I was going to come up with some witty explanation of why you should leave if talking about the menstrual cycle grosses you out, but I'm not. It's a part of life and I'm not apologizing for it. There are too many stigmas behind womanly processes and frankly, they shouldn't exist. I'm tired of this hush-hush, apologetic society when it comes to us talking about our periods. So, as nicely as I mean this....get over it.
They are stressful, uncomfortable, and produce so....much....waste. Even thinking about it fills most of us with abhorrence. What if it didn't have to be so bad? What if there was a way to make that favorite week of the month a little healthier for us and healthier for the environment at the same time? After doing some research for reusable alternatives, I quickly came across the menstrual cup. I had discovered this product before a few years ago when I was looking for alternatives to tampons for a week long hiking trip. I assumed, with my luck, our hiking adventure would land right on that wonderful week so I needed something that would be low maintenance and zero waste. Sadly, we never ended up taking that trip and I never invested in that alternative. Well menstrual cup, we meet again. This time, I purchased one.
You're probably thinking to yourself, "what the heck is a menstrual cup? That sounds unorthodox and just plain weird!" I seriously thought the same thing. Like how am I going to use this? Will it fall out? Will it leak? Will it cause me to walk funny? After using it, I found that it did none of those things. In fact, it was a complete life changer and here are the reasons why I think you should use one too.
IT CAN STAY IN FOR UP TO 12 HOURS
I was pretty unsure of how the day would unfold the first time I tried one. I just knew it would end up in some sort of catastrophe. Surprisingly enough, that first day was fantastic. No leaks, no funny walking, and no discomfort. I had actually almost forgotten I was wearing it. I didn't have to worry about changing it throughout the day like you do with tampons and pads. It was the most stress free, first-day-of-my-period I've ever had. I inserted it in the morning before I went to work and cleaned it when I took my nightly shower. Unlike tampons, there's absolutely no risk of toxic shock and can be left in for up to 12 hours.
Here's how they work...
1. Relax - relax - relax
2. Fold the cup for easy insertion
3.Gently insert - I'm using a champagne glass as a model.
4. Once inserted, turn the cup a full 360 so that the seal is formed, then rock on with your stress free day!
5. Relax and remove at a slight angle to release suction. This is important to prevent discomfort during removal.
LESS WASTE GOES TO THE LANDFILLS
When I began evaluating trash in the bathroom, I found that during my period I was emptying the trash can at least 3-4 times in just one week! That's pretty disgusting. An average woman is expected to produce 62,415 pounds of garbage during her fertile years which is about 0.5% of yearly landfill waste. With the proper care, menstrual cups could last you up to 10 years or even longer!
YOUR BODY ISN'T ABSORBING TOXIC CHEMICALS
Knowing that my body isn't absorbing the harmful chemicals that tampons are made with is relieving. Since tampons are made of cotton, they more than likely contain the pesticides that are used in cultivating the crop. I doubt most of us were buying organic cotton tampons to begin with. Pesticides can most definitely stay away from my hoo-haa. And let's not forget about chlorine bleach. How do you think those tampons get their white appearance? Because are skin is a semi-permeable membrane, the chemicals we put on them is worse than us ingesting them. Don't think that pads are any better. Conventional sanitary pads can contain the equivalent of about four plastic bags. We know that the chemicals that are found in plastics have been linked to disruptive embryonic development, heart disease, and even cancer.
YOU SAVE MONEY
And let's not forget to talk about how much money you'll save when you switch to a more sustainable lady-time product! Think about how much money you spend on period products now. $3-4 per month x 12 months = $36-48 per year x about 37 years worth of cycles = $1332-1776. And this is just tampons. That compared to the roughly $120 worth of cups in your lifetime if you purchased a new one every 10 years. I don't know about you, but I love saving money. Long term, short term, doesn't matter to me.
How has a menstrual cup lowered my stress?
- I don't have to worry about running to the store every time I think Aunt Flow is knocking at my door.
- I don't have to constantly run to the bathroom to change it throughout my already crazy work days.
- I don't have to worry about leakage.
- I don't have to worry about that dumb string sticking out which can become rather disgusting quickly and embarrassing if you're at the pool.
- I don't have to worry about vaginal dryness or ulcerations.
I know a lot of us have these concerns and stressors that come with our mensies. I truly love these things! I wouldn't write a Menstrual Novella explaining why they are pretty freaking fabulous if I didn't think everyone would benefit from one. So, please, consider it! Check out Menstrual Cup Reviews for more information about the various brands and where you can find the perfect one for you!
|Source: Glad Rags|
I also know menstrual cups are not for everyone. Reusable cotton sanitary pads are very popular. They are available for purchase by many online companies and there are several easy to follow DIYs that show you how to make your own. You can also opt for organic tampons without the plastic applicator. Though they still produce waste, they produce considerably less.
Have questions about menstrual cups? Don't hesitate to leave your question in the comments section or shoot me an email!