Many campaigners are working to take the plastic out of periods because disposable products are a potential health hazard, cause pollution of our beaches and oceans when thrown away and also cost us nearly £5,000 over our menstruating years.
You might be surprised to discover that menstrual products are the fifth most common item found on European beaches. They are more prolific than single use coffee cups. Or that 2.5 million tampons are flushed down the loo every day, in the UK alone.
Switching to a reusable product can save up to 94% of spend on disposables.
Here’s some of my favourites:
THE MENSTRUAL CUP
I love my – I’ve had it for years and it’s effective, simple and easy to use. I’ve not had problems with leaking or discomfort and I’ve been using one for around 20 years. Check out Sophie Hellyer’s TED Talk where she gets her mooncup out on stage nd also powerfully rifts on cutting out single use plastic).
I’ve also tried a , which is made with fairtrade rubber - I like that they come in four different sizes to accommodate light to super heavy flow. Again, easy to use and I gotta say I love collecting my blood in a little cup! Surprisingly pleasing! And great for the plants. There’s also (they offer a three month trial and refund if you don’t get on with it) and .
THE REUSABLE PAD
These have become quite exciting items in recent years, made with a gorgeous array of fabrics and yummy textiles. I love the ones at , made from recycled plastic water bottles. Try also and . These can be stuck in a normal wash or soaked first to bring them out a bit whiter. I love the soft feel of a washable pad, after the harsh plastic feel of a normal one.
THE PERIOD PANTS
I’ve not tried these yet but have heard rave reviews – they can last for up to two years! And you can just stick them in the wash with a regular load (I soak my pads). Try brands like , , and . I’m going to try these out in the next couple of months so I’ll let you know how effective they are!
There’s also menstrual sponges available made from natural unbleached sea sponges. I’ve tried these and I love the feel and the texture of them but they don’t work for my current heavy flow. Check out brands such as and .
• Get in tune with your cycle (and more in control of your life) with my new Cycle Tracking Goddess Guide - you can download here.
I’d love to hear from you. What do you use and why?