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The DivaCup Review

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As someone who is no stranger to the use of the menstrual cup, I was excited to partner with DivaCup for both the latest giveaway as well as the free one to test out and review.

Diva Cup in Packaging See, back in the day, I used another brand of menstrual cup. Before setting off on my extended travels, I wanted something that made sense to the pack snob within – the one that didn’t like the idea of stock-piling tampons (I had studied abroad in Italy in college and was never happy with my tampon selection in that country) and one who was just curious as to whether or not the menstrual cup would work better for me.

And it did. I loved the menstrual cup and used it for several years until I one month misplaced the cup. Blame it on me being lazy, but I just never got around to ordering a new one, and instead explored the world of Australian tampons (uhm… so they don’t believe in applicators here), which was fine. But, when I started thinking about longer-term travel again, I wanted a cup – which is where DivaCup came in.

I’ve now had a couple of cycles with the Divacup, and I’m just so happy to have this little item in my arsenal again. For me, it just takes a lot of worry out of that time of the month – mainly because with tampons, I always fear leakage. Instead, with my cup, I barely have to worry. In fact, I know that if I’m on a long, long trip, or traveling in the countryside with lame toilet facilities, I am still going to be OK.

DivaCup in bag Sure, the process of using a DivaCup might be a bit more invasive than tampons (well, not for the women Down Under who don’t use applicators!), but the peace of mind I receive is more than enough to outweigh that negative. I also really enjoy that I usually only have to attend to it 2, maybe 3, times per day. So, I empty in the morning, and again in the evening when back from my city tours, and again before bed — and that’s all!

Plus, it holds little to no risk of causing TSS. Win!

In comparison to my other brand of cup I used in the past, there are a few reasons why I enjoy the DivaCup a little more:

  • The stem on the DivaCup is shorter. So, while the older cup I used to use had a long stem that made it easy to grab and pull out for emptying, the stem would often poke and prod me in places I wished it hadn’t. The smaller stem is nice in that regard, and I find that if I can’t reach the stem very well, it only takes a few clenches of the muscles (like pushing down) before it is accessible.
  • The clear color of the DivaCup has not been affected by the menstrual fluids. My older cup had a tendency to turn colors until I was able to give it a proper boil or scrub down – and even then it still had a yellowish appearance. Not cool.
  • The cup itself feels more flexible than the other brand I used in the past. It makes it easier to fold and insert.

From one female to another, I would say that the DivaCup is worth a try. It doesn’t cost much, and if you love it, you’ll have a monthly feminine product for many years to come.

>> Buy the DivaCup on Amazon or learn more about the Diva Cup.

Again, I’d like to thank Diva Cup for providing me with the review product. Thanks!

*The product was provided free for review, but all words expressed are my own.

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59 Responses to The DivaCup Review

  1. Caroline Eubanks April 30, 2012 at 3:16 pm #

    I think that once you go Diva Cup, you can’t go back to tampons! I never will.

  2. kaitlyn August 15, 2012 at 9:48 pm #

    i thought the diva cup was such a good idea! i could not wait to try it. so i went to the mall and got one. and paid way to much for it!! for anyone that was not got one buy it online for way less then in a store. like i said i love the idea of the civa cup would make it so much greener and easy to travel and live life! but i dont know if its just me but i cant “use” it right. i found it very hard to get in in and out and it was quit painful for me to use. i made sure i got the right size 1 the smaller one but still no luck. so for now i have giving up. did anyone less and a hard time trying to use this cup? i tried to look online to get some help but people just told me to fold it a different way and that helped a bit. any tips and stuff like that would be so helpful thank you! i really want to use this because it would be so small to pack and i paid way to much for it! im starting to think maybe i sould buy another kind of cup?!

    • Brooke August 15, 2012 at 11:56 pm #

      I feel your pain on the in/out part. It can feel a bit pinchy for me sometimes, too, but it only lasts a few seconds. For the in aspect… have you tried using a bit of lubricant on the lip of the cup? I’ve found that can make the process a little smoother/quicker. Be sure to pinch the cup as hard as you can so it’s as small as possible. Also, when getting out, I pull it out a bit so I have a better grasp and then pinch (as far back as I can reach) and tilt the cup slightly, doing my best to try and make the exit size smaller.

      This is getting to be a little TMI!!! haha

      How long have you used it by the way? I feel like it’s gotten easier over time. Maybe give it a whirl on a few more cycles?

      **NOTE: The Diva Cup site says to not use a lubricant on the cup – my bad! They suggest ONLY water as some chemicals can mess with the DC composition.**

    • Jay-Jay May 28, 2013 at 2:01 am #

      Divacup is one of the most problematic brands for many as it’s a long, firm and fairly narrow brand – with over 30 brands available it’s worth doing some research to find which brand is likely best for you, I recommend medium-sized/medium-flexibility cups like Mooncup.

      I’ve used menstrual cups for 10 years, brands I’ve used have been: Mooncup, Lunette, Femmecup, MeLuna, Ladycup, Divacup – I couldn’t use the Divacup at all, even after using a cup for years this particular brand was too uncomfortable to use.

  3. kaitlyn August 16, 2012 at 5:28 pm #

    thanks brooke for getting back to me so fast and all the tips! and i have only used it a few times and because it didnt work so well i stoped. but with your tips ill try again because i really do want to use the diva cup it would make things so much easyer in the long run!

    • K October 25, 2012 at 1:27 pm #

      You will need to use it more than a few times to get the hang of it. The first cycle I used it, it was difficult, but the second was a breeze. It does take a while to get used to, but once it’s comfortable, it’s amazing and you’ll never go back to tampons.

      To prevent discomfort, be sure to trim the tip, but only once you have a hang of taking it out. Than can often rub the vaginal opening the wrong way and cause a pinching feeling. Also, make sure it’s in the proper place. If it sits too low in the vagina, it can be uncomfortable.

      The first time I used it, I couldn’t get it out and I was terrified! But once I got used to sticking my fingers up there and pulling it out, it’s easy.

      LOVE this product and highly recommend it!

    • Jazzmin August 31, 2013 at 3:28 pm #

      Hi. Stranger here.

      I just wanted to say, that I almost gave up to, until I discovered that I didn’t push the cup enough in. I feared that I wouldn’t be able to get it aout again. :D
      I then tried to push it as far up as I could and discovered that no matter how far I could always just push it out, until I could get a hold on the tip. So now I feel secure and push it maybe a little to far up, but it feels better in me that way. Maybe you are doing the same mistake?

  4. thepinaysolobackpacker August 22, 2012 at 3:10 am #

    i don;t think we have this in our country, my first time to see this. so thank you for sharing! i hope we have one like this here too, would love to try it!

  5. Chels October 9, 2012 at 1:55 am #

    I love your review of this cup! I also use it so I wanted to see what your thoughts were on something like this. I also love this and recommend it whenever I can (which is sometimes weird for people :P) You’re very thorough and informative I can’t wait to read your other reviews.

  6. Azza D October 13, 2012 at 1:26 am #

    I would actually recommend getting Implanon, the birth control implant. It lasts for 3 years, can be removed anytime and many women get fewer and reduced periods or even stop getting their period at all while on it. I haven’t had my period in over 3 years and it’s amazing being able to travel without having to worry about that time of the month at all! The best part is, I also don’t get any PMS symptoms. I recently spoke to another girl who is big on trekking in remote parts of the world and the entire reasons he got Implanon was so she could avoid the annoyance of having to deal with it while trekking through Guatamala!

    • Brooke October 14, 2012 at 1:22 am #

      Great tip, Azza!

  7. Heather October 13, 2012 at 6:47 am #

    I friggin’ love my Diva cup! People who don’t use a cup think it’s gross, but it is way cleaner than pads or tampons. Just wash that baby out- no trash to deal with!

  8. kaitlyn October 18, 2012 at 10:27 pm #

    hey Brooke! looks like a lot of girls are loving your great reviews! Something I thought you may like to try to do a review on is Lunapads! I don’t know if you have ever heard of them before? But they are cloth re-useable pads. I have 4 now and will be getting a few more and I love them! If you go to this link can you get one for free: http://lunapads.com/free-pantyliner-sample.html you just pay for your Shipping & Handling. I just thought you might like to give it a go! And Dr. Bronner’s Magic Soaps you have talked about work great for washing them up!

    • Brooke October 24, 2012 at 4:50 am #

      Hey Kaitlyn – found this in my spam! Yes, have heard of lunapads and would like to try the pantyliners. Thanks for the tip!

  9. Alexandra November 25, 2012 at 9:57 pm #

    I loooveee my diva cup!! Great for the environment and Im always prepared!! Takes a little getting used to but I am so happy I did!

  10. Hannah December 21, 2012 at 2:12 am #

    Ah yes! The Diva cup is the bomb diggity!!! ;) I LOOOVVEE mine! So much cleaner, and greener! ;)

    • Brooke December 21, 2012 at 9:53 am #

      Indeed! We also think it’s the bomb diggity! :)

  11. Stephanie December 29, 2012 at 4:20 am #

    Ok, so for the girls who are wondering if anyone else has problems with a cup . . . It took me about 6 months of frustration to figure out how to use it and not leak. Now, I will not go back. Those six months however, were torture. I hated the thing. You are not alone. You will get it. Just keep trying.

    • Brooke December 29, 2012 at 11:46 pm #

      Wow 6 months?! I’m so happy that you stuck with it – they are SO much better than tampons. I never have to worry now. Thanks for the encouragement and for sharing your story with us!

  12. Isabel December 31, 2012 at 8:36 am #

    Would using a vaginal wash like Vagisil or Summer’s Eve when cleaning this product be encouraged?

    • Brooke January 2, 2013 at 11:25 am #

      Hmm I can’t imagine that would be bad for it, but I would check with the makers of the Diva Cup to be sure. :)

  13. Mariah January 6, 2013 at 12:46 am #

    This is honestly the best purchase I’ve made in a long time!
    Liners and tampons would sometimes give me a rash, I’m really sensitive to chemicals; and I also hated throwing so much stuff out every month.
    I have had the diva cup for a year now and I NEVER need to wear liners; I have a set of undies that I use on my period just in case but it hardly ever leeks once you get the hang of it.
    It’s comfortable and so relieving to think that you’ll never have to estimate how much supplies you need or run out of it.
    Just pack your Diva Cup and you’re good to go ^^
    (I honestly can’t say enough about it)

    • Brooke January 6, 2013 at 11:13 pm #

      Awesome, Mariah! We love the Diva Cup so it’s always amazing to hear from other traveling ladies that feel the same!

      • Kathryn January 8, 2013 at 7:05 pm #

        I am getting ready to travel to thailand, and should be getting my period ANY DAY! I purchased the diva cup on the recommendation of many friends, i do however worry about rinsing it with water that i have been told not even to brush my teeth with. Has anyone had an issues with this? There is always bottled water, but I would rather use as little of that as possible.

        • Brooke January 10, 2013 at 4:39 am #

          I use bottled water for that when I’m in places with questionable water. It actually doesn’t take much to rinse it, then a quick wipe with tissues before reinserting. You can then boil at the end of your cycle. Plus, bottled water is fairly cheap in places like Thailand. Buy a big bottle for your room and refill smaller bottles as you go.

          • Nim January 19, 2013 at 4:53 am #

            I’m glad you mentioned about washing it with bottled water. I took the cup backpacking once and felt like it was kind of a PITA to wash it with my precious trail water.

            Has anyone got experience on hikes, perhaps using wipes or something? I’m planning a months-long hike and that’s a big logistic no one seems to talk much about.

            I must say on shorter hikes it’s awesome because you don’t have to watch the clock and worry about TSS or what’s brewing “down there”.

          • Jay-Jay May 28, 2013 at 2:10 am #

            In reply to Nim,

            You could use antibacterial wipes, however you’d still need to use water to rinse it off before insertion otherwise you’d introducing chemicals into your genitals which is all sorts of bad. Bare in mind that you can occasionally just empty and reinsert, as unpleasant as that sounds the blood is from your genitals anyway and as the cup doesn’t harbour or encourage bacterial growth the risk is minimal.

            Personally I do a lot of off-roading in the California and Nevada deserts, where water is a precious commodity – what little water it takes is worth avoiding the trouble and health risks you’d be faced with if using tampons or pads.

  14. Cassie February 4, 2013 at 10:36 pm #

    I feel so disappointed reading all these– I bought a Diva Cup before joining the Peace Corps, thinking I didn’t want to deal with the host of products one needs otherwise, but wearing it made me feel dreadful! It isn’t that it’s uncomfortable or pinches, but that I end up nauseated and feverish when I wear it. I cleaned and boiled it appropriately and all, so I never have figured out what the deal was. I brought it along with me to country, but never ended up using it during my service. Now I’m planning some long travel this summer and want to get bold enough to give it another go, but I’m not so sure it’s worth it. Has anyone else experienced anything similar? Any success stories?

    • Brooke February 4, 2013 at 10:54 pm #

      If it were me, I would try again. If I felt nauseated/feverish, I would discontinue use and see a doctor. It’s made of medical grade silicone, so it seems very strange to have an allergy — maybe something else is going on down there that needs to be assessed. In the end, it could be an allergy, but it’s not common with silicone (from what I’ve read). You could try a Keeper Cup, made of different material or a soft cup (softcup.com), also made of different material I think.

      Good luck!

    • Jay-Jay May 28, 2013 at 2:05 am #

      I commented above that Divacup is a problematic brand for some given how firm, narrow and long the brand is – try a different brand. To me it sounds like the firmness of Divacup may be the problem, so perhaps try a softer brand – Ladycup is very flexible (I suggest the larger size as the small size is tiny), or a soft MeLuna (medium, large or extra-large – also soft or medium firmness) which is also made from TPE rather than silicone and one of the cheaper brands on the market.

      I also always suggest going to the menstrual cup support community on livejournal to check-out tags, FQA’s and ask your own questions for help picking a suitable cup that doesn’t cause problems.

    • b.g. May 8, 2014 at 7:10 pm #

      hi Cassie –

      i know this post is from a long time ago, but i came across it & thought that if you’ve not solved the problem, there may be something to consider: have you ever consulted a doctor regarding the possibility of your having an allergy to silicone, or to rubber in general? the Diva Cup is made from surgery-grade silicone, so if you do have an allergy to the material it may explain some of your symptoms.

      as has been mentioned in a few other posts, there exists a variety of cup brands. some brands do not manufacture their cups from silicone, but instead use alternative materials, such as other varieties of rubber or even plastic. it may be wise to try to use the Diva Cup again in a home (rather than travel) setting in order to rule out possibility of other variables that could cause you discomfort; then, if your experience is no better than before, research & try out a cup or two made from something other than silicone. (Diva Cup works comfortably for me, & as it was the first brand i tried, i’ve no experience with any other brand or any material other than silicone – so, i can’t give any specific advice as to what’s worth trying.)

  15. Mellisa July 28, 2013 at 9:24 am #

    Wow! I’m in Australia and have never heard of these types of products. What an eye opener ! Lol. Ps We do have applicator tampons :)

    • Brooke July 28, 2013 at 10:30 am #

      Applicator tampons are harder to find in Australia, but that’s OK because I prefer the Cup! Give it a try :D

  16. W. August 23, 2013 at 5:15 pm #

    I’m a big fan of the Diva cup, used it for many years but currently am not using it for a variety of reasons, the main one being I burned up my last one when I left it unattended while boiling to sanitize on the stove and the water all evaporated.

    Just wanted to chime in and say that for me the Diva cup was never completely leak proof as some people exclaim about. I tend to have a heavy flow and when the cup was full, it would leak a bit so I always combine the cup with a reusable pad, like a luna pad (which I LOVEEEE). At first I felt a bit frustrated that the cup “wasn’t working” completely but then figured it was such a huge improvement to use one light pad all day instead of a million without the cup.

    I also struggled with washing the cup where water was not safe to drink. It was obnoxious to have to either bring special water into the bathroom or take the cup into the kitchen to find clean water and as a result I often ended up just wiping it down and reinserting. But beware! I did end up with a horribly uncomfortable bacterial infection which I think was due to a variety of causes including not washing the cup often enough but also being stuck wearing the same pad over a longer than expected international plane trip, not being able to shower/change clothes, etc. Needless to say after that I became much more dedicated to washing the cup regularly.

    • Steph September 25, 2013 at 4:06 pm #

      Thanks so much for pointing out that all cups must be washed with POTABLE water. This can limit their use when traveling in the developing world but the best way to clean them is to boil them for a few minutes which cleans the water so problem solved if you have access to a stove and aren’t shy :)

  17. Stephanie September 26, 2013 at 5:49 am #

    Okay, I always thought these things were extremely strange before, but now looking at them (and knowing the risks of tampons and my body), I am considering using the Diva Cup. I’m going to get a little TMI here for a minute, but I get UTIs very often! I keep myself clean, wipe properly, and everything, but I feel like between my periods, my body is completely out of whack chemically. I feel like switching to either a cup or the sea sponge type tampons might help me out with these things.

    Can you comfortably sleep in a Diva Cup without it leaking or falling out? Does it irritate your skin at all? If you have any experience with sea sponge tampons, how do you feel about those? Any leaking? Thanks in advance for any help! I’m super worried about trying anything new out in case it irritates my body at all. I will definitely be talking with my doctor about all of my options.

    • Brooke September 27, 2013 at 12:58 am #

      Hi Stephanie – Welcome, and don’t worry, we aren’t afraid of getting a little TMI here. We’re all women and all have similar issues and concerns :)

      We LOVE the Diva Cup here. You will sleep without noticing a thing. The cup creates a slight suction inside, so it will never just fall out — and leaking is something you will probably only experience if you don’t put it in properly. Seriously, I worry incessantly about stuff like this with tampons, but the Cup gives me peace of mind! When you first start out, I would recommend wearing a thin pad – just in case. It will probably take a couple cycles before you have the system down and understand how it benefits you. Give it time and chances are you won’t go back!

      In regards to the Sea Sponge Tampons, check this post out –> http://herpackinglist.com/2012/01/sea-sponge-tampons/ Haven’t used them myself, but maybe she can help you out.

      I cannot comment on the UTI issuein particular. Best of luck!

      • Stephanie September 27, 2013 at 4:15 am #

        I ordered mine from Amazon. I should be getting it in the next couple of days, and I’m excited to try it out! I’m hoping I get the hang of it fast. However, I do have a mental image of walking into the house and finding my boyfriend using it as a sink/tub stopper. Or a dog toy. Sigh.

        I will reply again to let you know how it all goes! I’m also going to talk with my doctor about it on Monday, so I may have some information from her for everyone. Thanks for the help! =]

  18. Kaylin September 27, 2013 at 8:31 pm #

    I just recently bought a Moon cup (another type of menstrual cup similar to a Diva Cup) and I LOVE it. I was definitely a skeptic when I heard about cups; I thought it sounded gross and couldn’t possibly be any more convenient than tampons… I was so wrong! I also wanted to use less tampon/pad waste, which was the main reason I bought it despite being skeptical. I started using it a few days ago when my cycle started, and the first day was a little rough getting used to how to insert and remove it, but once you figure it out, it’s a breeze! (the first time I tried to remove it I couldn’t get it out for like 15 minutes and was freaking out… turns out it was just too slippery; I wrapped one finger in TP for some grip and it came right out). It hasn’t leaked once! I have been very careful about cleaning it out completely (washing in the sink with soap and water) before reinserting it though because I have a history of yeast infections. I have a pretty heavy flow and only need to empty it 2-3 times a day on the first two heaviest days, as opposed to changing a super tampon every 2-3 hours on those days. I did have to trim the stem some because it was too long and stuck outside of me even when the cup was fully inserted. Also, I don’t know if this is due to the cup or not, but I have had much less cramping this cycle than is usual. In short, menstrual cups are awesome and I thank you for recommending them to other women!

    • Anne Helmers December 3, 2013 at 2:26 pm #

      I took disposable soft cups with me on our RTW trip…They had less expensive disposable but reusable cup for up to one menstrual period. It worked great and considering I was often using bottled water and hiking through the jungles of Borneo or the Amazon rainforest I was really glad to throw it out after an adventure. It was the best of both worlds. I packed 20 in my bag for the ten months and they were great! Just another option…No Tampons available in much of South East Asia so you need to get a cup if you don’t want to use pads!

      • Brooke December 9, 2013 at 10:29 pm #

        Thanks for sharing Anne! If you ever feel like writing a review of the soft cups for HPL, please send me an email. We would all be interested in learning more about them. Cheers!

    • Kaylin July 25, 2014 at 6:47 am #

      Update on my mooncup: I accidentally murdered it today! Left it boiling on the stove and it died a fiery death (not literally, didn’t actually catch on fire, but it did heat to the point it was cracking and a bit melty and thus now unusable). I had it for about 10 months total, and I am planning to order a new cup (going to try the Diva Cup this time) soon.

      Good things over the 10 months:
      – It’s SO convenient. You can leave it in much longer than tampons (upwards of 12 hours rather than tampons max 8hrs). Super easy to sleep in and no worries about leaks like with a tampon or pad while sleeping. You only have to change it 2-3 times a day, even if you have a heavy-ish flow.
      – of course less waste and less money spent on disposables
      – I continue to have less crampy periods than I did before switching from mainly using tampons. In my opinion, when the tampons suck up all the moisture in your vagina that is (partially) what is causing cramps. Since the cup doesn’t affect your moisture, it helps! Using a cup unfortunately has NOT affected my other period symptoms, such as extreme fatigue, but I’ll take what I can get. Not having punch-to-the-gut style cramps definitely helps!

      Negatives:
      – As I said in the previous post, the stem was much too long for me on the moon cup (one of the reasons I want to try the Diva this time, as the stem seems alot shorter). I cut it, and it was a fine length then, but the stem was hollow and became super hard to clean. I suffered a couple of vaginal infections in the past 10 months and I suspect it was partly due to bacteria getting trapped in the hollow stem opening.
      – It became extremely discolored to a dried blood sort of color, which looks pretty disgusting to be honest. This happened almost immediately, like after the first use it looked like this and never would go back to the clear color. I’m hoping the Diva Cup will be different as Brooke mentioned in the article hers did not discolor unlike another cup she used.

  19. Donnie February 4, 2014 at 12:16 am #

    For doubters: They ARE great!
    They do take some practice, but are SOOOOO worth it.
    I found that I have to change mine mid night on the first night.
    The cliche is that they change your lifestyle at that time of the month: they certainly do! Even a tampon user will experience the difference in freedom these give.
    I only wish I had purchased one years ago when I did cheerleading. Would have been so much less self-conscious.
    When travelling, just take a bottle of drinking water – what you probably do already anyway. Very Easy!

  20. Kirby March 2, 2014 at 8:31 am #

    I love my Lunette, its meant to be softer than the diva cup for those who’ve had problems (and is easy to access in Australia too)

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