Maybe you’ve stayed faithful to your trusty tampons or pads ever since Aunt Flow’s first visit. Still, it’d be hard not to notice the hype around reusable feminine hygiene products—menstrual cups, period underwear, reusable tampons—that’s all over the Internet (and even the subway).
But are they up to par with your tampon? Before you go with the flow for another month, get the facts on these other options.
1. Menstrual Cups
Though menstrual cups are quietly gaining popularity, they’re hardly a new idea. The first commercially viable cup was patented in 1937—but wasn’t an overnight hit.
“Because you have to be so ‘vagina-friendly’ and a little more bold to use it, I don’t think it’s really caught on,” says Sherry Ross, M.D., an OB/GYN at Providence Saint John’s Health Center. In other words, you have to be comfortable inserting your fingers into your vagina more so than you do with a tampon. (If you’re familiar with using a diaphragm for contraception, inserting a menstrual cup is very similar.)
Ross admits cups can be a little messier and more chall…