October 22, 2020

How to insert and remove a tampon the right way

Remember the first time you learned to ride a bike? You fell a couple of times, went towards the wrong direction, gave up riding for a while, went back to it… I mean, it wasn’t a smooth sail. But was it worth it? Definitely!!

Using tampons is exactly like that. It might be hard at first, painful even, but once you know how to insert and remove them, it will always be a walk in the park. For young girls beginning their periods, using tampons may feel like an uphill task, so we advise you to wait a couple of years before jumping on the train. However, if you’re comfortable and want to try the most convenient sanitary product for menstruating people, then read on to learn more.

What is a tampon?

Tampons were invented in 1933. They’re finger-sized absorbents made up of rayon and cotton that absorb any menstrual flow before it leaves the vaginal canal. Despite their size, they have a high absorbency rate and can collect up to 9 grams of menstrual flow.

Structurally, most tampons sit inside an applicator that is used to release the tampon into the vagina. Organic tampon applicators are made of organic material such as cardboard. The applicator is made up of a smaller inner tube and an outer barrel.

The outer barrel opens up at the top to allow the tampon to pass through into the vagina. The inner barrel/tube pushes the tampon into the furthest end of the vagina where it sits comfortably.

A string is attached to the tampon to allow for easy removal of the tampon once it’s soaked. This string is long enough to sit outside the vagina.

Some tampons come without applicators and these are awesome for saving the environment. However, for first-timers, using applicators works best.

There are different sizes of tampons depending on the absorbency rate of each. They vary from light all the way to super heavy. You will use different sizes depending on your menstrual flow, light ones for lighter days, and heavy ones for heavy days.

How to insert a tampon

Don’t overthink it. Inserting a tampon is as simple as ABC provided you know what you’re doing. If it’s your first time, make sure to use a bathroom that is not frequently used. You don’t want to be in a hurry or tense. It’s also advisable to use a tampon during your heaviest days if it’s your first time as it will be easier to insert. 

Step 1: Wash your hands

Even if your hands won’t go inside your vagina, they need to be sparkling clean. Wash them with soap and water or use a sanitizer if you can’t access water and soap. This is to ensure no bacteria or pathogens harbored on your fingers can gain access to the vagina and cause infections. It also helps to minimize the chances of toxic shock syndrome.

Step 2: Get into a comfortable position

There are several positions you can get into to make it easier to insert the tampon. You can stand with one leg placed on the toilet seat, sit on the toilet seat with your legs apart, or stand with your legs apart and bend your knees. If it's a clean bathroom in your house, you can sit on the floor with raised knees and even place a mirror in front of you to help you insert the tampon correctly.

Step 3: Unwrap the tampon

If you’ve never used a tampon before, it’s best to read instructions on the wrapper. Generally, most tampons are similar and all you have to do is twist the applicator barrel to open up the tampon, remove the bottom half to reveal the inner tube and hold it with one hand.

Step 4: Insert the tampon with an applicator

Avoid touching the top outer barrel with your fingers to avoid infection. Pull out the string and hold the end of the outer barrel with your index finger and thumb. Arch the tampon applicator towards your back because the vagina canal is angled backward.

While still holding the outer barrel with your index and thumb, use your other hand to gently and steadily push the tube applicator inside the vagina until the tampon is comfortably seated in the canal. You don’t need lubrication since your menstrual fluid lubricates the canal.

Pull out the applicator and the inner tube and dispose of it in the trash can. Do not flush it down the toilet.

The process is similar for tampons without an applicator, but now your index finger will act as the applicator.

To ensure the tampon is deeply seated inside the vagina, ensure your whole index finger enters the vagina or you push until you can’t push it any further. 

You can let the string hang out and be held in by your undies or tuck it inside the lips of your vagina if you’ll be wearing your swimming costume.

Step 5: Wash your hands

Obviously, you want to leave the room as you came, with sparkly clean hands. Wash your hands with soap and water or sanitize.

How to remove a tampon

Once your tampon is soaked enough, it’s ready to be removed. Get into the same standing or sitting position you were in when you inserted it and slowly pull out the tampon using the string at a slant angle. If it’s fully soaked it will easily slide out. (That’s why you should use a lightweight tampon for beginners.) It will be slightly larger than when you inserted it but more flexible. Wrap it up with toilet paper and flush it down the toilet. 

When to remove a tampon

You can check whether your tampon is ready to be changed by slightly pulling it and if it pulls out easily, then it’s ready. Leave it a bit longer if it feels harder to remove. A soaked tampon is more flexible and easy to remove.

The general rule of thumb is to change a tampon between 4-8 hours after inserting it according to theFood and Drug Administration. Going longer than 8 hours increases your risk of developing toxic shock syndrome. 

When fully soaked, a lightweight tampon can hold up to 3ml of blood to 12ml for a super tampon. 

Why use our organic tampons?

Our tampons are made of  GOTS-certified organic cotton grown with no chemical additives. They do not contain pesticides, chlorine, or fragrances which are major hormone disruptors. They’re packaged with biodegradable material and contain zero plastic making them environmentally friendly and sustainable.