8 Reasons Your Menstrual Cup is Leaking + How to Fix It

 
 
red-popsicle

Ugh. No one wants to deal with period leaks, or emergency bathroom runs! The truth is, menstrual cup leaks can happen to anyone, but in most cases, it isn’t the cup’s fault and it can be easily fixed. 

Here’s 8 reasons why your menstrual cup might be leaking, and what you can do about it.

1. Your menstrual cup didn’t open properly.

VOXAPOD is uniquely designed to give you a fool-proof seal when inserted, but we know when you’re first starting out with a menstrual cup, it can take a while to get the hang of things. 

In order for your VOXAPOD cup to form a leak-proof seal, it should be positioned completely inside the vaginal cavity below your cervix in order to ‘catch’ your flow. The positioning varies slightly with each user depending on how high or low their cervix is and how curved or straight their vaginal canal is. Once the cup is inserted, it is imperative for it to fully expand and open to form a seal and prevent leaks. 

Tips: 

  1. You can run you finger around the outside rim of the cup once inserted to ensure it has opened all the way. 

  2. Once the VOXAPOD is inserted, twist the base of the cup to make a full turn to aid the cup in fully expanding if needed.

  3. Pull gently at the stem after inserted. If the cup does not move, you likely formed a solid suction seal. If the cup moves, you may need to remove the cup and reinsert or try one of the tips above.

  4. Try different folds when inserting. If you’ve used a different cup before VOXAPOD, you may find using a different fold does the trick for a leak-proof seal. Some users have better luck with the Punch Down Fold, when they may have previously used a C-Fold, etc.

Artwork by Brittany Lang | VOXAPOD™

Artwork by Brittany Lang | VOXAPOD™

After practicing for 2-3 cycles, most women will figure out where their ‘sweet spot’ is for positioning their cup. When VOXAPOD is inserted correctly, you should have a leak-free experience and have little to no sensation of the cup. This can take practice for some users, so be patient with yourself and remember to relax your vaginal muscles when inserting and removing. 

Tip: While first learning to use VOXAPOD menstrual cup, it can be helpful to wear a liner, pad or period panties as a backup and for peace of mind until you get the hang of things.

2. You might have the wrong size cup. 

If your cup is too small, it will not form a secure suction seal with the walls of your vaginal canal. In most cases, users can wear both sizes of VOXAPOD, but sometimes you need to go up a size to form a leak-proof seal with your vaginal walls. 

Don’t worry, we’ve got you covered. If you think you ordered the wrong size, email us at hello@voxapod and we will help you troubleshoot and / or happily replace your cup with the correct size. Hassle free. 

3. Cup floweth over.

So, your period is more like the Red Sea than a babbling brook. No problem—empty your menstrual cup more often. Your VOXAPOD menstrual cup should be emptied at least every 12 hours regardless, but you may need to empty your cup every 4-6 hours if you’re someone with a heavy flow or heavier flow days. 

red-ocean-water

It can help to empty your cup more often in the beginning when you’re first learning to use VOXAPOD so you can see just how much menstrual fluid your body is releasing on different days of your cycle. You will begin to notice a pattern, and know which days you need to empty more often to avoid an overflowing cup. 

If you ordered the small size, and are having to empty your cup too often, you may find that you need the medium size to accommodate a heavy flow. Alternatively, some users prefer having both sizes--the medium size for their heavier days and the small size for their lighter days. It’s really a personal preference, and you’ll know what’s best for you after a few cycles of using your VOXAPOD menstrual cup.

4. The phantom leak.

Some women spot from the menstrual fluid that is already in the vaginal canal prior to inserting VOXAPOD, which has nothing to do with you inserting the cup improperly. This will often look like spotting in your panties or you may see blood when you wipe, but the phantom leak will dissipate as the cup begins to catch your flow.

Some users prefer to use period panties or a liner to absorb any phantom leaks. 

5. The cup was placed above your cervix. No bueno.

Menstrual fluid is uterus lining that sheds and flows through the cervix and out of the vaginal canal. If your cup is placed above your cervix, it will naturally leak as the cup is not below the cervix to capture the fluid.

Artwork by Brittany Lang | VOXAPOD™

Artwork by Brittany Lang | VOXAPOD™

Keep in mind that your cervix will likely be higher during ovulation and drop during your period, particularly mid-cycle, so the best placement of your VOXAPOD may vary throughout your cycle. The good news--our cup is uniquely designed to accommodate even the lowest of cervixes. Nevertheless, you want to make sure it is placed below the cervix to prevent leaks.

6. Oh shit! Literally.

Constipation and diarrhea can be common during or before your period, and the pressure of the bowel can impact or move your cup slightly when in use. Don’t worry, it won’t cause your VOXAPOD to expel out, like a tampon would, thanks to the suction seal that holds a menstrual cup in place. It may, however, put pressure against the wall of the cup allowing menstrual blood to spill over the top intermittently.  While not common, it can happen, especially if your cup is very full. You may notice spotting or a little blood when you wipe, and it can be helpful to empty your cup more often if you’re experiencing this. 

woman-on-toilet

7.  Weak pelvic floor muscles are the culprit.

If your pelvic floor muscles are weak they can’t hold the cup tight enough against the vaginal wall, causing leaks. How do you know if you have weak pelvic floor muscles? You may tinkle your panties when you cough, sneeze or laugh. You may also notice that  your cup leaks when you get up from a seated position. Kegels and other pelvic floor exercises can strengthen the pelvic muscles and help prevent cup (or bladder) leakage!

woman-on-yoga-mat

8. Time to clean the suction holes on your cup.

Those little holes at the top of your cup help form a suction seal after your VOXAPOD menstrual cup is inserted. If they are clogged with blood, bodily fluid, or debris, the cup won’t form a proper seal, causing leaks. Make sure all three holes are clean every time you rinse your cup. You can stretch the holes under running warm water or soak your VOXAPOD to get any stubborn particles out.

Bottom line is that period leaks suck. However, most of the time they can be prevented with a little persistence and some helpful tips. Tried everything here and still having trouble? Email us at hello@voxapod and we will help you troubleshoot. Do you know a helpful tip that we didn't mention here? Drop it in the comments below… you never know who it may help!

Ready to make the switch to crazy easier, leak-proof period care?

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Amanda WilsonComment