Guide

Menstrual Cups With a Valve: A Complete Guide

In this post, you will hopefully find answers to some of the questions that you might have regarding menstrual cups with a valve. You will also find a list of some of the more popular valve cups, valve cup pros and cons, honest YouTube reviews, and more.

Menstrual Cups With a Valve

The menstrual cup has become very popular in the last couple of years, or you could probably even say decades.

With the increase in popularity more and more companies, cup brands, and cup models are appearing in the feminine care market.

One such model is the valve menstrual cup.

What Is a Menstrual Cup With a Valve?

A menstrual cup with a valve, or valve cup for short, is a type of menstrual cup that has a stem that functions as a valve for controlling or regulating the flow of menstrual blood. The menstrual blood flow is controlled or regulated by opening, closing, or partially obstructing a part of the stem.

Basically what this means is that you can empty your cup without having to remove it by manually opening and then closing the stem.

How Does a Menstrual Cup With a Valve Work?

There are four different types of valves.

Plug, Cap, Ball, and Pinch.

The Plug Valve is like a small cork.

You completely remove and replace the cork with a new one when it's time to empty your cup.

The Cap Valve is a lid that is attached to the stem.

Open the lid and empty the contents of your cup.

The Ball Valve has a small ball inside the stem.

Pinch the ball, and push it out of place to allow the contents to pass around it.

The Pinch Valve has no moving parts.

Pinch and squeeze a specially designed area on the stem to open the valve and empty the contents of your cup.

Are Menstrual Cups With a Valve Safe?

There are a lot of valve cups on the internet.

If you do a search on Alibaba, AliExpress, Wish, eBay, Amazon, or Flipcart you will see that there is a lot to choose from.

And you will also notice that a lot of these products look exactly the same (they use the exact same product images, etc.) but with different brand names.

Private label branding is a totally legit form of selling products but it confuses the heck out of customers.

If you really would like to get your hands on one of these cups I would suggest doing a background check of both the brand and the manufacturer of the cup before buying one.

For example, when writing this article I went to Alibaba and looked up two manufacturers claiming they are FDA certified and looked it up on fda.gov and found out that they are indeed FDA registered.

(This doesn't necessarily mean that the silicone or menstrual cups are certified/registered by the FDA. Only cups that are registered or cleared by the FDA are allowed to be sold in the US. Here's a list of all of the menstrual cups that are registered by the FDA. And here's a list of all of the menstrual cups that are cleared by the FDA.)

Another aspect of valve cup safety is prolonged usage.

  IMPORTANT

Remember, valve or no valve, always remove and clean your cup if you've reached the 12-hour mark!

Most valve cup brands say to remove and clean your cup every 12 hours.

(I saw "24 hours" in one promotional video on YouTube and there might be more promoting other numbers!)

12 hours is the same recommendation as other non-valve cup brands.

This is to prevent TSS.

A valve cup might still encourage you to wear it for longer than 12 hours, however.

This is something that you should never consider doing!

Does a Menstrual Cup With a Valve Work If You Have a Low Cervix?

Low cervix cups range between 45 mm and below in cup body length.

The valve cups that I've looked at all measure more than 45 mm.

Plus, you cannot trim the stem!

So they are not considered low cervix cups.

However, if you do have a low cervix and you still want to try one of these cups then you could try this little trick: (The link goes to that particular frame of a YouTube video.)

Fold the stem over and tuck it behind your pubic bone.

Menstrual Cup With a Valve Pros

  •   You can empty your cup without removing it.
  •   A valve cup can be a great alternative if you're out camping, hiking, trekking, or traveling a lot.
  •   Good option if you have trouble inserting, removing, and emptying your (regular) cup in public.
  •   A valve cup can be a good alternative for those who have trouble inserting and removing their (regular) cup several times a day for various reasons.
  •   Various valve types to choose from.

Menstrual Cup With a Valve Cons

  •   The stem cannot be cut/adjusted.
  •   Blood, clots, discharge, or a combination of these may not always pass through.
  •   Valve cups must still be removed and cleaned every 12 hours.
  •   The valve mechanism can oftentimes be unreliable.
  •   Poorly designed and low-quality end-user instructions.
  •   Lots of private label brands with different price tags.
  •   Lack of information about the materials used.
  •   The contents may be slow to drain.
  •   Operating the valve mechanism may be difficult.
  •   Some cup models have extra moving parts that can get lost.
  •   The small pieces can be hard to remove or replace.
  •   The Pinch Valve needs to be squeezed in a specific area which can be hard to locate if not properly marked.

What Real Cup Users Have to Say About Their Experience With a Valve Cup

I picked 9 random reviews from Amazon and I think they summarize what you'd expect from these types of cups pretty well:

1 "The valve doesn't work on this and it was uncomfortable so unfortunately, it wasn't for me."

2 "I really like the concept of this cup. The idea that you don't have to remove it to empty it is great, however, I found it far too big and very uncomfortable which is a shame."

3 "I have used a cup before and I found the shape of this one made it much easier to fold and insert which was great. Another plus point is I didn't notice any leaking. However, the stem was very uncomfortable, which is a shame because the valve idea is so convenient. I gave it a go for 3 days but the discomfort of the stem has now made me revert back to my old cup."

4 "Pretty messy and hard to use."

5 "This has been on my wish list for a couple of months, I deeply regret not buying it sooner. I brought it as I hate emptying a cup in public toilets, this completely solves that problem. It takes a couple of days to get used to it as the stem is longer than a traditional cup. But it's worth it. I highly recommend this product!"

6 "The menstrual cup is a great idea but I'm afraid this particular product is not for me. I persevered through 2 cycles but found I could feel the stem a lot if the time and would have to take myself off to the loo to try and reposition it."

7 "The valve has never leaked on me and is super easy to use. I've been through 4 or 5 cycles now using just this cup and I'll never go back to tampons or pads again."

8 "This cup feels very different than my DivaCup and Lily Cup. It says it is medical-grade silicone like the others, but something is definitely different. The stem didn't bother me at all, but after a few hours, I'm afraid the cup itself is causing irritation. I probably won't give it another chance. The valve, however, is a real game-changer! I'll be looking for another valve cup."

9 "Sounded like a great idea so I decided to test it out. It is not made for anyone that moves around or sits. It'll probably work great if you don't move at all but since I'm constantly on the move it shifts and the valve opens and it leaks."

Honest Menstrual Cup With a Valve Reviews on YouTube

The following videos are three of the better ones that I could find on YouTube.

(Unfortunately, they're all about the AIWO cup so please check information about other cups as well before thinking about buying one.)

There were others but they were either of low quality or made by some manufacturer only promoting their product.

It looks like the brand AIWO is one of the more popular valve cup brands at the moment if you look at ratings and reviews on Amazon and search results on YouTube.

The three videos below all are about AIWO.

List of Menstrual Cups With a Valve

Here's a list of valve cups actively being promoted and sold on Amazon.

These are also the valve cups that had the most ratings and reviews.

I've also included the Floweret Stem Cup.

This cup is sold outside of Amazon.

Find my perfect menstrual cup match

AIWO Menstrual Cup

AIWO Menstrual Cup

Menstrual Cup Diameter Body Length Stem Length Total Length Capacity Material Country Brand Country Manufacturer
AIWO Small 42 mm N/A N/A 78 mm 25 ml (Medical-Grade?/Food-Grade?) Silicone China? China?
AIWO Large 46 mm N/A N/A 80 mm 30 ml (Medical-Grade?/Food-Grade?) Silicone China? China?

The AIWO Menstrual Cup comes in two colors Pink and Clear, and two sizes Small and Large.

The smaller model can hold 25 ml and the larger model can hold 30 ml.

Compared to standard cups these would fit into the category average capacity.

The total length of size Small is 78 mm and the total length of size Large is 80 mm.

A cm or longer than regular cups and remember that the stem is not trimmable.

Viina Menstrual Cup

Viina Menstrual Cup

Menstrual Cup Diameter Body Length Stem Length Total Length Capacity Material Country Brand Country Manufacturer
Viina Small 40 mm 52 mm 23 mm 75 mm 25 ml (Medical-Grade?/Food-Grade?) Silicone China? China?
Viina Large 44 mm 53 mm 30 mm 83 mm 30 ml (Medical-Grade?/Food-Grade?) Silicone China? China?

The Viina Menstrual Cup is available in a light purple color and comes in two sizes, Small and Large.

The smaller model holds 25 ml and the larger model holds 30 ml.

Floweret Stem Cup

Floweret Stem Cup Menstrual Cup Valve Cup

Menstrual Cup Diameter Body Length Stem Length Total Length Capacity Material Country Brand Country Manufacturer
Floweret Stem Cup Small 45 mm N/A N/A 70 mm 25 ml (Medical-Grade?/Food-Grade?) Silicone England China?
Floweret Stem Cup Large 50 mm N/A N/A 73 mm 30 ml (Medical-Grade?/Food-Grade?) Silicone England China?

The Floweret Stem Cup has a Pinch Stem valve and comes in two sizes, Small and Large.

The Floweret Stem Cup features air holes, measuring markings, and grippers.

The smaller cup holds 25 ml and the larger cup can hold 30 ml.

I also noticed that the links to the FDA that they provide on their product page are broken.

And if you check FDA's website (here, and here) there's no Floweret, Stem Cup, The Tulip Cup, or any of the company brands listed.

Menstrual Cups With a Valve Comparison Chart

Menstrual Cup Diameter Body Length Stem Length Total Length Capacity Material Country Brand Country Manufacturer
AIWO Small 42 mm N/A N/A 78 mm 25 ml (Medical-Grade?/Food-Grade?) Silicone China? China?
AIWO Large 46 mm N/A N/A 80 mm 30 ml (Medical-Grade?/Food-Grade?) Silicone China? China?
Viina Small 40 mm 52 mm 23 mm 75 mm 25 ml (Medical-Grade?/Food-Grade?) Silicone China? China?
Viina Large 44 mm 53 mm 30 mm 83 mm 30 ml (Medical-Grade?/Food-Grade?) Silicone China? China?
Floweret Stem Cup Small 45 mm N/A N/A 70 mm 25 ml (Medical-Grade?/Food-Grade?) Silicone England China?
Floweret Stem Cup Large 50 mm N/A N/A 73 mm 30 ml (Medical-Grade?/Food-Grade?) Silicone England China?

Where Can You Buy a Menstrual Cup With a Valve?

You can find valve cups on Alibaba, AliExpress, Wish, eBay, Amazon, and Flipcart.

You should know by now that this might not be the best purchase of your life so try to at least mitigate risks as much as possible by doing your homework if you're still planning on buying one!

Not Convinced This Is the Type of Cup for You?

Find my perfect menstrual cup

At menstrualcup.eco we provide you with a free online service called CUP-FIGURATOR™ Menstrual Cup Finder for matching your body with cups from our large menstrual cup database that our sophisticated non-biased matchmaking search algorithm finds for you.

If you would like to give it a try, visit menstrualcup.eco and follow the instructions.

We have most of the popular brands and it only takes a couple of minutes to complete the app!

Please note that at the time of this writing, we have not added any valve cups to our menstrual cup database.

The reason for this is simply because of the lack of information regarding these products, brands, and companies.

Safety first!

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