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I am wondering why some menstrual cup companies don't sell cups in different sizes for different cervix lengths. Granted, some companies do, but it baffles me why others don't. Isn't the purpose of the different brands of cups to offer other cup dimensions (and, in the case of the LilyCup Compact and Femmycycle, features)? By pandering to the "one size fits all" mindset, a company will be missing out on potential profit if customers decide to get another company's cup because that cup actually fits their cervix. I've never understood why companies offer multiple sizes with different diameters, but not multiple sizes with different lengths. Can anyone explain this?
 
..::bella vita::..por_que_no on March 3rd, 2015 02:06 am (UTC)
I think cup companies should hire you! :)

I think it might be 2 things--most people don't know where their cervix is, and some with a high cervix (for example) might need short cup + long stem (Si-Bell), but others might need long cup + shorter stem (Diva). I am in the first group--my pubic bone sits pretty high so I need a shortish cup with a super long stem, or my pubic bone crushes the base and I lose some capacity. But overall your idea is a great one.
Sarcasticia Nitpickersontisiphone on March 3rd, 2015 02:29 am (UTC)
There are a number of reasons it could be. (I am not a cup manufacturer or a representative thereof, just someone who does industry analysis for a living :)

* First, cost and profit. Menstrual cups are a niche market (thinly spread, special interest product), which means that the total volume of cups sold isn't actually very high for any one manufacturer, except maybe the big players like Diva and Mooncup.This affects how many cup models a manufacturer could reasonably offer. First, they need to design the new cup and have moulds made for tooling. To give you an idea, a relatively small single custom mould for silicone moulding can cost £1,000 or more, TPE moulds are even more expensive, and design costs vary widely. Add in the additional inventory costs (since small cup manufacturers would have a hard time doing JIT), and competition factors (below), and it rapidly becomes unprofitable for manufacturers to do it.

* Second, market differentiation. The total number of cup brands is relatively large for a small market and is growing. Each of these brands is trying to differentiate itself in some way, and there's only a limited number of characteristics cups really have. Making multiple sizes of a particular cup isn't really a differentiator, since users really only need one size at a time. Cup manufacturers will get far more mileage from cause-related marketing (Rubycup), a funky shape (Lilycup), a pretty box (CupLee), or a range of fun colours and stiffnesses (Meluna) than they will from different lengths, and most of those are way more easy to design, too.

* Third, for the most part one size does fit all, more or less. Although a lot of people in this community buy more than one cup seeking a Goldilocks fit, that's not necessarily true for most cup users. Although in theory differences in cervix height, flow, and so on affect how a cup works, in practice a lot of users are used to imperfect menstrual products - they'll use the one they've got, revert to backup, or just ditch it instead of spending another 40 bucks on something that didn't work the first time.

Shorter: Just because there might be unmet demand for something, doesn't mean manufacturers can make it in a profitable way. Also, across all brands in the market there are actually very few gaps with unmet demand. Add this to a small business-driven niche market, and it doesn't make sense for most manufacturers to do it.

Edited at 2015-03-03 02:32 am (UTC)
Jennifer Monoteasy2begreen on March 4th, 2015 08:45 pm (UTC)
Fascinating analysis, thank you! And good point about how most cups are pretty close to one-size-fits-most. I have multiple cups, and while some work a little better than others (slightly more comfortable, less prone to leaking), I could definitely have stopped with the first cup I bought. This board might well give the impression that it's hard to find the right cup, but I think most people who are reasonably happy with their cup never find their way to this board at all.
Sarcasticia Nitpickersontisiphone on March 4th, 2015 08:47 pm (UTC)
I'm glad it was helpful :)
..::bella vita::..por_que_no on March 5th, 2015 04:49 pm (UTC)
Maybe, but I am definitely not that one-cup-fits-most person, since I have the World Trade Cervix!
Jennifer Monoteasy2begreen on March 6th, 2015 03:27 pm (UTC)
And yet we have a couple of cups in common -- Rainbow and Diva, which work fine for both an average height cervix and a World Trade one. :-)
..::bella vita::..por_que_no on March 7th, 2015 03:50 pm (UTC)
In the past couple days I've had real difficulty reaching both my Rainbow and Si-Bell though! I really wish the Rainbow had another half centimeter on the stem! (I don't actually own a Diva--too firm and short--I have the iCare, which has about 10-15cm more stem on it and is a lot softer)