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10
May

Green Your Period with The DivaCup

by Tiffany in Beauty

Ever come across a product that you may have hesitated to buy at first and then it ends up changing your life and you cannot imagine life without it? The Diva Cup is one of those for me. I think I first wrote about this wonderful product about 7 or 8 years now. The concept of reusables came into my life via cloth diapers and then cloth pads for moms. While I have lots of love for those too it was the Diva Cup that ended up being the real game changer. After the second month using it I knew that I would be using a menstrual cup until I no longer needed them anymore (menopause). Also being the big fan that I am, I will happily introduce these to my daughter from the get-go. I only have a few more years until I am likely to do that. Yikes! Where does the time go?

My motivation in trying the cup was to reduce waste and eliminate the need to buy disposable pads and tampons. I also HATED both of these products with a passion. They are more like modern day torture devices and I can see why so many women refer to that time of month as a curse when those are the standard options. Who wants to deal with adult diaper rash from pads and the dryness and possible Toxic Shock Syndrome (TSS) from tampons? Not me, thank you. Cloth pads I found, were infinitely more comfortable but they also required more work. Storing them until wash day and then actually washing them was not going to make my top ten favorite things to do list. Then I came across a mention of menstrual cups on a cloth diapering message board and I ordered one. We have been likes peas and carrots ever since.

If you are not familiar with The Diva Cup, it is a cup that is inserted just like a tampon is. The “cup” catches your monthly flow and when it is full you simply empty it, wash with soapy water, and reinsert. It is made of soft medical grade silicone, which is latex-free, 100% hypoallergenic and odorless. It comes with a lovely carrying case so that you can keep it clean between uses and hidden away so kids won’t be inclined to steal it and play with it in the tub like it some kind of toy. Not saying that has ever happened but it could…hypothetically. I will say that it is really fun to explain to any male child that happens to be handling the cup, what it is and what it does. ;) This may be why I recently had to replace mine though. After one such conversation it mysteriously disappeared after bathroom cleaning duty. I think it disappeared into the trash. I wasted no time buying a new one and if you need one in a hurry you can find them at Whole Foods usually.

Reusable menstrual products are healthier to use and infinitely more comfortable.  They may take some adjustment as some women/girls may be uncomfortable dealing with menstrual blood because of years of using disposable, traditional products. I will admit that I am not squeamish in that regard. Caring for them is pretty easy too.

Have you tried a menstrual cup yet? What are you waiting for?

Related: Alternative Menstrual Products – Ditch the Disposables

Thursday, May 10th, 2012

33 Comments

  • Silverstar7337

    That looks huge! And a bit scary… I like the idea behind it and the green aspect.. But I don’t know if it would be leak proof, easy to conceal in my purse, how do you know when it’s getting full? I’m a bit scared of this :p

    • http://www.naturemoms.com/blog Tiffany

      You know it is getting full when it starts to make it’s way downward and feel uncomfortable. Also it does not leak unless it is full, much like a tampon. It takes a month or two to get used to it but once you do, it is wonderful!

      • Rozax

        This is the most discreet menstrual product in existence!  I never carry it in my purse, because I can insert the cup when I feel that my period is about to start.  You can’t do that with a tampon, and while you can do that with a pad, you’ll be wasting a product when you realize your period hasn’t started, yet.  With the cup, you just wash it after the requisite 12 hours, and then put it back in.

      • Rozax

        Sorry, Tiffany! I hit the wrong Reply link. Please, feel free to delete the following duplicate. ^^;

    • http://www.facebook.com/lunagals Luna Gals

      It might look big at first but it’s really not much bigger than a tampon when you’re inserting it. Check out this video for a comparison: http://youtu.be/NPMKn45yQuY

    • http://profiles.google.com/sarahdams1 Sarah Damery

       It comes in two different sizes(the one in the picture is probably size 2), and it’s really no bigger than a standard tampon. You only have to empty it twice a day (about every 12 hours) so carrying it shouldn’t be a problem.  I love the little bag it comes with! I’ve had mine for about six months and it’s been great.  I wore pads with it the first couple of months, but now I don’t need to. 

    • lady

       it is leak proof until it gets full, but I usually wear a thin cloth pad underneath just as I did when I wore tampons. It’s the same concept. How did you know when your tampon was full( of blood)? Maybe when you started to leak a little or maybe you just tried to change them a regular intervals, right? I empty my diva cup at regular intervals, like every couple of hours and have had no issues. It take some getting used to collapsing and inserting & removing the cups, but there was also a learning curve related to inserting tampons, right?

    • Rozax

      This is the most discreet menstrual product in existence!  I never carry it in my purse, because I can insert the cup when I feel that my period is about to start.  You can’t do that with a tampon, and while you can do that with a pad, you’ll be wasting a product when you realize your period hasn’t started, yet.  With the cup, you just wash it after the requisite 12 hours, and then put it back in.

  • anon nz

    i find tampons painful to put in and uncomfortable once there, but i hate pads as well, how would a cup differ for me? money is very tight so i cant afford to waste money just to see if it works?

    • http://www.naturemoms.com/blog Tiffany

      The cups are smooth and easier going in then tampons. I also don’t even feel mine if I get it up high enough.

      • Michelle

        What size tampon do you use? I use the slender and that even bothers me and can hurt at times. I want to try, but it definitely is a bit intimidating! 

        • Rozax

          I promise you, this is nothing like a tampon.  While tampons force your body to conform to its shape, the cup is flexible and conforms to yours.  Every size of tampon always caused me discomfort, but I have no problems whatsoever with my cup.  And if the Diva brand doesn’t work for you (I’ve been using it for a year and have NOT had one single leak!) there are roughly 26 others out there. http://bit.ly/JUac2I Aside from the DivaCup, the Keeper, Mooncup, and Lunette are also popular in the US.

        • Rozax

          I promise you, this is nothing like a tampon.  While tampons force your body to conform to its shape, the cup is flexible and conforms to yours.  Every size of tampon always caused me discomfort, but I have no problems whatsoever with my cup.  And if the Diva brand doesn’t work for you (I’ve been using it for a year and have NOT had one single leak!) there are roughly 26 others out there. http://bit.ly/JUac2I Aside from the DivaCup, the Keeper, Mooncup, and Lunette are also popular in the US.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1203754809 Jenny McFaull Camp

    Love my cup!  I’ve been wearing one for years.  The first few months were tricky, but it was worth it.  I wish I had discovered them years ago.  I will definitely introduce my daughters to cups.  I would much rather use a cup than expose myself to toxic chemicals and add more garbage to our world.  

  • Juanita

    Anyone with firsthand experience introducing this to a newly pubertal girl? Issues to troubleshoot?

  • Beth Lehman

    love the diva cup and have had one for 12 years (actually started with another product called The Keeper – same concept).  it is the BEST thing.  i never even have cramps with is – nothing scientific here, but seems to be true for me.  i agree it can take a cycle or two to be comfortable with it, but it is so worth it!  i don’t know about young girls.  mine hasn’t started her period yet, but she knows what i use.  i think you have to pretty comfortable with your body to use one!  

  • http://www.facebook.com/cher.fauvel Cher Fauvèl

    Wow never seen those, that’s cool, no waste more hygienic, no toxins - awesome, thank you for sharing ;)
    Cher 

  • Kaloke

    I’m just worried about leaking and how many times do you have to wash it out? I hate buying tampons and I have loved the idea of a menstrual cup but just haven’t taken the step to buy one. Are they sold in any other stores besides whole foods?

    • KarinSDCA

      REI carries them. Some health and natural foods stores, in addition to Whole Foods, also carry them. There are more options online, however. The Diva Cup is not the only brand.

      In fact, for those concerned about shapes and sizes and fit, etc….try googling for further information. There are at least half a dozen different brands that come in different shapes, colors, and sizes. Knowing your body is absolutely the key!

  • Sara

    I’ve been using a cup for 12-15 years can’t remember for sure. They are sooo much better than tampons or pads. They only leak if it’s full and doesn’t get emptied in time. The first couple days of my cycle are very heavy so I have to empty every 6 hours rather than 12 on those days. If you’re in town or out somewhere and have to empty it, you can take a wet paper towel in the stall with you to wipe it out and reinsert. It does seem big at first but it is squished flat and folded in half to insert.

    I have two girls so I too am interested in knowing about introducing them to a cup when they first begin their cycle. I guess it would totally depend on the girl and how comfortable they are with it.

  • Gina

    I like the Diva Cup but you definitely have to insert it correctly.  I was having problems with leaking, but I read the directions again and realized I was not inserting at at the proper angle.  It got better once I did it right, but I have to say, mine often leaks a tiny bit, well before it could be full.  Also, the company says to rinse it when you empty it, but that can be tricky if you’re at work and in a public restroom.  Not sure people want to see menstrual fluid in the sink. Someone else said they wipe it out with a paper towel and re-insert. Will have to try that, though I can usually make it through the work day without removing it.  And one last point.  Someone here said they’ve had one for 3 years — the official company line is that you have to replace it yearly, though I’ve had mine for 2 years and it’s fine, but I alternate with tampons and pads.

  • Sharisse Lopez

    I love my Diva Cup. :)

  • http://www.facebook.com/beth.terry1 Beth Terry

    Tiffany, I posted this to my Facebook page, and it’s generated more comments than probably anything else I have posted there.  Sadly, though, it doesn’t look like the comments are making their way over here.  Here’s the conversation:  http://www.facebook.com/MyPlasticfreeLife/posts/221619561283351

    • http://www.naturemoms.com/blog Tiffany

      Great conversation Beth! Thanks for sharing. ;)

    • Rozax

      How awesome that you got so much conversation going!  Though I must confess, that is not the first time I’ve seen that wretched Amazon review, and I’m beginning to loathe it.  If one cup does not work, I’ve come across a list of 26 other brands that they could potentially try. http://bit.ly/JUac2I

  • Lea

    I dont use the cup but have been using cloth pads by the same company and love them..so much better and more comfortable than the disposable products!

  • http://twitter.com/IThoughtIKnewMa IThoughtIKnewMama

    I’ve got a nice new selection of cloth pads that I look forward to using post-partem, but I definitely want to try the Diva Cup once the need arises again. Sharing!

  • Sabina

    Any problems with leakage while you’re laying down…can you sleep with it in?

    • http://www.naturemoms.com/blog Tiffany

      Yes, you can and no issues with leakage if you empty it before going to sleep.

  • http://twitter.com/_Mstar_ *✩‿✩*

    I’ve been using a similar product that I THOUGHT was reusable. In a pinch you could do,  but, well you’re not supposed to. Anyway I’m glad I saw this post because I thought all inserts on the market were like the one I was using – i.e. disposable but could still get away with using repeatedly even though you’re not supposed to, LoL. If that makes sense. Glad I got some new info!

    • http://www.naturemoms.com/blog Tiffany

      Glad to help!

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