One of the best things about menstrual cups is that with the right care they can last for years! And the care that makes sure your mug stays in top condition is the same care that makes sure it is healthy and safe for you.
The best way to take care of your mug is to use the Boiled water method to disinfect your menstrual cup between cycles. (We love the hack of placing your mug in the center of a whisk while cooking so it doesn’t hit the bottom of a saucepan!)
But what if you don’t have easy access to boiling hot water? You may not feel comfortable watching water boil while your mug swirls around in the middle of your kitchen. (Roommates – even if / especially if they are a family – can be so uncomfortable).
Do not worry! There are alternative ways to make sure your mug is as clean as possible.
Sanitize vs Clean: What’s the Difference?
First, let’s get some definitions out of the way. When people talk about cooking their menstrual cup, it is a method of disinfection. “Disinfection” means removing all microorganisms (such as bacteria) to a safe level. (‘Sterilize’ means removing anything that is difficult in a home setting.)
Cleaning, on the other hand, means removing surface bacteria, odors and debris.
We make menstrual cups from medical grade silicone For a few reasons, but one of the main reasons is that being a non-porous material, it resists bacterial growth. However, many people feel better at disinfecting their cups by boiling water between cycles. We recommend this as it will help your mug last as long as possible.
How to clean your menstrual cup (without boiling)
Aside from the boiled water method, you can also disinfect your menstrual cup by:
- An autoclave. If you happen to have a kick (we don’t recommend using the autoclave at your workplace) this is a great way to sanitize your mug. It should be set to 60 minutes at 121 ° C, using a dry cycle, and otherwise used according to manufacturer’s instructions.
- A steam bag with a breast pump. These handy tools are used to disinfect parts of breast pump devices in your microwave. They are easy to use and are supposed to kill 99.9% of all common bacteria and germs. Check if this is the case
- A steam disinfectant for menstrual cups. There are several steam cleaners specifically designed for menstrual cups on the market. Be warned, not all machines are made to the same standard. So be sure to do your research. We cannot verify the quality of all of these devices, so we cannot ensure that they are as thorough as they say they are or that they will not damage your mug.
How to clean your menstrual cup
Cleaning your cup during your cycle is as simple as a thorough rinse and some non-alcoholic antibacterial soap! Some people like to clean their cup in the shower as it is discreet and easy to do after they have emptied their cup. At the other end of the comfort spectrum is the often dreaded “public washroom clean”.
We have your guide to cleaning your mug in a public washroom Here!
How to remove stains from your menstrual cup
Even with proper disinfection and cleaning, your mug is subject to some color changes with use. There may also be staining or odor problems. To remove stains or odors from your menstrual cup:
- Hydrogen peroxide (1%): You can find this at most drug stores or pharmacies. Use one part 1% hydrogen peroxide and one part water. Soak your mug and let it soak for 24 hours. Wash it thoroughly and thoroughly to remove any residual hydrogen peroxide before using or storing it.
- White wine vinegar: This may be as effective as hydrogen peroxide, but chances are you have some around the house! Use one part vinegar to two parts water. Soak your mug and let it soak for 24 hours. If you still smell a bit of vinegar after washing the mug, have a cooking session afterward.
When to throw out your cup
Cups are not indestructible. Your Intimina menstrual cup can be reused for up to 10 years (or 2 years) Ziggy Cup), but you may need to replace it sooner.
You should replace your menstrual cup if:
- There is visible physical damage such as cracks or crevices.
- The cup still feels sticky or has chalky residue even after cleaning.
- All smells will persist even after you try the tips above.
- It creates a strange color (fading is normal, for example green is not)
If you ever have any doubts, just reach out to our team through our Facebook or Instagram page or leave a comment on this article. We’re here to help!