Getting started with XO Flo menstrual cup

Welcome, new menstrual cup user! Here is our beginner's guide to XO Flo.

How does XO Flo work?

Like all menstrual cups, XO Flo is inserted into the vaginal canal, where it sits beneath the cervix to collect your flow. Thanks to small holes at the rim of the cup, it forms a seal against the vaginal walls to stop it from moving around or leaking.

To put the cup in, you'll need to fold it, insert it, guide it into place, and let it pop open. Then you can wear it as long as your flow allows, or for up to 12 hours at a time! To remove it, you'll break the seal and pull the cup out by the base.

Inserting XO Flo

Before using your XO Flo for the first time, thoroughly wash your hands and the cup in warm water with a mild, body-safe soap. Now you're ready to fold and insert! Using your preferred fold, gently insert the menstrual cup rim-first into the vagina, angled slightly toward the tailbone, and slowly guide it to where it feels comfortable. Release your fingers to open the cup. When it's fully open, the holes at the rim will allow it to form a seal against the vaginal walls, preventing shifting and leaks. The length of the cup is worn within the body, though the stem may remain outside of the body depending on the length of the vaginal canal and where the cup naturally sits inside of it.

Wondering how to fold XO Flo? Here are the two best methods:


For the c-fold, simply press one side of the cup while using your other hand to fold it in half. XO Flo’s patented intertwined inner support rings form an “X” and “O”, which provide different cup opening experiences! If you would prefer the cup to open a bit more slowly, start by pressing the "O" sides of the cup together, then fold in half again. For a springier release, use the "X" sides instead.

The c-fold gives you a fold where the cup is of uniform width the whole way down (the punch-down, below, makes the top of the cup smaller, while the base remains the same). If you’re looking for a technique that allows your cup to pop open quickly and easily, this is the fold for you! 


The punch-down fold consists of pressing the rim into the body of the cup. It’s customizable in the sense that you can push the rim in as much or as little as you want. What’s nice about this fold is that it makes the top of the cup very small if you push the rim all the way down, which is great for anyone who wants the initial point of insertion to be as slim as possible! Another good thing about the punch-down is that it allows XO Flo to pop open more gently (for example, if you try the c-fold and find you want a softer release).

Just like your first time using a tampon, your first time using XO Flo might not go 100% smoothly. And that's okay! While some lucky folks get the hang of using a menstrual cup right away, lots of us take two or three cycles to catch on.

We recommend wearing a cloth Pantyliner as backup during your first cycle with XO Flo, and checking frequently for leaks. You can take your cup out every few hours to see how full it is, and you'll start to learn how often you actually need to empty it. You might be surprised at how little you actually flow!

It's a good idea to try your new menstrual cup on a low-pressure day, where you have nothing going on that would interfere with getting the hang of it! This will help you stay relaxed, which is an important thing to do, since tense muscles can make inserting or removing the cup feel more difficult.