Everything You Need to Know About Using Menstrual Cups

What is a Menstrual Cup?

A menstrual cup is a small funnel-shaped cup that can made from either rubber or silicone, and is designed to collect your menstrual blood rather than absorb it like tampons and pads. There are various shapes, levels of softness and sizes available. Depending on your flow and the size of your cup, they can last up to 12 hours between emptying.

Interesting Fact: Menstrual cups have actually been around in some form since the 1800s

Why Are Menstrual Cups Better than Tampons and Pads? 

Menstrual cups are an eco-friendly alternative to disposable sanitary products, such as tampons and pads. Some menstrual cups, like ours in the CupIT™ Menstrual Kit, are designed to last up to 10 years - which means huge savings over time. Menstrual cups are also a lot friendlier to your natural vaginal flora, whereas traditional tampons and pads contain toxins and chemicals, and the fibres can dry out your vagina. One study showed that those that are scented can be made from up to 3,900 chemicals. 

Only emptying your cup every 12 hours is a massive time saver as well. Tampons need to be changed every four to eight hours, depending on your flow.

Did You Know? Tampons that are flushed down the toilet can end up in the ocean when our sewer systems fail, and due to all that plastic, these products can take centuries to biodegrade. In Europe, period products are the fifth most common item to be found on beaches! 

What Size Menstrual Cup Do I Need?

The size of menstrual cup you need depends on the height of your cervix. If you've given birth, you might need a larger size. 

We found that this was one of the biggest obstacles preventing women from making the swap, which iis why we decided to include both a small and a medium CupIT with our Menstrual Kit so women had the choice. Some found that they preferred one size at the beginning of their period and the other towards the end of their period. So we have taken away the guess work for you.

How to Use a Menstrual Cup

To use a menstrual cup, you need to sterilise it before the first use. This is to make sure it is safe to be inserted into your vagina. Once done, check your cup to ensure the 4 holes at the top are open. These are designed to help break the suction when you remove it. We also suggest that you wet the cup with a little water or water-based lube the first few times to make it easier to insert.

There are several fold techniques to insert your menstrual cup. The two that we recommend are the ‘U’ fold and the ‘Push Down’ fold. 

how to use a menstrual cup


Separate your labia with your free hand and then, on an outward breath, insert your cup rim-first into your vagina. Slide up and back towards your tailbone (not straight up) until the body of your cup is completely inside.

Tip: Once inserted rotate your cup by gripping the base of your cup (not the stem) and rotate one complete turn. This will ensure it is in place creating a seal and avoid leaks.

Tip: Wriggle your hips and do a squat. It really helps to get your cup in place. It can take several attempts to get the technique that’s right for you. Give yourself time and patience. It is so worth it. 

How Often Do You Empty a Menstrual Cup?

You must remove and empty your menstrual cup at least once every 12 hours, depending on your menstrual flow. If you do have a heavy flow, you will find the volume marking really helpful to see just how much blood you are losing each time - and therefore how often you might need to change it.

How Far Do You Insert a Menstrual Cup?

Menstrual cups are designed to sit much lower than a tampon. However, the cup should still be fully inside your vagina, with the stem sitting inside the opening.

If you place it too high, gravity will do its job and it will come down into its natural resting place.

Can You Swim With a Menstrual Cup

Yes, you can swim with a menstrual cup in. And there is no horrid wet string feeling when you get out.

How to Remove Menstrual Cup Without Mess

You must remove and empty at least once every 12 hours, depending on your menstrual flow. In order to remove your menstrual cup, you must first release the seal. To remove your menstrual cup without mess,

1. Wash your hands, and sit on the toilet or squat to remove your cup. (Squatting reduces the length of the vagina and makes removal easier).

2. Gently squeeze the base of the cup with your thumb and index finger to release the suction seal. The stem is just a guide to locate the grip rings at the bottom of your cup, but you should NOT just pull on the stem. Relax your pelvic floor muscles and remove on an outward breath.

3. Gently wiggle the cup side to side as you pull it out. Keep it upright to avoid any spilling.

4. When your cup is almost out, angle it so it is slightly sideways to remove half the rim of the cup, and then angle the other way to release fully.

5. Holding your cup firmly, empty it into a toilet or sink.

Once you've removed your cup, you can rinse (and then repeat later on). We recommend that you wash your menstrual cup with cold water first to avoid staining. Then wash using warm water with neutral pH soap. Ensure that the 4 holes at the top are thoroughly cleaned.  

Can a Menstrual Cup Get Stuck in You?

It is unlikely for your menstrual cup to get stuck in you. Take a few deep breaths and focus on relaxing your pelvic floor muscles, and remove on a downward breath - removing your menstrual cup will be more more difficult if you are anxious.

Your vagina is only about 8-10 cm long, and your cervix will prevent your menstrual cup from going anywhere else in your body. 

Tip: After sleep your cup can sometimes move slightly higher up. Just walk around for a while to encourage it to move down.

If you are still having problems please contact our customer care support@secretwhispers.co.uk and or visit our website for more information. If you still have issues removing after 12 hours, please contact your healthcare provider.

Can You Use a Menstrual Cup With an IUD?

Yes, you can use a menstrual cup if you have an IUD. Just like a tampon, your menstrual cup will sit inside your vagina, whereas your IUD is inside your uterus. This means that inserting and removing a menstrual cup won't have any effect on your IUD. 

Are you ready to make the swap? Today you can get 20% off when you buy your Secret Whispers CupIT Menstrual Kit HERE, with Free UK Delivery guaranteed..

 "Can't believe I didn't get one sooner. First time I have used a CupIt and it is a game changer. I actually don't know what on earth I've been playing around at for the last 25 years!! It was like not having a period at all! Completely liberating ... only have to empty it morning and night. I found removing it tricky at first but soon learnt how best to, and it was totally worth it for the freedom it affords you. I used the blue smaller one most of the time, just the pink one on the first couple of nights. Love the little organic travel bags it comes with too."

Videos on Menstrual Cups

> What is CupIT and How does a Menstrual Cup Work?

How to insert your period CupIT and the recommended fold techniques

How to clean and look after your CupIT


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