Great Industrial Design Student Work: The Ora Menstrual Cup and Applicator

“Menstrual care should be natural, intuitive, predictable, and reliable,” write Nihaarika Arora, Cheryl Zhang, and Xinyue Wu, all students from SVA’s Masters of Products of Design program. How could design improve upon the incumbent options? Looking at commonly-used menstrual products, the trio placed them into two categories:

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They then considered issues of waste, cost, convenience and safety:

Reusable menstrual cups not only had the longest wear time and created the least waste, but also had the best capacity. For those unfamiliar with menstrual cups, here’s how they are used:

The team then interviewed subjects on the pain points of using menstrual products, zeroing in on the key ergonomic hassle of using a menstrual cup: “The folding and insertion step. One participant explained, ‘Learning how to fold it and insert it in a way that worked for my body was challenging.’ Another shared, ‘I gave up when I was unable to correctly insert the cup after several attempts.’

Seeking a form to make this process easier, the team then set about sketching and prototyping:

They then arrived at the design for their Ora system, which consists of a cup, a reusable applicator and a push-stick to help both load the cup into the applicator and deploy it into place.

Here’s how it works:

“First, the ORA cup is inserted into the vaginal canal using the reusable applicator.”

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“Next, the soft applicator head must be inserted into the canal (about 2 inches). The push stick helps release the cup. If inserted correctly, there should be no discomfort.”

After up to 12 hours, the cup is removed, drained and cleaned.

The team also designed the packaging and branding:

“In the future,” writes Arora, “we as a team would like to promote menstrual education and provide equal opportunity for clean and reliable menstrual products.”

If they could line up production, I could see this being a massive Kickstarter success.

Source: core77

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