Never be ambushed by Aunt Flo again. 

By Samantha Lauriello
July 23, 2019

So you're on a date, and it's going pretty well. You head to the restroom because all that wine is weighing on your bladder, but your mood sours: You realize your period has made an unexpected appearance, and you don't have a tampon. 

Using a period tracker app can help you avoid that kind of surprise scenario. But that's not the only reason you might want one. A period tracker app can also help you know what a "normal" period is like for you, so you'll be on top of it if something isn't right. Having that data on hand can then make it easier for your gynecologist to figure out what's wrong.

Keeping track of your period via an app can also help pinpoint your fertility window if you're trying to get pregnant—or trying not to. 

"All period tracking apps have a different purpose," Christine Greves, an ob-gyn at the center for obstetrics and gynecology at Orlando Health in Florida, tells Health. "Some people want to track it so they don't get pregnant, some people want to track it so they do get pregnant, and some people just want to know if they're going to get their period during their vacation." 

Lots of different apps on the market right now can track your period. To find the best, we rounded up 5 that come highly recommended by reviewers and by Dr. Greves herself. Just remember, you shouldn't use an app as your sole form of birth control, since they're not always 100% accurate. Here, the best period tracker apps to stay on top of your cycle. 

RELATED: How to Choose a Period-Tracking App That Actually Works for You

Clue 

 is the favorite app of the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG); it was the top-ranked period and ovulation tracking app per ACOG's journal, Obstetrics & Gynecology, a very impressive honor. One of Clue's main selling points is that it aims to actually teach you about your body and how your reproductive system works. It can also help you ID things unique to your cycle: Log in the details of your flow, pain level, PMS symptoms, sex frequency, and more to help the app identify patterns. (Clue is free in the Apple App Store.)

Flo 

Sync the data you get from  with Apple’s Health app, and you'll be able to track your sleep duration, water consumption, and physical activity as well. Flo can also turn into a fertility and pregnancy tracker if and when you need it to. The app will estimate your most fertile days, and when you do get pregnant, it'll help you keep track of your baby's development. (Flo is free in the Apple App Store.)

RELATED: 6 Things Your Period Can Reveal About Your Health

Cycles

If you want to get an idea of when your period will come but don't want to input a lot of info, is the app for you. Just rotate a dial to the first day of your period, and the app will tell you when you're likely fertile, when you might experience PMS symptoms, and when you should get your period again. You can also share your data with your partner, so they can be tuned in, too. (Cycles is free in the Apple App Store.)

Eve

Want to have a little fun with your period? With , you can get a daily “Cyclescope," a horoscope-like prediction based on where you are in your cycle, as well as daily sex quizzes. The app also comes with a community feature, where you can discuss all things menstruation with other users. Oh and don't forget, it predicts upcoming periods and chances of pregnancy, too. (Eve is free in the Apple App Store.)

MyFlo

Raise your hand if you have annoying symptoms around that time of the month (think bloating, fatigue, acne, headaches...you get the idea). will help you log your symptoms in a way that can give you a clearer picture of your overall health. It can even suggest lifestyle changes (such as foods you should be eating) to make you feel better. Of course, if the app does point out any health issues, it's best to see your doctor for actual tests and advice. (MyFlo is $1.99 in the Apple App Store.)

RELATED: How Your Period Changes During Your 20s, 30s, and 40s

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