Menstrual cups are made of silicone, I thought silicone was bad for my body?
Let’s get one fact straight, when you are thinking silicone you are thinking of silicone toxic leaking on breast implants right? Menstrual cup are made from medical grade silicone, this is a solid stable piece of silicone (with the feel of soft rubber) that cannot leak or release molecules into the body. The same silicone used to make menstrual cup is also widely used in the medical industry for internal valves and tubing as well as baby bottle teats and breast pumps.
Does menstrual cups contain any phthalates or Bisphenol A (BPA) like some silicones and plastics do?
Absolutely not! they are 100% medical silicone grade or in the case of Me Luna TPE (thermoplastic elastomer) which is also free of those chemicals.
I am allergic / sensitive to latex. Can I still use the cup?
Yes, only the brown Keeper cup is made from latex. The other menstrual cups are made of medical grade silicone, and can still be used even by people with latex sensitivities.
Can it be used as a method of birth control, or STD protection?
No it cannot. Furthermore, the menstrual cup is not a contraceptive device and does not protect you against sexually transmitted diseases (STD).
Can I have sex while wearing the cup?
Not penetrative vaginal sex. The cup would get in the way, or be squeezed/crushed, so the seal would be broken. You should always remove your cup before any penetrative vaginal sex. If you want to have sex while having your period without having to buy a new set of bed sheets, some people use baby sea sponges or the Instead soft cup.
Can I receive oral sex then?
Definitely yes, no more damp string sticking out making you feel unsexy. The cup will act as a barrier letting you reassured that there will be no leaking or evidence that you have your period.
Can I use a menstrual cup if I have an IUD?
Many women who use a menstrual cup also have an IUD. Some menstrual cup manufacturers support the combination use of a menstrual cup and an IUD, while others do not. It is important that you read all the information in your product instructions. As with all medical concerns, you should also ask your doctor for additional advice. But if you compare a cup with a tampon, the tampon sits much closer to the cervix than a cup does since it’s almost only half way in the vagina while the tip of the tampon almost touch the cervix. I have personally used cups which I had a IUD without any issue. Same thing goes for Nuvaring.
Can the cup be used along with contraceptives?
You should always remove the cup before having penetrative vaginal sex. But with some products like Nuvaring, the pill, the patch, or an IUD– they should not harm your cup. It is usually not recommended to use things like contraceptive gel or foam with a cup though, because not much is known about the effects of those products on the cup’s material. As always, consult with your doctor before combining these products.
I am pregnant, but sometimes, I still spot or have discharge. Can I use the cup for times like this?
Pregnant women should not use internal vaginal products, for any reason, unless directed to by their doctor. When you are pregnant, your vaginal ph levels are far more sensitive than usual, making you prone to infection, even when you are not doing anything differently. For this reason, unless you are engaging in sexual intercourse, it is recommended that the vagina remain clear of foreign objects as much as possible during this time, again, unless otherwise directed by your doctor.
I just had a baby, and I am bleeding heavily. Can I use a menstrual cup for post-natal bleeding?
The menstrual cup should not be used for post-natal bleeding. Because there are open wounds healing up inside, there is a greater risk of infection with any kind of foreign objects, no matter how clean. Please wait until your doctor says you can use internal menstrual products again, before using a menstrual cup (same goes for tampons).
Is there an increased risk of Urinary Tract Infection (UTI) when using a cup?
Menstrual cups are not associated with an increased risk of UTI. You may need to trim the stem a bit so that it is not protruding near to the urethra. Also, it is important to wash and rinse the cup and the stem thoroughly. It is best to use a mild and perfume-free soap, so that residue is not left on the cup. Residue may cause irritations. As for all gynecological concerns, we suggest you consult your doctor.
Can I use the cup to collect other types of bodily liquid?
Menstrual cups have been approved for the collection of menstrual fluid only, and are not recommend for collecting any other fluids, or for any other use.
I pass large clots during some days of my period. Can I use a cup?
Yes you can, the cup would be emptied more often than every 12 hours. A bit of trial and error may be in order, but one quickly learns how often to empty the cup to meet their specific needs.
I have a tilted cervix / uterus. Can I still use a cup?
Many women with these conditions still successfully use a cup. Since it is worn lower in the vaginal canal it does not interfere with the position of the uterus. But of course, it is always best to consult with your doctor on this, as he/she can give you more details on the shape of your anatomy.
I’m going through menopause, and my cycles are very unpredictable. Can I still use a cup?
Absolutely! Vaginal dryness is normal at this stage of a woman’s life and you may even find that the cup will make it more comfortable since it won’t absorb anything. If you happen not too bleed the cup won’t affect you in any way. PreMeno are ovules that can help you achieve vaginal rehydration.
Where can I purchase a cup?
You can purchase most brands on shop.menstrualcup.co along with more alternative feminine hygiene products (washable pads, natural contraception etc).
Why should I order thru shop.menstrualcup.co instead of the brand directly?
• The payment checkout is very easy and secure using Paypal.
• The price is the same as the brand itself.
• Your order is handled by the brand itself, you get it from the source.
• This site gathers all the biggest cups brands and give you all the information to choose the right one for you.
• You can order from multiple brands in one transaction have the customer service in one place only.
• We offer an affiliaton program allowing you to promote our shop on your site, blog, facebook, you’ll make a commission of the profit when a product is sold thru your link. We want to promote the idea of the cup not promote a brand in particular.
• and last but not the least it would make me happy and allow me to keep on doing what I’m doing :-)
How do I know which size I am?
Each brand have their own recommendation according to your age and if you had childbirth or not. If for example, they recommend the smaller size before 30 and the bigger after 30 and you are 28, you are probably better off using the bigger size. There is only a few millimeters difference between the two models, but it is important to use the recommended sizing to prevent leakage. As we age, our hips naturally widen and the vaginal muscles lose elasticity. Because the vaginal muscles hold the cup in place, it is important to use a bigger size, even if you have not had childbirth. Of course this a general guideline, we are all unique and it’s up to you to try what you think is adequate to your body.
There are several factors to consider: child births, your physiques, in what physical shape you are and your age. Read the guidelines. Have a look at this cup comparison table comparing all brands in terms of sizes, prices.
The cup looks big. Does it hurt to insert or remove it?
If you do it correctly and carefully, it shouldn’t. Virgins may have some discomfort at first, but unless there is a medical condition, the discomfort should go away. The vagina is a flexible muscle; it can expand during sexual activity, or to fit a baby’s head. Then it shrinks back down again. An average woman or girl’s body should be able to accommodate a cup just fine, with some practice.
Can the cup get lost inside of me?
No. You are sort of like a pocket up inside, with walls all around and a closed-off end. There is nowhere for a cup, or anything else to go. You can reach the cup only half a finger away. The menstrual cup is designed to catch your menstrual flow rather than absorb it. Its bell shape allows the cup to fit snuggly and comfortably up against your vaginal walls, below but not touching your cervix. The rim is designed to help create a suction that keeps the cup in place and collects your menstrual flow inside of it. The small holes around the rim are to help release the suction when you remove the cup.
How does the cup stay in place?
The cup is held firmly in place by the muscular walls and closed-end of the vagina. It also stays in via a light suction that is formed up inside. Those little holes around the rim of your cup are there to help break the seal.
Will using the cup affect the tightness of my vagina and/or stretch it out at all?
Physically, the cup is suitable for women of all ages as the vagina is made up of very flexible tissue and muscles. Women’s bodies are designed this way to be able to deliver a baby. After being expanded, after intercourse or childbirth, the tissue returns back to its normal size. Pilates and Yoga is great for training this specific area.
Can a virgin use a menstrual cup?
Physically, there is no reason why a virgin cannot use a cup. However, some cultures or religions have certain beliefs about internal menstrual products, or they hymen (a menstrual cup can alter the hymen). So this will need to be taken into consideration. But if this is not an issue for you, your family and/or your culture– then yes, a virgin can use a cup.
Before first use, what should I do?
Check that the air holes at the top of your cup are open. Wash your hands and clean the cup by washing with water and a mild soap. Then boil it in a large amount of water for a few minutes before first use. Make sure that there is enough water so that the cup does not burn on the bottom.
How to sterilise your cup?
• Boil your cup in water
You can boil the cup for sterilisation in a pan, I would recommend one you only use for non greasy food or make sure you wash it very well. Boil it for a few minutes (I’d advise you stay near the stove to avoid burning your cup). Always use the safe and brand-recommended cleaning/sterilising methods.
A tip from lunette: if you put your cup inside a cooking whisk when you boil your cup, you can be sure that your cup won’t burn since it will be protected from the direct contact with the pan.
Me Luna sells a great cleaning Kit to sterilise your cup in the microwave. It allows you to have a small recipient just for your cup that will take no space when not in use. It’s specially useful while traveling or have roomates. Even if you don’t find a microwave, you can use the recipient to clean it with a sterilising tablet.
• Vinegar/water solution
Some cup companies recommends rinsing their cup briefly (3 minutes maximum) in a “10% white vinegar, 90% water” solution, rather than boiling it. That way you are sure to not damage your cup and it’s a bit easier than pulling out pots. White vinegar is very cheap and a non polluting product. It’s great to have in the house for cleaning purposes. Ex: cleaning your kettle, your windows and much more.
• Milton sterilising tablets
You can also use sterilising tablets like Milton. It takes just 15 minutes to sterilise your cup (or anything else, baby bottles, teats etc…) Milton solution can be kept for 24 hours so you can continue to put items in, and take them out when you are ready to use them throughout the day. It is fast and very efficient. Also the most convenient thing to bring if you are traveling and are not able to boil water.
Can I cut the stem?
The stem of the cup can always be trimmed to your convenience. The stem is only there to help you pinch the bottom of the cup to break the seal at the removal. You shouldn’t pull the stem directly as this won’t break the seal and it would just feel uncomfortable. When your cup is placed properly, its bottom should be no further than about half a finger away from the entry of your vagina. The stem should be entirely inside or it could cause irritations to your labias. If you feel that the stem is too long, you can cut it partially or entirely, Be cautious while cutting it, not to pierce the actual bottom of your cup…you can use nail clippers or a regular pair of scissors.
If your cup doesn’t have a flat tab or a hollow tube as a stem I wouldn’t advise you to cut anything. For example if it has a stem like a little ball like Naturcup or Me Luna. They are very short and won’t change much to remove it, it will just help you to grab the bottom. If you feel like you don’t need any stem at all, I recommend the Me Luna Basic stem
I have long nails. Can I still use a cup?
You can, but you may need to be more careful than other women, during insertion and removal. The material is thick enough to where your nails will not damage it, but long nails may hurt the delicate skin in that area, if special care is not taken.
Must the menstrual cup be sterilised ?
Most menstrual companies recommend it, at least once a month. You should of course wash the cup daily with mild, perfume-free soap (a feminine wash, mild natural soap, or cup manufacturer wash works very well), and warm water. Try to do so each time you empty it. As for sterilizing, each brand has a different recommended method. For most, once a month (preferably on the first day of your period before you use the cup). Check products available recommended by menstrual cup brands.
How do I store my menstrual cup when I don’t use it?
Never store your cup in a plastic bag, or an air-tight container, as this can cause mold. A cup must have air flow when being stored away for the rest of the month. The best thing to store a menstrual cup in, is clean, dry cloth pouch (which are provided), and away from extreme heat, cold, or sunlight. After your period is over and you have cleaned your cup, store it in the cloth pouch.
Is there anything that can damage my cup?
Remember to never use silicone based product as they can damage the cup. If you want to use lubricant use the water based ones; no silicone or oil base (except the Me Luna made out of TPE). Just clean it as recommended and keep it away from extreme temperature and in its provided pouch when not in use away from your pets and children :) You will then ensure a maxium lifespan that can last up to 10 years.
Can I use any type of soap to wash my cup?
Wash the menstrual cup carefully in warm water and soap to clean it sufficiently before reinsertion. Use mild soap for washing (intimate soap is fine). The cup should first be rinsed in cold water, so that menstrual blood does not stain the cup or make it develop an odor. When water is not available or it is not convenient to boil the cup, it is okay to wipe the cup with toilet paper and/or a disinfecting wipe. You can give it a wash the next time. Do check the little holes near the rim of the cup are clean. The size of the holes varies depending on the brand. If they are small and a simple rinse is not enough, you can use a thin interdental brush. keep one just for that purpose.
Can I wash my cup in my washing maching or dishwasher?
No, even though it sounds obvious, I add it to the list of questions because I have read several times on some comments or blogs women doing it or talking about it. Your cup would be fine and handle the heat, but the product used are very harsh and could damage your cup or leave residues that could be harmful to your body. Just hand wash it with a neutral soap
How often do I have to empty/wash the cup?
It depends on your flow, and the size of cup you get– all women are different. If you have an average to heavy flow, the cup can usually sit well for 4 – 10 hours. Some women with a very light flow (or on a light day) can go as long as 12 hours. Never go longer than 8 to 12 hours (depending on the manufacturer) without emptying and washing your cup.
Will my cup get full and leak?
A tampons can hold from 6ml for the light flow one to 18ml for the super +. You keep them for hours without a problem. The smallest cup can hold from around 15ml up to 42ml for the biggest one (Me Luna XL). So even the smallest cups are the equivalent of a super + tampon. There is no absorption happening, it is all collected in liquid form, it will be a lot less than what you imagine. So even if you keep your cup all day long, it is very unlikely that it will get full (unless you chose one that is too small for you of course). See the comparison table Tampons Vs Menstrual cups
How do I empty and clean my cup in a public restroom?
Remove and empty it the same way you would at home, but you can bring some bottled water, or a wet paper towel in the stall with you for rinsing/wiping the cup. Then simply reinsert it. You can give the cup a regular wash after you get home. It is often a concern for women, but since you have to change it most likely twice a day. you do it once in the morning at home and throughout the day it is not uncommon to find a toilet with a sink inside. I personally have a routine to do it while I am in the shower. You will find your own convenient time.
I need to use a lubricant to make inserting a cup easier. Which kind should I use?
You should use a water-based vaginal lube. The bottle should tell you wether or not its water-based. Usually, if it is “safe to use with a condom”, that is a good indicator. Never use oil-based lubes, as oil is not very biocompatible with the sensitive tissue environment of the vagina. Do not use silicone-based lubes. These can bind with the material of the cup, and ruin its quality.
What if there is no clean, potable water available to clean my cup with?
You can clean it as you would in a public restroom, just wipe it out with toilet paper, and wait until you have access to drinking water for a proper cleaning. desinfectant wipes can also work but wait until the cup dries to avoid any irritation. otherwise just empty it, put it back with clean hands and you can clean it properly when you get home.
Can I return or exchange my cup?
Due to the personal nature of this product, most cup companies can’t legally accept menstrual cup returns or grant exchanges, as this would be unsanitary. Unless it is still intact in its original package. Please be certain that you have selected the appropriate size, brand, and desired color (if any) before finalizing your purchase. Though quite a few brand do offer a few month guarantee (Ladycup, MiaCup, NaturCup), you try it, if after X months you are not satisfied with the product you can send it back, get a refund, and the cup will be destroyed. Check each brand warranty conditions.