Reusable Sanitary Products: The Lowdown
Friday, 8 November 2019 | Admin
There are so many ways we can lead a more eco-friendly life and reduce the amount of waste we create. One you might not think of, but which will make a huge difference, are reusable sanitary products! Cloth pads, reusable panty liners and menstrual cups come in many different shapes, materials and even colours. But most importantly - in terms of comfort, they are far superior to their disposable counterparts.
This blog post gives you all the reasons why reusable sanitary products are worth investing in, and tells you about the options you have when going zero waste with your period!
Reusable Sanitary Products: Why You Should Consider Switching
1. Maximum comfort, when you most need it
Your period is probably not your most favourite time of the month. Many women face a couple of days of discomfort, pain, itchiness, mood swings and other disliked side-effects. So when choosing sanitary products, maximum comfort is a must, and nothing is more comfortable than a cloth menstrual pad. Think about it, soft fabric against the most sensitive part of your body during the most delicate time of the month - instead of crinkly plastic! Cloth sanitary pads don’t just feel softer and more comfortable, they also reduce sweating, odours, itchiness, and other skin irritations and don’t contain any of the toxins that are present in most disposable brands (we do stock Natracare disposable pads and liners though that are toxin free and plastic free!).
The same is true for menstrual cups. Instead of disrupting your vagina’s natural pH flora, leaving you itchy, dry, and prone to yeast infections that conventional tampons can sometimes cause – a menstrual cup is much more comfortable. Once you get the hang of using your cup, it simply collects the blood and you empty it, without causing any side-effects, discomfort or waste.
2. Saving money with reusables
Admittedly, investing in reusable sanitary products might seem costly at first glance. However, when you are in it for the long run, you will save a lot of money. It is estimated that an average woman pays €132 for disposable sanitary products a year. With 35 to 40 years worth of periods you are looking at a total cost of up to €5,280! Reusable products can last up to 10 years, so even when you consider the cost of replacing your menstrual cup and cloth sanitary pads, you won’t even come close to the cost of disposables.
3. Lower environmental impact than disposables
One woman can generate 125 - 150 kilograms of disposable sanitary waste during her lifetime! With about 1.9 billion women of menstruating age on our planet, the mountains upon mountains of waste are simply unimaginable. In addition to those tons of disposable pads and tampons taking several hundred years to breakdown in landfill, it also takes resources to produce them, which inevitably creates even more pollution. While cloth sanitary pads and menstrual cups also create pollution during production, it is minimal, and they last for up to 10 years, while a tampon or disposable pad doesn’t even last 10 hours.
4. Healthier lifestyle
Did you know that one disposable sanitary pad contains the equivalent of four plastic bags? This doesn’t just come with a lot of discomfort but also with all the common toxins found in plastic. The list includes BPA, BPS, and Phthalates, which are absorbed through your skin. In addition to this, tampons and disposable pads are also bleached with chlorine bleach. This can create toxic dioxin, which is linked to abnormal cell growth, hormonal disruption, and other serious health issues. Over your lifetime you spend about 16.5 years menstruating. That is an awfully long time spent skin-on-skin with harsh chemicals!
Reusable sanitary products, are either made from organic fabric or completely safe material, ensure you are not just comfortable but also healthy throughout your period.
Reusable Sanitary Products: Your Options & How They Work
1. Reusable Sanitary Pads
Cloth Pads like these organic cotton Popolini ones are easy to use, comfortable and reliable. You choose between different fabrics, shapes, and sizes to suit your individual needs. The most common fabrics used include organic cotton, bamboo, and hemp. All of which are soft, natural and absorbent materials.
While liners are perfect for lighter days or in combination with a menstrual cup, your heavier days are covered with regular and heavy pads, which offer more absorbency. Night-time pads guarantee perfect protection for several hours - so you can enjoy a restful night‘s sleep without having to worry about leakages. A lot of manufacturers even produce extra long and absorbent postpartum pads, which make those first few weeks after giving birth a lot more comfortable!
Once used, rinse your pad with a bit of cold water and pop in a small wetbag until you are ready to wash. Pads can be washed on their own or with your usual laundry – whatever you prefer. Just open your wetbag and place it in your washing machine. The movement of the machine will empty your wetbag, so no need to empty it by hand!
We recommend a cold rinse cycle before you add other laundry and put on a 60° wash. Line dry or tumble dry on a low setting – and ta-da, you’re finished and ready to go again next time!
2. Menstrual Cups
A menstrual cup like the bestselling Organicup is a small flexible cup made out of medical grade silicone. Very fine holes near the rim of the cup will cause a tiny bit of suction to create a leak-proof seal once inserted. Since the cup doesn’t absorb but simply collects your period, there is no irritation or dryness, and the risk of Toxic Shock Syndrom (TTS) hardly exists. The use of a menstrual cup is also known to reduce the intensity and longevity of menstruation as well as the dreaded pain!
It’s recommended to empty your cup every 12 hours, on heavier days you might need to empty once or twice in between. It can take a couple of goes until you get the hang of it, but once you do you will hardly know you are on your period at all!
During your period it is sufficient to rinse your cup every time you empty it. Once you're finished, it is recommended to sterilise it using either a microwave sterilising pot or simply boil it in a pot of water.
Have a read of some of the reviews on our website and see for yourself – you will revolutionise your period and wonder why you didn’t start using one years ago!
3. Combination of Reusable Pads & Menstrual Cup
A lot of people opt for a mix of cloth sanitary pads and a menstrual cup. In the beginning it can give you peace of mind to wear a pad in addition to your cup when you are out and about or for nighttime. On lighter days, the cup on it’s own might be your preferred option.
Whichever option you choose, reusable sanitary products will be a life-changer for you! Have a better look here at our full range. Any tips that we've missed?