Published on May 21, 2024 at 13:55 / Updated on May 23, 2024 at 14:11

The number of eco-friendly products on the market has been growing steadily for several years, and reusable menstrual hygiene products are no exception. There are three types of reusable feminine hygiene products: washable pads, menstrual pants and, without doubt, the most popular, the menstrual cup. This reusable option is one of the innovative solutions that offer affordable comfort—all while reducing the amount of waste generated over a woman's lifetime. However, proper care is essential to reap the full benefits and ensure safe, hygienic use.

Discover our practical tips on how to care for your menstrual cup in the best possible way and extend the product's life. It will undoubtedly change the way you think about managing your menstrual cycles.

Cleaning menstrual cups in public places

One of the advantages of the menstrual cup is its ability to hold a certain amount of liquid without having to be constantly emptied or changed, as is the case with tampons or sanitary napkins, for example.  Often perceived as the black sheep of menstrual products by most women, the fact that it has to be emptied and cleaned when they are away from home can seem like a disadvantage to some. However, rest assured, if your flow is "regular," you'll only need to empty it twice a day at home, i.e. when you get up in the morning and at the end of the day in the evening. If, however, your flow is very abundant, you may need to empty it during the day. 

Ideally, if you're away from home, it's best to find a toilet that also contains a sink in the stall so you can rinse and clean it before re-inserting it. However, this can be challenging to find, so here are a few tips to save you from leaving the public toilet stall to wash your cup in the sink! In fact, the cup doesn't need to be perfectly clean every time since the silicone the cup is made of is a very hygienic material produced for this kind of use. So you don't have to worry about the cup or your health! So, here's how to clean it in a public toilet without a sink:

  1. Clean your hands before entering the cabin.
  2. Once the cup has been emptied into the toilet, take some toilet paper and wipe the outside of it.
  3. Then, wipe the inside of the cup clean and replace it.
  4. When you return home, you should rinse and clean the cup, as it must be rinsed twice daily. 

And at home?

At home, it's easy! When you empty your menstrual cup, rinse it quickly under running water with a drop of soap and put it back in. It's important to choose a mild hand or body soap. The trick is to use very little. If your sink isn't close to the toilet, you should leave the cup on the vanity before washing or putting it back on, by placing it on a tissue or piece of toilet paper.

Do not forget to sterilize your menstrual cup

It is also essential to wash and "sterilize" your menstrual cup occasionally. Some say at the end of each period; others say every three months. Your menstrual cup must be properly cleaned and disinfected to maximize its lifespan. The best and easiest technique is to boil it in water. The method is relatively simple: boil water in a saucepan and place the cup in the boiling water (leaving the ring on). Leave it in the boiling water for around five minutes, then remove it. It's very important to keep an eye on the menstrual cup while it's soaking. Ensure it doesn't sink to the bottom or catch on the sides of the pan. Move it, if necessary, with a whisk or spoon. Moving water should keep it on the surface, but it's best to stay close by and intervene if necessary.

Sterilizing does not mean cleaning it in any way to disinfect it. For example, don't clean it in the dishwasher or with hand sanitizer. Don’t soak it in vinegar or baking soda, or even add bleach to the boiling water! These ideas could not only cause you trouble but also shorten the life of your menstrual cup.

How long can I keep my menstrual cup?

So that your menstrual cup lasts as long as you want it to, store it in its little cloth bag between periods, not in a plastic bag. How long should you actually keep it? The answer is very positive since you can keep it for up to 10 years! However, you may need to change it before then. Regularly, you should take a look at the cup to make sure there are no signs of deterioration, e.g. if it cracks, becomes sticky, develops an odour, etc. If any of these situations arise, you should, of course, dispose of it. But don't be fooled: a different colour from the cut is not a sign of deterioration; it's perfectly normal. Ultimately, the lifespan of your menstrual cup depends on several factors, such as how often you clean it, the type of soap you use, your body's natural pH, and so on.

In sum, if the upkeep of a menstrual cup was your obstacle to potentially opting for this solution for your menstruation, caring for it is not rocket science at all. At the end of the day, you’ll save time and money with a solution that's not only good for the environment but also for your health!

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