Sunday, September 13, 2009

Eco-Menses Club!

After the several posts on the DivaCup, including the awesome tips and advice from the comment section of the "Overshare" post, I vowed I would not become obsessed. However (lol), recent conversations with friends have led me to believe that we perhaps have formed some sort of cult of the DivaCup. (photo source)

Weird, but the topic of menstruation and how to deal with it actually has come up fairly often in random conversations with friends and family. Who knew that I'd actually be ok with talking about my period?? My friend H. and I were chatting last night about how we're slowly amassing a gaggle of DivaCup converts... Like a strange eco-mense club. I'm pretty sure not one of these women made the switch because of the environmental impact, but because of the convenience and superior... umm... performance (hah!).

My friend M. however, completely surprised me when she called to say she didn't make it through her first day of DivaCup awesomeness. She was so utterly disgusted by her cycle that she actually googled it to make sure it was normal. I find it sad that as women we are so socialized at such a young age to be ashamed of our cycle and to think of it as "gross" that most of us have no idea what it actually looks like in a little cup. I gave her a pep talk about how we all adjust and I'm hoping for the best.

I even converted my Tante (Aunt). Such a strange moment; I called my mom a few weeks ago and the first thing she said was that I had to talk to Tante D., who was visiting, about the DivaCup. Supposedly she had stopped by my mom's cottage to see if she had any tampons. Since mom is wonderfully paused, she only kept some for me, and she announced that I no longer use them. Tante D. was completely amazed that such a thing even existed and the conversation was pretty darn awkward, filled with her cautious questions of "I came over to ask your mother about.... feminine products" and my blunt answers of "tampons? You mean for your period?"... lol. Trying to explain what it looked like and how it worked over the phone was interesting (I'm a hand talker, so I was gesturing to the phone quite a bit... which looked awkward as I was gesturing about vaginas lol). She was pumped and said that she was going to the health food store "tomorrow" to pick up a blue cup ("Why haven't I seen this on billboards or something???").

YES! This is a quiet little revolution, kinda like a grassroots deal. I feel like such a REBEL! This morning I wondered just how much money and tampons I have saved over the past year and a half. I can calculate this, no problem. Except.... I'm having a hard time remembering just what it was LIKE using tampons. Ok, think- I probably used around 5 a day (wow, SO MUCH), so say 30 in a cycle. I bought Tampax, so average price was around 12$ CAD a month.

Over 18 months that's 216$ saved and 540 tampons prevented from the landfill. Holy poop Batman! Seriously, as a total prude when it comes to personal space and matters, I cannot believe how fantastic and easy this whole DivaCup process has been. I would never in a million years go back.

A little tidbit of info I just learned: if you have a yeast infection DivaCup indicates that you should NOT use your cup. If you do use your cup, you should replace it as they cannot guarantee that the candida bacteria can be killed by boiling, or whether a regular gal could with certainty create the right conditions (i.e. saline solution boiling). Also, if you are using topical medications you should never use your cup as it can degrade the silicone. I had no idea!

Do you have any DivaCup "Join the Cult/Club" success stories or info? Or if you'd love to try it, but are too weirded out, unsure, nervous- check out my Overshare post and the fantastic comments that ensued!



  1. Oh, I am so in the cult. I mean, club! ;) I'm obsessed with my DivaCup, too. I have had some issues with leakage for the past two months, but nothing major. I may post on it later. I just use a Lunapad on my heavy day and it's fine.

    I cannot say enough how much I love this, but I'm sad to say I have been unsuccessful in converting my friends. So far, their reactions have been disgust. Disgust?! Yes, they think it would be absolutely disgusting to pour a cup of their own blood into the toilet. I get it...but I don't get it. It's what our bodies DO, after all. How can it be disgusting? But as you said, we have been taught to be distrustful and/or downright horrified by our periods. Which makes me furious!

    I'll keep trying, though. Maybe they'll be interested when I tell them how much money they will save...

  2. P.S. My posts on the DivaCup at my blog are always the posts with the most views/clicks per day! Revolution! ;)

  3. I love my DivaCup. I feel so much healthier and cleaner than when I used tampons, and I can't imagine how much money I've saved. My husband has become quite the DivaCup apologist and has even convinced several of his coworkers to try it. One found it extra-handy when she deployed to Iraq!

  4. LOL, I'm actually wearing mine right now.

    I gotta say I'm absolutely in love with my diva cup. even if I had all the money in the world, I'd still never go back to tampons. tampons just seem so gross now. the string...ewww.

    I haven't had the courage to talk about it with friends or family members yet. they're already skeptical of my old-shirts-as-napkins-and-cleaning-cloths thing, along with using baking soda for hair-washing and deodorant (which I posted about on my blog a while ago if you're interested). sooo...maybe one day.

    yoga witch, I had leakage problems too for a couple of months, but then I realized I was inserting it too high. maybe you're doing the same?

  5. I am so being a woss but I am going to do this! But not right now... At the end of the month I shall, I need to...

    I love the way women work in things like this. We slowly spread the word because society just isn't comfortable with it all and we shall get there. Before blogging I had no idea there was even alternatives to using some nasty piece of bleached stuff...

  6. Oh, I am such a Diva Cup evangelist!!! Seriously!! I have got my co-worker pretty much converted -- sadly, she is one who is disgusted/horrified by her body so it's been a long haul. The reason I at least convinced her to try is that she gets these HORRIFIC bladder/urethral inflammatory things that have her absolutely doubled-over and miserable...interesting that they usually coincide with her period. Um, chemical irritation, anyone?

    Yeah, anyone who asks - only too happy to spread the Diva Love!!

  7. A male friend of mine actually first told me about the Diva Cup and then I read your posts. A couple other blogs I read have talked about it too. I am tempted but am not sure if I am ready…..

  8. Yoga Witch: oh no! well, I think actually that MY first reaction was there is NO way I can do that... lol. Kinda like how Over Coffee feels.
    And then I thought about it, and eventually decided that I was tired of spending the money. lol. So maybe you are just spreading the thought :)

    Vegan Burnout: hehe, my friend H.'s boyfriend is a huge DivaCup dude- Andrew has also told me that he informs his coworkers about how awesome it is too... LOL. i can just imagine the conversations.

    Underbelly: ya- I also don't have a lot of opportune moments to talk about the Divacup at work, but with friends it's pretty much alright. However, four or five years ago, when I was 22-23 yrs old....? no way. weird hey?

    Leakage eh? Perhaps it was inserted too high? or it needs to be emptied more often? I only had leakage when it didn't open.... well and when there was still some cycle left in the rest of the "canal" for it to come out after insertion.

    Rose: one day! :) and you will LOVE it. You're right, it is super cool how women can come together to work all this stuff out.

    Mel: WOOT. so interesting about the infections- thank goodness she found something that worked!

    Over Coffee: I think my biggest issue was being ok with inserting it... but then it was fine. Not having to change anything ALL DAY? SURE! Never having to buy tampons or pads?? SURE :) totally worth the weirdness 100%.

  9. Underbelly, thanks for the tip. I'll see what happens this month. I think the first time it happened, I was getting cocky, ha ha, and didn't check to make sure it had formed a seal. But I started being vigilant about that, and I still had some problems. I will definitely check to make sure it is in the right place this month.

  10. EcoYogini,

    Yes! Feed the forces! I have already converted four lovely ladies to my, um, legion, and they've convinced people too.

    I've already mentioned before how much this pretty little cup saved my ass (vagina?) when I was travelling through South America...wayyy better than carrying a backpack full of tampons and sanitary napkins.

    I admit that when I first started using mine, I was turned off by the um, "dump n' clean" (?) process, but now I really actually like knowing the amount of fluid that comes out in a day. I think it's important and healthy to have a good idea of your mentrual cycle and the flow throughout it...

    And that's MY overshare!!

  11. my sister and i decided to *go Diva* a few months ago. i'm still a little uncomfortable with the whole thing but luckily i have a light flow so i don't have to handle it much. plus i'm saving money and helping the environment. :)

  12. I love the divacup and your posts on the topic! It is a great way to get in touch with your own body....and have a few laughs about it later.

    I have told everyone about it and made several people read the section in Sleeping Naked is Green about it.

    Telling your aunt about it is the best story I have heard yet! Yay! for spreading the word.

  13. I'm going to have to try again.

    I bought one, and just couldn't get on with it. I had major problems with leaking, and just couldn't get it to seal. And it kept ummm...moving about (talk about overshare!). And yes, I bought size 2, as I've had two kids.

    So it's been sitting in my undies drawer for the best part of a year.

    I need to give it another go. But it was so disheartening, after hearing how everyone else I knew seemed to be having so much success with it.

    I feel like everyone's at a party...except me :-(


  14. I use a moon cup, (Im in the UK), they are the same thing. And I love mine! I do try to spread the word, but I have no one around me who is not freaked by the idea. Or the whole hairwashing/vinegar thing.

    Oh well. This is why we have the internet to find others like us. I will continue to try to convert others. I mean share the idea!


  15. Alex: WOOT for overshare :) I agree 100%, our cycles are important. I also have come to enjoy knowing my cycle and where I am. weird.

    GreenonBlue: I have to say I only became comfortable with the entire thing a few months or a few cycles into it.

    Zenfreckle: oh ya! i forgot about Vanessa's experience in SNIG. that's a great idea!

    Darharja: ohhhh, that sucks. I understand about the not sealing- i had HUGE issues with making it happen. My best strategy was running hot water over it and using the different fold, and forcing it to turn SLOWLY. I hope that the next time you try it works! you can be an honorary member!

    Darkpurplemoon: yes i've heard of the Moon Cup. Unfortunately I think DivaCup has the monopoly here in Canada, and I'm not sure about ordering online.
    I'm glad that you've found us here and I'm very jealous of your awesome success with "no poo" shampoo!

  16. Hi Eco Yogini - I'll give it another go next week, and if you really want me to, I'll fill you in on all the gory details about how I go.

    Or not.


  17. Question.. is the diva cup soft? I have a natural rubber cup that I used to love, but after a bout of vaginitis (we are covering all kinds of taboos with this comment train..) it is really irritating and I've gone back to organic tampons. I like the idea of natural rubber instead of petroleum products up my hooha, but it is a bit stiff and therefore uncomfortable.
    But despite this, a cup combined with Luna Pads make me very, very happy.
    Highly recommended: the book The Red Tent. Caused me to look at menstruation in a completely new light.

  18. Anonymous:
    Yep! sure is soft. Made from silicone... which after a quick wiki i am confused... so i'm checking the Divacup site:

    it's BPA and latex free, made from healthcare grade soft silicone that starts as a liquid, heated (eek) and cured (eek again! all that energy!) and the result is plastic free and no risk of leaching. It holds the current Canada Healthcare medical license for use.

    made from hydrogen, carbon and silicon and have been found to be accepted by the human body (no adverse affects).

    also- phtalate free and acrylic free!
    check out their FAQ for more details :)

    I hope this was helpful :)

    (ps- I also liked the Red Tent) :)

  19. Thank you ladies for the fantastic information. We so appreciate you sharing and being a part of this revolution!

    Cheers to you!

    The DivaCup Team
    Twitter @divacup


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