There's no doubt about it. Periods are not fun. For anyone. They are one of many incredible processes our body was designed to perform, but they can definitely put a damper on your day. Not to mention they can be costly and wasteful.
No one really teaches you about better alternatives to feminine care. In the USA the default choices are pads or tampons. Usually they are chosen based on cost and little attention is given to the materials, the potential chemicals, and the waste that they can produce.
If you're trying to live a zero waste lifestyle or lower your waste in general here are some ideas to have a low or zero waste period. Let's start with the easiest switches..
1. Try Organic Cotton Tampons Without Applicators | Low Waste Periods
Organic cotton tampons without applicators are a step in the right direction - no bleaches, toxins, fragrance or pesticides from growing the cotton.
A Few Organic Cotton Tampon Options:
2. Try Organic Cotton Menstrual Pads | Low Waste Periods
For those who prefer menstrual pads, try switching to an organic cotton menstrual pad choice. They can be wrapped in cloth instead of plastic.
Menstrual pads are difficult because they often contain some type of plastic to make them "leakproof".
One step at a time is a great way to go, though. Don't feel overwhelmed!
A Few Organic Cotton Menstrual Pad Options:
Here's where things really get fun!
A variety of companies on Amazon as well as handmade markets like Etsy offer reusable tampons. Some people use sea sponges (on Etsy) , washable merino wool tampons(on Etsy) or organic cotton tampons. (on Etsy)
A Few Sea Pearl Sponge Tampon Options:
Of course you can also find reusable menstrual pads on Amazon and Etsy as well!
These items can be thrown in your washer and reused each month - drastically cutting down your waste. They also cut down on your expenses as you are no longer buying disposable products every month. You invest in a set one month and they will last for years to come.
A Few Reusable Menstrual Pad Options:
Period Panties, Period Underwear, Menstrual Underwear... There are many names for this product. They have basically a panty-liner built in. So you can wear these panties and then wash them just as you would if you had purchased washable menstrual pads. I think most people use these in combination with any of the other options on the list, but some may be able to wear them alone! You can find them on Amazon and Etsy, too!
A Few Period Panty Options:
Menstrual Cups are an excellent option for a zero waste period. While there is a learning curve, once you figure it out you will never go back! For as little as $10 you can purchase one and reuse it for years to come! Would you try using one? I bought mine on amazon, but I was surprised to see they are alsofor sale on Etsy as well if you would like to support a smaller business!
A Few Menstrual Cup Options:
As you can see, there are a variety of options to lower your waste each month. Eliminating plastic packaging and applicators is a great start and using better-for-you materials like organic cotton is a win. If you're feeling adventurous to try washable pads or tampons let me know how it goes. But I really hope you'll give the menstrual cup a solid shot (at least 2 cycles) because you'll save so much packing waste and money waste if you make the switch!
Stay tuned for more low waste and zero waste lifestyle tips!
What is Low Waste Living / The Zero Waste Lifestyle?
The concept is simple: Try to send as little to a landfill as possible. Streamline your lifestyle so you need less products and less packaging. Reuse as much as possible and if it can't be reused at least choose recyclable options if at all possible. Also - compost!
Reduce, Reuse, Recycle is a known phrase. Simple, yet profound.
1. Reduce what you purchase to start with
2. Reuse everything you can and if you can't reuse it consider donating it so someone else can
3. THEN recycle or compost the rest!
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