I have found that the best way for me to insert my Diva Cup is the following:
1) rinse Diva Cup with water (recommended if you need lubrication)
2) sit on the toilet and start singing this song in my head
3) spread legs wide (wild child!)
4) take several deep breaths and relax everything
5) relax even more
6) fold the Diva Cup in half, and then in half again (holding with thumb, pointer, and middle fingers)
7) position so the folded part faces toward my head, and the rounded portion under the fold fits in against the back of my vagina
9) gently start pushing the DC into your vaginal opening
10) once it’s in (you don’t have to insert it as deeply as a tampon) you should feel it “pop open” – this creates the seal to prevent leaks!
11) grab the bottom end of the DC and give it a little twist – it should twist very freely – and this will confirm you have placed it properly!
You should be able to stand up and walk around and NOT FEEL THE DIVA CUP AT ALL! If you feel it and it’s really uncomfortable, you might have to reinsert, because that probably means it’s not far enough in. If you feel the stem poking out, feel free to trim it a little if reinsertion doesn’t help!
To take it out again:
1) Sit down on the toilet and spread ‘em!
2) See if you can feel the stem of the Diva Cup at all
3) If not (I usually can’t) you should use your muscles and bear down, kind of in a similar manner to pooping – this helps move the DC down the vaginal canal
4) Once you feel the stem, pull it down a little bit until you can grasp the actual bottom of the cup
5) Pinch the bottom of the cup. This will break the seal and allow you to comfortably fold the DC and slide it out
6) Empty, rinse, and reinsert!
A few notes
It may take a couple tries to get the Diva Cup properly inserted. That’s okay!
I know this is totally weird, but for some reason, seeing the menstrual blood in its “natural state” before being exposed to air and cotton fibers makes me feel really healthy and proud. And kind of mystical. We’re women! This is (one of) our THING(s)!
If I don’t insert it properly the first time (for me, that usually means the seal didn’t form and it stayed folded), I just pull the DC out a little bit – NOT all the way – and the seal will form as it moves lower in the vaginal canal, 99% of the time. Then, you just have to gently push the DC back up into position, and the seal will hold!
If you want, you can even ask your doctor about menstrual cups. I told mine when I was having trouble getting it into position, and she brought one out with some plastic models of the vaginal canal, and gave me some pointers on how to position it and insert it for a better outcome!
I know this seems like a LOT of things to do just to wrangle your period, but once you get used to it, insertion and removal really become second nature.
What about swimming?
Yup, you can swim with the Diva Cup as long as it’s properly inserted!
What about emptying the Diva Cup in a public restroom?
So, this is really the only tricky part about the DC. If I’m in a public restroom and have to remove and reinsert my Diva Cup, I will just pull it out, empty it, wipe it down with a damp tissue (I almost always have my water bottle with me), reinsert, and then clean more thoroughly when I can get to a more private bathroom. Honestly, this has almost never been an issue for me though. If I know I’m going to be at the bar, I’ll just remove and reinsert the DC before I go – remember, it can be in place for up to 12 hours!
If you have more specific questions, let me know in the comments! I’m obviously totally happy talking about the ins and outs of my vagina. Or if you’d prefer, check out the Q&A on the Diva Cup website!
*Disclaimer* I am not sponsored or paid by Diva Cup or any other menstrual cup company. All content reflects my own views and experiences.