Pads, Tampons or Menstrual cup? How to choose the right one for you?

Pads, Tampons or Menstrual cup? How to choose the right one for you?


Period products are basic necessity for women.  There are lots period care products available in the market and it is though not easy to choose the right one but it is certainly important to get the right one for self. As they say, that size matters. So your size, your body structure and your preference matters when it comes to choosing the right period care. But if this is your first time then it might take some experimenting to find what's right for you.

Most of the menstruators use one or more of the following

  • sanitary pads

  • tampons

  • menstrual cups

  • reusable pads

  • menstrual disc

How to choose the right pad?

There are many different types of pads, including:

Some girls have heavier bleeding with their periods and others have lighter bleeding. And most girls have a mix of lighter days and heavier days.


Pads come in different sizes and different absorbencies.  Mostly size is taken as a criteria for absorbency and many girls end up choosing large (wrong size for them) pads even when they are not too big in size. They feel that the large pads will soak more and they are leakproof. In Fact if the size of your pad doesn't match you then the chance of leakage are much higher. The pad has to stick closer to your body for quick absorption. So small pads might work better for you than the large ones.  It might take a little bit of experimenting to find the right pad for the different times of your period.

Some pads are scented or come with a deodorant in them. Most of the scented pads have chemical fragrance that is harmful for your skin as well as your internal parts. These can irritate the vagina or cause an allergic reaction in some girls and it can even lead to major infections and other larger medical issues. 

  • Reusable pads. These pads are washed after each time you wear them. They're sold in natural health stores and online. These kinds of pads snap or clip onto a girl's underwear. Girls might use these pads because they feel they're better for the environment or to save money. It's all a matter of personal preference.

What Are Tampons?

Tampons are usually made of absorbent material similar to pads. Actually one can say the tampons are pads rolled into a small cylindrical shape to absorb blood from inside of vagina. Tampons are small tube like structures and come in different sizes and absorbencies for heavier and lighter periods.

Tampons also can come with or without deodorant. There's no need for deodorant in a tampon, though, because changing tampons regularly usually gets rid of any odor. The deodorant in tampons can irritate the vagina, and could cause an allergic reaction in some girls.

Some tampons come with an applicator. An applicator is a plastic or cardboard tube that guides the tampon into the vagina. Other tampons are inserted using a finger.

Some girls find that a slender size, applicator-style tampon is easier to use when they first start their periods. An applicator with a rounded top can be especially helpful for beginners. The first time you use a tampon, try to do so on a heavier flow day. This will make the tampon slip in easier. Tampons are your personal choice. Some women find tampons more assuring that there will be no leakage as tampons absorb the blood right at its origin. 

How Do You Use Tampons?

Tampons can be worn inside vagina using an applicator or a finger. If you are using your fingers to insert the tampons then be aware of using clean hands. It is advisable to just wash hands with soap and water and not use any sanitizer or cleaning liquid to wash hands.  After washing your hands, follow the directions that come with the tampons carefully and be sure to relax.

It's very important to change tampons every few hours and that you wear the absorbency type that is right for you. Change a tampon every 4–6 hours or when it's saturated with blood.

Tampons have a string attached to one end that stays outside a girl's body. To remove the tampon, pull gently on the string until the tampon comes out. Wrap it in toilet paper and throw it in the trash.

Don't flush a tampon down the toilet. Even when the box says a tampon is flushable, tampons can still cause problems in some plumbing systems.

Because you can't see a tampon, you'll need to remember when it's time to change. If you forget to change it, you may get spotting or leakage on your underwear or clothing.

If it's time to change your tampon and you can't find the string, don't worry! The tampon is still there. Reach in with your fingers to find the string. It may take a minute to do because the string might be a bit hard to grab.

Some girls worry that tampons can get lost inside their bodies. But there is no way for this to happen. The vagina holds a tampon in place and the opening of the cervix (located at the top of the vagina) is too tiny for a tampon to get through.

It's important to change tampons often. A tampon that's left in too long won't get lost. But a girl may get a discharge, odor, or an infection. And never put a tampon in and leave it in all day or all night, even if you have a light period. Doing this puts girls at risk for a rare but very dangerous disease called toxic shock syndrome (TSS).

What Is a Menstrual Cup?

Like a tampon, a menstrual cup is inserted into the vagina. Instead of absorbing blood, the cup catches it before it flows out of the vagina. Menstrual cups are made of flexible materials, like rubber or silicone.

You can't see when the cup is full, so empty it (or, in the case of disposable cups, throw it away) several times a day. Instructions that come with the cup explain how to do this.

Because some menstrual cups look like a diaphragm, girls might wonder if a menstrual cup could be used as birth control. But a menstrual cup does not prevent pregnancy.

How Do I Decide What to Use?

Choosing a type of period protection is up to you. Some girls like tampons because they're easy to store in a purse or pocket. Tampons and cups are also helpful for girls who do sports like swimming, since you can't wear a pad in the water.

Some girls prefer pads because they're easy to use and it's easier to remember when to change them because you can see them getting soaked with blood. And some girls with heavy periods use tampons together with pads or pantiliners for added protection against leaking.

Many girls switch back and forth depending on:

  • their situation

  • where they're going to be

  • their menstrual flow

  • time of day (day or night coverage)


Most commonly, girls use tampons during the day at work with a protection of Ultrathin pads. 


Even @lizzom liners are pretty helpful with tampons. They ensure that you are leakfree during your heavy or normal days and at the same time you are pads free. (if you prefer that way.) 

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