Help! My Menstrual Cup is Leaking: 3 Tips for New Cup Users

uhohSo you got your new menstrual cup, waited patiently for your period to start, figured out how to insert it (thanks, YouTube videos!) and now… it’s leaking! Before you give up, remember the first time you used a tampon. Did you get it right on the very first try? Probably not. Trying something new–especially something so personal!–can be scary, especially as an adult. Cut yourself some slack, pour yourself a glass of wine, and read on for my top tips for those new to reusable menstrual cups.

1. The pop

When you insert a menstrual cup, you need to make sure that it’s popped completely open once its inside your body. Some women can feel the “pop” and some women can’t. You may need to run your finger around the inside of your cup while it’s inserted to see if it feels completely open and round, or slightly smushed or flat on one side. If it feels a little flat, you’ll need to reposition or reinsert the cup.

2. The shimmy

This helps if your cup is flattened or if it’s simply not quite in the right position. To perform the shimmy, grip the base of the cup (or the stem) between your thumb and forefinger and gently wiggle the cup back and forth to help your cup find its perfect position in your body.

3. The twist

The twist can be a bit controversial in that it is super helpful for some, while simply impossible for others. It’s worth a try or two if you’re new to the world of menstrual cups. Just grab the base of your cup and rotate it gently within your body. Some women are able to give it a full turn, while others manage just a slight twist. Either way, it can help your new menstrual cup form a seal and prevent leaks.

Overall, the most important thing is to relax and remind yourself that it’s totally normal to need some time to adjust to a new menstrual product! While you get used to it, just make sure to wear a pantyliner as a back-up (and maybe keep those skin-tight white jeggings in the closet for a few days).

If you need some personalized support, feel free to get in touch with us to ask questions! We’re more than happy to help you get through the learning curve of switching to a menstrual cup.

About the author of this post:

tracy is the owner of GladRags and is passionate about period positivity and empowering women everywhere. In her free time, she likes to read, travel, practice yoga, and hang out with her cats.

 

  • Tara

    My 3 tips:

    Experiment with folds. First I tried the C fold, then the punchdown. Now use a half C fold/punchdown.

    Also if one of your suction holes is inside your fold, it seems to help.

    I still have my cup slip down when I urinate or have a BM so I have to push it back in. It doesn’t lose suction, just needs pushed back up.

    • Those are great tips, thanks for sharing!

  • gjdmama

    I have found that sometimes the key is just making sure you are relaxed. If I have my muscles all tensed up, the cup isn’t going to pop. Sometimes just relaxing my legs and internal muscles does the trick.

    • Totally! I always tell people to take a few deep breaths and calm down — if you are tense, it’s going to be so much more difficult.

  • twiztedtwinz66@gmail.com

    This is an old thread but ill tell you I figured out my cup in a day. You just need to keep fiddling with it. Get ready an hour before you go somewhere. Try as many methods as you want one at a time and wait in between with a panty liner. Once you try something and it doesn’t leak remember that and try it again next time.

  • Cerena

    If I can feel it, it means it’s not in right…correct?

    • Meagan Brockway

      Could be! If the cup is functioning correctly and you don’t have any issues inserting or removing, then perhaps it’s just that the stem of the cup needs to be trimmed — don’t do this before you’re sure you don’t need that extra length, though. If the bottom of the cup is what you’re feeling, then the cup probably isn’t in the right positionin. Try adjusting your angle of insertion in that case!

  • Gabi

    Thanks for all the tips! I’ll try as well.. now another question, is it always a bit painful to take it out? its like the moment Im about to take the last bit out you can feel its stucked (like vacuum sealed) in the vagina, even if I fold it a bit so it gets some air.. I ve realized the faster I take it out the shorter the pain will be, but its still painful, as I am forcing whatever is stucked to get out.. is this normal? Am I damaging my vagina!!? Any tips on this? The first time I got soooo afraid I was seeing myself in hospital with my menstrual cup half way out haha!!!

    • Meagan Brockway

      Hi Gaby! It sounds like the seal isn’t being fully broken during removal. Try re-folding your cup from the rear vaginal entrance (towards your tailbone) as our anatomy is usually a bit more flexible there because there’s no pubic bone in the way. Using one finger, press into the side of the cup to get it almost back into a C-fold. It might be easier for you to introduce air around the cup from that angle. Take things slowly and relax — if you or your muscles are tense (which one would be if they anticipated pain!) then your muscles will tighten, making the whole removal process that much more difficult. Some say that getting started with a cup is uncomfortable while their body gets used to it, but do consult with your doctor if you experience pain.

      • Gabi

        thanks Meagan! The first day was horrible and I panicked! but after that I did what you say, and it worked. thanks a lot!

  • Gabi

    Hi again!! My cup is getting better every month! (I’ve used it twice so far). I have a question in case you have the time to answer, might be helpful for another newie.. I am boiling it for 20 minutes every time I finish the period (not in between as I only take it away to wash it and put it right back), and also I boil it 20 minutes at the beginning of the new period… is this necessary? I mean in the package (its a lunette) it doesn’t say that, but I don’t see any particular instructions for the first use on a period.. What do you do? Thanks a lot!

    • Hi Gabi! It’s not necessary to boil your cup — you can if you want, but washing it thoroughly at the beginning and end of your cycle is enough. If you do choose to boil it, limit the boiling time to just 5 minutes — otherwise your cup may become brittle over time. I personally wash my cup and then soak it in hot soapy water at the end of my cycle. Hope that helps!

  • Beth

    Hi guys, I just started using the diva cup yesterday, the beginning of my cycle. I found it quite complicated at first, but am starting to get the hang of it…. However, there is always spotting on my underwear and it is starting to drive me crazy! My cup is not even half full and it is leaking. Can somebody give me tips on how to prevent leakage? Thank you 🙂