Without delving into the embedded patriarcal society in which we all live, it most definitely has led to the stigma involved with all things menstruation. Most men don’t even understand the basic principle of a period: being the ejected blood, mucus and tissue by the uterus, materials it was preparing ready to fertilize an egg, but when the ovum isn’t fertilised, this is all expelled through the cervix.
So it’s really no surprise that not much research has historically been done into how to manage this monthly flow. It wasn’t really until toxic shock syndrome hit the headlines in the 80s that women started to look for an alternative to those disposable products like tampons.
What is a menstrual cup?
Which is where the menstral cup, or diva cup, comes into play. Unlike a tampon or a pad which are designed to soak up period blood, a menstrual cup ‘catches’ it. And while there is now a wide range of these cups on the market, the Fun Cup just might be the best option out there.
Designed and manufactured by those brilliant Germans at Fun Factory, home of some of your favourite sex toys, the Fun Cup is their innovative entry into this growing market. The Fun Cup is a 100% medical grade silicone and is a far better design than all those others, that haven’t changed their design since the 90s!
Why use a menstrual cup?
While tampons can dry you out and cause micro-tears, leaving you more susceptible to infection, the Fun Cup is gentle on your skin and great for your well-being. A menstrual cup can hold 4-6 times the amount of a tampon, and once cleaned, is reusable for years to come. As such, the Fun Cup is a lot more eco-friendly than disposable products, and better for the environment is better for everyone. Given the expense of disposable products, the Fun Cup will pay for itself within about six months, and saving money is always a good thing (more money to spend on toys!).
Choosing the right menstrual cup
There are a few important things to keep in mind about finding the right menstrual cup (since it can be worn for around ten hours, it wants to be comfortable). Menstrual cups should sit snugly within the vaginal canal, just below the cervix. However if it is touching the cervix, it can be dislodged, which is going to be both uncomfortable and messy, and means your menstrual cup doesn’t fit properly.
This is why, with the Fun Cup Explore Kit, there is one of each of their two sizes included, Size A and Size B. Size A is 5.3cm long with a 4cm diameter and holds 20 ml and is great for those with a lighter flow or those with a shallower vaginal canal. The larger Size B, 5.8cm long, 4.3cm diameter and holding 30 ml, is better suited to those with a longer vaginial canal or during a heavy flow.
The Fun Cup has also been designed to better fit your anatomy, as well as provide greater comfort and leakage protection. Most menstrual cups also have that pokey tail hanging beneath the bell shape, while the Fun Cup has a tapered tip with small grooves to better get a grip on it for removal.
This is where most people hesitate about the idea of using a menstrual cup. There’s a bit of a learning curve to inserting a menstrual cup, but you’ll have it mastered in no time.
Inserting your Fun Cup
Start by sitting on the toilet with your legs apart, or standing with one leg propped up. Fold your cup, either with a C-fold or a punch-fold, and insert into your vagina, scooping it back towards your spine. If you’re having a lighter period, or to make things easier, apply a little water based lubricant to the cup. Once inserted, release the cup, and it will unfold inside you. By bearing down with your muscles and twisting the cup back and forth, you’ll create a seal. Give a gentle tug to ensure it is secure.
Removing your Fun Cup
You can either reach in and press the tip of your cup with your finger, or alternatively bare down with your muscles and pinch the tip. Gently pull the cup out and tip its contents down the toilet, or down the drain if you’re in the shower.
This whole tipping out the contents is where some women feel they want to turn their noses up at diva cups, but at the same time, many women enjoy the fact that they can keep a better eye on how things are going.
Cleaning your Fun Cup
With a mild unscented soap, rinse and wash out your cup before reinserting it, or storing it in the included antimicrobial Tyvek bag. If you’re on the go and emptying your cup in a cubicle, just wipe it out with some toilet paper before reinserting it.
If you’d like to keep your cup extra clean between periods, boil it for three minutes, allow it to dry before returning it to your Tyvek bag. The fun cup is available at the adultlifestyle sex toy stores Sydney.