One of my major life regrets is not discovering menstrual cups until my early 30's. Now that I know how amazing they are, I can't believe that I wasted so much money, exposed myself to more toxic chemicals than necessary, and threw so much trash into the landfill.
I'll give a brief introduction to the main benefits of menstrual cups, and then get into the details of my top three choices to consider.
Menstrual Cup Benefits
There are plenty of reasons why you might want to make the switch from disposable pads and tampons to a menstrual cup. The three biggest ones are health reasons, environmental benefits, as well as saving some cold, hard cash!
Here’s something that scares me a lot…
Disposable pads and tampons sometimes contain pesticides and other toxic chemicals in them. Even though there are only trace amounts, it’s thought that repeated exposure to this stuff can cause some pretty serious side effects.
Top-quality menstrual cups are made from medical grade silicone. Be sure to get a cup from a reputable company (keep reading for our recommendations) and wash it well before use to ensure yourself a chemical free period experience.
There’s more! To date, there has been one case of Toxic Shock Syndrome associated with menstrual cup use; there are thousands of cases each year from tampons.
Disposable pads and tampons create a lot of waste that goes straight into the landfill. Considering that the average person menstruates for 40 years, this really adds up. A portion of this waste is non-biodegradable plastic, which will still be here thousands of years from now. Due to the nature of these products, they cannot easily be recycled.
Compare this to menstrual cups—the average one can last for five years, and sometimes up to 10 with proper care and cleaning. They can often be recycled, depending on where you live. 4-8 menstrual cups over the course of a lifetime is certainly better than thousands of pads and tampons.It really does make a huge difference! Imagine if every single menstruating person in the world switched from disposables to reusables?
I’m sure you know this already, but pads and tampons are expensive. This is especially true if you have a heavy and/or long flow. According to the Huffington Post, the average person in the UK spends 13 GBP on period products each month.
A menstrual cup costs about double that, which means that you'll recoup your costs very quickly. A bit more up-front, but savings for years down the road? It's a price I'm willing to pay!Let's get into the Top 3 Menstrual Cups that you might want to consider.
#1: The Diva Cup
The Diva Cup is the most popular menstrual cup in the world. The name is often used interchangeably with "menstrual cup" for this very reason.
The Diva Cup is made in Canada, and has a reputation as a top-quality cup. It's often the one that people try first, and end up sticking with for the rest of their lives. It really is that good!
The Diva Cup has a nice firmness to it, which beginners usually appreciate. The advantage to this is that it should just "pop" into place once you insert it in your vaginal canal. It will then seal to your walls, and not leak.
Check out the Diva Cup website for additional information.
#2: The Lena Cup
Although the Lena Cup is a bit of a newcomer to the menstrual cup scene, it's becoming increasingly popular. The company's mission is to provide an affordable, high-quality menstrual cup and they have certainly done that; it's often a little bit cheaper than something like the Diva Cup.
The Lena Cup is made in the USA from top-quality, medical-grade silicone and it has some of the highest user ratings on Amazon. It's easy to insert, and remove and most people find that it doesn't leak.
The regular Lena Cup has a medium level stiffness, which means that it's easy enough to insert, but not so stiff that it's uncomfortable. There is also the Lena Sensitive if you’re looking for a bit softer of a menstrual cup.
Find out more details at the Lena Cup website.
#3: The Ruby Cup
Taking the last spot on our list of the best menstrual cups is Ruby Cup. Although it's one of the most expensive cups, it has a place on our list because of their buy one, donate one program. For every cup that they sell, they give one to a person in need. To date, they've donated thousands of cups to underprivileged people around the world.
As far as the Ruby Cup goes, I love that the small size is actually small, and the large size is actually large. This is unlike many menstrual cup companies who put out two cups, where one is slightly above, and one slightly below average.
Although the Ruby Cup is made in China, they do have strict manufacturing standards and quality checks in place.
More details at the Ruby Cup Website.
How to Choose Which Menstrual Cup is Right for Me?
If you take a look over on Amazon, you’ll notice that there are 100+ menstrual cups. It can be a bit overwhelming to choose one.
A good place to start is out list here: the Diva Cup, Lena Cup, and Ruby Cup all make an excellent choice for your first menstrual cup.
Of, you could also consider this menstrual cup quiz. There are five simple questions that will only take a minute of your time. At the end, you’ll get a recommendation for the best menstrual cup for your body type.
Check it out here: Menstrual Cup Quiz—Find the Perfect Cup.
What do you Think?
Leave a comment below and tell us your pick for the top menstrual cup.
Author Bio: Jackie Bolen is a tree-hugging, friend of the Earth who can usually be found paddling the rivers, on top of a mountain, or drinking organic coffee around Vancouver Canada. Her hope is that reusable feminine hygiene products will be found in the hands of every single menstruating person in the world.