Cheap Menstrual Cups: Should you Buy Them?
A common question that many people have is whether or not cheap menstrual cups are a good buy. Some of the older, more established menstrual cups such as the Moon Cup, Diva Cup or Lunette Cup can be up in the $30+ range. This seems quite expensive for a small piece of medical grade silicone!
These menstrual cups that I just mentioned are made in the UK, Canada, and Finland respectively. The high price is partly due to the manufacturing country. Of course things are more expensive to make in the Western world than in China. But, with the Western world (See: North American Made Menstrual Cups + European Made Cups) comes good conditions for workers, safety standards and assurance of quality raw materials.
However, for people on a very limited budget, this can be too much money, especially considering that you see menstrual cups on Amazon or Ebay for $5-10, such as the Hengsong Cup, Aiwo, BodyBay Cup, the Day and Night Cup, Leasen Cup, OTBBA Cup, the SkinCo Cup, or the Vida Cup. But, are these cheap menstrual cups a good buy? Why would you spend $30 or more for something you can get for 10? Some of them are even as cheap as 2 for $10. Isn’t it crazy not to spend less money if it’s possible? Let’s answer those important questions about cheap menstrual cups here.
Menstrual Cup Materials
The best menstrual cups are made from top-quality medical-grade silicone. This is part of the reason why the best menstrual cups brands are up in the $30+ range-the materials they use simply cost more. The older, established companies source their materials carefully. You’ll notice that the more expensive menstrual cups have no strong smell to them when they arrive at your house. This is because of the higher quality of materials used. They also don’t take on any smell, even after years of use.
However, the cheap menstrual cups skimp on this part of it. They may indeed use medical grade silicone, but it certainly won’t be the top-quality stuff that will last for years. In some cases, it’s unclear whether or not it’s medical grade.
You’ll notice that the cheapest menstrual cups often have a very strong chemical smell to them. This is due to using such cheap, low-quality materials. For something that you insert into your body, it’s not a great risk to take. Remember, you’ll be wearing your menstrual cup INSIDE your body for up to a week every month. Don’t you want to ensure that it’s the highest quality product you can get?
With cheap menstrual cups, durability will be an issue as well. You’ll likely find that you have to replace your cheap menstrual cup sooner than you want to, even with careful cleaning. The cheapest silicone just won’t stand up to use over time. Good quality cups can last for up to 10 years. Considering this, and how many boxes of tampons a single menstrual cup can replace, $30 or so isn’t that much to spend.
The most expensive menstrual cups are manufactured in the Western World.
This is because they usually use the best-quality materials as well as pay their employees a living wage. However, the benefit of this is that you know exactly what you’re getting. In this case, it’s a product that is 100% safe to use. These days, there are a few cheaper, but still high-quality menstrual cups coming out of the USA including the Lena Cup and the Anigan Evacup. Both of these are top-quality cups that we highly recommend here, especially if you’re looking to save a bit of cash.
The cheapest menstrual cups are often manufactured in China. Resellers source products through Alibaba, ship them to the Amazon warehouse, put up a description and a few pictures on Amazon and then sell to you! They often have no vested interest in women’s health, nor in selling a top-quality product at a fair price. The reviews are are often fake, and the descriptions on Amazon are riddled with spelling and grammatical errors.
Period Cup Product Reviews and Fit:
The more expensive menstrual cups have been around a long time, which means that they have a lot of product reviews. In some cases, 1000 or more. This gives you a very accurate portrayal of the strengths and weaknesses of that particular period cup.
The cheap menstrual cups have only come onto the market very recently and have one of two problems:
- No reviews. It’s hard to know what the pros and cons are of that specific cup without at least 20 user reviews on Amazon. Reviews by a verified purchaser are even better.
- Lots of reviews, but most are bought/faked (too over the top). It’s usually pretty obvious which reviews are real, and which ones have been paid for.
It’s hard to tell whether or not the cheaper menstrual cups are good, or not because of the lack of real reviews. My advice is to always wait another year or two until some real reviews come up and then you’ll be able to make a more informed decision. It’s simply too early to tell right now. In that year or two, you might even find that the cup is no longer being sold. Many of these cheap period cups come and go.
You’ll usually find that the cheap cups start out with a very high user rating of 4.7 or 4.8/5. This is because it’s easy for companies to buy reviews. However, once real reviews start to come in, the user rating takes a nosedive. Most people aren’t happy with these very cheap cups because they’re often too flimsy to insert correctly. Leaking is a huge problem with the vast majority of cheap menstrual cups. If it’s too flimsy, it’s very difficult to get the cup to open once it’s inside of you.
What’s Included with Cheap Menstrual Cups:
With the more expensive menstrual cups, you’ll get a complete set of instructions for insertion and removal, tips for cleaning and also a cloth storage bag. It’ll come in a nice box too. It’s entirely suitable for giving as a gift to somebody.
I’ve read reviews about some of the cheap menstrual cups where the cup came, by itself, in a vacuum packed bag. That was it! No instructions, no box, no storage bag.
Ethical Concerns for the Cheapest Menstrual Cups:
I personally like to support companies who put money into research about women’s health. Companies like Moon Cup and Diva Cup are leading the way in researching about feminine hygiene and they actively advocate for women. They have spent countless hours researching about what the best shape and design is for their period cups.
One of my new favourite cups is the Ruby Cup. For every menstrual cup that they sell, in store or online, they donate one cup to a person in need. Menstrual cups in the hands of people in developing countries means fewer days or work or school missed. This in turn means great economic advantages. We wish that more menstrual cup companies would follow suit.
The more expensive menstrual cups are also manufactured in the Western world, which means a living wage and fair treatment for the workers. I personally like to support companies like this as well.
The cheap menstrual cups made in China? You could say none of these things for them.
Sketchy Marketing Tactics
While many of the cheap menstrual cup companies employ some questionable marketing tactics, we’ll focus on two of them specifically, the Vida Cup and the Day + Night Cup.
The Vida Cup
The Vida Cup is clearly a rip-off of the popular and excellent Diva Cup. Notice how they just switch around the “V” and the “D.” This is clearly to confuse people. If you read the comments for the Vida Cup, you’ll notice that there were actually people who bought the Vida, thinking it was the Diva Cup. And, they were most certainly disappointed because instead of one of the best menstrual cups on the market today, they got a piece of junk.
The Day + Night Cup
Another company with questionable marketing is the Day and Night Cup. This isn’t their actual name, because they don’t have one. They just say things like, “MoonCup,” “Diva Cup,” or “Ruby Cup” in their title and product descriptions. I myself, who has reviewed almost 50 menstrual cups got confused and thought this one was the actual Ruby Cup. It was only when the company contacted me that I realized my mistake (Sorry!).
People most certainly buy this cup, thinking that they’re getting the top-quality one (Ruby Cup, Diva Cup, etc.). What they get is a piece of junk.
Cheap Menstrual Cups: Are They Worth It?
My short answer is no, cheap menstrual are most certainly not worth it. The deciding factor for me is most definitely my health! A menstrual cup is something that you insert into your body. I certainly wouldn’t take this kind of risk with one of the cheap period cups.
Think about it this way: Even if you spend $30 on a menstrual cup, you’ll end up saving that money in less six months because you’re not buying pads and tampons. In the medium to long-term, you’re saving money so a little bit more on the initial outlay really isn’t so bad.
The Top Menstrual Cup Brands:
If you’re looking to buy a menstrual cup, don’t go for the cheapest one you find on Amazon. They are terrible quality, and you’ll end up buying one of the more expensive ones in the end anyway. Don’t waste your money on junk!
Instead, consider any of the following top menstrual cup brands. They are made from the highest-quality medical grade silicone by companies who stand behind their products. It’ll be money well spent! You’re sure to find one that will suit your budget, taste and body type on this list.