A Moon-what?!

By Nia Thomas

When I say the word Mooncup to a group of women there are usually two distinct reactions. One is a bemused look and the response a moon-what?, the other is a broad smile and an exclamation of aren't they amazing! As a proud Mooncup convert, one of my aims in life is to move women from the former group to the latter. 

So for the moon-what? people, just what exactly is a Mooncup? The Mooncup/Keeper/Diva Cup goes by a variety of names, but all are essentially the same thing, a reusable sanitary product that provides an alternative to tampons and pads. More specifically, a Mooncup is a small silicone or rubber ‘cup’ that when inserted (like a tampon) catches your blood, instead of absorbing it. One Mooncup costs the same as a couple of months’ worth of tampons – making it way more economical in the long run as well as convenient and eco-friendly; what’s not to love?! 

Mooncups are eco-friendly - The average woman buys, uses and throws away 11,000 tampons and/or sanitary towels during her lifetime. That’s 11,000 tampons/towels that end up in a landfill or in the sea!!! With each Mooncup lasting up to 10 years, you’ll only need a handful to last a lifetime!

Mooncups are convenient - You’ll never have to rummage around in your bag again looking for that one elusive tampon. No worrying about being out longer than you'd planned and running out of supplies - just rinse and reinsert!

Mooncups are cheaper - Tampons cost around £3 a box - with a little bit of maths that means that for someone earning minimum wage a lifetime’s supply of tampons is the equivalent to around 38 full working days pay! Whereas one Mooncup, which should last you up to 10 years costs about £20, just a few hours work by comparison, and a lifetimes supply would only equate to a day or two’s work.

This video from the people at Mooncup UK covers all the main points in a handy rap battle:

So in summary, using a Mooncup is:  

  • Cheaper
  • Much more environmentally friendly
  • More convenient
  • Safer (there is no link between Mooncups and Toxic Shock Syndrome, unlike with tampons)
  • Great for travelling and adventure - especially in countries where tampons are hard to come by (Africa, Asia, Latin America)
  • Works in harmony with your body

I was sceptical at first, and like anything new there's an adjustment period. But since buying my Mooncup two years ago I've never looked back! Together we've spent a year bike touring in Latin America, lived in a wood cabin in the wilds of Alaska, danced, swam in the sea, backpacked and even spent a day or two working in the office. For me it is the perfect sanitary product; always there when I need it  and gentle on the planet. 

Backpacking is even more fun when you don't have to pack out used sanitary products!
Backpacking is even more fun when you don't have to pack out used sanitary products!

Here at On The River, we love the Mooncup so much that we have teamed up with Mooncup/The Keeper and become affiliates. If you buy your mooncup through our link, you’ll not only be helping the environment, you’ll also be helping On The River!  It doesn't cost you any more, but for every person that buys their Mooncup/Keeper through our link, the company will donate some money to On The River to help us reach as many children in as many schools as possible along the Missouri-Mississippi river system this Summer/Fall and spread the word on why we all need to help look after our rivers.