Monday, April 6, 2009

Lets do a product review: The Diva Cup

I recently made the switch from tampons/cloth menstrual pads to The Diva Cup coupled with cloth menstrual pads.
If you are considering The Diva Cup, let me share my experience with you.

*What Leaks? My flow is a rush, I leak onto everything after about an hour. With the Diva Cup, that worry is almost completely gone. It does leak, but hardly. I have a very lightweight cloth menstrual pad as a back up on heavy days. I can sleep through the night and wake up with clean sheets (<3).

*I find it very comfortable once its in. Some women have to cut the stem some, but I left is as is and forget completely that its there at all. (Thats saying a lot, because I am very small - 4 ft 11 in- and my Vagina is proportional).

*Saving some green! Both environmentally and fiscally. I got mine online for $17. I haven't purchased emergency tampons/pads since.

*Its so convenient! With tampons I used to have to fill my purse with them every morning. With the cup, I leave home with it in and return home with it in, no restocking (or forgetting to re-stock).

*Can I say it? I love my period! Washing your cup rather than throwing your used tampon away really changes the way you perceive menstruation. Its no longer garbage, no longer something you throw away. For me, using the Diva Cup + cloth menstrual pads is a way of honoring myself,my body, and serves as a way for me to celebrate my womanhood.

*No risk of Toxic Shock Syndrome!

*Hypoallergenic! Im allergic to latex, certain ingredients in lubricant, so and an so on (my Vagina is picky. She is a Goddess, after all). I have no problem with the silicon Diva Cup.

*How the hell do I put this thing in? Eventually you will get the hang of it, but for your first and second cycle expect it to take a few tries.

*Menstrual blood has a very strong odor and it can be hard to get rid of. This is easily taken care of with Diva Wash. I find it works much better than soap in this particular instance.

*Suction + Horrible Cramping=Bad. When you put the Diva Cup in it seals itself in with light suction (really, its not bad at all). For me on the first day of my period Im on pain killers the pain is so bad, and on that day even dealing with the light suction can be horribly painful. That said, on regular days when I have bad cramping (not horrible) I don't really notice it.

All in all: A+. I LOVE my Diva Cup and plan to make the switch permanent.


Nina said...

I have the Keeper, which is the acorn colored version of the Divs Cup. I got it a LONG time ago at Whole Foods. I LOVE IT! I've been using it for about 1.5 years now and I will NEVER go back to tampons.

It hasn't all been roses. The first time I used it I accidentally gave myself a UTI because I couldn't get it in properly without making a bloody mess. (Pun intended). After that is was smooth sailing.

It's funny, I actually stopped having cramps all together after I started using this. It is a goddess send and it really does change the way you think about menstruation. Thanks for this post!!

Vulva said...

Great point, Nina. I was lucky enough to avoid the UTI.
The bloody mess came with the territory, and I was ok with that. ;)
If anyone else has an experience to share that would be helpful to women considering the keeper/diva cup, by all means share!
*Hands over soapbox*

Karmaeleon said...

I am using the Mooncup which, I think, is the English version of the same thing. It came with a rather long stem, and I had to cut it back almost completely before it stopped stabbing me, but after that, it was fine. I also had the cramps problem, only last time, I didn't :) so it might not be the cup at all causing them.

A few tips (I've been using it over 2 years now):

(*) Try it out a couple of times before you get your period - also to make sure the stem doesn't hurt you.

(*) I always make sure it is wet when I insert it - I don't dry it off after washing (I use soap, I didn't find a stong smell with mine!). It'll slide in like a breeze!

(*) fold it in two before inserting - it will unfold once inside and put itself snugly around the sides

(*) if you find it did not unfold properly, reach in with two fingers and give it a slight twist, and it will happen for sure!

(*) to take it out, also use the twist technique: it will lessen the suction pull (maybe you can even squeeze the bottom of your cup a little, but only if it isn't too full - you should make sure it does not get too full anyway)

(*) between periods, sterilise it by boiling it in water for at least half an hour!

I love my cup and I take good care of it - if you do, it is a safe, hygienic, and environmentally friendly product that will last you a long time and save you a lot of money!

With much love

Nina said...

I use a vinegar and water solution to clean mine. Use one part vinegar to ten parts water. It is less abrasive on the latex than soaps.

When changing in public (my least fav part) and you don't have the use of a sink, I take in one dry paper towel and two damp one. I use the one damp one to wipe the cup and the other damp one to wipe my hands. I dry it with dry one then wrap the whole thing in the dry one. Makes the toss a bit more discreet. Then, of course, I scrub out. The directions say you can just pee on it to clean it, but I'm not too keen on that idea.

Karmaeleon said...

Nina, unfortunately, vinegar is the only thing that dissolves silicone (and it does weird things to latex too). Even vapours apparently, not even the direct contact (I looked it up and found lots of warnings / usages around, including using vinegar to clean silicone off places). Of course the solution you use might be fine in that respect (as in not attacking the material) - but will it be strong enough to do the disinfecting? (just wondering...)

Great tip about the damp towels in sinkless environments! By the way, pee is sterile (unless you have an infection already) until the moment it hits the outside world, and for the first few moments, it will only be the organisms you already have on you anyway, so it would not actually harm you... ;)

Vulva said...

Simone, how easy is it for you to twist? I grab the base of the stem and try to twist and I can never seem to make it happen the way I want it to.

Karmaeleon said...

Ah I grab the base of the cup itself, not the stem, and then it twists rather easily. But then remember, I had to cut off my stem almost entirely anyway...

CUNTastic said...

im currently using MoonPads, and considering using a diva cup (or some variation) too. really just waiting until the bookstore i own gets a wholesale order in. in addition to all the obvious benefits that've been mentioned already, im also really excited about the idea of the cup catching the blood, so i can use it to water plants. i have a friend who's been doing this for years, and she says she has one plant that even turns a little red on the leaves when she moon-waters it. hehe : )

Vulva said...

My CUNTastic friend, that is a brilliant idea. Thanks for sharing!
Simone, I'll try grabbing the base of the cup next time. Thanks!

madame yoshino said...

Thank you! I really need to try this.

me said...

I also love my moon cup. Washing and deodorizing is best done with a 1:4 dilution of hydrogen peroxide:water. Just leave it in overnight once your period is over and it takes away staining (the hydrogen peroxide lyses red blood cells that cause the staining), sterilizes it pretty well, and removes any odor. Hydrogen peroxide sprayed onto reusable pads also gets out blood stains as a pretreatment prior to washing.