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I was with my friend, Emily, a few years ago getting lunch at Whole Foods when she mentioned it was time for a new menstrual cup. Hers was about ten years old and it was starting to show signs of needing to be replaced.
I was only about two months into my organic lifestyle journey so I had no clue what she was talking about. Going with her exposed me to a whole other way of managing that lovely time of month.
Organic tampons (which now make complete sense but I had never even thought about), cloth pads, menstrual cups- there were all kind of sustainable, organic options to consider. That evening I went home and did a bit of research before ordering some reusable pads myself.
Stop Using These Menstrual Products
Since everything we touch or put into our bodies gets absorbed, it is especially important to be aware of the possible effects of having chemicals so close to our reproductive organics.
The vaginal tissue is especially absorbent so it makes sense that anything placed down there, internally and externally, can impact our reproductive organs.
Most conventional tampons and menstrual pads are made from conventionally grown cotton which is often genetically engineered and grown with pesticides. They are often covered in plastic containing BPA and then bleached. Sadly, all of these chemicals can have been linked to cancer, endocrine disruption, and infertility.
The best way to protect yourself is to stop using those items and switch to safer, organic options listed below.
Toxin-Free Menstrual Products
Switching to organic and reusable products is an easy but highly effective way to prevent toxin exposure in one of the most absorbent areas or our bodies.
Many women have even reported lighter, less painful periods after they stopped using conventional products (and a few reported the same effects when they stopped using tampons in general).
Some of the most common options for menstrual products include:
(Links listed are clickable so you can explore your options)
A couple of other alternatives include Thinx period panties and sea sponge tampons.
They’re washable and reusable. It looks like the upfront costs are a bit steep but from the three women I talked to, they definitely feel it’s a great investment.
Making the Switch
Switching from conventional menstrual products to natural menstrual products can take a little bit of adjustment and trial and error. Some tampons may absorb at a different rate, you may have to find the right size or brand of menstrual cups (some are more firm than others), or you may have to try a couple of different reusable pad sizes before finding the right one.
However, the benefits of making such a switch including decreasing the chemicals you are exposed to and limiting the amount of waste we send to landfills is immeasurable and definitely makes it worth it!
What about you? Do you currently use any reusable or natural menstrual products? If so, and you’ve comfortable sharing, post your experience below!