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There are all kinds of apps to track health-related data, including the native Health app that Apple has on their latest iPhones. One category I've tried several apps for is a period tracker. I wanted to find something that was detailed enough that my girls could use it to eventually track NFP information on it, but that wasn't merely an NFP app. Something that I could track various symptoms on, but was somewhat customizable so I could hide symptoms that didn't apply to me. I never found one, but my older daughter did — it's called Clue.

What first attracted my daughter to Clue was that it wasn't some pink app that put the word "PERIOD" on her iPod screen. In fact, one of their selling points is that it's "not pink."


Another selling point for her was that the notifications could be set to give you a code phrase that lets the user know it's almost time for her period. Rather than a notification popping up on your phone that could be potentially embarrassing ("Your period should begin in two days!"), you can create a code phrase that alerts you without alerting anyone who might pick up your phone and see the lock screen notifications. "Company coming soon!" or "The USSR is invading Finland and Sweden!" or "Lucifer's monthly waterfall subscription is due." (I have weird people in my house.) Clue also reminds you to do a monthly breast exam, which you can set to come up a certain number of days after your period ends. This, too, is customizable, so you don't necessarily need to see "Do a breast exam!", but can have it say things like, "How are the girls doing?"


Clue has recently done a major update that has given its users even more tracking options, including sleep, mood, cravings, energy levels, and more. Since it's not strictly for NFP, users can track various contraception options, but these can be left off. But if you are using NFP, you can track all the symptoms: basal temperature and cervical mucous, sex, and more. If there's not a tag for what you're looking for, you can create one yourself in the "Tags" category.

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Another big part of the upgrade is the ability to share information with the Health app on your iPhone. You can share a pretty decent list of information, so if you're using Health to track and collate data from different apps, you can find Clue information there, as well.


When you open Clue, the home screen contains basic information about your current cycle, with little color-coded boxes that reflect the various things you've tracked for that day. You're given a general idea of when your next period will begin, as well. If you click the "History" button on the bottom, you're brought to a screen that shows your cycle lengths at a glance.


For more detailed information, click the calendar and scroll through the months. Color-coded boxes appear on each day, and clicking that day will bring you to a detailed list of recorded symptoms.


If you get busy and forget to track things for a few days, Clue will also remind you with a notification ("Anything to tell Clue today?") The timing of this can be set in the app, as well, so that it reminds you at a certain time of day after a certain number of days without entries. You can, of course, customize that message, as well.


There's even a widget available for your lock screen on the iPhone so you can see at a glance how long you've got before your next cycle begins. (This, however, isn't customizable. Don't know if that's an Apple thing or not.)


Clue promotes their app as a scientific way to get to know your body and the symptoms you have throughout the month. The high levels of customization help make it an app that anyone can use to track as much or as little as they'd like. I've been using it for most of this year and have really loved it. It's simple to use, it's got a million ways to customize it, and the word "period" is nowhere to be seen on your iPhone screen. And, best of all: it's free! No ad upgrades, no trickery with "track six cycles and then please pay us." Plain old free. It's available for both iPhone and Android, and it absolutely rocks!

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©2015 Christine Johnson
All images ©2015 Christine Johnson