Menstrual cup leaking can be common when using a cup for the first time. Find out solutions to leaking below!
A correctly inserted and correctly sized cup should mean no leaks while being worn. Bear in mind that it is still advised to wear a panty liner while you get used to using a cup as it is a learning process that can take 1-3 cycles to completely master. If you are experiencing menstrual cup leaking, try the following suggestions:
Ensure you have the correct size menstrual cup
The main reason for women experiencing menstrual cup leaking is due to an incorrectly sized cup. This is usually an issue where women have purchased the smaller size. If you are over 30yrs old or have had children, most brands will recommend the larger cup. As we age, our pelvic floor and vaginal muscles weaken, meaning we need a wider cup to ensure a proper seal. Most women of any age or stage in life can get away with using a larger size cup, however, not many women over 30 can use a smaller cup.
Ensure the cup has fully opened and formed a seal
Once the cup is inserted, grasp the base of the cup and twist it around as far as you can in a 360 degree circle. Do a few squats, or move your hips in a couple of wide circles. Sort of like you were spinning a hula hoop. Once you have done this, run your finger around the base of the cup to ensure it has fully opened and is not scrunched/collapsed in any spots.
It can also be helpful to give the stem of the cup a gentle downwards tug once it has opened. This can help ensure a proper seal has formed.
Dry the cup
Use a piece of toilet paper to dry the rim of the cup both inside and out. Ensuring that you are inserting a dry cup can help achieve a better seal, thus reducing the chance of leaks.
Insert the cup with your foot resting on the toilet
Sometimes better positioning of your menstrual cup can be achieved by standing in front of the toilet and resting one foot on the toilet seat. This position makes it easier to insert the cup and is a good way to practice inserting your cup while you get used to the process.
Back and down rather than up
You may find that your cup achieves a better seal and position if you insert it in more of a downward and backward direction. Try inserting it pointing towards the tip of your tailbone, rather than pointing the cup straight upwards.
Residual blood in the vaginal opening
Sometimes you may notice apparent leaking due to residual blood just inside and around the vaginal opening. Once you menstrual cup is inserted, wipe just inside your vaginal opening with some toilet paper to clean the area of any residue.
Push it all the way in
For some women, the cup needs to be pushed further into the vaginal canal. If you can feel your cup, or if it seems to fall out easily, then you may need to push it further in. Push you cup in as far as you can and twist it to ensure a correct seal. Once you are walking around, the cup will ‘settle’ into it’s own best position.
Blocked holes in the cup rim
When rinsing or cleaning your cup, ensure that the little holes in the rim of the cup are clean and free of any residue. If these holes are blocked, it can reduce the effectiveness of the cup seal, resulting in leaking.
Not emptying enough
Menstrual cup leaking generally shouldn’t occur if the cup is emptied every 8-12 hours. However, if you have a particularly heavy flow, you may need to empty your cup more often. This may be particularly necessary during the first day or two of your period. If you are experiencing leaking, remove the cup to ensure it is not full.
During the first few days of your cycle, your cervix can sit quite low and rest on the side wall of the vagina. Usually the cervix would sit centrally meaning that all menstrual fluid flows directly down into the opening of the cup. In instances where the cervix is against the vaginal wall, fluid can bypass the cup and trickle down the side. To fix this, carefully insert your finger into your vagina. As you reach up, you will feel a finger like protrusion inside. This is your cervix. Gently nudge your cervix so that it sitting centrally. Once the cervix is positioned centrally, all blood should be collected in the cup.
In most cases, the above suggestions will solve any menstrual cup leaking that you may be experiencing. However, if you are still having trouble, please do not hesitate to contact us or the manufacturer of your cup, as we are all more than happy to assist.
Before first using your cup, we highly recommend reading through our ‘Tips for first time menstrual cup use‘