So… MENSTRUAL CUPS.
(sorry boys, that’s the hint for you to read another post if you are squeamish, but just so you know women are always pleasantly surprised when men know more than just ‘PMS’ when it comes to feminine matters, so read on for research purposes!)
Back to the ladies – you’ll know that when it comes to that womanly time of the month, I am a pretty strong proponent of using a menstrual cup over pads and even tampons. It’s environmentally friendly, space saving and comfortable once you get the hang of it, all important things you need as an active female traveller who wants to spend her travel time worrying about what to see than whether she’s sprung a leak.
I started off with the Lunette, and I currently use the Victoria’s Love with its convenient discharge valve, so at first glance the only thing that intrigued me about the Lily Cup Compact was its slightly odd shape:
And then it did THIS:
Like, how cool is that? The creator apparently took inspiration from Japanese collapsible cups and wanted something equally elegant. I love how you can collapse it down into something so flat, which makes it so much easier to slip into your bag – the problem with your standard menstrual cup is while they aren’t particularly bulky, their bulb like shape does take up precious space when you’re trying to minimize carrying around a load.
The Lily cup in compact form is easy to palm discreetly and relatively flat, so it’s easy to stash in tiny bags. Whether you’re travelling and trying not to carry too much or just have a tiny evening clutch, the compactness definitely goes a long way.
The folks at Intimina kindly sent one over for me to try – I used it for about 2 months to get a better feel for it, and am quite happy with it so far. I’m using the small size A (there’s a larger size B), so it does have to be removed and emptied more often especially in the start of my period when my flow is heavier, but on lighter flow days, I can wear it comfortably all day without feeling a thing. I like the Victoria’s Love cup for the convenience of the discharge valve, but the VL stem is quite a lot longer (by virtue of the fact that it also functions as a discharge valve, it would be a pain to use if the stem was too short!) so you are definitely more aware that you’re wearing it as compared to the Lily Cup.
When it comes to the material, the Lily Cup compact uses a medical grade silicone which is really soft compared to the Lunette which is harder while the Victoria’s Love feels more rubbery. I had concerns that the collapsible nature of the Lily Cup Compact would make insertion hard, but in fact I think it actually helps instead – I used to have problems getting the cup to ‘pop’ back open (you need to fold it when you insert, and then wiggle it around a bit for the folded cup lips to pop back open and create the seal inside of you) but something about the shape of the collapsible system makes it pop back open more easily.
The only thing that I don’t like so far is that there seems to be a bit of staining inside the cup that can’t be washed away completely, but that’s a pretty minor thing all around (because honestly, who’s looking at the inside of your cup). Also, I wish it wasn’t so pink – I know it’s a girly thing but it would be cool if there were other colour options for people who don’t like pink aka ME.
Right now I use the Victoria’s Love for heavy days and switch to the Lily Cup Compact for medium to light days. I’ve also taken to carrying the Lily Cup in my bag because it’s so compact so I can whip it out in case of unexpected periods.
The Lily Cup Compact has done quite well for itself, getting successfully funded on Kickstarter. It’s also currently being sold for US$39.90 on its website, which might seem expensive, but think about how much time and space you’ll save from buying pads in the long run – the recommended lifespan is up to 5 years!
Check out the Lily Cup Compact on the Intimina website here. I’m happy to answer any questions if you are curious about menstrual cups in general, just drop a comment here so we can care and share 🙂
See my other menstrual cup reviews:
- My first menstrual cup – the Lunette and how I became a menstrual cup convert
- Victoria’s Love – the menstrual cup with a discharge valve