I know that this post may turn some people off but I am really excited. A couple years ago Hubby encouraged me to try a different Feminine product. He was working for an Internet porn site at the time, (something he's not proud of...but it paid the bills right after the .Com bust) and The Instead was a product ad on the site. At first I was a little skeptical and nervous to move away from tampons. Not to mention I found the idea of having to insert the Instead kinda icky. But the Instead looks a little like a female condom. It is designed to sit above the cervix and hold the period flow. It was fairly simple to figure out how to use, once one got the hang of it.
Well, years later....something like seven years later, I am happy to report that I love the Instead. Not only was it not as icky as I thought, but it actually made me feel cleaner than tampons. It is also cheaper than tampons, as I only had to change them half as much....and they were super comfortable. I could not feel them at all. One problem was their availability. I was able to find them at Target...but only once in a while. When they were in stock, I bought, everything that they had.
After I moved to Colorado, I had a harder time finding them, but then I got pregnant with Cookie and I was not worried....for a long while about feminine products. Imagine my surprise, while cruising the web, looking at cloth diapers for Cookie and looking to buy the Instead online, since Aunt Flo had reappeared after a long absence, and I could not find them at Target, that I discovered Feminine cups. (Wow sorry for that run-on sentence) The idea intrigued me. And I was having a harder time using the Instead after giving birth to Cookie. Things down below had changed.
So, on a whim I ordered my first cup, The Diva Cup, along with some diaper products. I really did not know anything about cups other than what I read from the company's website. But the idea of never having to buy feminine hygiene products again was the big seller for me. Not to mention that there is no threat of Toxic shock with them. The Diva cup was an instant hit with me. It is made of silicone and completely safe to use in your body. It was not so different than the Instead in insertion and it lasted even longer without having to be "emptied." The cup inserts inside the vagina and the itty bitty suction holes on it keep it in place and from leaking. After the initial shelling out of $60.00 or so, I knew I would never have to buy those pesky one time use items again. Plus, the cup was actually easier to use and it was even cleaner than the Instead.
A while back I discovered some great forums and one woman's blog about cups: http://menstrualcupinfo.wordpress.com/ After reading about the myriad of different cups out there, I am ordering my second cup. A different brand called Lunette. For about $45.00, I will get a new cup and hopefully and even more comfortable period. For those of you scared to try cups, let me just say, don't be. I think they are ingenious. Us ladies just need to get past a little squeamishness and the stigma of not supposed to be touching oneself "down there". For me, going green and saving money are just two more positive things about cups.