Why a Menstrual Cup is the Most Sustainable and Feminist Option
Let’s talk about menstrual protection. And why not put the subject in a feminist and sustainable context, ‘cause, to be honest, that’s the perspective that matters. So says Monki, and so says we.
The H&M owned clothing chain Monki has made the menstrual cup the main focus of their latest campaign. Teaming up with feminist photographer, artist and director, Arvida Byström, they’ve made three short films starring Madame Gandhi, Juliet Atto and Flora Wiström, all sharing their personal relationships to the menstrual cup. Hint: they love it.
And why shouldn’t they? It’s about the only thing that’s “revolutionized” the menstrual business—a.k.a. every single woman’s business—since the freakin’ tampon came in the 1930s. Correction: Apparently, the menstrual cup came along already in the late 1800s, but we sure haven’t heard about, or used it, until circa now.
So, what’s so great about a menstrual cup, you may ask? Well, if you’re not hooked yet, this might bring you over: Firstly, you only need to buy one, and you can use it every single day (and night) of every single period for up to—and this is amazing—10 years! No need to stack up on pads and tampons any longer.
A menstrual cup made from organic medical grade silicon only costs around 35 dollars. If you think about how much you spend on pads and tampons every year, which would probably be a bit more than that, you’ll quickly realize that a cup would save you a lot of cash. But it’s not only about your private economy, but about the environmental cost too. The world clearly doesn’t need more throwaway, single-use products that waste our planet’s resources.
“The world clearly doesn’t need more throwaway, single-use products”
If you ask your vagina, we’re sure it would prefer a cup too. Tampons, for instance, absorb a lot more then just menstrual blood—that is, the natural and necessary fluids that are supposed to stay inside you. This can cause irritation, dryness and a messed up pH-balance. Why, right?
However, we do have to say it can be kind of tricky to use a menstrual cup the first couple of times you try it. Don’t be scared though, you just need to get the hang of it. Once you do, you probably won’t even think about it. Also, since the cup can hold more blood then a tampon, you only need to empty it 2-4 times a day. Yay!
Talking about periods, and being on a feminist agenda, you can’t help but thinking about the unequal aspect of this whole thing. The fact is that boys and men don’t have do deal with this or consider any of these costs at all. So, this being a strictly female problem, and a universal one to that, you can’t help but wonder why free menstrual protection isn’t considered a basic human right. Especially when it would actually make a huge and life-changing difference to millions of women in the world.
So, what Monki is doing with this campaign is two things: One is launching an exclusive, pink (of coarse!) menstrual cup in collaboration with menstrual cup brand Lunette, as past of their aim to empower women and end the period stigma. You’ll find this limited edition cup in selected Monki stores and online as of right now. Check it out here.
The other thing is that they, together with Lunette, are donating 5000 menstrual cups to The Cup Foundation—a non-profit organization that works to educate and empower girls living in challenging environments in Kenya. By providing these girls with menstrual cups, it enables them to stay in school—which they often can’t otherwise—and manage their periods in a safe and sustainable way. Today, over five hundred million women are estimated to be lacking sufficient resources to manage their periods (as you can read here). Needless to say, this has to change.
We can only hope that more feminist and well doing companies and organizations sees this need and makes a contribution too. So, everyone—please do!
Watch the films by Arvida Byström below!