How to Deal If Your Menstrual Cup Gets Stuck

5 min read

This article was medically fact-checked by Consultant Obstetrician and Gynaecologist Dr. Shree Datta.

Is your menstrual cup having so much fun inside your vagina that it doesn’t want to come out? This is certainly one way to look at it! In the rare cases when a menstrual cup is inserted incorrectly, such a strong suction is created that makes it a little more tricky to remove.

If you’ve found yourself in this particular situation and have tried multiple times to remove it with no success, you’re probably starting to consider moving into your bathroom to live out the rest of your days. Don’t. Here is how to calmly remove your cup when it’s being particularly stubborn (of course, after giving your hands a good wash!):

1. Relax!

Your vaginal canal is not an endless nor even a cavernous space; it’s actually pretty narrow with a comforting dead end at your cervix. Meaning? It is impossible for your cup to be swallowed up by your body or to get lost in there, so stop worrying! Once it’s in, there’s only one place for it to go – out. Chill and stop tensing those muscles – this will only make removal more difficult.

2. Try Removing As Normal

If you’re new to menstrual cups, it’s natural to jump the gun and conclude that your cup is gone, gone forever when a little difficulty arises. Honing your removal skills can take a few cycles so be patient and follow the steps in our article, “Removing Your Menstrual Cup 101.

After breaking the seal, squeeze the base of the cup and pull out gently with a firm and consistent pressure. It’s a little different from pulling out a tampon and will take about 5 seconds longer – so don’t let go!

If sitting isn’t working particularly well for your removal, you can even try hitching a leg up on the toilet or side of the tub to relax the vaginal opening.

3. Exploration Stations

Still no luck? It’s time to survey the situation up there so that you can have a better plan of attack. Wash your hands and insert one or two fingers into the vagina. Take your time to locate your cup; is it far up the vaginal canal?  Has it suctioned onto your cervix? Is it at an odd angle?

If you’re unsure about your intimate anatomy, check out our article about the female reproductive organs and how to locate your cervix to help you visualize where exactly your cup is.

4. If Necessary, Take a Break

If you’ve been rummaging around in there for a while and your vagina’s starting to feel a little stressed and swollen – take a break. No need to panic! The stress of the unknown while climbing the learning curve is something we’ve felt while using every period product for the first time. Most menstrual cups are made of medical-grade silicone, which is designed to be worn inside the body for long periods of time so a little longer won’t hurt. Take a bath to relax your muscles if they feel strained or use a cold compress on your lady bits if swollen.

5. Break’s Over – Now Break the Seal!

Now that you and your vag have composed yourselves, it’s time to remove that bad boy. Essentially, you must break the airtight seal your menstrual cup has created in order to remove it.

It may help to strip down any tight clothes you have on, so that you have space to get into a comfortable position, preferably squatting  – as this shortens the length of the vaginal canal.

Insert a clean finger and thumb into the vagina and feel for the base of the cup. Using your pelvic floor muscles, bear down so that the cup is easier to reach. Firmly squeeze the body of the cup between your finger and thumb (several times) to try break the rim’s seal and then gently pull outwards.

If this doesn’t work, run your finger up to the rim and press inwards to allow air between the cup’s rim and the surface it has suctioned onto, then pull out gently.

After successfully freeing your vagina of any stressful suction, give your cup a proper rinse to keep it clean. Don’t forget to wash your hands before and after!

The final step in this menstrual cup removal saga? Pat yourself on the back, pop the bubbly and brush up on how to insert your cup properly! Always make sure you’ve enough air above your cup when inserting and if your cup has air holes, that they are clean and have a clear airway.

For rookies and pros alike, a little how-to-use refresher is always handy, so if you’re in need of a recap, check out our Quick Start Guide to Using a Menstrual Cup.

If you have a problem with choosing your new period cup, check this out: Which menstrual cup to choose

Coming Soon
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Facts checked by:

Dr. Shree Datta

Dr. Laurie Mintz, Ph.D.

Dr. Shree Datta is a Consultant Obstetrician and Gynaecologist in London, specialising in women’s health including all menstrual problems such as fibroids and endometriosis. Dr. Shree is a keen advocate for patient choice, having written numerous articles and books to promote patient and clinician information. Her vision resonates with INTIMINA, with the common goals of demystifying periods and delivering the best possible care to her patients

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15 thoughts on “How to Deal If Your Menstrual Cup Gets Stuck

  • You truly are a life saver! I woke in the middle of the night with a full cup, needing to remove it for the first time. I tried pulling it out by the stem and I couldn’t. Turns out I wasn’t breaking the seal. That was NOT a fun activity but I am honestly so, so relieved…

  • Thank you so much. I was in full blown panic mode. I used the light/med CORA one and It took me 20 minutes to get out. Squatting and bearing down is KEY. Cant say I was relaxed though. This is SO needed, you saved me.

  • It’s currently stuck and I was wondering if I have to visit the clinic to get it removed. I get up this morning and don’t feel a thing, the stubborn pointer has gone way up into the canal. Still in panic mode. Going to give this a try.

    • Hi Anjana! I understand your panic! The key is to relax – which is obviously hard to do right now. Try putting on a chill out song, and maybe using a feminine moisturizer to help things move along more easily. And, if you do end having to go to the clinic, know that your doctor has had to deal with far more serious situations (they’ve honestly seen everything!) so really, don’t feel embarrassed about asking for assistance.

      • Thank you so much Lane. You relieved me of my worries..I thought it’s stuck..n I’ll need a lovely blog btw and you have a good sense of humour..I was a blogger too..loved reading yours.

    • I’m a bigger girl and I’m
      Trying this cup for the first time and it’s disappeared any idea on how can get it out with out haveing to go to the er so I’m not emberresed I have heavy cycles and I’m trying to figure out how to get this this thing out

      • Hello! Thank you for reaching out to INTIMINA.

        If you cannot remove your cup, we warmly recommend remaining calm. There is no urgency as our cups can be worn up to 8 hours so the key to easy removal is relaxing your body.
        In a slightly squatting position, use a series of gentle, downward pushes with your vaginal muscles to move the cup lower.
        Then grip the stem and slowly pull downwards.
        Once you can reach the base of the cup, gently squeeze the base to release the seal.
        If the seal will not release, slide your finger as high up on the body of the cup as you can and press in, this should break the seal. You can also push directly in on the rim as well.
        Continue to pull the base of the cup downwards and, when you feel that the base is almost out, angle your cup slightly to avoid any spillage.

        Kind regards,

  • SUCCESSSSS!!! Bless you for this advice! I’ve been using your products for years and every once in a few cycles, my cervix doesn’t seem to want to drop and I have to go on a fishing trip. The first time this happened, I absolutely panicked and like one of the posters above, was ready to hit the urgent care facility when I stumbled on a post that suggested an “on your back, legs up grab and go” solution that did the trick. This has worked for me the other time or two this occured. Not today though. Today was my heaviest flow day and the puppy was climbing up into my chest! I tried a bath. I tried 20 minutes on my elliptical. I tried yoga. I tried heat. I tried cold. I tried legs up. I tried legs down. I’d pretty much given up figuring the contraption would eventually blow up from the pressure of being so full, release its seal and that would be that. But just in case, I did a google search and this page showed up. Hallelujah! It’s out, emptied, all clean and back in. So thank you!

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