menstrual cup odour

Menstrual Cup Odour Explained

Understanding Menstrual Cup Smell

Menstrual cup smell is a common concern amongst many cup-using menstruators. You might at times be questioning the cause of the odour that comes along with it. It is important to remember that the odour from the cup results from the menstrual blood’s interaction with the air or its surroundings. 

The smell is natural, so be assured that it is not your cup’s fault. 

With proper cleaning and cup care, you can minimize any potential smell.

Why Does My Menstrual Cup Smell Bad?

While your menstrual cup may contain a slightly foul odour, it is important to realize that periods are a natural bodily process. The blood that flows out of your vagina during periods is mixed with normal bacteria in the vagina, therefore a slight odour is natural. 

However, the persistent smell from your menstrual cup could be due to the following reasons: 

Leaving Your Cup In For Too Long

It is true that menstrual cups can hold your blood for up to 12 hours depending on your flow. However, it is recommended to remove and clean your cup at regular intervals. Keeping your cup in for too long might cause a foul smell. 

Incorrect Cleaning Techniques 

Cleaning your cup is an essential part of your period care routine. It is crucial to clean your cup properly and correctly. Always use mild soap, menstrual cup wash, or simply water to clean your cup, in order to minimize the chances of soap residue on your cup. This residue can further combine with bacteria to cause your cup to smell. 

Improper Sterilization 

Menstrual cup sterilization is one of the most important things to keep in mind while using a period cup. Avoid common sterilization mistakes as it is of high priority that you sterilize your cup properly. It keeps away any foul smell and bacteria. You can choose to use a sterilizing container, or a steam sterilizer, or just boil your cup for 3-5 minutes in order to sterilize it.

Having explored the reasons for your menstrual cup’s smell, let us explore possible areas and ways to improve your menstrual cup hygiene. 

How To Maintain Cup Hygiene? 

A menstrual cup is made of medical-grade silicone and has no foul smell of its own. However, to keep your cup fresh and clean it is important to maintain good cup hygiene. 

Here are a few tips to keep the menstrual cup smell away: 

Sterilize Well And Correctly 

It is crucial to sterilize your cup correctly, before and after your periods. It keeps away germs and bacteria, making it safe and clean to use.

Wash Your Cup Thoroughly 

Make sure to wash your cup thoroughly with every removal and insertion. Do not use harsh chemical washes, rather stick to mild unscented soap, menstrual cup wash, or warm water. 

Soaking Solution 

If a bad smell persists, try soaking your cup in a specialised cup cleaning solution. This step will help you to eliminate any existing bacteria. 

These simple steps can help you get rid of the foul smell from your cup. If the smell seems unnatural it is always recommended to visit a healthcare expect to check for any underlying issues. 


Menstrual cup smell is not a permanent problem. With proper hygiene practices and menstrual cup care, you can eliminate any unpleasant smell with ease. If your menstrual cup smells bad, a few simple steps will help you get rid of it. Lastly, it is crucial to note that inculcating good hygiene practices will help you stay away from any disease-causing bacteria and keep you healthy. To know more visit the Pee Safe website. 


✍️ This article was curated by Manisha Shah

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