Have you been wanting to try menstrual cups, but too nervous because you don’t know how to use them? That’s why we are here to help you! Hopefully by the end of this you won’t have any fear and you’ll be ready to try out a new period product.
How to Insert a Menstrual Cup
Remember, you might not get it the first time, and that’s okay. I know I sure didn’t! We suggest trying it at your house and relax. Grab a mug of your favourite tea, zen out and head to your bathroom...even grab a mirror if you need to. It’s not a race, take your time and get to know how the menstrual cup works with your body.
Here is a step-by-step guide on how to insert a cup for the first time:
- Wash your hands and the cup with clean water and a mild soap.
- Fold and hold the cup (as shown in the picture) - Everyone’s anatomy is unique, so try folding it a few different ways, and find one that is comfortable.
- RELAX and insert the folded cup, just like you would with a tampon.
- Push it in at a 45 degree angle.
- The cup should sit as low as it comfortably can in your vagina, usually just a little lower than a tampon, with the stem fully inside.
- When the cup is inside, it will ‘POP’ open and create a light, comfortable suction. This is what prevents any leaks.
- Twist and rotate the cup to make sure it is suctioned and won’t leak.
One of the benefits to using a cup is you can leave it in for up to 12 hours. This is obviously dependent on how heavy your period is, so test it out at home first to see what works for you.
If you are nervous about leaking, you can try a menstrual cup and a pair of period proof underwear, like our ‘Oh-No’ Proof Underwear. Check them out below:
To take it out, all you have to do is:
- Wash your hands.
- Gently pull the stem of the cup downwards, until you can grip the actual cup.
- Wiggle it back and forth and pull it down. Pinch the base of the cup, so it breaks the suction.
- When you’re pulling it out of your vagina, make sure to keep it upright, so there is no spillage.
- Dump the contents in the sink or toilet.
- Rinse the cup with water.
When you’re on your period, you can just rinse it thoroughly after each use. But at the end of your period, you will need to disinfect it. All you have to do is rinse it, and boil it for 3-5 minutes. There are many cup cleaners, you can also purchase too!
Menstrual Cup FAQ
What size should I get?
Each company has a different size guide, but if you are new to the period world, then choose the smaller size. If you are over 30 and have had a baby, than get the larger size.
Can I use a cup with an IUD?
Yes! Talk to your doctor first though to make sure the strings of the IUD are cut short. If you are ever questioning anything, always as your doctor as they will give you the best advice!
How are they different from tampons?
Menstrual cups actually collect the flow, where tampons absorb the blood. A major plus about cups is you don’t have to worry about Toxic Shock Syndrome. If you want to learn more about that, read out blog here.
Can a cup get lost inside me?
No, there is no where for the cup to go. If it seems really far up your vaginal canal, use your muscles to work the cup low enough for you to grab it with your fingers.
Will it get stuck?
No, the cup has nowhere to go but out. If you are trying to remove it, but it seems stuck, stay calm and make sure your muscles are relaxed. It’s only because it’s suctioned really well, so try to find the base of the cup and pinch it to loosen the suction.
What are they made of?
Menstrual cups are made of silicone. They need to be flexible to move with your body and made with high quality healthcare grade silicone.
How much do they hold?
Most hold an ounce of blood, which doesn’t seem like a lot, but that’s more than double what a tampon will hold.
Can you feel them?
As long as you have the right size and have inserted it correctly, you shouldn’t feel it at all. At the beginning, you will most likely have to try it out a few times. I know I sure did!
Can you swim with them?
Yes, of course! It will probably be comfortable than a tampon, actually.
Remember, there is no right or wrong to what you use as period protection. Menstrual cups are definitely better for the environment, but do what is comfortable for YOU.
Disclaimer: The blog writers at Knixteen are not medical professionals, and give this advice based on their own research and experience. If you have further questions or concerns, speak to a trusted medical professional.