Monday, March 30, 2009

DivaCup; an Overshare

After taking in  a deep, centered breath and just blurping my DivaCup practices out there I was confronted with the real possibility that people were actually reading my blog... and GASP, now know some private info about my *period* (shhh!). That was a little strange, but then I did want to share this awesome dealy out there that truly has changed how I live and practice yoga!

Then I thought, well really I should probably ALSO share these little insights that I have learned along the way and didn't quite expect when I first purchased the DivaCup.... sigh. Deeeeep breath. 

So I bought the DivaCup and waved it around in the air for The Fiancé (who requested I put this in caps so he's more than a definite article- lol) shouting: "I got a DivaCup!" and doing a little dance. I gotta say, he was quite excited and thought it was a hilarious idea to read the instructions while I just decided to give it a try. He always reads the instructions and I always just throw them aside... I guess I wasn't really supposed to try it when I wasn't on my moontime, but whatever. There was no way I was going to rely on my ability under pressure.

As I stood there in the bathroom, with The Fiancé listing off strategies on how to get this thing working I realized that my life was a little strange. Also, I giggled when he read: "If you are unable to remove the cup, DO NOT PANIC- Lisa it really says that in caps LOL". They actually have an emergency phone service to call in case... well in case it gets lost... haha. I have no idea. I did a little victory dance because I managed to get it working and then: I tried to get it out. For twenty minutes. OMG- they were SO right about the DO NOT PANIC. I panicked a little. I gotta say. I really just needed to figure out this "push" concept. I was fine! I can't believe I'm sharing this. lol.

For all you yogini's new to the DivaCup here a few things I've noticed along my journey of cupness:

- DO NOT PANIC. When it says "push" to get the cup out, they REALLY mean PUSH. With your, you know, beautiful feminine muscles. Which I did not know I had truly until that moment.

- Sometimes the cup will open belatedly.. perhaps while you are walking down the hall, or while you're having a conversation. This feeling is very off-putting and disconcerting. You are not alone.

- You don't actually have to buy the Diva Wash to clean the cup. Just make sure that whatever product you are using to clean it out doesn't have any nasty chemicals or additives. Messing with the delicate chemical balance in your vagina really isn't a good idea.

- Using an old toothbrush to scrub the cup is a great idea!

- The DivaCup really can be boiled in a pot of water. Although, I prefer to do this when no one else is home... just to avoid the awkward- "whatcha cooking??" moments.

- There is some "magical" fold that is supposed to decrease moments of random "popping" or the cup just not fully opening. It didn't work for me. Neither does trying to "turn" the cup around... how am I supposed to do THAT? Know that you are not the only one who jumps up and down and wiggles to get it to open for sure. At least I hope I'm not the only person to do that...

That was a little weird. I hope it was helpful for some of you new DivaCup Yoginis out there!



  1. ha! I got mine in the post last week and I can't wait to try it! I don't think I've ever been excited about that time before! My fella was also very excited for me... and a few intimate friends were totally disgusted by me, so I'm really glad you just put this post up. Makes me feel like less of a weirdo, which my female friends made me feel.
    Intimate post? yes
    Helpful to others? also yes

  2. Really great! Thanks for screwing up your courage and sharing, because you've addressed the one issue I was a little concerned about. I actually bought some disposable cups (yeah, only half way there, I know) last year for an international trip, but I've yet to use them b/c I was a little nervous. I'm now inspired to try one out next time... Thanks again for being so frank!

  3. I have never used the DivaCup, but I thoroughly enjoyed your tales!

    I think it's great that you shared this. It's not something we have to be quiet about! =)

  4. I've used the DivaCup for a little over a year now, I think, and I quite like it! I've found a few tricks over the months, like warming it up under hot water for a while seems to make it unpop a bit better. It also seems to help if you don't completely fold it all the way up to the tapered end. That is, if you leave the closed end rounded, not included in the overall fold. This is basically the special fold method they talk about in the instructions.

    I've also learned that it is very very important to make sure it turns easily in both directions before I consider it inserted, otherwise it leaks.

    Also, for people like me who have very heavy flow on a couple middle days, you need a back-up pad (cloth LunaPads are good!) because when it overflows, it really overflows. (If these days fall on work days, I still use tampons on those days, because I get more 'warning' of an impending emergency.) That being said, the DivaCup has saved me a lot of money and the landfill a lot of discarded feminine items! It's really a handy dandy thing once you get used the whole insertion/removal process.

  5. Hi Ladies! Thanks so much for the support and responses :) For a few minutes I wondered about this post...

    @Theresa: ouuu, I never made that connection- I will definitely try the hot water :) Also, I can't seem to turn it. at all really, even when it's inserted and open... haha hence the jumping up and down lol. I think heating it up will definitely help :)

  6. I use one too, but it took awhile to develop my inserting skills. Like Theresa said, don't fold it all the way to the end, and make sure it rotates before you think it's in all the way. That was my biggest lesson--I was pushing it in too far and it wouldn't open or turn.

  7. This is an awesome and very informative post! Way to go Eco Yogini! I read a lot of blog posts about the DivaCup ( I work at, thanks for the mention Theresa) and I can honestly say that this one really covered the topic well. I like the tips you offered as well.
    Your experience of being unable to "Turn" the cup once it's in is a fairly common one. They tell you to turn the cup so that it seals properly and wont leak. You won't be able to do this unless the cup has already popped open fully. I prefer the "push down fold" for insertion as it seems to open easily. Check it out: Another way to create the seal is by running a finger around the outside rim of the cup once it is in, or you can "Stir" the cup by grabbing a hold of the stem and moving it around in a circular motion.
    In order to remove the cup pushing or "bearing down" helps a lot but it's also important to break the seal before you remove the cup. To do this grab the stem of the cup and using a finger; push one of the sides of the cup in. This should make it a lot easier to remove.
    I just wanted to say thanks for spreading the word to your readers about the DivaCup. I think it's really important that women talk openly about their periods, so good on you for being so brave and open about it.
    If anyone reading would like to try the DivaCup and needs a bit of convincing, here is a coupon for $5 off on, enter the code: 'ecoyogini' at check out.
    Thanks again!

  8. Morgan: wow!! thanks so much!! Super cool about the coupon as well :)
    Ok, I am so glad that it's common about the turn, I'll be trying the "push down" method a bit more at my next cycle, I think I was folding it too much this time around. I also never thought to fold it pre-"push" to help the removal- lol. That will surely be a help.

    I also am super happy with the dialogue happening here. Women shouldn't hide their periods, but then it's telling how nervous I was about typing this post. :)

  9. Thanks for sharing this.. I have thought about using the DivaCup but I am such a coward, I really thought this thing was going to get lost in there.
    Thanks for the advise I might muscle up the courage to try it some day.
    And yes we are reading your blog!
    Take Care

  10. Well, this was the most informative post I've read all day. I have been using a Keeper (same idea but rubber instead of silicone) for about 8 or 9 years, and I still learned a bunch! Hot water to warm it up, turn, noted... So nice that LunaPads showed up and offered a coupon, too. I agree about their utility - I personally use LunaPanties and LunaPads as backup. Great techniques + honesty! ;)

  11. well, i've been a big fan of my diva cup for more than 2 years now. and i don't know what i'd do without it. there isn't anything more comfortable...i can practically forget i'm having my period. as a sometimes-yogini, and a summer-months-runner, diva cup keeps me active.

    i do the fold. but i just fold over the rim a little bit, not the whole way down the cup (that would be impossible). once it's it, i grab just about the stem and turn it to make sure it's in place. it's just always seemed to work for me - but everyone's anatomy is different. and to get it out, i also press my finger into it to create a fold, and it comes out super-easy (although it also makes a funky "squishing-suctiony" noise).

  12. Thanks for sharing! I bought a Keeper two periods ago but haven't been completely successful with it yet on my first heavy flow day. Funny thing is I get excited to try again every month, and I know I'm going to be ecstatic when I finally get it right.

  13. Your most welcome Ecoyogini!
    I just thought I'd pop back in to add that I also am a fan of warming the cup in hot water before insertion. I usually insert my cup while I am in the shower in the morning, that way I'm relaxed and the cup as well as my body is warm so it makes everything much easier.

  14. Hi, thank you for all the informations...I've been thinking about buying the Divacup for months, now I will simply do it :o)

  15. Keeeewwwlll.. thank you for the great article - I have been curious and pondering... but with no one to ask. No friends. Sad story. ;-)

    Truly, thanks for this - it's not over-share. That's why we blog anyway, isn't it?

  16. As you know, I'll be trying this for the first time very soon, and since you had mentioned you used one, I thought I would look at your blog for any posts on DivaCups - and was glad to find this! I have to say, I'm still nervous about it. Anything that says in the directions DO NOT PANIC makes me panic! ;) But anatomically speaking, to put this in perspective, it's not like it can truly get lost up there! So I guess I'll have to remember that and just breathe.

    As for the oversharing...I struggle with that, too. I'm still not even sure I want to put my real name on my blog, as when you are in education, you are warned not to let your personal life or personal viewpoints get out there in the public eye - it may hurt your current job standing, or prevent you from moving forward in your career. Plus, I'm not sure I want students finding my posts on DivaCups! ;)

    HOWEVER....I was just thinking yesterday that it would be so wonderful if we lived in a society in which periods weren't STILL considered taboo, or inappropriate conversation. Lucky for me, in my circle of friends, we are pretty open about it, though one of my friends is disgusted with the idea of reusable feminine products (come on, it's our own bodies!). But I still have some trepidation when it comes to talking about it in less intimate circles. And around men....I wouldn't dare!

    Why should we feel that way? It's part of who we are as female human beings. And where does the silence get us? I NEVER KNEW about reusable pads or the Diva Cup until I read Gorgeously Green in August 2008. And then I started seeeing my favorite bloggers mention the Diva Cup, and suddenly, I was ready to try for myself. But do you know how many people DON'T KNOW about it? It's unbelievable.

    Frankly, I'm starting to get a little annoyed by it. If I have to sit through countless commercials about erectile dysfunction while watching TV, then why can't we discuss our periods shamelessly out in the public eye?! (And WITHOUT cutesy actresses dressed up as Mother Nature, or adorable little graphics that have nothing to do with periods, except for the kind that belong in sentences!)

    So...bravo, EcoYogini! Bravo!

  17. First of all, out of all your posts L, I'm THRILLED to see how much conversation this one has sparked!
    Yay Periods! My wonderful friend (guess who?!) told me about the DivaCup, and at first I'll admit, I was a little skeptical. Every period after that I couldn't help but think more and more about all the garbage, read CHEMICALS used in tampons. I'm putting all that nasty stuff WHERE?!
    So I took the plunge. I wasn't quite as nervous about it as others, but none the less, it was a big step.
    AWESOME!!! I was looking forward to my period! When has that ever happened before?!
    It's only been a few months, but I love it! I was just thinking this morning about how great it is that I never have to worry about carrying tampons and pads with me again...
    I insert it in morning shower, and I'm golden! (Consequently, I've never had problems inserting, so I'm guessing the hot water of the shower has something to do with that!)
    I tell EVERYONE! Overshare?...Whatever! Women need to know this information :)
    Thanks L!

  18. ...still on topic...i was finding the popping open was not happening... grrr. decided to do the whole thing in the shower - hot water, relaxing.... then decided maybe a bit of yoga would help. uttanasana followed by trikonasana both sides & hey presto - instant popping! this is great- wish i'd discovered it years ago!

  19. Thanks for this awesome post! I've been thinking about getting a DivaCup for awhile but wanted some reviews first. Now I know the full scoop!

  20. great post, thanks for sharing.. made me chuckle :)
    i've been thinking (a wee bit nervously.. with fearful thoughts of loosing it and such lol)of trying a DivaCup! after reading this am most definately going to get one and give it a go! glad you posted this :)
    thanks for visiting my blog, hope you give the lavender~milk cleanser a try and would love to hear what you think of it. Interesting place you have here i'll pop back for a good read when i have more time. Many Blessings x

  21. Great post! I've been having some trouble figuring mine out.... I love that you put this out there!! Mine always seems to leak.. but I'm wondering if I need the other size. Apparently your body "changes size" when you get in your upper 20's??? I'll keep at it. haha... xoxo

  22. hmmm. leaking could be a bunch of different things... like maybe it's over flowing? or maybe it wasn't sealed (that was my problem, it was still closed in there and leaking was NOT ideal lol).

    the turny thingy with hot water was definitely successful for me :)

    You're right though, there's another size, for women who have had children or are above 30. the website recommends switching once you hit your thirties regardless if you've had children or not. i'm not sure if that's a marketing ploy just to get you to buy another one or not.....

    so i'm waiting to see what happens :)

  23. Great post. Thanks for over-sharing. I have used the DivaCup for over 3 years and use the bigger(?) size designed for women over 40 that have had kids. What I have noticed re:leaking is that if I use a tampon (sorry, but it is just one)at the very start of my menstruation it will absorb pretty much all the blood along the vaginal wall. Following this I can then use the Divacup for the balance of my menstrual flow with no problem. What I think happens is that the outside plastic of the cup has an almost capillary effect so that any fluid on the outside of the cup attracts more fluid to it. (My science might be off but this method has pretty much solved any problem that I have had with leaking). Tampons are designed to absorb fluid higher up in the vaginal cavity whereas the Divacup sits very low in the vagina.

  24. I read this post when I first discovered your blog a few months ago and I haven't been able to stop thinking about the DivaCup since. I finally got one and had my first chance to use it today. I LOVE it already so I had to come back to say thanks! How could I have gone so long without this? I'm so glad you blogged about this and your tip were so helpful, I'm sure my first time wouldn't have gone so smoothly without THANKS, now I'm off to tell every woman I see about the Divacup :)

  25. i know this is a super delayed comment, but as a dental hygienist i would NOT recommend using an OLD toothbrush- invest in a new one for your cup only! you don't even want to know all the nasty bacteria living on an old used brush. you defo do not want to put that inside you. Your vagina is cleaner than your mouth!

  26. Funny post,makes much sense. Use a new, diva cup only toothbrush!! Well I recently heard of "diva cups" and I just completed menopause! Darn, I wish I had heard of diva cups and reuseable pads. Not fair

  27. I'm a convert! Great for running and yoga. Just takes a little practice and patience on perfecting use :)

  28. I am so glad I found this blog. I've been using Diva Cup for about four months and have never ever been able to turn it. It was good to read I'm not the only one and I am normal. ALso good to read that I am not the only one who has trouble "being relaxed" while putting in the cup. Thanks and thank you to all who gave advice through your comments.

  29. I bet you never thought that this little post would continue to inspire YEARS after being published. I read this post last year and it inspired me to buy a diva cup but then I was too scared too try it until a few months ago. The tips were all so helpful or at least just plain encouraging and I have now used it the past two months! No problem. I found it quite helpful to try it the first time in the shower. Very low pressure situation especially since I live in a mostly communal bathroom community. Thank you again!


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