Saturday, May 28, 2016

GoPatch Menstrual Cramps Patch Review

I love love LOVE  natural, homeopathic remedies, so I was super excited when GoPatch asked me to try their homeopathic menstrual cramps patch in exchange for my honest review. 

Since I'm three months postpartum and haven't started my period yet (Yay, thanks, breastfeeding!), I asked my mom, Nikki, to try the GoPatch. We both have similar periods in that our cramps leave us debilitated, moaning on the couch. She was happy to try the product and sit down with me in my living room for a review/interview.

Period Fairy: How would you describe your usual menstrual pain?

Nikki: I get migraines, headaches,  nausea, bloating, cramps--front and back. My cramps last the whole time--anywhere from four days to a week.

PF: When you were approached about trying these patches, what were your initial thoughts?

Nikki: That hopefully it would help because it had to be better than what I normally use for the pain. And anything is worth trying once, so why not?

PF: What were your hopes?

Nikki: That the patch would take away the cramps and mood swings so I could be comfortable.

PF: Did you have any fears going in?

Nikki: That it wouldn't work and I'd  still have the awful cramps and headaches and everything else.

PF: Did you use any other pain relief while you used the patch?

Nikki: Nope.

PF: How did you feel about using natural pain relief instead of traditional, over-the-counter pain relief?

Nikki: I would rather do anything natural instead of over-the-counter medicine any day. I don't like taking pills, so taking a natural remedy was much better and healthier.

PF: Was the patch easy to use?

Nikki: I didn't use them on my belly button where the instructions said to use them because I have some stomach fat, and the location didn't work for me. The patch wouldn't stay in place there, so I put it as close as I could to my belly button. It probably would have worked better if I could have put it where they said.

PF: And how did the GoPatch menstrual cramp patch work for you?

Nikki: Friday, I had back cramps, and they were like 8 to 10 pain level, so I put on the patch as close as I could to my belly button. Within an hour, my cramps went from an 8 to a 5/6. So I thought that was pretty cool. And then within two hours, my cramps were down to a 2 pain level, which is really good because a normal period for me --I'm usually stuck in bed with a book, moaning and crying because I have such bad cramps I can't do anything. Within two hours of putting on the patch, I was outside, scraping my house, painting. That's how well it worked. I took the patch off at 10, and even after I took it off, I hardly had any cramps.

Saturday, I woke up--I had no cramps. So that was kind of weird because that's not a norm either. I put the patch on and basically went until 9 o' clock without any cramps whatsoever. I had energy, wasn't nauseated, so I could eat. After that point, I didn't have any more samples so I just worked out the rest of my period, and I thought, "Oh gosh here we go back to cramps," but actually I didn't get any more.

The third day, I felt really good. Today is my fourth day, and I've had no cramps. Oh yeah, I'd say it worked. It worked better than Motrin. Usually, I have to take Motrin like crazy. And heating pads.  

PF: Would you use these homeopathic patches again?

Nikki: Yes.

PF: Would you recommend them to a friend?

Nikki: Yes, especially if they have bad periods like I do.

Image property of GoPatch. Source.

Thanks for the interview review, Ma! Nikki is a beautiful wife, mother of three, and a grandma who enjoys sewing, art, and gardening.

My mom and me. Nikki is on the right. 

You can read more about the wonderful GoPatch menstrual cramps patch here.

Don't miss future posts! Follow me on Twitter @Je55ieMullin5 or "Like" my author Facebook page. Do you have questions or want me to review your product? Email me at jessie(dot)mullins5(at)gmail(dot)com. 

Friday, December 4, 2015

How Did You Handle Your Daughter's First Period?

I was at Meijer the other day, picking up a few things with my husband, Gary. I needed some panty liners, so we went over to that aisle, and I picked up on something right away. A young woman had either gotten her first period or her mom was preparing her ahead of time.

In front of all the colorful boxes and packages of pads and tampons, a woman stood with her young teenage daughter. The daughter kept looking around (anywhere but at the packages in front of them), and she noticed us coming.

She nudged her mom and said something, so her mom leaned in and talked in a quieter voice. She pointed at a couple different pads, probably explaining the differences. I'm pretty sure Gary picked up on this significant event and the daughter's discomfort because he backed away down the aisle while I grabbed my liners.

As Gary and I walked to the checkouts, I smiled at him like this:

He said, "Hey, don't make fun of her."

"I'm not!" I said. "That was precious. It was her first time shopping for that stuff."

I'm pretty sure it was only precious to me because I'm a mom now, so I saw the experience from a mom's perspective. I mean, I have a son, so we won't have this exact experience, but he's going to grow up, and there will be talks and such. And it will be precious. And probably really, excruciatingly uncomfortable for him just like it was for the daughter at Meijer. Just like it is for every teenager, right?

I remember when I got my first period and the first time I bought tampons with my parents. Both unpleasant experiences.

But now that I'm a mom, I see my own mom wasn't trying to embarrass me when she told her friends at work that I got my first period. She probably just thought it was precious. Still, like, can it, mother, but...I get it.

As different as the experience is for the parents than for the teenager, parents still need to handle all this with a certain finesse. You know, try not to scar their child for life.

So, parents, how have you handled (or will you handle) your daughter's first period? How did you navigate what was, I'm sure, a totally awkward experience for her? Please share in the comments, on my Facebook page, or find me on Twitter @Je55ieMullin5.

Wednesday, November 4, 2015

How to Ask for a Tampon

Buzzfeed just came out with a hilarious video about asking for a tampon/talking about periods in the workplace. Check it out.

This is meant to be funny. I don't think any of us are going to stand up and paint war marks on our face or make it rain with disposables. But we shouldn't have to whisper. If you need a tampon, you need a tampon. It really is just like asking for a tissue.

So how do you handle this situation at school or in the workplace? Comment below!

Thursday, June 18, 2015

How a Model Lost Her Leg to TSS and Why I Don't Use Tampons

I originally read about Lauren Wasser over on Hello Giggles.

Lauren Wasser is a model who valued her beauty and athleticism. Both of which she felt were rocked when she lost her leg to TSS. Hello Giggles quoted her saying,

"You live your whole life and thinking, 'I'm an athlete,' or, 'I'm a pretty girl,' but this was something physical that I had no control over. It took me a while to figure out if I was still worthy, if I was still pretty."

We know she's still worth and pretty. Of course. Losing a leg doesn't change that. But I think we can all sympathize since is is something no one would want to go through.

Something you think would never happen to you.

So what is TSS?

The Mayo Clinic defines TSS as:

"Toxic shock syndrome is a rare, life-threatening complication of certain types of bacterial infections. Often toxic shock syndrome results from toxins produced by Staphylococcus aureus (staph) bacteria, but the condition may also be caused by toxins produced by group A streptococcus (strep) bacteria.

Toxic shock syndrome historically has been associated primarily with the use of superabsorbent tampons. However, since manufacturers pulled certain types of tampons off the market, the incidence of toxic shock syndrome in menstruating women has declined."

Just because you use tampons doesn't mean you will definitely get TSS. It's pretty rare. To minimize your chances of getting the potentially-deadly infection, here are some things you can do:

-Wear the lowest absorbancy tampon. On light days, wear light tampons.
-Change your tampon every 4-8 hours, or whatever time-frame is suggested on the tampon box.
-Wash your hands before you change your tampon so you don't spread bacteria. 
-Use alternative menstrual protection, which I'll list at the end.

How do you know if you have TSS? There are the signs to watch for, according to the Mayo Clinic:

-A sudden high fever
-Low blood pressure
-Vomiting or diarrhea
-A rash resembling a sunburn, especially on the palms of your hands and soles of your feet
-Muscle aches
-Redness of your eyes, mouth, and throat

I personally avoid tampons anyway, which is what I recommend you do for the sake of your health. Not only are tampons associated with TSS, but mainstream brands are full of chemicals, fillers, and pesticides. All of that gets absorbs into your blood stream through the walls of your vagina. Remember, we love our vaginas, so we should keep them healthy!

I used to swear by tampons. I loved the clean feeling. But I now use safer, greener products that save me money in the long run. And still keep me clean!

This post contains affiliate links. That means, if you click on the links and make a purchase, you help support Period Fairy! Thanks if you do, but no pressure.

The product I can vouch for the most is the Lunette Menstrual Cup. Click here to read my review.
Click here to visit

This beautiful little cup can be worn for up to twelve (twelve!!) hours without risk of TSS. You simply fold the cup, insert it and push until you feel it pop open, wear, and remove to rinse so you can wear it again. Best thing ever. 

My second suggestion is a product I bought last month, but won't be able to use for quite a while. (Because I won't have periods for nine months!) This product, my friends, is The Sea Sponge Tampon.

I wrote more about it here.
Honestly, I'm more excited to try this  than to use the menstrual cup again. For one reason: The minerals. Because this sponge comes straight from the sea, it has all the wonderful minerals from the sea. And just like chemicals from tampons are absorbed through our vaginas, the minerals from the sea sponge would be absorbed. That's a good thing. Women have even said it made their periods less painful. Yes, please!

There are more green products out there, but these two are my favorite. No-risk. 

Stay informed. Stay safe. And love yourselves, ladies.


Friday, May 1, 2015

Jose Garcia and #realmensupportwomen

Jose Garcia is a 15-year-old who encourages his fellow dude friends to bring pads and tampons to school just in case a girl friend gets an unexpected period and doesn't have her own stash on hand. On Garcia's Instagram, he posted this picture (below) and said, "You are completely welcome to ask me  for a pad at any time without recieving a negative response or a dirty look. We should all help each other out like this so you don't have to thank me at all."

You can read more over at The Daily Dot because they pretty much said everything. I just really love this and wanted to post my support and adoration.

How many 15-year-old guys do you know who have empathy like this for their female classmates? Sure, your husband, dad, or brother might pick up pads or tampons from the store for you, but Garcia offers this to all the young women at his school. Mind blown. Not only that, but he's encouraging other men to follow suit with his hashtag #realmensupportwomen.

He's getting some flack on there with comments like, "If you need a man to give you a pad, you're not a strong independent woman." Or, "Real men don't tell other men how to be real men."

Um. I'm all for woman power, but there's nothing wrong with asking a guy for something, or a  guy offering help. Strong people don't let pride get in the way of something this cool. 

And, um. Garcia's not saying if you don't hand out pads you're not a real man. He's saying you should care about what women go through. (I think.) 

Don't beat the guy down. He's awesome!

Did you just hear that? That was the sound of a thousand teen women swooning. Stay sweet, Jose!

Thursday, April 23, 2015

What to Say or Not Say to Your Infertile Loved One

In yesterday's post, which you can read here, we learned the many causes of infertility. So now you know there's more to conception than relaxation. Easy peasy, don't tell an infertile loved one to relax. But what can you say?

 Every person is different. People have varied levels of sensitivity, so you have to kind of gauge what's okay to say to someone. Here are four general rules:

1) Don't ask the childless married couple when they're going to have kids. For one, that's their business. If they want to share, they will, but don't ask. You never know if they're struggling with infertility, and if they're not open about it, the question will hurt them and put them in an awkward position. Instead, you can ask them what they're enjoying about marriage.

(Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links. See Disclosures and Privacy Policy for more information. Click on picture links to purchase, but no pressure! I'm just glad you're here.)


2) If you find out someone's struggling with infertility, don't give advice or tell them about your aunt who ate pickles every day to get pregnant. If they ask for advice, go for it. Otherwise, just no. Trust me, if someone wants a baby and isn't getting pregnant, they've done the research.

3) Don't compare. Don't bring up that everyone in her family pushes out babies at the speed of light. Everyone is unique with different issues.


4) Don't try to explain why she's going through her struggle. In her private moments of pain, she's already asked God or the universe, "Why me?" If she got an answer in all her searching, then fine. Unless she asks you for help in this area, please don't even go there. Life seems incredibly unfair when a loving person can't have a baby, but a negligent, abusive person can. You can't explain why that happens.  

Ultimately, go with your heart and act out of compassion and sensitivity. I started bawling in front of a friend one day and she gave me unsolicited spiritual advice that rocked my world. I'm open to questions and talk about TTC freely. But not everyone is comfortable with these.   

With the general rules out there, I asked some ladies from a TTC (trying to conceive) support group I belong to if they would anonymously give me examples of things people said that were hurtful and things people said that made them feel supported. A few ladies were kind enough to help me. (Some responses have been separated into the two groups and/or edited for clarity, but content remains original.)


Things that hurt us:

"The worst one was from someone who said I couldn't get pregnant because I wasn't having sex right. (I have been pregnant three times, just haven't gotten past the first trimester yet.)"

"'If it's meant to be, it's meant to be. Maybe God has better plans for you. Stop stressing. Have you tried xyz? (Insert anything from old wives tales to internet crap.) Why don't you adopt? Why don't you do IVF?'"

"When I was pregnant (which ended in a miscarriage) I had chosen everything I wanted for my unborn child, then when I lost the child, my friend (who got pregnant right after my miscarriage) bought everything she knew I wanted. When I confronted her, all she said was, 'I'm having the baby first!' That's pure evil."

"When family tells you it'll happen, just to relax."

"When a friend steals your baby's name. One of my friends stole my baby's name after my miscarriage. Five years down the line, it still hurts to look at her girl, knowing she has the name that was meant for my Angel. And the relax thing. How relaxed do you want me to be? Or, 'Forget about it, it'll just happen.' Fiance last week said, 'Maybe this is God's way of telling you that I'm not supposed to be the father.' That one opened Pandora's box."

"When my friend threw TTC in my face during a fight. She knew how important a baby is to me, and she threw it at me out of spite. Another is when people try to make me feel crazy for going to extremes (or what they think is extreme) to have a baby."

Things that make us feel supported:

"When people open up to me about their own battles, I know I'm not alone. I love it when people value who I am now, not just the mother I'll be in the future to my kids who will come. Also, there are only a few people who ackowledge my position as a mother with babies in Heaven, but those who do are my greatest supporters."

"The most positive thing you can do is LISTEN."

A few things people have said to make me feel supported: "I've never gone through what you're going through, so I can't say I understand how you feel, but it must be frustrating and I want you to know I'm here for you." Others have said, "I don't know what to say, but I'm here for you." Also, it's so valuable when people listen. That was already said, but my goodness, it helps to have someone to vent to. Another thing I appreciate is when people tell me they're praying for me--but this tends to only go over well with the praying-type. For people who like touch, simple hugs or pats on the back are welcome.Finally, when in doubt, ask your loved one what you can do to support them.

If you have any you want to add, you can comment or email me at jessie(dot)mullins5(at)gmail(dot) com.

Thank you for reading and supporting!

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Causes of Infertility (Not Just Stress)

This week is National Infertility Awareness Week. Why is this necessary? Because there are tons of misconceptions about infertility. Because chances are someone you know is affected. (If you want to know how infertility is defined and how common it is, you can read yesterday's post here.)

If you've ever experienced infertility, you've heard the advice, "Just relax. Stop trying so hard and it'll happen."

(Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links. See Disclosures and Privacy Policy for more information. Click on picture links to purchase, but no pressure! I'm just glad you're here.)

FertiliTea: A Natural Fertility Tea Blend 3oz $18.95

If you know someone who's going through infertility, you may have been the one to give that advice. If so, don't feel bad--you didn't know the weight of yours words. But here's the thing. The problem isn't always stress. It could be stress, but there are so many other physical reasons a person may not be able to conceive. Even if they're the chillest person on the planet. When you tell a person going through infertility to relax, all we hear is, "You're causing your own problem."

Again, if you've given us this advice, we hear you and we appreciate that you're trying to help. But the solution isn't always so simple.

Here's a list of possible causes of infertility. (Note: I'm not a fertility specialist or medical expert of any kind, so I don't know everything. If I miss something, please let me know, and I'll dd it to the list!) You can click on any of the italicized for further reading.

Pre-Seed sperm-friendly lubricant $19.96

Causes of infertility in women:

-PCOS (polycystic ovarian syndrome): an endocrine system disorder that causes irregular periods and interferes with ovulation.

-POI or POF (primary ovarian insufficiency or premature ovarian failure): ovaries stop working before the age of 40 and is not the same as early menopause.

-PID (pelvic inflammatory disease)

-Endometriosis: a disorder where the tissue that usually lines the inside of the uterus grows outside the uterus.

-Surgery from ectopic pregnancy: in advanced cases, the fallopian tube may be destroyed or removed.

-Physical problems with uterus: a misshapen or out-of-place uterus. 

-Uterine Fibroids: noncancerous growths that can prevent implantation from occurring. 

-Age: chances of pregnancy per month start to decrease after age 30 and significantly drop after age 40.

-Cigarette smoke: causes increase in eggs and sperm or causes unhealthy eggs and sperm that increase chance of miscarriage. (Note: secondhand smoke has the same effect.)

-Alcohol: can damage sperm and/or cause hormonal imbalances.

-Stress: there you have it. Stress is a cause, but it's not the only cause or even the most common.
-Poor diet

-Athletic training: too much exercise can mess with the menstrual cycle. Too little means your reproductive organs may not get the blood flow they need.

-Overweight or underweight: check with your doctor to make sure your BMI is within the healthy range.

-STIs: Chlamydia and Gonorrhea

-Hormonal imbalances

-Gluten sensititivy : including Celiac disease or silent sensitivity

-Environmental hazards such as pesticides and chemicals

-Allergies to sperm

-Unexplained infertility: this happens when a medical expert can't find any physical reason for your infertility. Make sure your doctor rules out these issues.

Causes of infertility in men:

-Varicocele: veins in testicles are too large and cause overheating of sperm. 

-Infections: STIs, mumps, inflamed prostate

-Retrograde ejaculation: semen enters the bladder.

-Antibodies attack sperm


-Undescended testicle: at birth, the testicle(s) never dropped into the correct position.

-Hormone imbalances

-Gluten sensitivity: Celiac disease or silent sensitivity 



-Cigarette smoke


-Environmental toxins: pesticides and heavy metals


-Overheating the testicles: avoid hot baths, tight underwear, and hot tubs

If you made it through that list, you're a sport and a wonderful supporter. Thanks for taking the time to learn about the many potential causes, other than stress, of infertility.

Still not sure how to talk to your loved ones going through infertility? Tomorrow's post will focus on etiquette. For now, it means a lot that you cared enough to read this post!