Many people start using menstrual cups because of environmental interest, or because of the economic value over disposable methods. Others like the convenience of not having to find tampons or pads when their period starts, or have health concerns about using tampons. While these reasons, and others, factored in to my choice of menstrual cups, none of them would have been enough to convince me on their own without one factor: I severely hate using tampons and pads. Tampons make my vagina feel swollen and sore to the point I can't even insert them after a day or two of use, and no matter what I did I was never able to consistently use pads without leaking. I have a friend who has been using a DivaCup for years and loves it, so after a failed experience with InSteads (mostly problems with leaking), I started researching other cups.
I chose the small MeLuna because I have a very light period, especially when I'm on birth control, and because I have a narrow vagina and very sensitive skin in that area. The ball stem made a lot of sense to me since I know that normal stems cause irritation to some cup users, and I chose blue, well, because it's my favorite color. I spent a few days playing around with it and trying out different folds--what I ultimate found to be the most effective for me was the 7 fold. I wore pads for my first cycle with it, and after an easy learning curve and no leaking even at the beginning, I started using them exclusively, though I still sometimes use cloth pads on my last few very light days. Since I have such a light period, even on my heavier days I can wear my cup for a full 12 hours or more without leaking.
Several months ago, I started using the NuvaRing as my birth control, and after a few days of practice, removing and reinserting my cup with the NuvaRing in has become a very simple act, and I still have no leaking as a result of it. I have also had my periods become lighter and cramp less since using my cup and ring in conjunction.
Unlike other menstrual cups, MeLuna cups are made from TPE plastic. While I do not have experience with silicone cups to compare it with, the material of the cup seems to be holding up quite well, though I have noticed staining start to develop. I generally clean my cup very well with soap and hot water, and boil it every two or three months, and I'm curious to see if a Hydrogen Peroxide bath or two might help with this, but it is something to keep in mind if you want a MeLuna.
Despite some early concerns, using my cup causes me absolutely no discomfort (unless I don't break the seal while removing it). When my cervix is especially high, it does take a little more time to remove, but I have gotten used to it and it's a minor inconvenience compared to the annoyance and pain I experienced with disposables. The upside to my cup riding high is that I am able to have sex while on my period with basically no issues, and my boyfriend says he can only sometimes feel it during intercourse, though it does not bother him.
I think my biggest unexpected benefit of using a menstrual cup is when I'm away from home. Since starting use, I have had several last-minute overnight visits and longer stays with my family, and (of course) they always have to happen right when I'm having my period. It's really nice not to have to worry about whether or not I packed enough pads, or having to improvise when I'm caught without and can't get to the store (the NuvaRing is convenient for the same reasons). Also, I'm currently living with my boyfriend's family, and having one less thing for his very nosy mom to get in my business about is a bit of a relief.
So overall, I very much love my MeLuna, and my period, though it has never been too difficult, is now barely an inconvenience. I know this was a bit long, but hopefully it will be helpful, or at least interesting, for some of you. Questions or insights are more than welcome.