I first heard about the reusable menstrual cup from my Kallah teacher and was immediately sold on the idea. It sounded too logical to not already be mainstream. After the initial phase of figuring out how to use it, there was no way I’d ever use anything else ever again (besides postpartum). It just make my life so much easier.

In high school, I was a cheerleader which meant often walking around school in a short skirt and bloomers, and football games, competitions, practices, etc. where I had to do flips and pyramids. Even during my period. It was always uncomfortable. Tampons leaked, pads were bulky and also leaked. I always wore both, even from my first period. Since I couldn’t predict onset bleeding, I was always worried around that time. Every teen girl’s nightmare is walking around with a red stain, but it is especially embarrassing for a cheerleader in uniform. There was also the anxiety of constantly carrying tampons and pads in my bag and frequently visiting the disgusting school bathrooms which I always tried to avoid at all costs. I often had to scrub my underwear of menstrual blood. It’s too bad I hadn’t been exposed to the menstrual cup as a teen because it would have saved me from all of that.

Fast forward a few years and I found myself teaching girls’ 9th grade gym in a high school. Some of the girls approached me regarding menstruation. I decided to teach a general lesson about it. When we got to the part about feminine hygiene products, I asked them what they know. Of course, pads and tampons. Most thought that even tampons were not for teenagers and that pads would be their only option.

At that point, I spoke a bit about the nature of the vagina, how it is extremely flexible and that tampons aren’t even so big. As a camp counselor I had taught girls how to insert tampons a number of times. One girl asked if I used tampons. That was when I introduced them to the menstrual cup.

There are 2 sizes. The smaller size is meant for younger women who haven’t given birth vaginally. Teen girls fit this category. Some of the advantages of the cup for teens:

  1. If the cup is inserted properly, she doesn’t need to worry about leaking since it is suctioned in. She can even do handstands and flips with it in. You can’t even feel it in there.
  2. She need not worry about frequent bathroom visits with tampons and/or pads in hand.  The cup is already inside and needs to be emptied only 2-3 times daily.
  3. If she is unsure of when her period will start, she can begin wearing the cup prior to its onset, unlike tampons.
  4. Some research shows using the cup can reduce cramping and shorten the period (perhaps because it draws out the blood that otherwise gets stuck in the internal folds). (This is a huge advantage later to anyone who wants to be sure she can get a clean hefsek as early as possible.)
  5. Not only do tampons and pads absorb menstrual fluid, they also absorb all the other vaginal fluids, which isn’t so healthy. The cup doesn’t absorb anything. It collects the menstrual fluid to be discarded, leaving the natural vaginal fluids intact. (That’s an advantage for a woman doing bedikot as well.)
  6. Clean up is easier and more ecological. Just remove the cup, pour the contents into the toilet, wipe with toilet paper, and re-insert. There is little mess down there to wipe up since everything is contained, nothing to throw in the garbage. This means less odor too. In between cycles, disinfect with alcohol and/or soap and water before storage and after storage.
  7. It saves lots of money and uncomfortable trips to the store. I remember buying tampons and pads wasn’t so comfortable as a teen. The cup is purchased once and can last up to 10 years.

After discussing the cup at length with my class, they made a group purchase, even those who hadn’t started menstruating yet. They were so excited about using it! I was a bit jealous that no one had told me about it in 9th grade.

Another interesting story: I told my grandma about it. She said that she had a menstrual cup as a young woman and loved it. She thought they had been taken off the market and didn’t understand why. I think I know why. It’s hard to profit off something that you only buy once. Companies saw more profit in disposable products. Now they are coming back because the public is more aware of environmental issues and saving money.

The menstrual cup is readily available today on the internet. There are tons of different brands. Each is a bit different. Some are sturdier, some more flexible. They are slightly different shapes and sizes, but they are all pretty much the same.

There are many videos and articles about the menstrual cup online. I recommend to any mother of teen girls to look it up, do some research about it with your teen, and consider it as an option.

Natasha has generously offered a 10% discount to Eden friends who are interested in buying a menstrual cup through her. For details email social at