Reusable Menstrual Products – The Diva Cup
Welcome to our Go Green Challenge: 4 Weeks to an Earth-Friendly Home! Find more posts from this series here. As a reminder, we are talking about eliminating paper products this week.
I am breathing a sigh of relief that I am still enjoying the many benefits of almost-exclusive breastfeeding and have to pass the “share how you’ve eliminated tampons and pads” baton off to someone else. Please note, this post frankly discusses female thangs. If you’re a dude or a woman who doesn’t like private talk discussed publicly, now is a good time to move on to a Cheerios post.
This is a guest post by Anonymous. She’s a real person, promise. She is available to answer questions, so please leave them in the comments section!
My dog is plenty “green.” She “recycles” stuff for us all the time: underwear, tissues, and yes, menstrual products. GROSS! You would never guess it to look at her. Ten pounds of fluffy princess rolled in a body that eats trash (and yes, we feed her really expensive food too).
After a trip to the vet when she ate too many (gag alert!) tampons, we got all new trash cans with lids. She then proceeded to knock them over to get the lid off if there is even a hint of some bodily fluid inside. Hence my new adventure in reusable menstrual products!
I started using cloth pads years ago when my kids were in cloth diapers. I was imagining what it would be like to have a period every day and have to sit in paper constantly. I thought cloth pads would be too gross, but they were just fine; actually soft and absorbent and feels really nice. I found an old dishpan to soak them in, and now they go into the other laundry my kids smear gross things on regularly. Never need to buy paper pads again. (You can find tons of cloth menstrual pads on etsy or LunaPads.com.)
But a reusable menstrual cup? Not sure I wanted to go there. What if it leaked? What if it hurt? What if I couldn’t get it out? Memories flashed of my early married life and trying on the bathroom floor trying to remove my diaphragm (Thankfully I didn’t need to call for help), but after having to search for a place to toss my paper products where my dog couldn’t find them for the last few months, I started getting desperate.
So when a friend recommended the Diva Cup, I thought I would give it a try. After reading through the instructions and a few websites about how to insert it without leakage, I was ready to try it out.
The first time I removed it I thought my cervix was going to come out along with it (this was wildly reminiscent of labor; the sound I was making might have been a bit like it as well). I finally learned how to break the suction before I removed it, while not spilling the contents and voila! Much more comfortable! I had to figure out how it fit best, which took some time with very clean hands doing a little experimenting.
The best part? You can wear the thing for up to twelve hours with no risk of toxic shock syndrome and no worries about your tampon leaking or your clothes getting stained. It works even during exercise, swimming, and sleeping. I don’t have to bother with tampon strings. No giant wads of toilet paper to wrap all my paper products in. No more public bathroom disposal bins. I put it in before I go to work and take out, clean it, and re-insert it in the evening hygienically at home.
My dog is certainly disappointed when she visits our trash now. I empty the contents in to the toilet, flush it away, and wash my hands and menstrual cup clean after each use. Nothing to toss, nothing to hide, nothing to risk my dog eating!
Find more benefits to using The Diva Cup, how to use it, and how to clean it here.
Are you ready to take the plunge? There are two sizes of Diva Cups — one for women under 30 and have never delivered a baby and one for women over 30 or women under 30 who have delivered a baby. Who knew our cervix changed so much? Amazon has both in stock for less than $30 shipped.
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I’ve had my kids via C-section, first one was emergency, and the subsequent my doctor was afraid of rupture. I wonder if the Diva cup or softcup would still work for me.
I don’t see why not! The Diva Cup site has a fantastic FAQ section. This might help: http://divacup.com/how-it-works/medical-questions/
Since having my 5th, my periods are very heavy. I’ve been thinking of trying the diva cup. Does anyone have a tipped uterus? (I’m really tipped) Does it work well for you?
I have been a Diva Cup user since after my 2nd baby about 6 years ago and had two more children since then. I still love it! Getting my period is not a pain like it used to be. I am very active (running, etc) and the Diva Cup is great for continuing to be active during my period. I can’t believe it’s not well-known, so thanks for this post!
I ditto what Addie says! My story is exactly the same, except for the fact I only have had one more baby since. I play soccer, swim, etc. I also had the pee surgery and now don’t leak, so I’m in a much better place, not needing tampons, or poise pads! Life changer that one is. Yippy!!!
I assume you had a prolapsed bladder, which I do as well. Did this work with a prolapse or only after being fixed? Thanks!
I had tried / used the diva cup but I got a bladder infection from the way it sat against my urethra – once I get my period back after I stop Bfing I imagine my body has changed since I gave birth!
After the baby was born I used normal pads (ok not normal – but disposable!) for the first two weeks but then I got the dreaded pad rash and I ordered some glad rags as my “discharge” had slowed a lot but not enough to go without – I was in heaven. They were so much more comfortable. I dont’ think I could do them on a heavy day – but on lighter days the glad rags worked great for me and I had them in maroon so the coloring didn’t bother me one bit!
I used soft cup for years. Loved them. this is cool to.
“The first time I removed it I thought my cervix was going to come out along with it (this was wildly reminiscent of labor; the sound I was making might have been a bit like it as well).”
Hilarious!!! Well put!
Diva cup user here! Couldn’t be happier! On heavier days I do have to change a bit more frequently than 12 hours.