Menstrual cup safety, hygiene and cleaning
Our customers’ safety is our number one priority. That’s why we have taken several steps to make sure we provide our customers with a high quality and safe product.
The OrganiCup is made of 100% flexible medical-grade silicone. Medical-grade silicone contains silicon, oxygen, carbon and hydrogen atoms. It doesn’t contain any known unnecessary or hazardous chemicals. Medical-grade silicone is tested for biocompatibility and completely safe to use inside the body.
While the menstrual cup is not organic in the agricultural sense, OrganiCup is developed based on sustainable principles by not containing any hazardous chemicals, toxins or artificial colourings.
OrganiCup is Allergy Certified, certified vegan and complies to medical device standards. The storage bag is made from unbleached organic cotton, the packaging is made from recyclable carton, and user instructions have been printed directly on the packaging to prevent additional waste. The raw material derives from sand (quartz), the second most abundant mineral in the Earth’s crust.
The medical-grade silicone used for the OrganiCup is manufactured in the US and the OrganiCup is registered with the FDA as a medical device (suitable for the intended use, adequately packaged and properly labelled, have establishment registration and device listing forms on file with the FDA).
Is it made of plastic? There is no clear definition of plastics and it’s defined very widely. The definition covers 3 categories:
- Thermoplastic (Thermoplast) which is used for bags, bottles and packaging.
- Thermoset (Duroplast) which covers all materials that cannot be melted.
- Elastomer (Elastomer), which covers rubbers and silicones. This is the category OrganiCup’s material fall under.
If you want to dive into the chemistry, the base for plastic is carbon whereas the base material for silicone is silicon. Plastic is an example of a man made material. It is made when you combine carbon with oxygen or sulfur (natural materials) and put those materials through chemical processes and heat. This chemical process is what makes plastic man made.
The OrganiCup is AllergyCertified. When you choose products that carry the AllergyCertified label, you can rest assured that their team of toxicologists have gone through every single ingredient in the product, made a risk assessment and concluded that the product lives up to their strict quality requirements and that there is a minimal risk of developing allergies or irritations due to usage.
All OrganiCup products carry the AllergyCertified logo.
The OrganiCup is registered with The Vegan Society. This means that the organisation’s team has checked our products against their criteria and made sure they meet their standards of being cruelty-free and using no animal by-products.
All OrganiCup products are registered with The Vegan Society.
Infections and hygiene
Using a menstrual cup is very hygienic, as no external factors or free oxygen reach the accumulated flow while it is inserted no bacteria is created.
In fact, you’re more likely to get an infection from bacteria on your hands that was transferred via the menstrual cup than you are to get an infection from the menstrual cup itself. That’s also why it’s very important to make sure to wash your hands with soap before you insert or remove the cup.
We have consulted gynaecologists on this matter and because bacteria formation grows exponentially, you should empty your menstrual every 8-12 hours. That’s why it is important to keep track of when you inserted it and to follow hygiene recommendations.
In 2019, a report by the Lancet Public Health also concluded that menstrual cups are a safe option. Read the report here.
TSS is a complication of bacterial infections, which has been associated with tampon use, but is not solely linked to tampons. In fact, 50% of cases are non-menstrual and 25% are found in men. To contract TSS, a person needs to be a carrier of a specific strain of staph bacteria (staphylococcus aureus) in their body. If the person has that, the staph can multiply in, for instance, a tampon’s absorbent fibers but also in an unhealed wound, producing a harmful toxin.
Unlike pads and tampons that absorb menstrual flow, a menstrual cup collects and catch it. This means that no oxygen reaches the collected flow and it remains bacteria free. It also means that no unnecessary vaginal fluids will be absorbed. This eliminates irritation and dryness while ensuring that the natural pH balance of the vagina is kept intact.
Nevertheless, there is still a minimal risk of TSS (if you have the specific strain of staph bacteria in your vaginal flora), so we always recommend making sure that you empty it after 8-12 hours, sanitise your OrganiCup between periods and wash your hands before handling the cup.
The OrganiCup can last for years with proper cleaning and care.
If you follow our instructions on how to use and clean your OrganiCup it’s a very hygienic and safe method of managing your period.
You should always make sure to wash your hands with soap and water when handling your menstrual cup.
Before first use
Before using your OrganiCup for the very first time, you have to boil your menstrual cup in water for 3-5 minutes. Please make sure to keep an eye on the pot so the water doesn’t vaporise, or the cup falls to the bottom and burns.
Can I sanitise my menstrual cup in a microwave
or pour boiling water over it?
We recommend that you boil it in a pot because it’s important to make sure the water reaches 100 degrees Celsius and kills any bacteria.
This is more difficult to control if you’re using a microwave and also when you simply pour boiling water over the cup, since the water’s temperature drops quickly.
During your period
While on your period, we recommend that you empty the cup in the toilet or sink and simply rinse it with clean water and reinsert it.
It’s not necessary to use soap to clean your cup, but if you prefer using soap, it’s important to use a perfume free and pH-balanced soap such as the OrganiWash.
After your period
Once your period has finished, you have to boil your OrganiCup in water for 3-5 minutes. Again, please make sure to keep an eye on it so it doesn’t accidentally burn.
If you are not able to boil your OrganiCup, you can sanitise it using an OrganiWipe.
After your OrganiCup has dried, store it in the organic cotton bag.
If needed, you can wash the cotton bag in the washer on 30 degrees Celsius.
If you have lost the bag, you can use any other cotton bag.
Tips and tricks
Using OrganiCup with an IUD
We have consulted a gynecologist on the matter and as the OrganiCup is placed low at the base of the vaginal canal, it shouldn’t interfere with an IUD. However, you should always make sure to release the suction seal when you’re removing the cup.
We have written a blog post about using the cup with an IUD.
As with any other gynecological concern, we’d always recommend you talk with your gynecologist before you start using a cup with an IUD.
Discolouration of your OrganiCup is due to the residual build-up and it is very normal. However, it is possible to make it look “as new” again with the following steps:
• Buy some hydrogen peroxide 2% either online or in your local pharmacy/drugstore
• In a bowl, mix 1/2 water and 1/2 hydrogen peroxide.
Submerge the cup and leave it overnight in the mixture.
• This should make your cup appear almost as new. Just remember to clean it thoroughly before use!
Medical-grade silicone (the OrganiCup’s material) is odorless. However, it is possible that your cup develops an odor with use.
The most common reason for a menstrual cup to develop a smell is that you leave it in for longer than the advised 8-12 hours.
Here are a few ways to eliminate the cup’s smell:
• Soaking it in a hydrogen peroxide mix. Mix 1/2 hydrogen peroxide 2% and 1/2 water in a bowl. Submerge the cup and leave it overnight in the mixture. Just remember to boil the cup for 3-5 minutes before you use it again!
• Using fresh lemon juice. You can either wipe the inside and outside of your cup with it or soaking your cup in the juice for around an hour. Once finished, boil your cup for a few minutes in water to ensure all residue is removed.
• Rinsing the cup with cold water. After removing and emptying your menstrual cup, make sure to rinse it with cold water first. You can use lukewarm after if preferred. Using warm water first may cause the smell.