ALL YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT MENSTRUAL CUPS AND INTIMATE HYGIENE

For a few years now, I have wanted to try menstrual cups because I liked the concept of NO DISPOSING. They are reusable, durable for around 5-7 years and, therefore, environment-friendly. The idea of not having to buy sanitary pads every month was a plus point for me. But, after using pads all my life, I was pretty hesitant to switch to menstrual cups as I didn’t know how to wear one, how to handle it during travel and how it would perform. Of course, the latter being the biggest concern of all.

So, while these lockdowns opened doors to many opportunities, I finally took the plunge and decided to try a menstrual cup while we were all stuck at home. In case you have also been wanting to try one, this is the best time. Or you could just avoid making any outdoor plans during the red days, and give it a shot.

menstrual cups and intimate hygiene
Let’s switch to reduce medical waste

WHAT IS A MENSTRUAL CUP MADE UP OF?

Generally, a good brand will make their cups out of medical grade silicone, which is flexible and washable. It does not absorb the menstrual fluid but merely collects it, making it more hygienic than wearing sanitary pads.

menstrual cups and intimate hygiene
A typical menstrual cup

PARTS OF A MENSTRUAL CUP

The topmost part is called the ‘rim’. This will also include tiny holes to release the suction. The middle part or the cup is called the ‘body’. Measurement levels are mentioned on it, so, you can keep track of your flow each day. Under the base of the cup you will find a ‘knob’ or ‘stem’ that you will hold to pull the cup out. Some cups have a knob/stem with round tips in order to make pulling out even easier.

HOW TO CHOOSE A MENSTRUAL CUP

When I went online to choose a cup, I was baffled. It asked for my size and really, who knows our sizes down there? I looked up a couple of videos on YouTube and decided to try one. So, in general, a ‘Small’ size (that collects up to 16ml) would be comfortable for young sexually inactive teenagers with a low flow. A ‘Medium’ size (that collects up to 21 – 25ml) would be worn by those who are married and sexually active with a medium flow. Older women or someone with a heavy flow could try out a ‘Large’ size (that collects up to 26 – 28ml). But, all said and done, this is definitely trial and error before you find the right one for you. So, honestly, it may take you around 3 to 4 menstrual cycles to get used to wearing a cup.

HOW TO INSERT AND REMOVE A MENSTRUAL CUP

Firstly, you have to make up your mind about trying it yourself. You can insert and remove the cup while standing or squatting (or whichever other position you find comfortable). Press the cup to flatten the rim and body and then fold it in half. Insert it into the vagina and allow it to pop open inside you. Don’t give up very easily. It may take you some time initially, but soon, you will be doing this in a matter of seconds. You will experience discomfort in the beginning, but once you wear it right, you should not be able to feel the cup at all.

To remove it, hold the knob/stem and pull it out gently and pour the contents of the cup into an appropriate place. It could get messy, so make sure you have water and a dry cloth with you.

WHEN TO EMPTY THE CONTENTS OF THE CUP

A good menstrual cup will allow usage for about 12 hours at a stretch, without emptying. But, it all depends on your flow. Initially, you may want to check and empty every 4 to 8 hours as everyone’s body is different. During your menstrual cycle, you can quickly wash the cup with warm water and dry it before inserting it again.

menstrual cups and intimate hygiene
Natural Menstrual Cup wash

HOW TO CLEAN AND STORE THE MENSTRUAL CUP

After your cycle, you can either sterilize it by boiling it in water for around 5 – 8 minutes or use 5 – 6 drops of a natural menstrual cup wash and rub gently all over before rinsing it off with water. After drying it, you can store it in the pouch that comes along with it. Avoid storing it in a plastic or airtight container.

WHEN CAN I USE A MENSTRUAL CUP?

Once you are comfortable with the shift from tampons/pads to menstrual cups, you can use the cups while you’re sleeping, swimming or doing any other sports activity.

WHEN NOT TO USE A MENSTRUAL CUP

*During intercourse
*Immediately after delivery, miscarriage or abortion
*For urine collection
*In case of medical concerns, adverse effects and unbearable discomfort

WATCH THE VIDEO TO GET A GIST IF YOU’RE NEW TO MENSTRUAL CUPS

OKAY! SO, HOW DO I BEGIN?

When you have finally thought this through and bought your first menstrual cup, try it along with a sanitary pad to avoid staining your clothing; especially while travelling to avoid embarrassing situations. Once you are ready, happy and relaxed with the cup, you can keep your sanitary pads for emergency cases only.

If you have medical concerns, a diaphragm or IUD, please consult your gynaecologist first.

menstrual cups and intimate hygiene
Intimate wipes and wash

ABOUT INTIMATE HYGIENE

Some of us have excessive vaginal discharge, irritation or itching. This in turn could lead to pH imbalances making the intimate area prone to bacterial, viral or fungal infections. Whether you are using sanitary pads, tampons or menstrual cups, your intimate hygiene is most important. So, here are some vaginal hygiene tips that every woman should keep in mind:

*Make sure your undergarments are always dry.
*Avoid douching or using soap and scented products on the vagina.
*Clean and dry your vagina after urination, intercourse or changing pads/tampons/emptying cups.
*Use a chemical free intimate wash once a day or as advised by your physician.
*While travelling, you can use natural intimate wipes to feel clean and fresh.

menstrual cups and intimate hygiene
Pin it if you care!



If you find this article useful and informative, do share it with friends and family to spread awareness about menstrual cups and intimate hygiene. Also, let’s reduce the medical waste in our country and slowly heal the world around us. Together we can surely make this a safer place to live in.

Have you tried menstrual cups? What are your views on it?

This blog post is part of the blog challenge
‘Blogaberry Dazzle’
hosted by
Cindy D’Silva and Noor Anand Chawla,
and generously SPONSORED BY
Bugshield Clothing – Enjoy Outdoors More!

List of brands that sell menstrual cups: PeeSafe, Gynocup, Sirona, Evereve, etc. And, intimate wash: MamaXpert, Sanfe, Himalaya, etc.

Cindy D'Silva
Cindy D'Silva
Cindy D'Silva, besides being a mother of two angels, is a belly dancer, writer and photographer. She loves partying, bowling and eating sushi. There is a detailed biography about her on the ABOUT ME page in case you would like to know more. :) You can like and follow her Facebook page to get all updates on the latest blogs and more: https://www.facebook.com/blogaberry/

93 Comments

  1. I have been sceptical to use menstrual cup in fear of foing it all wrong. It is good to know about it in so much details here. Intimate wash is an essential part of my daily requirements

  2. Mrinal Kiran says:

    I have never tried menstrual cups. But I might give it a try now. Thank you for sharing all this information.

  3. Intimate health is so important. It is also important to adapt to new and innovative methods that are safe and eco-friendly. This is a very informative post that answers many questions that people have.

  4. As you have mentioned, even I have not been comfortable with this. But I like your suggestion of using a sanitary pad along with the cup till one gets used to it. I will give that a try.

  5. Neha Tambe says:

    Thanks for this informative post. I was considering menustration cups but was worried about hygiene aspects. Your post cleared my doubts.

  6. Thanks for this elaborative post which would be quite helpful for those who wish to start using menstrual cup. I’m using it and feel so comfortable.

  7. Kavita Singh says:

    I started using menstrual cups a couple of years ago. With my experience so far, one point which is a must to follow is proper hygiene when it comes to changing these cups. Learn how to wash it properly and sanitize it from time to time.

    • Shreemayee Chattopadhyay says:

      Really very helpful post. I never used any menstrual cup. You have explained this so nicely, I think now I can gather the courage to try one. Thanks for the tips for keeping intimate hygiene properly.

  8. Taranpreet says:

    Firstly thank you for the in detail right up. I have always been curious about using menstrual cups but at the same time the thought just scared me for some reason. Reading your post I definitely want to give it a try this year

  9. Tina Basu says:

    This is an interesting thing to try because it is so eco friendly, but I am always scared of making a mess. I have never tried a menstrual cup but maybe I should give it a try sometime. This is an in-depth post you have written.

  10. This was one of the best articles that I have read on the menstrual cup so far. Very detailed and informative post. I liked how you have mentioned the sizes of the cup for the different age group of females. I feel guilty every time I use sanitary pads high-time to make the change.

  11. Neha Jain says:

    I have been using mensuration Cup from two years and can say it’s a blessing for every woman. Just maintaining proper hygiene and cleaning can keep you away from all worries

  12. Milan Singhal says:

    I want to make the shift but still hesitant. nevertheless, this is helpful post for those wanting to use menstrual cup.

  13. Rakhi Parsai says:

    I have been contemplatimng about using msntrual cups for a while now but was always scared to insert it. This post indeed gives nice insights on the cups and how its a great choice

  14. Cindy, it will be so good if we all start using the menstrual cups instead of sanitary pads, yet I feel this switch will take some more time. Once the inhibition is broken and then it can be used by all.

  15. Menstrual cups are so environment friendly, think of how many less sanitary pads will be needed> and you can avoid nappy rash too ! Great post Cindy , I have shared it with my friends .

  16. Smitha N says:

    Don’t know when I think of using menstrual cup I always fail to make up my mind I find it always so difficult… Let’s hope in future will plan to use.

  17. Much needed post dear the more awareness we create around this the better. Will definitely share it with all my readers too

  18. Ruchi Verma says:

    This is really one of the most insightful posts on menstrual cups, as for a long time even I was unaware of many things related to this and now this will help many women to understand it in a better way!!

  19. I had heard a lot about menstrual cup before but did not know much insight about it. I really liked the way you had explained everything about it. I am sure this info will help all of those who are new to menstrual cup.

  20. Very insightful post on the menstrual cup . But I’m still sceptical when it comes to the insertion. Hoping to make the change sooner

  21. Thanks for the very informative post, I have been curious about this for a long time.

  22. This is such a detailed post Cindy. Honestly, I have been wanting to try menstrual cups for a long time now, but the very thought of insertion petrifies me. Nevertheless, I think I will do some research and choose my brand, as using a menstrual cup is much eco-friendly than using sanitary pads.

  23. Aishwarya Sandeep says:

    This was an informative article. But I had a few queries. What about the women who are prone to UTI’s . One of my biggest fears is UTI’s while using a menstrual cup. Plus I am unsure whether it will suit me or I may end up staining my dress.

  24. Thanks for this lovely post. I my self have been contemplating on shifting from pads to cups but had some apprehension that were holding me back. Your post has helped me move a step forward in making the shift.

  25. I prefer menstrual cups over pads or Tampalon…. It’s eco friendly as well as reusable and handy too….

  26. Jyoti says:

    This is a very informative and detailed article. All my doubts about using a menstrual cup are definitely cleared.

  27. Bhawna Shah says:

    Your post is quite detailed one which clears all those doubts which a female may have in her mind. Frankly speaking, I can’t make up my mind for this cup. May be one day I will use it.

  28. Amrit Kaur says:

    It is important to take proper care of intimate areas. I haven’t used menstrual cups ever but yes I do use intimate hygienic washes to keep that area healthy and clean.

  29. Varsh says:

    This is a good and detailed review. I’ve used menstrual cups but have not made the switch to them entirely. They’re quite comfortable while playing sports and travelling.

  30. Sakshi Varma says:

    I have read so much about menstrual cups but I think your blog is one of the most comprehensive written on this topic. Thanks so much for this information.

  31. Snigdha says:

    I had bought a menstrual cup but never tried . I am too afraid to try out the cup . But after your post I might try that out .

  32. Ruchi Verma says:

    Intimate hygiene is really important and this is a really great concept. I have seriously not used this but yes, there are so many myths too involved with menstrual cups that need to be busted!!

  33. Ishieta says:

    This is a well written and detailed post. there is so much information out there and the general mistrust of anything new that such a post helps to understand the benefits and how one can use it.

  34. I have been planning to switch to menstrual cup for quite sometime but could never muster the courage. Lets see when.

  35. Rakhi says:

    Omg I so wish I had read the post before
    I have been flagrantly using strong intimate washes and ended up killing all.good bacteria. Resultant, I ended up.with infections.

  36. Manisha Garg says:

    I haven’t had the courage to try menstrual cups but your post is very helpful and answers all the concerns I had in mind.

  37. sonam jain says:

    this is an amazing post ..so so informative. I know many women who wish to move from sanitary napkins to the menstrual cup but are not able to do so.. I am sure this post will help them..thanks for writing on this

  38. Jhilmil says:

    I was a lot scared of Menstrual cups till a few years ago, but now I’m a regular and happy user of it. Glad you wrote the post around it

  39. Kavita Singh says:

    Okay, so my experience with menstrual cups has not been very pleasant and this reminds me that I should pen down my thoughts about this soon. The post is quite detailed and I am sure will be really helpful for a lot of women out there.

  40. Abha Mondal says:

    I definitely want to switch to menstrual cup. Every time I use sanitary pads I think about medical waste we are producing. Great and informative post especially about the size of the cup and how to use it.

  41. Arti Singh says:

    Recently i got this product and i am yet to start using it but this sounds really very positive and environmentally friendly product , the way you have wrote it is really brilliant

  42. I have never tried menstrual cups but my friends use it. I have been hesitant to try it as my flow is too heavy first three days and hence I am not sure whether the cup would hold it. But as you suggested I could give it a try while I am at home so I get used to it first. Very nice article.

  43. Priyanka Chhabria says:

    I have been thinking of switching to cups for a long time now. But every time I go back to pads. I don’t know what I am afraid of. But I think I am gonaa give it a go this time:)

  44. Smitha N says:

    I was the one who always scared to use menstrual cup it was like complicated but your post has helped me out definitely will be checking out thank you for sharing your post…

  45. Ritu Bindra says:

    This is extremely useful information, Cindy. I have never used them, my gynaec has advised me against them due to my allergies. Although I do know that the silicone is medical grade.

  46. Hey Cindy, this is a very informative and detailed article. Anyone having doubts about using a menstrual cup could find all the information here, so I am going to share it 🙂

  47. Madhu says:

    I have heard a lot about menstrual cups. This is quite a detailed post and would help those who are considering it. First-hand information is always helpful.

  48. I had heard a lot about menstrual cup before but never tried it personally. Your post is really informative and you had covered all important aspect well in this post. Indeed it is an eco friendly option .

  49. Monidipa says:

    I have heard a lot about menstrual cups but I have never used them. You have explained it really well though!

  50. Menstrual cup has been a very innovative product. But the awareness has been low . Glad to have read ur very informative blog Cindy 🙂 its all about giving it a try !!

  51. Thanks for this info.. Was hesitant on how to try one. You have given the detailed information about on what size select.

  52. Raunica says:

    I had heard a lot about them and really liked the idea of it being environment friendly but for some reason i just couldn’t get the fit right so gave up mid way and had forgotten about it until this post.

  53. Arti Singh says:

    This was really very motivating … i have got the Cup but was very skeptical to use, This really helped

  54. Swati Mathur says:

    Cindy this is an awesome post. Thanks a lot for such a detailed one. I was so hesitant to use but I think now I know what to do and what not to thanks to you. I would love to give it a try for sure.

  55. Supriti Garg says:

    First of all hi-five because even i took the plunge of using menstural cup in May, 2020 when we were well into lockdown and didnt have to move out at all. I read, contemplated for around a year before taking that plunge but trust me, i regret why i took so long. Since then i have been persuading my friends and family to switch to it. It is the best invention for a women.. You have detailed out all the pieces of information very well and it will be definitely beneficial for a newbie.

  56. Vasumathi says:

    I have been debating converting to the cup for sometime now. While the environment friendliness is a big plus point, iam very hesitant about inserting it into the body. From the many discussions i have had, i think most women have the same issues. Infact friends who use share tips of how one must conciously relax and not panic. Hope to gather the courage & make the change soon though.

  57. I heard a lot about the menstrual cups. But I am still not very comfortable with it.

  58. A very detailed and easy to follow post for anyone who would like more information on Menstrual Cups.

  59. Shahira says:

    I have read tonnes about the menstrual cup but still, a fear hangs over me to make the change. Hopefully, I will shift one day! Thanks for the detailed article

  60. Even I thought of experiencing Menstrual cups at least once, but somehow always ended with stepping back. Though you have shared a very informative post with all the details regarding using the menstrual cup.

  61. Alpana Deo says:

    I have never used menstrual cups but heard and read a lot about it. Still I am not comfortable in inserting something inside. May be some day I will make up my mind and give it a try.

  62. Harjeet Kaur says:

    Very interesting concept. Hope it helps most women to cross those five days easily. I am going to share this post with those who need it.

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