If you are particularly squeamish about periods then I’d suggest this post is not for you. I’d also suggest that you grow up… it is a simple biological fact that once reaching puberty, women menstruate, which is an essential part of the body’s process that allows women to mother children. Much like women all over the world, I am sick and tired of being made to feel embarrassed by my period; I am a woman, and I bleed. Get over it or get off of this blog post – it only gets worse.
Anyway, having heard nothing but good reviews, I recently tried an alternative form of period product, the menstrual cup, and I decided to review it for anyone who may be considering swapping to this latest trend. Recommended by several friends and mutuals, I went to the local pharmacy and bought the Lunette ‘reusable menstrual cup’, at which point the kind girl behind the till gave me a reassuring smile and informed me that she’s been using one for a few months and would never go back to tampons or sanitary pads. The Lunette comes in 2 sizes and a range of different colours so we can jazz up our vaginas on a monthly basis! Feeling encouraged, I paid my $49 and went on my way, anticipating my next period somewhat eagerly. That came and passed, and I can proudly say I am converted, and endeavour to provide the nitty gritty details in order that other girls may also come to the decision to use a Lunette or similar product.
I would recommend anyone new to menstrual cups to practice a ‘dry run’ prior to your period, so that you can become accustomed to the method (very well illustrated on the instructions) before you actually need to use it properly, as this can make it a lot easier. That said, it really isn’t as difficult or as daunting as you might think, hardly more effort than inserting a tampon and personally it was less noticeable throughout the day. Not only this but they can be left in for up to 12 hours, which means you can go about your normal life without having to even think about your period and can leave it in overnight. Removing and cleaning the lunette was somewhat difficult the first time, and was admittedly a strange experience; the cups come with a short stem that you can used to grasp it, but the easiest (and recommended) removal method is to pinch the bottom of the cup slightly to break the suction. Originally, I was somewhat disgusted by having to empty and clean out the cup, but by the second day not only was it quick and easy to remove, but I had gotten over my initial repulsion, plus a Lunette allows you to monitor exactly how much blood you are losing, which is probably a lot less than you may think. One downfall perhaps would be that using the lunette in public toilets was a minor issue, which I overcame by using disabled toilets when absolutely necessary. However, because you can leave the product in safely for such an extensive period (if you’ll excuse the pun), it is unlikely that you will need to empty it in public. It should also be noted that it is possible to urinate (etc.) without having to remove the Lunette and that, provided you clean it properly using wipes and boiling water, the risk of toxic shock is significantly lowered.
An economical option for menstruation, the Lunette menstrual cup only cost $49 AUD, around £26, which is the average cost of approximately 200 tampons. When you consider that the average woman will require 20-30 tampons per cycle, within less than 10 cycles you’ve earned your money back! Yes, the tampon tax may have finally been axed, but it doesn’t mean that the costs of sanitary products – as well as ibuprofen, chocolate, and all of the other stereotypical period essentials – don’t rack up. In this sense, menstrual cups can be viewed as a possible solution to period poverty, where over 2.3 million people globally do not have access to basic sanitation, let alone pads and tampons to allow them to survive their periods comfortably. This has a resounding effect on young women, in particular in poorer parts of the world, where many girls will be forced to miss out on significant amounts of their education once they hit puberty. Through interacting with the menstrual cup industry, I was made aware of the charities undertaking amazing work to combat not just the practical period poverty problem, but the stigma surrounding periods.
Another huge benefit of the menstrual cup – probably the one that catalysed my personal desire to buy one – is the sustainability of such products. They can be reused for YEARS, and are zero waste products, much unlike other single-use sanitary product options that often come in extensive packaging. Yet most astonishing of all: I did not ruin a SINGLE pair of pants. If there are any men still reading, apologies, but this is a very serious issue that us ladies have to deal with on a monthly basis – don’t wear your nice new undies during that time of the month or you may not be wearing them again, ever.
Essentially, I could not recommend menstrual cups, in particular the Lunette, more highly – and no, this is not a sponsored post. Not only will they help you save to money, but also the planet. What a bloody good invention!