Tag Archives: product review

To trim or not to trim…

14 Oct

That little stem!

Every menstrual cup comes with a little stem. They say you may cut it off if you like.

I was scared to cut mine off. I depended on it to pull the menstrual cup out for the first four months or so. I tried not to put pressure on myself to be all cool and independent, but rather to get entirely comfortable with the cup before I do anything to jeopardise the value of my little R395 investment!

But the stem pokes! I learned to pull in my vaginal muscles and this helps because it pulls the cup higher up into the vagina. But every now and again I would become uncomfortably aware of that little stem, pushing against the skin that covers the vaginal opening. (I don’t know what the technical name for that skin is).

So I practised. If you are considering trimming the stem, I advise that you practise too. Practise gripping the base of the cup, and not the stem, to pull out the cup. Once I was comfortable with that, I took the plunge… I trimmed it!

I didn’t trim it all the way, yet it was enough for the annoying poking to cease. This might be true for you, too, so you can experiment by only trimming a little bit off initially, especially if you are not quite confident that you will be able to remove it without the stem every time. I assume this depends on the length of your vagina.

I’m glad I trimmed it, but I would recommend gaining some confidence before you do. I like how much control I have nowadays. I can sit right here and push my vaginal muscles down and I will eventually feel the stem. Then I pull them back up and away is the poke… and I can forget about the cup again until tonight.

Removing the cup without using the stem is about equally messy as removing it with the stem, because either way at some point my cup has to be folded slightly to get out and that’s when the blood can spill out if it is quite full. I’ve seen a video of a woman demonstrating how to take out the cup without spilling, using a transparent glass tube as the “vagina”. I have not been able to get that right with my real life vagina! Maybe it’s because I haven’t had sex and my vagina doesn’t sommer stretch widely enough that a fully opened menstrual cup can come back out. I’d love someone who has had sex to comment on whether this will get easier after a woman has had sex?

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My first month with a menstrual cup

7 Apr

My period officially ended two days ago. And I am officially a menstrual cup enthusiast!

Some concerns…

– I think my period pain might have been slightly worse than usual, possibly because of endomitriosis. However, the cup is so convenient in so many ways that I will try it for a couple of months more before I make up my mind.

– The stem still presses against the outer skin from time to time. But I’m learning to “pull in” my muscles every time after I insert it, and then the cup moves slightly higher into the vagina and I can’t feel it anymore.

Some of the things I love about my new menstrual management method 🙂 …

– I had very few stained panties (less than pads; MUCH less than tampons) – and zero leaks will probably be a reality in a month or two, as I get the hang of it!

– I only needed to empty my cup twice a day (leaving it in 10-12 hours with no problems)

– I never ever have to carry anything into the bathroom with me! Even in the bathroom stalls on campus, I don’t need a water bottle. A quick wipe with a piece of toilet paper works fine. And in any case, I can leave the cup in for so long that I hardly need to change it in a public place; I can always wait til I go home.

– I can now call my menstrual management method 100% environmentally friendly! No more of my smelly plastic pads on the rubbish tips!

– No more expenditure! If I spent R25 per period before I bought my Miacup, my investment will start paying off by age 26 and a half. Even if I only then use it for another 4 years (before I have children and/or switch to the type B menstrual cup), I will save R1200 on menstrual product expenditure.

(I think it would be a good idea for 2 or 3 women who are considering a Miacup to buy it together and each try it for one cycle, simply sterilising it in boiling water before use. That way they can make an informed decision, and as long as one of them decides to continue using it and buys the others’ shares out, then they’re sorted.)

– I have learned so much about my body. This might be one of the best bits for this curious young woman!

 

So… if you’re curious about menstrual cups and you want to hear about my experience, comment and ask any questions you got!

Ouch! Perceived intensified period pain…

1 Apr

I’ve always had quite a bit of period pain. The kind that has you pale and breathless and unable to stand for a couple of hours and unable to concentrate for a day or so, if you don’t take painkillers. But with strong over-the-counter painkillers, it’s fine

This month, my first month with my Miacup, has been pretty painful, and especially, painful for longer than I remember from the past. Instead of a day, it has been more like 36 hours. Ow.

Also, upon initial insertion of the Miacup, the pain momentarily intensified. And 36 hours on, the pain is not bad enough to take painkillers, but it remains there. Also, my digestive system seems unhappy to have to move around the larger-than-usual vagina.

The Miacup is working beautifully in terms of efficiency and neatness (still only that one stain!) and it’s great only having to empty it every 10-12 hours. But I’m a bit concerned that my  endomitriosis might be the reason the period pain intensified when I inserted it, and why the pain is lasting longer.

Endomitriosis entails little bits of womb in places outside the womb… maybe these bits, which are always swollen/trying to get out during one’s period, are being squashed into the sides of other organs or something.

So, I’ve chickened out for one night. I’m weairing a pad tonight. We’ll do the Miacup again tomorrow, because it would be awesome to leave it in as I go through my hectic day. By then the pain should really be gone too.