Have you ever considered having a sustainable period?
Going green doesn’t mean compromising on hygiene and comfort
The monthly business of menstruation is a breeze for some, for others, it’s more of a battle. We’re so bloated that we’re waddling around like penguins, too sore and cranky to give a thought to hunting down sustainable period products.
Understandably, we’re thinking about whether we can have another Meftal Spas — not about where our sanitary waste is going.
But as the conversation around climate change and waste management grows, we acknowledge the need for a more sustainable period.
Most commercial sanitary napkins are made using plastic and non-biodegradable materials that take about 500-900 years to decompose. The first-ever sanitary napkin to be used is probably still lying out there somewhere, quite intact.
We hunted down products from sanitary napkins and tampons made from compostable natural fibres to ‘period panties’ and menstrual cups, that allow you to have a sustainable period without compromising on hygiene or comfort.
Sustainable period products: Biodegradable sanitary pads
OK, these aren’t as easily available as just going down the road to the chemistwale bhaiya. It takes extra planning.
Sanitary napkins, tampons and panty liners, such as the ones made by Carmesi, Heyday, Saathi and Sparkle, tap into the natural benefits of fibres like banana, bamboo and corn. They’re free of bleach and irritating fragrances, without compromising on hygiene and effectiveness.
Make sure you wash and dry it properly and follow the usage instructions. Some can be used for up to three years, while others advise being replaced after one year.
View this post on Instagram
Using a menstrual cup sounds a lot more intimidating than it is. It just takes a bit of practice.
The standard train of thought when experimenting with the cup goes something like: “urgh, come on, gross, f#%k”. But once you’ve got the insertion and removal technique down — and made your peace with a few hiccups along the way — you’ll wonder why you didn’t try it sooner.
As long as you keep them clean and sterilised, menstrual cups may be the most cost-effective option among the bunch.
They’re just as safe and effective as sanitary pads and tampons – public health studies have verified it – while also reducing waste and water usage.
A municipality in Kerala was even giving them out for free.
If you’re imagining an adult diaper, stop. ‘Period panties’ are essentially underwear made using absorbent materials that trap your flow. No other product needed.
If you have a heavy flow, these might not work – except as an added guard against leakage and stains. They’re ideal for the first and last days of your menstrual cycle if you have a normal flow. If your flow is weak, then you’re pretty set.
It’s quite an investment because they’re pricier than your average underwear, but they’re comfortable to wear and easy to use.
If you rely on just the panties, then you’ll need a few to get you through your period days, keeping the washing and drying process in mind.
Sidenote: They’re also very useful if you’re suffering from mild incontinence post-childbirth due to a weak pelvic floor.