Single-use elastics or SUPs are used once, or for a short period before being thrown away. This is typically used in bottles, bags, and food containers. But what does it have to do with menstrual products? Well, your conventional sanitary pad is about 90% plastic and plastic derivatives, which is equal to almost 4 polythene bags. So, it is now that menstrual products are going under the radar, with disposables often not recognized publicly as a source of single-use elastic. Awareness of sustainability encourages consumers to make a conscious choice while buying products to use in their daily life.
Historically, women felt that menstruation was something to be ashamed of, a feeling that is still prevalent in society and popular culture today. And it is this taboo that creates a difficult arena for discussion of more sustainable alternatives. It is also the desire of companies to make a profit that explains why disposables have become more popular than reusables. They have a higher commodity potential than reusables because the consumer has to re-purchase them regularly, whereas a menstrual cup for example can last up to 10 years. Around 1.8 billion people in the world menstruate and an individual uses between 5,000 to 15,000 pads and tampons in a lifetime so, just imagine the waste generated and that too non-sustainable. This can be reduced by choosing alternatives and making a conscious.
The Menstrual Cup
You’ve probably seen this product many times in the feminine hygiene aisle and had a million questions about it. How do I use it? Does it leak? Would it hurt? So, here is the deal, these cups are typically made of medical-grade silicone and can be folded and inserted into the vaginal canal to collect menstrual blood. And no, it doesn’t usually leak because the cup can hold period blood for a good amount of time. Getting used to a menstrual cup might take a few tries but it doesn’t hurt at all when inserted with the right technique. It is neither absorbent nor capable of causing scratches in the vagina. Everyone is a little nervous about the mess and if it would be difficult to use. But after they try it there is no going back. You don’t have to worry about replacing it or exposing your body to chemicals. Also, the most common misconception, IT DOESN’T GET LOST. The vaginal canal is only about four to six inches long and a menstrual cup isn’t supposed to be inserted deeply as a tampon and which will make it easier to remove.
Everyone is skeptical when you think about sitting around all day while bleeding all over. But that’s not the case here. These panties are made of super absorbent, super-washable fabric, so you don’t have to worry about leaks or bleeding through them. It’s just a matter of opening your mind. The best part is that you feel completely normal when on your period, there is no foreign object on or in your vagina, no irritation, and no need to worry about pad changes. It’s easy to use as well, just hop them on like your regular underwear when your period starts and make sure to change them every 12 hours. x
Sustainable Pads and Tampons
Say goodbye to harmful chemicals and fragrances, and hello to clean, organic ingredients. The biodegradable pads and tampons are made only from organic cotton and don’t contain any rayon, plastics, or synthetic fibers that are usually found in these types of products. Ultra-thin pads are made with super absorbent bamboo, while the applicator-free tampons are wrapped in a compostable package and are 100% cotton. Thus, making it a much better option to stay on a sustainable period cycle.
It is clear that awareness of the topic should be improved, if taboos associated with menstruation can be tackled, then perhaps there is a chance of reducing the environmental impact that menstrual products have on our world. It won’t just be an easy road but this journey is ours and there is a chance to make a change happen. Here are some kind suggestions to switch from all the nasties.