Skip to main content
  • OrganiCup

  • Nixit Menstrual Cup

  • How We Tested

  • What You Should Know About Menstrual Cups

  • Other Menstrual Cups We Tested

  • More Articles You Might Enjoy

organicup menstrual cup on white marble background
Credit: Reviewed / Betsey Goldwasser

The OrganiCup is our favorite all-around cup.

Best Overall
OrganiCup

The OrganiCup, unassuming in is brown cardboard box and single undyed color, ended up edging out every other cup we tried. It comes in three sizes: mini (recommended for teens or “those who need a smaller size”), size A, and size B. You can take a fit quiz on its site, but the main determining factor between sizes A and B is whether or not you have given birth vaginally.

OrganiCup has minimal, plastic-free packaging—not its most important attribute, but a plus to anyone who’s drawn to using menstrual cups for environmental reasons of creating less waste. It also comes with great instructions, which are written inside the box (instead of a separate pamphlet, presumably also to reduce trash). You can also access a thorough how-to on its site that includes step-by-step instructions and a video on how to prepare and insert the cup. Its silicone has a Goldilocks-style consistency—soft enough to fold easily, yet firm enough to pop open and hold its place—and a standard ridged stem to pull on before pinching the base to remove, which one tester found a bit long and clipped it. Some testers experienced slight leakage, but not enough for any major messes. The OrganiCup also went mostly unnoticed during running, walking, sleeping, and at least one tester’s HIIT workout class. You can wear it for up to 12 hours before emptying, though you may want to dump it sooner if you have a heavy flow.

The cup is made of untinted, translucent silicone, so it could get discolored over time—still, all our testers found it easy to clean. If you experience discoloration, OrganiCup claims that mixing one part hydrogen peroxide and one part water in a bowl and leaving the OrganiCup in it overnight will make it look “almost like new.” The company says you may use a single OrganiCup for up to 10 years, but you should get a new one if it starts to crack or feel sticky.

OrganiCup wants you to spend at least 90 days with your cup to adjust to the learning curve that’s customary with menstrual cups. If you aren’t satisfied after that time, you may email to request a size exchange or refund (minus the cost of shipping). You can do this up to a year after purchasing your cup. This applies wherever you buy the cup.

Pros

  • Easy to fold and keep in place

  • Great instructions

  • Less wasteful packaging than most

Cons

  • Stem may be too long for some

nixit menstrual cup on white marble background
Credit: Reviewed / Betsey Goldwasser

Nixit makes our favorite disc-style cup.

Best Disc-Style Cup
Nixit Menstrual Cup

Most menstrual cups have a bell shape and stay in place by suction against the cervix. For some people—for example, those who use IUDs, which have the possibility of becoming dislodged—that might not be ideal. For a suction-free cup, your best bet is Nixit, a disc-shaped cup that gets inserted into the vagina and propped against the pubic bone to stay in place. It looks a lot like a diaphragm (a once-popular barrier method of birth control), with a thick circular rim and a thinner, membrane-like center. It’s made of silicone and comes in one size that measures about three inches across. It also comes in one color, a sort of Silly Putty pinkish hue, but you can choose the color of the box it comes in (if that matters to you).

To insert it, squeeze it in half and guide one end back toward the tailbone. Then, tuck it up in front and make sure it’s in place by standing up and seeing if you can feel it (you shouldn’t) or if it moves. Because it’s flatter than bell-shaped cups and made of more flexible material, the company says you can have penetrative sex while using it. However, it isn’t intended as a method of birth control, even though it looks like one. Our testers didn’t try this, but some reviewers on Nixit’s site say it’s possible and enjoyable. Its unique shape also allows for “auto-dumping”—that is, when you use the bathroom, it can empty itself out—though this requires some bearing down and may need to be nudged back into place when you’re done.

All testers said the cup had a steep learning curve for insertion and removal due to its placement and lack of stem—you have to reach pretty far up to get it in and out, which may not be for everyone. Some testers commented that it felt a little too big, despite its one-size-fits-all promise. The lack of suction was divisive, too—some loved it, and others felt it made the cup seem more precarious, even if it wasn’t actively leaking. In most cases, the Nixit’s quirks were worth it to our testers.

“Once I got the hang of it all, I loved it,” wrote a tester. “It felt much more secure than any other cup I've used in the past—100% would recommend it to people who aren't afraid of a slightly more involved cup process. But there wasn't any question of proper suction or making sure it had popped open.”

Nixit doesn’t specify its life expectancy. Its site says it can last for “years” and to use your best judgment when it comes to replacing it—if you notice punctures, tears, or tackiness in the material, it’s time for a new one. Nixit does not offer refunds or returns, but if the cup isn’t working for you, email the company for additional guidance. A Nixit rep told us that it often takes people three cycles to get comfortable using the device, but with a little "back and forth," they're able to get it working for most people.

Pros

  • Stays in place without suction

Cons

  • High insertion and removal learning curve

Related content

How We Tested

menstrual cups on white marble background
Credit: Reviewed / Betsey Goldwasser

We went through a lot of different menstrual cups.

The Tester

I’m Sara Hendricks, the health and fitness editor at Reviewed. As part of my job, I’ve covered just about every piece of at-home workout equipment you can think of. And while I love my bikes and treadmills, I have a special passion for menstrual health and products, such as period underwear and organic tampons and pads. Menstrual cups have been on my radar for years, but I’d never gotten around to trying one out—despite the rave reviews from my friends who love their DivaCups, Saalts, and others—until I embarked on this comprehensive review. And then, well, I tried a lot of them.

The Tests

woman testing menstrual cups
Credit: Reviewed / Betsey Goldwasser

We subjected all menstrual cups to lab testing.

Testing the menstrual cups involved a considerable amount of time, people, and products. First, we ordered every menstrual cup we wanted to test to Reviewed’s labs. There, we tested capacity by filling them with blood meal (a kind of fertilizer made from animal blood that has a liquid, blood-like consistency when mixed with water); washed them according to the manufacturer’s instructions; and folded them to rate how pliable they were.

Then we divvied up the 15 cups among a group of 11 Reviewed staffers who get periods (including me). Some testers had used cups before but most hadn’t. Ultimately, each cup was tested by three different people. Testers tried the cups during the day and at night and filled out surveys that gauged the cups’ fit, feel, manufacturer instructions, and overall experience and ease of use.

I also took a look at what, by the end of testing, we determined to be the most important thing to consider when buying a menstrual cup for the first time: its refund or replacement policy. When it comes down to it, the only person who can tell if a cup is going to be right for you is you—sure, there are certain things you can gauge ahead of time to determine the likelihood of it working for you. But because everyone’s body is different, and a menstrual cup is something that requires getting very intimate with the body, someone else’s recommendation can only get you so far.

Obviously, there’s no returning the cups once they're used. But because most people justify the $30-ish price of a single menstrual item with the promise of many years of repeated use and much less waste, it’s a bummer if you can only use it once (if at all) before it ends up lost in a drawer in your bathroom. For this reason, we wanted our top pick to be a brand with a fair, comprehensive refund or replacement policy.

What You Should Know About Menstrual Cups

nixit menstrual disc and saalt menstrual cup
Credit: Reviewed / Betsey Goldwasser

We tested disc- and bell-shaped cups.

What is a Menstrual Cup?

First, the basics: A menstrual cup is a small, flexible cup that's inserted into the vagina during one’s period to capture the flow before it exits the body. Most (and all the ones we tested) are made of medical-grade silicone, though you can find some made from latex, natural rubber, or disposable plastic. Most cups are also shaped like a bell, though some look more like a disc (for context, we tested 13 bell-style cups and two disc-style cups). All cups collect menstrual fluid internally, rather than absorbing it internally (like a tampon) or externally (like pads or period underwear). Most can be worn for up to 12 hours before emptying and cleaning, depending on your flow. The ones we tested ranged from holding 24 to 48 milliliters—up to 33 milliliters more than even a super-plus tampon can hold.

All the bell-shaped cups we tested have tiny holes at the top to create suction (and allow you to release it) and a stem at the base, while discs have no stem or holes. Most of the stems are ridged, though some have a ball grip or loop. Some people may find they need to trim the stem so it doesn’t extend outside the body or potentially poke you when you move around.

How Do You Use a Menstrual Cup?

folding menstrual cup
Credit: Reviewed / Betsey Goldwasser

There are many different ways to fold a menstrual cup.

Any cup you buy should have some instructions on what to do the first time you use it (the clarity and ease of accessing this information is something we tested for in each of the menstrual cups, too). But for most of them, the process is pretty similar: First, boil it for at least five minutes to ensure it is sterilized before insertion. Then wash your hands with soap and water and get into a position where you have easy access to your vagina, such as propping one leg up on the tub or sitting on the toilet—if you usually use tampons, you can get into a similar position as you would when inserting one.

Next, fold the menstrual cup—again, the cup you use should provide instructions on how to do this—and gently guide it in until it’s just under your cervix. You may then need to twist it or nudge it to pop it fully open and create a suction-based “seal” that keeps the cup in place and prevents leaks.

Never used a menstrual cup before? “Make sure you allot enough time for it,” says Cybill Esguerra, MD, assistant professor of gynecology and obstetrics at Johns Hopkins Medical School. “Some might find it easier to use some kind of lubricant like warm water or a water-based jelly during insertion.”

If you’re having trouble—or just feel intimidated—see if you can get your doctor to help out. “I would encourage women to bring their menstrual cup to their gynecologist if they can’t get it in and say ‘Can you help me with this?’ I’ve done it with diaphragms and I’d be happy to do it with menstrual cups,” says Esguerra.

To remove the cup, wash your hands and get into the same position you used to insert it. Pull the cup’s stem until you can comfortably pinch the base of the cup, which breaks the seal created during insertion. Gently guide it out, dump the fluid in the toilet or sink, wash both the cup and your hands with warm water and mild soap, and rinse well before reinserting.

How Can You Find the Right Menstrual Cup for You?

Some cup brands recommend picking your cup based on the heaviness of your period flow and/or whether you’ve given birth vaginally. Others suggest measuring the location of your cervix—a useful recommendation, but a lot of people don’t know where their cervix is (or, at least, can’t be as certain as they are about their menstrual period flow or if they’ve had a baby).

However, it’s possible to find your cervix, if you're so inclined to try. First, wash your hands. Then, Esguerra recommends getting into a position where you feel comfortable—maybe squatting or having a foot hiked up on the toilet seat—and gently insert your longest finger into the vagina and advance it until you feel something firm. “A lot of people will describe the feeling of their cervix as feeling like the tip of their nose,” says Esguerra. “It feels very different from a vaginal wall, which is soft and pliable. If a woman isn’t sure if she’s finding her cervix, I would do a systematic, 360-degree [motion]. Anything that’s firm, that’s probably your cervix.”

Once you’ve identified your cervix, you can gauge its depth—and therefore whether you would prefer a longer/larger or shorter/smaller menstrual cup—by taking the tip of your thumb and marking it against your inserting finger, measuring the space from the cervix to the opening of the vagina.

Some cup brands recommend doing this when you’re on your period, because your cervix’s location can shift slightly when you’re menstruating, but Esguerra says it doesn’t make much of a difference. “Some women are more uncomfortable and crampy on their period so it might not be better for them to do it at that time,” she says.” So I’d just go with whatever [your] personal preference is. It shouldn’t change the size of the cup.”

If this seems like a hassle, you have another option: Ask your gynecologist, especially if you’re due for a Pap smear or pelvic exam anyway. “I am very much of the mindset that if a question pops into your head to ask your gynecologist, you should ask it,” Esguerra says. “If you’re having a routine exam, especially if you’re getting a Pap smear, your provider is looking for your cervix. I think it would be totally appropriate for a woman to ask her gynecologist at the time of her exam.”

How Long Can You Keep a Menstrual Cup?

Menstrual cups have a long lifespan, which makes them appealing to anyone looking to save money and reduce waste. Most cups can be used for years, until they develop weird textures or holes, which could be up to a decade—however, this requires taking care of your cup. Instructions vary among brands, but in most cases, cups should be rinsed and wiped clean before being reinserted and boiled before and after each cycle to sanitize them. You can also buy sterilizing pods for menstrual cups.

You’ll also want to read the instructions for how many hours you can wear your cup before emptying—most can be kept in for up to 12 hours at a stretch—and the best ways to keep it in tip-top shape.

Can You Get Toxic Shock Syndrome from a Menstrual Cup?

Some brands claim that using menstrual cups instead of tampons can reduce the likelihood of Toxic Shock Syndrome (TSS), a rare but risky illness that’s linked to prolonged tampon use. In truth, the answer is a little tricky. TSS is only estimated to occur between 0.8 to 3.4 per 100,000 people per year for all causes, both menstrual-product related and not. Pads and tampons are more common than menstrual cup use in the greater population. Those factors make it tough to find data on the risks of TSS from using menstrual cups specifically. Menstrual cups have been linked to at least five cases of TSS, so, though more study is needed, the risk of TSS when using a menstrual cup is not zero. “If I were counseling a patient, I wouldn’t tell her to base her decision of whether to use a tampon or menstrual cup on the risk of TSS,” Esguerra says. “Regardless of what you’re using, you should follow the guidelines on the package to not leave it in for any longer than what the product recommends—if you use it for longer it can increase the risk of an infection.”

When using a cup, if you feel symptoms of TSS—fever, abnormal vaginal discharge, abdominal pain—take it out and call your doctor. Other signs that something may not be right include difficulty urinating, vaginal burning, irritation, inflammation, or sharp pain. Chances are good that any discomfort is just a sign that it’s not inserted correctly, so all you need to do is remove and reinsert it (possibly with the help of a doctor), but there may be something else going on. When in doubt, get in touch with a medical professional.

Can You Use a Menstrual Cup with an IUD?

Esguerra says a common concern among her patients is “inadvertent removal or expulsion” of an IUD if they start to use a menstrual cup. Because most menstrual cups rely on suction, it's possible (though not inevitable) to dislodge the IUD when removing the cup.

However, there are ways to use both safely. Esguerra recommends taking extra care to break the seal by pinching the base of the cup before pulling it out so you don’t tug at the IUD’s strings. You may also want to get your IUD’s strings clipped. “Some providers offer a service to cut the [IUD] strings flush with the cervix so there’s less of an opportunity to pull out the IUD strings,” she says. “That’s something to talk about with your provider if you’re committed to using both products.”

Alternatively, the disc-style cups do not use suction, so these may be a better option for someone with an IUD.

What are the Best Cups for Beginners?

cora, flex, and lena menstrual cups
Credit: Reviewed / Betsey Goldwasser

The Cora, Flex, and Lena cups may be good options for beginners.

We didn’t find that any cup was definitively better or worse for menstrual-cup beginners—in most cases, the best cup for a new user depends on their anatomy and flow. But some cups have features that may make them more appealing to novices (and our testers seemed to like, too). The Cora cup has a finger indentation that shows you where and how to fold it, which is helpful if you’ve never folded a cup before. The Flex cup has a string that allows it to be removed like a tampon (though this may make it a no-go for anyone with an IUD). First-time cup users also liked the Lena Cup, which is shaped more like a tulip than a bell, which made it easier to fold and remove for some.

When you’re just starting out, you may also want to avoid the disc-style cups. These must be placed deeper into the vagina and don’t have a stem, so they’re a little trickier to insert and remove.


Other Menstrual Cups We Tested

Product image of Lunette Menstrual Cup
Lunette Menstrual Cup

Like the OrganiCup, the silicone Lunette cup has a mid-range firmness level that makes it relatively easy to fold yet it pops nicely into place. It comes in two sizes, Model 1 (for a “light to normal” flow) and Model 2 (for a “normal to heavy” flow), and a range of colors (including undyed). Each tester found it effective for different activities, including walking and running around, sitting, and sleeping, and experienced no significant leaking. Most testers also thought it felt more durable than others—though, surprisingly, Lunette recommends replacing its cup every one or two years (a lot shorter than others) or when it has any tears, holes, or “just isn’t in good condition anymore.”

The cup itself is a little shorter and wider than others, which most testers found comfortable. However, its ridged stem is longer than other cups, possibly because the Lunette is slightly more squat. This may make it useful for grabbing, but the majority of our testers found it irritating and had to trim it.

After 90 days of use, you can request a refund or new size for up to six months after your original purchase—so you have about three months total to figure out a new size or get a refund.

Pros

  • Easy to fold and keep in place

  • Comes in wide range of colors

Cons

  • Long stem

Product image of Lena Menstrual Cup
Lena Menstrual Cup

The Lena Cup is a suction-based menstrual cup, but it has more of a tulip shape than the typical bell one, with an upper lip that curves slightly outward. It comes in two sizes, small (for people with a “normal” flow and a low-to-medium cervix depth) and large (for people with a “heavy” flow) and also offers a “sensitive” cup that’s made of slightly softer silicone. Each of its standard cups are tinted four different colors, but you can get the sensitive cup in two colors, untinted and coral.

Lena claims its shape makes it easier for beginners to use. And, for the most part, staffers who tried it—cup newbies and experienced users alike—liked it. It comes in a box made of recycled paper that includes an instruction manual with everything you might need to know: different kinds of folds and ways to insert it, how you may want to position it based on your cervix height, how to trim the stem if needed, and how to remove the cup for emptying. The outturned lip seemed to help prevent leaks and keep it in place throughout the day. The standard cup is also on the firmer side of ones we tested, but it wasn’t inflexible, so it popped open easily and kept its shape throughout the day.

However, its shape may not work for everyone and could make it a little more difficult to remove. One tester found that the lip made it more noticeable during the day, and when it was time to take it out it was tough to get a good grip on the base to break the seal, even though it has a relatively long stem with ridges. It was easier on the next try, but this may be something to consider if you’re thinking of getting a Lena Cup.

Lena Cup doesn’t specify exactly how long you can keep the cup but says it will last for “years” with proper upkeep. If you don’t like your Lena Cup, you can take advantage of the brand’s Satisfaction Guarantee policy and request a refund or size exchange by emailing the company. The brand does not specify the time frame required for doing this.

Pros

  • Unique shape helps prevent leaks

Cons

  • Difficult to remove

Product image of DivaCup
DivaCup

For most people, DivaCup is the first brand that comes to mind when they think of menstrual cups. And, for the most part, the DivaCup lives up to its good reputation. It comes in three sizes: Model 0 (for ages 18 and under), Model 1 (for ages 18 to 30 with medium flow), and Model 3 (for ages 30 and up and/or heavy flow). The cup comes in undyed silicone only. DivaCup has a longer, narrower shape and shorter stem than most menstrual cups, which makes it ideal for some and not for others.

The longer, narrower shape made it easier than others to insert but it didn’t agree with every tester’s body or flow, and some experienced leaks. The stem also caused some issues—because it’s so much shorter than other brands, looking more like a stub than a full-length stem, testers didn’t complain about it poking as much but some found it harder to grasp for removal. Instead, they found they had to grasp the base of the cup to ease it out.

The DivaCup includes a pamphlet with thorough instructions on how to fold, insert, remove, and clean the cup. Like others, you should boil it before you first use it, but unlike many others, it says you don’t have to boil it between every use as long as you clean it with soap and water. Its silicone material is easy to fold yet is firm enough to pop open once inserted, and all testers said it felt durable and long-lasting.

DivaCup says its cup can last for “several years” with proper care and to replace it if you notice an odor, severe staining, white powdery residue or flaking on the cup, tears or cracks, a texture change, or sudden leaking. All DivaCup sales are final but the company points shoppers toward its customer support staff and Facebook groups for insertion and sizing help.

Pros

  • Folds and pops open easily

  • Durable material

Cons

  • Shorter stem than most

  • Shape may not agree with everyone

Product image of Saalt Cup
Saalt Cup

Saalt is a suction-based menstrual cup with a ridged stem handle that comes in three sizes: “Teen” (for users under 18 years old or with a petite physique and a light/moderate period and low cervix); “Small” (for users with a light/moderate period and/or low cervix); and “Regular” (for users with a moderate/heavy flow and/or high cervix). The Small and Regular cups are also available in two firmness levels—standard and a softer texture intended for users who have tried cups before and experienced sensitivity, cramping, and/or difficulty going to the bathroom with the cup. Like many cups, it comes in several colors and has a quiz to figure out the size and cup type that’s best for you.

All testers tried the standard cup and most liked it. The instructions that came with the cup were helpful and straightforward and the cup was a mid-range level of firmness that made it easy to fold up, insert, and remove. However, all testers experienced trouble creating a seal, which caused some leaking. For most, the leaking was minimal, but one tester wrote that it “continually” leaked, no matter what she did. The Saalt cup’s stem is also a little longer and more spindly than most, so users may have to trim it.

The Saalt cup can last up to 10 years with proper care. All sales are final but Saalt encourages users who are struggling with their cup to email the company or message the brand on Instagram and Saalt will share “every tip and trick” in their book to help you get to “period bliss.”

Pros

  • Easy to insert and remove

Cons

  • Trouble creating a seal

Product image of Pixie Cup - Classic
Pixie Cup - Classic

Pixie Cup is a bell-shaped cup with a ball grip. It comes in three sizes: small (for light flows and/or first time cup users), large (for heavy flows), and XL (for very heavy flows and/or experienced cup users). You can also get a softer cup in the small and large sizes. Like many brands, Pixie offers a quiz to find your cup size, though you have to provide your email to see your results, which some testers objected to. The cups come in a range of colors, but you don’t get to pick—certain colors are designated to each size. The brand also has a “buy one, give one” policy and says it has donated more than 100,000 cups to women in need.

Most testers liked using the Pixie Cup. It comes with thorough, easy-to-follow instructions and, as a bonus, four flushable cleaning wipes—not the most eco-friendly touch, but a nice one if you have to change your cup in a public restroom. The standard Pixie Cup is also on the firmer side, which worked for some and not for others. Some users had trouble inserting the cup—likely due to its firmness—and the seal felt secure once it was created but it was difficult to get it to that point.

The Pixie Cup can last for up to 10 years with proper care. The brand says to replace it if you notice tears or a tacky feeling on the outside. Pixie Cup also is one of the few brands with a 100% money-back guarantee. It isn’t clear on the time frame for requesting a refund but you can start the process on the brand’s contact page.

Pros

  • Comes with cleaning wipes

  • Charitable brand

Cons

  • May be tough to insert

Product image of June Cup
June Cup

The June Cup is usually $30 but it’s currently priced "at cost" for just $6 in response to customers' financial hardships related to COVID-19. It comes in three sizes, mini (for petite or teen users), small (for users who have not given birth vaginally), and large (for users who have given birth vaginally and/or have a heavy flow).

The June Cup is made of undyed silicone. Its stem has a ball at the end of it—as opposed to ridges, which most cups we tested have—which could make it easier for some people to grab and remove.

One thing that’s lacking with the June Cup: detailed instructions. The directions that come with the cup have standard details on insertion, but nothing on removal. This is something that can be found elsewhere, but if you’re a first-time cup user and you bring the pamphlet into the bathroom with you to help you guide it out, you’ll be out of luck.

One tester said with her June Cup, it was sometimes hard to tell if it fully unfolded. “One time, I don't think it did, which resulted in some leakage,” she wrote. Another tester said it was great for sleeping, but largely ineffective when she was moving around during the day.

With proper care, the June Cup can be used for up to five years, though you should replace it if it starts to crack. You can also get your money back if you really don’t like it. June Cup offers “no-questions-asked” refunds or will send you a new cup (for the cost of shipping), if it seems you don’t have the right size. To start a refund or return, send them an email.

Pros

  • Ball grip may be easier to hold

Cons

  • Instructions are lacking

  • Doesn’t always unfold all the way

Product image of Cora Cup
Cora Cup

The Cora cup is suction-based with a ridged pull tab at the base. It’s made of undyed silicone and comes in two sizes: Size 1 (intended for first-time cup users, people with light to medium flows, who do not experience bladder leaks, and/or have not given vaginal birth) and Size 2 (for people with heavier flows, who have given vaginal birth, and/or experience light bladder leaks). Its key distinguishing factor, however, is a thumb-size indentation on its side, which is intended to make it easier to fold.

For all testers, this notch made a difference. It made folding feel more intuitive—that is, it didn’t require bringing the pamphlet into the bathroom, though the instructions are clear and helpful—and prevented the cup from flipping open prematurely during insertion. It also has a raised criss-cross on the base, which some testers found helpful for grasping during removal.

All testers experienced some leaks, however—nothing too terrible, “just a tiny bit, about the same amount as a tampon would during [a moderate flow] day,” one tester wrote. The finger tab also diminishes its liquid capacity somewhat when compared to other cups—both cups retain a few milliliters less than their counterpart sizes in OrganiCup, per our tests and the brands’ specs. So if you have a very heavy flow and want to wear a cup for its max 12-hour time limit, you may want to go with another brand.

The Cora cup can last up to 10 years, though you should replace it if you see any tears or holes. The brand offers a “perfect fit” guarantee. If you are dissatisfied with your cup, contact Cora on its support page and Cora will “make it right.”

Pros

  • Built-in finger indent for easy folding

Cons

  • Lower liquid capacity than most

Product image of Flex Menstrual Cup
Flex Menstrual Cup

If you know of the Flex brand, you may be familiar with its disposable menstrual disc. But it also sells a menstrual cup. The cup comes in two sizes, “Slim Fit” (for people who haven’t had kids and/or with a lighter flow) and “Full Fit” (for people who have had 2+ vaginal births and/or a heavier flow) and one color (black). Its main distinction is the pull tab it has in place of a stem, which allows the cup to be removed more like a tampon.

The Flex cup comes with a thorough pamphlet that includes helpful insertion, removal, and cleaning instructions and two complimentary disposable menstrual discs. When you order the cup, you’ll also receive an email with a video that walks you through each of the steps.

As for the pull tab: It works as Flex claims. To remove the cup, gently tug on the tab, which breaks the seal. This requires less maneuvering than reaching inside and trying to find a stem and pinch the base of a cup. For this reason, it may be easier for people with dexterity limitations. However, because it breaks the seal suddenly, it may not be the best option for people with IUDs. The pull tab can make removal a little messier and, ahem, noisier, but once you get used to it, it’s simple to do.

The pull tab has some drawbacks, though. It can be threaded in and out of a small hole in the base, so you must make sure it’s fully tightened before you insert it. One tester experienced significant leaking issues and felt that the pull tab exacerbated them. The pull tab itself also takes up space, which makes it more difficult to fold—one tester said it “flopped” open multiple times when she was inserting it because the tab kept getting in the way. Finally, it’s a little more complicated to clean than most, first because the pull tab creates an extra element to wash and, second, because the cup is all black in color, it’s tough to tell if the whole thing is clean.

Flex says its cup can last for “years.” Flex does not have an explicit refund policy but says to reach out to its “Flexperts” using its contact form and promises to “work with you if it doesn't fit, and may replace it with the other size.”

Pros

  • Pull tab for easy removal

Cons

  • Pull tab makes it harder to fold

  • Difficult to clean

Product image of MeLuna Menstrual Cup
MeLuna Menstrual Cup

Of all the cups we tested, MeLuna offers the most customization: It sells a standard cup in four sizes and a ”shorty” cup, for users with low cervixes, also in four sizes. It also lets you choose whether you want a stem, ring, or ball grip and offers standard or “sport” firmness in all cup sizes, with the “sport” being firmer for athletic users who ostensibly have stronger pelvic walls. It also comes in three colors—blue, purple, and untinted.

This range of options all but guarantees that the perfect size for you is somewhere in there, but it’s a little overwhelming to sort through everything. MeLuna offers a sizing quiz and a live chat to help figure it out, but just looking at the website can feel like a formidable task (especially if you aren’t familiar with your cervix depth, which MeLuna uses as a key deciding factor when determining which cup to get).

Ultimately, most testers felt “meh” about MeLuna. The suggested sizes based on the quizzes weren’t totally accurate and some testers experienced some leaking. One tester (a self-described fitness buff) said her standard-firmness cup came out “warped” and didn't pop fully back into shape after using it for the first time, and led to slight leakage.

MeLuna says its cup can last up to three years. It does not offer refunds but will provide help troubleshooting and a 40% discount on a new cup up to one year after your purchase if you aren’t happy with your cup. That athletic tester opted to give MeLuna another try in the Sport firmness, and found the reordering process to be a cinch, with a discount code provided after filling out a short form regarding the original purchase.

Pros

  • Lots of customization options

Cons

  • Can be confusing to find the right size

Product image of Blossom Cup
Blossom Cup

The Blossom cup comes in two sizes (small, for lighter flows, and large, for heavier flows), and a range of colors including undyed. It’s made of silicone and has a stem with ridges for removal.

One key thing to be aware of: The Blossom cup is very firm. This could be a plus, but it caused problems with testers for insertion and removal. Its firmness meant it tended to pop open before it was fully in place, which was annoying for some and straight-up painful for others. It also meant the stem and base had less give, so it didn’t respond to gentle tugging for removal. However, testers said it felt secure once it was fully inserted (though one tester was never able to get to that point) and did not experience any leaks.

With proper care, the Blossom cup can last for up to 10 years. The brand has a 100% customer satisfaction policy and says to email for a full refund if you are not satisfied. However, it is unclear whether this policy applies to cups bought on Amazon, and the brand did not respond to my emails asking (not a great sign for securing that refund).

Pros

  • Feels secure once inserted

Cons

  • Too firm

  • Difficult to insert and remove

Product image of Dutchess Cup
Dutchess Cup

The Dutchess is a standard suction-based menstrual cup. It comes in two sizes, A (which, somewhat confusingly, is the larger size and intended for people with heavier periods) and B (for users with a light to medium flow). It comes in a range of colors.

Testers liked this cup, even if no one was obsessed with it when they finished trying it. It’s on the softer side of cups we tested, which makes it easy to fold but was sometimes difficult to ensure it opened all the way and stayed in place throughout the day. The softness also made it feel a little flimsy, as though it may not last for as long as the brand claims—up to 10 years.

The brand does not offer any refund or support policy that we could find.

Pros

  • Easy to fold

Cons

  • Difficult to fully open

  • Feels flimsy

Product image of Intimina Ziggy Cup
Intimina Ziggy Cup

The Intimina Ziggy is a disc-style cup. Like the Nixit—the only other disc we tested—it looks like a diaphragm, with a firm silicone rim and thin, membrane-like pocket to catch fluid. It comes in one size and one color (hot pink).

The Ziggy’s packaging is almost entirely made of plastic. It comes with a tiny pamphlet with extremely tiny font that isn’t much use (and, confusingly, also contains directions for Intimina’s other products, including instructions on which batteries to get for its electronic kegel devices). You can find better instructions on Intimina’s site, but that may involve bringing your phone or laptop with you to the bathroom. To insert the Ziggy, you squeeze the edges together, push it inside and toward the back, and tip it against the pubic bone. This took testers a few tries to get it and, for some, it never quite felt right. Testers also experienced issues with the pocket not opening all the way once it was inserted, which meant it didn’t always catch fluid effectively. “I used a diaphragm for years, so I thought this cup would be easy for me, but I could never get it to stop leaking,” wrote one tester.

On the plus side, because it has a flatter fit, the brand claims it can be worn during penetrative sex. Another tester tried this (on a lighter day, when leaking was less of a concern) and found that it worked well—so, if you’re willing to do some trial-and-error testing for (potentially) less messy period sex, the Intimina Ziggy may be worth a shot.

The Intimina Ziggy can be used for up to two years. Intimina does not provide specific information about refunds but you can email “if you have any questions regarding an Intimina purchase, how we make our products, or intimate well-being in general.”

Pros

  • Doesn't use suction

Cons

  • Doesn’t always unfold correctly

  • Sometimes pops out of place

Product image of Intimina Lily Cup
Intimina Lily Cup

The Intimina Lily is a suction-based cup with a unique shape. It’s curvier than other cups and made of very soft silicone that the company claims helps it roll up as small as a tampon and align with most people’s anatomy once it’s inserted. It comes in two sizes: A (for those with a medium flow and/or have not given birth vaginally) and B (for those with a heavy flow and/or those who have given birth vaginally. It comes in one bubblegum-pink color.

Unfortunately, it didn’t work well for any of our testers. It comes with an instructional pamphlet, but the font is nearly illegible (and appears to be a standard pamphlet that comes with all Intimina products, not one that’s specific to the brand). You can access much better instructions on Intimina’s site, but if you didn’t know to look for it, you’d be lost. Our testers also found the shape confusing. The soft silicone helped it fold up into a compact roll, but it was difficult—and, for some testers, impossible—to get it to open all the way and oriented correctly to create an effective seal. “I think perhaps with a long learning curve, this cup could work and it’s nice how soft the silicone is, but for me it was too hard to figure out how to use,” one tester wrote.

Its smallest size is still pretty big, too, so people with light flows and/or shallower cervixes may want to try the Lily Cup One, an extra-small version aimed at beginners. The brand also recommends you wear it for up to eight hours—less than most other cups, which allow up to 12.

The Lily Cup lasts for up to 10 years. Intimina does not provide specific information about refunds but you can email “if you have any questions regarding an Intimina purchase, how we make our products, or intimate well-being in general.”

Pros

  • Easy to roll up

Cons

  • Odd shape

  • Can only wear it for eight hours

  • Doesn’t always open up correctly

Meet the tester

Sara Hendricks

Sara Hendricks

Editor

@sarajhendricks

Sara Hendricks is an editor with Reviewed covering health and fitness.

See all of Sara Hendricks's reviews

Checking our work.

Our team is here for one purpose: to help you buy the best stuff and love what you own. Our writers, editors, and lab technicians obsess over the products we cover to make sure you're confident and satisfied. Have a different opinion about something we recommend? Email us and we'll compare notes.

Shoot us an email