Friday, January 11, 2013

A Happy Period? Never, But it's now Better Than Ever and Green!

No matter what you call it:  Aunt Flo, Mother Nature, That time of the month, Period, or as I like to refer to it "Don't mess with Mama week" it seems to be an uncomfortable subject.  And don't even get me started on those stupid cute (we don't use the "s" word at our house, normally) commercials about having a happy period showing some teeny bopper frolicking around the beach in a white bikini.  I don't care how nice your period is, it isn't that happy.  EVER.

Why is this such a taboo subject?  I mean, it's something that happens every month of your life from the time you are 10 (if you are me) until you are done with menopause (if I understand my mother correctly)!  I say we should be able to be adults, and discuss this subject openly!   I read somewhere a while back that over a billion feminine products are disposed of yearly in our landfills, and I was devastated realizing my part in this gross number! 

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How about leaks?  Up until the last three months, I have never had a period where I didn't experience leaks. Of course, I am using products properly, but I have always had the heaviest and longest periods.  I can use a super tampon, backed up with a plus sized pad with wings, and still experience an embarrassing leak.  If the cramps, back pain, headache from Hades, and overall bloating/irritability weren't bad enough, a leak is definitely the straw that broke the camel's back, if you know what I mean!

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Oh, and did I mention I should own stock in the tampon/pad companies?  My period lasts between 7-13 days a month;  I spend a minimum of $20 on period supplies, and that is on a 7 day month!  I swear, Aunt Flo has gotten to be one costly unwanted relative, let me tell you!

I say no more!  I have officially purchased my last pad, tampon, and pantyliner ever!  You can take that one to the bank.  I have discovered a nifty product known as a menstrual cup which. has. been. a. lifesaver.  Period.  Yes, all puns intended.  I personally tried the Lunette Cynthia ,a medical-grade silicone "bell-shaped" cup that you insert in your vagina (or "pretty" as my girls call it) similar to a diaphragm.

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You can wear it for up to 12 hours without emptying it, and I haven't had one single leak!  Yes, I shouted that in relief.   

Now, if you haven't been near a vagina in a while, I am here to tell you, it's a slippery sucker for sure!  So, it might take you a minute to figure out just what fold and position for inserting the cup will work best for you.  I personally love the C-fold.

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 How do you get it out?  Well, I'm glad you asked.  For me, I put a little pressure on the bulb portion and the suction releases.  However, you can also, use the stem to help pull it out, or you can push it out the same way you do a baby, but with much less pain.  

I wash and boil mine every month after I am done using it to make sure it is perfectly clean for the next use.  The best part is for somewhere in the range of $40, you have a product that can last for years if you tend to it properly!  I can tell you I will never use another product.

Lastly, I want to mention that if you have a daughter that is nearing or at puberty age, Be Prepared Period is an invaluable source of real life information and experiences to help you have a healthier, better prepared, conversation and period!   As a matter of fact, BePreparedPeriod offers Tweet Chats, so check here to find the next chat session!  



78 comments:

  1. I haven't used Lunette cup yet, but made the switch to cloth after having my little guy. Way more comfortable!

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    1. I haven't tried cloth, Shannon, but I did consider it. I would definitely go cloth before going back to paper products. This works so well, and I love how easy it is to use

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  2. I am almost finished, not having period for a year, and then having one, going another 100 months and then having one. I don't want to use anything! I want to be done!! LOL. This does look like a great option.

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    1. wow, it sounds like you have it slightly better than most. Mine are such bad ones. I can have one for 7 days, go 5 weeks, have one for 13 days, OR I can have one for 13 days, off for 5 and back on for another 7. Mother Nature is evil, I tell you. THIS is a perfect solution.

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  3. Wow, this is new to me.....HOWEVER, I will not have to worry about it any longer....Menopause baby!!! Yep, not sure which is worse!

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    1. Jealous, I think. I am in the fun pre stages of just evilness, I tell you. During this I have one in the Terrific three's, a 14 year old boy going through puberty, and a 10 year old who has had 2 cycles and also going through puberty. I have an almost 9 year old who will join next year I am sure, so it's just hormones galore up in here! Wild and Crazy!

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  4. I have seen this before and don't know if I would personally use one. I can see the pros of using it but I think I would be uncomfortable using one.

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    1. It's probably not for everyone, but once it's inserted, you can't feel it-much like a tampon. Also, it's not nearly as messy as immediately comes to mind. Just some extra food for thought as you ponder :)

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  5. This sounds really interesting. I love that you can keep it in for 12 hours!

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    1. It's handy for if you are out on a long day of shopping since you obviously don't want to empty it in a public facility, or even for a good night's sleep if you are lucky enough to have one!

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  6. I have never heard of this! 12 hours is absolutely amazing! I need to look more into this. Thanks!

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    1. There are quite a few brands, Diva Cup, Lunette, FemmeCup. Check out Bepreparedperiod.com, they have a great selection of brands since I am going off of memory!

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    2. there are over 20 brands of menstrual cup, check out the blog menstrualcupinfo for reviews, photos, info and the size charts http://sizecharts.livejournal.com/ for where to start when choosing a cup! :)

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  7. Never heard of this before!! Sounds very interesting!! Oh the issues females have to deal with! =)

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    1. I'm with you on the issues, Kristin! I say it's mother nature's evil sense of humor!

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  8. You officially crack me up! I had my tubes tied after my second kid and ever since my periods have gotten worse and longer....I completely understand your pain, I just stay home so it doesnt happen. This sounds like a miracle, just wonder on the smell part?

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    1. I am actually a tad bit psychotic, yes I admit it, about female smell. I haven't noticed a smell issue like occurs with pads or tampons. I do rinse mine out every couple of hours because I am at home (except for in the night when I am sleeping), but I have been shopping for hours before and not had an issue.

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    2. I'm going to butt in with what I understand of the smell issue (which is far from encyclopedic but it's a start). I apologize in advance if this is too... blunt.

      Most menstrual cups (the Lunette included) are made out of medical grade silicone which is completely non-porous and theoretically can't take on smells. Since the blood sits in the cup (most of the time) and isn't really exposed to air much it doesn't oxidize much while it's in therefore preventing odors. With a pad or tampon the blood is exposed to air causing oxidation and bacterial growth which lead to odors.

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    3. I am so glad you replied! I wasn't really sure what the reasoning was/is, but smells are a non issue! Now I know why, and it also explains the difference in color (again tmi I know) in a pad/tampon and what is in the cup!

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  9. First of all, your pics are very pretty! Your home seems so warm and inviting. I can't believe how long your period lasts and how much it costs you to deal with it! This cup must be a lifesaver for you.

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    1. Thanks for the comments about my home! I try to keep it where someone can walk in without me dying of embarrassment, but more often than not, we have 3 kids and at least 30 stuffies playing house or school in the living room :D This HAS been a lifesaver for me. I have suffered like this my whole life, even as a teenager. They tried just about every brand of birth control, but not only does it not work, it plays with my hormonal sanity!

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  10. Ha! Being told to have a happy period tends to make me go into a hormonal rage as well. I've been looking for some alternatives but didn't have much luck with the Instead. Maybe it's a shape thing and I should invest in a proper reusable one...glad to hear this works for you and is leak free!

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    1. I believe it is the wide shape of it...just can't prevent leaks if it is so large. I don't honestly know, but I was very skeptical about leaking with any cup after using Instead, but I really have had good experience with Lunette

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  11. Wow, 12 hours. I was very hesitant to try this before but your post is very well informed.

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    1. I don't typically let it go that long just because, but I have had to while out and about, and it was just fine!

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  12. I'm glad your period is going better. I've always had a pretty heavy flow, but it's only really bad for maybe 3 days and the last 3 days are more moderate to light. I've always been a dedicated pad user because tampons creep me out, but I actually just decided to try a cup. I've got a couple Fleurcups coming my way in the next couple weeks which I'm super excited about.

    There are a ton of different cups out there if you ever decide you need something different and a lot of them are actually even more affordable than the Lunette. There's a menstrual cup community on livejournal that's absolutely packed with nice people and useful information.

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    1. I have a Femmecup which I am pretty happy with as well! My next purchase is to be the Diva Cup. I am hoping to do a post on the differences, if any in the various companies. I do like that Lunette offers the colors because I have used my Femmecup for 4 months and it is already off colored. Anyways, again thanks for commenting!

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  13. I couldn't agree more on being adults about this. As soon as I discovered how wonderful menstrual cups are (after first being squeamish when my SIL introduced the concept to me), I couldn't shut up about them. I STILL can't shut up about them! I take every available opportunity to educate EVERYONE on the subject of reusables. I even know few people who hate tampons more than I, so I can assure them that a cup is NOTHING like a tampon, aside from where it's worn.

    With my husband as an example, I've also discussed these with other men. They have sisters/mothers/cousins who could benefit from this, and they know it! These people are amazing! One day, the topic somehow steered in this direction when I was talking with a friend in the presence of her new (new!) boyfriend, and he piped in, "I've heard about those. No TSS risks, right?" Needless to say, he's a keeper.

    In fair trade, I've learned as much as I can about male grievances, so we can all be adults and whine about what "ails" us. It's fun to watch the reactions of newcomers or visitors to our circle, but we're happy they can walk away knowing a little more, even if they didn't want to know about cups and stuff at the time! :D

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    1. I agree, and I am all for educating, as well as learning about new great product. These have apparently been around for years but I knew nothing of them :/

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    2. I know, right? I can't believe how long these have been around! It broke my heart when I read about the Tassaway. >_<

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  14. Thanks for all this info, I have been interested in trying one of these cups, I had read a lot about the Diva Cup but some people found it more difficult to remove than some of the other options out there. Glad to learn about my other options!

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    1. It's a thicker cup than some, in my opinion. I intend to write a comparison review of several products towards the middle/end of February which will highlight the differences, or how they are the same. I don't have an issue at all removing it. However, it is a bit larger than a couple of other brands so I had to trim the stem. If I had not, it would hang out-sorry for the tmi. I have found the best method for removal is to lightly squeeze the bulb section while standing. It will slide right out and if you hold it right, the opening of the cup is always upright!

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  15. Just LOVE J3551C's comment - great attitude and approach! I, too, have become a reusable promoter and could nto imagine going any other way...except I cannot wait for Menopause to stop having to deal with it altogether!

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    1. I too am waiting for the other side of menopause. I get physically sick every month from the pain-vomiting, stomach cramps, back locks up-it's just not a welcome friend anymore!

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  16. I have seen quite a few posts about the menstrual cups lately and I'm seriously considering getting one. I love that they are reusable and are supposed last a long time!

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    1. I have been very very pleased with my cups. I have one I prefer for regular days, and one that I wear for super heavy days. However, you really only need one cup-I just have an exceptional situation to contend with here :)

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  17. I am very interested in this product! I've never tried it before, but think I'd really like to!

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    1. It is definitely pleasantly surprising once you get the hang of it. Only took me a couple of inserts to nail it!

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  18. I love that there are so many more eco friendly options for period care! I want to use something that is healthy for my body not full of chemicals in the most sensitive areas of the body. And also save a ton of money in the end...I would love to try this cup!

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    1. I couldn't agree with you more on all those points. I have really become conscious of what goes on/in my body both food and chemicals in the last several years and it is just scary what we have been adding for years!

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  19. I really love Lunette cups. My period was super intense before and I would saturate a tampon in just a couple hours, so much so that it would slip out and I would have leaks. My period was also very painful. Using a cup has made me feel normal during my period. I don't have leaks, only have to change it two or three times in 24 hours (sleeping is so much better now!) and I have much less cramping. :)

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    1. I haven't yet seen a huge difference in my cramping, but just the non leaks alone is a miracle! I am normally confined to the house for the 2 weeks I am cycling because it takes 30 minutes to drive to the city and I HAD to be in a restroom every 20 minutes or else. Now, I can be gone for hours!

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  20. I would love to try this brand. I have another and I am not all that crazy about it. I have heard that some people like a certain brand more than others. Id love to win and try the Lunette cup.

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    1. You are so right, Jill. It may take several brands before you find one that is just right for you. I actually have one I prefer for lighter days, and this one is my favorite for super heavy days. However, I bought the larger size on this one, which is why it works well for my heavy days.

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  21. I started using a DivaCup about 5 years ago, and loved it. My only gripe is that particular brand is more "firm" so, while not uncomfortable, I can always feel it there, and can be a little distracting. Now I'm pregnant with baby #2, and if my cycle is anything like with the first, I won't need any menstrual supplies until he's about 12 months old, but when we get there, I'm planning to buy a Lunette to replace the Diva with, as I've heard the Lunette is more comfortable.

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    1. I don't have a DivaCup, so I have no point of reference. I absolutely love that the Lunette comes in colors. My clear one is looking off colored despite boiling every month and purple won't stain as badly

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  22. I love my lunette cup! I did experience a few leaks the first time I used it...but that was my first period after I had my first baby. And boy, no one ever told me how HEAVY that period might be! I tried it again for other periods and I was quite pleased with it's performance. I'd love to have another one to put in my travel bag. It seems that my period likes to catch me unaware!

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    1. lol isn't it funny how our bodies change after having a baby? Mine were always heavy, but after I had my first baby, they are LONG and heavy as well as a surprise. I might have two a month, or one every 2 months!

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  23. I REALLY have happy periods, I hope you can know this joy too one day :) We, woman, have to take back our feminity, and celebrate! :D

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  24. I have a DivaCup and absolutely love it! I want to try the Lunette cup though because I read somewhere that it is softer and easier to get a hold of to remove. I have a heavy flow period and my period last anywhere between a week and a half to two weeks so the cup has been a god send. I have saved so much money and lets not mention about not having to be worried about the uncomfortable dried out feeling after each period!

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    1. I don't have the irritation from the cup that wearing tampons for 2 weeks causes either. IT's almost like it "rubs you raw" but you have to wear them! My stem is lower on my cup so I trimmed mine, but it is definitely easy to grab

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  25. I have never heard of this but would love to try it!

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    1. I am biased because I love mine, but I think once you cup you will never go back :D

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  26. I switched to menstrual cups about a year ago and I will never go back! I seriously forget that I'm on my period sometimes. The only leaks I've ever had were because I wasn't careful enough about making sure it opened all the way.

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    1. I am the same. The only leaks i have ever experienced were user related. The best is at night time. I have slept on a towel which I washed daily for years. It's so nice to just sleep like a normal person

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  27. I am so looking forward to trying these...was getting ready to look for one,but now have a year or so reprieve where I'm trading morning sickness for periods! Usually live outside of the States and getting tampons is tough! I think this will be amazing!

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    1. I think you will be pleasantly surprised. I don't know about others, but right after having a baby , I can't put anything inside. I usually have too many stitches. However, it's perfect for your second period on!

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  28. Congrats! I've yet to takl to a single woman that after ditching paper products wanted to go back to them, be it switching for a cup or cloth. I wish more were open to trying something different, they'd realize how very uncomfortable and inconvenient all the stuff in the aisle at Walmart really is.

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  29. I love the Lunette and have been trying to convince my best girlfriends that they NEED to make the change. I was introduced to mama cloth after the birth of our first child; I used cloth postpartum pads and never looked back after that. Now pregnant with #2, the Lunette is taking a sabbatical, but I am getting stocked with mama cloth for the postpartum storm to come.

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    1. I think many THINK it is going to be a messy solution, but honestly, disposables get your hands dirtier in my opinion. Plus they are thinking it will leak like a tampon and how are you going to empty it at work, etc. I swear none of the above is true. It's like cloth diapering, if they will just TRY it's so addictive!

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  30. My periods are so much worse {heavier, with more pains, moods etc.} since having my 4th baby. I hate this time of the month, and have been looking for ways to relieve the pain, stress, etc. I thought it was strange at first to try something like this, but I think it would actually "feel" better, and ease my mind from tampons. I hate pads UGH

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    1. Supposedly using cups reduce flow and length of period. I have not seen this after 4 months of using a cup. However, I don't have leaks, I can leave the house, or even sleep a full night without running to the bathroom every 2 hours...I think you may be pleasantly surprised, and some people do see a lighter/shorter period

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  31. once upon a time, a long time ago (like 3 moves) I had a Diva cup. Then, it disappeared, then I got pregnant. I loved, loved, loved my cup, but when my menses returned, I couldn't find it. I have wanted to try one of the other brands, but always seem to have other expenses. :(

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  32. I loved loved my Diva cup, but it disappeared sometime between getting preggers and my 1st period about 8 months after delivery. I blame the 2 moves in between!
    I've also used homemade cloth pads, and have liked both way more than disposable things. I agree about it being like cloth diapering, way less messy than people think! (we did that, too ^_^)

    sorry if this is a double post, I didn't see the 1st one, and didn't note if you were moderating these or not :)

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  33. Nichole W.

    I have used the Lunette now for a couple of years and it has changed my perception of my period. I don't think of my perioid as something tossed aside (like tampons), but something to care about (wash & reuse). Also, my periods 'seem' to be lighter now, but I think it is because the flow is not obstructed and fills the cup instead of using tampons with limited capacity.

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  34. Ever since I discovered cups, I've desperately wanted one for myself and others. I thinks it's a great alternative for women and girls who live in impoverished countries instead of having to stay at home for a week. I keep trying to convince my mother to have an open mind, but she being resistant! I will persevere!!

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  35. My periods aren't that bad right now but I still hate all the waste each month. And frankly pad STINK, as in, they smell bad. Yuck.

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  36. I would use this at work since I do not like changing a tampon in the middle of my work shift. I can take it out when I get home

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  37. I started using cloth pads about two months ago, and I want to try the Keeper or the Lunette cup, but I am still a little nervous about them. I work overnights now though and it is harder to run to the bathroom every hour to change so I don't have any leaks. It would be wonderful to make it an entire shift without worrying if I am leaking everywhere.

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  38. Would love the Lunette to be my first menstrual cup!! Would love it even more if I could win one!!

    I'm already in love with menstrual cups and I haven't even used them!

    ~Susannah McGarty

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  39. I really want to get a cup (not sure what brand) before I start getting my cycle again. I'm hoping it will be at least another 4 months so I'm saving my tampon money towards a cup. I hope that using the OB with no applicator will help me adjust to inserting the cup. I'm trying to decide between this and the diva. I know that silicone is a must as I have a sensitivity to bananas (a relative of latex) and there's no way I want to have a piece of rubber in such a sensitive spot for a week every month!

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  40. Wow, you have a long period, mine only last 3-4 days. Even in those 3-4 days tampons constantly leak for me as well and I have ruined countless pairs of underwear in the process. To see my husbands face when he sees my underwear in the garbage is priceless though. Second reason my husband would be happy if I got one of these is that he would not have to make anymore self-deprecating visits to the grocery store to buy tampons for me.

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  41. I love my Diva Cup and have used it for 5 years. It makes me happy to never have to throw out another tampon. It was good through a really heavy period and works just as well with a light period.
    I'd love to try this product too.

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  42. I have always wondered how these cups work after seeing them on a few different blogs..it seems like it would save a lot of money which is a great thing :)

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  43. my periods knock me out with pain and I get cysts not fun

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  44. I have always wanted to try them. I just don't know if it would work for me.

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