Menstrual products are a world apart from what was available even only twenty years ago. But it can be difficult to determine which product is right for you—a decision that may be influenced by lifestyle, physical activity, comfort, fit, cost, and many other factors.
That’s why we’re publishing a series of menstrual product reviews, written by the staff here at Clue (and a few of our loved ones) to show you how we used these products, and how they worked for us. Check out the reviews here.
Full disclosure—many of these products were sent to us free of charge, for the purpose of reviews. These are the unbiased opinions of the folks who used the products.
“The Ruby cup was easy to insert, and I really didn’t feel it at all once it was inside.”
My flow is: medium-to-heavy
I’m looking for: Something that will replace my disposable pads
Ruby Cup’s website welcomes you by explaining their humanitarian program: For each cup they sell, they’ll donate one to a girl or woman without access to menstrual care products in places like East Africa, or in Nepal. Ruby Cup also gives workshops to young girls, explaining how to use the cup, and educating them about menstrual health. Their website also contains instructions on how to use the cup, as well as general information about periods and menstrual health.
The Ruby cup comes in two sizes: the small cup, and the medium cup. They also offer a Sisterpack (two cups a with a discount) a cup carrier, a kegel trainer, a stone pillow, and accessories like tote bags, toothbrushes, coffee-to-go-cups, and notebooks.
I tried the medium pink cup: it came with instructions and with an organic cotton bag. The instructions are printed on a small booklet in different languages. The Ruby cup was easy to insert, and I really didn’t feel it at all once it was inside. Removing it was easy. The stem has a good grip and folding the cup wasn’t a problem.
I emptied it every four or five hours on the first and second days of my period. It leaked a bit, but not much. For me it is important not to feel uncomfortable when inserting and removing the cup. So the fact that the cup has a soft base for removal was a big bonus for me.
I’ll continue using my Ruby Cup, because it performed well.
—Ilaria, Support Agent
“I can highly recommend. It's a game-changer!”
My flow is: Medium
I’m looking for: reliability, convenience, comfort and an environmentally-friendly option
I chose to give the menstrual cup a go as I kept hearing how awesome it was. They were right!
It took several attempts to insert the Ruby Cup, but it was worth persevering! Although that might feel like the last thing you want to do whilst cramping and bleeding, once inserted, you almost can’t feel the cup. You should still be able to pull on the stem to ensure it’s in place. Removal might require some kegelling if the cup has moved out of reach, so try to release suction before removing it by pinching the base.
Compared to other collection methods, using the Ruby Cup gave me a much better idea of the volume of my flow. Plus, I was able to forget about blood management for much longer. Because it’s so environmentally friendly, you pretty much stop needing pads or tampons if you use the cup with a period underwear. I always wear it with a period underwear as the cup can overflow if you don’t empty it in time.
After each period, they advise you to boil the cup but whilst you are reusing it, it’s ok to just rinse and reinsert it. If you don’t have access to a sink, you can just wipe it with toilet paper. Ruby Cup also offers special travel wipes for the times when you are somewhere with limited facilities.
I can highly recommend. It's a game-changer!
“The cup itself felt very comfortable and I did not feel restricted at all.”
My flow is: up to five or six days in length, with one day of spotting, one light day, two heavy days, and one day light I’m looking for: a safe product that’s easy to use while on the run, at the gym, and at night.
The RubyCup was my first experience with a menstrual cup. I usually have a heavy period for about two to three days, so I tried the medium size. The cup comes in a nice draw-string pouch with instructions. It’s a long cup made of silicone, with a solid stem, which is very helpful for removal.
I was surprised at how easy it was to fit inside my vagina. Because I was a first timer, I used a liner to be safe. The cup itself felt very comfortable and I did not feel restricted at all. You definitely want to sit on the toilet when emptying the cup, and ideally have a sink right next to you (which I luckily have at home). Removing the cup was very easy, although pulling and breaking the suction felt a bit weird. I dumped the blood right into the toilet, washed the cup off and inserted it back in. Unfortunately the second time I experienced some leaking, which could have been caused from me feeling too comfortable with inserting it quickly and not paying attention to make sure that it was placed right. I will try it again during my next period, but using a menstrual cup definitely has a learning curve.
—Sarah, Executive Assistant
“I experienced no leaking, awkward sensations, or challenges with using the cup.”
My flow is: regular I’m looking for: something that I don’t have to change often, and that’s also good for my yoga practice
Ruby Cup is made of 100% medical grade silicone, which makes it easy to insert and remove. The packaging is very simple (which I like) and the Cup I tried is transparent (which I also like).
Medium is the perfect size for me (I have the impression it is slightly bigger than other brands). I experienced no leaking, awkward sensations, or challenges with using the cup.
Their website and blog offer offer scientific content and articles about their projects around the world, which I found very interesting. I like to use products that have an eco-social commitment, and that don’t test on animals. I’d definitely recommend Ruby Cup.
—Sil, Support Agent
“...it was a bit smaller than other cups I’ve tried, and I thought that it would leak. But this wasn’t the case, the smaller size turned out to be fine.”
My flow is: short and light, lasting 3-5 days I’m looking for: something sustainable and comfortable
I’ve tried the DivaCup before and reused the same one for a couple of years. I really liked it, but I lost it somewhere. Anyway, I was excited to try a new cup.
The previous cup I had was translucent; I liked being able to see the amount of blood my body produced in a day (about a shot glass or 1 oz.) But this particular cup was red and I didn’t really like this.
As for the fit, it was a bit smaller than other cups I’ve tried, and I thought that it would leak. But this wasn’t the case, the smaller size turned out to be fine. Design wise, I also did not like the little “tail” at the bottom, which to me looked excessively long. I thought I might feel that part sticking out, but I didn’t. I have a theory that if the cup isn’t inserted improperly, then I will be able to feel that part sticking out. But as a veteran menstrual cup user, I don’t foresee that as a problem in the future.
Speaking of the future, Ruby Cup’s instruction manual states that, if cared for properly, it can be used for up to 12 years! If that isn’t sustainability, I don’t know what is.