Finding the right menstrual cup can take some trial and error. The good news is that you can avoid that wasted time and money by narrowing down your choices based on a few personal factors with the help of some unique menstrual cup comparison tools we’ve created for you!
Menstrual cup manufacturers tell you to buy a smaller size cup if you’re under 30 and have never given birth vaginally. This is based on the belief that if a person is under the age of 30, they may not have had any pregnancies or children, and/or have stronger pelvic floor muscles (PFM).
If you’re older than 30 or have delivered a baby via the vaginal canal (i.e. not through a cesarean section), then they say to get the larger size. This is because of the assumption that those who are over 30 are more likely to have a weakened PFM and/or have had pregnancies or children.
However, an often overlooked factor that can make a big difference in the comfort and effectiveness of a menstrual cup is the position of your cervix – that is, how high or low it is in your body. This varies from person to person and moves throughout your cycle.
What’s a Cervix?
The cervix is the lowest part of the uterus. It’s sometimes referred to as the neck of the uterus, similar to the neck of a bottle. It is tubular in shape and is the passage between the vaginal canal to the uterine cavity.
While the uterus cannot be seen, the cervix can be seen and felt from inside the vagina.
During your period, the endometrium (mucous lining) is shed from the uterine walls and menstrual blood flows out of the cervix.
How to Find Out if Your Cervix is High or Low?
The cervix moves to different positions during your cycle, so it’s best to check the approximate measurement sometime right before your period starts to a couple of days into your period. At this time, the cervix normally drops down to its lowest point.
Check its position again at the middle to the end of your period because this is when the cervix will start to move back up, getting back into place for ovulation. During ovulation, the cervix is normally at its highest position. Sometimes this is so high that it’s hard to reach or can’t be felt.
Some people notice a significant difference between the two measurements and others won’t see much of a change at all. If your cervix moves drastically, you may want to purchase a two-pack of menstrual cups that offer both a small and a large size. This will allow you to use whichever cup is more comfortable and/or easier to reach for you when your cervix is at its different heights.
Make sure to wash your hands with soap and water. Insert your longest finger into your vagina.
Different Cervical Heights:
Low or very low cervix – If your finger only goes in an inch or so before it comes into contact with the cervix, yours is low.
Average or medium cervix – If your cervix is easy to reach but not especially low, your cervix is placed at an average level.
High cervix – If your finger goes in all the way before it touches the cervix or it doesn’t touch it at all, you have a high cervix
As mentioned, the cervix may be hard to reach or completely out of reach depending on where you are in your cycle. If you believe that you have a very high cervix from the start of your period to the end of your period, you may want to consider a long cup. However, if your cervix drops, even a small amount, some of these longer cups may not be comfortable throughout your period.
How Do You Know if You Have Reached Your Cervix?
Depending on where in your cycle you are when you check, the cervix can feel softer like an earlobe or like lips. You may even be able to feel the dimple from the slight opening that allows semen to enter into the uterus. Other times, the cervix may feel more like the tip of a nose. The cervical opening will be closed and you might not be able to feel a dimple at all.
Because we suggest measuring the height of your cervix sometime right before your period to a couple of days into your period, the cervix will feel more similar to the latter.
Which Menstrual Cup Goes with Which Type of Cervix?
If your cervix is located at average height (middle knuckle), any standard large-sized menstrual cup may be comfortable for you. However, if your cervix is on the lower or higher side, it pays to check the length measurements to find a cup that will be more comfortable or easier to reach for you.
The cup’s length measurement is particularly important for finding the right cup for your cervical height. We provide a very handy comparison tool that sorts the many menstrual cup brands from large to small. This allows you to select your preferred length, which is heaven for the detail-oriented shoppers among you!
1. Very Low Cervix Menstrual Cups
If you have a very low cervix, we suggest trying a menstrual cup that’s shorter in length because if the cup is too long, it may not fit comfortably during use.
2. Medium to Low Cervix Menstrual Cups
If you have a medium to low cervix, you can use the small size of almost any brand. You can also look into cups that were designed to be shorter than the “average” small-sized cup, often indicated by labels such as teen, mini, shorty, or low cervix.
A bell-shaped cup might be more comfortable for you because the base of the cup is rounded off. This makes it a bit shorter and it doesn’t have the pointed base like V-shaped cups do, which may protrude out of the vaginal opening.
Furthermore, a bell-shaped cup with a flared rim tends to ride up and sit higher in the vaginal fornix. Again, this keeps the base of the cup away from the vaginal opening.
3. Medium to High Cervix Menstrual Cups
If you have a medium to high cervix, using a cup with more length might be easier for you to reach when the time comes to remove and empty it. It may be the larger size of a specific brand or a cup that is V-shaped. A V-shaped cup normally has more length, even in the smaller size. This will allow you to reach your cup with less difficulties.
4. Very High Cervix Menstrual Cups
If you have a high cervix, we suggest looking into menstrual cups that are longer in length. If the cup is too short, it’s not going to be as easy for you to remove and empty it.
Features to Consider
Although the cup’s length measurement is particularly important, here are some other features worth taking into consideration.
- Stem length – Because most of the cup stems can be trimmed, it is best to check the cup’s total length with and without the stem to find the best fit.
- Cup diameter – Although the vagina can expand up to 200 times is normal size, some people may find a narrower cup more comfortable to wear. These may include (but are not limited to) teens, new users, and those with no experience inserting items such as tampons.
- Cup Softness/Firmness – It may help to compare the softness/firmness of each cup model. This will give you a simple at-a-glance view of the essential features of every cup.
- Check out our article on how to choose a menstrual cup to find out more.
No one menstrual cup is going to work for every person! You can, however, increase your chances of finding the perfect cup if you take the time to check your cervical height. We wish you luck and hope this website is a valuable tool in your search!