Attn: Giveaway at the bottom of this post!
Tampons and menstrual pads are the go-to products for most women. They are what you see sold in traditional stores and what you see advertised in TV commercials and magazine ads. They are far from the only options women have though. Hopefully by now you have also heard of some of the alternatives…cloth pads, natural tampons (sponges), and of course menstrual cups.
Let’s start off by saying that this product was not my first rodeo with menstrual cups. I have been using them for years. I have tried several different brands and have been happy with all them. Last month though was my first time using the Sckoon cup brand. Before that I used to purchase their cloth diapers and baby clothes…though that was some time ago.
A menstrual cup does what a tampon or pad does but rather than absorb the flow it collects it. It IS a cup. If you are not squeamish about inserting a tampon then you should not be squeamish about inserting a cup. It is basically the exact same thing. The only difference is that you pull a tampon out with a string and toss it in the toilet. With a cup you pull it out, empty it into the toilet, and then wash it for re-use. I guess it is slightly more complicated then a pad or tampon but once you get the hang of it, it is no big deal.
I like menstrual cups more than I ever liked tampons. For whatever reason I could always feel tampons, even though they say you shouldn’t. With a cup…I truly cannot feel it. Tampon applicators are also really slippery, which meant many times I had problems with insertion and had to use toilet paper to kind of dry it off and try again. With one brand of menstrual cup I have had some launch failures for the same reason, slippery-ness. With the Sckoon cup there are neato grooves on the bottom (of their otherwise silky smooth and comfortable cup) that give you something to grip and hence no issues with that. See them below…
While on the subject of how it compares to other cups let me also use this same photo to show you how it has that little stem sticking out of the bottom of the cup. The other brands have that too but instead of a solid stem that tapers off they have a little hollow tube. That tube collects menstrual flow and has to be washed out…this is not an issue with the Sckoon. This may seem like a small detail but I really like it.
I also love that the Sckoon cups come in COLORS!!! My other cup is clear and it has started to look dingy over time. I am not willing to use anything harsher than soap and water to clean it because I want it to last. These colored cups solve that issue because they will stay pretty and not get discolored. I have blue obviously but they also come in other colors.
As with other cups it comes in two sizes. Size 1 is for people who have never given birth vaginally. Size 2 is for those of us who have given birth vaginally. It is made from FDA approved soft medical-grade silicon, so it’s safe, reusable, environmentally friendly.
If you need a crash course in how to use a menstrual cup it is really very easy… Take the cup in hand and fold it using your fingers. Insert pushing up and backwards (towards your back). Your vaginal muscles will grip it and keep it in place and it will open once it is up there too. When you are ready to take it out simply bear down a little bit and the bottom part will come out. Grip it and pull it out carefully so you don’t spill. Dump the contents, wash it with soap and water, and re-insert.
The only time when this becomes a bit tricky is when you are using a public bathroom. I simply dump it out and reinsert it and then remember to wash it as soon as I get home. I also use toilet paper from the bathroom stall to clean my hands off so I don’t leave a public bathroom stall with blood all over them. No need to freak anyone out. I don’t imagine that it is any harder than inserting a tampon in a public place.
After using it through two menstrual cycles I will be reaching for my Sckoon cup before my “other” cup now. It gets an A++ in my book!
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The company is generously allowing me to giveaway one of their cups! I have a size 2 cup in blue. Just like the one in my photos. To enter to win in fill out the Rafflecopter form below. Good luck!
a Rafflecopter giveaway
I received a free menstrual cup to facilitate this review and it was done in affiliation with the Green Moms Media.
This post brought to you by Softcup. All opinions are 100% mine.
When it comes to our periods women have other options, beyond the traditional tampon or sanitary pad, though you would not think so by looking at most store shelves. Tampons and pads reign supreme and yet both have so many issues, healthwise and environmental, that it makes sense to look at the other options.
Pads are sumpremely uncomfortable (like wearing a diaper), they leak, and they end up in landfills in mass quantities. Tampons give us a bit more freedom but they rob us of moisture and put us at risk for Toxic Shock Syndrome (TSS) which is pretty nasty. Both are made with bleached materials and a host of not so savory chemicals.
Years ago I made the switch to a menstrual cup and have never looked back. I sing their praises to any woman who will listen and lately many women have asked me what I think about the disposable cups on the market like SoftCup. I never tried them so I didn’t have much to offer other than my initial reaction which was that I do not prefer single use disposable products. This week though I decided to give it ago in the name of research of course, and see I thought about them. I was pleasantly surpised to find that that I like them very much.
It is a cup that collects that menstrual flow and instead of washing and reusing like you would with a regular cup, these are meant to be tossed in the garbage after each use. They are much safer for you then a tampon, with no known risk of TSS. It’s hypo-allergenic, latex-free and completely safe when used as directed. I think they make a great intro product for any woman looking to see if a cup will work for them.
Insertion was easy. You just squeeze the cup together and insert by pushing down and back as far as it will go. I found it easiest to insert in the shower. Getting it out had me just a bit worried but that was no big deal either. You just bear down a bit and hook your finger under the rim and remove (keeping is steady to avoid a spill). After that you can dump the liquid in the toilet (or let it go down the shower drain), stick the cup back inside the wrapper, and throw away.
What I liked best: They are very comfortable (can’t even feel it). I could exercise as usual and this was a biggie for me because I love my CrosssFit classes and I have had issues with my regular cup during strenuous exercise. On heavy flows days I will skip class but that would not be necessary with the Softcup. I could swim while wearing it and and even have sex while wearing it without any kind of mess whatsoever ( I was very impresed). It can be worn for 12 hours.
buy Softcup now
Find Softcup on social media: @InsteadSoftcup on Twitter & Softcup on Facebook
We don’t have any dogs in our home…yet. We badly want one but we are renters and it’s just too much stress to have a pet at this time. To get our fill we have to make regular trips to Nana’s house where there are two furbabies available to love on.
Every year the #1 Christmas gift priority award is bestowed upon those dogs by my kids. Forget everyone else in the family…as long as those doggies have full stockings we are all good.
This means I have to be on the lookout for more planet friendly options and there are many at the Only Natural Pet Store. I recently got an email highlighting their new 2 Ball Toss & Tug Toy. It’s a durable, inventive toy made entirely of reclaimed materials, making it more eco-friendly. The rope is repurposed climbing rope and the balls are reclaimed. Made in Colorado too! I know two someone’s named Zoey and Koko who would love these…
Also Read: Healthy Pets, Green Pets
Ecocentric Mom is a monthly product subscription service. I have reviewed a handful of these services on this blog and have always really liked the concept. It makes me feel like I am getting presents when every month something is delivered to my door with surprise goodies. Even though you are paying for it, it is still tons of fun. This particular box is designed to provide you with an array of earth friendly goodies for mom each month.
I got a box from Ecocentric Mom to review this month…their first month in service. Let’s dig in shall we?
Orgain Creamy Chocolate Fudge Nutritional Shake – This is a really interesting product. It is part protein shake and part veggie/fruit smoothie. It is designed to be a meal replacement shake or just a nutritional booster. I think it will make an awesome post workout refresher after CrossFit today. It has 24 vitamins and minerals and real fruits and veggies, all organic. The only thing I don’t care for is the fact that it is sweetened with brown rice syrup. As a paleo I probably will not continue buying.
Natural Vitality Natural Calm Organic Cherry Flavor - We love Natural Calm products so this was a welcome addition to the box. We are big fans of magnesium supplementation.
Tree Hugger Bubble Gum - My kids rarely get gum (see why here) so they were all over the two bags of gum in this box. It is naturally colored gumballs, gluten free, cane sugar, nut free, dairy free, kosher, and made with a sustainable chicle gum base. I had some myself and adored the cinnamon. Yum!
Laura Brooke Cosmetiques Guava Lip Glaze – Made with organic, natural ingredients. I will testing this out at BlogHer next week but so far I like it.
Vaska Scent Free Laundry Detergent - I have used Vaska before and liked it. I am sure I will feel the same this go round.
Naturally It’s Clean Floor Cleaner - I love the orange scent of this. I typically just use vinegar/water or maybe some Dr. Bronner’s so it is nice to use something new. Made with water, plant based enzymes, coconut oil surfactants, essential orange oil, and natural orange color.
Green Body Green Planet Shampoo and Conditioner – I got four little bottles. Two are the Energy blend (body and fullness) and two are the Revitalizing (cleanse and nourish) blend. Their formulas consist of 13 organic plant extracts and oils meant to nourish the hair and scalp. They are also sulphate free! I plan to take these to New York next week (BlogHer) and will replace the hotel shampoo and conditioner bottles with these.
Lastly the box came with a 100% natural cotton sport pack, coupons, and a brochure highlighting the products and giving out online coupon codes for many of them for anywhere from 10% to 40% off online purchase.
You can join Ecocentric Mom here for as little as $17 a month and free shipping.
About the same time I got my new bed I also got a new pillow. Hurray! Before getting to test drive the Savvy Rest Shredded Latex Pillow you see above I was using some organic cotton pillows that frankly were not that comfortable. In fact I was using two of them at once because they tended to get flatter and flatter with each passing day. I ended up passing my pillows on to my daughter, along with my old bed actually. While neither is that great IMO they are better than what she currently had. Why is it that kids pillows always end up stained and gross even if you have rules about food in the bedroom???
Anyway, Savvy Rest sells lots of organic and natural bedding products including natural mattresses. When my pillow arrived it came over stuffed so I had to remove quite a bit of the shredded latex filling. I ended up bagging it and it will hang out in my closet until I figure out a way to reuse it. It is super soft Dunlop and natural Talalay latex rubber that is shredded into tiny pieces. I am am not big on the big blocks of latex that make up contoured pillows so this seemed like the perfect compromise. The cover is organic cotton.
I have been using it for a few weeks now and I quite like it. Being able to add/remove the filling allows you to customize it to your preferred comfort level. If you like a firm pillow no problem. If you like a soft pillow that is no problem either just remove the fill as needed. I find that I needed to remove quite a bit since I have a memory foam mattress that I tend to sink into. I imagine I could make another pillow with what I have left over. ;) Plus the cover is removeable so that it can be washed if it gets dirty.
Helpful Links: Savvy Rest on Facebook | Savvy Rest on Google+ | Savvy Rest on Pinterest
I have a giveaway for US readers. If you would like to win a standard size, shredded latex pillow then fill out the Rafflecopter form below. A winner will be selected at random. Good luck!
a Rafflecopter giveaway
Disclosure: I received a free pillow to review for this post but my opinions as always are my own.