups this year, but while it's not always the perfect solution, I have a good impression so far.

Seeing another one of these threads has inspired me to get around to getting some reusable pads, don't think I'd find a cup thing comfortable as yet (tight pelvic muscles :( )

If you ever decide to try, you may find these charts helpful for a quick overview, but also read individual cup reviews as well.
 
http://menstrualcupinfo.wordpress.com/cup-stiffness-comparison-chart/
http://menstrualcups.wordpress.com/2010/08/19/cup-size-comparison-charts/

I did a fair amount of reading about different cups, because I've never even ever successfully inserted a tampon, so I wanted to make sure I get something that I have the best chance of actually using. I ended up getting a small Fleurcup, it was one of the more affordable ones as well, they ship to Australia, and they have discounts from time to time. :)
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: MichikoMustache on August 17, 2014, 01:32:05 AM
I love my IUD and my cup! I have mirena now because although I loved non-hormonal IUDs the extra bleeding and cramps were terrible. I just rinse/empty my cup once a day in the shower then after my cycle I put my cup in a place where it can get tons of sun which bleaches it out and disinfects it too. I will try the hydrogen peroxide method too though.

And kinda off topic, but my new "feminine" money saving device is my creaclip! Beautiful, quick and easy layered haircuts at home! I paid $30 for the whole deal (with scissors  but not the creaclip ones) and it was paid for after one hair cut. (I used to pay $45/hair cut plus tip!)
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: myrax on August 17, 2014, 09:00:28 AM
Great thread! I wish that women talked more freely about diva cups to spread the word. I was surprised recently to find out all of colleagues use cups. My period snuck up one at work a few months ago, and since I didn't have my cup, I had to ask a colleague if she had a tampon. She said she used a cup, so I asked another female colleague, and got the same answer. It turned out pretty much my whole office uses cups, but one woman had a stash of tampons just in case. She actually hides them in the communal bathroom.

Quick note on IUDs- if you want to get the Paragard, make sure you aren't sensitive to copper first! I had a horrible two months with it in, trying to figure out what was causing my health problems. Copper sensitivity is very rare, but it's good to check first.

Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: Cheshires_Coins on August 26, 2014, 09:59:47 PM
I have a Jadelle implant in my arm (it's like a light version of the hormonal pill in two little rubbery matchsticks) that was entirely free (subsidised in NZ, only doctor's fees for implantation but I got it inserted at a free sexual health clinic) because I am terrible with timing and got major moodswings on account of fluctuating hormone levels throughout the day. It will last five years, and the new one can be inserted during the same procedure to remove the old one. Constant hormone levels, can hardly see or feel it, only mild bruising, and no copper lightning rod vagina for me! (this is me joking).
And I have just acquired a Lunette menstrual cup and a few reusable cloth liners, as I am going to be overseas for a few months, don't want to have to work out what brand of product works best, don't want to have to figure out how to dispose of them, sick of contributing to landfill. If I ever have a kid I'm doing the cloth nappies thing.
Also, to reiterate what someone has said above, soft sponges are great for sex during menstruation if you are a heavy bleeder (light bleed, they probably won't notice or care anyway). Haven't used a sea sponge yet, but have had success with 'soft tampons' which are disposeable synthetic sponges. A sea sponge is likely to be my next purchase.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: ENL on September 02, 2014, 08:21:42 PM
So excited to see this topic addressed.  I have been using a lunette cup (purchased from an eco-friendly baby/kid store) for about a year now and love it.  I have no one to tell because I only have a few female friends and they already think I'm some kind of hippie dippie weirdo, so my recommendation would likely just fall on deaf (and grossed-out) ears.

I see most things have already been covered in the comments but I wanted to add...

Leakage/Discomfort with Diva Cup:  If you like the idea of using a cup but have had leaking/discomfort with the Diva Cup, I recommend trying another brand before giving up.  Every vagina is special snowflake and what might work for one lady wouldn't necessarily work for another.  I believe that the Diva Cup is the among the biggest cups on the market and if it is too big for you it might be pushing too hard against the vaginal wall (discomfort) or not opening completely because there is not enough room (leakage).  Check out and compare the Diva Cup to other brands and pay attention to the diameter and length.  If you are a virgin, have a prolapsed uterus or another reason to not have much space down there, you might even want the ultra small Lunette "Model 1" or equivalent of another brand.

Feeling OH so much better:  I never noticed before switching to the cup, then switching back to tampons for a few months (to "finish up" my tampons) that the tampons had been chafing my insides every month and making me itchy and uncomfortable.  All of a sudden with the cup I felt "better" during my period and couldn't quite figure out why.  then I switched back and was like, "oh yeah I was itchy and sore before and never realized it because I thought that was the way it was with periods."  I literally do not even feel like I'm on my period anymore when I have the cup in.

Cleaning:  I clean the cup thoroughly with Cetaphil and then boil in a normal pot that we use for cooking.  If husband asks what I'm doing I just say "sterilizing stuff" and he just nods and stops caring.  I put the pot in the dishwasher afterwards and am not worried about it.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: Dumb blonde on September 03, 2014, 02:45:30 AM
I have both a Keeper and a Diva Cup. I stopped using the keeper because I was afraid I was going to develop an allergy for rubber (I have lots of allergies already, don't need another one, plus an allergy for rubber means an allergy for latex: condoms and so forth). I have used the Diva Cup on and off for about 8 years now. I don't use it at night (leakage). Sometimes I can wear it and not even notice it, in other months it's not comfortable and I can feel the stem. After reading these comments I'm going to trim it down again a little bit. The Diva Cup is ideal for swimming, since I had my 3rd child a tampon fills up with water when I swim, the Diva Cup doesn't.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: BooksAreNerdy on September 03, 2014, 12:54:57 PM
If trimming the stem off doesn't help, you can also flip the cup inside out and use it that way. I have a few friends who do this with their Diva Cup and they are now as happy with it as I am. I bought my first cup almost 10 years ago and you couldn't pay me to go back to pads or tampons!

I second this!!! I trimmed the stem on mine and if still felt too long. I turned it inside out and it is much more comfortable!!

To add to the list of gross things men say about them- my husband calls it a vagina bucket.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: jengod on September 08, 2014, 10:43:12 PM
Someone on another board mentioned that the "disposable" Instead Softcup is more than sturdy enough to be considered a durable good.

It can be washed out and reused like the Diva, etc.

CVS sells them for ~$10 for 12. If the $40 initial investment in the Diva seems like too much of a risk, you might want to try using a Softcup first.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: thecornercat on December 04, 2014, 09:30:07 AM
It's hard for me to think of a Diva Cup as a risk since I've been using it for more than six years now. I replaced it once for cosmetic reasons (it can get discolored) but I didn't even have to do that. Not sure this is available for Americans, but Canadians can order it online at well.ca -- free shipping.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: lemondirgopie on December 04, 2014, 11:36:53 AM
So there are actually a ton of other options aside from the Keeper and Diva Cup. I use the Fleurcup (http://www.fleurcup.com/en) which I prefer 1000x to the Diva Cup. I never could really get comfortable with the Diva Cup. Everyone is shaped differently and some people may find the Diva super comfortable, while other will need to do more research. I still keep the Diva as a emergency backup, but LOVE my Fleurcup.

Not sure if this has been mentioned yet, but there's a great group on Livejournal that discusses every detail about menstural cups you could imagine. See their sidebar for all the available cups out there: http://menstrual-cups.livejournal.com/

I also have an IUD (copper) and can't believe that more people don't use these options. It just makes life so much simpler.

Oh, and for anyone dealing with discolored cups: hydrogen peroxide is your friend. Soak for a few hours and it looks brand new.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: Chranstronaut on December 08, 2014, 11:46:19 PM
To add to the list of gross things men say about them- my husband calls it a vagina bucket.

I really want to make a penis wear mine like a little hat.  The Penile Toque.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: rocksinmyhead on December 09, 2014, 07:27:25 AM
To add to the list of gross things men say about them- my husband calls it a vagina bucket.

I really want to make a penis wear mine like a little hat.  The Penile Toque.

LOL!!!!

lemondirgopie, I'm intrigued that you use a menstrual cup AND the copper IUD. I've been curious about the copper IUD for a while since I love the idea of non-hormonal birth control that you don't really have to think about, but I always heard you weren't supposed to use a menstrual cup with an IUD, and I'm totally hooked on my Diva Cup and not going back :) did your gynecologist say anything about it/have you been using it a while with no problems??
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: lemondirgopie on December 11, 2014, 09:45:18 AM
lemondirgopie, I'm intrigued that you use a menstrual cup AND the copper IUD. I've been curious about the copper IUD for a while since I love the idea of non-hormonal birth control that you don't really have to think about, but I always heard you weren't supposed to use a menstrual cup with an IUD, and I'm totally hooked on my Diva Cup and not going back :) did your gynecologist say anything about it/have you been using it a while with no problems??

So when I was doing my research for the IUD I read lots of conflicting things on the internet. While there seemed to be a consensus that it was totally safe, there didn't seem to be a lot of research on it and there are still plenty of doctors that say otherwise. I asked my doctor at the time and she said it was safe. Since the copper IUD does initially make your period heavier (and therefore there is a SLIGHTLY higher risk that it could expel) I didn't use my cup for a little while after I got my IUD (a few months) until my period felt like it stabilized to a somewhat normal amount. I did have one scare where I thought that my IUD was expelling (this was about a year in) when I took out my cup at one point. A visit to the GYN for an ultrasound found that it was safe and sound.

I'm pretty convinced that, at least in my body, my IUD is well in there. I've since used a way of taking out the cup that reduces the suction on the cervix. Instead of just pulling it out, like I used to, I bear down then break the seal with a finger over the top of the rim. I've had the IUD for I think 6 years now and haven't had any problems, really.

That being said, the internet is absolutely filled with n=1 accounts (along with plenty of horror stories) and I realize that I'm just adding to that. Unfortunately the only way to figure out if it will work for you is to try it out. Do your research but take everything with a boulder of salt as it is extremely easy to get freaked out by people.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: SisterX on December 11, 2014, 11:03:27 AM
lemondirgopie, I'm intrigued that you use a menstrual cup AND the copper IUD. I've been curious about the copper IUD for a while since I love the idea of non-hormonal birth control that you don't really have to think about, but I always heard you weren't supposed to use a menstrual cup with an IUD, and I'm totally hooked on my Diva Cup and not going back :) did your gynecologist say anything about it/have you been using it a while with no problems??

I also have the copper IUD and use a cup.  I didn't even consider that they might be a problem together, but during the visit to my doc in which she inserted the IUD I mentioned that I use a cup and she didn't bring up any problems with that.  I've never had an issue with it.  As lemondirgopie says, I take care to break the seal before pulling it all the way out but that's about it, and I've had the IUD for about a year.
The IUD has made my periods much heavier, but I think some of that might just be that it's new, and some of it might be because I've been breastfeeding?  Not sure.  (Apparently there are some unfortunate women who get their periods back immediately after childbirth, and I am one of them.  Even breastfeeding didn't change that.)
I did have one check to make sure the IUD was still in place, but that's because I had a 2 1/2 week-long period and wanted to make sure I wasn't having a miscarriage or something.  (I wasn't, and it wasn't because of the IUD either.)

I got the copper IUD because hormonal birth control is absolutely miserable for me.  If that's the case for you too, it's worth looking into.  The heavier periods are well worth the trade-offs for me.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: Kaptain on June 20, 2015, 10:39:03 AM
I just ordered a MeLuna based on a friend's recommendation.  They have lots of different sizes and handle options, even a couple colors. 

I trialed the Instead Softcups for a few months and liked it (you're supposed to use it for one cycle then trash it - though I may have used it a bit longer) so felt ready to take the plunge with a longer term product.  I'm really psyched, and can't believe I'm only finding out about these at the age of 35!
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: mrshudson on June 20, 2015, 10:55:49 AM
I'm trying to convince all my friends to take it up, but doctors in Australia seem a little reluctant to prescribe the Mirena to women who haven't had children yet. I had zero issues but a few of my friends have been talked out of it in favour of Implanon or the plain old boring (and expensive, and tedious) Pill.

In the U.S. another IUD called Skyla is out, specifically for women who haven't had children yet. In theory it shouldn't be an issue because a simple ultrasound will reveal the dimensions of the uterus, allowing the doctor to assess the suitability of Mirena (or Skyla's) placement. IUDs hit two birds in a single stone - many, many women stop having periods altogether and experience no problems with it whatsoever except insertion cramping for a few hours. And you have your long term, hassle free birth control for several years.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: Zaga on June 20, 2015, 01:15:50 PM
I was reminded of this website by my friend a few days ago, thought I would share it.  It gives a review of just about every menstrual cup out there, from one blogger's point of view.  I was very surprised to see that there are something like 100 brands now available!

https://menstrualcups.wordpress.com/
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: CheapskateWife on June 21, 2015, 11:39:38 AM
Reposting to post some hints and ask a question...

First off, for a PSA, I have found that since adding a CalMagZinc supplement to my daily regime, my monthly cramps are non existent.  Nothing fancy, the walmart Nature's Bounty brand is what I buy.  Highly recommend to anyone to give a try! 

Now my question...as I'm gaining more experience with my Diva Cup, I'm finding that my heavy flow day (only one usually) simply overwhelms the cup.  Despite almost hourly emptying, I still have leakage and have to wear backup (hate!).  I have the larger model for women who have experienced childbirth so I'm at capacity for this device.  Does anyone have recommendation for a cup with larger capacity than the DC?

Thank you so much!  I was feeling so smug about being able to do anything during my period thanks to the DC, but this particular issue is ruining one day a month for me.

I wish I could give the MMM ladies a big hug for all the support and advice we have for one another!
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: Zaga on June 21, 2015, 03:10:35 PM
I think that one has close to the highest capacity that's out there.  Check the link I posted just above, she has a chart with all of the cups, including capacity.  One of the options is to sort the chart by capacity.

What I do on my heavy days because of leakage is I made my own reusable panty liners out of flannel and sew on snaps.  But my heavy days are not nearly as heavy as yours, i can make it 8 hours most of the time on my heaviest day.

I will try out that supplement, because I have just about the worst cramps imaginable.  I'm actually having a biopsy next month to try to figure out what is wrong with me.  I hope they find something and can fix it!
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: Cookie on June 21, 2015, 03:42:28 PM
I just  joined the bandwagon! I was nervous to try the cup, but it really does help with cramps!
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: Zaga on June 21, 2015, 04:21:05 PM
I just  joined the bandwagon! I was nervous to try the cup, but it really does help with cramps!
I really wish that had been the case for me.  I cry before my period because I know how much it's going to hurt, and nothing besides massive doses of painkillers helps :(
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: Cookie on June 21, 2015, 04:43:22 PM
Quote
I really wish that had been the case for me.  I cry before my period because I know how much it's going to hurt, and nothing besides massive doses of painkillers helps :(

Aw sorry :(. I'm on birth control which allows me to only have a period every other month. Without it, I'd have it every other week. I also take iron vitamins during the period which I hope helps, but who knows.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: CheapskateWife on July 01, 2015, 09:41:58 AM
As for birth control, I wanted something that was non-intrusive and didn't involve putting chemicals/hormones in my system. I thought that condoms were my only option until I came across LadyComp https://www.lady-comp.com/
 It's 99.3% effective and works by taking your basal body temperature (orally) each morning and comparing it against a huge set of stored data of other women's temps to determine when you are ovulating.  I would say that its downfalls are that it really only works for people in monogamous relationships and cost.  It's $485 so you need up front cash (probably not a problem for most people here) but it can be used for 10 years. I split the cost of mine with my partner, so if I actually use it for 10 years that comes out to a whopping total of $2 per month for each of us.

I'm glad this works for you...the data backing up this method's effectiveness for my case is starting driver's training tomorrow ;-)  YMMV
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: Grem on July 03, 2015, 12:19:45 PM
Hi,

I just stumbled upon this thread :)

I normally use pads. I can *feel* tampons when I try them to the point where I feel nauseous :/ Dr Google says I might have a sensitive cervix

I'm also shaped a bit weird, like a v instead of a o type shape...that means a tampon sits one side or the other and I get leaks...

Would a cup work for me? If I can feel a tampon would I be able to feel a cup? Would they even fit with my weird shape?

Thanks x
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: Zaga on July 03, 2015, 04:39:33 PM
Hi,

I just stumbled upon this thread :)

I normally use pads. I can *feel* tampons when I try them to the point where I feel nauseous :/ Dr Google says I might have a sensitive cervix

I'm also shaped a bit weird, like a v instead of a o type shape...that means a tampon sits one side or the other and I get leaks...

Would a cup work for me? If I can feel a tampon would I be able to feel a cup? Would they even fit with my weird shape?

Thanks x
It's hard to say, they don't work for everyone.  You could try the Instead disposable cup first, they are shaped sort of like a soft diaphragm.

I had trouble finding one that would work for me, my cervix is very low so I got a short cup and cut the stem as short as I could.  That worked for me, but barely.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: Basenji on July 14, 2015, 06:31:26 AM
Following
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: Restless Consumer on July 15, 2015, 01:01:31 PM
Last self-promotion link of the day. My wife wrote a post on this also. I have no input to provide personally.

http://www.offthecheapend.com/personal-care/menstrual-cups/
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: MBot on July 15, 2015, 03:11:12 PM
Hi,

I just stumbled upon this thread :)

I normally use pads. I can *feel* tampons when I try them to the point where I feel nauseous :/ Dr Google says I might have a sensitive cervix

I'm also shaped a bit weird, like a v instead of a o type shape...that means a tampon sits one side or the other and I get leaks...

Would a cup work for me? If I can feel a tampon would I be able to feel a cup? Would they even fit with my weird shape?

Thanks x

They sit super, super low (edit: super low compared to a tampon - they don't go up as far) so they won't be anywhere near the cervix. 

For the "seal" to work it just has to be able to pressure-fit against the entire perimeter, but that's usually not a problem with different shapes.

I use a DivaCup and cut the entire "stem" off so there isnt any external pressure or sensation from it either. The cup itself I can't feel at ALL once it's in. Its amazing.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: La Bibliotecaria Feroz on July 17, 2015, 02:43:30 PM
Hi,

I just stumbled upon this thread :)

I normally use pads. I can *feel* tampons when I try them to the point where I feel nauseous :/ Dr Google says I might have a sensitive cervix

I'm also shaped a bit weird, like a v instead of a o type shape...that means a tampon sits one side or the other and I get leaks...

Would a cup work for me? If I can feel a tampon would I be able to feel a cup? Would they even fit with my weird shape?

Thanks x

They sit super, super low (edit: super low compared to a tampon - they don't go up as far) so they won't be anywhere near the cervix. 

For the "seal" to work it just has to be able to pressure-fit against the entire perimeter, but that's usually not a problem with different shapes.

I use a DivaCup and cut the entire "stem" off so there isnt any external pressure or sensation from it either. The cup itself I can't feel at ALL once it's in. Its amazing.

I've always hated tampons, so I use washable menstrual pads instead of a cup. I know, it sounds gross, but I was already cloth diapering and that made it seem more normal, I guess.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: limeandpepper on November 23, 2015, 10:13:10 PM
Just thought I'd let anyone who might be interested know, I received an e-mail notifying me about a sale for Fleurcups until the end of this month, you can get 2 for 22 Euro, and delivery anywhere is 4 Euro. I think that is a pretty good price for these things. I am not affiliated with them but I purchased one last year which I found to be quite decent - it is the only one I've ever tried, and I understand that different brands suit different people due to size, shape, material thickness and flexibility.

Website:
http://www.fleurcup.com/en
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: Trouble on November 24, 2015, 02:28:28 AM
I'm another one in the 'yay, menstrual cups' camp. I've converted my sister and one of my friends to them. Been using them for years (before and then in between kids). So much money saved and I love how I can (after the first day) be entirely confident that there will be no leaks and I don't have to even think about it for 12 hours.  In my earlier drinking and partying days I would sometimes forget and go to sleep with one in, much safer than doing that with a tampon! (Though of course not recommended)

On the topic of the companies recommending replacing after 12mo,  I seem to recall (many years ago) reading about how this was more of a compliance thing than the companies actually thinking their product would only last that long.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: Zaga on November 24, 2015, 06:17:45 AM
You don't sleep with yours in?  Really?  I do all the time, and it's great!  I love the fact that I can be totally comfortable, no risk of TSS, and no risk of leaking as with pads that can slip to the side or front.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: justajane on November 24, 2015, 08:29:20 AM
Sleeping in one is one of the best parts. No fear of leaking. Can't they stay in for up to 12 hours?
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: Orvell on November 24, 2015, 08:33:17 AM
Sleeping in one is one of the best parts. No fear of leaking. Can't they stay in for up to 12 hours?
>___> I mean, you can keep it in as long as it's not leaking. At the end of my cycle, my cup stays in for 24 hours from one morning shower until the next, lol.
As to the replacing bit mentioned upthread. Nah, don't bother! I've had mine for 5+ years. It's discolored, but sound and rocking its job duties.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: jengod on November 24, 2015, 08:38:33 AM
Hey ladies, I just finished an excellent book called Waste and Want: A Social History of Trash, by Susan Strasser (Owl Books, 1999), and in light of menstrual cups being so popular amongst Mustachian gals and my Zero-Waste Home people, I thought I would share some interesting excerpts from a chapter about the rise of disposable-goods market in the 1920s:

"Commercial sanitary napkins had been available for decades, but they were by no means universal. Many women continued to fold  linen or cotton cloth into sanitary pads, a traditional product of the bricoleur sensibility, constructed at home and often from scraps. Some purchased fabric for the purpose, especially a textured material called 'birdseye' that was also used for diapers. Others selected cloth from the rag bag. They pinned these homemade pads into their underwear or held them to their bodies with belts and suspenders; they soaked soiled napkins, washed the blood out, and reused them. Some women who could afford it concocted homemade disposable pads instead, from cheesecloth, gauze, and surgical cotton.
...
Widespread use of disposable pads did not begin until Kimberly-Clark introduced Kotex in 1920. It was fabricated from cellucotton, a material the company had developed for bandages during World War I...at least one historian suggests that Kimberly-Clark was left at the end of the war with warehouses of the stuff and developed the product to exploit the surplus.
...
In 1924, the company moved the advertising account for its now successful product to the well-known Lord & Thomas agency, headed by Albert Lasker. According to his biographer, Lasker personally courted Kimberly-Clark, telling the inventor of cellucotton, 'The products that I like to advertise most are those that are only used once!' " (pp. 162-163)
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: startswithhome on November 26, 2015, 07:35:54 PM
Has anyone found Diva cups uncomfortable and then found success with another brand? I've had two kids, so I bought size two, but it's either too big or too firm. I'm 5'1" and have pretty narrow hips.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: Zaga on November 27, 2015, 07:18:45 AM
Has anyone found Diva cups uncomfortable and then found success with another brand? I've had two kids, so I bought size two, but it's either too big or too firm. I'm 5'1" and have pretty narrow hips.
Diva is one of the longest cups out there, plus that size rating for before and after childbirth, or before and after a certain age, is crap.  You are the size you are, end of story. 

I never tried a Diva, but I can tell you that that brand would never work for me, my cervix is just too low.  Plus despite the fact that I'm 35 (no children), I use a small cup, because I'm just a small woman on the inside.  My best friend is the same size as me and no children, but uses a large cup and the diva works okay for her.  My point is that how tall you, childbirth, and age are fairly irrelevant to the size cup you need.  I get sort of annoyed that the cup companies imply that this is the case.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: hobs42 on November 27, 2015, 01:12:06 PM
Hey ladies, I just finished an excellent book called Waste and Want: A Social History of Trash, by Susan Strasser (Owl Books, 1999), and in light of menstrual cups being so popular amongst Mustachian gals and my Zero-Waste Home people, I thought I would share some interesting excerpts from a chapter about the rise of disposable-goods market in the 1920s:

"Commercial sanitary napkins had been available for decades, but they were by no means universal. Many women continued to fold  linen or cotton cloth into sanitary pads, a traditional product of the bricoleur sensibility, constructed at home and often from scraps. Some purchased fabric for the purpose, especially a textured material called 'birdseye' that was also used for diapers. Others selected cloth from the rag bag. They pinned these homemade pads into their underwear or held them to their bodies with belts and suspenders; they soaked soiled napkins, washed the blood out, and reused them. Some women who could afford it concocted homemade disposable pads instead, from cheesecloth, gauze, and surgical cotton.
...
Widespread use of disposable pads did not begin until Kimberly-Clark introduced Kotex in 1920. It was fabricated from cellucotton, a material the company had developed for bandages during World War I...at least one historian suggests that Kimberly-Clark was left at the end of the war with warehouses of the stuff and developed the product to exploit the surplus.
...
In 1924, the company moved the advertising account for its now successful product to the well-known Lord & Thomas agency, headed by Albert Lasker. According to his biographer, Lasker personally courted Kimberly-Clark, telling the inventor of cellucotton, 'The products that I like to advertise most are those that are only used once!' " (pp. 162-163)

Thank you for the recommendation! Putting this on my reading list for sure.

Regarding telling friends:

I remind my friends about the epiphany many of them have had when moving from pads to tampons, and then explain that the second epiphany is the menstrual cup (I use the DivaCup) and they start to think about it...I have so far convinced one friend to make the change. Which isn't the highest success rate but I suppose I'm lucky my friends are willing to chat about it.

We should make a PSA to spread the word!
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: La Bibliotecaria Feroz on November 27, 2015, 09:14:42 PM
I'm starting to think about trying one. I've never really liked tampons but it's starting to bother me that it's so hard to ride my bike when I have my period (aside from the fact that I obviously can't wear padded bike shorts, the snaps on the reusable pads are uncomfortable).

Anyone want to recommend a brand for a very short, dainty lady?
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: rockstache on November 27, 2015, 09:22:49 PM

I'm starting to think about trying one. I've never really liked tampons but it's starting to bother me that it's so hard to ride my bike when I have my period (aside from the fact that I obviously can't wear padded bike shorts, the snaps on the reusable pads are uncomfortable).

Anyone want to recommend a brand for a very short, dainty lady?

I've only tried one, but it's a serious game changer. I'm small and haven't had a baby, and I got the Lena cup (small). The first cycle I wasn't completely convinced but over the course of the second cycle I really got used to it. I did cut the stem off after I was comfortable inserting and removing it. It's only $25 on Amazon, and I don't think I will ever go back to tampons.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: Trouble on November 28, 2015, 04:01:00 AM
You don't sleep with yours in?  Really?  I do all the time, and it's great!  I love the fact that I can be totally comfortable, no risk of TSS, and no risk of leaking as with pads that can slip to the side or front.

oh no sorry I meant I didn't empty it out before going to bed after having had it in all day. I LOVE the fact that I can sleep with itin, walk around the house nude, swim etc and no one would know.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: Zaga on November 28, 2015, 07:40:56 AM
I'm starting to think about trying one. I've never really liked tampons but it's starting to bother me that it's so hard to ride my bike when I have my period (aside from the fact that I obviously can't wear padded bike shorts, the snaps on the reusable pads are uncomfortable).

Anyone want to recommend a brand for a very short, dainty lady?
My first one was the Lunette small, which is still my favorite.  I bought a backup a few years back, a Lady Cup small, which I don't like as much mostly because the grip is hard to grab for removal.  If my Lunette ever dies (it's 8 years old I think and pretty discolored) I will replace with another Lunette.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: limeandpepper on November 28, 2015, 08:26:39 AM
I'm starting to think about trying one. I've never really liked tampons but it's starting to bother me that it's so hard to ride my bike when I have my period (aside from the fact that I obviously can't wear padded bike shorts, the snaps on the reusable pads are uncomfortable).

Anyone want to recommend a brand for a very short, dainty lady?

The Fleurcup (in a small) that I linked to earlier in this page works for me. I haven't tried any other brands, but for reference I have had no success with tampons, but found this easy in comparison.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: La Bibliotecaria Feroz on November 28, 2015, 09:44:30 AM
Thanks, ladies! I have been making note of your suggestions to research. More brand suggestions welcome!

I sort of feel guilty for turning my back on my reusable pads, which probably haven't paid for themselves. But I'm sure I will still use them on occasion.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: Zaga on November 28, 2015, 12:15:30 PM
Thanks, ladies! I have been making note of your suggestions to research. More brand suggestions welcome!

I sort of feel guilty for turning my back on my reusable pads, which probably haven't paid for themselves. But I'm sure I will still use them on occasion.
Here's a link to a website with more info than you probably need on every cup that she is aware of.  There are over 50 brands now in many countries.  About 1 page down on the left side is a link to a cup comparison chart, you should probably start there.

https://menstrualcups.wordpress.com/
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: YogiKitti on November 30, 2015, 12:33:51 AM
I have switched this year and am so glad I did! I bought the evacup because it was the lowest price on amazon. I was worried that it would be uncomfortable, but it is fine. It has even helped with my cramps, which used to be incredibly terrible.

I just want to tell the world about how amazing the cup is! Except it is kinda weird so I don't talk about it.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: La Bibliotecaria Feroz on November 30, 2015, 09:54:10 AM
Here's a link to a website with more info than you probably need on every cup that she is aware of.  There are over 50 brands now in many countries.  About 1 page down on the left side is a link to a cup comparison chart, you should probably start there.

https://menstrualcups.wordpress.com/

I couldn't find the chart but when I scrolled waaaaay down to her review of LenaCup, I found a 15% off discount code: OBSIDIAN.

Also, it told me I could have a $5.99 credit for Prime Pantry if I chose no-rush shipping.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: gaja on November 30, 2015, 11:12:13 AM
I used a Diva cup for years.  Bought it online for ~$35 and it seems like it will last...forever?

Four years ago I got a Progesterone Only IUD (Mirena) and now I don't have to deal with that anymore.  So that's pretty excellent.  But the cup is vastly superior to other products.  Cheaper, cleaner, safer, and only needs to be dealt with 2x per day.
I'm on a progesterone pill, and only have periods a couple of times a year. It is marvelous.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: La Bibliotecaria Feroz on November 30, 2015, 06:30:32 PM
I used a Diva cup for years.  Bought it online for ~$35 and it seems like it will last...forever?

Four years ago I got a Progesterone Only IUD (Mirena) and now I don't have to deal with that anymore.  So that's pretty excellent.  But the cup is vastly superior to other products.  Cheaper, cleaner, safer, and only needs to be dealt with 2x per day.
I'm on a progesterone pill, and only have periods a couple of times a year. It is marvelous.

I got pregnant (nonviable, so that was fun) on a nonhormonal IUD that fell partly out and progesterone makes me homicidal. So Mr. FP is snipped and I have to deal with my own unfettered cycles. Sigh. At least they're predictable these days.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: Bracken_Joy on November 30, 2015, 10:01:51 PM
I just wanted to jump in and say THANK YOU for the hydrogen peroxide/water trick. Total game changer. I've had my Diva for like 8 years now. I cleaned with soap and all that, but yeah... staining.

No more stains! I'm a happy camper now.

And re: bringing it up with friends. I have with a couple friends, but only when it has come up in due course. Ie- "do you have a tampon I could borrow?" "no actually, I use a cup, so I never have them on hand, sorry", or when they're discussing frustration with cramping/leaking/discomfort/whatever. Maybe people are more open with me about health stuff? But then, this totally happened even before I went to nursing school. Who knows.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: Dsteadma on November 30, 2015, 10:41:42 PM
Just started using mine a year ago and love it!! Most awkward night ever was cleaning it out in an outhouse in the dark.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: Kouhri on December 01, 2015, 01:05:29 AM
Just found out about menstrual cups from a friend, and super pleased to find this thread. I'm going to buy a couple of different brands (thanks Zaga for the link) and work out what's comfy for me. I'm so excited by this. I've always hated using pads and tampons I feel like it's such a waste. First time I think I've looked forward to a period.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: Anatidae V on December 01, 2015, 04:27:55 PM
It seems like a couple of people now have mentioned less cramping with a cup in. I might buy myself one for Christmas...
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: eostache on December 01, 2015, 08:24:22 PM
I just started using a cup this year. I'd heard of them before but didn't think much about them until a friend started talking to me about them. I'm in my 40s and wish I'd thought more of it years ago. I did a bunch of research on the Diva Cup and was a bit spooked by the reviews of women who had trouble removing them.

I decided to step in cautiously and cheaply by trying the Soft Cups (box of 14 for $6). They look large but seem to easily conform to any shape. After 8 months of use I really like them. They are supposed to be disposable but I use one for at least a few months at a time. I really like that I can put on in when I feel like my period may start in a day or two so I'm not caught unprepared. Then I can check it a few times to see if things started.

When flow is heavy they can leak a bit so I might use a light pad for a day or so while that is happening. The Soft Cup can be emptied some without taking it out (bear down on it while on the toilet). This is handy on a camping trip where I can leave it in for a couple of days and then do cleanup when I get home. The shower is the best place to take it out and clean it, especially during heavy flow. They can also be used during sex, usually neither of us can tell it's in there.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: CheapskateWife on December 02, 2015, 03:20:24 PM
Hmmmm....has anyone out there done the horizontal mambo with the diva cup in?  I'm thinking I'd trim the stem before even trying but holy cow that would be awesome.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: Orvell on December 02, 2015, 03:21:34 PM
Hmmmm....has anyone out there done the horizontal mambo with the diva cup in?  I'm thinking I'd trim the stem before even trying but holy cow that would be awesome.
I've masturbated with it in loads of time; just don't do internal too much and you're golden!
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: HappierAtHome on December 02, 2015, 03:43:55 PM
It seems like a couple of people now have mentioned less cramping with a cup in. I might buy myself one for Christmas...

I haven't experienced any change in cramping. YMMV.

Of course the convenience is still fantastic even with cramping.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: aetherie on December 02, 2015, 05:23:06 PM
Hmmmm....has anyone out there done the horizontal mambo with the diva cup in?  I'm thinking I'd trim the stem before even trying but holy cow that would be awesome.

The DivaCup leaves no room for anything else to fit in there, unfortunately! But I've heard the SoftCups are supposed to sit high enough that it might work? Not sure.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: Zaga on December 02, 2015, 05:45:20 PM
It seems like a couple of people now have mentioned less cramping with a cup in. I might buy myself one for Christmas...

I haven't experienced any change in cramping. YMMV.

Of course the convenience is still fantastic even with cramping.
Same, exactly what she said.

About the other question, no, I don't think sex would be possible with a cup in.  Well, not penetration at least.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: jengod on December 02, 2015, 06:51:27 PM
Hmmmm....has anyone out there done the horizontal mambo with the diva cup in?  I'm thinking I'd trim the stem before even trying but holy cow that would be awesome.

The DivaCup leaves no room for anything else to fit in there, unfortunately! But I've heard the SoftCups are supposed to sit high enough that it might work? Not sure.

I use a SoftCup and yes you can have sex with it. It's more like a diaphragm shape than the DivaCup and similar models.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: CheapskateWife on December 03, 2015, 08:02:22 AM
I was looking at the DC last night and thinking the same thing...it would need to go up much higher.  Maybe an experiment with the soft cup is in order....
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: francophile on December 13, 2015, 05:30:44 PM
I switched to reusable menstrual products about 4 months ago and really can't imagine going back to disposables. Not only is it cheaper in the long run, it's more comfortable and way better for the environment. Also I'm skeeved out by the chemicals in tampons and disposable pads.

I have a Lena cup (bought on Amazon) and several cloth pads purchased from Etsy. I also have a pair of Thinx underwear, but find them a bit expensive for what they are. The cup is above & beyond my favorite. I just took a beach vacation and of course got my period on the first day of it. The cup was a lifesaver. You can leave it in 12 hours and easily swim in it. With tampons I would have been changing them every 2-3 hours and would have awkwardly been dealing with the trash associated with them.

I do leak a little on the heaviest days, and when not swimming I pair the cup with a cloth liner.

Highly recommend the Lena and am also curious about the Ruby, Eva, and Meluna cups. I believe these are all on Amazon as well. For cloth pads, I've loved Yurtcraft, Novel Red, and RainbowsGrace on Etsy. If you get both cup and pads, or just one or the other, it's a small investment for something that will last years.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: pompera_firpa on December 14, 2015, 02:13:23 PM
I adore the fact that this is something I can talk about somewhere! I never got around to getting a menstrual cup before getting my Mirena IUD (and ending up with incredibly low-flow periods), but I got tired of having to deal with pantiliners and went with reusable cotton ones. I've been assuming that a cup would be uncomfortable or useless due to the low-flow thing, but this thread has me wondering if I was wrong. Anyone with experience in that department?
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: Zaga on December 15, 2015, 10:00:14 AM
I adore the fact that this is something I can talk about somewhere! I never got around to getting a menstrual cup before getting my Mirena IUD (and ending up with incredibly low-flow periods), but I got tired of having to deal with pantiliners and went with reusable cotton ones. I've been assuming that a cup would be uncomfortable or useless due to the low-flow thing, but this thread has me wondering if I was wrong. Anyone with experience in that department?
Not with the Mirena, but my periods have always been extremely light after the first 2 days, and I also have up to 10 additional "spotting" days during the month (yes, being treated).  I find the cup works absolutely great for these days!

*Though you may forget it's in there and have to go take it out for romantic interludes.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: La Bibliotecaria Feroz on December 15, 2015, 12:28:44 PM
I adore the fact that this is something I can talk about somewhere! I never got around to getting a menstrual cup before getting my Mirena IUD (and ending up with incredibly low-flow periods), but I got tired of having to deal with pantiliners and went with reusable cotton ones. I've been assuming that a cup would be uncomfortable or useless due to the low-flow thing, but this thread has me wondering if I was wrong. Anyone with experience in that department?

It would definitely be safer than tampons for low flow! People still get toxic shock syndrome.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: Anatidae V on December 16, 2015, 05:07:17 AM
I adore the fact that this is something I can talk about somewhere! I never got around to getting a menstrual cup before getting my Mirena IUD (and ending up with incredibly low-flow periods), but I got tired of having to deal with pantiliners and went with reusable cotton ones. I've been assuming that a cup would be uncomfortable or useless due to the low-flow thing, but this thread has me wondering if I was wrong. Anyone with experience in that department?

It would definitely be safer than tampons for low flow! People still get toxic shock syndrome.
Given Pompera_firpa said she was using pads, I don't think there was a chance of TSS from tampons :P
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: La Bibliotecaria Feroz on December 16, 2015, 08:55:39 PM
I adore the fact that this is something I can talk about somewhere! I never got around to getting a menstrual cup before getting my Mirena IUD (and ending up with incredibly low-flow periods), but I got tired of having to deal with pantiliners and went with reusable cotton ones. I've been assuming that a cup would be uncomfortable or useless due to the low-flow thing, but this thread has me wondering if I was wrong. Anyone with experience in that department?

It would definitely be safer than tampons for low flow! People still get toxic shock syndrome.
Given Pompera_firpa said she was using pads, I don't think there was a chance of TSS from tampons :P

Guess I figured everyone uses the occasional tampon for swimming or whatever.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: lbmustache on December 16, 2015, 11:01:39 PM
Not to hijack the thread but I have been considering "period panties" like THINX or Padkix... has anyone looked into these? I was thinking of buying a menstrual cup + 1-2 pairs of these underwear.

http://www.shethinx.com/products/thong-panties

http://www.shethinx.com/products/hiphugger-panties

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yI0ulQeUScA
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: Anatidae V on December 17, 2015, 04:55:26 AM
I adore the fact that this is something I can talk about somewhere! I never got around to getting a menstrual cup before getting my Mirena IUD (and ending up with incredibly low-flow periods), but I got tired of having to deal with pantiliners and went with reusable cotton ones. I've been assuming that a cup would be uncomfortable or useless due to the low-flow thing, but this thread has me wondering if I was wrong. Anyone with experience in that department?

It would definitely be safer than tampons for low flow! People still get toxic shock syndrome.
Given Pompera_firpa said she was using pads, I don't think there was a chance of TSS from tampons :P

Guess I figured everyone uses the occasional tampon for swimming or whatever.
Ah, fair call. I have never used a tampon, I just miss out on swimming. Couldn't get my head around the idea, how to get them in etc. But then, I turned out to have overactive pelvic muscles, so I couldn't have gotten them in anyway.

Not to hijack the thread but I have been considering "period panties" like THINX or Padkix... has anyone looked into these? I was thinking of buying a menstrual cup + 1-2 pairs of these underwear.

http://www.shethinx.com/products/thong-panties

http://www.shethinx.com/products/hiphugger-panties

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yI0ulQeUScA
They look like they might work as well as cloth pads?
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: lbmustache on December 17, 2015, 11:13:43 AM
Not to hijack the thread but I have been considering "period panties" like THINX or Padkix... has anyone looked into these? I was thinking of buying a menstrual cup + 1-2 pairs of these underwear.

http://www.shethinx.com/products/thong-panties

http://www.shethinx.com/products/hiphugger-panties

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yI0ulQeUScA
They look like they might work as well as cloth pads?

Yeah, that is what they are for. I would like to use them as backups for a menstrual cup (in case of leaks) or on days where I have bad cramps (like others have mentioned, tampons seem to make them worse sometimes). I can also use the light ones on days before I start my period or the last few days ... Just wondering if anyone has tried them? Padkix looks cuter, but Thinx is more established. Thinxs offers 10% off if you buy 3, so I'm hoping to get everything before I start my next period...
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: hudsoncat on December 17, 2015, 12:14:06 PM
Hmmm... finding this thread was interesting timing. I ordered my first cup (Lena Small) early this month and am using it for the first time today. I'm intrigued by the possibilities and convenience, but have to admit have been a little hesitant. So far so good (minimal leaking, not sure if that will be my normal or if it's part of the learning curve), so we'll see!
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: La Bibliotecaria Feroz on December 17, 2015, 02:24:25 PM
Not to hijack the thread but I have been considering "period panties" like THINX or Padkix... has anyone looked into these? I was thinking of buying a menstrual cup + 1-2 pairs of these underwear.

http://www.shethinx.com/products/thong-panties

http://www.shethinx.com/products/hiphugger-panties

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yI0ulQeUScA
They look like they might work as well as cloth pads?

Yeah, that is what they are for. I would like to use them as backups for a menstrual cup (in case of leaks) or on days where I have bad cramps (like others have mentioned, tampons seem to make them worse sometimes). I can also use the light ones on days before I start my period or the last few days ... Just wondering if anyone has tried them? Padkix looks cuter, but Thinx is more established. Thinxs offers 10% off if you buy 3, so I'm hoping to get everything before I start my next period...

The reason I haven't tried them is that they're like 5x as expensive as cloth pads! I'm sure they are more comfortable than cloth pads, though.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: lbmustache on December 17, 2015, 06:30:12 PM
Not to hijack the thread but I have been considering "period panties" like THINX or Padkix... has anyone looked into these? I was thinking of buying a menstrual cup + 1-2 pairs of these underwear.

http://www.shethinx.com/products/thong-panties

http://www.shethinx.com/products/hiphugger-panties

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yI0ulQeUScA
They look like they might work as well as cloth pads?

Yeah, that is what they are for. I would like to use them as backups for a menstrual cup (in case of leaks) or on days where I have bad cramps (like others have mentioned, tampons seem to make them worse sometimes). I can also use the light ones on days before I start my period or the last few days ... Just wondering if anyone has tried them? Padkix looks cuter, but Thinx is more established. Thinxs offers 10% off if you buy 3, so I'm hoping to get everything before I start my next period...

The reason I haven't tried them is that they're like 5x as expensive as cloth pads! I'm sure they are more comfortable than cloth pads, though.

Oh okay - I get what you are saying now! The original meaning went over my head the first time lol. Where do you get your cloth pads from? Do they move around (my biggest annoyance with regular pads tbh)?
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: rockstache on December 17, 2015, 07:37:28 PM
Slightly off topic/TMI: I introduced my 93 year old grandmother to the idea of the menstrual cup in conversation. She was absolutely appalled at the thought but then followed it up by saying that her mother had taught her that it was bad for your internal health to take a bath OR wash your hair during your period. I casually informed her that people even have sex during their periods now. She was horrified at that. I was horrified that she had gone days without bathing on her period. We both had a good laugh.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: Zaga on December 18, 2015, 06:44:23 AM
Okay, so question about the period panties.  How the heck do you change them in the middle of the day?  Sounds blasted inconvenient!  I would think they'd be fine for me, I've always had a light flow, but for women with a heavy flow like my mom who would go through 2 super tampons (inserted side by side), PLUS a large pad every hour the first day of her period, those panties sound like they wouldn't work very well at all!

Also, lol about your grandmother rockstache!
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: lbmustache on December 18, 2015, 09:38:40 AM

Okay, so question about the period panties.  How the heck do you change them in the middle of the day?  Sounds blasted inconvenient!  I would think they'd be fine for me, I've always had a light flow, but for women with a heavy flow like my mom who would go through 2 super tampons (inserted side by side), PLUS a large pad every hour the first day of her period, those panties sound like they wouldn't work very well at all!

Also, lol about your grandmother rockstache!

Yeah I'm gonna guess that these are not designed for women with very heavy flows... You would have to completely change your underwear. They do provide a bag to keep the soiled undies in.

The "heavy" underwear can hold two tampons of liquid, which would be about 8-10 hours (typical work day if I worked reg hours) for me on a heavy day. YMMV.

And two super tampons in one go sounds dangerous (TSS).
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: Zaga on December 18, 2015, 10:49:47 AM

Okay, so question about the period panties.  How the heck do you change them in the middle of the day?  Sounds blasted inconvenient!  I would think they'd be fine for me, I've always had a light flow, but for women with a heavy flow like my mom who would go through 2 super tampons (inserted side by side), PLUS a large pad every hour the first day of her period, those panties sound like they wouldn't work very well at all!

Also, lol about your grandmother rockstache!

Yeah I'm gonna guess that these are not designed for women with very heavy flows... You would have to completely change your underwear. They do provide a bag to keep the soiled undies in.

The "heavy" underwear can hold two tampons of liquid, which would be about 8-10 hours (typical work day if I worked reg hours) for me on a heavy day. YMMV.

And two super tampons in one go sounds dangerous (TSS).
Agreed, but it's not like she had any good options.  With that she was *just* able to make it through 1 class in high school between changes.  I'm honestly surprised her doctor didn't give her a hysterectomy at a young age, the blood loss she endured monthly was just crazy!  (Of course for obvious reasons I'm glad they didn't, or I wouldn't be here!)
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: With This Herring on December 18, 2015, 11:44:45 AM
Slightly off topic/TMI: I introduced my 93 year old grandmother to the idea of the menstrual cup in conversation. She was absolutely appalled at the thought but then followed it up by saying that her mother had taught her that it was bad for your internal health to take a bath OR wash your hair during your period. I casually informed her that people even have sex during their periods now. She was horrified at that. I was horrified that she had gone days without bathing on her period. We both had a good laugh.

You might mention to your grandmother that, per Wikipedia, menstrual cups are only a decade younger than she is (patented 1932).  :)



I love my menstrual cup!  I use a DivaCup, but I haven't tried others.  There is DEFINITELY a learning curve, but once I got through that I was home free.

For those who have not noticed an improvement in horrible cramping and excessive bleeding since switching to cups:

I had horrible, horrible cramps through age 20 or 21.  Bad enough to cause vomiting, bad enough that I was delirious once.  Just nasty stuff.  I had irregular, long periods (sometimes heavy bleeding for multiple weeks), and enough blood on my heaviest days that I was going through an overnight pad every hour or so.  (I tried using tampons three times, but everything about them was painful, so I used just pads for years.)

I was sick of the expense of these infinite pads, so I started looking online for anything cheaper.  That was how I found menstrual cups.  I only knew of the rubber Keeper and silicone DivaCup brands at the time, and I've seen what happens with old rubber bands, so I went with the silicone DivaCup.  I started being able to go an entire 1.5 hours between bathroom breaks on heavy days before a leak/overflow (using the cup with a pad as backup), which was something I could never do with pads.

Gradually, over the next year or so, my periods decreased significantly.  The pain was still really bad, but not to the degree that I was vomiting.  I could go four hours between emptying the cup on heavy days.  I was eventually able to make it halfway through the night without a leak, but I couldn't sleep in without consequences.

Once my flow had decreased to this degree, a year or two later I thought it would be safe to use a folded handkerchief as backup instead of a pad (thinking I could save money).  Success!  After cutting out commercial bleached pads and liners entirely, my period has decreased to the point where I can go an entire night without getting up AND sleep in with only a folded hanky as backup (though it rarely sees more than a few drops).  My cramps are down to the point where they are MUCH more easily controlled with lots of ibuprofen.  I no longer have to call out of work for cramps.

I really think something in the process to make the disposables leaves behind chemicals that leech into your body through the soft tissues and make your period worse.  My life is so much easier now.  I don't think it is simple aging that has cleared up my period issues, as my mother's only got worse over the years (culminating in a hysterectomy) and the same for my little sister.

So, for anyone who is suffering, try cutting out the bleached disposables for six months.  It made such a change in my life.  Switching to cups is only half the battle if you are still using disposable pads and liners as backup.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: OutlierinMA on December 21, 2015, 04:53:56 PM
This is actually my first post, which is kind-of funny, but I love my diva cup, and it is great for low-flow days.

On top of the money saved, the NO MORE STINKY TRASH (in fact the near elimination of "period" smell from your life), etc, one of my favorite things about the cup is that it does not dry you out! This was a revelation, how much more comfortable it was without a tampon sucking all the moisture out of you. So a light cycle day works just fine with a cup, where a tampon would be too much.

I have used the cup successfully on long camping trips where there was a bathroom with sink available at night; when I'm in a public bathroom I simply dump it in the toilet, wipe it down with TP, then bring to the sink relatively clean to wash with soap before reinserting.

I guess I would use pads again in a pinch for a backpacking trip, but only if I KNEW there would be no access to sufficient water to wash or boil my cup. Otherwise I can no longer do without it - I even bought a second one when I couldn't locate my first one temporarily, and now keep one in my purse at all times, the other at home, so I am never caught without it. Pads are so uncomfortable now, and I haven't even looked at a tampon since I started using a cup.

I have had it for around 5 years, after finding out about cups online and finding the Diva cup in Whole Foods. In general I wash with soap once in the morning and once before bed: dump contents in toilet then wash in sink with hot water and Dr. Bronner's soap. At the end of each cycle I boil for 20 minutes to sterilize - I don't mess around here, I don't trust that it is sterile otherwise, and there is no way I'm risking infection up there!

I remember my first month or two having some difficulty getting the cup in and out - I have found that the wash with hot water at the sink before inserting helps soften the silicon a bit, and not putting it in too far helps with the removal, as does bearing down if it seems a bit too high to comfortably remove. If I feel the stem I push it a bit higher. To prevent leaks I make sure it has expanded fully (from being folded), then I twist it around a few times to make sure it has a good seal.

I have had one or two cycles with clots, which fills up the cup in the middle of the day and requires emergency dumping - I talked to my sister about menstrual cups and apparently she has heavy periods with clots all the time - so she didn't think cups would work for her and she ended up getting a Mirena (which I have used before and loved - no periods!). Other than those few times I have been able to go all day and night with no problem.

I also can't believe I didn't hear about this earlier, and want to tell everyone, but have only brought it up with my sister. I wish I could bring it up with my friends but haven't figured out how to do so. Everyone should know about them! They have made my periods so much cleaner and more comfortable, cheaper and healthier!

Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: bye-bye Ms. FancyPants on December 23, 2015, 04:05:56 PM
Although they look big and scary, and I worried the first time I tried to get it out I would have to call the fire department, lol, I love and use the disposable soft cups all the time.  I have thought about washing and reusing, but then sorta freaked out and gave up on the thought. After reading this thread, I'm totally gonna have to try it. And yes, sex is doable (pun intended) and no one would even know unless you told them.

I have told a couple friends who now also use - mostly they were interested in the sex part ;)
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: nnls on December 23, 2015, 07:26:28 PM
For anyone in Australia they are currently on sale on ourdeal for $35

http://www.ourdeal.com.au/shopping/health-beauty/deal/female-cup-5  (http://www.ourdeal.com.au/shopping/health-beauty/deal/female-cup-5)
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: justajane on December 24, 2015, 08:09:20 PM
I also can't believe I didn't hear about this earlier, and want to tell everyone, but have only brought it up with my sister. I wish I could bring it up with my friends but haven't figured out how to do so. Everyone should know about them! They have made my periods so much cleaner and more comfortable, cheaper and healthier!

I agree. I brought it up to my sister today, and she had a strange reaction. She was grossed out by the idea of all the blood "hanging out" in a cup inside of her. But how is it any different from a tampon?  Plus tampons have always made me feel gross and are far more noticeable. Not to mention the fear of TSS and the cost. I can go for hours with a Diva Cup and even forget that I am having my period. That never happened when I wore tampons or (of course) pads.

I guess people are just resistant to change, especially when they are in their forties like my sister is.

This might have been mentioned in the thread -- it has been a while since I read it -- but anyone else have major difficulties using tampons post-childbirth? I just couldn't make them work after I gave birth vaginally. For that reason, the Diva Cup has especially been a godsend for me, as without it, I would likely have to use pads exclusively.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: karaishere on December 24, 2015, 08:39:25 PM
I have tried two cups. I bought the smaller Diva Cup in 2010 and I was able to insert correctly, but it was too long for me and would rub (ouch!), so I quit using it. More recently I tried again with a small Skoon cup and I can't seem to get it to stay in! I guess I have a really strong pelvic floor because I keep pushing it out. Sorry if that's TMI. I really want this to work because tampons really dry me out and are awful for the environment.

I've also been quite interested in trying the period underwear. I think they'd be great for at night, so I don't have to worry about TSS, or as leak backup. I have some cloth pad liners from Lunapads that are very soft feeling, but they still feel a little bulky to wear. I wonder if the underwear would be more comfortable because they're all one unit.

I definitely need to read through this whole thread for tips.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: With This Herring on December 24, 2015, 10:10:15 PM
I have tried two cups. I bought the smaller Diva Cup in 2010 and I was able to insert correctly, but it was too long for me and would rub (ouch!), so I quit using it. *snip*

Have you trimmed the stem off your Diva Cup yet?  Almost everyone does and prefers it with no stem.  If it is rubbing, it might not be in quite far enough.  Also, a good number of women find that wearing it inside-out helps with some issues.

I've never tried other cups, so I have no advice on the Skoon (though I enjoy that the name sounds like another eating utensil).
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: karaishere on December 25, 2015, 07:47:58 PM
I have tried two cups. I bought the smaller Diva Cup in 2010 and I was able to insert correctly, but it was too long for me and would rub (ouch!), so I quit using it. *snip*

Have you trimmed the stem off your Diva Cup yet?  Almost everyone does and prefers it with no stem.  If it is rubbing, it might not be in quite far enough.  Also, a good number of women find that wearing it inside-out helps with some issues.

I've never tried other cups, so I have no advice on the Skoon (though I enjoy that the name sounds like another eating utensil).

I've trimmed the stem all the way off and turned it inside out. Neither helped, which is why I tried a different, shorter brand (I suspect my normally high cervix moves lower during my cycle). It was definitely in all the way too because it was suctioned to my cervix. My new cup, I can't seem to get to suctioned on.

If you ever decide to try, you may find these charts helpful for a quick overview, but also read individual cup reviews as well.
 
http://menstrualcupinfo.wordpress.com/cup-stiffness-comparison-chart/
http://menstrualcups.wordpress.com/2010/08/19/cup-size-comparison-charts/

Thanks for posting these links. I might be having a sizing issue with my current two tries.
[/quote]
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: La Bibliotecaria Feroz on December 28, 2015, 05:41:08 PM
WHERE HAS THIS BEEN ALL MY LIFE???

In fairness, I never gave tampons a real chance. I used about 7 (two boxes of 4, and I gave one away) in a thirteen-year span.

I really wish I had tried this before investing in a whole bunch of cloth pads. They are fine, but I was really finding that they would feel gross on heavy flow days, and then everything that they absorbed, I had to rinse and soak out.

I have a small Luna. I need to empty it more often since it's the "small," but I can't imagine I would want to take a LARGER item and shove it up there...
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: Connie on January 02, 2016, 08:03:35 PM
I tried the Diva cup but it leaked horribly. I ensured that there was a seal all the way around but it still leaked for some reason. I went back to tampons. I'e tried to hack my birth control (NuvaRing) so that I can skip periods by keeping it in 4 weeks at a time and then immediately switching to a new one, but I still have light periods.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: cavewoman on January 02, 2016, 10:14:18 PM
I heard about these cups a while ago, but never pulled the trigger. I guess I was nervous about getting the wrong shape or size. My boyfriend keeps asking when I'm going to buy those cup thingies. I'm going to read some of the links provided and decide today!

I currently use ob because they at least cut down on some of the waste, but it's still just ridiculous.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: The Drawing Bird on January 16, 2016, 06:12:30 PM
I will say, the IUD (ParaGard or whatever it is - non-hormonal) has made my period way heavier.  It might be because I'm still breastfeeding, but ever since I got it implanted I've had periods heavy enough that it requires me to empty the cup about every 4 hours during the day for a couple of days.  On the other hand, I've had very little cramping and if heavy bleeding is the worst that can be said for the IUD (as opposed to all of the AWFUL symptoms I had while on the pill) bring it on.


+1!

Yes, ParaGard gave me ridiculously heavy periods too.  That was actually why I started with a menstrual cup: because nothing else was able to do its job through the entire night.  I'd highly recommend menstrual cups to women with heavy flows.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: VAR on January 16, 2016, 09:01:10 PM
I've used the DC for years off and on. I have a crazy heavy flow so even though it always leaked it did help stem the tide!
I made my own cloth pads and love them. Always feel like I'm sitting on a cloud. Which is awesome.
And there's the constant joy of sticking it to the plastic crinkly pastel wrapper people.

This thread has reminded me though that I've always wanted to try a different cup. The Diva was always uncomfortable, pressure, poking me etc. It was worth it to me most of the time for a long time. It actually made my cramps worse.

I'm jealous of you ladies who don't have leaks and less cramps!
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: CupcakeGuru on January 17, 2016, 03:44:18 AM

This thread has reminded me though that I've always wanted to try a different cup. The Diva was always uncomfortable, pressure, poking me etc. It was worth it to me most of the time for a long time. It actually made my cramps worse.



I'm jealous of you ladies who don't have leaks and less cramps!

I was hesitant to try a cup because I am only 5 feet tall and heard stories on how uncomfortable they are for short women. I found one called Me Luna that comes in short sizes. I have been using it for several months and so happy that I found it. I didn't even cut off the stem since it doesn't bother me in the slightest.

http://meluna-usa.com

Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: Squirrel away on January 17, 2016, 04:44:31 AM
I am now on my second Mooncup and I cut the stem off to make it more comfortable. I actually used tampons this month as I sometimes find them easier. The problem I have with the Mooncup is that I usually get my period first thing in the morning and I am sometimes so tired and bleary eyed that I find it difficult to insert.

If you are at home for the day I find it very easy to use and it is obviously environmentally better than the throw away tampons or pads.

I tried to change my Mooncup when I was in a tiny, very narrow bathroom of a Chinese restaurant once and would not like to repeat that experience! I was standing up and had one leg folded up against the wall trying to get the right angle so I could insert it in correctly. Lol.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: With This Herring on January 17, 2016, 08:46:01 AM
I am now on my second Mooncup and I cut the stem off to make it more comfortable. I actually used tampons this month as I sometimes find them easier. The problem I have with the Mooncup is that I usually get my period first thing in the morning and I am sometimes so tired and bleary eyed that I find it difficult to insert.

If you are at home for the day I find it very easy to use and it is obviously environmentally better than the throw away tampons or pads.

I tried to change my Mooncup when I was in a tiny, very narrow bathroom of a Chinese restaurant once and would not like to repeat that experience! I was standing up and had one leg folded up against the wall trying to get the right angle so I could insert it in correctly. Lol.

If you are very regular and know what morning you will get your period (lucky duck), you can insert the cup the night before.  That is one of the great things about cups; they are non-absorbent, so they are fine hanging out before your period and when it is ending in a trickle.  (Just keep emptying and washing it regularly, even though it isn't filling up.)
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: cavewoman on January 17, 2016, 10:26:27 AM
I bought one!!!!  It came in the mail.... on the day after my last period day.  First time I was ever sad it was over because I was excited to try it ;)

Next month!
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: SisterX on January 17, 2016, 02:51:40 PM
I will say, the IUD (ParaGard or whatever it is - non-hormonal) has made my period way heavier.  It might be because I'm still breastfeeding, but ever since I got it implanted I've had periods heavy enough that it requires me to empty the cup about every 4 hours during the day for a couple of days.  On the other hand, I've had very little cramping and if heavy bleeding is the worst that can be said for the IUD (as opposed to all of the AWFUL symptoms I had while on the pill) bring it on.


+1!

Yes, ParaGard gave me ridiculously heavy periods too.  That was actually why I started with a menstrual cup: because nothing else was able to do its job through the entire night.  I'd highly recommend menstrual cups to women with heavy flows.

My period has gotten lighter over the two years since I got it inserted.  I didn't notice a significant decrease when I ceased breastfeeding, but it has gone down.  Now my heavy days I can go about 6-8 hours without washing it out, most of the time, and I'm down to only 1-2 seriously heavy days rather than 3-4.

I bought one!!!!  It came in the mail.... on the day after my last period day.  First time I was ever sad it was over because I was excited to try it ;)

Next month!

Lol!
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: Squirrel away on January 18, 2016, 02:58:27 AM
If you are very regular and know what morning you will get your period (lucky duck), you can insert the cup the night before. 

Oh yes, of course. I don't know why I didn't think to do that before.:)

Another positive thing is that I think the cup makes your period seem shorter as well as it lasts about 3 days when I use it compared to 4 days when I use tampons.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: karaishere on January 18, 2016, 08:20:48 AM
I was hesitant to try a cup because I am only 5 feet tall and heard stories on how uncomfortable they are for short women. I found one called Me Luna that comes in short sizes. I have been using it for several months and so happy that I found it. I didn't even cut off the stem since it doesn't bother me in the slightest.

http://meluna-usa.com

I had not heard this, but I find it interesting since I'm also petite at 5'1".
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: CupcakeGuru on January 18, 2016, 12:49:09 PM
I was hesitant to try a cup because I am only 5 feet tall and heard stories on how uncomfortable they are for short women. I found one called Me Luna that comes in short sizes. I have been using it for several months and so happy that I found it. I didn't even cut off the stem since it doesn't bother me in the slightest.

http://meluna-usa.com

I had not heard this, but I find it interesting since I'm also petite at 5'1".
I found this chart with the lengths and sizes of cups.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: MLKnits on January 18, 2016, 01:21:38 PM
... the NO MORE STINKY TRASH (in fact the near elimination of "period" smell from your life)...

One absolutely fantastic side-effect that I only realized the other day, after years of using a menstrual cup--there's nothing for pets to dig out of the trash! I had completely forgotten about all my teenage horror stories about our then-dog tearing used tampons and pads to bits all over the house; I've had my current dog for years and never once had a problem because there's nothing in the trash to steal and destroy. Not even having to worry about it is glorious!
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: francophile on January 18, 2016, 01:34:35 PM
I bought one!!!!  It came in the mail.... on the day after my last period day.  First time I was ever sad it was over because I was excited to try it ;)

Next month!

Hah, I felt the same way when I first got mine. Was actually excited for my period to start! I did find it helpful to practice folds & insertion a day or two before I was expecting my period though.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: Bracken_Joy on January 18, 2016, 02:11:50 PM
... the NO MORE STINKY TRASH (in fact the near elimination of "period" smell from your life)...

One absolutely fantastic side-effect that I only realized the other day, after years of using a menstrual cup--there's nothing for pets to dig out of the trash! I had completely forgotten about all my teenage horror stories about our then-dog tearing used tampons and pads to bits all over the house; I've had my current dog for years and never once had a problem because there's nothing in the trash to steal and destroy. Not even having to worry about it is glorious!

Oh my god flashbacks.

Brother brought a friend over who I had a huge crush on... and they went upstairs... and my dog had gotten into the trash... and also hauled my underwear out of the laundry....

Pretty sure I was repressing those memories. To the credit of Crush, he never told anyone at school. Or mentioned it again. Thank god.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: justajane on January 19, 2016, 11:01:07 AM
I just read an article in the paper about a teenage girl in Michigan who is suffering from severe organ failure from TSS from a tampon. Poor girl! That could have certainly been me at that age. I would buy the larger sized tampons because I thought it was more frugal and probably left them in longer than I should have.

Like others on here, getting a Diva Cup was such a turning point.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: La Bibliotecaria Feroz on January 19, 2016, 02:55:26 PM
I was hesitant to try a cup because I am only 5 feet tall and heard stories on how uncomfortable they are for short women. I found one called Me Luna that comes in short sizes. I have been using it for several months and so happy that I found it. I didn't even cut off the stem since it doesn't bother me in the slightest.

http://meluna-usa.com

I had not heard this, but I find it interesting since I'm also petite at 5'1".

I am 4'11" and have had no trouble with my Luna Cup Small.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: Orvell on January 19, 2016, 02:58:11 PM
I was hesitant to try a cup because I am only 5 feet tall and heard stories on how uncomfortable they are for short women. I found one called Me Luna that comes in short sizes. I have been using it for several months and so happy that I found it. I didn't even cut off the stem since it doesn't bother me in the slightest.

http://meluna-usa.com

I had not heard this, but I find it interesting since I'm also petite at 5'1".

I am 4'11" and have had no trouble with my Luna Cup Small.
I'm wondering if the shortness in question has to do with internal and not external measurements. Good luck! I'm not super short (5'4") but haven't had any trouble myself regardless.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: karaishere on January 19, 2016, 05:24:57 PM
I was hesitant to try a cup because I am only 5 feet tall and heard stories on how uncomfortable they are for short women. I found one called Me Luna that comes in short sizes. I have been using it for several months and so happy that I found it. I didn't even cut off the stem since it doesn't bother me in the slightest.

http://meluna-usa.com

I had not heard this, but I find it interesting since I'm also petite at 5'1".

I am 4'11" and have had no trouble with my Luna Cup Small.
I'm wondering if the shortness in question has to do with internal and not external measurements. Good luck! I'm not super short (5'4") but haven't had any trouble myself regardless.
I think it actually might be both for me because the Diva Cup was definitely too long no matter how high I tried to place it, stem removal, turning it inside out... I'm trying to gain whatever knowledge I can from other people who've used cups smaller than the Diva. :)
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: Zaga on January 19, 2016, 06:56:08 PM
I am small (inside and out) and have a very low cervix and the Lunette small is perfect for me.  Though it's likely at this point that I'll never use it again, having a hysterectomy in March.  I also have a Lady Cup small in green which is okay, but I didn't like nearly as much and just used as a backup.

So though this is weird, after my surgery I'd be more than happy to sterilize and send my cups off to a new home.  Both have the stems cut off, and the Lady Cup hasn't been used often.  The Lunette I bought 8 or 9 years ago so it might not have much life yet, but it could be useful for someone to check for size before buying their own.

Yeah, that is weird, but I'll do it lol!
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: With This Herring on January 19, 2016, 07:46:00 PM
I am small (inside and out) and have a very low cervix and the Lunette small is perfect for me.  Though it's likely at this point that I'll never use it again, having a hysterectomy in March.  I also have a Lady Cup small in green which is okay, but I didn't like nearly as much and just used as a backup.

So though this is weird, after my surgery I'd be more than happy to sterilize and send my cups off to a new home.  Both have the stems cut off, and the Lady Cup hasn't been used often.  The Lunette I bought 8 or 9 years ago so it might not have much life yet, but it could be useful for someone to check for size before buying their own.

Yeah, that is weird, but I'll do it lol!

If I needed one, I'd be jumping at the chance, but my DivaCup fits me fine.  I have to think that we ladies of the cups would probably be less squicked out by the idea than those who have never come across cups before.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: Orvell on January 19, 2016, 07:50:01 PM
I am small (inside and out) and have a very low cervix and the Lunette small is perfect for me.  Though it's likely at this point that I'll never use it again, having a hysterectomy in March.  I also have a Lady Cup small in green which is okay, but I didn't like nearly as much and just used as a backup.

So though this is weird, after my surgery I'd be more than happy to sterilize and send my cups off to a new home.  Both have the stems cut off, and the Lady Cup hasn't been used often.  The Lunette I bought 8 or 9 years ago so it might not have much life yet, but it could be useful for someone to check for size before buying their own.

Yeah, that is weird, but I'll do it lol!

If I needed one, I'd be jumping at the chance, but my DivaCup fits me fine.  I have to think that we ladies of the cups would probably be less squicked out by the idea than those who have never come across cups before.
I think it's an awesome idea! (ALSO LADIES OF THE CUP THAT IS THE BEST DESCRIPTOR EVER.)
I have a MoonCup(UK) that fits me perfect but I hope someone will take the opportunity. :)
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: karaishere on January 20, 2016, 12:10:44 PM
So I ran across this table (https://docs.zoho.com/sheet/published.do?rid=cz73jf33518c07b1c4e6aae695729d3f90f93&mode=html) with cups sorted by length and can see that my small Sckoon cup is one of the shortest on the market, so I'm going to give it another go! I probably just need to practice getting it to pop open, which won't necessarily be solved by buying a different small cup.

Anyway, I thought some other ladies might find this helpful for those more challenging cervix locations. :)
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: With This Herring on January 20, 2016, 03:54:14 PM
So I ran across this table (https://docs.zoho.com/sheet/published.do?rid=cz73jf33518c07b1c4e6aae695729d3f90f93&mode=html) with cups sorted by length and can see that my small Sckoon cup is one of the shortest on the market, so I'm going to give it another go! I probably just need to practice getting it to pop open, which won't necessarily be solved by buying a different small cup.

Anyway, I thought some other ladies might find this helpful for those more challenging cervix locations. :)

I've heard that a cup not popping can be remedied by trying different folds.  I've just used the standard U.  Try punch-down?

*snip*

If I needed one, I'd be jumping at the chance, but my DivaCup fits me fine.  I have to think that we ladies of the cups would probably be less squicked out by the idea than those who have never come across cups before.
I think it's an awesome idea! (ALSO LADIES OF THE CUP THAT IS THE BEST DESCRIPTOR EVER.)
I have a MoonCup(UK) that fits me perfect but I hope someone will take the opportunity. :)
Thank you!  Now I'm thinking that, if one finds the right cup, it is her Holy Grail.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: karaishere on January 20, 2016, 06:28:06 PM
So I ran across this table (https://docs.zoho.com/sheet/published.do?rid=cz73jf33518c07b1c4e6aae695729d3f90f93&mode=html) with cups sorted by length and can see that my small Sckoon cup is one of the shortest on the market, so I'm going to give it another go! I probably just need to practice getting it to pop open, which won't necessarily be solved by buying a different small cup.

Anyway, I thought some other ladies might find this helpful for those more challenging cervix locations. :)

I've heard that a cup not popping can be remedied by trying different folds.  I've just used the standard U.  Try punch-down?

I actually prefer the punch-down fold because it makes a narrower end, unlike the C fold (or U as you called it). It always popped open on my diva, but it seems my sckoon is a little softer. Like I said, need to practice! :)
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: VAR on January 23, 2016, 05:40:41 AM
Good grief there's so many more options now than the last time I checked a few years ago. That's cool....but overwhelming!
I think my issue is an internal configuration problem. I'm not short.

Chinese food place stall....oh dear I can imagine!
I once had a workplace overflow crazy clotting situation. The bathroom looked like a murder scene, but fortunately it was a handicap sized separate room. My supervisor gave me the strangest look when I calmly returned to help her - 30 minutes later. "Are you alright?"

I'm going to spend all day thinking of LADIES OF THE CUP!!!! (horn fanfare!)
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: cavewoman on January 24, 2016, 12:42:18 PM
can we get a thread title change?  I love LADIES OF THE CUP!
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: With This Herring on January 25, 2016, 06:31:03 PM
:D
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: Urchina on February 07, 2016, 11:16:06 PM
Ladies, thank you. I've used a DC for years with cloth pantiliners as backup (love my GladRags!) but the DC has leaked a little all the years I've used it -- I just put up with it as it wasn't horrible.

Realized after scanning this thread that there are a LOT of new options on the market, and buzzed over to Amazon to see what I could try.

Got a Lena coming in two days, and will see how it goes.

Never going back to tampons or disposable pads, I can tell you that!
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: lbmustache on February 11, 2016, 08:17:04 PM
Finally got to use mine!!! (I have a Lena cup)

I definitely prefer the punch down fold to the c/u fold. There is a learning curve with inserting it. Also had a slight moment of panic when I couldn't quite grasp the stem (trimmed) to pull it out. Had visions of going to the emergency room to have someone dig this out of me, ha!

I really like it so far, it just requires a bit more contorting (and thus, space) to use it than I thought.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: Bracken_Joy on February 13, 2016, 09:35:51 AM
Finally got to use mine!!! (I have a Lena cup)

I definitely prefer the punch down fold to the c/u fold. There is a learning curve with inserting it. Also had a slight moment of panic when I couldn't quite grasp the stem (trimmed) to pull it out. Had visions of going to the emergency room to have someone dig this out of me, ha!

I really like it so far, it just requires a bit more contorting (and thus, space) to use it than I thought.

Ha! I've had that happen. You have a moment of like, "oh my god please no". Little panic adds spice to your life, right?!
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: kiwigirls on February 14, 2016, 02:01:53 PM
Hi Ladies of the Cup - what a great thread.  I had never heard of menstrual cups before but when I read this thread I went and bought one from our local healthfood shop.  I too am now waiting for my next period to give it a try and am looking forward to no more sleepless nights and three hourly tampon changing when my period begins.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: With This Herring on February 14, 2016, 10:12:36 PM
Hi Ladies of the Cup - what a great thread.  I had never heard of menstrual cups before but when I read this thread I went and bought one from our local healthfood shop.  I too am now waiting for my next period to give it a try and am looking forward to sleepless nights and three hourly tampon changing when my period begins.

You can try it out now, preferably in the shower to give it a little slip.  If you can get a good idea of how to seat it now, it will be easier when your period comes.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: lafemmex on February 15, 2016, 02:44:43 AM
Who knew a night of insomnia would lead to saving more of my 'stache and the planet to boot!  After reading this thread, I went on Amazon and bought a Lena - Small.  Normally $49.99 but for some reason, on sale for $24.99.  Yippee!  Thank you "Ladies of the Cup!"
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: LadyStache in Baja on February 15, 2016, 09:23:47 AM
This thread is so awesome.  Yay ladies!  I'm going to get one, I had used the Keeper, but lost it years ago, and then I did cloth pads.....wait for it, I use the cloth diaper inserts from my kids' old cloth diapers.  They are huge and absorbent and awesome.  Way comfier than plastic pads.

Lately I've been using tampons again, with my cloth pad backup.  My Day 1 and 2 are soo heavy.  I have to change a super plus every hour!  Heavy flow ladies, how often do you change your cup on day 1 and 2?

Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: Bracken_Joy on February 15, 2016, 10:26:11 AM
This thread is so awesome.  Yay ladies!  I'm going to get one, I had used the Keeper, but lost it years ago, and then I did cloth pads.....wait for it, I use the cloth diaper inserts from my kids' old cloth diapers.  They are huge and absorbent and awesome.  Way comfier than plastic pads.

Lately I've been using tampons again, with my cloth pad backup.  My Day 1 and 2 are soo heavy.  I have to change a super plus every hour!  Heavy flow ladies, how often do you change your cup on day 1 and 2?

Days 1 and 2, I'd say super plus change every 2-3 hours. So I'd say moderately heavy. Cup I do about every 6 hours- seriously, I really only need to do one extra empty per day. Although I have the diva, which I think is higher capacity than some other cups.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: cavewoman on February 15, 2016, 01:14:04 PM
Yeah, I went into it the first period thinking "yay, I can stick this in and not worry about changing it in the stall at work" because it can last 12 hours...
Forgetting that my first day is very heavy.  I filled one up in about 4 hours (fleurcup).  Then checked it again because I was just getting nervous.  All in all though, it wasn't so bad to do in the public bathroom.  And, I got the "oh shit, I dropped it in the toilet" part out of the way really quickly.

I checked with my Mr and he said that he's fine with me boiling it in a regular pot.  He actually stopped me 1/2 way through my question ("so you see babe, these things need to be sanitized between each cycle, which means boiling...).  I think I was more skeeved out than him, to be honest. 
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: With This Herring on February 15, 2016, 05:18:36 PM
This thread is so awesome.  Yay ladies!  I'm going to get one, I had used the Keeper, but lost it years ago, and then I did cloth pads.....wait for it, I use the cloth diaper inserts from my kids' old cloth diapers.  They are huge and absorbent and awesome.  Way comfier than plastic pads.

Lately I've been using tampons again, with my cloth pad backup.  My Day 1 and 2 are soo heavy.  I have to change a super plus every hour!  Heavy flow ladies, how often do you change your cup on day 1 and 2?

I never used tampons (too painful), but I used to fill up an overnight pad in an hour.  When my period was still that heavy (giving up disposables had made it lighter!), I would fill up the cup every 4 hours normally, but in one to two hours if I had a sudden blood waterfall/clot geyser.  You know those?  My DivaCup holds an ounce, and a clump can be close to that on its own.  Until you figure out timing for your cup emptyings, I would suggest having your pad backup at least at night and sometimes during the day.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: Bracken_Joy on February 15, 2016, 05:24:10 PM
This thread is so awesome.  Yay ladies!  I'm going to get one, I had used the Keeper, but lost it years ago, and then I did cloth pads.....wait for it, I use the cloth diaper inserts from my kids' old cloth diapers.  They are huge and absorbent and awesome.  Way comfier than plastic pads.

Lately I've been using tampons again, with my cloth pad backup.  My Day 1 and 2 are soo heavy.  I have to change a super plus every hour!  Heavy flow ladies, how often do you change your cup on day 1 and 2?

I never used tampons (too painful), but I used to fill up an overnight pad in an hour.  When my period was still that heavy (giving up disposables had made it lighter!), I would fill up the cup every 4 hours normally, but in one to two hours if I had a sudden blood waterfall/clot geyser.  You know those? My DivaCup holds an ounce, and a clump can be close to that on its own.  Until you figure out timing for your cup emptyings, I would suggest having your pad backup at least at night and sometimes during the day.

Hilarious, relevant, yet gross meme, as a link instead of inbedded in case people don't want to see it:
https://s-media-cache-ak0.pinimg.com/564x/41/14/e4/4114e4d756404e9ec2e3d8bfe7cb9d0d.jpg (https://s-media-cache-ak0.pinimg.com/564x/41/14/e4/4114e4d756404e9ec2e3d8bfe7cb9d0d.jpg)
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: kiwigirls on February 16, 2016, 01:51:32 AM
Hi Ladies of the Cup - what a great thread.  I had never heard of menstrual cups before but when I read this thread I went and bought one from our local healthfood shop.  I too am now waiting for my next period to give it a try and am looking forward to sleepless nights and three hourly tampon changing when my period begins.

You can try it out now, preferably in the shower to give it a little slip.  If you can get a good idea of how to seat it now, it will be easier when your period comes.

Thanks for the tip.  I will try it out before hand.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: Bracken_Joy on February 16, 2016, 08:15:39 AM
Hi Ladies of the Cup - what a great thread.  I had never heard of menstrual cups before but when I read this thread I went and bought one from our local healthfood shop.  I too am now waiting for my next period to give it a try and am looking forward to sleepless nights and three hourly tampon changing when my period begins.

You can try it out now, preferably in the shower to give it a little slip.  If you can get a good idea of how to seat it now, it will be easier when your period comes.

Thanks for the tip.  I will try it out before hand.

One of the best parts about the cup. Because it doesn't disrupt the epithelial lining when you take it out, you don't have to be on your period to use it. You can put it in early if you think you may start, and I even have a friend who uses it at other times in her cycle because she has so much cervical fluid that it's problematic. Anyway, that flexibility with timing is one of the biggest benefits in my opinion!
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: La Bibliotecaria Feroz on February 16, 2016, 09:00:30 AM
I have a question...will I still be able to use a menstrual cup after giving birth, and if so, approximately how long will I need to wait? I use the Diva, the larger size, and I LOVE it and I think it will suck having to go back to pads/tampons, although I realize with the heavy post-birth bleeding I'll need maternity pads for the first little while...

The rule is don't shove anything up there for the full first 6 weeks--bleeding should have stopped by then. No tampons, no cups, gotta use pads. I was able to use regular Always after the first week or so, which was spent with those giant hospital thingies that you wear with the mesh undies. Good times.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: With This Herring on February 16, 2016, 09:17:02 AM
This thread is so awesome.  Yay ladies!  I'm going to get one, I had used the Keeper, but lost it years ago, and then I did cloth pads.....wait for it, I use the cloth diaper inserts from my kids' old cloth diapers.  They are huge and absorbent and awesome.  Way comfier than plastic pads.

Lately I've been using tampons again, with my cloth pad backup.  My Day 1 and 2 are soo heavy.  I have to change a super plus every hour!  Heavy flow ladies, how often do you change your cup on day 1 and 2?

I never used tampons (too painful), but I used to fill up an overnight pad in an hour.  When my period was still that heavy (giving up disposables had made it lighter!), I would fill up the cup every 4 hours normally, but in one to two hours if I had a sudden blood waterfall/clot geyser.  You know those? My DivaCup holds an ounce, and a clump can be close to that on its own.  Until you figure out timing for your cup emptyings, I would suggest having your pad backup at least at night and sometimes during the day.

Hilarious, relevant, yet gross meme, as a link instead of inbedded in case people don't want to see it:
https://s-media-cache-ak0.pinimg.com/564x/41/14/e4/4114e4d756404e9ec2e3d8bfe7cb9d0d.jpg (https://s-media-cache-ak0.pinimg.com/564x/41/14/e4/4114e4d756404e9ec2e3d8bfe7cb9d0d.jpg)

Oh, that is perfect(ly horrible)!
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: sailingTowardsFI on February 19, 2016, 04:50:31 PM
So... I bought a DivaCup and am trying it for the first time!  This is something I never ever thought I'd try; I remember first seeing them referenced in college with a mention of "scary spillage" which turned me off forever - my roommates and I would even joke about scary spillage and how WE'D never try a cup.  But.. I like to sail, and you just can't flush tampons in a marine head.  Plus I like the idea of not spending money on disposable feminine products, so I took the plunge.  I will say, it looked enormous when I pulled it out of the package, but it seems to work pretty well.  Thanks to all for this thread, it definitely changed my mind on this product!  Ladies of the Cup unite!!
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: ariapluscat on April 13, 2016, 01:55:24 PM
Does anyone use re-usable fabric pads?

I haven't tried menstrual cups bc pads are super uncomfortable for me. But I love fabric pads - cheaper long term and super comfortable.

I also like the advice about cleaning the cups.
How do women deal with changing cups at work?
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: Orvell on April 13, 2016, 05:01:52 PM
Does anyone use re-usable fabric pads?

I haven't tried menstrual cups bc pads are super uncomfortable for me. But I love fabric pads - cheaper long term and super comfortable.

I also like the advice about cleaning the cups.
How do women deal with changing cups at work?
I'm not sure your correlation between pads being uncomfortable for you and cups is solid. Might be worth trying a cup to see? :)
As for work, I just take it out with a clean hand, dump it in the toilet, and pop that sucker right back in. Don't let it touch anything or do it with a dirty hand, and you sometimes have to use a little more toilet paper than usual to keep yourself from looking like a serial murderer, but it's do-able. :) I prefer being able to rinse it off in a sink, but the dump and re-insert method works for the times when that's not an option.
\o/ Ta da!
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: HappierAtHome on April 13, 2016, 05:33:20 PM
I use cloth pads and love them.

As for changing the cup at work, I don't. I'm good for 12 hours with the cup. That's one of the benefits of the cup over cloth pads for me on heavy days :-)
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: Zaga on April 13, 2016, 05:36:34 PM
Well I'm all healed up from having my uterus removed, and I have one very rarely used green Lady Cup size small that I'm happy to send to anyone who asks over PM.  (I also have a very well used small Lunette, same deal but not much life left in it.)  Oh, and homemade 3 layer flannel pantiliners.

All of which I will sterilize by boiling and wash several times before sending.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: La Bibliotecaria Feroz on April 13, 2016, 08:17:55 PM
Does anyone use re-usable fabric pads?

I haven't tried menstrual cups bc pads are super uncomfortable for me. But I love fabric pads - cheaper long term and super comfortable.

I also like the advice about cleaning the cups.
How do women deal with changing cups at work?

Did you mean tampons are uncomfortable? I never got used to tampons, either, but I like my menstrual cup. (There's a learning curve, but I'm pushing through.)

I liked fabric pads at first, but I think I might have been on the pill when I started using them. I have heavier periods now and getting the blood out of the damn things enough to put them in the washing machine was gross. And they felt gross on heavy days and were impractical and uncomfortable for bike riding.

Another nice feature of the cup is that I can take a BATH when I feel menstrually gross! I know, tampon users have always had this option, but it's a whole new world for me.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: sonjak on April 13, 2016, 08:40:32 PM
Does anyone use re-usable fabric pads?

I haven't tried menstrual cups bc pads are super uncomfortable for me. But I love fabric pads - cheaper long term and super comfortable.

I also like the advice about cleaning the cups.
How do women deal with changing cups at work?
I have a cup but haven't needed to use it when on the pill.  When I did use a cup regularly, I would take a couple wet paper towels into the stall with me, empty the cup and then wipe the outside with the wet paper towel and reinsert.  Use the other one to wipe my fingers after.  Toss those in the same place I used to dispose of used pads.  It's actually a lot easier than the hassle of replacing a pad (and more subtle) because you already have it with you.

I still need pads, especially the liners, during my period.  After developing reactions to the disposable pads (years ago), I tried several cloth kinds and these are my favorite.  http://www.newmoonpads.com/home.html

I have had the same ones for years, have washed them many times and they still are holding up great.  (I think about buying new ones sometimes to have something different/fun but the mustachian part of me realizes how ridiculous that is so I haven't.)  I got my sister a big stash for a gift one year (she uses them as her sole protection - except when she's traveling when she buys disposable) and she loves them too.

I really appreciate that the only time I walk down the "feminine products" aisle is when I"m headed through to somewhere else.  I used to spend a ton on tampons and pads.  Now it's not even a part of my life.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: Orvell on April 14, 2016, 06:01:29 AM
Well I'm all healed up from having my uterus removed, and I have one very rarely used green Lady Cup size small that I'm happy to send to anyone who asks over PM.  (I also have a very well used small Lunette, same deal but not much life left in it.)  Oh, and homemade 3 layer flannel pantiliners.

All of which I will sterilize by boiling and wash several times before sending.
I wish I didn't have a cup that worked for me (that's lie. I'm glad I have a cup that works for me).
But I hope someone takes you up on this. :) It's very generous of you!
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: Anatidae V on April 14, 2016, 07:15:39 AM
Does anyone use re-usable fabric pads?

I haven't tried menstrual cups bc pads are super uncomfortable for me. But I love fabric pads - cheaper long term and super comfortable.

I also like the advice about cleaning the cups.
How do women deal with changing cups at work?

Did you mean tampons are uncomfortable? I never got used to tampons, either, but I like my menstrual cup. (There's a learning curve, but I'm pushing through.)

I liked fabric pads at first, but I think I might have been on the pill when I started using them. I have heavier periods now and getting the blood out of the damn things enough to put them in the washing machine was gross. And they felt gross on heavy days and were impractical and uncomfortable for bike riding.

Another nice feature of the cup is that I can take a BATH when I feel menstrually gross! I know, tampon users have always had this option, but it's a whole new world for me.
Oh myyyy. I had never considered that, because I've never used a tampon. Oh. I might get around to buying a cup after all. I am currently building my fabric pad stash. I have heavier flows, but find the cloth pads fine; I just have a bag for carrying the folded up dirty ones and don't stress about soaking it too long before washing. They've cleaned up fine so far. I've got Party In My Pants, but don't like their shape for overnights (equally long at the front and back, and still not long enough to catch flow that tends to drip down the back). Their medium/large and liners are a dream, though
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: aetherie on April 14, 2016, 07:54:39 AM
Well I'm all healed up from having my uterus removed, and I have one very rarely used green Lady Cup size small that I'm happy to send to anyone who asks over PM.  (I also have a very well used small Lunette, same deal but not much life left in it.)  Oh, and homemade 3 layer flannel pantiliners.

All of which I will sterilize by boiling and wash several times before sending.

Glad to hear your surgery and recovery went well!

If you get a request from someone who doesn't have a cup yet, please send it to them. But if after a little while nobody else is interested, I'll happily take all of it!

I have a DivaCup that works reasonably well for me, but I can't use it at night because it always leaks. Always. Only at night. So I would love the chance to try another brand or two to see if the problem is with the DivaCup or with me (am I doing intense kegel-type gymnastics in my sleep or what? It's fine during the day!).
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: Miss Piggy on April 14, 2016, 08:08:59 AM
I think I must live under a rock. I'm in my mid-40s and only heard of a menstrual cup for the first time last year. And I have never heard of fabric pads.

I don't need either at this point in my life, but I probably would have been interested in a menstrual cup back when I needed that type of thing.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: Jardeny on April 14, 2016, 05:45:34 PM
Me after discovering menstrual cups...


(https://media.giphy.com/media/ceLygpJHjm3te/giphy.gif)

Serious love. My favorite aspect was better sleep, without having to shift side to side through the night, which would cause me to wake up with hip soreness in the morning. For stains, besides the hydrogen / water soak, I find dropping a denture cleaning tablet on a disposable cup with the Diva Cup also leaves it good as new.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: Zaga on April 14, 2016, 07:08:05 PM
Well I'm all healed up from having my uterus removed, and I have one very rarely used green Lady Cup size small that I'm happy to send to anyone who asks over PM.  (I also have a very well used small Lunette, same deal but not much life left in it.)  Oh, and homemade 3 layer flannel pantiliners.

All of which I will sterilize by boiling and wash several times before sending.

Glad to hear your surgery and recovery went well!

If you get a request from someone who doesn't have a cup yet, please send it to them. But if after a little while nobody else is interested, I'll happily take all of it!

I have a DivaCup that works reasonably well for me, but I can't use it at night because it always leaks. Always. Only at night. So I would love the chance to try another brand or two to see if the problem is with the DivaCup or with me (am I doing intense kegel-type gymnastics in my sleep or what? It's fine during the day!).
It's a deal!  I'll wait a week, then it's all yours!  Stems are cut short btw, when I had a cervix is was extremely low and the only way I could get the cup in was without a stem, and that just barely with the short cups.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: neophyte on June 23, 2016, 09:35:33 PM
Help!

I just found out I may be going backpacking (in bear country) over 4th of July weekend while menstruating!  I've never gone backpacking while on my period before so I don't know how to deal with it.  (Usually use tampons, can't stand pads at all, ever, under any circumstances.) It seems maybe a cup would be the way to go, but I'm nervous about only having a day or maybe two to get used to it before really putting it to the test. Also nervous about how to clean it in the woods.  Also probably worth noting, the people I'd be going with are not people I'd even be comfortable telling I was having my period, much less having to explain having to clean it or have them see blood on my hands or anything. Can I do this?

I'm honestly tempted to just skip my period if I can get my next pack of BC pills a little early, but that has its own problems.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: La Bibliotecaria Feroz on June 23, 2016, 10:02:47 PM
Help!

I just found out I may be going backpacking (in bear country) over 4th of July weekend while menstruating!  I've never gone backpacking while on my period before so I don't know how to deal with it.  (Usually use tampons, can't stand pads at all, ever, under any circumstances.) It seems maybe a cup would be the way to go, but I'm nervous about only having a day or maybe two to get used to it before really putting it to the test. Also nervous about how to clean it in the woods.  Also probably worth noting, the people I'd be going with are not people I'd even be comfortable telling I was having my period, much less having to explain having to clean it or have them see blood on my hands or anything? Can I do this?

I'm honestly tempted to just skip my period if I can get my next pack of BC pills a little early, but that has its own problems.

I would absolutely, positively NOT try a cup under the situation you described. Cleaning it and your hands properly would be impossible, so you'd be asking for an infection. Plus, it is hard to get it in properly at first. You might get spectacular leaks. And it can be uncomfortable. Even after a few cycles, sometimes I still have trouble getting it in right, and then I am cranky all day.

I would skip the period. Second choice, I would use tampons even though you would probably have to pack the used one out.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: Kouhri on June 24, 2016, 03:52:42 AM
So now a few cycles into using menstrual cups...
HOLY SHIT THESE HAVE CHANGED MY LIFE!!

First cycle was kinda hard working out how to get mine folded, comfortable, open, no leaks and how to take them out. But thanks to the magic of you tube worked it all out. And now it seems like the most natural thing ever, I love it!
I brought a few cloth pads at the same time as well to use in case of leaks and teething issues and would also highly recommend.

10 reasons switching to a menstrual cup has made my life better:
1)no more buying tampons or pads ever again
2)So much more comfortable, I never really liked the feeling of wearing disposable pads, they kinda got hot and sweaty and totally gross bloody, just generally unpleasant. I also disliked wearing tampons, I could always feel the darn things, like they would be properly positioned but the dawn string. I could always feel the darn strings. Plus there was always some leakage so I'd have to use a pad anyway.
3)able to monitor my flow so much easier. A little period blood looks like an indeterminate amount, unless it's neatly held in a cup 😊
4)showers and baths actually nice when I'm on my period. And no more oh shit I bled on the towel, and having to put it through the wash prematurely.
5)no more period smell paranoia in public
6)so much more convenient, everything you need to manage a period is on (in) your person the entire time. I hated always having to plan where I was going that day and how long and pack the appropriate 'sanitary items'
7)it's better for the environment! I'm no longer contributing huge needless quantities of slow to break down  crap into landfill.  And no more chucking used sanitary items in those (super gross usually blood stained) sanitary bins in public bathrooms
8) I get frequent opportunities to save the day when friends and colleagues are in need of a pad or tampon helping me to slowly whittle down  my (small) stock of sanitary supplies that I will NEVER use again if I can help it. With the one exception of post partum but I would need to buy new stuff then anyway
9)it has improved my sex life. Like it really actually has. I don't feel gross and non-sexy on my period. And period sex doesn't result in making it look like a crime scene. It makes more of a difference than you'd think.
10) maybe it's all of the above adding together, but now I just feel normal on my period. I'm not distracted throughout the day by thinking or worrying about my period : am I leaking? is it time to change a tampon? what clothes colour can I wear just in case? Do I smell? Shit I feel unwell did I leave a tampon in too long and am getting tss? Did I bring enough sanitary items for __? etc.

I am definitely a convert :)
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: rockstache on June 24, 2016, 08:02:06 AM
Does anyone use re-usable fabric pads?

I haven't tried menstrual cups bc pads are super uncomfortable for me. But I love fabric pads - cheaper long term and super comfortable.

I also like the advice about cleaning the cups.
How do women deal with changing cups at work?

Did you mean tampons are uncomfortable? I never got used to tampons, either, but I like my menstrual cup. (There's a learning curve, but I'm pushing through.)

I liked fabric pads at first, but I think I might have been on the pill when I started using them. I have heavier periods now and getting the blood out of the damn things enough to put them in the washing machine was gross. And they felt gross on heavy days and were impractical and uncomfortable for bike riding.

Another nice feature of the cup is that I can take a BATH when I feel menstrually gross! I know, tampon users have always had this option, but it's a whole new world for me.

Um...I guess this might be TMI (is there TMI in this thread?), but...I don't understand this. I always take a bath on my period, even on heavy flow days. When I used to use tampons I would take it out before getting in the bath. Nothing happens.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: With This Herring on June 24, 2016, 03:27:21 PM
So now a few cycles into using menstrual cups...
HOLY SHIT THESE HAVE CHANGED MY LIFE!!

*snip*
9)it has improved my sex life. Like it really actually has. I don't feel gross and non-sexy on my period. And period sex doesn't result in making it look like a crime scene. It makes more of a difference than you'd think.
*snip*

I am definitely a convert :)

Wait, what?  Are you wearing a cone-shaped menstrual cup while you have sex...somehow without injuring your partner?  Or are you wearing the little, disc-shaped, disposable ones that just cap the cervix?

*snip*

Another nice feature of the cup is that I can take a BATH when I feel menstrually gross! I know, tampon users have always had this option, but it's a whole new world for me.

Um...I guess this might be TMI (is there TMI in this thread?), but...I don't understand this. I always take a bath on my period, even on heavy flow days. When I used to use tampons I would take it out before getting in the bath. Nothing happens.

Sometimes being in water will temporarily slow/stop your flow.  Your heavy flow days might not be as heavy as FrugalParagon's, or your body might just react differently.  For me, the lighter the flow, the more likely it is to stop if I take a bath.  If my flow were really heavy and I tried to bathe without a cup in place, I would end up looking like Countess Bathory.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: neophyte on June 24, 2016, 08:34:55 PM
Help!

I just found out I may be going backpacking (in bear country) over 4th of July weekend while menstruating!  I've never gone backpacking while on my period before so I don't know how to deal with it.  (Usually use tampons, can't stand pads at all, ever, under any circumstances.) It seems maybe a cup would be the way to go, but I'm nervous about only having a day or maybe two to get used to it before really putting it to the test. Also nervous about how to clean it in the woods.  Also probably worth noting, the people I'd be going with are not people I'd even be comfortable telling I was having my period, much less having to explain having to clean it or have them see blood on my hands or anything? Can I do this?

I'm honestly tempted to just skip my period if I can get my next pack of BC pills a little early, but that has its own problems.

I would absolutely, positively NOT try a cup under the situation you described. Cleaning it and your hands properly would be impossible, so you'd be asking for an infection. Plus, it is hard to get it in properly at first. You might get spectacular leaks. And it can be uncomfortable. Even after a few cycles, sometimes I still have trouble getting it in right, and then I am cranky all day.

I would skip the period. Second choice, I would use tampons even though you would probably have to pack the used one out.

That's what I was afraid of.  A lot of backpacking articles recommend them, so there must be some way to keep them clean, but the learning curve and leaks are concerning.  If I can't get the pills, I'm going to see if I can find some eco-friendly biodegradable tampons or something. I don't think there is any way in the world that the guys I'm going with would let me put used tampons in our bear bag along with our food.  I'm also pretty worried about how they would smell after several days at 80/90 temps.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: decembeir on June 25, 2016, 12:23:48 AM
Quote
That's what I was afraid of.  A lot of backpacking articles recommend them, so there must be some way to keep them clean, but the learning curve and leaks are concerning.  If I can't get the pills, I'm going to see if I can find some eco-friendly biodegradable tampons or something. I don't think there is any way in the world that the guys I'm going with would let me put used tampons in our bear bag along with our food.  I'm also pretty worried about how they would smell after several days at 80/90 temps.

Many ladies, including myself, use Diva Cup or similar for backpacking since it weighs less, takes up less space in a pack, and it's contents are more easily disposed of than tampons. (Just a leave no trace recommendation- I wouldn't suggest burying tampons, even biodegradable ones if you manage to find any, because they would still likely take a long time to break down and could easily be dug up by critters... instead if you do use them I would pack them out.) Cup contents should be buried with other waste.

If you are just going on a short backpacking trip with a diva cup, you could get by without a thorough cleaning and instead simply empty and wipe out with some toilet paper before using again. Otherwise, cleaning is pretty easy just using some filtered or otherwise sterilized water from your water bottle with or without a bit of soap. Once you get back home you can do a deep clean/ boil if you want.

One great thing about menstrual cups is that you can practice getting the hang of them even before your period hits... so once you get your cup, get comfortable with it trying out various folds and practicing trying to get a good 'seal' (I use a "7" fold). Obviously you won't know for sure everything is working right until you try it under real world circumstances, but I've had zero problems with mine from day 1 of use. Everyone has different experiences with their cups though, so maybe consider bringing both the cup and some backup tampons on your trip.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: athiker10 on June 25, 2016, 01:30:44 PM
Quote
That's what I was afraid of.  A lot of backpacking articles recommend them, so there must be some way to keep them clean, but the learning curve and leaks are concerning.  If I can't get the pills, I'm going to see if I can find some eco-friendly biodegradable tampons or something. I don't think there is any way in the world that the guys I'm going with would let me put used tampons in our bear bag along with our food.  I'm also pretty worried about how they would smell after several days at 80/90 temps.

Many ladies, including myself, use Diva Cup or similar for backpacking since it weighs less, takes up less space in a pack, and it's contents are more easily disposed of than tampons. (Just a leave no trace recommendation- I wouldn't suggest burying tampons, even biodegradable ones if you manage to find any, because they would still likely take a long time to break down and could easily be dug up by critters... instead if you do use them I would pack them out.) Cup contents should be buried with other waste.

If you are just going on a short backpacking trip with a diva cup, you could get by without a thorough cleaning and instead simply empty and wipe out with some toilet paper before using again. Otherwise, cleaning is pretty easy just using some filtered or otherwise sterilized water from your water bottle with or without a bit of soap. Once you get back home you can do a deep clean/ boil if you want.

One great thing about menstrual cups is that you can practice getting the hang of them even before your period hits... so once you get your cup, get comfortable with it trying out various folds and practicing trying to get a good 'seal' (I use a "7" fold). Obviously you won't know for sure everything is working right until you try it under real world circumstances, but I've had zero problems with mine from day 1 of use. Everyone has different experiences with their cups though, so maybe consider bringing both the cup and some backup tampons on your trip.

Quoted for truth. I thru-hiked the Appalachian Trail and 90% of my period time on the trail I used a cup. I just took filtered/purified water with me when emptying to rinse off the cup. I also made sure to use hand sanitizer before/after ( as well as rinsing my hands). Not a big deal as long as you have enough purified water with you. Definitely used the woods rather than the privies though when emptying the cup. Too many flies to deal with in those.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: neophyte on June 25, 2016, 09:32:36 PM
The good news is I got the pills, so guess who's not having her period next week!   Thanks for the backpacking tips though, the cup really does seem to be the way to go for long trips. I'm just really nervous about relying on it without practice.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: Zaga on June 26, 2016, 08:17:04 AM
The good news is I got the pills, so guess who's not having her period next week!   Thanks for the backpacking tips though, the cup really does seem to be the way to go for long trips. I'm just really nervous about relying on it without practice.
I think you made the right choice.  I would have no hesitation about using a cup for backpacking - after I had used it for a few months!  The first month?  No way!
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: MicroRN on July 01, 2016, 06:15:05 PM
The good news is I got the pills, so guess who's not having her period next week!   Thanks for the backpacking tips though, the cup really does seem to be the way to go for long trips. I'm just really nervous about relying on it without practice.

That really sounds like the best idea.  It took me about 3-4 cycles before I got totally comfortable with the Divacup, and it was good to be near a real bathroom while getting used to it.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: lifejoy on July 03, 2016, 02:31:18 PM
I love cloth pads, but I'm finding that I just can't get the darn things clean enough to satisfy me. I pre-soak and everything. Has anyone else found that?

I'm thinking I'll try the diva cup.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: Zaga on July 03, 2016, 02:47:33 PM
I did have that issue with the cloth pads.  What I did to fight it is, after soaking and a good basic rinse in the sink to run it through the wash twice in one of those lingerie laundry bags, then let air dry.  I didn't do this every month, but every 2 or 3 seemed good enough.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: gatortator on September 16, 2016, 02:56:27 PM
I found this thread last year and just want to say a big THANK YOU to everyone on it.

I bought a Diva Cup (post pregnancy, larger size) back in January and love it.

The Diva Cup brings such a level of convenience and lower waste to my life.  In the 8 months, I've had it, the Diva Cup was with me:

1- on a 5 day inn to inn backpacking trip in Japan.  Wonderful!  so glad I didn't have to carry pads or tampons with me when I realized the calendar for my trip.
2- on one car camping trip with only outhouses. again no real issues and loved with low waste aspect.


I do have one question for everyone here.  Apologies if this has been answered already ( I don't remember reading it).  I have an 8 year old daughter, who will be starting her flow in a few years.  How have you handled menstrual cups with your daughter? 
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: TOgirl on September 23, 2016, 08:21:30 AM
I've tried to read the whole thread, so apologies if this has been discussed already...

I've had a Diva Cup for about 3 years and love it. Recently I've got an IUD. Any success stories out there of these being used together when needed? (it's a hormonal IUD, so hoping it actually cuts out the need for a cup altogether at some point)

Thanks!
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: rockstache on September 23, 2016, 10:52:46 AM


I do have one question for everyone here.  Apologies if this has been answered already ( I don't remember reading it).  I have an 8 year old daughter, who will be starting her flow in a few years.  How have you handled menstrual cups with your daughter?

I don't have a daughter. But I WAS a daughter once (still am in fact), and in thinking about this question, I thought about my own first period experience which was rather...embarrassing. Thanks Nana.

If I did have a daughter, I think I would buy a (small) menstrual cup and give it to her at some point before I think she is going to get her period. Maybe not 8, but 10/11 or so. Give her some time to practice with it without having her period and just in general get comfortable with the idea of a period, and thinking about what that means as a woman. I don't mean that in a philosophical way, but in more of a reproductive your-body-is-amazing kind of way. The cool thing about the cup is that you can wear it anytime, not just when you actually have your period. She can try putting it in and wearing it around to get comfortable. The other great thing is that until her friends start talking about it, all her knowledge is going to come from you. If you introduce the cup prior to that, she won't really ever know any different.

Also, I do use cloth panty liners on heavy flow days just so I feel confident. A pre-teen would probably need this confidence even more, so I would order a few cloth pads off etsy for her too.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: La Bibliotecaria Feroz on September 23, 2016, 01:30:35 PM


I do have one question for everyone here.  Apologies if this has been answered already ( I don't remember reading it).  I have an 8 year old daughter, who will be starting her flow in a few years.  How have you handled menstrual cups with your daughter?

I don't have a daughter. But I WAS a daughter once (still am in fact), and in thinking about this question, I thought about my own first period experience which was rather...embarrassing. Thanks Nana.

If I did have a daughter, I think I would buy a (small) menstrual cup and give it to her at some point before I think she is going to get her period. Maybe not 8, but 10/11 or so. Give her some time to practice with it without having her period and just in general get comfortable with the idea of a period, and thinking about what that means as a woman. I don't mean that in a philosophical way, but in more of a reproductive your-body-is-amazing kind of way. The cool thing about the cup is that you can wear it anytime, not just when you actually have your period. She can try putting it in and wearing it around to get comfortable. The other great thing is that until her friends start talking about it, all her knowledge is going to come from you. If you introduce the cup prior to that, she won't really ever know any different.

Also, I do use cloth panty liners on heavy flow days just so I feel confident. A pre-teen would probably need this confidence even more, so I would order a few cloth pads off etsy for her too.

Honestly, I can't imagine a little girl using something that giant. One cup manufacturer suggests starting with tampons (OK, this place sells reusable sea sponge tampons that they suggest) instead of going right to a cup.

Thinx might be another good option for a young girl if she can fit them. More comfy than pads.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: Moonwaves on September 23, 2016, 02:28:11 PM
I do have one question for everyone here.  Apologies if this has been answered already ( I don't remember reading it).  I have an 8 year old daughter, who will be starting her flow in a few years.  How have you handled menstrual cups with your daughter?
I don't have a daughter but I don't see that you should handle it any differently than you would pads or tampons. She will probably see you using yours - I know I certainly found out what sanitary towels were because I saw my mum using them and asked (the answer "just something women need to use when they're grown-up" was more than enough for my then, I think, four-year-old self). At eight, she might be past the age of wanting to follow you into the bathroom but she might at least see you boiling it, for example, and so be aware of its existence. Had you given any thought to how to approach the topic of tampons and pads? It shouldn't be all that different. I think the most important thing is probably just to give her the gift of knowledge (of all the options - disposable and non-disposable) and then let her choose for herself what she wants to do. It takes all kinds but it may well be that at least at the beginning she's happier with pads or panty liners. If she's interested in those, and would like to get some cloth ones, you can have fun choosing patterns she likes. I'd be interested in hearing what others who actually have kids think of this, too, though.

And for what it's worth, the mooncup site is pretty good for FAQs and has an email advice service, too. Why not send them the question, too (divacup may have a similar service, too, I suppose) but I know mooncup does. Here's the answer to the question of whether you can use it when you've just started your period: http://www.mooncup.co.uk/using-mooncup/can-i-use-the-mooncup-if-ive-just-started-my-periods/ (http://www.mooncup.co.uk/using-mooncup/can-i-use-the-mooncup-if-ive-just-started-my-periods/)
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: decembeir on September 23, 2016, 02:59:43 PM
I just checked my email history to verify when I first purchased my Diva cup and found that it just celebrated its 5th birthday. Happy birthday Diva Cup! It shows zero signs of wear and tear beyond some minor discoloration, so I see no reason why it won't continue to be fully operational for an additional 5+ years. I purchased it brand new off ebay for $21.50... so that puts me at a cost of about 36 cents per period so far. I really can't extol the virtues of Diva cups enough... I honestly would continue using it even if it somehow cost more than using tampons. Here's hoping I can get the cost per period down to 18 cents or lower!
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: Bracken_Joy on September 23, 2016, 06:31:36 PM
I just checked my email history to verify when I first purchased my Diva cup and found that it just celebrated its 5th birthday. Happy birthday Diva Cup! It shows zero signs of wear and tear beyond some minor discoloration, so I see no reason why it won't continue to be fully operational for an additional 5+ years. I purchased it brand new off ebay for $21.50... so that puts me at a cost of about 36 cents per period so far. I really can't extol the virtues of Diva cups enough... I honestly would continue using it even if it somehow cost more than using tampons. Here's hoping I can get the cost per period down to 18 cents or lower!

Re: the discoloring. Someone upthread recommended the hydrogen peroxide and water soak. I did that, and my (6? 8?) year old Dive Cup looks new again. It's probably just vanity, but it makes it feel "cleaner" somehow.

But +1 for me for many years, still in great shape.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: Anatidae V on September 23, 2016, 09:11:14 PM
I do have one question for everyone here.  Apologies if this has been answered already ( I don't remember reading it).  I have an 8 year old daughter, who will be starting her flow in a few years.  How have you handled menstrual cups with your daughter?
I don't have a daughter but I don't see that you should handle it any differently than you would pads or tampons. She will probably see you using yours - I know I certainly found out what sanitary towels were because I saw my mum using them and asked (the answer "just something women need to use when they're grown-up" was more than enough for my then, I think, four-year-old self). At eight, she might be past the age of wanting to follow you into the bathroom but she might at least see you boiling it, for example, and so be aware of its existence. Had you given any thought to how to approach the topic of tampons and pads? It shouldn't be all that different. I think the most important thing is probably just to give her the gift of knowledge (of all the options - disposable and non-disposable) and then let her choose for herself what she wants to do. It takes all kinds but it may well be that at least at the beginning she's happier with pads or panty liners. If she's interested in those, and would like to get some cloth ones, you can have fun choosing patterns she likes. I'd be interested in hearing what others who actually have kids think of this, too, though.

And for what it's worth, the mooncup site is pretty good for FAQs and has an email advice service, too. Why not send them the question, too (divacup may have a similar service, too, I suppose) but I know mooncup does. Here's the answer to the question of whether you can use it when you've just started your period: http://www.mooncup.co.uk/using-mooncup/can-i-use-the-mooncup-if-ive-just-started-my-periods/ (http://www.mooncup.co.uk/using-mooncup/can-i-use-the-mooncup-if-ive-just-started-my-periods/)
my mum gave me some pads to carry in my backpack so if my first period came while i was at school, I'd be ok (it did, at 13). I don't recall exploring my vagina even after it did and I couldn't get my head around the idea of there being space inside me, so I never even tried to use tampons. Providing some healthy internet links, instructions and a tiny one is a good idea, but it might not work for her until she's an older teenager. Giving her a couple of options so she can choose what works for her is probably the best way, as then she can do what feels comfortable.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: TOgirl on September 26, 2016, 08:40:53 AM
I have a mirena IUD and I use a diva cup. I've had it 3 years. I think my dr said to not use the cup the first month after the insertion but it's been fine since then. I probably only get a period once very 3 months or so now with the IUD.

Thanks so much for the response. I'm hoping to be able to continue using mine as well.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: mskyle on September 26, 2016, 11:49:49 AM
I just checked my email history to verify when I first purchased my Diva cup and found that it just celebrated its 5th birthday. Happy birthday Diva Cup! It shows zero signs of wear and tear beyond some minor discoloration, so I see no reason why it won't continue to be fully operational for an additional 5+ years. I purchased it brand new off ebay for $21.50... so that puts me at a cost of about 36 cents per period so far. I really can't extol the virtues of Diva cups enough... I honestly would continue using it even if it somehow cost more than using tampons. Here's hoping I can get the cost per period down to 18 cents or lower!

Re: the discoloring. Someone upthread recommended the hydrogen peroxide and water soak. I did that, and my (6? 8?) year old Dive Cup looks new again. It's probably just vanity, but it makes it feel "cleaner" somehow.

But +1 for me for many years, still in great shape.

The H2O2 soak really works wonders - makes it look like new! I wash mine with soap regularly and soak every couple of months.

It really is amazing how easy and cheap they are. I've probably spent $80 on cups - two diva cups still in rotation (I keep one in my suitcase) and an old natural rubber one that just got kind of gross and sticky after a year or two - but they're all I've used for 10-plus years now (plus maybe $3 worth of panty liners a year), and I strongly suspect that my ovaries are going to wear out before the diva cups do.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: Chranstronaut on October 18, 2016, 07:28:23 AM
Serious love. My favorite aspect was better sleep, without having to shift side to side through the night, which would cause me to wake up with hip soreness in the morning. For stains, besides the hydrogen / water soak, I find dropping a denture cleaning tablet on a disposable cup with the Diva Cup also leaves it good as new.

THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU!  That tip about the denture tab revived my cup.  I was struggling with stains that could only partially be removed by scrubbing with baking soda.  I was wondering if I would need to replace it soon (it's only 3 years old).  After soaking about 12 hours in a glass with a denture cleaner tab, my cup is so clean! For anyone else trying this for the first time, don't be afraid to leave your cup in there a whole night or day.  I checked on my cup around hour 5 and it was noticeably less stained, but not as much as after the full 12 hours.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: thecrazydoglady on October 26, 2016, 09:32:40 AM
LOVED my Divacup but recently got a copper IUD and have been scared to use it again. Thanks to this thread i think i'm going to give it a try. My periods have gotten much heavier (still worth it if you ask me) and if i don't go back to the cup i'm afraid i might go bankrupt...
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: LadyStache in Baja on October 26, 2016, 12:06:10 PM
LOVED my Divacup but recently got a copper IUD and have been scared to use it again. Thanks to this thread i think i'm going to give it a try. My periods have gotten much heavier (still worth it if you ask me) and if i don't go back to the cup i'm afraid i might go bankrupt...

Yep, i have a copper iud and my periods are really heavy.  I can fill a Diva in 2 hours!  Which means that trying to catch all that with a tampon or pad is literally impossible.  I think a cup is the only way.  And I still need backup, at least in the early days.

Thinking about getting some THINX underwear.  Have you all seen those?!
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: Chranstronaut on November 14, 2016, 02:05:07 PM
I've seen the THINX ads online, but don't know anyone using them.  Also curious for feedback on comfort and if you can feel them as they fill up.  With past UTI/yeast issues, I am hesitant to wear synthetic undies.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: SisterX on November 14, 2016, 08:29:56 PM
Just a word to the wise cup user: don't cut up, say, serrano peppers (spicy) and then change your cup. Even after washing your hands four or five times with dish soap and then taking a shower, still don't.
You can probably guess how I know this.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: Moonwaves on November 15, 2016, 03:09:27 AM
Just a word to the wise cup user: don't cut up, say, serrano peppers (spicy) and then change your cup. Even after washing your hands four or five times with dish soap and then taking a shower, still don't.
You can probably guess how I know this.
Yikes! Normally I like MMM's policy on emojis but this feels like one of those rare posts where words just cannot adequately express a reply. Hope the effects didn't last too long!
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: La Bibliotecaria Feroz on November 15, 2016, 07:21:12 AM
I've seen the THINX ads online, but don't know anyone using them.  Also curious for feedback on comfort and if you can feel them as they fill up.  With past UTI/yeast issues, I am hesitant to wear synthetic undies.

My sister and I are both fans. I wear mine as cup backup on heavy days and solo on less-heavy ones. They do start to feel wet if you are really free-bleeding.

They are my favorite we've-got-this solution. Cup overflow on an airplane? We've got this. Substitute teaching, not sure if my period will start in earnest so I don't want to wear a cup, but if it does start, I won't be able to get to the bathroom right away? We've got this.

We both only like the hiphugger. Sports ones were no good. I wish they came up higher, though. These tend to roll into my c-section pouch and I always want to yank them higher in the back.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: SisterX on November 15, 2016, 08:55:57 AM
Just a word to the wise cup user: don't cut up, say, serrano peppers (spicy) and then change your cup. Even after washing your hands four or five times with dish soap and then taking a shower, still don't.
You can probably guess how I know this.
Yikes! Normally I like MMM's policy on emojis but this feels like one of those rare posts where words just cannot adequately express a reply. Hope the effects didn't last too long!

Haha, no it didn't last that long. And it was just a very mild sensation, thank goodness, not a true burning-lady-parts feeling.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: With This Herring on November 15, 2016, 09:50:41 AM
Just a word to the wise cup user: don't cut up, say, serrano peppers (spicy) and then change your cup. Even after washing your hands four or five times with dish soap and then taking a shower, still don't.
You can probably guess how I know this.
Yikes! Normally I like MMM's policy on emojis but this feels like one of those rare posts where words just cannot adequately express a reply. Hope the effects didn't last too long!

Haha, no it didn't last that long. And it was just a very mild sensation, thank goodness, not a true burning-lady-parts feeling.

*chokes*  Oh boy.  I would warn those who wear contact lenses that the same applies to them, except that your eyes are even more sensitive and there will be actual pain.  To avoid this, I take the produce bag that held the serranos (or the cilantro, which I use at the same time), stick my non-knife hand in it, and wrap the excess around my wrist so I can touch the peppers without fear.  This would be my only use for plastic gloves, so I find it simpler to use the bags.

I've seen the THINX ads online, but don't know anyone using them.  Also curious for feedback on comfort and if you can feel them as they fill up.  With past UTI/yeast issues, I am hesitant to wear synthetic undies.
*snip*
They are my favorite we've-got-this solution. Cup overflow on an airplane? We've got this. Substitute teaching, not sure if my period will start in earnest so I don't want to wear a cup, but if it does start, I won't be able to get to the bathroom right away? We've got this.
*snip*

For this, why not just wear a cup?  I think one of the huge benefits is that you can wear them, and comfortably!, without your period being in full-force, unlike tampons.  If I know the flow is coming, I will pop in the cup early (of course then I still clean it twice a day).
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: OutlierinMA on December 05, 2016, 03:46:37 PM
Just saw this and had to share - I'm so happy this will help other folks discover the wonder of the cup:

http://thesweethome.com/reviews/best-menstrual-cup/
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: ariapluscat on December 06, 2016, 10:20:45 AM
since this thread was revived, i just want to say that for thanksgiving i got myself some more reusable pads bc they were a thing i was really grateful this year
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: rachellynn99 on December 09, 2016, 08:05:07 PM
I use cloth reusable pads. I never did like tampons, so wasn't sure if I would like a DivaCup. I bought some cloth pads for about $30 for a set about 4 years ago. I haven't bought a pad since. Not sure how much I'm saving by not having to buy monthly supplies, but I like less trash if nothing else.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: MVal on December 09, 2016, 08:49:47 PM
I have a DivaCup, but I don't find it all that comfortable.  I've never liked tampons either.  I like cloth pads though.  There are the disposable cups (Instead) that I've seen at the regular stores, but I bought my DivaCup online. 

IUDs are also awesome, although I happen to have a baby courtesy of ParaGard.  Unfortunately 99.4% effective does not equal 100% effective!  I've been pretty happy with the Mirena too.  Definitely cost effective though.  I paid a $20 office visit copay for the Paragard, for something that should last at least 10 years.

I also didn't find the DivaCup very comfortable and don't like how tampons feel either. The DivaCup was mainly too difficult/painful to get in and out and that's why I didn't like it. I like the idea of it though, and kudos to those who have eliminated their pad or tampon use with it.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: With This Herring on December 09, 2016, 09:04:27 PM
I have a DivaCup, but I don't find it all that comfortable.  I've never liked tampons either.  I like cloth pads though.  There are the disposable cups (Instead) that I've seen at the regular stores, but I bought my DivaCup online. 

I also didn't find the DivaCup very comfortable and don't like how tampons feel either. The DivaCup was mainly too difficult/painful to get in and out and that's why I didn't like it. I like the idea of it though, and kudos to those who have eliminated their pad or tampon use with it.

The few times I tried tampons they were very painful, but my cup (DivaCup) has been wonderful.  Perhaps softer and/or smaller cups would work better for you two?  The DivaCup is comparatively large and not-soft.

I made two reusable pads for my sister as backup for her cup (heavy heavy flow).  There are plenty of patterns that are free online.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: La Bibliotecaria Feroz on December 10, 2016, 06:56:45 AM
Another non-tampon user who swears by the cup. I have a small Lena cup. On heavy days it has to be emptied off and on one memorable occasion it overflowed on an airplane, but I prefer to go with the smaller capacity to make it easier to insert. I wear Thinx as backup.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: abby1234519 on December 12, 2016, 07:21:29 AM
I've just gone on to the amazon website, two packs of heavy pads and one pack of thin pads + a cup is about £90

Wow....that's a lot of money. I've been "lucky" enough to avoid needing lady things as I'm overweight so periods stopped. However I've started to lose weight and I'm dreading the day I need to buy tampons. There's a box under my bed unopened since my son was born. 5 years ago...
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: With This Herring on December 12, 2016, 07:59:16 AM
I've just gone on to the amazon website, two packs of heavy pads and one pack of thin pads + a cup is about £90

There are a LOT of brands out there.  Is the cup brand you found on Amazon an import?  In the US, the DivaCup is around $24, which should be around £19.  Is Amazon possibly advertising a bundle that is more expensive than its components?  You can make your own pads or probably find cheaper ones.  Some forums suggest that mothers just use a small, old cloth diaper.  Old washcloths/flannels/facecloths work well to catch light overflow, as do handkerchiefs.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: PMG on December 12, 2016, 08:00:30 AM
I've just gone on to the amazon website, two packs of heavy pads and one pack of thin pads + a cup is about £90

Wow....that's a lot of money. I've been "lucky" enough to avoid needing lady things as I'm overweight so periods stopped. However I've started to lose weight and I'm dreading the day I need to buy tampons. There's a box under my bed unopened since my son was born. 5 years ago...

I don't know your sewing skills but they are some reasonable diy options for reusable pads. I find the ones that come apart into several layers or unfold are easier to keep clean. 

I bought my cup on Amazon, but I think it wasn't Diva brand, I am not sure of the brand anymore, but it cost less than Diva. Check out other options.

I've spent around $5 on menstruation products in the past 3 years.

I've not gotten completely comfortable with the cup, so I do like to keep a few traditional products around for back up. I was frustrated at first, because the cup was supposed to be the end of all products, but even though I don't use it exclusively it has drastically cut down my use of product, reduced my spending and reduced my contribution to land fills.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: abby1234519 on December 12, 2016, 08:02:44 AM
I've just gone on to the amazon website, two packs of heavy pads and one pack of thin pads + a cup is about £90

There are a LOT of brands out there.  Is the cup brand you found on Amazon an import?  In the US, the DivaCup is around $24, which should be around £19.  Is Amazon possibly advertising a bundle that is more expensive than its components?  You can make your own pads or probably find cheaper ones.  Some forums suggest that mothers just use a small, old cloth diaper.  Old washcloths/flannels/facecloths work well to catch light overflow, as do handkerchiefs.

Actually it was the cup that wasn't expensive. Diva Cup's about £30 (prices never translate really) but I found one with good reviews for £9.

The pads, I'm useless with a sewing machine. I actually bought one 3 years ago and it's still at my friends! I quite liked that the pads on amazon had popper buttons so you could keep it secure. Perhaps I should buy those and then in future I can learn to make my own. It wasn't a bundle, it was everything on its own. £90 would be okay if they all lasted for at least 3 years?
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: PMG on December 12, 2016, 08:07:27 AM
I've just gone on to the amazon website, two packs of heavy pads and one pack of thin pads + a cup is about £90

Wow....that's a lot of money. I've been "lucky" enough to avoid needing lady things as I'm overweight so periods stopped. However I've started to lose weight and I'm dreading the day I need to buy tampons. There's a box under my bed unopened since my son was born. 5 years ago...

Double replying. Sorry.

I've been a bigger girl most of my life, recently lost a little weight.  The best thing about DIY pads is that you can make them the size you need for your body and your flow.  None of the one size fits most when "most" means a thin model. For overnights I often just fold a piece of flannel and count on my panties and leggings to keep it in place. It's so much more comfortable and less leakage.

Of course, YMMV.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: MVal on December 12, 2016, 09:04:38 AM
I've just gone on to the amazon website, two packs of heavy pads and one pack of thin pads + a cup is about £90

There are a LOT of brands out there.  Is the cup brand you found on Amazon an import?  In the US, the DivaCup is around $24, which should be around £19.  Is Amazon possibly advertising a bundle that is more expensive than its components?  You can make your own pads or probably find cheaper ones.  Some forums suggest that mothers just use a small, old cloth diaper.  Old washcloths/flannels/facecloths work well to catch light overflow, as do handkerchiefs.


I have some reusable pads, but I never use them because they are just too inconvenient. If I'm out somewhere and need to change it, I don't want to have to carry around this used pad in a ziplock, nor do I really want to have to mess with having to wash it out in the sink and then make sure it went through the laundry before my next period.
Actually it was the cup that wasn't expensive. Diva Cup's about £30 (prices never translate really) but I found one with good reviews for £9.

The pads, I'm useless with a sewing machine. I actually bought one 3 years ago and it's still at my friends! I quite liked that the pads on amazon had popper buttons so you could keep it secure. Perhaps I should buy those and then in future I can learn to make my own. It wasn't a bundle, it was everything on its own. £90 would be okay if they all lasted for at least 3 years?
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: Moonwaves on December 12, 2016, 02:16:09 PM
I've just gone on to the amazon website, two packs of heavy pads and one pack of thin pads + a cup is about £90

Wow....that's a lot of money. I've been "lucky" enough to avoid needing lady things as I'm overweight so periods stopped. However I've started to lose weight and I'm dreading the day I need to buy tampons. There's a box under my bed unopened since my son was born. 5 years ago...
How many is in two packs of pads? If you're using the cup, you most likely won't need heavy pads (different for everyone of course, but that's a more likely than not scenario I think). Even if you do buy that many, I'd be expecting them to last a whole lot longer than three years. I started off with 12 pads (4 heavy, 4 regular, 4 light) about ten years ago and they're still going strong. The ones that were cool bright pink and blue stripes have faded to a bit nondescript now but the black ones with white flowers still look the same. Since I started using a Mooncup I don't need the pads really but I just use them now as pantyliners so they actually get more regular use than they did at the beginning, since I use one daily. I bought a three-pack of I got my original twelve from weenotions  (http://www.weenotions.co.uk/fairy-hammocks.html), checking there now, a six-pack costs around twenty-five pounds so what you've seen on amazon is probably about right. But, check out the price of a packet of whatever it is you would have normally used and figure out how much you would spend in a month. I'm 42 now and don't really anticipate ever needing to spend money on this kind of thing again. Except that some of the new fabrics I've just seen on the weenotions site are kind of cool, so now I'm tempted... :)
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: abby1234519 on December 13, 2016, 01:59:24 AM
I've just gone on to the amazon website, two packs of heavy pads and one pack of thin pads + a cup is about £90

Wow....that's a lot of money. I've been "lucky" enough to avoid needing lady things as I'm overweight so periods stopped. However I've started to lose weight and I'm dreading the day I need to buy tampons. There's a box under my bed unopened since my son was born. 5 years ago...
How many is in two packs of pads? If you're using the cup, you most likely won't need heavy pads (different for everyone of course, but that's a more likely than not scenario I think). Even if you do buy that many, I'd be expecting them to last a whole lot longer than three years. I started off with 12 pads (4 heavy, 4 regular, 4 light) about ten years ago and they're still going strong. The ones that were cool bright pink and blue stripes have faded to a bit nondescript now but the black ones with white flowers still look the same. Since I started using a Mooncup I don't need the pads really but I just use them now as pantyliners so they actually get more regular use than they did at the beginning, since I use one daily. I bought a three-pack of I got my original twelve from weenotions  (http://www.weenotions.co.uk/fairy-hammocks.html), checking there now, a six-pack costs around twenty-five pounds so what you've seen on amazon is probably about right. But, check out the price of a packet of whatever it is you would have normally used and figure out how much you would spend in a month. I'm 42 now and don't really anticipate ever needing to spend money on this kind of thing again. Except that some of the new fabrics I've just seen on the weenotions site are kind of cool, so now I'm tempted... :)

Two heavy packs would be 10 pads, then a pack of lighter ones would be another 5 pads.
I canít see me using a mooncup at night to be honest, obviously I donít really have any idea so I might do!

These were the pads

https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B018TVX49A/ref=ox_sc_act_title_2?ie=UTF8&psc=1&smid=A4ZEG3ZSIRCER

This is the cup

https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B00NQ56KW8/ref=ox_sc_act_title_1?ie=UTF8&psc=1&smid=A3RP0P0B5R4FU5

But Iíll have a look at the website youíve suggested, I donít need them right this second so I can save but I anticipate needing them in a month or so
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: Moonwaves on December 13, 2016, 05:45:49 AM
I canít see me using a mooncup at night to be honest, obviously I donít really have any idea so I might do!

These were the pads

https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B018TVX49A/ref=ox_sc_act_title_2?ie=UTF8&psc=1&smid=A4ZEG3ZSIRCER

This is the cup

https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B00NQ56KW8/ref=ox_sc_act_title_1?ie=UTF8&psc=1&smid=A3RP0P0B5R4FU5

But Iíll have a look at the website youíve suggested, I donít need them right this second so I can save but I anticipate needing them in a month or so
The pads are probably more or less the same wherever you get them. If you can get a tester pack with one of each size to try out first, that might help you decide. I look at those one on amazon for example and all I can think of is that it looks like kind of warm material - the last thing I need is more heat. But perhaps the material just looks like that and isn't in actuality. I will admit that when I got mine I was disappointed that the top material was not at all, as promised, "like your normal underwear" - but that's because I'm a cotton briefs only kind of girl. For lots of people the slightly synthetic shiny material really would have been just like their normal pants. There are so many options, at some stage you just have to go for it. But maybe try ordering just one pack, or a sample pack first rather than spending a whole lot on one type and then not liking them.

Also, mooncup at night is one of the best things about it! Actually, the first couple of times I tried it, I only used it at night and then on a lounging around at home day. I wanted any potential issues to come up while I was close to my own bathroom and had plenty of privacy. Considering I hadn't chopped enough of the stem off at all, I'm really glad I stayed home, too. Have you read the review link someone posted just above? It seemed like pretty good information on all the different types of cups.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: pattycakepdx on February 03, 2017, 10:06:50 AM
I just want to add Thinx period underwear to this! I've used a Diva Cup for years and love it. But thanks to birth control, my flow is sometimes so light that it feels like overkill. These underwear are awesome and so comfortable for those other days. I have friends who use them for heavy days too, but I prefer to keep them for lighter days especially since that means I can own fewer pairs.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: nara on February 08, 2017, 07:50:17 PM
I just want to add Thinx period underwear to this! I've used a Diva Cup for years and love it. But thanks to birth control, my flow is sometimes so light that it feels like overkill. These underwear are awesome and so comfortable for those other days. I have friends who use them for heavy days too, but I prefer to keep them for lighter days especially since that means I can own fewer pairs.

Yes! THINX is an amazing company. With their underwear and my diva cup, I have saved a lot of cash wasted on disposable, non-environmental, and unhealthy products. Read about the chemicals in tampons. Scary stuff!!!
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: PMG on February 08, 2017, 07:53:20 PM
Smart menstrual cup that tracks your flow.

https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/700989404/looncup-the-worlds-first-smart-menstrual-cup
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: With This Herring on February 09, 2017, 11:03:20 AM
Smart menstrual cup that tracks your flow.

https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/700989404/looncup-the-worlds-first-smart-menstrual-cup

First, I think the idea is creepy.  What if someone hacks it?  Ugh.

Second, you can't boil it or trim off the stem (which most women do) because it contains electronics.

Third, did you see the battery info?!
Quote
Battery   6 Months
Varies depending on usage pattern,
non-rechargeable, non-replaceable

They are estimating that they will sell these things at $50/each with an additional $20 for shipping.  That is a crazy price for something that must be replaced twice a year to maintain its function.

Also, apparently they are having issues with the phone connection thing and have set it to vibrate instead (?!).
https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/700989404/looncup-the-worlds-first-smart-menstrual-cup/comments
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: fuzzy math on February 24, 2017, 08:13:52 PM
I had a keeper in college 17 yrs ago. It was horrible and painful and leaked.
I have a moon cup now (can be bought on vita cost, frequently on sale!) and it's flexible and great and rarely leaks. It's gotten to the point now that tampons bother me in comparison. Don't give up if you haven't found your match at first!!
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: FIREd_up! on June 23, 2017, 07:14:41 AM
I just got the Diva cup off Amazon a few months ago, although I've seen them in regular stores like Safeway. It's a bit of a learning curve and I'm still at the point where it occasionally leaks and it's not like I can't feel it at all. BUT considering how much money it will save me not to mention how much better it is for the environment I'm going to continue to use it anyway.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: SquirrelStache on June 23, 2017, 08:48:48 AM
I've used a Diva cup for years, and yes it does take some getting used to. Having to "fold" the cup to get it where it needs to be means I don't always get a tight seal (i.e. leaks). I've found running my finger around the top lip after insertion helps smooth that out. You can also lean it to one side to let some of the air back in to help as well (beware doing this in public though as it makes an awesome sound!). Overall though, it's very much worth the money savings.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: With This Herring on June 23, 2017, 09:09:19 AM
If you're inserting it at home, washing/rinsing it in very warm water for a bit brings it closer to body temperature and softens the silicone enough so that you feel it less.  Sometimes I also need to, ah, "pull" in with my muscles after inserting so that the trimmed-off stem-end isn't poking at the wrong angle or too low.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: rockstache on June 23, 2017, 09:49:53 AM
....have set it to vibrate instead (?!).
https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/700989404/looncup-the-worlds-first-smart-menstrual-cup/comments

I will seriously consider purchasing the cup that can be set to vibrate.



Sorry...I just couldn't help myself.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: marcela on June 23, 2017, 12:03:21 PM
I was just talked into a menstrual cup back in May at my friend's bachelorette party. Apparently about a bottle's worth of champagne and 4 hours of girl talk were what was needed to get me to order it.
Its the lilly cup and was around $40 on amazon. For all the tiny vagina/low cervix havers out there, this one is collapsible. It smooshes down to fit in a little compact looking case and you can wear it with it partially collapsed as well. Super comfortable and it was my first period in 18 years that I had no leaks. I LOVE it.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: Tass on August 04, 2017, 10:20:12 AM
This company is "selling" a set of two different-sized cups for only the cost of shipping: https://rebelkate.com/products/your-free-menstrual-cup (https://rebelkate.com/products/your-free-menstrual-cup)

They're pretty open about the fact that it's a cheap cup and they're hoping you'll like it enough to buy a nicer one, but it seems like a good opportunity to try it out without much commitment. Shipping still works out to $11 for me in SoCal but cheaper than any other trustworthy cup.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: narrative on August 19, 2017, 10:40:27 AM
I have used a Diva Cup for almost 5 years. I didn't like it at first - the little stem was poky. Until I came across a review on amazon that changed it all with one simple suggestion -

Turn the cup INSIDE OUT.

:)

That way the little stem is on the inside and there is no more poking. Cup still works the same way. That simple tip made all the difference in usability and comfort and saved me a ton of cash. Hope it can help someone else too.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: brookebcollin on September 01, 2017, 01:32:56 AM
I've always used pads and tampons but I'm considering buying the cup. However, I still haven't figured out how you manage it in a public restroom...
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: Moonwaves on September 01, 2017, 03:45:26 AM
I've always used pads and tampons but I'm considering buying the cup. However, I still haven't figured out how you manage it in a public restroom...
I just bring a bottle of water in with me and use that to rinse it out. It works better than I thought it would when I first heard about people doing that. My first time was a bit difficult but after that has always been fine. And that may have been because that first time was in the toilets at Geneva airport and although they were plenty roomy, between me (not one of the smaller women you'll ever meet), my suitcase, my backpack, and the big shopping bag full of stuff I also had, there just wasn't quite enough room to manoeuvre easily. Minus all the luggage, even in smaller cubicles, I've never really had any issues.

Oh, and for what it's worth, I usually need about 350-400ml of water to properly rinse mine, so a 500ml bottle is more than enough.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: nickybecky1 on September 01, 2017, 12:27:46 PM
I've used a water bottle but I've only ever used it when camping. There's a pretty large capacity on the cups so I usually just clean it in the morning (at home) and at night (at home) and don't worry about it at all during the day. If I had a very heavy flow though, I might need to rinse during the day and a water bottle does totally work.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: With This Herring on September 03, 2017, 10:30:27 AM
If you have a heavier flow, you will have to dump the cup mid-day at least once.  I dump, wipe it inside and out with a bit of toilet paper, and shove it back in.  It's fine to wait to wash it properly until you are back home.

Sometimes, at work, I used to dump it, wipe it, then covertly hold it in my hand to wash it in one of the sinks in the row, then gone back in a stall to re-insert.  I would only do it when I didn't think there was anyone else in the bathroom, and it didn't seem to be much improvement over just wiping out the cup.

But, in retrospect I'm not sure that it would have been a big deal if anyone else saw the cup, as long as I didn't bring a huge amount of blood to the sink with it.  It was a women-only bathroom, and it's not like the sinks are used for anything but post-toilet washing.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: Ms Ida on September 04, 2017, 10:38:35 AM
Trying the XOFlo from Gladrags and think it is going to take some practice. I don't think it should be so uncomfortable removing.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: marcela on September 05, 2017, 07:30:51 AM
Trying the XOFlo from Gladrags and think it is going to take some practice. I don't think it should be so uncomfortable removing.
There first time I went to take out my cup, I was worried I was going to need to go to a doctor or something to get it out. It took a good 20 minutes and much contortioning of my body before I got it. Now I can pop out that sucker in no time at all.
As to the concerns above about dumping it in a public restroom, the few times I've needed to I would use the handicapped stall that had a sink in it. Usually though, I can wait until I get home to dump it out and with no worry about TSS, I feel comfortable doing that.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: Ms Ida on September 05, 2017, 09:26:44 PM
The good news is I have noted to call the DR yet! So far I have trimmed off most of the stem so it is a little more comfortable but hard to grab to remove. I am glad to hear it will get easier with practice but I am not super excited right now about the practice :)
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: JLR on September 06, 2017, 04:35:46 AM
It's not too hard to get out, Ms Ida. Have you ever had a vaginal delivery? Just bear down, and it pops down nice and low.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: Ms Ida on September 07, 2017, 10:45:03 PM
No vaginal deliveries. It got easier to remove but the cup still felt really really wide when removing. I will give it another couple cycles but I wonder if maybe I should think about a smaller cup. I was interested in a larger volume cup but I might need to work up to it.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: katekat on September 08, 2017, 05:01:48 AM
Sometimes I realise I've been using my cup so long that I've forgotten just how much it changed my life. When I really think back I can remember just how awful I found tampons and pads but mostly the cup just feels so normal to me and basically makes me forget my period. I know that for some people there's a 'learning curve' but honestly for me it was love at first try!

Anyway, I'm wondering when I should consider replacing my cup 'just because', e.g., for normal wear-and-tear without there being any current issues. Obviously the 'one year' recommendation that some places give is pure cover-your-ass, I have also seen people say '10 years' and I wonder if I need to take that recommendation any more seriously?

My cup seems like it will be fine indefinitely, still fits great, feels the same, never leaks. It is very very discoloured and has been for years, which doesn't bother me. It's about 11 years old now (maybe 12?). The only think that really drives me to get another is the potential to have it actually somehow die on me and have to use tampons or pads for a cycle whilst ordering another, which I would find really awful. Maybe I really should buy another in advance because of how horrible I would find it.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: Moonwaves on September 08, 2017, 05:43:25 AM
Sometimes I realise I've been using my cup so long that I've forgotten just how much it changed my life. When I really think back I can remember just how awful I found tampons and pads but mostly the cup just feels so normal to me and basically makes me forget my period. I know that for some people there's a 'learning curve' but honestly for me it was love at first try!

Anyway, I'm wondering when I should consider replacing my cup 'just because', e.g., for normal wear-and-tear without there being any current issues. Obviously the 'one year' recommendation that some places give is pure cover-your-ass, I have also seen people say '10 years' and I wonder if I need to take that recommendation any more seriously?

My cup seems like it will be fine indefinitely, still fits great, feels the same, never leaks. It is very very discoloured and has been for years, which doesn't bother me. It's about 11 years old now (maybe 12?). The only think that really drives me to get another is the potential to have it actually somehow die on me and have to use tampons or pads for a cycle whilst ordering another, which I would find really awful. Maybe I really should buy another in advance because of how horrible I would find it.
I've been thinking the same recently. Got mine about eleven years ago and have been using it properly for just over nine (steep lerning curve for me so I kept going back to my cloth pads). Although I've had a few four or five month breaks over the last year or so (hormonal issues meant no periods for while) so it has had a bit of rest in between.  I'm pretty sure that when I got my Mooncup it was still a lifetime guarantee and it was only a year or two after that, that they switched to a 10-year one.

It's true though that having a back-up on hand might not be a bad idea. Hmm. Even with menopause fast approaching, I think it might be worth the investment. Still a pittance compared to what I would have spent on sanitary towels in the time I've had one, too.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: With This Herring on September 08, 2017, 05:24:35 PM
I bought my cup sometime before 2008, far enough back that I wasn't keeping much in the way of expense records, so it has probably been at least 10 years.  It is still going strong!  If it were to die on me, it probably would be gradually with cracks developing, but I see nothing more than staining (which can be fixed with a H2O2 soak if you really care).

No vaginal deliveries. It got easier to remove but the cup still felt really really wide when removing. I will give it another couple cycles but I wonder if maybe I should think about a smaller cup. I was interested in a larger volume cup but I might need to work up to it.

Does it feel too wide when you are wearing it?  Mine always feels bigger at removal, but I think it helps that, while bearing down, I use a few fingers to dent in one side to make a very fat C/U shape before removing it.  That make the rim smaller and makes it easier to pull out.  I don't take it out by just breaking the seal then pulling the base.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: Bracken_Joy on September 10, 2017, 08:44:55 AM
Does it feel too wide when you are wearing it?  Mine always feels bigger at removal, but I think it helps that, while bearing down, I use a few fingers to dent in one side to make a very fat C/U shape before removing it.  That make the rim smaller and makes it easier to pull out.  I don't take it out by just breaking the seal then pulling the base.

Yep, be sure to pinch it down so it breaks the seal. Otherwise you're functionally trying to yank out a suction cup =o Of course that will feel bad! Pinch in one side. You may lose a little blood as it comes out, but it comes out way more easily that way, and it's going to be a bit of a mess coming out anyway =)

Good luck. If it's too big, it's too big though.

Re: durability. I don't know about how long to keep them. I'm probably at like 8 years with mine. It was getting very discolored, and someone on here recommended the half hydrogen peroxide/half water soak. It looks like new again. I do that overnight at the end of each cycle now.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: rockstache on September 11, 2017, 09:00:39 AM
This morning (~5am) I was removing mine, got it removed successfully, and then dropped it. I do not recommend this method. It bounces.

I can laugh about it now, but I was groggy and miserable at the time. Cleanup was not fun.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: Bracken_Joy on September 11, 2017, 02:12:27 PM
This morning (~5am) I was removing mine, got it removed successfully, and then dropped it. I do not recommend this method. It bounces.

I can laugh about it now, but I was groggy and miserable at the time. Cleanup was not fun.

Oh my god that's awful. But I am laughing. Laughing hard enough it's annoying the dog resting her head on my arm. Thank you for letting us all share in your amusing but terrible misery on that!
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: With This Herring on September 11, 2017, 07:25:20 PM
This morning (~5am) I was removing mine, got it removed successfully, and then dropped it. I do not recommend this method. It bounces.

I can laugh about it now, but I was groggy and miserable at the time. Cleanup was not fun.

Oh my gosh!  You poor thing!  I, too, am laughing.  This really complicates that delightful during and post period game of "find the blood" (how does it get on the underside of the toilet seat? It is a mystery).
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: NeonPegasus on September 11, 2017, 07:36:01 PM
I've always used pads and tampons but I'm considering buying the cup. However, I still haven't figured out how you manage it in a public restroom...

You just, well, manage. I had horrendous periods before getting the IUD. I soaked a super plus tampon in minutes. A cup would get me only 30-45 minutes on my heavy day. I had to change it at work nearly every hour. It was a f-ing mess every time, mainly because it was always brimful. But it was my only option and I had to deal with it. So, I would just bear down to get it out gently, dump it and reinsert it immediately. I mopped up my hands in the stall, opened the door with the side of my hand and washed thoroughly at the sink. I don't think anyone noticed my dirty hands in the seconds between exiting the stall and heading to the sink. That said, do keep a tampon or two in your purse in case you drop the cup in the toilet.

If your periods are normal, you'll likely be able to make it through the day without changing it.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: PMG on September 12, 2017, 09:41:52 AM
I get along ok with my cup.  Just finished a period where I only used the cup.  I often use a pad along with it for safety on my first day, and when I just can't deal with the cup.  I swear my periods are shorter and less heavy, not sure if it's because of using the cup and organic or fabric pads of if it's due to age, weight loss, general improvement in diet, activity and health.  Either way, I am happy.

New challenge:  For the next 8 weeks I'm staying in an apartment with no way to boil the cup.  I have a microwave and and a pressure cooker.  Can I boil water in the pressure cooker??  I may have to settle for the peroxide soak with a thorough rinse.  I don't want to risk my health but I don't want to buy a burner just for this and I don't feel comfortable inviting myself over to a friends house just to boil my cup. 

Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: aetherie on September 12, 2017, 09:47:14 AM
New challenge:  For the next 8 weeks I'm staying in an apartment with no way to boil the cup.  I have a microwave and and a pressure cooker.  Can I boil water in the pressure cooker??  I may have to settle for the peroxide soak with a thorough rinse.  I don't want to risk my health but I don't want to buy a burner just for this and I don't feel comfortable inviting myself over to a friends house just to boil my cup.

FWIW, I only do the full boil/peroxide/whatever cleaning routine every ~6 months. Usually I just give it a thorough wash in the sink with soap and water. I've had no health issues.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: With This Herring on September 12, 2017, 12:24:15 PM
New challenge:  For the next 8 weeks I'm staying in an apartment with no way to boil the cup.  I have a microwave and and a pressure cooker.  Can I boil water in the pressure cooker??  I may have to settle for the peroxide soak with a thorough rinse.  I don't want to risk my health but I don't want to buy a burner just for this and I don't feel comfortable inviting myself over to a friends house just to boil my cup.

FWIW, I only do the full boil/peroxide/whatever cleaning routine every ~6 months. Usually I just give it a thorough wash in the sink with soap and water. I've had no health issues.

Like aetherie, I only peroxide mine once in a while.  I have never boiled it.  Soap + warm water is plenty unless you drop it in something terrible like a porta-potty.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: Bracken_Joy on September 12, 2017, 12:30:47 PM
+1 to the above. I do soap and tap-hot water, then just a 1/2 peroxide 1/2 water soak after the whole period is done.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: Erma on September 12, 2017, 12:33:56 PM

New challenge:  For the next 8 weeks I'm staying in an apartment with no way to boil the cup.  I have a microwave and and a pressure cooker.  Can I boil water in the pressure cooker??  I may have to settle for the peroxide soak with a thorough rinse.  I don't want to risk my health but I don't want to buy a burner just for this and I don't feel comfortable inviting myself over to a friends house just to boil my cup.

You can also use the tabs used to clean dentures as an alternative.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: HappierAtHome on September 12, 2017, 11:58:43 PM
The internet tells me you can also microwave it in a container of water for five minutes instead of doing the stovetop boil.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: katekat on September 13, 2017, 01:22:14 AM
I've never boiled or otherwise sterilised my cup. I got it when I was a teenager and I would have been too embarrassed to use the stove for that and wouldn't have known how to otherwise sterilise. In the early years I was quite worried about the hygiene of the situation and after each cycle I would fill a mug with boiled water from the kettle and stick the cup in there for a while (no idea if this really does anything re:sterilisation since it's not still on the boil).

I got laxer and laxer over time really and now I just rinse during my period and wash with soap and water after. My cup is incredibly discoloured but otherwise all is fine. This isn't a recommendation, just a datapoint, YMMV, etc, etc.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: brookebcollin on September 13, 2017, 01:37:46 AM
yeah, my boyfriend was way less grossed out by it than I thought he would be. he actually thinks it's pretty hilarious and interesting, and makes jokes about it being a vampire shot glass (which even grosses ME out, LOL)
Ugh THAT is gross (though it totally makes sense!) I've been on tampons for years and I'd love to find an alternative because I figured inserting something full of toxic chemicals into your body is probably not a good idea, but I'm reluctant to give the period cup a try - I stay in the office all day and I don't know how to change in the public bathroom!
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: HappierAtHome on September 13, 2017, 01:44:53 AM
Brookebcollin, you may not need to change it during the day... Mine is fine from when I leave the house in the morning until when I get home at night, no emptying needed in that long block of time.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: Anatidae V on September 13, 2017, 05:06:03 AM
You can also buy sterilisation tablets. Stick in cold water, let dissolve, swirl the cup in it. I use them for my baby's bottles and teething ring, I assume they'd be fine for a menstrual cup.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: rockstache on September 13, 2017, 08:16:42 AM
Brookebcollin, you may not need to change it during the day... Mine is fine from when I leave the house in the morning until when I get home at night, no emptying needed in that long block of time.

+1, I don't have to do anything with it during the day either, even on my heavy days. Having been discussing this on this forum for a while though, I know that is not the case for everyone.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: PMG on September 13, 2017, 03:29:40 PM
Thanks all. I think I'll just do a good wash and peroxide soak until I have access to boiling it again! I will continue boiling regularly as that is what is recommended for mine, but it is reassuring to hear others stories.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: MarshallHernandez on September 26, 2017, 07:25:45 AM
I've recently bought a Diva Cup been researching cups for weeks and... in the autoclave kind of a giant steam pressure cooker to sterilize.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: elaine amj on October 02, 2017, 10:30:14 PM
I've been on tampons for years and I'd love to find an alternative because I figured inserting something full of toxic chemicals into your body is probably not a good idea, but I'm reluctant to give the period cup a try - I stay in the office all day and I don't know how to change in the public bathroom!

I was completely grossed out by the thought of menstrual cups for years. But the more I read, especially here on MMM, the more I became open to giving it a try. I finally bought a diva cup last year and have to say, I really like it. I do sometimes empty at work and have figured out how to deal with it in public restrooms (use only one hand, empty and reinsert, wipe hand well with tissue paper and don't touch anything before washing thoroughly ASAP). My preference is to empty it in the shower each night though - feels so much cleaner that way.

I didn't realize until I read it here that people rinse before reinserting though. Been using it for quite some months now and most of the time I just empty and reinsert right away. Having to rinse in between would certainly make it more challenging in a public restroom.

Haven't figured out the optimal (yet discreet!) way to sterilize and dry it yet so will continue reading for ideas.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: NeonPegasus on October 04, 2017, 08:12:12 AM
I didn't realize until I read it here that people rinse before reinserting though. Been using it for quite some months now and most of the time I just empty and reinsert right away. Having to rinse in between would certainly make it more challenging in a public restroom.

Haven't figured out the optimal (yet discreet!) way to sterilize and dry it yet so will continue reading for ideas.

I never, NEVER rinsed in a public bathroom before reinserting. I see absolutely zero benefit in doing so. It's not like you're sterilizing it. Not to mention, as bad as my periods used to be, I didn't have the option to get off a toilet without a cup in place.

I sterilize it by boiling it in a cooking pot on the stove. IDGAF about discretion at my house. My girls don't notice it and my husband is a grown man who doesn't need to be spared my reality. I mean, I don't sterilize when guests are over but my husband will survive the knowledge that his wife has periods, KWIM?
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: rockstache on October 04, 2017, 08:19:54 AM
Quote from: NeonPegasus link=topic=18292.msg1720067#msg1720067
I sterilize it by boiling it in a cooking pot on the stove. IDGAF about discretion at my house. My girls don't notice it and my husband is a grown man who doesn't need to be spared my reality. I mean, I don't sterilize when guests are over but my husband will survive the knowledge that his wife has periods, KWIM?

Haha, yup. This is what I do too.


ETA: Fixed quote tags
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: marcela on October 04, 2017, 08:45:02 AM
[quote author=NeonPegasus link=topic=18292.msg1720067#msg1720067
I sterilize it by boiling it in a cooking pot on the stove. IDGAF about discretion at my house. My girls don't notice it and my husband is a grown man who doesn't need to be spared my reality. I mean, I don't sterilize when guests are over but my husband will survive the knowledge that his wife has periods, KWIM?

Haha, yup. This is what I do too.
[/quote]

Same. My husband is a grown ass man and if he can't handle seeing a clean silicone doohickey bobbing around in a pot of boiling water, that's on him not me.
I sterilize once a month before my period starts because I figure that when it would have had the most time to get grody just waiting around in its container for aunt flo to come knocking.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: elaine amj on October 04, 2017, 10:07:17 AM
Haha.,..DH doesn't care too much. It's to spare MY tender sensibilities!
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: La Bibliotecaria Feroz on October 04, 2017, 11:35:14 AM
I accidentally left my tiny drawstring bag in the Boy's bathroom and had to ask him to bring it back. He was like, what on earth is the function of this tiny bag?
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: rockstache on October 04, 2017, 11:48:32 AM
I accidentally left my tiny drawstring bag in the Boy's bathroom and had to ask him to bring it back. He was like, what on earth is the function of this tiny bag?

So??? Did you tell him?  :D
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: fuzzy math on October 04, 2017, 01:19:32 PM
I look for the single room bathrooms at work. Generally i can reach from the toilet to the sink to rinse...

If that's not an option, I wash my hands before entering the stall and soak the paper towels... Remove cup, reinsert and then wipe any mess off my hands with the wet paper towels. I put that in the little sanitary trash can in each stall so I don't have to walk out with bloody paper towels.

Sex toy cleaner works too as a cleaner. Or just plain soap and water! Boiling is going to lessen the lifespan. Vaginas are not sterile environments and do not require products to be sterile...
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: La Bibliotecaria Feroz on October 04, 2017, 04:07:16 PM
I accidentally left my tiny drawstring bag in the Boy's bathroom and had to ask him to bring it back. He was like, what on earth is the function of this tiny bag?

So??? Did you tell him?  :D

Yes. Yes I did. I said it was for my menstrual cup and he refrained from inquiring further.
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: rockstache on October 04, 2017, 04:45:01 PM
Haha! Good job FP!
Title: Re: Menstrual Cups
Post by: With This Herring on October 06, 2017, 11:30:12 AM
I accidentally left my tiny drawstring bag in the Boy's bathroom and had to ask him to bring it back. He was like, what on earth is the function of this tiny bag?

So??? Did you tell him?  :D

Yes. Yes I did. I said it was for my menstrual cup and he refrained from inquiring further.

"It's where I keep my marbles."
"Marbles?"
"Otherwise I'll lose them."