Your Pussy, Your Period: A New Age Guide To Menstruation

Once a month for about 3-5 days the floodgates of your uterus open up, expelling what seems like a never-ending flow of nastiness. Most people just plug it up with a tampon and go on about their day. Some people don’t ever give a second thought to their menstruation unless something is going wrong, but you really should. A period may mean the end of a sentence but it doesn’t have to be the end of your life. So, let’s take a new look at the great big world of menstruation.

Before we get to the meat of the discussion, we need to review and make sure we know what’s happening with your cooch.


There are actually 2 things that happen during your period; menstruation, which involves the uterus, and ovulation, which involves the ovaries. Menstruation happens in 3 basic steps over 28 days:

    * Menstruation (days 1-4): This step is where your uterus contracts to loosen and expel the old lining of the uterus (endometrium) and the unfertilized eggs, leaving behind an all-new lining.

    * Proliferation (days 5-13 & 14-26): The new lining swells with blood and nutrients, in preparation for the possibly fertilized egg to be implanted. Days 14-26 are spent just waiting around.

    * Ischemic (days 27-28): This is a resting period between each cycle

Ovulation also occurs in 3 steps. 

    * Follicular (days 1-13): The hormone FSH (follicle stimulating hormone) does what it says and stimulates the movement of the follicles in the ovaries and fallopian tubes to prepare for ovulation.

    * Ovulatory (days 14-16): The skin of the ovary (corpus lutem) softens and one egg (ovum) releases into the fallopian tubes to wait for sperm to fertilize it. If it is not fertilized it will dissolve in the fallopian tube.

    * Luteal (days 17-28): The skin of the ovary re-hardens thanks to the hormone progesterone.

Eventually the progesterone production will wane and cause the entire menstrual cycle to start all over again.

Now that we have that down, let’s talk about hygiene. To keep the expelled endometrium from staining clothing and allowing for an active lifestyle during your menstruation, several devices can help you.

Tampons are little thumb sized pieces of cotton or rayon that’s super compressed and super absorbent. Most tampons come in an applicator to help you insert it into your vagina. Many women find tampons uncomfortable because they don’t like having something in their vaginas when they are not aroused. Inserting the tampon is the part where most women have trouble, if you do use these tips to try to make the experience more pleasurable.

  • Use lube on the applicator to help it slide in with less irritation.
  • Switch to a brand of tampons that uses a plastic applicator.
  • Insert while standing up, with one leg propped.
  • Use your fingers to open the vaginal lips to decrease the amount of dry skin contact.
  • Change your tampon every 4-6 hours, and never reuse one.
  • Keep the tampon away from the cervix, friction is not your friend and you do not want it to get so far up it gets stuck.
  • Wearing a panty liner can help as a backup on heavy or extremely active days.

Removing a tampon is actually very easy. Tampons have a tail that hangs outside the vagina and gives you something to pull on when removing. Do not flush your tampons as they may swell in the pipes and cause a clog. Just wrap your old tampon in some toilet paper and throw it in the trash.

Maxi pads are, as their name implies, pads of varying sizes and thicknesses that you attach to your underwear to catch the menstrual debris. These require the least effort to use. Some drawbacks of pads are that they are bulky which can make them uncomfortable to sit on or they may shift throughout the day causing leakage. If you have a sensitive or small vaginal canal pads may be a better choice for you. When using pads, try to buy ones with adhesive wings for better stability during active movement, wearing a snugger fitting pair of full coverage undies will help keep them from moving. Make sure to change your pad every 4-6 hours or as needed and never reuse a maxi pad.

When removing a pad, be sure not to squeeze it. That could end in a bloody mess. You can wrap the old pad in the wrapper of the new one or in some toilet paper and throw it in the trash.

Your third choice is a newer device called menstrual cups. These little silicone or rubber cups are no bigger than the tip of a banana. This option requires maintenance every 6-12 hours and is the only one that you can reuse. These $30 cups are rated for use of up to 10 years, which will save you a ton of money and will be very environmentally friendly.

You use a menstrual cup by folding it in half and inserting it into you vagina as close to the cervix as possible. It will stay there and act as both a stopper and a cup. Using a dab of lubricant on the outside of cup can help with insertion. If you swap out cups, try running warm water over the new one just before you put it in to get it up to body temperature.

You will want to remove these while sitting on the toilet, there may be some spillage. To remove simply reach into the vagina, lube on your fingers may help, and pull it out slowly by its nub on the bottom of the cup. Make sure you use soap and water to clean it, and make sure you rinse it well so that you aren’t getting soap in your vagina, which may cause irritation.

Here is a video women talking about the menstrual cup.

CUP U. from vanessa tolkin meyer on Vimeo.


During your period, your vagina may get all out of wack. You can expect your pH balance to be off, there may be some itching, and sometimes a bit of a discharge. All of this can be normal, and should return to normal once your period has ended. If you think that your cooter is doing something that it shouldn’t be, make an appointment to see you gynecologist.

On the days where you are not on your period, it is perfectly fine to go a day or two without a shower. During your period, you are going to want to keep up on your daily hygiene. If you do nothing else, make sure to cleanse you vagina with a baby wipe to remove any gunk that might be caught in the folds of your labia.

As I mentioned with all of your hygiene options you need to change them/refresh them at regular intervals. If you do not change out your tampon or pad, toxic shock syndrome may develop from a backup of rotting menstrual blood and chemicals from the tampons, not good. The cup is the only one of the three, which is not connected with TSS and is specially made stop bacteria from growing on it or penetrating it.

Women with HIV/AIDS, hepatitis, herpes or any other STI should be extremely careful during their cycle. You are dealing with many bodily fluids full of viruses that are just dying to spread the love around. If you have HIV, hepatitis, or herpes using a cup may have increased risk to other patrons in public facilities, you should carry portable Clorox wipes to clean the toilet seat after you use it. Even if you cannot see any blood or fluids, they may be there in small amount invisible to the eye but very visible to an open orifice or sore on a unsuspecting bathroom user’s body.

Women with acute STIs like gonorrhea, syphilis or chlamydia, you need to take precautions as well. The bacterium that causes these are just as lonely as the viruses that cause HIV, hepatitis and herpes. If you know you have any STIs, carry baggies in your purse to wrap your disposable products in before trashing them. Save someone on the custodial staff from unknowingly being exposed to your used tampon or pad.

There are many choices today for your vaginal health. If you do some trial and error using the tips I have provided you can easily make menstruation much less of an exclamation point.



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