12 Best Menstrual Cups For A Safe Zero Waste Period

Konstantina Antoniadou

July 29, 2022

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Looking for the best menstrual cups for beginners and pros? With the wide variety of period cups out there, we decided to get our research caps on and sort through the best ones. We cherry-picked the 12 top menstrual cups for low cervix and high cervix, light flow to heavy flow, as well as some amazing options for swimming below!

p.s. If cups aren’t really your thing, but you are interested in safe, zero-waste alternatives to pads and tampons, take a look at the 13 Best Period Underwear For A Sustainable & Affordable Period.

This post is about the best menstrual cups for safe & zero-waste periods

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Granted, if you are a first-time user, the mere thought of inserting and removing menstrual cups might give you the chills. However, there is a pretty good reason why 300-350 million people today decided to swap their chemical-packed, highly-polluting pads and tampons with the best menstrual cups for beginners and bleeding veterans. 

Unlike your trusted period panties and menstrual products, cups are inserted into your vaginal canal to collect blood from your cervix instead of absorbing it. It’s just like inserting your favorite eco-friendly sex toy or kegel ball – only it can stay in for up to 12 hours and allow you to stroll the city streets, go swimming just sleep peacefully as soon as Aunt Flo comes for her monthly visit.  

Plus, the safest menstrual cup options vary in size depending on your flow and overall body anatomy. 

 

Saalt, for example, has the best menstrual cup for low cervix and light to normal flow; HelloPeriod offers some of the best menstrual cups for high cervix and heavy flow while Lena Cup is the most affordable menstrual cup for swimming. No worries, there are detailed size and user guides for every option.

 

Take a look at the 12 best menstrual cups for beginners and long-time users to find the one that suits your specific needs the most.

Are menstrual cups better than tampons?

Menstrual cups are way better than tampons for many reasons. First and foremost, tampons can easily encourage bacteria to grow as well as cause tint abrasions to our vaginal walls during the removal process if the blood flow is light.

Then, there is the risk of TSS which affects 1 in 100,000 menstruating women. It’s a rare but life-threatening condition caused by bacteria getting into the body and releasing harmful toxins.

From an ecological standpoint, menstrual cups are the perfect way to avoid plastic waste. 

 

In the United States alone, approximately 12 billion pads and 7 billion tampons are discarded each year which can take 500 to 800 years to decompose. The best menstrual cups, on the other hand, are almost always made from medical-grade silicone which is chemical-free, body safe, and recyclable. In fact, one cup produces an estimated 0.4% of the plastic waste that single-use pads generate. Some period cups can last for up to 10 years and this fact alone makes this zero-waste alternative extremely sustainable.

How do I clean my menstrual cup?

The cleaning process is pretty easy. All you have to do is gently remove the cup and empty the blood. Then, use cold water and mild, alcohol and fragrance-free soap to rinse the cup. After every cycle, go ahead and dip your cup in boiling water for 20 minutes to remove any residue. Brands like Me Luna and Voxapod offer cup sterilizers and soaps to make the entire process much easier.

What is the safest material for menstrual cups?

Medical-grade silicone is the safest material for menstrual cups that can last for up to 10 years of monthly use. Premium silicone is also a fantastic recyclable and hypoallergenic option for everyone with sensitivity to latex. Another safe material for menstrual cups is Thermoplastic elastomer (TPE) which can be recycled. So if you are looking for the Best Menstrual Cups for beginners, silicone and TPE are the most ideal options.

This post is about the safest menstrual cups.

Best Menstrual Cups For Beginners & Pros: Safe, Zero-Waste & Affordable

Voxapod has some of the best menstrual cups for heavy flow that are non-toxic, utterly soft, and extremely safe. The patented cup forms to your unique body shape for extra comfort throughout the night and during swimming for up to 12 hours. On top of that, it features a flexible, trimmable stem and a pinch grip for easy insertion and removal even when things get extra slippery. Also, you can opt for the on-the-go Menstrual Cup Sterilizer made from microwave-safe – heat-resistant silicone to easily sterilize your reusable period products anywhere – how cool is that?

Sizes: Small (24 ml) & Medium (37 ml)

Price: $29

Cup Material: Medical-grade silicone

Location & Shipping: USA

Shop Voxapod Here

Saalt’s zero-waste products are not only the best menstrual cups for beginners but also one of the safest menstrual cup options available today. It holds 3x more than a regular tampon for up to 12 hours, and “lasts as long as your passport.” It’s suitable for people who find firmer cups painful or feel a bit of push on their bladder. The super soft bulb shape double seal with a soft flex stem can easily be inserted and removed and it’s available in 3 sizes. Saalt Regular (the Best menstrual cup for heavy flow for high cervixes), Saalt Small (perfect for light to normal flow for low cervixes), and Saalt Teen (for people under 18 or those with petite physics).

Sizes: 46mm (Regular), 41mm (Small)

Price: $29

Cup Material: Odor-free medical – grade silicone

Location & Shipping: USA

Shop Saalt Here

Mooncup is the original, multi-award-winning, sustainable menstrual cup with three times more hold than a regular tampon and over 2 million #RealMooncupUsers around the world. Their zero-waste cups are a fantastic hypoallergenic alternative to rubber which is linked to latex allergies. Currently, there are two Mooncup sizes available – both Vegan Society certified and free from plastics, dyes, and toxins. Size A is recommended for people over 30 and all who have given birth whereas Size B was designed for everyone under 30 years who hasn’t given birth. Plus, for every order, the brand donates £1 to the eco non-profit City to Sea.

Sizes: 46mm & 50mm

Price: £20.95

Cup Material: silicone

Location & Shipping: UK & EU

Shop Moon Cup Here

Why Flex zero-waste menstrual products are touted as best menstrual cups for beginners? They come with a tampon-like pull tab that feels familiar to first-time users. Additionally, these safe period cups allow you to adjust the fit! There are many ways to insert Flex Cup (there is a detailed guide for that) and allow it to do its magic for up to 12-hour. If you are a newbie, go for Size 01, but if you are already a sustainable period cup veteran and have given birth vaginally 2+ times, Size 02 is for you. Some additional products to keep in mind are the Flex Reusable Discs.

Sizes: Size 01 (43 mm) & Size 02 for (46 mm)

Price: $34.99

Cup Material: 100% medical-grade silicone.

Location & Shipping: USA

Shop Flex Here

Sustainable, award-winning, and comfortable, there is no question why HelloPeriod’s best menstrual cup for low cervix and high cervix is so beloved in the zero-waste community. Unlike their regular Black Hello Cup, the Hello Low Cervix Cup does not have a toggle at the base which is perfect for people with shorter vaginal canals. The Hello High Cervix Cup, on the other hand, has an elongated body and toggle to make it easier to reach for people with a high-sitting cervix.

Sizes: XS (for teens and petite figures), S/M (for under 35), L (for over 35)

Price: $49.95

Cup Material: Silicone-free medical grade thermoplastic elastomer (TPE) 

Location & Shipping: New Zealand, worldwide shipping

Shop Hello Here

Touted as the best menstrual cups for beginners by heavy and low bleeders alike, the Cora Cup comes with an easy to fold and insert design and textured base for quick and hassle-free removal. It’s super soft and can actually be reused for up to 10 years. Currently, there are two sizes available tailored to your menstrual flow. Size 1, the smallest, is perfect for first-timers who have not given birth with a light to medium flow. Size 2 was designed for medium to heavy flows and it’s ideal for everyone who has given birth. Additionally, 75% of the brand’s donations will be dedicated to BIPOC communities by 2022 and by the end of 2022, 22,000,000 will be given away to those in need.

Sizes: Size 1 (22 mL) & Size 2 (28 ml)

Price: $39

Cup Material: Medical-grade silicone

Location & Shipping: USA

Shop Cora Cup Here

Ruby offers leak-proof, toxic-free menstrual cups with a grip ring at the base of the cup for easier removal. The brand’s best menstrual cups hold 3 times the capacity of a super tampon, and depending on your flow lever, you can wear it for up to 8 hours. To take their eco-consious pledge a bit further, the brand offers organic cotton storage bags to keep your S or Medium cups clean and safe. Small is recommended if you have a light to medium flow, and low to average height cervix whereas Medium is for medium to heavy flow and an average to high cervix. What’s even more impressive? Through their ‘Buy One, Give One’ program, every order equals one donation to someone without access to menstrual care products.

Sizes: S (24ml) & Medium (34ml)

Price: $ 39.95

Cup Material: Soft, medical-grade silicone

Location & Shipping: EU, Worldwide Shipping

Shop Ruby Here

No matter your vaginal walls, the Lena Cup stays securely and firmly in place for up to 12 hours. The brand believes that the safest menstrual cup options should not be based on age or whether or not a person has given birth. That’s why Lena Small is ideal for users with a normal flow and Lena Large is suited for people with a heavy flow. Also, you can opt for the regular Lena Cup of the “Sensitive” alternative which is one of the smallest menstrual cups on the market for teens or everyone with a sensitive bladder.   

Sizes: 41 mm & 46 mm 

Price: $25

Cup Material: Premium medical-grade silicone

Location & Shipping: USA

Shop Lena Here

Do you want to get down and dirty without actually making a mess? Intimina’s Ziggy period disk helps you enjoy period sex with up to 8 hours of leak-proof protection. That’s not all! The millennial pink Lily Cup Compact is the world’s first collapsible menstrual cup and the best menstrual cup for swimming. Size A is perfect for petite figures and teens with a light flow while Size B is a medium flow staple for people who have who gave birth. The zero-waste period brand also has two more period cups available and 2 additional products for Kegel exercises. Pro tip: don’t forget to take a look at the splurge-worthy bundles, *wink.

Sizes: Size A ( 28 ml) & size B  32 ml) 

Price: € 24,76

Cup Material: 100% medical grade silicone

Location & Shipping: Sweden, ships to EU

Shop Intimina Here

For many first-time and veteran zero-waste period product users, Me Luna is the brand with the best menstrual cups with options just right for you! Known as the most customizable menstrual cup on the market, the brand offers 4 different sizes, and the handle is available in three styles. You can choose to have a small ball (most comfy), a ring ( perfect for worried users), or a stem (ideal for beginners). Plus, every order comes with a free cleaning brush for the cup’s air holes which is pretty convenient.

Sizes: S (23ml), M (28ml), L (34ml) & XL (42ml)

Price: $26.95

Cup Material: Thermoplastic elastomer (TPE) 

Location & Shipping: USA

Shop Me Luna Here

When you think of the best menstrual cups for beginners, the Diva Cup Series is probably the first option that comes to mind – because it is by far the most popular. It is a bit more firm than most other cups on the market which allows it to sit still for up to 12 hours. There are 3 models ready for grabs. Model 0 is specifically made for teens or very for very light flow, Model 1 is for ages 19-30 and medium flow, and Model 2 is ideal for 30+ and heavy flow. The brand also offers menstrual cup cleaners (aka DivaWash) in regular and travel sizes.

Sizes: 0 (20ml), 1 (30 ml), 2(32 ml)

Price: $32.99

Cup Material: 100% medical grade silicone

Location & Shipping: USA

Shop Diva Cup Here

Free from harmful chemicals and all-things toxic, Lunette’s Menstrual Cup is made from FDA-approved medical-grade silicone with a textured rim that allows it to sit comfortably in all the right places and get removed with ease. Known as one of the Best Menstrual Cups for beginners, this is a sustainable alternative to tampons and pads. It comes in two different sizes. Model 1 is ideal for light bleeding and low-sitting cervixes and Model 2 was designed for heavy flows and high cervixes. Also, there are 6 cute colors to choose from! On top of that, the brand uses zero-waste packaging and renewable energy all while encouraging remote work and sustainable activities in every possible way.

Sizes: 41mm & 46mm

Price: 31.90 €

Cup Material: FDA-approved medical-grade silicone

Location & Shipping: Europe, Worldwide shipping available

Shop Lunette Here

This post was all about the best menstrual cups for safe, wero-waste periods

The best menstrual cups for beginners and pros above will not only lower your period’s overall carbon footprint but also keep you comfy and confident during that time of the month. Luckily the safest menstrual cup options above are ridiculously easy to use, super soft, leak-proof, and oh-so-sustainable

If you liked this post, you’ll definitely want to check out these other period posts from SKL:

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