Menstrual cup road test

As a passionate lover of the environment, I have always supported the idea of using menstrual cups. As an everyday woman, I have always been dubious about trying them due to their leakage potential and their requirement to place an unfamiliar object in my body for long periods at a time (pun completely unintended but I will take the credit).

Last week I bit the bullet and decided to try one. My first impressions were that the cup itself was much less threatening than I had anticipated. In fact, I started to wonder why using these isn’t the norm for women everywhere. It is such a simple concept with so many benefits for each of us individually, and the planet.

The highlight from the experience was feeling like a cool eco warrior, leading the way for my friends who were too uneasy about the whole concept to try it. It was almost like that feeling of getting your period for the first time, before your friends, and them telling them all about it because you were the expert. The lowlight was the murder scene I created in the bathroom when I really struggled to get the cup out one night.

The model I tried had its pros and cons. I imagine different versions would suit people differently given the different shapes and sizes of our bits. So the below list is only true for me and the model I tried.

Untitled design

Here’s what I liked about the cup:

  • It’s much better for the environment than pads and tampons which are single use and have a whole lotta packaging.
  • It’s cost effective. Mine was $50 which equates to about a five month payback period. (I’ve never realised how much I use the term ‘period’ until writing this article.)
  • It doesn’t have to be changed as regularly as the aforementioned options.
  • It’s comfortable. For real.
  • There are no strings to hide when I go to the beach.
  • It came with a pretty little purple bag to store it in. Having the bag makes me feel like such an elegant lady with private lady issues. Sort of how I perceived women in the 60s felt with their special diaphragm and contraceptive pill cases.

Here’s what I didn’t like:

  • It’s not quite as easy to remove as tampons. There could be an art to it but I was still struggling a bit by the end of my period. (There was a brief moment of panic where I pictured myself having to go to the doctor to get it removed.)
  • If you don’t get the suction right, or if you insert them too high, they will leak. However, you get to know how to get good suction within the first few times of using it.
  • I don’t know how easy it would be to empty them out and reinsert in a public toilet, at a party or at work. Every time you need to empty it, you need to rinse it out. I can’t imagine just casually washing out your blood filled cup in the bathroom sink while making small talk to those waiting to use the toilet. The only way I could think to get around this is to take a water bottle into the cubicle with you. You could be lucky enough to find toilets that have hand basins in the cubicle too.

So, will I keep using the menstrual cup? Yep! I still need to work on my removal technique but I will get there. I just know I will!

If you are thinking of trying one, I would recommend interchanging it with your current menstrual management method until you get used to it. That way, if you don’t like it, you can simply carry on doing what you are doing.

Have you tried a menstrual cup? What did you think of it?

Written By

Mahdi is an advocate for nature, animals and people. She has poor fashion sense but a good sense of humour. She hopes that one day there will be ample female toilets in all venues. She is the author of ‘The Power of You: How to Positively Influence People, Places and the World’ and founder of Mahdi Earth and The Earth Healers’ Hub.

10 Comments

  • Love mine! So much more comfortable at night than any other option I’ve tried. No leaking, lying rigid on one side or tossing and turning. I don’t even know it’s there. There are occasional leaks but no worse or more frequent than anything else. Public toilets require some practice. 2 tips: put paper in the bowl first to avoid stains you can’t clean and you can use bottled water or just wipe it with paper as a once off.

  • I’ve been using the moon cup for 9 years and would never go back- the thought of pads and tampons repulses me now!! There are definitely a few things to get used to but it is super convenient. And even with a heavy period I only empty 2x day so can do it at home in the sink. Alternatively you can definitely get away with a tissue wipe instead of rinse if no sink in the toilet.

    • I agree with you about tampons and pads seeming like a crazy idea as time goes on. I used to use them with no forethought about how much waste I was creating. Now I can see. Good on you for starting 9 years ago too! You must have been right out the front of the movement. I hope it becomes the norm for everyone. X

  • After twelve months of using one I’ve only had one accident and that was early in the piece. So handy and convienient! I recommend the Lily Cup Compact and doing any emptying, cleaning etc in the shower morning and night…. perhaps ensuring that no partners are around to see you tip everything out.

  • Great post! Ive been using the juju cup for 12 months now and will never go back. Like you said… tampons just make no sense anymore. You can go 12 hours so a Shower morning and night is the ideal way to empty and replace. And a couple of months in you get really good at it. Xx

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