What’s a Menstrual Cup or Diva Cup?

menstrual_cup_edited By Dr. Sherry Ross A Diva Cup sounds a whole lot sexier than a menstrual cup. But truth be told, the Diva Cup is a brand of menstrual cups. If you haven’t heard of a menstrual cup, you are not alone. The menstrual cup is designed to be placed inside the vagina to collect blood from period or menstrual bleeding. Sounds a bit more intimate than some women want to be with their periods! There are many different brands of the menstrual cups now available on the market. The “award-winning” Diva Cup is one of the most popular brands, being offered in two different sizes for that perfect vaginal fit. Other brand names include the Lunette Menstrual Cup, Anigan Evacup, Th-Keeper, Mooncup, Ruby Cup, Ladycup, Femmecup to name a few. They all have similar qualities including being made of a vagina-safe material such as plastic, silicone-based, and latex, which are hypoallergenic and biocompatible (the basic translation is they all meet the medical female standards to be used safely). Some have to be replaced every couple years while others are disposable. They all serve the same function: to collect blood during a period. The menstrual cup was first introduced in the 1930s and seems to be growing in popularity and curiosity over the years. Purchasing considerations are important since getting the right fit can be half the battle. Some brands come in two sizes—small (before having a baby through the vagina) and large (after having a baby through the vagina). If you have not had a baby, you would want to purchase a small size to avoid the menstrual cup from falling out of the vagina with straining, such as when having a bowel movement. What Women Love About the Menstrual Cup

  • Natural and environmental friendly way to collect Aunt Flo’s monthly gift.
  • Saves a lot of money on those costly tampons and pads.
  • Healthier alternative than inserting commercially made products into the vagina.
  • Convenient; no need to stock pile tampons and pads in your backpack.
  • More comfortable than tampons and pads.
  • Nighttime blood collection is often easier to collect, and it saves cleaning bloody sheets in the morning.
  • Only have to buy one every year or so—the cost on average is $40.
  • You can use it to collect blood if you want to have sex during your period

What Women Hate About the Menstrual Cup

  • It’s not so easy to insert into the back of the vagina (where is that 3rd hand when you need it?).
  • Removing it is challenging and can be bloody.
  • Getting the right fit can be tricky.
  • You may be more prone to yeast and bacterial infections if left in too long or not cleaned properly.
  • Straining with a bowel movement may just pop it right out of your va-jay jay!

If Cirque du Soleil is not your thing, the menstrual cup may not be for you. For those who swear by it, the menstrual cup can be life-changing, so it may be worth trying. If this has sparked your interest, shop around and see which brand and size is the right fit for your vagina. The bottom line is, “To each her own!” Cover image courtesy of Shutterstock. Originally posted on HelloFlo

Posted in: Let's Talk Women's Health

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