Skip

The Case of the Missing o.b. Tampons
January 27, 2011 9:54 AM   Subscribe

Over Christmas, Johnson & Johnson decided to stop carrying their popular brand of o.b. tampons. This elicited an immediate and frenzied response from women who used the product. Told that their tampon of choice was permanently discontinued, ladies took to eBay and other outlets to get the last few boxes. In a turnaround, however, J&J is now claiming they were experiencing a "temporary supply interruption". To everyone's relief, the product will soon be back in stores.
posted by reenum (83 comments total) 5 users marked this as a favorite

 
DIVA CUP
DIVA CUP
RAH RAH RAH

...because nothing elicits panic like being in some godforsaken place and time where one's Menstrual Thing of Choice is unavailable. And I'll NEVER WORRY ABOUT IT AGAIN.

You can pry that thing out of my cold, dead, postmenopausal hands.
posted by Madamina at 10:00 AM on January 27, 2011 [26 favorites]


Spongeworthy!
posted by nathancaswell at 10:03 AM on January 27, 2011 [6 favorites]


Are they still available in Canada by any chance? Cross border arbitrage is good business :)
posted by Chuckles at 10:03 AM on January 27, 2011


They must have pulled some strings.
posted by I'm Doing the Dishes at 10:05 AM on January 27, 2011 [76 favorites]


So supply chain is back to heavy flow?
posted by acheekymonkey at 10:07 AM on January 27, 2011 [5 favorites]


Johnson & Johnson has been having a hell of a time lately. Recalls for Benadryl, Motrin, Rolaids, Mylanta, Tylenol... I don't know what's going on at that company, but they have had a really bad year or so.
posted by hippybear at 10:08 AM on January 27, 2011


There is a "natural organic" or whatever brand that's nearly identical, though slightly more expensive. I started using non-applicator tampons when I lived in Europe and they didn't really sell applicator tampons there anyway. It never bothered me until I moved back to the US and kept using them and realized with horror the big difference- women's bathroom stalls in Europe have their own sinks so you can easily wash up before insertion. In the US we have no such dignity (except in some nice hotels and whatnot), so it's much easier to use the applicator than to remember to wash up before entering the stall.
posted by melissam at 10:12 AM on January 27, 2011


A scene from Honeydew's house, near the end of 2010:

[HONEYDEW enters the house frantically]
Darling Girlfriend: Is something wrong?
Honeydew: THERE'S BEEN A CATASTROPHE.
[HONEYDEW runs to the bathroom and cries out in agony]
DGF: What's going on?
Honeydew: WE DIDN'T STOCKPILE! OH GOD I'M DOOMED.
DGF: Baby, we... Stockpile?
Honeydew: IT'S ALL OVER! OVER!
DGF: Is there a hurricane coming?
Honeydew: WORSE THAN THAT!
DGF: I knew this day would come! Is there gas in the car? Is the water still running? See, this is why we need a shotgun!
Honeydew: THE HORROR! THE HO - what?
DGF: A shotgun!
Honeydew: How will that help the OB tampon shortage?
[very long silence]
DGF: I'm going to go back to playing Fallout now.
Honeydew: WHY GOD WHY?
posted by honeydew at 10:16 AM on January 27, 2011 [22 favorites]


I think the popularity (or lack thereof) of these type of tampons is related to many women's discomfort with their bodies. I seem to recall thinking that o.b. tampons were kind of weird when I was younger. Anyway, yeah, the Divacup. Join their facebook group. Tell everyone. It is the shit.
posted by ghost dance beat at 10:17 AM on January 27, 2011 [2 favorites]


Is this where I insert my dry, witty comment?
posted by orme at 10:18 AM on January 27, 2011 [1 favorite]


Your favorite menstrual-blood accumulator sucks.
posted by merelyglib at 10:26 AM on January 27, 2011 [10 favorites]


This seems to be a popular method of marketing declining brands these days. Pull it off the market for a bit, wait for the uproar and see a spike in sales.
posted by svenni at 10:27 AM on January 27, 2011 [2 favorites]


Either way, this will end in blood.
posted by CynicalKnight at 10:30 AM on January 27, 2011 [9 favorites]


The girlfriend found a few packs on the back of a shelf at a nearby Target last weekend. We couldn't decide if it was an oversight or if they were starting to receive new stock. At any rate, she took every damned box off that shelf and now our toiletry cabinet under the bathroom sink is overflowing with tampons.
posted by backseatpilot at 10:32 AM on January 27, 2011


Just mention feminine hygiene and you can Rely on everyone to Always don redface and put on a menstrual show. If I could only just sprout wings and fly away before these puns cramp my style....
posted by Oriole Adams at 10:39 AM on January 27, 2011 [4 favorites]


They mentioned this last week on the radio in one of those weird news from around the country segments. Someone called in and said that J&J had had to temporarily close one of their facilities due to some violations. I don't remember what kind of violations he said, however, but maybe there's some truth to that?
posted by educatedslacker at 10:40 AM on January 27, 2011 [1 favorite]


J&J had had to temporarily close one of their facilities due to some violations.

Little mice in the plant were using them as skiis.
posted by stormpooper at 10:44 AM on January 27, 2011 [6 favorites]


I read about this on Ask Metafilter a couple of weeks ago and went on a six-store drugstore shopping frenzy on my way home from work that day. I'm set for a couple of years now.

It is so odd to me the way Johnson & Johnson has been so close-mouthed about this whole thing. Really poor customer service.
posted by something something at 10:46 AM on January 27, 2011 [1 favorite]


There is a "natural organic" or whatever brand that's nearly identical, though slightly more expensive.

That would be Natracare, my tampon of choice. Would love to try the Divacup, but seriously, how exactly does that work in a public bathroom (which I use frequently)?
posted by Go Banana at 10:46 AM on January 27, 2011 [1 favorite]


Shocking! Toxically shocking!
posted by davelog at 10:46 AM on January 27, 2011


The AskMe that had mefite women scouring drug stores and shipping boxes of tampons to other mefites.
posted by gingerbeer at 10:53 AM on January 27, 2011 [2 favorites]


Another rah rah rah for the Diva cup, although I do have some old ob's stockpiled, too...hmmm, too bad they're coming back, I could have made a FORTUNE.
posted by bitter-girl.com at 10:54 AM on January 27, 2011


I think the popularity (or lack thereof) of these type of tampons is related to many women's discomfort with their bodies.

Do you? I think that's reading a lot into how some women put in a tampon.
posted by gladly at 11:04 AM on January 27, 2011 [3 favorites]


Would love to try the Divacup, but seriously, how exactly does that work in a public bathroom (which I use frequently)?

YFloMV, but I find that I don't have to empty it so often as to need to empty it in public. On my heaviest day, I could empty it in the morning as I leave for work, when I get home from work, and before I go to bed. I actually lost mine flying home in December, and have had to deal with two cycles of not having it after using it exclusively for years, and boy, are tampons a miserable replacement.
posted by ThePinkSuperhero at 11:06 AM on January 27, 2011 [2 favorites]


Diva cup all the way. Glad to hear the word is out. Women spend far too much on disposables while generating a horrific pile of waste. Re-usables are the way to go unless circumstances render same inconvenient (as for Go Banana above).
Isn't choice a lovely thing?
posted by kinnakeet at 11:09 AM on January 27, 2011


Are they still available in Canada by any chance? Cross border arbitrage is good business :)

I obviously don't shop for them, but judging by what's stashed in the cabinet under my bathroom sink they're still available in Canada.
posted by Hoopo at 11:11 AM on January 27, 2011


(I had a witty message I was going to post here that might have been quasi-misogynistic, but my iPhone ate it. I'll take it as a sign from heaven that I probably didn't need to share it.)
posted by crunchland at 11:14 AM on January 27, 2011 [2 favorites]


where does one buy that app, and can it be gifted to others?
posted by pineapple at 11:26 AM on January 27, 2011 [22 favorites]


I feel ridiculous even as I'm typing, but this is one of the best things I've heard today. All my local drugstores have removed the space where the ob boxes used to live, so I thought maybe never. Issues of anatomy make the DivaCup not an option, and looking for an alternative has made me quite angry about the amount of plastic (wrappers and applicators) involved in non-ob brands.
posted by catlet at 11:35 AM on January 27, 2011


Feminine hygiene!
posted by TedW at 11:47 AM on January 27, 2011


It is so odd to me the way Johnson & Johnson has been so close-mouthed about this whole thing. Really poor customer service.

It's not that odd if you follow J&J much. For instance, they're being sued by the state of Oregon for doing a "phantom recall" of Motrin. (A phantom recall is when a company doesn't actually issue a recall, but instead sends out contractors to buy the stock off the shelves, thus avoiding notifying the public of the faulty product and leaving it on shelves and in people's homes.)

They're really not a company which communicates well about its problems to their customers at all.
posted by hippybear at 12:00 PM on January 27, 2011 [3 favorites]


I'm also all about the menstrual cup but am slightly baffled by the op. Is there only one brand of non-applicator tampon in the US?

BTW: catlet meet Jam Sponge.
posted by freya_lamb at 12:01 PM on January 27, 2011


Re-usables are the way to go

Even better, although a bit more cumbersome, would be a strap-on autoloader which automatically dispensed menstrual flow into sealed plastic spheres which could then be quickly chambered into a small concealed paintgun discreetly holstered under one's left breast (or vice versa for the lefties).

Technically, creeps won't be getting what they asked for, but they'll certainly be getting what they need.
posted by CynicalKnight at 12:02 PM on January 27, 2011 [7 favorites]


The only solution is to get pregnant, right now!

Seriously, I'm used to European standards in feminine hygiene and it's ridiculous what American women have to put up with. "Applicators" - how the fuck do they work? Why do you need them? And the "organic" tampons from TJ's I tried felt like I had made them myself from paper towels. Who buys this stuff?

In Germany, o.b. actually introduced a new tampon style two years ago or so - I was sceptical when I first bought them (yeah, sure, "tampon innovation"!), but they really are a vast improvement over the old style tampon: o.b. Flexia with Soft Folds. Try them some time when you can get them. I have never seen them in the U.S., sadly.
posted by The Toad at 12:04 PM on January 27, 2011


Are they still available in Canada by any chance? Cross border arbitrage is good business :)

They vanished in Canada months ago. Thanks goodness I keep finding more of them in the pockets of my old purses.
posted by L'Estrange Fruit at 12:06 PM on January 27, 2011 [2 favorites]


I would have been heartbroken about the o.b. scarcity had my wonderful Mirena IUD not taken away my period for the past 4 years.

Of course, my uterus will probably explode or mutate into some Cronenbergian radioactive arachnoid creature in the near future, but sometimes I think it's a fair trade-off.
posted by bibliowench at 12:08 PM on January 27, 2011 [2 favorites]


Incidentally, it predates Christmas; the first Jezebel article about it is dated Nov. 4 and I know I couldn't find any in stores in my town at that time.
posted by L'Estrange Fruit at 12:11 PM on January 27, 2011


If you're in public with a Diva Cup, just dump it out in the toilet and then wipe it with TP before putting it back in. It's nonporous, so you can get nearly all of the fluid off. You don't need to thoroughly rinse it every single time.

When I did use tampons (such a long, long time ago...), I used Playtex. They seemed to have more of a sort of umbrella-like unfurling (like the o.b., I gather) than Tampax, which was like just shoving a pretzel rod up there for all the good it did.
posted by Madamina at 12:14 PM on January 27, 2011 [1 favorite]


I've been following this mysterious recall with great interest. The closest I've seen as an explanation is that J&J was "refusing to heed customer complaints."

Complaints about what, I haven't been able to determine. I'd very much like to know.

(THIS is the kind of stuff I want to see Wikileaked.)
posted by ErikaB at 12:15 PM on January 27, 2011 [1 favorite]


o.b. Flexia with Soft Folds

They're available on amazon.de but my german is too rubbishy to figure out if they ship overseas or not.
posted by elizardbits at 12:17 PM on January 27, 2011


elizardbits, they don't...or at least this seller (Scheuer E aktiv) doesn't.
posted by The Toad at 12:19 PM on January 27, 2011


They discontinued only the Ultra absorbency line, not the entire o.b. line - as far as I'm aware that was always their statement on the issue. The run on all o.b. tampons probably came from some supply-chain fuckup combined with internet-fueled panic/hoarding of the entire brand instead of the one discontinued type.

I am sure they had some sort of quality control issue which they caught and are not disclosing...sort of a pre-emptive recall...they wouldn't want people to panic and stop buying it. Meanwhile, this shortage seems to have galvanized women to buy even more o.b.! And rightly so, they're great.
posted by SassHat at 12:27 PM on January 27, 2011


I use these that seem similar.
posted by sweetmarie at 12:41 PM on January 27, 2011


They vanished in Canada months ago. Thanks goodness I keep finding more of them in the pockets of my old purses.

After all the internet furor I decided while I was last out shopping to try to stockpile. I found shelves full in Toronto. I bought several boxes, just in case, but I haven't noticed any shortage.
posted by If only I had a penguin... at 12:56 PM on January 27, 2011


I found shelves full in Toronto.

Montreal has been a wasteland for OB for the last couple of months. Clearly Toronto is once again up to its old anti-Montreal tricks. /shakes fist
posted by L'Estrange Fruit at 1:00 PM on January 27, 2011


Sitting here impatiently waiting for menopause to finally hit. Grr.
posted by St. Alia of the Bunnies at 1:07 PM on January 27, 2011 [1 favorite]


Thank god I had my uterus yanked out last year. I was very brand loyal to OB, and I would have raged at having had my favorite period product taken away from me. As it was, I ended up giving a friend a huge stockpile of my leftovers (no more periods! woo!). Sadly, I don't think she realized just how precious those OBs were. She got herself knocked up a few months later and probably didn't even use them all yet.
posted by msali at 1:17 PM on January 27, 2011


Ignorant male question: what's so special about o.b.? Isn't it essentially the same as every other tampon?
posted by five fresh fish at 1:20 PM on January 27, 2011


I'll always have a deep fondness for OBs. They were the first tampon I successfully used. From age 11, when I first got my period, to 18, when I had tampon success, I tried over and over again with applicator tampons and just could not figure it out. I was all, like, point it where? How?! Then I used an OB and was able to figure out through feeling around the direction I needed to push it up.

I was on cloud 9 that day. I remember going to a movie with some (male, gay, 16 and easily squicked about such things) friends and not being able to keep my trap shut about how awesome it was that I was finally wearing a tampon. A few months later, still 18 and still a virgin, I went to the gyno and, when she went to find her smallest-sized speculum, asked me if I'd had trouble putting in tampons. I replied that yes, it took my awhile, but I finally figured it out. Yay OBs! Seriously, it was a revolution after wearing pads for all of my adolescence.

Still, I'm a DivaCup girl now. The first time I used the cup, I had the same sort of feeling of revolution. Like, oh man, this is so much better.

Would love to try the Divacup, but seriously, how exactly does that work in a public bathroom (which I use frequently)?

I only empty my cup twice a day when my flow is heavy--worst case scenario, if I feel I need it, I bring a bottle of water into the bathroom to clean it out, then wipe dry. But as Madamina says, it's not really necessary.
posted by PhoBWanKenobi at 1:21 PM on January 27, 2011 [2 favorites]


Ignorant male question: what's so special about o.b.? Isn't it essentially the same as every other tampon?

Other tampons use long, stick-shaped plastic or cardboard applicators that you insert first, then a plunger mechanism to insert the tampon itself. OBs have no applicator. You wriggle around the cord to make a little indentation for your finger, then push it up manually. It seems like a small difference, but it's loads better and leads to less waste.
posted by PhoBWanKenobi at 1:23 PM on January 27, 2011 [1 favorite]


L'Estrange Fruit -- I found full shelves at the Pharmaprix in Alexis Nihon. I bought a few boxes, just in case, but I use a Diva Cup, so they're just sitting in my bathroom cabinet, waiting for the apocalypse.
posted by OLechat at 1:23 PM on January 27, 2011


I just purchased a DivaCup, something I've been meaning to do but haven't, just because I didnt want to lay out thirty or forty bucks at a go. Stupid, really.

I hadnt heard about this o.b. "tampocalypse" (oh, jeez) for two reasons - I had a couple-three boxes of o.b. tampons left and I have been substituting Seventh Generation applicator-free in place of o.b. for a few months. This, however, explains to me why o.b. was not available in any of the stores I went to the other day. If it hadn't been for this post, I'd never have known.

For those who are looking for alternatives, NatraCare and Seventh Generation make ecofriendly applicator-free tampons, so they continue to be available for order online. In my experience, the Seventh Generation products aren't quite as good as the o.b.s - you have to change more frequently and they're not quite as absorbent, but this o.b. thing pisses me off so bad I just wrote Johnson & Johnson a PMSey letter and vowed never to darken their door again.

Hopefully, since the DivaCup seems to be so universally loved by the women who use it, I'll never have to even think about going back to any tampons at all, and that would be a good thing.

As far as applicators, I never understood how in the hell anyone coudl use those damn things. I understand even less how any person could be so afraid of their own body that they'd consider any part of it too gross to touch. That's just wacky to me.

The Lunapads and DivaCup websites are a little bit too squeamish and giggly and girly-girl for me ("How has DivaCup "empowered" you?" Seriously? They empower me to want to shake you until your teeth chatter just to snap you out of that idiocy) but hey, if it works and it's good for the planet AND it gives big corporate a big old bloody middle finger, I'm all for it.

Thanks, Metafilter. Next time I'm bleeding from the crotchal region, bloated like some pasty whale, feeling like my ovaries are trying to escape out my rectum, Mission Impossible style, and wanting to tear someone's head off for breathing too loudly, I'll be thinking of you.
posted by perilous at 1:24 PM on January 27, 2011 [3 favorites]


Fellas: The other benefit to OB is that they expand all around their diameter and turn into plump cylinders, unlike Tampax, which turn into long rectangles. A plump cylinder is much more effective than a long rectangle for stopping leaks. (WTF, you ask? Why do Tampax elongate? We don't know either. We do know that they leak, and the applicator is wasteful, and too big to put in your jeans pocket, and the paper wrapping gets icky in your purse).

Females: Natracare no-applicator 'pons are a bit pricier but they also turn into plump cylinders, with the added benefit of being made of cotton/peroxide instead of ?/? (rayon/chlorine?)
posted by pseudostrabismus at 1:37 PM on January 27, 2011 [2 favorites]


L'Estrange Fruit -- I found full shelves at the Pharmaprix in Alexis Nihon.

THANK YOU! And it's even on my way home, yippeeee!
Maybe they're making a comeback - last times I looked were November/December.
posted by L'Estrange Fruit at 1:41 PM on January 27, 2011


For those wondering "what's so damned special about a wad of cotton?"...

1. O.B.s were/are very, very well-made - sort of rolled and crimped and engineered, rather than just consisting of a wad of fluffy cotton.
2. O.B.s expanded width-wise, not length-wise... truly the ideal behavior for something staunching the flow of liquid from a flexible tube.
3. They're TEENY... you can fit two in a pocket and still have room for a pack of Fruit Stripe! Applicator tampons seem like goddamned cardboard cannons by comparison.
4. Tampons are kind of unique in that they spend more time in your body each month than ANY OTHER personal hygiene product (assuming you don't have an ostomy or somethin'). It can lead to becoming rather attached to your product of choice. As I told my boyfriend: "I've been using these for SEVENTEEN YEARS! If the hospital ran out of A- blood, you wouldn't say, 'Oh, just squirt some B+ in there!', would you?!" (I was a bit... agitated.)

Thanks again to Tha Green's O.B. contingent, ESPECIALLY Tristeza, who shipped me a whole crate o' the Super Plus ones. You ladies ROCK.
posted by julthumbscrew at 2:03 PM on January 27, 2011 [3 favorites]


They have also returned to the shelves of San Francisco! Or at least to the Walgreen's by my work.
posted by grapesaresour at 3:01 PM on January 27, 2011


> I think the popularity (or lack thereof) of these type of tampons is related to many women's discomfort with their bodies.

I'm confused. If ob is my preferred brand, does that mean I am or am not unnerved by my body?
posted by The corpse in the library at 4:41 PM on January 27, 2011


I understand even less how any person could be so afraid of their own body that they'd consider any part of it too gross to touch.

Ugh. Mind your own vagina.
posted by two or three cars parked under the stars at 5:06 PM on January 27, 2011 [6 favorites]


Returning to the shelf, only ultra was ever a real issue... It is a good thing I stick to reselling stuff I know about :)
posted by Chuckles at 5:07 PM on January 27, 2011


They discontinued only the Ultra absorbency line, not the entire o.b. line - as far as I'm aware that was always their statement on the issue.

yeah, but -- that's the fucking size I *needed*! Anyway, to hell with those bitchiz. I got a Diva.
posted by toodleydoodley at 5:11 PM on January 27, 2011


THE ULTRA ARE STILL GONE. GONE FOREVER. FUCK YOU JOHNSON AND JOHNSON.

Seriously, this bites. The only ultra-absorbency tampons on the market in the US are the craptacular Playtex Glide and the even more craptiferous Tampax Pearl. Both of which, as others have explained already, elongate as well as expanding vertically, which is less comfortable.

FUCK YOU JOHNSON AND JOHNSON. I am 46 years old, and like many women in the peri-menopausal stage of life, my body stages a monthly "UTERUS CLOSING EVERYTHING MUST GO" torrent. I needed those goddamned Ultra tampons.

And, like other women who are on Team Tippy Cervix, the Diva Cup is pretty much one big owie. Glad Rags, my ass. If we can send humans to the moon, we should be able to have a comfortable ultra-absorbency tampon without a useless wodge of plastic as an applicator, shouldn't we?
posted by Sidhedevil at 5:51 PM on January 27, 2011 [4 favorites]


Just a quick note that the DivaCup is one specific cup that is commercially available. There are others, and they vary in length, width, material, etc. This forum gives the rundown on the differences between cups. I didn't do nearly enough research before buying a DivaCup, and it ended up not being a good fit for me. I should have gone with something else. I'm all for reusable solutions, but just know that the DivaCup isn't the only one out there.
posted by LiliaNic at 6:11 PM on January 27, 2011 [1 favorite]


If you're in public with a Diva Cup, just dump it out in the toilet and then wipe it with TP before putting it back in. It's nonporous, so you can get nearly all of the fluid off. You don't need to thoroughly rinse it every single time.

There's even better ways to cleanse it, but uh... If you're grossed out by DivaCup usage in itself, you probably aren't ready for what that entails. Plus, it requires a little more bladder control.
(wash your hands after, though)


I love my Divacup. I was kinda mad when I went on BC because I had almost no need for it. Next time, it'll be back to the emptying once per hour routine, though 8D
posted by rubah at 6:17 PM on January 27, 2011


I would just like to say that I have learned more about tampons and women's opinions of them in this thread than I have in my entire 40+ years of life before now. That is all.
posted by hippybear at 7:02 PM on January 27, 2011 [2 favorites]


As far as applicators, I never understood how in the hell anyone coudl use those damn things. I understand even less how any person could be so afraid of their own body that they'd consider any part of it too gross to touch. That's just wacky to me.

I've tried to use O.B. many, many, MANY times. Tried. Oh, how I've tried. But, my cervix is in a very odd place and I can't really shove a tampon in forcefully enough to get it in a place where it will *stay* and then it just gets pushed OUT and... ouch.

(See also: the Diva Cup, the Nuva Ring. My cervix has some emminent domain issues.)

So, yeah, for some women the applicator is an actual necessity. I have absolutely no issue touching my vagina. It's not a cleanliness thing. It's a "need rocket booster to bypass cervix" thing.

Just sayin' - ladyparts and their needs vary greatly.
posted by sonika at 7:06 PM on January 27, 2011 [6 favorites]


Would love to try the Divacup, but seriously, how exactly does that work in a public bathroom (which I use frequently)?

Wash hands before entering stall. Remove Divacup, dump blood in toilet, reinsert Divacup. Dab fingers with toilet paper if necessary to avoid smearing blood on your waistband. Exit stall, wash hands.

Madamina, I'm curious, why do you wipe it out?
posted by desuetude at 7:47 PM on January 27, 2011


Because sometimes it's a little drippy if I don't, and sometimes I want to make sure to clean the pinholes near the edges -- they aid in suction to keep it in place.
posted by Madamina at 8:06 PM on January 27, 2011


TMI warning:

o.b. are so comfortable I've accidentally inserted a second one, on more than one occasion.

I'm probably a recall waiting to happen.
posted by Ambrosia Voyeur at 8:14 PM on January 27, 2011 [4 favorites]


Tell me I'm not the only one here whose fingers are too short to function as an applicator? I'm starting to feel like a freak of nature.

What is it about MetaFilter that compels me to overshare?
posted by Space Kitty at 9:13 PM on January 27, 2011


There are diva cups and keepers and that disposable instead thing which is shaped like a diaphram, and of course a diaphragm makes for a good menstrual cup -- it doesn't hold as much as a diva, but might fit some women with cervix issues better, and you can buy the Instead things to check.

But the best thing is putting your next birth control ring in right away and "accidentally" forgetting to have your period altogether.
posted by jb at 9:44 PM on January 27, 2011


I really want to go with the Mooncup - but I have an IUD at the moment, which is not friends with it. I don't like how much waste towels generate, and since my flow got heavy (yeah, sorry, TMI. But it's really, really heavy.) I've had to switch to more absorbent towels and they irritate my skin. (I would be very pissed off if they stopped making Bodyform. Back in the day I could buy the 20p a packet value towels, but now I need to be DISCERNING and they seem to be the ones that work best for me.)
posted by mippy at 6:32 AM on January 28, 2011


Space Kitty you are not alone! I've used o.b.s over the years, and love them for portability, but I have short fingers and what seems to be a vagina that points in a strange direction and I now find applicators useful for getting my tampon perfectly situated. O.b. are definitely more comfortable, and I've sometimes wished that they'd make an applicator version so that I could have my cake and eat it too.
posted by Polyhymnia at 6:54 AM on January 28, 2011


Squatting during insertion helps with short-finger syndrome.
posted by L'Estrange Fruit at 7:27 AM on January 28, 2011


That post on the green had me on a mad New Years Eve search for tampons. Thankfully, I frequent neighborhoods where there were still some on the shelves. So, a box here, and a box there and suddenly I had spent more than $200 on tampons.

I'm not proud of it, but I sure am relieved, because no other tampon works for me either, unless 10 minutes without a mess counts as working.

Metafilter: like just shoving a pretzel rod up there for all the good it did.
posted by bilabial at 9:05 AM on January 28, 2011 [1 favorite]


Eeek! sonika, if you're trying to bypass your cervix, you are definitely doing it wrong. Might be a good time to brush up on one's anatomy. The cervix is the os of the uterus; all insertables reside OUTSIDE of the cervix.
posted by kinnakeet at 10:35 AM on January 28, 2011 [1 favorite]


It sounds to me that there is a *ton* of money to be made inventing a better tampon. I am somewhat surprised there isn't a bit more Innovation in the field.

Imagine the hassles not-first-world women have.
posted by five fresh fish at 10:40 AM on January 28, 2011


Kinnakeet, without giving too much information, it really depends on how your parts are put together. I know the problem of which she speaks. A bump in the road, if you get my drift, and if you don't bypass it, the product does not stay PUT.

I used to love OB back before I had children and got older. Let's just say the last time I used them they were unsuccessful. Thank God for Platex.
posted by St. Alia of the Bunnies at 11:24 AM on January 28, 2011


What St. Alia said - if I don't bypass WHATEVER IT IS, the tampon doesn't stay *in.*

Given the fact that once the tampon *has* crossed the Rubicon, it does not leak, it's not doing it wrong. If I were actually bypassing the cervix, obviously, the fluid would just flow right out - it doesn't.

But yeah - the applicator is necessary to get the job done.
posted by sonika at 2:38 PM on January 28, 2011


O.b. are definitely more comfortable, and I've sometimes wished that they'd make an applicator version so that I could have my cake and eat it too.

One of the things I learned from the AskMe is that Kotex U compact tampons are essentially an applicator version of o.b. There's a nice picture in the comments of this Jezebel post.
posted by bluefly at 6:51 PM on January 28, 2011


Thank the FSM that my flow has slowed but if it wasn't for the Ultras I would never have been able to stop the Mississippi River flow that I had to contend with for over a decade. I could actually sleep through most of the night without getting up with the baby lamb sized OB.
posted by bannana at 11:01 PM on January 28, 2011 [3 favorites]


I nearly had a heart attack when I started reading this post. Thank goodness they aren't gone forever. But, yes, time to investigate the cup now.
posted by ocherdraco at 4:04 PM on January 30, 2011


Drugstore.com just sent a notice out that all sizes of O.B.s are back in stock; I assume this means that they are now available in other stores now as well.
posted by vers at 5:01 AM on February 5, 2011


Now, as in right now. Now now now. Time for more tea. Now.
posted by vers at 5:17 AM on February 5, 2011


« Older Not your typical SLYT post   |   "Our Shooter's A Military Man" Newer »


This thread has been archived and is closed to new comments



Post