Menstrual cup removal tips
A step-by-step guide to help you remove your menstrual cup.
For some people, removing a menstrual cup is the trickiest part of using a menstrual cup. With practice, you will master releasing the suction seal and removing your cup.
Thoroughly wash your hands with a mild soap and warm water before removing your cup and follow these removal tips.
It’s a good ideal to practice inserting and removing your cup a couple of times a week when you are in the shower, before your period starts. This will make the transition easier when you do have your period.
2. Relax and get comfortable
- Find a comfortable position. For some people this may be squatting, standing, standing with one leg raised or sitting with the tailbone tucked under.
- Squatting or sitting on the toilet and tucking the tailbone under (i.e. tilting the pelvis forward) will shorten the vaginal canal and make the cup easier to reach.
- Removal is easier if you are not tense. A relaxed jaw is often the trick to relaxing the rest of the body and pelvic floor muscles. Lightly touch the tip of your tongue to the roof of your mouth and relax the jaw to help your body relax.
- The shower is an ideal location for removing your cup as you won’t be as anxious about spilling menstrual fluid when first learning.
3. Release the suction seal
This is one of the most important steps and is often overlooked. The cup forms a suction seal with the vaginal walls and this is what helps prevent leaking. The JuJu Cup has 4 holes in the rim of the cup. These holes allow for the suction seal to be released prior to removing the cup so always ensure they are kept clean and clear of menstrual debris.
- Do not try to remove your JuJu by pulling excessively on the stem as this will increase the suction seal and make removal more difficult and may also cause the stem to break.
- To release the suction seal, squeeze or pinch the base of the cup with your index finger and thumb for a couple of seconds. This will cause the cup to ‘dent’ and the suction seal will be broken or released. You may hear a suction sound as the seal is released.
- If you have a high cervix/long vaginal canal, you may find your cup sits particularly high and you may not be able to reach the base of the cup with your index finger and thumb. If this is the case, slide the index finger only, up beside the cup, and press the cup towards the centre for a couple of seconds to release the suction seal. If you cup is still too high to reach, squat or tuck the tailbone under to shorten the vaginal canal and bear down to move the cup lower. Use the stem to gently move the cup lower until you are able to release the seal. A cup will often sit higher after sleeping so allow yourself an hour after waking before attempting to remove your cup as gravity will often move the uterus, cervix and cup lower throughout the day.
4. Move the cup lower
- Pinch the base of your JuJu cup on the raised butterfly pattern. Pinch firmly enough to get a good grip but not so hard that it would cause the menstrual fluid to spill out of the cup.
- Some people find completely drying their hands and pinching the index finger and thumb together, before inserting them into the vagina, helps with getting a better grip.
- Gently ‘walk’ the cup downward towards the vaginal opening, rocking it from side to side and stopping once the stem and a small portion of the base is protruding. Bearing down lightly will also help move the cup lower.
5. Remove the cup
Remove the cup on an angle, removing the top side of the rim, tilting it, then removing the bottom side of the rim.
If you find this method of removal too uncomfortable, gently shape the cup into a ‘c’ or ‘u’ shape, this is also know as the 'hot dog in a bun method', and involves folding the cup into a c as done during insertion, which will make it slimmer in shape and easier to remove. Watch a video on How to remove your menstrual cup pain free.
Getting used to removing the JuJu cup may take a couple of tries but once you find the method that works for you, it will become easier.
If you have had few attempts and are still having difficulty removing your cup, take a break from it for a while as being tense or anxious may cause the vaginal muscles to tighten which will make removal even more difficult. An independent menstrual cup reviewer also has a helpful video on Tips for Removing Your Menstrual Cup. If you are still unable to removing your cup after a number of attempts, please seek help from a doctor your local emergency department.