My Mooncup Runneth Over
THAT’S RIGHT KIDS. MOONCUPS.
So straight up: in this post I’m going to be talking about periods and bleeding and reusable menstrual cups and well, if that’s just really not your vibe then feel free to leave now. BYE!
For those of you who stayed WELCOME. hahahahaha those losers who left don’t know what they’re MISSING!
So, I wanted to write a post about Mooncups for two reasons:
- I am a recent convert and I LOVE IT AND I NEED TO TELL THE WORLD ABOUT IT SO YOU CAN JOIN ME IN MY MENSTRUAL CUP LOVE.
- Every time I tell one of my chums that I use one, they say they’ve been considering taking the plunge too but have some doubts/queries/quibbles about it all.
Therefore, I thought it might be helpful for those who have Mooncup Curiosity for me to answer some questions and tell you what using one of these badboys is like.
What is it?
Straight up, a nice easy one. It’s a silicone cup that you insert into your vagina and wear during your period, and it neatly and effectively holds all your lovely period blood. They look like this:
That sounds a bit weird!?
No weirder than shoving dry wads of cotton wool and string up your chuff if you ask me. Also, they have LOADS of benefits. Because they’re reusable, you save a tonne of money (side note- Dear World, Periods are not a luxury, please abolish tampon tax everywhere. k thanks bye, love All Women) that you would usually spend on tampons and towels.
Yup. You just rinse your blood out of it in the sink, and pop it straight back in. EASY PEASY. Plus, because you’re not throwing away used tampons and towels all the time, it’s much more environmentally sound. So I can happily frolic around in meadows shouting MY VAGINA IS GOOD FOR NATURE!
Hmm okay- but is it safe?
Babe, it’s so safe. The cup itself is latex-free, hypoallergenic and it has no dyes, perfumes, BPA, phthalates, plastic, bleaches or toxins. It’s basically made from angel wings. There’s a lot of non-conducive research about whether the chemicals that go into making tampons and towels are harmful in the long run, but between you and me, I’m kind of not so keen on having a cocktail of chemicals rubbing shoulders with my cervix. Also it doesn’t dry you out the way tampons do, nor does it come with the potential (if rare) threat of TSS (Toxic Shock Syndrome).
Is it clean though?
Clean as a bead pal. The cup sits inside you and holds the blood away from your vaginal walls. No bacteria forms like it can in tampons or on towels and bonus, no smells either.
Right okay, so I’m considering giving it a go- where do I get one from?
I got mine from Amazon (£15.99) but I also think they’ve started selling them in Boots too (I just checked online and they were £21.99). There are also lots of other different brands (Divacup, Organicup, Lunette etc) some cheaper, some more expensive, I think it’s much of a muchness- I just went with Mooncup as it’s the brand name I knew.
Oh god, there’s different sizes- which one do I get?! I HAVE A WIDE-SET VAGINA AND A HEAVY FLOW.
Chill- it’s fine. Fannys come in all sorts of beautiful shapes and sizes so there needs to be a couple of options. They recommend Size A if you are 30 + or have ever given birth vaginally at any age, or Size B if you’re under 30 and have never given birth vaginally. I bought Size B as I was under 30 at the time and am yet to push a child out. I’m now 30 and still using Size B and can confirm that upon entering my 3rd decade, my vagina did not change overnight. So use your common sense- if you’re more of a wide open road in the vadge department, get a Size A and if you’re more akin to a narrow alleyway, get a B.
Okay I have it. How the fuck do I get it in?!
Don’t be alarmed at the size of it. At first I was like WOAH BRO YOU ARE NOT GONNA FIT IN THERE. But bear in mind that your vagina is magic and stretchy and also that the cup is very soft and bendy and you fold it to put in in. There’s a variety of folding techniques you can try (which are included in the handy booklet in the cup’s box) but I find the C fold the easiest. You fold the cup in half (so the top looks like a ‘C’) and then just push it in. A deep squat is easiest for this (and also the sexiest of all the insertion poses) and if you’re struggling, a dab of lube will help to just slide that sucker in. Once it’s inside it will unfold to its full shape (it does feel a bit weird if it pops open suddenly. QUITE the sensation to get in the middle of a finance meeting at work I tell ya.)
Right, it’s in. What is that little stem bit for?
The cups come with a little stem on the bottom which helps to get it out when you need to. It’s a bit long, so just trim it down (not whilst you’re wearing it though, you’ll chop your bloody labia off mate). The idea is that once it’s in, you can’t feel it. If you can, trim a little bit more.
So is it comfortable?
Muchos comfortable. Just like a tampon, if it’s inserted properly, you honestly can’t feel it. If you can, just get your fingers up there and wiggle it around a bit to the right position.
How long can I keep it in for?
Omg ages. You can wear for up to 8 hours- just like a tampon. But if you go slightly over that when you’re sleeping or whatever, I’m pretty sure that’s fine too. Just like be normal and take it out to clean at regular intervals.
How much blood does it hold?
LOADS. Seriously. Up to THREE TIMES AS MUCH AS A TAMPON! So if your periods are like the Red Wedding episode of Game of Thrones (and if they are, girl, I feel you) you can rest easy knowing that all that delicious womb lining is being safely harvested in your cup.
And it doesn’t leak?
Nope. I err on the heavy side of the period game (especially day two, what the fuck happens on day 2 guys? I sneeze and it’s like I’m in Carrie) and I haven’t leaked yet. If you’re nerve about that, maybe just pop a pantyliner (such a gross word) in for peace of mind at the start to see how you go.
What if it gets lost inside me and I can’t get it out?
It’s your vagina not the Bermuda Triangle. It will definitely come out. If you can’t grip it or ease it out by pushing with your muscles, then just leave it and try again in a bit when you’re more relaxed. But it won’t get lost I promise you.
Right, so how DO I get it out?
The easiest way I find is to sit on the loo and push down with your muscles like you’re having a big poo. This moves the cup right to the lowest point in your vagina, then feel for the stem. Once you have located the cup’s bottom, gently squeeze using your forefinger and thumb- this releases the suction inside, and then you’ll be able to gently pull it out. You have to not be squeamish and be willing to ‘dig around’ a bit occasionally- short nails are better for this just FYI.
Does it hurt?
Nah, if anything it’s a bit uncomfortable but it deffo doesn’t hurt.
I’m worried it will just explode out of me and there will be blood up the bathroom wall.
Again, it’s your vagina, not a Tarantino movie. This won’t happen I promise. If it does, deffo Instagram it.
SUCCESS! It’s out! Now what?
Rinse it out the sink, and pop back in. Easy. And at the end of each period, pop it in a bowl of boiling water for five mins for a deep clean.
But what if I’m in cubicled toilets?
Yeah I mean, I can see why you wouldn’t want to carry a cup of your period blood out to the sinks in front of your colleages- you can always just take a little bottle of water in with you, or just wipe it out with some loo roll until you can happily wash it in private.
Is it a bit gross?
Maybe to some, but honestly? I find it FASCINATING. Without sounding too wanky, seeing up close exactly how much blood I lose, what it looks like, the consistency etc has made me feel more ‘bonded’ with my vagina and reproductive system. Every time I take it out, I’m like ‘WOAH LOOK AT WHAT MY BODY MADE!!!’
So there you have it. A little guide to Mooncups. I honestly love it, it’s easy, ethical, comfortable, cheap and reliable. Anything that makes this horrible time in the month more bearable is A OKAY with me. Also heads up, this isn’t a sponsored post or an ad, I just genuinely have been wooed by my Mooncup and wanted to share my experience for anyone else thinking of trying one. I URGE YOU TO DO IT. You and your minge will never look back!
Would love to hear your experiences of Magnificent Menstrual Cups, so please do comment below or hit me up on twitter (@katie_brennan).
HAPPY BLEEDING PALS!
More info, FAQs and a brilliant Poldark inspired ad campaign can be found on the Mooncup Website