Menstrual Products

Q&A: When you're using a tampon, how far back do you put the applicator? When I put one in it didn't catch any blood?

Common mistake, so frustrating when this occurs! The number one reason this happens is because the tampon is not inserted far enough into the vaginal canal. Check out the video at Inserting a tampon can be done while sitting on the toilet, standing or squatting over the toilet. Once you insert the tampon, remember to direct towards your lower back and not straight up. Push the applicator in as far as it will comfortably go. At this point your fingers should be very close to, or pressed against your vagina, then simply withdraw the applicator and discard. The more in touch you become with your body, the more you learn about your own anatomy, the easier this becomes. I can guarantee you the more times you try, the more comfortable you will become with inserting a tampon.

When inserting a tampon you insert the outer tube of the applicator completely, and then you push the inner tube to insert the tampon (then remove the applicator).  This may require some practice, and getting used to some new language.  Basically, you insert the thicker part of the tampon, push the skinnier part until it disappears into the thicker part, then remove the applicator.  Now gently tug on the string to make sure the tampon is in place.

Don’t worry if this takes a few tries to get used to.  I don’t know of anyone who got it perfect the first time.  And there’s a very helpful video on our site

Though it probably won’t be helpful, most of what I can say is that you’ll know you put your tampon in right just by kind of feeling it out. It’s not in enough if when you sit down you can feel it. And I don’t think there’s putting it too far back. For me, I know that it’s in enough when it feels comfortable and when it kind of just slips right in. Just to make sure we have all bases covered, I wanted to remind you to take the applicator out before wrapping things up. I’m putting that out there because my mom, when she was fifty years old, used a tampon for the first time and complained about it being uncomfortable because she didn’t realize she had to remove the applicator. If after putting your tampon in correctly and removing the applicator you notice that it still isn’t catching blood, perhaps there just isn’t any blood to catch? May be a period false alarm. That happens all too often with me -- I have the tendency to jump the gun and assume my period’s starting when really, it isn’t. Being a U by Kotex* peer advisor has made me very prepared before every period; heck, now that I look at it, maybe a little too prepared.