Modern menstrual pads have definitely made the red days easier to manage, but they come with a price.
An average woman uses over 16,000 pads in her whole lifetime – and think about this – the very first pad you’ve used on your first period is still floating around somewhere. Menstrual pads contain plastics that take more than one lifetime to break down, making them potent pollutants to our environment.
With their plastic component and few other potentially hazardous ingredients such as odor neutralizers, they can cause a few problems such as yeast growth and bacterial infections in your vaginal area. Let’s not even begin talking about the potential dangers of tampon use.
If you’ve been wanting to #MakeTheSwitch but don’t know where to start, then here are some healthy and eco-friendly alternatives to disposable menstrual pads:
This is perhaps the most intimidating alternative, but one many women swear by. A menstrual cup is exactly that – a reusable, soft cup that fits inside the vaginal canal to collect menstrual flow. If you manage to find the right size for you, their leak-proof and once they’re in you can barely tell you have your period! Plus, you can wear them safely for as long as 12 to 24 hours.
There is definitely a learning curve in using a menstrual cup but once you get used to it, you’ll never look back to pads ever again. Wellness Mama has a detailed post on the ins and outs of the menstrual cup journey here.
If you’re a little apprehensive about the thought of inserting a menstrual cup inside of you, reusable cloth pads are another eco-friendly and healthy option to disposables. They are way more comfortable than plastic-based pads and have waterproof liners that protect leaks and accidents on your clothing.
They are more absorbent and stay in place better than disposable pads. Perhaps the only downside is that you have to wash them. You can get them from zero-waste shops in your area or online.
You’ve probably never heard of this, but yes, you can use sea sponges to sop up your monthly period. They also come in different sizes and are easier to insert compared to menstrual cups. They’re widely available on Amazon.
If you want to stick with the convenient disposable menstrual pads, at least check the label and choose the natural or organic ones. They come in about the same price as the regular pads, but kinder to the environment. The Rael brand is a popular option made with 100% organic cotton cover.
Read the full article by Wellness Mama here for more reasons to switch to healthy and eco-friendly alternatives to disposable menstrual pads.