My first time using a menstrual cup was on vacation. I needed to go swimming in a pool and on the beach. I wasn’t sure how to use a menstrual cup, or what to expect in the water. I looked out at the beach and thought there might be sharks, and feared the worst. Luckily, a cup is a great way to swim all month long, uninterrupted by nature. Unlike a tampon, a cup is even better for swimming because it will not absorb water. Here are some tips for using a reusable menstrual cup swimming!
While I initially worried that my cup would dislodge and leak it’s contents into the ocean, I was pleasantly surprised to discover that it stayed put. In addition, it was even a bit tricky to get out and I found that I needed to pinch it to break the seal before slowly lowering the cup. When a cup fits properly, it creates a seal that helps avoid leaks, doesn’t let water in and is comfortable to wear. However, even a good fitting cup can use backup, and there are some precautions you can take.
Bathing Suit Liner
While the menstrual cup is a fairly clean process, it’s nearly impossible to guarantee that there won’t be any blood drips after insertion. Wearing a cloth liner on your bathing suit will help ensure that it stays stain-free and unmarred while out of the water. A thin liner can be worn into the water, however it will also get saturated. If you’re just sitting beach or pool-side and not going in the water, any pad will do, if you’re actually going in and will need a liner a thin one is best.
Once you get to know your cycle and cup use, it’s easy to know just about how long you can wear your cup before it needs to be emptied. Ideally, you can put your cup in before heading out to the beach or pool, and even if you get tied up you won’t be stuck on the sand when it’s time to empty. In addition, you can time cup use so that you can empty it somewhere comfortable, and not in a public beach bathroom with no sink in sight. Affiliate banner below.
Properly Fitting Cup
Having the right size cup is important. An improperly fitting cup can dislodge or have leaks that are easily avoided with the right cup. While some may have to try a few cups, most companies have just one or two sizes and include a pre and post baby sized cup. In addition, trying it out ahead of time will build confidence and help ensure the beach or pool will be spill-free. Cups do need to be replaced over time. Checking your cup for wear and replacing when necessary will help keep swimming free of surprises.
Back Up Plan
If you’re new to cup use, like I am, then having a back up plan is reassuring. Keeping reusable pads and a cup holder in your tote bag is a great way to know you won’t be stuck with a cup issue while by the water. While a cup is a great reusable choice for swimming in blood-free water, having a back-up cup or pads on stand-by for just-in-case might help keep your mind at ease and the water blood-free.
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