FAQ - Frequently asked questions about menstrual cups
FAQ - Frequently asked questions about Practicups menstrual cups and other menstrual questions.
Frequently Asked Questions
How do I choose my size?
Unlike most brands, with Practicups you are sure you'll receive the right size. We give you both sizes of cups at the same time. The measurements are as follows:
Content (up to the holes): 25 ml
Cup height: 55 mm
Length of the stem: 10 mm
Diameter: 42 mm
Content (up to the holes): 30 ml
Cup height: 57 mm
Length of the stem: 10 mm
Diameter: 45 mm
Which cup you use mainly depends on the intensity of your period and your build. The advantage is that we will send you both sizes, so that you can test at your leisure which cup you like best.
FAQ - Frequently asked questions about Practicups menstrual cups and other menstrual questions.
How do I sterilize my Practicups?
You do this by boiling the cup for 3 minutes in a pan of water. Make sure that the cup does not touch the bottom, for example by hanging it in a whisk.
You can also use special sterilization tablets or a sterilizing liquid if you prefer this (these are also used for sterilizing baby products, for example).
How do I proceed the first time?
The best place to try your Practicups is in a place that is comfortable for you. We therefore recommend doing this at home. Some women prefer to try the cup on when they are not on their period. Unlike tampons, menstrual cups don't absorb anything, so they won't get stuck or dehydrate you.
For some women it takes up to 3 menstrual periods before they get the hang of using the menstrual cup. Therefore, it may be a good idea to carry a backup sanitary napkin just in case.
Once you understand how to insert the cup correctly and how often to change it (this depends on the strength of your period), you will feel more confident using just your Practicups.
How do I submit my Practical Cups?
1. Wash your hands
Always wash your hands with soap for 30 seconds before inserting the menstrual cup.
Fold the cup into a C-shape and hold this shape to insert the cup. Most women find this fold the most comfortable, but you can try other options as well. After all, every body is unique. Check out here which folding techniques you can use.
Hold the cup firmly in the chosen shape. With your other hand, hold your labia apart. Insert the cup into your vagina until it is fully and comfortably inserted. The cup will hang at a different height depending on the person and the course of your period. Release the cup so that it pops open and creates a vacuum. This keeps the cup in place and prevents leaks.
Check the bottom of the cup with your fingers to make sure it's fully open. If it is still folded, hold the cup by the base and twist it slightly until you notice it opening and sucking. Use the cup for a maximum of 12 hours, depending on the intensity of your period and the size of the cup.
Important: Remember to sterilize the cup before first use. Do this by boiling it for 3 minutes in a pan of water. Repeat this after every menstrual period.
Help, my menstrual cup is leaking! What now?
In principle, a menstrual cup should not leak. It is possible that the cup is full, it is not properly vacuum-tight or it has not been inserted correctly. Here you read tips and tricks to keep your menstrual cup from leaking.
How do I delete my Practicups?
Wash your hands. Grasp the bottom of the cup and squeeze it gently to break the vacuum. Remove the cup by wiggling it up and down slightly without releasing the squeeze. In principle, you do not need the stem for this. Keep the cup straight so you don't spill. When you have completely removed the cup, empty it into the toilet.
How do I know if my cup fits correctly?
You place your Practicups menstrual cups in the vagina under the cervix. It is important that there is enough space between the top of the cup and the cervix, so that the blood can be collected properly. Therefore, make sure that the cup is not too high, but place it as low as is comfortable for you.
I feel the stem, what now?
In that case you can cut off the stem. Just make sure you are comfortable enough to insert and remove the cup without using the stem. Practice with this a few times before cutting the stem.
Can I exercise while wearing my Practicups menstrual cup?
Yes, you can definitely exercise while wearing your Practicups!
In fact, you will feel more comfortable with a menstrual cup than with pads and tampons. Firstly, a cup does not chafe or shift, as is the case with sanitary towels. In addition, you will be able to exercise more relaxed, because you have to change less often and there is less chance of leakage.
Do Practicups also work upside down or, for example, when doing yoga?
Yes, if you insert your Practicups properly, it will stay in place without leaking.
Can I swim while wearing my Practicups menstrual cup?
Yes, you can swim with your cup without any problems, as it is safely positioned inside your vagina. As soon as the cup opens in your vagina and creates a vacuum, you will not leak and can therefore swim without any problems. You also do not suffer from a hanging rope.
Can I wear my Practicups at night?
Naturally! Practicups menstrual cups can collect up to 3-5 times more blood than a tampon, so you don't have to worry about this. You can wear a cup for 12 hours without any problems.
Can I have sex if I wear a menstrual cup?
Yes, of course. You can have sex without any problems while wearing the cup. We do not recommend having penetration as it is very uncomfortable.
The advantage over tampons is that the menstrual cup has no hanging string.
Do the Practicups menstrual cups collect more blood than a tampon?
Yes. A normal tampon absorbs 8-10 ml of blood. Our smallest cup collects 25 ml of blood. In addition, menstrual cups do not dry you out and prevent irritation.
Can I use a menstrual cup if I wear an IUD?
Many women with an IUD use a menstrual cup without any problems. Unfortunately, the use of a menstrual cup in combination with an IUD sometimes goes wrong. This could be because the IUD's strings get caught between the rim of the cup and your fingers. This will pull the IUD down. The IUD can also come loose if the vacuum of the cup is not broken properly when the cup is removed. Always break the vacuum before removing the cup.
We therefore recommend that you always consult your doctor or gynaecologist before using a menstrual cup.
How often should I empty my Practicups?
If you have just started using menstrual cups, we recommend emptying the cup after 4 hours so that you have an idea of how full the cup is getting. In addition, we recommend using the cup at home first, until you have mastered changing and you know approximately how much blood you lose.
It usually takes a number of periods before you get the hang of using the menstrual cup. Most women feel 100% comfortable with the cup after a few months. This is nothing when you consider that you menstruate about 500 times in your life!
Once you have a better understanding of how much blood you lose during your period, you will also have a better idea of how often you should empty your cup. Women with normal to light periods only need to empty their cups every 12 hours. That means you don't have to worry about changing your cup during your working day. It very much depends on your body.
If you suffer from heavy bleeding during your period, for example due to fibroids or other causes, you will probably need to empty the cup more often.
Can I use lubricant when inserting?
Yes, that's possible. Make sure you use water-based lubricant. Oil-based lubricant can damage the cup material. You can also use a little water. During your period, your blood also acts as a lubricant, so you probably won't need a lubricant.
How do I use my Practicups in a public toilet?
First wash your hands, just like when changing a tampon. Remove the cup.
There are several ways to clean your Practicups if there is no washbasin in the toilet cubicle.
Wipe the cup clean with toilet paper or a damp cloth (without alcohol, oils or perfume). Clean the cup with water as soon as you get home.
You can also use a bottle of water to rinse your cup. Always use clean drinking water.
If you're afraid of making a mess when removing the menstrual cup, don't wait until the cup is full to the brim.
Can I use my Practicups while traveling?
Naturally! That is probably one of the biggest advantages of the menstrual cup. You don't have to carry a supply of pads, tampons or other menstrual products, which are also running out and/or difficult to obtain in some places.
In short: a menstrual cup saves you a lot of space in your suitcase and ensures that you are prepared for your entire journey.
We recommend that you get used to using Practicups before your trip. It is also advisable to carry clean drinking water with you during your trip to clean your cup.
Are menstrual cups messy or dirty to use?
Inserting a menstrual cup is similar to inserting a tampon. Removing the cup is easy without getting dirty. The cup will catch all the blood, so make sure you hold the cup straight before emptying it into the toilet or sink. Do not wait to empty until the cup is completely full to avoid spillage.
The advantage is that you don't have to worry about where to put your used tampons or pads if there isn't a trash can nearby. You can easily change the cup in the toilet cubicle, even if there is no sink or trash can.
Observing your own menstrual blood is also a good habit, because it gives you a good picture of your (menstrual) health.
How do I clean my menstrual cup?
If you take good care of your cup, it will last for years. Some tips:
Sterilize the cup before first use and after each period.
Wash your menstrual cup well with water at least once a day. It can't hurt if you're out all day and you don't have access to a sink until you get home.
Use cold water to rinse the cup well before using hot water. This prevents discoloration of the cup.
Use unscented, oil-free soap if you prefer. However, this is not necessary per se. Water is sufficient and also more durable and better for the pH value of your vagina.
How do I clean the holes in my cup?
Fill your menstrual cup with warm water and cover the top with your hand. Squeeze the cup and make sure the water runs out through the holes.
Are the holes clogged? Then brush them with a soft (tooth) brush or pierce them with a skewer or sterilized needle.
How do I remove stains from my cup?
After a while, your cup may discolour. This is quite normal, because blood is a strong dye. Some tips:
Gently scrub the cup with a small, soft-bristled brush and a mixture of water and baking soda.
Place your cup in the sun for a few hours (make sure the cup doesn't melt due to the heat).
Soak your cup overnight in hydrogen peroxide (2% or 3%). Another option is a mixture of 1/2 part water and 1/2 part vinegar. However, this may affect the material of the cup. So watch out for this. After this, clean your cup thoroughly and boil it out before using it again.
My menstrual cup smells strong, what now?
Some women smell stronger than others. It could be that the smell of your menstrual blood remains on the cup. This isn't weird, but it might be annoying.
Other reasons your cup may smell strong include:
You let the cup sit longer than the recommended time.
You have not cleaned the cup properly.
You have washed the cup with products that have damaged the material.
You stored the cup while it was not yet dry, or in a place that does not ventilate well.
You have a vaginal infection.
Read some tips here. If this has no effect, then the smell is probably impossible to remove.
Can I boil my menstrual cup in the microwave?
We do not recommend boiling your cup in the microwave, as this may affect the material of the cup.
Can I wash my menstrual cup in the dishwasher?
No, we do not recommend washing your cup in the dishwasher, because dishwasher tablets and other cleaning agents can damage the cup and affect your inner flora.
How do I store my Practical Cups?
Practical cups come with a handy cotton storage bag. Store your cup in this after boiling, when your cup has completely dried. You can then use the cup immediately during your next period.
Do not store your cup in a non-breathable plastic bag or container.
Can I use Practicups if I have a IUD?
Menstrual cups can be safely used in combination with an IUD. Just make sure you always break the vacuum first, before removing the menstrual cup.
We recommend discussing the use of a menstrual cup with an IUD with your doctor/gynaecologist for appropriate advice.
Can I use Practicups after giving birth?
It is not recommended to use internal menstrual products within 6 weeks after giving birth. This is because the risk of infections is greater. We recommend using external protection (such as washable sanitary towels) for any bleeding.
After the 6 weeks, or an approval from your obstetrician, gynecologist or general practitioner, you can use internal menstrual products and therefore also the menstrual cups.
Can I use Practicups if I have a prolapse of the uterus?
We do not recommend the use of menstrual cups if there is a prolapse of the uterus. Consult your doctor for advice on the best menstrual product for your situation.
Can I use Practicups with a tilted uterus?
If you have a tilted uterus, it is often not a problem to use a menstrual cup. Most women can position the cup correctly with a little practice. If you have any doubts, we recommend that you consult your doctor
Can I use Practicups if I have endometriosis?
If you have a gynecological condition such as endometriosis, we recommend that you consult your doctor before choosing a menstrual product.
That said, many women notice an improvement in their periods when they use menstrual cups. Practicups menstrual cups collect your blood instead of absorbing it, and are therefore much kinder to your body.
Can my Practicups damage my hymen?
The hymen is a rim of tissue that sits like a collar around the entrance to the vagina. Menstrual cups (and tampons) can stretch or tear the hymen.
If you have strong personal or cultural feelings about your hymen, we do not recommend using tampons or menstrual cups.
Do Practicups Make Periods Less Painful?
Many women notice an improvement in menstrual pain with the use of a menstrual cup.
Menstrual cups don't disrupt your inner pH, so it's a much more natural way to manage your period. Menstrual cups are also hypoallergenic, so they do not cause allergic reactions or irritations.
Does Practicups also work in case of heavy periods?
Yes, of course. Our largest size (size 2) can collect up to 30ml of blood up to the holes (3-5 times more than a tampon). It can hold 37.5 ml all the way to the brim, but then you will have a bit of a mess when removing the cup.
Can I use Practicups if I have a vaginal yeast infection?
If you have a vaginal yeast infection, it's best to wait until the infection is gone before using your menstrual cup. After this you can use the cup without any problems.
Can you get a vaginal yeast infection from menstrual cups?
There is no evidence that menstrual cups increase the risk of yeast infections. About 75% of all women will get a yeast infection at least once in their lives.
Can I use Practicups if I have a latex allergy?
Yes, you can use the Practicups menstrual cups if you are allergic to latex, because our cups are latex-free.
Practice cups are made of 100% super soft, flexible and comfortable medical grade silicone. Medical grade silicone is biocompatible with your body. The material is therefore also used for medical applications, including implants.
Help, I can't get my cup out! What now?
A menstrual cup can't get lost or stuck, so don't worry.
If you are unable to remove the cup right away, follow these tips:
Relax! When you're tense, your pelvic floor muscles also tighten, making it harder to remove the cup.
Are you unable to relax? Then do something that causes distraction, such as surfing the internet or watching television.
Gently press on your lower abdomen, just above your pubic bone. Many gynecologists do this during examinations. This prevents tightening of the pelvic floor muscles.
It can help to take a warm shower to relax.
Try to remove the cup in a squatting position. It often helps if you push a little.
Wait at least an hour after you wake up before trying to remove your menstrual cup. Gravity often helps to lower the cup slightly.
Break the vacuum of the cup by pressing the base of the cup. Keep the cup pressed and try to pull it down while wiggling.
If the above tips don't work, please contact us. If we are not available, please visit your GP, out-of-hours GP or emergency department.