Avoiding the Tampon Tax with the Mooncup

TMI WARNING: Before I start I must comment that there is almost certainly too much information in this post, it’s about periods and blood and all sorts so if you are the squeamish type look away now.

I saw a blog post about this Eco friendly device for periods that meant no more tampax or sanitary towels.

Sanitary products have recently been in the media after the government decided they were indeed a luxury item and therefore to keep the luxury tax on them, I really can’t understand this, I have found the product expensive especially as throughout varies stages of my life I have had constant periods for a year or more. There really is nothing that luxurious about them. Although you could argue that they are not eco friendly and both Tampax and sanitary towels are certainly clogging up our landfill sites in a similar way nappies do. I’ve certainly done my bit to clog up landfill with two kids in nappies and myself with the Tampax and Sanitary towels. I felt above everything trying out this Mooncup could be my chance to do my bit and help the environment.

I have always had very heavy periods 10 days on, at a time and at least 3 or 4 days where wearing the super type of sanitary product and tampax combined would often not suffice.

So I saw this blog post, a Mooncup, a device that you inserted into your vagina and it collects the period, you buy one and it lasts for years. I instantly wanted to find out more.

The Mooncup claims to be ideal for heavy periods as it can collect up to three times what a normal sanitary product can. It all sounded too good to be true, good for the environment and good for heavy periods is two very big ticks in my box.

I visited the Mooncup website and see a very funny YouTube video promoting the brand and a wealth of questions and answers to frequently asked questions.

My main question was, how on earth do you get it up there and in place? It is explained that it takes a bit of getting used to but eventually you’ll get there and after about three cycles it’ll be like riding a bike.

It answered all questions I had and my next became where do I get one. So it turns out boots sell them and they cost £19.99 considering I spend around £5 per period on sanitary products so in 4 cycles I’ve broken even and then no more tampax again.

Don’t get me wrong when I first discovered Tampax I thought they were the best thing since sliced bread, as a heavy menstrator life without tampax was unbearable. but I find tampax uncomfortable the thought of this new device was something I really wanted to try and really wanted to work.

So I actually sent my husband to buy me one, as he works in a town center so it was easier for him to go in than me. There is a sizing guide depending on age and weather you have had children I think age and motherhood placed me in the A category. So this was what I instructed my husband to buy. I’m not even sure he was aware what he was buying I just sent him a picture of the product. I have a great husband.

And now all I had to do was wait. It wasn’t long and my time came to try it. Now my first time was a bit of a disaster. Getting it in is no where near as easy as it looks on the picture and it does take a while to get use to getting it in and in the right place.

I started using it on one of my heaviest days, this was definitely a mistake and actually they recommend you start using it towards the end of your first period. I wish in retrospect I had heeded this advice.

It started off being really uncomfortable, once I had figured out this was because the stem was to long I began to cut bits off until I realized I might as well just cut it all off. Once it was gone I was immediately feeling more comfortable and on the odd occasion I got it in the right place I could tell it was working.

Now there is a question on their website Is the Mooncup messy. Yes, yes it is. there is no doubt about it it’s more messy than any other type of product, the little cup fills up with your flow and you have to dispose of it down the toilet. you get to see pretty much everything. Which is a bit yuck but also quite an experience, there is a little measuring line on the side and I must admit I felt a bit smug when I measured a full 60ml on my first period confirming what I knew that I had a heavy flow.

Then you have to clean it which again is a bit messy but hey it’s all-natural and my hands get a thorough doctor type wash because they need it after doing the whole procedure.

On the plus side, the mooncup does hold more than other products so you will find you have to change it less. and perhaps if you had a light flow, it would not be quite so messy as I find on lighter days it’s a lot more manageable and less messy.

They actually claim it is not messy on the website and perhaps as I am still a mooncup novice things will become better as I get positioning right and get better at using it.

My first period I actually gave up half way through, as I wasn’t getting it in the right place and it was becoming more and more uncomfortable and I was also out a lot and dealing with this in public was not easy especially as it was my first time. So I decided to give up and try again next time. I wasn’t going to be put off by my bad experience as I still had great faith in the product.

One of my other big concerns was the cleaning aspect, but it turns out this part is relatively easy I tend to do what they recommend which is clean with water and a brush if needed during my period and in between I boil it.

Second time came around all too soon and I was ready for take two, I was definitely having problems inserting either too high or too low and I was reading and re reading. I found it difficult to keep it from popping open too soon but realized actually I was putting it too low most of the time and when I really went for it and tried to get it as high as possible it was working out, it was at this point I realized I may have been a bit over zealous with my trimming of the stem.

On a couple of occasions I got it just right, you can tell when it’s just right because you can’t feel it, and you don’t get any leakage.

I’m now into my fourth cycle and things are going well I’m still in the beginner category although perhaps I’m moving up to intermediate as the more I do it the more times I get it right and It was definitely worth perusing. And I glad I stuck at it.

Not only is the mooncup great for the environment, it also makes my heavy period more bearable and actually seems to make the whole period experience a bit nicer, It feels more natural.

I’m definitely in favor of the Mooncup overtaking the world and if you are looking for a way to avoid the Tampon Tax get down to a shop and buy yourself one now.

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