Can you have sex with a menstrual cup?

A menstrual cup can be a great thing, and it’s environmentally friendly, saves money, and can be less of a hassle depending on the person who uses it. The answer to this question depends on what kind of menstrual cups you wear and what kind of sex you want to have. It is essential to be aware, though, that a menstrual cup is not a contraceptive device and will not protect you from Sexually Transmitted Diseases (STDs) or Sexually Transmitted Infections (STIs).

How do you define sex? 

It all depends on how you define sex - whether it’s the act of intimacy, erotic touching, or penetration – so, we’ll go over what types of sex is safe for what types of menstrual cups. When we are talking about sex, there are two defining menstrual cups that allow for different types of sex. If you’re using one of our cups, these are reusable or non-disposable. They are very sturdy, built to last for years and are designed to keep you leak-proof throughout your cycle. With reusable cups, you can masturbate, have anal sex and oral sex all with the safe knowledge that your cup will be keeping you and/or your partner leak free. 

The other type of menstrual cup is a disposable menstrual cup, and these are more commonly known as menstrual discs. These are flexible discs made of silicone that are one-time use and modeled after the contraceptive method known as the diaphragm. They sit higher in the vaginal canal than reusable cups and can, therefore, be more comfortable. You can wear them for all types of sex including vaginal penetrative sex. Although the cup should hold your flow there is a risk that it might leak or become dislodged. Because of the vaginal canal lengthening during arousal, it’s best to wait two hours or more after intercourse before removing your menstrual disc. 

Why use a menstrual cup during sex?

There are many benefits to using a cup during sex: you might not want to do additional laundry or worry that staining the sheets might take you out of the experience, or perhaps you might not like the sight of blood. Also, some have even reported that it gives better orgasms! It’s comfortable and will feel the same as when you are using it as normal throughout the day, although you may find certain positions, depths, and speeds work better, as in the case of anal sex.

Things to look out for 

It is important to bear in mind that sometimes orgasms, shifting positions, or just the tensing of your vaginal canal, can cause the cup to shift, leak, or dislodge. So, prepare yourself with a towel just in case (for both disposable and non-disposable menstrual cups), and if you feel any discomfort, you can either re-insert the cup, or remove it, and carry on!

What happens if I have penetrative vaginal sex with my reusable menstrual cup in? 

If you don’t take out your menstrual cup during penetration, it can cause discomfort for both parties. Non-disposable menstrual cups are thicker, more durable, and firmer than disposable menstrual cups. This can cause the penis, strap on, or sex toy, to push the cup towards the cervix and get stuck, cause a blockage, or cause pain. The silicone stem could scratch or tear the skin of the penis - even if you could get the penis, strap on, or sex toy far enough in the vaginal canal - due to the low position of the cup. 

Can you have sex on your period? 

Absolutely. You can have sex anytime you want - as long as it is done safely and with consent. Periods have long been stigmatized and considered a taboo subject, so branching out into period sex can be even more divisive. But there is absolutely no need to let your period hinder your sex life; with a little prep, you can have mind-blowing sex throughout your whole cycle!

Why you should have sex on your period

There are quite a few reasons why having sex while on your period can be a good thing. One reason is that you can get relief from period cramps, as orgasms release a multitude of feel-good endorphins that are natural pain relievers and body relaxers. In addition, the contraction of your uterus from an orgasm can also bring relief from period cramps. Having sex may also make your period shorter from the muscle contractions pushing out the uterine lining faster. Many say they feel more sensitive and responsive to erotic touch whilst menstruating, which can lead to better and faster orgasms. The last reason is that blood is a natural and free lubricant, making sex easy and painless! Also, there are a host of positions you can try to help alleviate any pain – check them out here

Can I get pregnant on my period? 

Yes, you can, and using protection is always a good idea, and even though the odds of conceiving are lower during your period, it is still possible to get pregnant while you are on your menstruating. 

Why do I get period cramps after sex?

It can be confusing to read that an orgasm can alleviate period cramps, but that sex can also cause them. So, what can you do when you have cramps after sex, and why does this sometimes happen? Period cramps after sex can be caused by several things, for example if you recently got an Intrauterine Device (IUD) fitted (some have reported cramping for a few months after the initial insertion of an IUD). Pregnancy can also cause cramping after sex, which encourages contractions in the uterus. Cramps can also be caused by underlying medical issues like endometriosis, fibroids, or even STIs. So, if you’re continually having cramping after sex, it’s important you talk to your doctor so you can figure out the cause of your symptoms.

5 tips for period sex 

  1. Don’t be afraid to be open and honest with your partner about period sex. Let them know how you personally feel about sex during your period and be sure to talk about any discomfort either one of you may have with the idea. Remember you don’t have to have sex during your period, but stigma should not stop you!
  2. Remove your reusable cup before vaginal penetration.
  3. Spread a towel on the bed to catch any possible leaks.
  4. Keep wipes or tissue by the bed to help with the cleanup.
  5. Remember to wear a condom to protect against STIs and pregnancy.

Stop the stigma!

Period sex is completely normal and healthy. The stigma it carries about it being ‘dirty’, ‘gross’, or ‘impure’, compared to other types of sex, is the farthest from the truth that you can get. There is no reason to feel ashamed about having period sex when regular sex involves all sorts of other bodily fluids. When you willingly participate with arousal fluids - such as semen, sweat, saliva, urine, and even fecal matter - there is absolutely no reason to avoid intercourse when it comes to blood, unless that is your personal preference.