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Eco-Friendly Period Products: A Comprehensive Guide

Different types of eco-friendly period products

Everything You Need to Know About Eco-Friendly Period Products

Average reading time: 11 minutes


Period products. Half of the population use them but we don't all know about the health and environmental impact we might be having. On average, an individual who has periods has 456 periods in their lifetime, and uses 9,000+ menstrual products, spending a whopping £4,000-4500.

Bring in the eco-friendly period products.

There is an alternative to continually spending money on tampons and pads. In this guide, we'll be covering everything you need to know about eco-friendly period products, including the different types and their positives and negatives. 



 The Benefits Of Eco-Friendly Period Products

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The Different Types of Eco-Friendly Period Products

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The Positives And Negatives Of Eco-Friendly Period Products

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Where to Buy Eco-Friendly Period Products?

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How To Choose The Right Eco-Friendly Period Products For You

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How Much Money Do You Save By Using Eco-Friendly Period Products? Skip to Section

Tips For Using And Caring For Eco-Friendly Period Products

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What Is The Impact Of Using Eco-Friendly Period Products?

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The benefits of eco-friendly period products

Eco-friendly period products offer so many different benefits, not only for you but also the environment.

Traditional disposable pads and tampons are made from synthetic materials that can take hundreds of years to decompose in landfills, which lead to pollution of the environment. Plus, eco-friendly period options like reusable period pads, period cups and period pants are made from natural materials that can be reused and are often actually safer for our bodies.

It helps that reusable period products are also more cost-effective, saving you so much money over time. See our table on the saving you could make.


The different types of eco-friendly period products

Move over disposable pads and tampons, these eco-friendly period products are better for us and the planet. In this blog we'll be talking about the pros and cons of each of these eco period products and where you can buy them.

  • Period cups
  • Reusable period pads
  • Period pants
  • Organic tampons and pads

The positives and negatives of eco-friendly period products

Period Cups

Period cups are a small, bell-shaped silicone or rubber cups. that is inserted to collect menstrual fluid. In a similar way to tampons, they are inserted to collect menstrual blood, however they sit lower, right below the cervix.

Positives of Period Cups

🌍 Environmentally friendly: They are reusable for many years, producing so much less waste than disposable pads and tampons.

💵 Cost effective: The start up cost is higher than a box of tampons but they last for up to 10 years, making them much cheaper in the long-term.

⏱️ Convenience: A period cups can be worn for up to 12 hours without being changed, making them much more convenient than menstrual pads.

💃 Comfort: It's often said that menstrual cups are so comfortable you forget you are even wearing one!

🏥 Healthier: Period cups are made from medical-grade silicone or latex and do not contain chemicals or fragrances that can irritate the skin.

Negatives of Period Cups

💡 Learning curve: It can take some time to get the hang of using a period cup, especially for those who are used to using disposable products.

💧 Cleaning: Menstrual cups require cleaning between uses, which isn't always the easiest in public toilets without a basin or other shared space.

📏 Sizing: Period cups come in various sizes, and finding the right fit isn't always obvious. Some brands use A and B cups sizes, B for if you've given birth naturally but it can be trial and error.

🍷 Messy: Emptying and cleaning a period cup can be messy so isn't the best option if you're squeamish!


Reusable Period Pads

Reusable period pads are washable cloth pads that are an alternative to disposable pads. They're made from a soft absorbent material like cotton or bamboo and come in different sizes and thicknesses, just like disposable pads.

Positives of Reusable Period Pads

🌍 Eco-friendly: Reusable period pads are washable and reusable for up to 5 years.

💵 Cost-effective: As you only have to buy them once, even though the initial cost is more, they save money in the long term. 

💃 Comfortable: Reusable cloth pads are made from soft and breathable materials, which can be more comfortable than disposable pads.

🦋 Stylish: Reusable menstrual pads come in lots of different designs so you can choose a design you like.

💀 Non-toxic: Unlike some disposable pads that contain chemicals and fragrances, reusable period pads are made from natural materials that are free of harmful chemicals.

Negatives of Reusable Period Pads

🧺 Laundry: Reusable menstrual pads need to be washed after each use. This can be inconvenient and more time consuming. 

🍷 Staining: They can stain over time. They best way to avoid this is to soak them after use and before washing.

🐑 Bulkiness: Reusable pads can be thicker and bulkier than disposable pads. This might be uncomfortable for some people.  

😴 Shifting: Some say that reusable pads can move around when sleeping, so it's best to pair them with another alternative like period pants.

Period Pants

Period pants are absorbent underwear, made from breathable, moisture-wicking fabrics. Menstrual underwear is designed to be washed and reused. 

Positives of Period Pants

🌍 Environmentally friendly: Period pants are reusable and can be worn for multiple cycles. This really reuses waste from disposable products.

💵 Cost-effective: It is more expensive to buy a set of period underwear initially but over time, they will save you money.

⏱️ Convenient: Period pants can be worn for up to 12 hours without needing to be changed, they can also be used for incontinence.

💃 Comfortable: Period pants are made from soft and breathable materials, and feel similar to normal underwear. This makes them perfect for younger girls who are just starting their period.

🦋 Stylish: They come in lots of different designs and colours to suit every style, body shape and age.

Negatives of Period Pants

🍷 Limited absorbency: Period underwear may not be suitable for people with heavy flows or those who experience leaks as they may have to change throughout the day.

🐑 Bulkiness: Period underwear can be thicker and bulkier than regular underwear. However there are lots of different styles to choose from to suit your preferences.

💧 Cleaning: Period pants need to be washed after each use which isn't as convenient as throwing them away. 

Organic Tampons and Pads

Organic tampons and pads are similar to ordinary disposable menstrual products but made from organic cotton or bamboo, that - unlike the alternative - are biodegradable and compostable.

Positives of Organic Tampons and Pads

💀 Non-toxic: Organic tampons and pads are made from natural and chemical-free materials, which can be gentler on the skin and reduce the risk of irritation or allergic reactions.

🌍 Eco-friendly: Organic tampons and pads are often made from biodegradable or compostable materials, reducing the environmental impact of disposable period products.

💃 Comfortable: Organic tampons and pads are typically made from soft and breathable materials, which can be more comfortable than non-organic options.

🧵 Quality: They are often produced with higher quality materials and manufacturing processes, which can result in a better overall product.

Negatives of Organic Tampons and Pads

🛒 Availability: Organic tampons and pads may not be widely available in all shops and regions.

💵 Cost: Organic tampons and pads can be slightly more expensive than non-organic options.

📏 Limited options: Organic tampons and pads are more limited in terms of size and style options.

Where can you find eco-friendly period products?

Where can you buy period cups? 


Mooncup menstrual cup

Best highly rated period cup

The original silicone menstrual cup, Mooncup is comfortable, convenient and reliable.



AllMatters menstrual cup

Best for different period cup sizes

AllMatters are a B-Corp whose period cups come in 3 different sizes to suit every body, from teenager to post-giving birth vaginally.



Lunette menstrual cup

Best for brightly coloured period cups

Lunette create colourful period cups and use some of their profits to educate worldwide about periods. 



Where can you buy reusable period pads?

Cheeky Wipes

Cheeky Wipes reusable period pads

Best for unique period pad designs

Cheeky Wipes have been in the reusables industry since 2008. They're a market leader, trusted by thousands of people every month. 



Wuka reusable period pads

Best period pad for heavy flows

Wuka create period pads with offcuts from their period pants. Their reusable pads can be worn overnight without any leaks.



Bambaw reusable period pads

Best period pads for beginners

Bambaw reusable pads start-up packs are perfect for beginners with multiple pads and a discreet leak-proof pouch.



Where can you buy period pants?


Wuka reusable period pants

Best period pants designs 

Wuka has unique period pants designs for all ages and styles including thongs to fuller coverage.



Fluxies reusable period pants

Best period pants for comfort

Made from the best materials like Tencel, Fluxies period pants do not compromise on comfort.



ModiBodi reusable period pants

Best for leakproof protection

ModiBodi's period pants are highly functional, keep whatever's happening in your pants, in your pants.



Where can you buy organic tampons and pads?


Daye organic tampons

Best for period cramps

Daye's tampons are available coated with medical grade CBD to soothe period cramps, and their packaging is water-soluble.


Grace & Green

Grace & Green organic menstrual pads

Best for comfort & ultra-protection

With pads made from organic bamboo, a plant that can grow 3ft per day, Grace & Green have strong sustainability credentials.



How to choose the right eco-friendly period products for you

It can be overwhelming, choosing the right eco-friendly period product for you. There are lots of different options but with some consideration and research, you will be able to find the right fit.

Here are some tips to help you with your choice.

  1. Consider your flow, lifestyle, and personal preferences when choosing an eco-friendly period product. For example, if you want to use one product for up to 12 hours, consider opting for a period cup or period pants.
  2. Consider factors such as the materials used, absorbency, cost, and convenience. The tips above on the pros and cons of each type of eco period product should help with this.
  3. Try a few different options before settling on one. It can be trial and error to find the perfect option for you, but once you've found it, there's no going back!
  4. What is your lifestyle like? If you lead an active lifestyle, you may want to choose a product that is more secure and stays in place during physical activity like organic tampons, period underwear or a menstrual cup.
  5. Reading reviews can be a really useful way to see which products have worked for others and why.
  6. Think about the environmental impact of the product and how they'll help you to reduce your personal impact.


How much money do you save by using eco-friendly period products?

Money savings by using eco-friendly menstrual products


Tips for using and caring for eco-friendly period products

Using and caring for eco-friendly period products can be slightly different than using traditional disposable products. Make sure you read the instructions, they will give you all the information you need to wash your period products correctly. Some need to hand-washed, boiled, soaked or even washed in cold water to keep their effectiveness. For example, period pants shouldn't be washed with fabric softener as this can limit their effectiveness over time. 

You should also store the product correctly, in a dry and clean place between uses. Some product will come in a bag or storage container to help with this. 

What is the impact of using eco-friendly period products?

Using eco-friendly period products can have a significant positive impact on both the environment and your health. 

Using disposable menstrual products creates a huge amount of waste, with around 10-20 pads being used and disposed of each period and going straight into landfill or being incinerated. Eco-friendly alternatives that are reusable can be used for years, really reducing the amount of waste you'd produce on your period. 

Using reusables can also save you lots of money. While they may have a higher upfront cost, you only need to buy them once, lasting between 2-10 years. This really reduced the cost from purchasing disposable products regularly. 

You can also reduce your chemical and fragrance exposure by using eco alternatives as eco products are made from natural materials without harmful chemicals.

Eco-friendly period products are usually made by smaller business helping to empower women and using sustainable practices. By switching to eco-period alternatives, you can support small local businesses and help the environment at the same time.

There really are so many positive reasons for switching to environmentally-friendly period products. 


Which is worse for the environment, pads or tampons?

Both pads and tampons have a significant impact on the environment. 

Disposable pads are often made with plastic, which is not biodegradable and can take hundreds of years to decompose in landfills. Tampons, on the other hand, are generally made with cotton, which is a natural material that can biodegrade more easily.

However, the production of cotton requires a significant amount of water and pesticides, which can have environmental impacts. Both tampons and pads have a negative impact on the environment, but using eco-friendly and reusable options, such as period cups and cloth pads, can significantly reduce that impact.

How can I make my periods eco-friendly?

There are lots of ways to make your periods more eco-friendly, like switching to reusable period products like period cups, period underwear or reusable pads. If you're not ready for a switch to reusables, you could switch to pads or tampons made using organic and biodegradable materials too.

How many years does it take for a period pad to decompose?

Disposable period pads are usually made with plastic materials, which are not biodegradable and can take hundreds of years to decompose in landfills. In fact, a single pad can take up to 500 years to break down completely. This means that the pads used during a person's lifetime will likely still be sitting in landfills long after they are gone. 

Do natural pads shorten your period?

There is no evidence to suggest that natural pads can shorten your period. A period is a natural biological process that is controlled by hormonal changes in your body. The length and duration of your period is determined by your own body and can't be influenced by the type of menstrual product that you're using. Opt for one that is the most comfortable for you! 


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