By Aimee Roseborrough

Most of us have similar resolutions: eat better, train harder, be kinder, etc, but how about a resolution to help the earth and make your life easier?

I’m talking about using a menstrual cup. You can decrease your impact on the earth by not using tampons and/or pads anymore! Menstrual cups have become slightly more mainstream recently and several companies make them. They’re designed to be reusable, so you don’t have the heaps of trash. Also, you don’t have to worry about toxic shock syndrome. Finally, when you’re climbing outside, you don’t have to deal with packing out your used feminine hygiene products.

But aren’t they hard to use?

Not really. There’s a bit of a learning curve and during that time, I would recommend using panty liners or Thinx period panties so as not to ruin your undies. You can find videos online with explicit directions. An Australian blogger detailed her first three months using a menstrual cup, which includes some encouragement if all of this sounds alarming. After 6 months of use, I have full confidence in my menstrual cup not leaking even on my heaviest flow days while climbing at my limit. The greatest part is you can leave it in for as long as you want until it’s full. If you have a light flow, you can go all day while out climbing and not have to deal with it. It’s like not having your period!

What about the mess?

Cleaning the cup might be a little messier than disposing of a tampon, but menstrual cups are far and away cleaner than pads. You can sleep with one in and not have to deal with using a pad at night and feeling messy in the morning. Cleaning the cup while out climbing is a bit challenging. I recommend bringing intimate wipes and extra water.

What brand/size should I use?

I decided on a Me Luna cup because they have so many options of size, firmness and stem type. I am a smaller woman (5 feet tall) with a light flow and I’ve had 2 babies so I chose a shorty, small, classic firmness cup with a ring stem. I ended up trying the classic firmness instead of the sport because i was worried about the sport being more difficult to remove. I chose small because my flow is light and I chose the ring stem because it’s the easiest to remove. Me Luna has a helpful size guide.

The menstrual cup has changed my life. I only wish I had known more about them and been brave enough to try them decades ago.

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