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Hi all!

I'm new to the menstrual cup world and have absolutely fallen in LOVE with using Instead Soft Cups! So much better than using pads, especially for sleeping. Anyways, in my reading of reviews online, I've noted that Soft Cups seem to have gotten a bad rap for mainly two reasons, so I just wanted to pass on a few things I have learned that seem to pretty much alleviate the issues.

1. Difficulty removing the cup / it's stuck.
My solution: First things first, relax, breathe, don't panic. Spread your knees nice and wide, in a sitting position. Take your time and gently hook your finger under the ring, coming up from the bottom. Pull firmly, but slowly, gently, and evenly. Let your body mold around it as its coming out. If you yank it out or try to grab from the top of the rim, it is going to feel unpleasant and make a huge mess.

2. The mess of disposing of a blood-filled cup.
My solution: When you open the wrapper, rip along one edge and then fold a single paper towel square and tuck it inside the wrapper. Stick the little packet you just made in your purse or pocket and when it is time to remove the Soft Cup, just use the paper towel to wipe any blood off your finger and bunch/fold the paper towel square into/around the used Soft Cup. (Paper towel absorbs large amounts of blood better than TP.) Slide the whole thing into your empty wrapper and voila! Mess free disposal and clean fingers.
 
Kai: 2Cupskuradi8 on March 18th, 2015 07:01 pm (UTC)
The only reason that they are called "disposable" is so that you will use them once, throw them away and buy more, and more, and more...

It is perfectly OK to wash and re-use them.

Take one out, pop a clean one in, then wash the one you just took out for next time.

They will last multiple cycles and with reasonable care, you can probably get a year out of two of them.
tonilacross on March 19th, 2015 07:17 pm (UTC)
Thank you for passing on that information. While I completely admire users that reuse and wash their menstrual products...

At this point, the fact that they are disposable is the whole reason that I bought soft cups. I was personally turned off by other more traditional cups, such as the diva cup. Some people (like me) don't like the thought of having to wash menstrual products and reuse them, especially in public locations. (Is that a ridiculously silly privileged 1st world mindset that I have? Possibly.)

As far as waste is concerned, I figure that especially seeing I have a heavy flow, using 2 soft cups a day is still way way less waste than the 4-6 heavy maxi pads I was plowing through in 24 hours. And seeing my period ranges from 7-21 days in length... yeah.

Maybe at some point I will buy the more durable soft cups that are actually designed for reuse. Maybe someday I will get less squeamish and not mind washing them out. Maybe I will get more comfortable with this whole process by using the disposables and eventually switch to a different, more easily reusable time. For now, I'm very happy with having a use and toss product that is convenient for my workplace and lifestyle and isn't as big of a waste as pads.
trejoytrejoy on March 18th, 2015 09:43 pm (UTC)
Interesting that some people have trouble removing those. I could never get one to stay inserted!
tonilacross on March 19th, 2015 07:18 pm (UTC)
Really? That's interesting... I wonder if you didn't have it in far enough?
trejoytrejoy on March 20th, 2015 04:14 am (UTC)
This is when it was called Instead (about 7-ish years ago), and trust me, it would not go in any further. The cup was much too wide, all it did was leak and try to work its way out!
trejoytrejoy on March 20th, 2015 04:39 am (UTC)
According to THIS POST they made changes a few years ago.
tonilacross on March 20th, 2015 02:14 pm (UTC)
Ohhhh, that makes way more sense! :-) Well, good to know they changed it for the better.
..::bella vita::..por_que_no on March 19th, 2015 01:25 pm (UTC)
I think the biggest issue that users of reusable cups have with the Insteads is the environmental waste that results from disposing of them as the company tells you to (but like Kuradi said--they are totally reusable as long as you take care of them).

Additionally, since the diameter of the Insteads is rather large, and they are inserted while folded, they require the user to have a pretty high cervix. The one time I tried one, I could barely even fit the whole thing in, and I'm the one always joking about my World Trade Cervix. Seems most other users can't even fit them inside.
tonilacross on March 19th, 2015 07:23 pm (UTC)
Yeah... see my response to trejoy on that... I wasn't really looking for a reusable product. At least, not yet. I might get braver later.

I could be wrong... but I think a big part of that is people not getting them in far enough or at the right angle. They are inserted in a completely different way than other menstrual cups and don't actually belong in the same position as say, a diva cup, at all. It's a really tight fit... til you get to a certain point and then it slides into place and stays.

At least, that's my experience. Now, granted, maybe I just have a cervix for which soft cups were designed lol. It's definitely true that no two bodies are cookie cutter alike...
Kathlynekathlyne on March 19th, 2015 04:53 pm (UTC)
I just want to add that all other menstrual cups are different from the Instead cups. They look and fit differently.

If the Insteads work for you, that's great, but someday you might want to check out the other menstrual cups.