Circus on your Period: Soft Cups Edition

 

So.. it’s month 3 and I’m running a bit behind on writing this. I apologize for the late-ish post as I’ve been working on some HELLA exciting things for the site. You may even see a little cart on the bottom of your screen now and think, “huh, that’s new” WELL IT IS. So maybe there will be a little store with MUCH needed witty circus stuff, Maybe you should subscribe so I can let you know! Why don’t you go ahead and fill out that little button down here to stay INFORMED…

because the more folks subscribe, the more traffic I get and the more content I can make and maybe even one day do this for my job. #cirquegoals

 

About the product

Okay, so back to facts. It’s review numero three and this month it was the product: Softcups. I describe Softcups as a bendable plastic ring with a plastic “net” attached to the bottom. I’d like for the company site to describe what softcups are, however, there really is no content about the product on their website. See for yourself

 

Apparently Softcups was recently purchased by Flexcups. They’re both incredibly similar products, really with the only difference being one is a pink ring and the other is a black ring. The other difference is how you obtain the products. I was able to walk into my CVS and purchase Softcups on the day of my period. For $12 + TAX I had 2 periods worth of discs that I could happily take home then and there. Flexcups is set up as an online only retailer where you can purchase 24 to 36 discs at a time.

For the same company owning the same brand, my biggest complaint is that I shouldn’t have to switch between two platforms to get information on what is marketed as two different products. I understand they do the same thing, however, I shouldn’t have to go to Flex’s company page to get information on how to put an object in my body. I need that information to be readily available. For the rest of this review, I’m going to only review Softcups as their own entitiy, and I will review Flexcups in the upcoming months. That being said, I won’t use any media or youtube that isn’t labelled as Softcups. Why? Because as a consumer I shouldn’t have to understand a brands company, for example Gap and Banana Republic are considered “sister brands” but I don’t buy my shirts at GAP and then get redirected to Banana Repiblics site for any questions on how to clean it, right? And that’s a shirt…

 

I PUT THIS PRODUCT IN MY VAGINA.

MY

VAGINA

 

So if the softcup site could have a little more information on it other than a sad newsletter that’d be great.

Insertion

In the softcup box that I got from Walgreens, there was a picture of how to insert the product. Unlike a menstrual cup that goes deep near the cervix, a menstrual disc goes down near the pubic bone. It’s a little funny because you have to “pop” it against your uterine walls. While uncomfortable at first, I could feel my body heat up the plastic and it became more comfortable with time. My first day I leaked but I later found that I had inserted it wrong. (Luckily I had my period panties on for backup). I didn’t insert it where it had “flipped” against my pubic bone that created a full block, but I had it in as a slant. I later found that if I insert it and could do a quick squat without my vag hurting that meant it was in correctly.

About my workouts

Now to the circus. There was a variant in this workout as opposed to the last months. In previous months I worked on conditioning and used the same exact exercises for each month, however, this time around I don’t have as much access to the studio and I wanted to work on the skills I recently learned. I created a video for the moves and I’ll post them underneath each description. That way, what I call a c-shape may be called something else, somewhere else and I want this review to be understood by all circus folks.

The moves I won’t go into too much detail are Climbs, Straddles, body beats and one hand grip conditioning. Those were pretty standard in all my other tests, but this month I really worked on C-shapes for roll up and beats to scorpian. Those two move require a shit ton of shoulder flexibility and core control, which is why I think I had the results I did…

Cramping and Leakage

This is the first product I tried that I had cramping with aerials. The cramping was the WORST while I worked on C shapes on the floor and when I did a new drop. The c-shape drill has me isolate my lower abdominals to “crunch” and lets me pull my body around itself. While I push my arms and legs ahead, my torso has to “melt” into the floor and my hips open up so that my legs can turn into the motions.Like This:

 

(Insert C-shape video)

 

I’m just learning these and they require so much body awareness and muscle movements from parts of my body I’ve never really worked with before. The drop is where you pike down from a catchers and make a loop, to then swing that loop over your legs and drop into it. The force from the drop falls ONLY on your lower hips near your abdomen. Like This:

 

 

With the softcups I cramped and HURT. I also had the kind of tired afterwards that your muscles are not only exhausted but they literally can’t do anything for the rest of the day. They’re clocking out and not approving overtime for anyone else. I had a few moments of the sharp pain but it was the exhaustion afterwards that got me. The C-shapes and drop were where I experienced the “sharp” cramping. I did experience a dull sensation when I would climb and straddle beat as well, so it’s not just the C Shapes from hell.

I also think there’s a joke in there somehwre.. C shapes.. C for Cunts.. It’s in there guys. And I’ll find it someday.

Leakage.

Yup. I also had leakage. :/ Everything felt fine during my warm up with just climbs and with straddle beats. For me, I sometimes associate cramps with heavy days, which sometimes involves really painful clots. I haven’t experienced those in YEARS but the pain from cshapes was so similar to those early period days. It was at the end of my workout that I went to the restroom and saw a stain in my non-period panties. That was frustrating and also kinda embarrassing. Again, I’m not sure when this incident happened but it did.

I’d like to try this brand again. I followed a youtube video for insertion instructions (although it by flexcups, which means I didn’t get the video from the actual product I tired). I also wore the disc all throughout my period in non aerial activities and I didn’t leak but I did cramp, especially while running.

Why?

I’m looking at the placement and I decided to look at what muscles are actually contracted while doing aerial. Does the softcup move? I wonder if my uterine walls were pushing the sides of the plastic whenever I would either invert or crunch with my sides. Here’s a placement illustration from the internet.

soft_cup_instructions3.gif

Here it is compared to the placement of a menstrual cup. 

softcuptodiva.jpg

 

For future tests I’m going to start adding in C-shape exercises to the mix. It’s easy for me to say “oh well, this product worked on my conditioning workouts so it essentially works” but it doesn’t. I have to remind myself that if I want to train on a period day I should be able too. That’s the entire reason I’m writing this series, so the information is readily available for anyone else going into aerial training with Aunt Flo. We USE those pelvic muscles and yes, some activities are going to use them more than others but that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t be able to do those activities. Now I want to know whether C-shapes are just killer when I’m on my period or whether the plastic ring pushing against my uterine walls plays a role. I’ll write an update and add it in the comments.

 

I will say when I wore Softcups throughout everyday activities, it was my favorite product. It literally was more comfortable than a tampon, had no mess and lasted 12 hours. If this were a competition, I’d say Softcups beat the Divacup because when I took it out, I didn’t feel like my uterus was ripped out of my vagina, which is a PLUS. It was even disposable, so no awkward, Carrie’esque walks to a public sink in between uses. It’s just such a bummer my lady muscles worked against it so hard and I couldn’t have that same comfort while training.

 I'm bringing an aerial rig to this island next month. 

I'm bringing an aerial rig to this island next month. 

 

It’s a good thing I’m trying more products! Stay tuned for next month when I test out organic tampons from Aunt Flow.

Oh, and if you want to stay in the know, hit that subscribe button to receive sparsley sent newsletters from me. They’re not as bad as my texting or callback manners, BUT IT’S REAL CLOSE. I'M WORKING ON IT! Oh, and check out our first ever circus patch. <3