How to Clean a Menstrual Cup: Everything you Need to Know

What are Menstrual Cups?

Menstrual Cups are bell-shaped cylinders that are used in place of tampons and sanitary napkins. They are made of medical grade silicone and collect menstrual fluid. They are reusable and can last for years if looked after correctly. You’ll learn more about this in the rest of the article!

The use of the right vaginal products is of utmost important to avoid the chance of discomfort and infections. Products like tampons which are made up of cotton and rayon absorb the protective fluid of the vagina, leading to disruption in normal pH levels. There is also the risk of Toxic Shock Syndrome (TSS) associated with tampon use. This is not the case with menstrual cups.

The most popular menstrual cup in the world is the Diva Cup. Manufactured in Canada, it’s been around for years and has thousands of satisfied customers. This is a top-quality period cup from a company you can trust. You can check out the Diva Cup for yourself on Amazon:

Now, let’s get into all the details about how to clean a menstrual cup.

How to Clean a Menstrual Cup

Diva cups and other period cups are considered to be a more hygienic option over traditional sanitary pads or tampons. Menstrual cups are made up of medical grade materials like silicone, which is non-absorbent. This means that it doesn’t absorb the essential vaginal fluid. But for using it, proper cleaning is required in order to avoid the chance of infections or itching. Since it is reusable, it has to be washed between uses and cycles in order to ensure hygiene and durability of the product.

The first thing to remember while inserting or removing the diva cup, is to wash your hands thoroughly with soap and warm water. For the purpose of cleaning the menstrual cupit should be washed thoroughly with something like the DivaWash. You should do this every time you remove and empty your cup. Then, reinsert the clean cup after being sure to rinse any cleaning residue off of it.

You can also use warm water along with unscented, mild, water-based soap if you prefer not to spend money on another product for your bathroom. However, the DivaWash really does get it squeaky clean in a way that plain soap and water doesn’t.

How to Clean a Menstrual Cup Away from Home

If you are not able to wash your menstrual cup at home, for example while using public restrooms, the contents should be emptied in the toilet and wiped with a dry or damp tissue. You can carry a small package of baby wipes in your purse or bag in order to clean your hands before and after doing this.

If you are travelling in second or third world countries, it is advisable to wash it with only drinking water. It is important to never to use lubricant for inserting the menstrual cup inside in order to reduce wear and tear of your cup. Use a bit of water if necessary when inserting it.

Never use These Things to Clean your Diva Cup

You should never use products like vinegar, scented soaps, hand sanitizer, pre-moistened wipes, tea-tree oil, bleach, dish-washing detergent, or harsh chemicals for the purpose of cleaning your menstrual cup. If they are used, they’ll  harm your period cup and degrade the silicone.

Pay Attention to the 4 Holes

While cleaning your Diva Cup (and other similar period cups), it is important to pay attention to the holes under its rim. Not all sanitary cups have them, but many do. These help in creating a seal in order to secure the cup in proper position. However, fluid gets stuck in them quite easily.

You can also soak the diva cup in warm water for some time and then clean the holes with a soft toothbrush, kept separately for this purpose. In case the holes require extra cleaning, they can be washed under lukewarm running water in order to remove debris. A tooth pick can also be used for clearing the debris; which should be discarded after this. But, a pin should never be used for this purpose as it may damage it and cause you to have to replace it sooner than necessary.

How to Clean a Menstrual Cup: Check out the Stem

Another problem area is the menstrual cup stem. Some of them are flat, but others are hollow (the Diva Cup for example). If the stem of your menstrual cup is hollow, be sure to clean the inside carefully. You can use a toothbrush or a wet Q-Tip.

How to Clean a Menstrual Cup: End of Cycle Cleaning

At the end of the cycle, your menstrual cup should be washed with mild soap and warm water. This can optionally be followed by boiling of the diva cup in an open pot for about ten to fifteen minutes. Menstrual Cups should be never kept unattended while boiling, as it might get burnt and would require replacement.

Related: How to Deep Clean a Menstrual Cup

After cleaning, it should be dried and kept in a place which allows proper circulation such as a breathable cotton pouch. A pouch is often included along with your menstrual cup when you buy it. Menstrual cups should never be kept in an airtight container or plastic bag because it would not allow moisture to evaporate and it can grow harmful bacteria. With proper care, a menstrual cup can be used for a long time; a year or even longer. The Keeper, made of latex instead of silicone can even last for a decade or longer.

The best product for cleaning your menstrual cup is the DivaCup DivaWash® Natural DivaCup Cleaner. You can easily get this top-quality menstrual cup cleaning product on Amazon:

How to Clean a Menstrual Cup: The Summary

The moral of this story is that it’s actually not to difficult to keep your menstrual cup clean and in tip-top shape by following a few of these simple rules as mentioned above. Soap and water, or something like the DivaWash is all you need. And of course, don’t leave your menstrual cup in an airtight container between periods. A bit of air and you’ll be fine. Take care of your menstrual cup and it will last for years.

We hope you found the answer to your question, “How to clean a menstrual cup.”