11 Reasons Why Menstrual Cups Are Better Than Pads Or Tampons
If you’re like most women, the thought of using a menstrual cup may sound too messy, too complicated, or a little too liberal for your taste. I thought the same thing until a year ago, when I gave my first cup a try. The eleven benefits below made me get over these fears real quick — and my periods have been immensely easier to handle ever since.
1. Cups are cheaper than pads or tampons in the long run
Menstrual cups are an investment upfront, ranging from $15 – $40 each; however, the average cup can last you for up to 10 years! Even the most expensive cup pays itself off within 4 menstrual cycles.
2. Cups are safer
Most menstrual cups are made from medical grade silicone or TPE (thermoplastic elastomer), and do not contain any of the dangerous BPA, toxins, or bleaches that are found in popular cotton menstrual products.
3. No odor
We all know what a soiled pad or a soaked tampon smells like — not good. Because a menstrual cup is contained completely inside of you, no blood is ever exposed to the air and hence, there is no odor.
4. Less visits to the bathroom
Cups have a larger capacity than even the largest tampon or pad. You can safely leave a cup in for 12 hours or more, depending on how heavy your flow is that day.
5. No strings attached
One of the most freeing things about menstrual cups is that everything is kept inside of you. You can wear a bathing suit without worrying about a string slipping out. You can go to bed without struggling to get comfortable because of the diaper (I mean pad) that you’re wearing. Rest assured that you can even do acrobatics. Even if you are upside down, the suction that the cup creates at the base of your cervix holds tight, and no blood pours out.
6. One cup can handle every kind of flow
Unlike pads and tampons, one cup can handle any kind of flow, no matter what stage you are in your cycle. You can put a cup in even when you’re spotting — or better yet, not even on your period yet — with no irritation!
7. Gentler on your vagina and cervix
Menstrual cups collect blood rather than absorb it. Unlike tampons, there are no fibers that get left behind when you remove your cup. The cup allows the membranes of your vaginal wall to continue their essential cleansing and protective functions, leaving your pH and bacterial levels balanced and making you less prone to bacterial infections. Additionally, cups do NOT dry you out — so if you do choose to remove your cup for intercourse, your vagina is still lubricated (unlike after you remove a tampon) so you can get down to business quickly.
8. You can buy a cup based on your body’s unique needs
Pads and tampons come in limited sizes: light, normal, heavy, and super. Most tampon applicators are the same shape, and most pads follow the same design. Menstrual cups, on the other hand, have been made to tailor a variety of different cervixes and vaginas! Most brands offer at least 2 different sizes, based on if you’ve given birth vaginally or not. Looking across different brands opens up an even bigger sea of options. The length, shape, and diameter of the cup, the firmness of the cup material, the capacity, and more should all be taken into consideration before purchasing a cup.
9. You get the opportunity to learn about your body
First, inserting and removing a menstrual cup requires you to touch your cervix, a body part which many women can not even recognize. The position of your cervix is one of the three primary fertility signs that you can chart. So inserting a menstrual cup is a great segway to learning how to chart your cycle!
Second, since cups collect rather than absorb blood, emptying your cup allows you to see how much blood you typically shed during your period. Knowing how much blood you typically shed not only makes you more body-literate, but can also allow you to quickly become aware if you are experiencing any irregularities in your cycle.
10. Less landfill waste
Think about this: The average user throws away 275 to 330 pounds of tampons, pads and applicators in their lifetime. Tampons, pads and panty liners along with their packaging and individual wrapping generate more than 200,000 tons of waste per year (and most of it plastic).
You have the ability to never contribute another pound to this waste, simply by investing in a menstrual cup. That’s a pretty high return.
11. Bonus: Better orgasms!
Inserting and removing your cup actually exercises your pelvic floor muscles, which are the muscles that help you achieve orgasms. Improving your pelvic floor muscles can help you get more control over your orgasms. Who would have thought this small piece of silicone could do so much good?!