Periods – There’s an App for That
As smartphones become ever more integrated into our daily lives, many women are forgoing the traditional diary method for tracking their menstrual cycle and choosing to use a smartphone app instead. Check out our rundown of the best period tracker apps available for iPhone and Android, as well as some tips and advice.
What options are available?
Clue – free on Android and iOS
Clue is one of the most popular period apps available, and not without good reason. The journal Obstetrics & Gynaecology even rated the app as the best free menstrual tracking app, a brilliant accolade. This app is particularly popular with women who are tired of menstrual products being pink, covered in flowers and butterflies and described in euphemistic language like “Aunt Flo” and “time of the month”.
Clue offers a no-nonsense approach to menstrual tracking, using a scientific approach to analyse the patterns in your cycle and track mood changes, cramps, skin problems, sleep and more.
Glow – free on Android and iOS
Glow works primarily as an ovulation calculator and self-proclaimed “fertility companion”, designed to help women both avoiding and attempting to get pregnant. To do this, users of the app input when they are menstruating and the calculator becomes smarter and more accurate over time. The app also looks to track women’s overall health as it can be synced with other health apps such as MyFitnessPal and Misfit, as well as the Apple Health app.
Uniquely amongst the apps on this list, Glow also offers support for patients undergoing IVF, and also offers community and partner support which many other similar apps lack.
myPill – free on Android and iOS
myPill is used primarily by women taking oral contraceptive pills. Whether you take a daily contraceptive such as the progesterone-only pills Cerelle, Cerazette and Feanolla, or if you take three weeks of pills followed by a week’s break, myPill will help to ensure that you don’t forget.
Hormonal contraception can have unexpected effects on your menstrual cycle and can make predicting your periods much trickier, so apps like myPill which also offer period tracking capabilities will help you get used to your new cycle. Like the other apps, myPill allows you to track other symptoms such as acne and cramps, so you can ascertain which changes are a side-effect of your medication and which are part of your cycle.
One popular feature of myPill is its customisable alerts which remind you to take your pill. If you use your phone in public, you may not want everyone around you seeing your phone screen flash “take pill”, so you can set the reminder to display “feed the dog” or “cook dinner”, or something equally innocuous. The app also displays as m.P. on your home screen, helping to keep the app discreet.
Period Tracker Lite – free on Android and iOS
Period Tracker Lite is one of the simpler apps on this list. More feminine and flowery than Clue, Period Tracker Lite has many of the same functions as the above apps. Like myPill, the app displays simply as “P. Tracker” for discretion. This is a popular choice for those looking to use their phone as their primary health tracker, as users can try out the free features in Period Tracker Lite before upgrading to a more robust, paid option.
Tips and advice
Even though there are so many options available, menstrual trackers are not perfect. They often rely on the user remembering to input data, and so can be an imprecise science. Doctors advise strongly against using these apps for family planning – although many of them can predict when you are ovulating, there is no way of testing the accuracy without an ovulation test (and even then, this is not a reliable method of birth control).
If you require emergency contraception or medication for delaying your period or preventing period pain, look no further than Express Pharmacy. We can offer a safe, reliable solution to many of the problems related to your menstrual cycle, all from the comfort of your own home.