Can Menstrual Cups be Used by Virgins?

Can you use a menstrual cup if you’re a virgin?

Yes, absolutely! Before we dive into tips for using a JuJu cup if you are a virgin, let’s look at a why this is such a common question.

Firstly, what does it mean to be a virgin?

Depending on a number of religious, cultural or other beliefs, virginity can mean different things to different people.

Generally speaking, a ‘virgin’ is someone who has never had penetrative sexual intercourse. However, sex looks different for everyone, depending on your sexual orientation or preferences. For example, some people may never have penetrative ‘penis-in-vagina’ sex, but if they have had oral or anal sex, they may not consider themselves to be a virgin.

When looking at whether virgins can use menstrual cups, the primary concern is usually to do with the hymen still being intact, or the misconception that using a menstrual cup will mean that you are no longer a virgin (which is not true!)

For the purpose of this article, when we refer to ‘virgins’ we mean those who have not had penetrative vaginal sex.

What is a hymen?

The hymen is a thin membrane that surrounds the vaginal opening. The shape of the hymen varies greatly from person to person, but usually has a ‘half moon’ shape as shown in the diagram below. The membrane may appear to have one or many small holes in it, or it may be barely visible. In the case of an imperforate hymen, the membrane completely covers the vaginal opening, meaning that menstrual blood cannot flow through. This condition usually requires minor surgery to create a small opening in the hymen.

Your hymen may stay intact until you have penetrative sex, or in some cases it may break while playing sports or doing other physical activity such as horse riding.

Image: youngwomenshealth.org


Will I still be a virgin if I use a menstrual cup?

Yes. There are a lot of misconceptions around using menstrual cups or other menstrual hygiene products that are inserted into the vagina if you are a virgin. Some people believe that inserting anything into the vagina that may break or stretch the hymen means you have ‘lost’ your virginity. Medically speaking, if you are a virgin and choose to use a menstrual cup, you will still be a virgin until you have sexual intercourse - even if your hymen is no longer intact.

If keeping your hymen intact is important to you, your culture or religion, then you may wish to refrain from using any form of internal sanitary products.

Will it hurt to use a menstrual cup if you are a virgin?

A menstrual cup is worn completely internally and may cause the hymen to tear or cause some discomfort during the first use for younger or non-sexually active people. But remember, the vagina is very elastic! For most people, your menstrual cup will simply push past your hymen and won’t cause any tearing at all.

Tips for using a menstrual cup if you are a virgin

If your hymen is still intact, there may be a bit of a learning curve when it comes to using a JuJu cup. However, there is usually a learning curve for anyone who is using a menstrual cup for the first time!
Here are some tips for using a menstrual cup if you are a virgin:

  1. Get familiar and comfortable with your body. This is the most important step when making the switch to using a JuJu cup. If you are a virgin, you may not be familiar with the feeling of having anything inside your vagina, or you may not know which opening is which. We recommend having a read of our anatomy guide, grab a hand mirror and don’t be shy when it comes to exploring your body.
  2. Choose a smaller JuJu cup. A smaller cup such as JuJu Model 1 will be much easier to insert and remove if you are a virgin and your hymen is still intact. However, the best size for you may vary. If your JuJu is too small, it won’t form a seal within the vagina; while if it is too large, it won’t be able to open correctly. Refer to our size guide to find the right size JuJu for you.
  3. Use the punch-down fold. There are many different ways you can fold your JuJu cup to insert it, but the punch-down fold gives the cup a smaller surface area to insert. Your JuJu will also pop open easier when using this fold.
  4. Try to relax. The more relaxed you are, the easier it will be to insert and remove your JuJu cup. Remember, your JuJu cup can’t get lost or stuck inside you. Check out our removal tips for all you need to know about removing your JuJu cup.
  5. Use lubricant. Using a little bit of pH balanced, water-based lubricant on the rim of your JuJu cup will make it easier to slide in.
  6. Take it slow and be patient with yourself. You may not get your JuJu all the way in the first time around, and that’s ok! There is no rush. You will get the hang of it if you keep trying.

Above all, remember that you should choose to use menstrual products that you feel comfortable with. If you are looking for a more sustainable, eco-friendly alternative for your period but don’t feel comfortable using a JuJu cup, our reusable cloth pads are a great alternative!

Further Reading:

Adolescents and menstrual cups: using a menstrual cup as a teen.