What are the differences between menstrual cups and tampons?

This is a topic that comes up quite often in conversations surrounding menstrual cups. Ultimately, what it comes down to is personal preference and what works the best for you and your lifestyle. In today’s post we will explain some of the key differences between cups and tampons!

Disposable vs reusable

One of the main differences between tampons and menstrual cups is that tampons are disposable, whereas menstrual cups are reusable. Although there are disposable menstrual cups on the market, most of the cups available are reusable. Medical-grade silicone cups can be used for up to 10 years, (yay for sustainability!) whereas conventional tampons need to be thrown away. However, organic and biodegradable tampons like the ones we offer are much better for the environment compared to conventional tampons which take over 500 years to breakdown.

Tampons absorb, whereas menstrual cups collect

Tampons absorb the menstrual fluid and menstrual cups collect menstrual fluid. Tampons are made of cotton and other materials like rayon and polyester. The tampon absorbs not only menstrual fluid but also the natural lubricating fluids created by the vagina. The medical-grade silicone that our ultra-soft menstrual cups are made of is not an absorbent material, instead the cup collects the blood flowing out of the vagina. Tampons also hold about half the amount of blood that menstrual cups do.

They’re placed in different positions

Reusable menstrual cups sit lower in the vaginal canal, whereas disposable cups sit just below the cervix. Tampons however, are placed a little bit higher than reusable menstrual cups.

They have different usage times

Tampons can only be left in for 8 hours otherwise you are at risk of  Toxic Shock Syndrome. Menstrual cups can be used for up to 12 hours, however this is dependent on how light or heavy your flow is. If you keep your menstrual cup in without emptying it for more than 12 hours you also run the risk of developing TSS.

Vastly different environmental impact

Conventional tampons have a significantly more detrimental impact on the environment compared to organic and biodegradable tampons. Because of the material they’re made of, reusable menstrual cups can last up to a decade which means you’re spending less and wasting less.