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Cherrelle Slaney
Cherrelle Slaney's hand painted with black nail polish holding a Mooncup menstrual cup.

12 Essential Things You Should Know About Moocup

The Mooncup menstrual cup is by far one of my favourite period products. Here are the 12 most common questions I get asked.

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12 Essential Things You Should Know About Moocup

I feel like I’ve just kinda become known as The Menstrual Cup Lady amongst my Instagram followers since I’m always banging on about my favourite period product, the Mooncup. The amount of DM’s I get to say “what is a moon cup?” or “how do I use one?” is unreal. I love that you guys all come to me with your period cup queries, so to make things easier I decided to write a post on the most common Mooncup questions I get asked.

What is a Mooncup menstrual cup?

Let’s start with the basics. A Mooncup is a soft, silicone, funnel-shaped menstrual cup which is inserted into the vagina to collect your period blood, similar to the way you insert a tampon. Note: while the Mooncup is similar in that it is worn internally, really it’s nothing like a tampon. In my opinion it’s much, much better.

Menstrual Cup Benefits

The Mooncup is reusable, which means it’s saving an awful lot of menstrual waste from entering our landfills and oceans. In fact, one Mooncup can save up to 11,000 tonnes of waste. So, there’s a pretty good environmental argument for switching to a menstrual cup from disposable period products.

Aside from this, there’s also the economical argument. How much do you spend on tampons and pads each month? It adds up, right? The Mooncup has a price tag of around £21 – and I know that is a lot more than you would spend on tampons and pads in a month, but the Mooncup can be reused over and over again. In fact, the Mooncup can last for up to 10 years if looked after correctly, which gives you an average cost of 16p per period.

How long does a menstrual cup last?

The Mooncup is reusable, and if looked after properly it can last for up to 10 years. That’s a whole lot of money saved and a lot less menstrual waste going to landfill. It’s a win-win for your purse and the planet.

What size should I choose?

Mooncup comes in two sizes. Size A and size B. According to the Mooncup website you should opt for size A if you are 30 and over OR have given birth vaginally whatever your age, and you should opt for size B if you are under 30 and have not given birth vaginally.

How to insert a menstrual cup

The process is fairly similar to how you would insert a tampon, with a few extra steps. Haul your leg up onto the toilet seat or the side of the bath. Then, you fold the cup in half so the top ring of the cup looks kinda like a “C” shape. Then simply insert it into the vagina and it will pop open inside of you. This creates a vacuum seal so it won’t leak.

How to fold a menstrual cup

If the “C” fold isnt working out for you, here are several other ways to fold a menstrual cup. Click here to see Mooncup’s folding guide.

How long can you wear a menstrual cup?

Mooncup recommend 8hrs of wear based on their research into menstrual hygiene. Most other cup brands say you can wear for 12hrs. So what’s the difference?

I got in touch with Sophia Jordan, a Mooncup Advisor, to ask why. Sophia told me “our recommendation to empty and rinse the Mooncup menstrual cup every 4-8 hours is based upon safe practise for users, as opposed to the capacity or potential performance of the Mooncup® vs. other menstrual cup brands. This recommendation is for safety and hygiene reasons – to prevent the potential build-up of bacteria or odour.”

How to remove a menstrual cup

To get the cup out, you should pinch the bottom of it to break the seal, then wiggle it from side to side while pulling down gently. It should not hurt or create a tugging sensation. Breaking the seal before you start to move the cup is really important.

How clean a menstrual cup

To empty the Mooncup you simply remove it and pour the contents down the toilet. You then need to rinse with water. You can use an unscented soap if you wish, but be sure to rinse very, very thoroughly if you choose this option as it can cause irritation in your vagina if not rinsed well.

When your period is over you can sterilise the Mooncup ready for your next period by boiling it in water for 5-7 minutes. You can also sterilise by using a sterilising tablet or solution (the kind you would use for sterilising baby bottles). Milton is the most common brand of this type of sterilising method, but other brands will work fine too.

Can I cut the stem on my mooncup?

The Mooncup has a stem which is about 1 inch long. You can use this to easily locate your Mooncup. However, some people find this stem to be uncomfortable (I’m one of those). The stem has little increments marked out on it, so you can trim the stem to a length that is suitable and comfortable for you. I personally chopped the whole thing off which made it waaaayy more comfortable.

My menstrual cup is stuck

First of all, remain calm. The Mooncup can’t go anywhere once it’s inside you. It’s in there somewhere and you WILL get it back out. Insert you forefinger and thumb into your vagina until you feel the bottom of the Mooncup, pinch and remove. If it’s easier, you can use one finger and run it up the side of the Mooncup to break the seal. Hooking your finger over the top of the cup can help to pull it down.

If this doesn’t work and you’re really in a pickle, you can call the Mooncup team on+44 (0)1273 673845 and they will be able to help you.

How do I clean my cup in a public toilet?

There may not always be a sink at your disposal when you empty your Mooncup. This is especially common for those who use a toilet with a communal sink area at work. Fear not, you still have some options here.

The first option is to wipe your cup with some toilet paper before you re-insert. I’m not a huge fan of doing this, but I have done it on occasion when I’ve been caught short.

Alternatively you could take some bottled water into the toilet with you. Use this to rinse the cup over the toilet and re-insert. This is my preferred method of cleaning when a private sink ins’t available.

Remember though, you can wear a Mooncup for 8 hours, so you may not need to change it while you’re away from home anyway.

the menstrual cycle quiz

Each phase of your menstrual cycle can tell you something different about yourself. Not sure what phase you’re in?