Tampons vs. Menstrual Cups: Which One is Better? (Video)

Tampons vs. Menstrual Cups: Which One is Better? (Video)

Women have been using tampons to capture menstrual flow for thousands of years. In the past, tampons consisted of everything from wool to paper to plants. The modern tampon--which is made from cotton or a blend of rayon and cotton--was first patented and sold in the United States back in the 1930s, and it continues to be what most women today use.

But is there a better option than tampons?

Read More

How Birth Control Pills Change Which Men Women Are Attracted To

How Birth Control Pills Change Which Men Women Are Attracted To

Women’s behavior changes in several ways when they reach the most fertile part of their menstrual cycle--that is, when they ovulate. Among other things, research has found that ovulating women fantasize about sex more often and are more likely to wear red or pink clothing. Interestingly, ovulation also appears to change which kinds of men heterosexual women find most sexually attractive, such that they tend to be drawn to “manlier” men during peak fertility.

So what happens when women take birth control pills or other hormonal contraceptives that prevent ovulation?

Read More

Are There Any Benefits Or Risks To Having Sex During Your Period?

Are There Any Benefits Or Risks To Having Sex During Your Period?

A reader submitted the following question:

“I have read several blogs and magazines saying that having sex during menstruation can help to alleviate cramps. Is there any truth to this? Is there any research? Also is there any risk in having sex in those moments?”

Thanks for these great questions! With respect to the idea that sex reduces cramping and pain during menstruation, you’re right—there are a TON of websites out there making this claim. I did a quick search and saw it mentioned on WebMD, Kinsey Confidential, Medical Daily, and ABC News, among many, many others.

However, not a single one pointed to a specific study or source to back this idea up.

Read More

Did PMS Evolve In Order To Split Up Infertile Couples?

Did PMS Evolve In Order To Split Up Infertile Couples?

Premenstrual syndrome (or PMS as it is more commonly known) is a catchall term for any unpleasant physical and psychological symptoms a woman might experience just prior to getting her period. Research suggests that as many as 80% of women experience PMS; however, the nature and severity of the symptoms varies dramatically across individuals [1]. On the surface, PMS might not appear to be an adaptive trait, especially considering that, at least for a very small percentage of women, the symptoms are so severe as to become debilitating (in which case it may be referred to as premenstrual dysphoric disorder, or PMDD). But if PMS is so widespread, is it possible that perhaps it came to exist for some evolutionary reason? That’s what Dr. Michael Gillings argues in a controversial new paper just published in Evolutionary Applications [2].

Read More

Can Changing Your Birth Control Routine Affect The Quality Of Your Sex Life?

Can Changing Your Birth Control Routine Affect The Quality Of Your Sex Life?

A growing amount of research suggests that what heterosexual women find attractive in men changes across the menstrual cycle. Specifically, women tend to report greater attraction to masculine-looking and -acting guys when they’re ovulating, supposedly because these traits are signs of better genes and, therefore, a greater chance of fathering babies who will survive. Because these ovulatory shifts in mating preferences are wiped out when women take hormonal contraceptives, scientists have begun to wonder what implications this might have for women’s sex lives and relationships. In particular, what happens if a woman starts a relationship with a guy she met while she was on the pill and later decides to go off the pill? Are the subsequent hormonal changes she experiences linked to any changes in her relationship? According to a new study published in Psychological Science, the answer appears to be yes.

Read More

Women Have More Sexual Fantasies When They’re Ovulating

Women Have More Sexual Fantasies When They’re Ovulating

Several studies have revealed changes in women’s sexual attitudes and behaviors during ovulation. For example, research suggests that ovulating women opt for sexier and more revealing clothing [1] and move their bodies in ways that are deemed more attractive by men [2]. Such findings could help to explain why female exotic dancers tend to earn bigger tips during this phase of the menstrual cycle! Other research has found that ovulation changes the characteristics heterosexual women find attractive in men. Building upon all of these results, a new study suggests that ovulation also changes how often women think about sex, as well as the content of their sexual fantasies [3].

Read More

Women’s Feelings About Male Body Hair Appear To Change During Ovulation

Women’s Feelings About Male Body Hair Appear To Change During Ovulation

There is a growing body of evidence that what heterosexual women find attractive in men varies across the menstrual cycle. Specifically, when women are at their most fertile (i.e., when they are ovulating), they tend to be attracted to “manlier” men. That is, ovulating women show an exaggerated preference for guys with masculine-looking faces and bodies, deeper voices, and so forth. The prevailing theory is that women are evolutionarily wired to look for partners who have the best genes for making babies. Because masculine physical features are supposedly a sign of a healthy immune system, it is thought that women have developed a preference for manly men when they are at peak fertility with the hope that these superior genes will be passed along to their children. Based upon this reasoning, one might presume that women’s preferences for male body hair would also fluctuate across the menstrual cycle because body hair is typically considered a sign of masculinity. A recent study suggests that women’s body hair preferences do indeed vary according to fertility status, but not in the way that you might expect.

Read More

Women Reach For Red And Pink Clothes During Ovulation

Women Reach For Red And Pink Clothes During Ovulation

Research has found that women attempt to enhance their attractiveness when they are ovulating, a finding that many scientists have argued is an evolved mechanism designed to increase their odds of conception. For example, not only do ovulating women choose to wear more fashionable outfits than women at other stages of the menstrual cycle [1], but ovulating women also experience changes in the pitch of their voice and their body movements that make them more desirable to men [2,3]. A new study published in Psychological Science adds to this growing body of research by suggesting that ovulating women may also choose to adorn themselves with sexier colors as another potential means of enhancing their attractiveness [4].

 

Read More

Ovulating Women Fantasize About Sex More Often

There is a growing body of research indicating that women’s sexuality changes as they near ovulation. For example, ovulating women tend to dress in sexier clothes and reveal more skin [1], which may help to explain why female exotic dancers earn bigger tips during the fertile phase of their menstrual cycle! A new study suggests that ovulation may also change how often women think about sex and the content of their sexual fantasies [2].
Read More