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Hi there everyone! I'm a 23 y/o Asian girl and I've been using menstrual cup for about half a year now. I have to say I cannot be happier since I made the transition. So here's some details & personal experiences I'd like to share as a reference to help you beginners out there! Particularly Asians because I believe many would have the impression that menstrual cups might be too big for our petite build, like I did before I started using them. But they're NOT!

My Details:
Height: 163cm
Weight: 45kg
Cup I'm using: small Yuuki (view comparison HERE)
Period flow: Medium (On heavy days 3-4 big pads, 3rd day onwards 2 big pads or less)
Period flow in ml: On heavy days a little bit more than 10ml (after 8-10 hours)
Frequency of emptying cup: On heavy days 1-2 times, 3rd day onwards only once a day) 
Folding method: C-fold & more often Punch-down fold (refer to this VIDEO)
Cleaning method: Warm water & normal soap (Dove, shokubutsu...etc)
Cervical position during menstruation: LOW - Approx. 5cm from the vagina opening (tip of middle finger to 1st knuckle)


My experience:
1 - 3 months: 
- Insertion & removal was pretty tough & time consuming
- Couldn't get cup to pop open properly, removal was painful due to suction
- Cup didn't sit well inside, it was uncomfortable and I also felt pressure on my bladder 
- Minor leakage, esp after sitting down for a long time

4 - 6 months:
- Insertion & removal became second nature
- Figured out cervical position manually (with finger) and it SO helped me with positioning the cup to avoid leakage & discomfort!
- Almost zero leakage, occasional spotting that comes from residual on the wall outside of cup

My advice for first timers:
The importance of knowing your cervix:
- During menstruation your cervix is stiffer and lower with a pointed shape, and it feels something like the tip of your nose.
- Locate your cervical position during menstruation, this helps you decide on the length of cup that will suit your body best (low cervix: short cup / high cervix: long cup) and it also tells you exactly where you want your cup to be angled towards.
- You also wanna make sure that the cup is not opening up next to your cervix, pressing against it or way past it, the cup should pop open directly underneath your cervix, then you can either push it up a bit more or just leave it as it is.
- Keep in mind that pushing the cup in too much might cause the cervix to take up space in the cup and lead to leakage.

How to decide on cup size (long/short/wide/narrow) & stiffness:
- If you have never conceived before, go for a narrower/smaller cup. I'm sexually active but a small cup stays in there just fine.
- A longer/wider cup gives you more capacity & vice versa.
- Some say a softer cup is harder to pop open, I have yet to try it so I'll make a review on it once I've tried out my soft MeLuna!

Inserting & removing tips:
On your 1st try I would seriously recommend you doing it at a private bathroom at home, or before period as things can get quite messy! 
VIDEOS by Melissa


INSERTING:
1. Relaxing your muscles helps the cup to pop open more easily.
2. Cup should always be angled towards your backbone not straight up!
3. Personally I let the cup pop open before it's fully in, then slowly push in to ensure that it doesn't pop open after my cervix.
4. Don't worry if the cup doesn't pop open right after you let go of the fold, mess around with it a bit (twist, push etc). Sometimes it takes a few seconds for it to pop open on its own, so be patient!
5. Twist the cup and use 1 finger to circle around the cup as close you can to the rim to make sure it's fully sealed & most importantly, cupping your cervix.


REMOVING:
1. Think pooping when removing the cup, give it a slight push until you can grab the stem/ball/ring.
2. Slowly nudge it out in a zig-zag motion (NEVER PULL FAST unless you like the pain).
3. Reach one finger in to break the seal by pushing the cup inwards, while the other hand holds on to the stem/ball/ring.
4. Once seal is broken, slowly pull the cup out & downwards to keep the blood in.
5. Empty the cup, wash it & you're done!


Just sharing with yall what I know. Might have left out some tips but this is generally it...and there're plenty of tutorials out there so all you need is some time to do the research, and some guts to make the transition! Anyways, HOPE THIS HELPS! :) Go cups!

PS. just bought a small soft MeLuna & mini soft MeLuna and I can't wait to make a review once I've tried them out! BIG THANKS to Melissa for the awesome reviews, photos & videos!!


 
susannah: claw learn about each otherfragilemacabre on March 15th, 2012 02:30 pm (UTC)
I think you will want to edit "women," because not all cup users identify as female and this community has rules in place about gender-neutral language. This is pretty useful for all cup users, not just Asian ones (though I'm sure that there are misconceptions because of what you said, I wonder how much of it is actually rooted in science).</p>

Could you maybe put this under a cut, too? It's a little long (although useful!).

gocups88 on March 15th, 2012 02:52 pm (UTC)
Ah ok my bad, will remove the word 'women' then i guess..and I didn't realize my post was that long! LOL will try my best and cut it short! Nice to know you find it useful! :)
susannah: ravenclaw 42fragilemacabre on March 15th, 2012 03:04 pm (UTC)
Just put it under an LJ-cut (it's in the FAQ if you aren't sure how) and you don't need to make it any shorter! It puts it under a link so anyone who wants to read it can expand the text :)

Here be the FAQ about it: http://www.livejournal.com/support/faqbrowse.bml?faqid=75

Edited at 2012-03-15 03:08 pm (UTC)
gocups88 on March 15th, 2012 04:17 pm (UTC)
Cool thanks for the info! Sorry for not reading the Info & Rules before posting!

Edited at 2012-03-15 04:34 pm (UTC)
juliiie87juliiie87 on March 17th, 2012 11:36 am (UTC)
Thank you for taking the time to gather all those tips, they are certainly useful. Just a few comments though :

- 5 cm is a rather medium cervix height, considering that some people decribe their cervix as being "just there" at 1 or 2 cm.

- I don't think that 10ml a day on your heaviest day can be considered medium, since it's close to what I get, and I'm on the pill, I'd say it's pretty light overall. I think I saw a chart about this, but anyway, it's all subjective since everyone's different. One thing I know for sure : the vagina is flexible, so if someone has a heavy flow, they should definitely get a large cup.

- I'm not Asian myself, but the idea that asian people are all tiny with tiny genitals hum... sounds a little racist to me. It would be like me saying european girls are smaller than american girls. I could say that from general experience, but that doesn't make it science. And most importantly, the way you are built on the outside says nothing about the size of your genitals !
gocups88 on March 17th, 2012 12:42 pm (UTC)
My pleasure! Yeap I agree most measuring terms are subjective, that's why I put in brackets the details.

As for Asians thinking we might have smaller organs in general, it doesn't mean we're racist or anything. If all our body parts works in proportion (size of fist = size of heart etc..) then it would actually make sense that our genitals are probably smaller too.

Whenever I recommend cups to my Asian friends their first question would always be - 'aren't those cups made for western people though?' That tells me they're afraid of the size being too big for our build. Please don't get me wrong - I am not saying all Asians have a petite build, of course some of us are bigger but the general Asian population as a matter of fact is smaller in size compared to Western people.

The reason I'm sharing my experience with cups is to give Asian users confidence and insight to another Asian using menstrual cups, and to keep them aware that - like you said, 'the way you are built on the outside says nothing about the size of your genitals' :)
juliiie87juliiie87 on March 17th, 2012 09:58 pm (UTC)
I understand that you weren't purposefully being predjudiced against your own people. I agree that it's important to point out false beliefs.

I'm just tired of people of all background coming to this community swearing their bodies are too small or too "tight" to fit a cup, when it's just a common misconception about how this part of the body works. The idea that women are supposed to be tight, unless they are loose, i.e. have too much sex, gets on my nerves. I just wouldn't want to make it worse by spreading the idea that ANYONE because of their ethnicity or built or whatever, could possibly have more trouble using a cup.

Anyway, keep spreading the good word ! :)

Edited at 2012-03-17 09:59 pm (UTC)