If you are subject to sudden boughts of extreme cringiness or you happen to know me in real life then I'll apologise in advance for this TMI Review of...
Like every other woman on the planet, I bloody hate my period (pun intended). It hurts, it always comes when I don't want it to, and I've yet to find a way to say "I'm staying at home to cry and bleed" to my boss without getting the sack. The worst part (and sorry again to those of you who know me in real life) is the awkward desk to office bathroom dash with a secret tampie stuck down your bra, or the "FUCKING EW" part that comes when you need to change a sanitary pad in a meeting (not DURING the meeting of course. I should make it clear that I don't do that).
A couple of friends had been preaching to me about The Mooncup, along with other menstrual cups. I did my research, watched a few YouTube videos and was immediately turned off by the idea because I'm quite a squeamish person and this seemed a bit hippy to me. I didn't like the idea of having 'a cup' that I would need to change, especially when thinking about my desk job and using a public bathroom. It just doesn't seem practical, right?
The reality, having bought one mainly out of curiosity, is actually much simpler than you would think.
ABOUT THE MOONCUP
The Mooncup is made from super soft medical grade silicon. It is flexible and not rigid at all. It is free of latex (for those of you who might be allergic) and contains no dyes or bleaches. It's about 2 inches long and comes in different sizes. The size difference is because there is one for women who haven't given birth, and one for women who have. You can use it whilst your exercising (including swimming!) and also when travelling. In fact it's perfect for travelling because you can go 8 hours without needing to remove it, which also makes it perfectly suited to us gals who work in an office!
A Mooncup is capable of collecting 3 times as much as a regular tampon and removes a number of health issues associated with tampon usage (3 words- pee, string, wet). It also reduces the risks associated with TSS (Toxic Shock Syndrome) because it doesn't absorb fluid and then store it against your skin. An added bonus is that it's reusable so it is good for the environment and for your bank balance. Mooncup claim that the average woman uses 11,000 tampons in her life. A regular box of 20 tampons costs £2.75. That is equal to over £1500 across your lifetime! THINK OF ALL THE SHOES THAT WOULD BUY! I paid £19.99 for my Mooncup. Bargain.
I am totally convinced and converted. I don't use it solidly from hour 1 of my period to the bitter ending minutes, but I find it useful for the few days in the middle. I have been using it for around 5 months now and have never ever experienced even the slightest bit of 'leakage'. I usually change mine in the shower, but only because I find it easier and cleaner. It's easy to wash and to keep clean and it's really simple and totally pain free to use. The Mooncup itself comes in a little box with a woven bag for storage which means it can be stored very discretely in a bathroom cupboard. It also comes with a little booklet full of information and usage instructions.
My advice to Mooncup Virgins would be to just get involved. Give it a try. Nothing bad can come of it (a Mooncup can't get stuck or lost inside you or anything, like a tampon can!) and £20 is a small investment to make in something that could save you so much money and awkwardness. There is a really comprehensive list of Q&As on the Mooncup website; I started out by reading through those for reassurance and would encourage you to do the same. I'd love to hear how you get on so comment below with your experiences!