Inserting a menstrual cup for the very first time can seem like a daunting task: it is larger than a tampon, and you may be wondering how best to fit it into your vagina.
However, please don’t be afraid — because the Asan cup is made from soft, flexible silicone, it can be folded into a small shape and inserted with ease.
Below you will find everything you need to know about how to fold a menstrual cup, including detailed descriptions of three different folds: the C-Fold, the Punch Down Fold and the 7-Fold. We will explain which fold might work best for you given your body type and previous experience with menstrual cups and other period products.
Name: The “C-Fold”
How it works: Simply flatten your cup and then fold it in half. The rim should form the shape of a ‘C’ or a ‘U’. Gently insert the cup into your vagina while holding the fold in place.
Why we love it: The C-Fold is the most effective fold for popping open your Asan cup. Once the cup is inside your vagina, simply let go and it should pop open itself and create a perfect seal. If you use the C-Fold, you shouldn't need to adjust your cup much once you insert it.
The downside: Using the C-Fold means that the rim of your cup has a larger diameter than other folds. This can be intimidating for first-time users, especially those who have never inserted something into their vagina before.
the punch-down fold
Name: The “Punch-Down Fold”
How it works: To use the punch down method use your index finger to punch down on one side of the cup, so that the rim folds down towards the base. Hold the cup firmly in this shape while you insert.
Why we love it: The Punch-Down Fold creates a small insertion point, making it easy to guide into the vagina. The punch-down fold is a popular choice as the fold remains in place while you slowly insert the cup, making it the best menstrual cup fold for beginners.
The downside: Some users find that when using the punch-down fold, the cup may need a little adjustment to pop open perfectly. Once inserted, prod the cup and tug gently on the removal ring to make sure that it opens up completely and creates a tight seal.
Name: The “7-Fold”
How it works: Flatten then cup, and then fold the right corner diagonally downwards so that the rim forms a "7" shape. Hold the cup firmly in this shape while you insert.
Why we love it: This simple fold in the shape of the number 7 creates a small insertion point. Many of our younger users report that the 7-fold works best for them as it is the smallest menstrual cup fold.
The downside: Similar to using the punch-down fold, you will need to double check that the cup has opened up correctly. Prod the cup and tug gently on the ring to make sure that it opens up completely and creates a tight seal.
It is completely normal to not get the insertion right when trying the different folds for the first time. While inserting, remember to angle the cup towards the back and not upwards. Be patient with yourself and remember, practice makes perfect!
frequently asked questions
Which is the best menstrual cup fold for beginners?
If you have never inserted anything into your vagina, we suggest starting out with the Punch-Down method as this creates the smallest insertion point. Remember to lubricate your cup with clean water and angle it towards your tailbone.
Another great way to fold your menstrual cup as a beginner is to try the 7-Fold – many of our teen users like this one as it is easy to create the “7” shape and it glides easily into the vagina.
The C-fold is a good fold for users who are comfortable with insertion.
Which is the best way to fold a menstrual cup for experienced users?
There is no “best” fold for experienced menstrual cup users – you need to experiment and try what’s best for you. Some users stick with the Punch Down Fold and the 7-Fold; others eventually switch to the C Fold once they are comfortable with insertion.
What are the other types of menstrual cup folds?
If you scour the internet, there are all kinds of menstrual cup folds: Origami Fold, S Fold, M, E or Squiggle fold, Triangle fold, Diamond Fold and even “Labia Fold” – the list never ends!
The truth is that at Asan, we like to keep things simple (the word Asan means easy, after all). While the Origami Fold, Squiggle Fold and Labia Fold may sound fun to try, they are in practice quite complicated (we tried folding our cup into the shape of an E and not one person on our team could do it!)
There’s no need to try a million different fold methods – the three folds in our menstrual cup folds guide (C Fold, Punch Down Fold and 7-Fold) are all easy to understand. All of our users are comfortable with at least one, if not more, of these folds.
When do I let go of the fold?
Keep your cup folded until it is completely inside your vagina. This is important, as if you let go too early, the cup can pop open while it is half outside you – which can cause discomfort. Only once your cup is completely inside should you let go.
I think my cup is still folded inside me.
Once you insert your cup, gently prod it or run a finger around the bottom. If it has opened up, you will feel some resistance. If it is still folded, the best thing to do is remove your cup and insert it again.
If you continue to face this problem, maybe you need to try one of the different folds mentioned above in our menstrual cup folds guide. For example, if you’re trying the 7-Fold and it just won’t pop open, it may be time to switch to the C-Fold.
I’ve tried all the folds and still can’t insert my menstrual cup.
Please don’t worry – it takes time to adjust to folding, inserting and getting comfortable with your menstrual cup. This is true for teenagers folding their menstrual cup for the first time, as well as older users.
If you’ve tried several times with no luck, it may be the case that you are experiencing vaginismus or another condition that makes insertion difficult. It’s important not to force the cup in if you feel any pain. Please contact our team and we will do our very best to help you.