I love being a woman, yet once a month, due to the nature of my gender, I go, “Urrgggghhh.” Well, not always. Sometimes I say “Oh, thank goodness.” But that gratitude usually only lasts a second and then I’m reminded of what I have to go through the next few days, so it’s usually followed by, “Urrggghhh.” Anyhow, we girls all dread that time of month. Some of us get backaches or cramps or migraines or tampon discomfort or even just plain feeling gross…whatever it is, we’re never 100% ourselves.
The only time I’ve ever kind of wish I got my period was when during my pre-pubescent days because some of the girls in my class had theirs and talked about it in hushed voices, and I wanted to know what the fuss was about. I bet many of us ladies felt that way. Don’t we all feel silly now? And so began our journey of pads, pantyliners and tampons.
About 4 years ago, I had asked a friend of mine for a spare tampon and she said she didn’t have any and that she doesn’t even use them anymore. Questions ensued and that was my first lesson on the Diva Cup. The lesson left my as curious as I was before I got my first period and again, I wanted to know what the fuss was about! So I researched it, bought one for myself, and never went back.
Oh by the way, the Diva Cup is a brand name and they make menstrual cups. There are other brands out there (some come in colours!), but since I’ve only ever been on this brand, I’ll refer to my menstrual cup as the Diva Cup. And at the risk of me sounding like a brand ambassador (which I am not), it really did change my life and I will list the reasons why I switched sides:
The Diva Cup is even more comfortable than regular tampons or sanitary pads. They’re made out of silicone, and you don’t really feel it in there. Honestly, sometimes I forget I’m on my period. I found that I could usually “feel” tampons inside me sometimes, especially the more absorbent kinds. And though using the smaller ones like the O.B. brand helped, I’d be changing them more frequently in the day, which brings me to my next point.
Since you can wear your cup up to 12-hours, that means you only need to deal with it 2-3 times a day! You can now avoid the awkward situations at work with male colleagues such as, “I thought you were going to the washroom? Why are you bringing your purse? Where are you really going?”
3) Environmentally Friendly
The Diva Cup is made to be used over and over again. Less waste! To keep it clean, you could get the wash they sell, but I find that antibacterial soap and water works just fine.
4) Cost Savings
Since they’re reusable, it will save you money in the long run. So let’s do the math for tampons. A funny side note here – my fiancé, after hearing me count out loud, jumped in right away to solve the math since he
is a huge nerd that does math quizzes in his spare time for fun likes being helpful. What was funny about it was that he said things like, “Each tampon would cost about 20 cents, unless you get a good deal. You should mention this is the drugstore price because you could definitely get it at Costco for much less.” He then proceeded to google the prices and complain about how much they charged for tampons. How often do you hear a guy complain about tampons? Like I said, funny. Anyway, a mid-range tampon costs roughly $0.20 from the drugstore and this is the formula I used:
$0.20 x (times a day changed) x (days) x 12 months = (what you spend on tampons a year).
So a regular-ish type cycle would be:
$ 0.20 x 5 x 5 =$5 per cycle x 12 = $60 a year
And that’s not including liners, if you use them. The Diva Cup is $40 and lasts for years and if you wanted to be wasteful, you could even get a new one every Christmas and still save money.
I almost didn’t want to talk about this because it’s gross, but since this post is on periods I figured ah well, what the heck? Though I don’t really know what to say about it except that it smells better because the odour is captured within the cup. So you don’t get that stale blood smell.
Diva Cup also has a great FAQ page that answers some questions you might have. Tomorrow, I’ll talk about the transition into it, the downsides and some tips I have for using it. Oh, and I got mine at the London Drugs here in Canada.
And next up, the transition, tips and the downsides to the Diva Cup. Also recently I wrote an article on cleaning the diva cup here.