Top 5 Best Reusable Menstrual Cups for Travel - All You Need to Know About Them
Top 5 Best Reusable Menstrual Cups for Travel – All You Need to Know About Them
Planning on travelling? Or perhaps you’ve already been travelling and considering another long holiday – away from work and daily matters. There are several factors that have prompted me to share with you my thoughts on and eventually creating an article about finding the best reusable menstrual cups for travel review.
You might have heard of menstrual cups before and if not, don’t worry, I’m going to cover it for you.
Going Travelling? Try Reusable Menstrual Cups for Beginners
Being outside of the country for a few months numerous times at a time, living out of the suitcase leading to the limited space, love for minimising my own waste contribution and hygiene matters. These are the main reasons behind me switching to reusable menstrual cup as a simple alternative to tampons and sanitary pads we’re all familiar with and not exactly fond of.
Being passionate about travel also means having to constantly think outside the box. Experimenting with a reusable period cup seems to be working well for me and may as well work for you, whether you’re an avid traveller or want to try something new. For more, check out our article on best gadgets for travel here.
I hope I can answer all your questions on best reusable menstrual cups for travel but if not, remember that you can always comment in the section below!
Looking for Sanitary Pad and Tampon Alternatives? Try Reusable Menstrual Cups
Why am I talking about that? Because travelling also means learning to how to deal with the inconvenience. Make it easy for yourself and use reusable menstrual cups for travel. Finding the best reusable menstrual cup for travel can be your choice because of pure convenience and it comes with many other benefits.
What is a Reusable Menstrual Cup?
What exactly is a menstrual cup, also called a soft cup? You might have seen it before. I like to compare it to a flexible, wider version of a funnel. This funnel, or menstrual cup if you wish, is designed to insert in your vagina during menstruation to collect your period. I might surprise you here but they were invented by midwifes long time ago, back in 1932!
How Does a Reusable Menstrual Cup Work
The main difference between soft cups versus tampons and sanitary pads is that it does not absorb your menstrual flow because it’s made out of soft silicone or rubber. This also means you are more likely to manage leaks and that you’re good to go once you’ve rinsed the reusable menstrual cup. Remove, empty, rinse and reinsert. It’s that simple.
What you might like about period cups as well is that you will change it when the reusable menstrual cup starts to get fuller. It won’t develop a strange smelling odour as the pads would. The only thing to keep in mind is your sensitivity to latex – if you are sensitive, finding best reusable menstrual cup made out of the medical grade silicone.
Why Is It Common to Be Getting UTI When on Period Whilst Travelling?
Let’s start with the basics of the personal hygiene. As you can imagine, maintaining personal hygiene during travelling can be quite a challenge, depending on your personal finances and lifestyle. If you’re on a shoestring budget and want to travel for as long as possible, you’ll need to compromise on the quality of accommodation – with some of the remote places looking less promising than the 5-star hotels!
Going Travelling? Beware of Sanitisation Differences!
In particular when it comes to your menstrual cycle. I think we’re all familiar with urinary tract infections, commonly known as UTI. Well, just so that you know, getting a bladder infection during your period is very common and during travelling even outside your period isn’t exactly uncommon.
If you haven’t had it, good for you, if you have, well, now you know how it feels and that you don’t want to get through it ever again. Bladder infections can happen regardless of whether you travel or not.
UTI can happen not only due to sexual activity or lack of hygiene but also around period because estrogen hormone levels during menstruation tend to be lowest due to bleeding, known to have anti-inflammatory properties. This means that you can catch UTI more often.
Common Causes of UTI or Urinary Tract Infections When Travelling
Combine it with travelling which involves physical activity, sweat, sun and limited access to public toilets (going somewhere remote? Then it’s just you and nature, I’m afraid!) and carrying toilet paper around, probably somewhere at the bottom of your daypack, too.
Just a heads up, some places like Indonesia, Thailand, Vietnam, Philippines or Cambodia use only water to rinse yourself! Often the quality of sanitisation system and toilet water even in touristy spots can be quite questionable, too.
As you can imagine, tampons and sanitary pads don’t make your life any easier as they’re in direct contact with your organs and are an obvious hotbed for breeding all sorts of bacteria.
Having an alternative, such as reusable menstrual cup that can be easily washed and disinfected significantly reduces chances of getting any forms of infections and spread of bacteria.
Benefits of Switching to a Reusable Menstrual Cup
It’s a great solution to maintaining good vaginal health that prevents bacterial infections, doesn’t dry out your feminine parts and reduces waste, even better if you’re environmentally conscious! Not to mention that it saves you a lot of money in the long run as you only need to buy it once. In fact, I got my first UTI from tampons and that’s how I stopped using them.
Not to mention that you’ll be saving yourself your precious space in your suitcase and time on having to look for stores and pharmacies in some parts of Asia that sell only sanitary pads as some regions in South East Asia aren’t very familiar with tampons.
Imagine, you only need buy a period cup once, put it in your suitcase with your beauty products and you’ll never end up panicking if you have enough sanitary pads or tampons left at home, suitcase or handbag!
How to Insert a Menstrual Cup
Start with washing your hands before applying, then fold the period cup with three fingers (sort of squeeze it in the middle to create two loops or letter C or S) and insert it inside your feminine parts. It will pop and will open up inside, and that’s you done! It’s quick and easy and you can wear it all day, depending on how heavy is your cycle of course, even up to 12 hours – already much longer than the tampons.
You don’t have to think of getting your sanitary pad wet or desperately looking for a tampon hidden at the bottom of your bag when you want to enjoy the sunny beach days or trek for hours.
Reusable Menstrual Cup Sizes
Some of the best menstrual cups come in more than one size. You might see size 1 and 2, A or B and some might offer even more sizes. Start with the smaller size to get used to it first. Of course, smaller size means you’ll need to replace it a little more often but this will get you used to it in case you need more time. To me, it’s an ideal solution for travel as well as being out or staying in the office.
How to Clean a Menstrual Cup
All you need is to boil a period cup for 5-10 minutes in hot water to sterilise the cup. Do it right away when your period ends so you don’t give any more time for bacteria to linger around. Personally, I wash it first with unscented, oil-free soap before putting the menstrual cup inside the boiling water but some soft cup brands offer washing soaps as well.
Use the soap of your choice or a sterilising cup wash and if you’re sensitive, go with your usual intimate area wash to avoid upsetting your pH and avoid dryness. I normally go with the simple, natural white soap that’s also hypoallergenic. Nice and easy!
Where to Buy a Menstrual Cup
If you’d like to try a period cup for yourself but don’t know where to buy a menstrual cup, check out your local pharmacy, as they might stock some. If not, there are several places you can find soft cups, such as online pharmacies, direct websites of reusable menstrual cup providers or Amazon is now pretty well equipped with them.
Expect to pay around £20-£30 for some of the best menstrual cups. It might seem expensive but think again. Each month you probably spend about £4-5 so in the space of 4 months you’ve already covered the cost of a period cup that might last you another 10.
Be smart about how you spend your money, especially that if you do suffer from occasional or recurring UTIs, then you might be indirectly adding extra cash on vitamins and supplements.
Top 5 Best Menstrual Cup for Beginners
Right, your eyes might be set on the period cup but how to choose the best menstrual cup for beginners? There are a few brands like Diva cup, Moon cup, Lunette cup, Lily cup, Luna cup and Meluna cup. This article focuses only on the best reusable menstrual cups and not disposable menstrual cups which look more like condoms for women.
Now you have a choice, a few years ago it was mainly Diva cup, which still remains to be the leading brand and first choice for the period cup beginners. Let’s take a closer look at them to find the best menstrual cups out there.
1. Mooncup (also Moon cup)
If you’re not familiar with Su Hardy, look her up, she founded Mooncup back in 2001 and has grown her little baby Mooncup to become one of the market leaders in reusable menstrual cup industry.
Just as with the Diva Cup sizes, Moon cup comes in two sizes. Moon cup A is for anyone over 30 and those who have given birth and Moon cup B if you’re under 30 or haven’t given birth yet. Try the smaller Mooncup first in case you find it too big or not soft enough to fit in as bigger Mooncup can be a little bit painful to take out.
- Available in two sizes: A (bigger by 3 mm, holds 30 ml) and B
- Certified by the Vegan Society
- Made with soft medical grade silicone rubber
- Manufactured in the UK
- ISO certified, FDA registered
- Up to 8 hours guaranteed protection
- Lasts many years
- Does not contain latex, bleaches, BPA, phthalates, plastic, bleaches or toxins, absorbency gels or deodorisers
- Suitable for someone with sensitive skin or allergies
- Holds 3x as much liquid as tampons
- Comes with an organic cotton bag
- Can be shipped to your home country if ordered here
2. Intimina Lily cup
Lily cup menstrual cup by Intimina is probably the most stylish out of menstrual cup brands. It comes in three different designs. Lily Cup one is for the absolute beginners regardless of their age.
Lily Cup can be rolled up to look like a tampon! Both Lily Cup and Lily Cup Compact are designed with the thought of women who have given birth already and come in two sizes for heavier and lighter menstrual flow but the main difference between them is the high and low cervix. Lily Cup Compact will work for those with lower cervix, the other two models are for high cervix.
Remember when selecting, size A is smaller and comes in the lighter pink version in both Lily Cup and Lily Cup Compact editions for ladies who have not given birth naturally and size B is bigger, comes in darker pink and is for ladies who have given birth naturally.
If that wasn’t enough, Ziggy Cup is their novelty, a flat-fit design that can be worn during intercourse as well apparently – haven’t tested it so can’t tell you anything about it though.
What do you think, aren’t spoilt for choice here with Intimina Lily cup options?
- Made of medical-grade silicone
- Shaped to fit your body for total comfort
- Comes in 5 sizes, based on the height of cervix, menstrual flow and pregnancy
- Can be worn up to 12 hours
- Collapses into a discreet case with an extra rim for opening and sealing
- Lily Cup One is designed for the beginners to menstrual cups regardless of their age
- Features 3 different designs
3. Diva Cup
Diva cup has been in the market for quite some time now and it comes in two sizes, Diva Cup 1 Pre Childbirth and Diva Cup Model 2 Menstrual Cup. The first one is recommended for anyone who is under 30 and hasn’t given birth and the second one is recommended for the older group or those who have given birth. The small one is still pretty big so you can really start with smaller size, Reusable Diva Cup model 1.
- Available in two sizes: 1 (under 30 & no pregnancy) and 2 (over 30 and past pregnancy)
- Graduated ml measurements that can be used to measure menstrual flow for a nurse or a gynaecologist
- Does not contain any latex, plastic, PVC, acrylic, acrylate, BPA, phthalate, elastomer, or polyethylene
- Diva Cup can be used up to 12 hours
- High-quality medical grade silicone
- Suitable for those with latex allergies
- Lasts up to 10 years
- International organization of Standardization (ISO) approved and FDA registered
- DivaWash sterilising wash available separately
4. Lunette cup
Lunette cup is another good product you’ll enjoy using. It comes in two sizes, the Lunette Cup Model 1 (made with softer silicone) and Lunette Cup Model 2 (firmer silicone). Smaller size with 25ml capacity makes it very suitable for teens and young users, active women with strong feminine muscles, those with short cervix and sensitive and overreactive bladder
- Comes in 2 sizes, The Lunette Cup Model 1 (smaller, softer silicone, 25ml, lines 5ml and 13.5ml) and The Lunette Cup Model 2 (larger, firmer silicone, 30ml, lines 7.5ml and 15ml)
- Made with soft medical grade silicone and BPA free
- Measuring lines helps assess the menstrual flow levels for doctors, nurses and yourself
- Up to 12 hours
- Can be used overnight
- Suitable for someone looking for very small sizes available on the market (model 1), ideal for teens and young users
- Sustainable and vegan friendly
- Comes in a variety of colours (blue, purple, pink, yellow, orange, clear)
- Can also be ordered and shipped to your home country here
- A set of cup wipe, cup cleanser and bag or liquid soap available separately
5. Dutchess menstrual cup
If you’re looking for some cheaper alternatives without compromising too much on the quality (since you only pay once, I’m sure you’d rather get it right the first time), Dutchess menstrual cup might fit a smaller wallet. Provided you’re after something that offers value for money, that it. Bonus points for the box that comes with not one but a set of 2 reusable menstrual cups.
- Each box comes with a set of two menstrual cups
- Value for money
- Made with 100% medical grade tear-proof silicone
- Can be worn up to 12 hours
- Can be worn overnight
- Free from toxins, latex and harmful irritants like BPA
- Suitable for physical exercise like swimming, gym, dance
- Comes in two sizes although A (post-natal) is quite small with 25 ml capacity
- Dutchess cup wash and Dutchess Menstrual cup foaming cleanser, both 100% plant based sold separately
I think you’re now a lot more informed about the reusable period cups. I’ve listed some of the best menstrual cups out there and I’m sure you’d be happy with whichever one you go for, depending on your preferred size, softness and budget.
I haven’t tried la Meluna cup (it’s the same thing as Luna Cup) or Merula which comes in 7 beautiful colours so cannot tell you if these ones are any good but they also seem to have some good reviews.
Menstrual Cup Dangers – What Are They?
Let’s be honest here. Switching to a reusable menstrual cup doesn’t mean you should drop your hygiene levels. If you do, just like with tampons in extreme cases, you might experience what’s referred to as TSS or Toxic Shock Syndrome. However, it’s much lower than in tampons but just remember not to forget about the basics.
By basics, I mean washing your hands before inserting a cup and cleaning your period cup before reusing it. Like with all hygiene products, it’s only to be used by you, remember that. During travels you might meet people from different cultures and they might view it differently.
Don’t leave it for more than 12 hours and empty it as it gets fuller. Also, apparently some menstrual cups can be left in during sex. Well, use your own logic on that. The last thing you want is your half full period cup spilling all over the bed! If you’re happy with that, you’ll enjoy using it too.
Final Thoughts on Best Reusable Menstrual Cups for Travel
Right, I hope you’re fully educated on reusable menstrual cups. If you feel more at ease now, it’s probably good to make a switch to a soft cup. Some of the best reusable menstrual cups will almost make you forget you even have anything in there and most importantly, you will feel fresh.
Just remember to maintain your hygiene levels and you’ll love the convenience and cost effectiveness of this little, silicone funnel! After all, we all want the best for ourselves, including using the best menstrual cup for travel adventures.
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