Menstrual Discs vs Period Cups
- A menstrual disc sits in the vaginal fornix [aka the widest part of your vagina and the base of your cervix] while a menstrual cup is placed in the vaginal canal.
- Both discs and cups collect fluids rather than absorbing them.
- Cups and discs have different insertion and removal steps.
- A disc uses gravity to collect fluids and stay in place while period cups require suction to stay in place.
The Full Read:
Calling a menstrual disc and a menstrual cup the same product would be like equating eyeglasses to contact lenses because both correct your vision. Both cups and discs are menstrual products that collect menstrual fluid, but their designs and ways of working in the body are quite different.
Read on to learn the key differences between a menstrual disc and a menstrual cup in how they are used, materials, positioning, and what activities you can do with each period product.
Placed In Different Regions Of The Vagina
A menstrual disc sits in the vaginal fornix, which is at the base of your cervix. This area is the widest part of your vaginal canal, which is why the disc looks wider than a cup. Menstrual cups, on the other hand, sit lower in a more narrow part of the vagina, the vaginal canal.
How It Works: Different Use Of Physics
A menstrual disc stays in place because your vaginal muscle walls will naturally hold it there simply by anatomy. The disc is “propped” up behind your pubic bone, which keeps it in place against the pull of gravity.
In contrast, a period cup uses suction to stay in place. Therefore, when you want to remove it, you have to break the suction seal by pinching the cup, or in the case of Flex menstrual cups, pulling down on the patented pull tab which breaks the seal for you.
Watch the difference in placement in these two videos:
Different Insertion Methods
In order to insert a menstrual disc, you pinch it in half, push it all of the way to the back of the vagina, and then lift the top of the rim up and back behind your pubic bone.
A menstrual cup must be folded down using one of the many folding methods before inserting. Once in, to prevent leakage, either rotate the cup 360 degrees or run your finger around the rim to make sure that the cup has completely unfolded.
Disposable Vs. Reusable
Menstrual discs are disposable, so you don’t wash or boil them after use- you just dispose of them. In contrast, a period cup is reusable, and must be washed and rinsed each time you empty and reinsert it. We suggest that you clean Flex Cups using fragrance- and oil-free soaps that won’t damage the silicone. We also recommend that you boil your menstrual cup every month at the end of your menstrual cycle to disinfect it.
Sex On Your Period
A menstrual disc doesn’t block the vaginal canal, so it is possible to have mess-free sex while continuing to wear it. A menstrual cup sits in the vaginal canal and must be removed before having penetrative sex
Flex Disc is made from a medical-grade polymer used in many types of medical devices such as surgical tools. Menstrual cups, including Flex Cup, are usually made from medical-grade silicone, although some brands use different materials, such as rubber or latex.
For more information about how to use a menstrual disc, check out our how-to on the Flex website here. If you’re looking for more information about using a Flex Cup, we have lots of helpful information here.
If you would rather reach out to a human, our Flexperts are available to chat by clicking the chat bubble in the bottom right of our website.