Menstruation: 6 alternatives to disposable pads, tampons and panty liners

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Carlos Laforet Coll
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Those who want to stop using common sanitary pads or try to reduce their use can turn to one of these eco-friendly menstrual products

The alternatives to sanitary towels and towels are now more and more known and widespread disposable tampons for use during menstruation. Those who want to stop using common sanitary pads or in any case try to reduce their use can turn to one of the eco-friendly menstrual products designed to protect the environment and health.

The most famous product is probably the menstrual cup, but those who do not feel like trying it for the moment can still experience something different, starting, for example, with pads and washable and reusable panty liners, or underwear for your period.

Le alternatives to disposable pads they help us reduce waste and take better care of our hygiene during menstruation. Living the days of your period in a more conscious way is a precious help for health and to feel better. Here are the eco-friendly alternatives for period days.


Menstrual cup

La menstrual cup it is now the most popular alternative to disposable pads, both external and internal. We have already told you about the main reasons to start using the menstrual cup. The menstrual cup allows you to reduce waste, save money, move more freely, take better care of your hygiene during your cycle and feel more comfortable at the sea, in the pool, in the gym and during sports activities. Just keep in mind the common rules of hygiene to use the menstrual cup to the best and without problems.

Recent research published in the Lancet Public Health journal, which examined 43 studies involving 3.300 women and girls living in different countries around the world, gives us scientific proof that menstrual cups are as safe and reliable as disposable pads.

Washable sanitary pads

Washable pads can easily replace disposable pads or panty liners according to your needs. Exist sanitary napkins and washable panty liners in different formats and with various degrees of absorbency, depending on the brands and who produces them. It is also possible to make and sew washable sanitary napkins or panty liners by hand. Washable sanitary pads are easily found for sale on the web and some products adhere to projects to support better menstrual hygiene for girls and women who live in poor countries and who are forced to be absent from school or work during their periods because they do not have suitable protections available.

To learn a make a washable sanitary napkin by hand, watch this video.

Washable absorbent underwear

© Thinx

Some companies attentive to women's menstrual health and environmental protection have decided to sell, in addition to washable sanitary pads and menstrual cups, special panties suitable for absorbing the flow during the days of menstruation. Thanks to the washable absorbent panties there is no need to use other protections. Apparently the slip for the cycle they are identical to normal underwear but in reality they are composed of three breathable layers: the central layer has the task of absorb menstrual flow, while the one in contact with the skin is in pure cotton and the outermost one can be in cotton or Lycra, depending on the model. Among the washable absorbent panties on sale we find the proposals of Cocoro, Thinx and Revol Girl. Underwear for the cycle can be washed by hand or in the washing machine at the temperatures indicated on the label without using fabric softener. After washing, they dry in the air, avoiding the use of the dryer.

Menstrual disc


© Lumma Unique

The menstrual disc adapts perfectly to the body and allows you to collect the menstrual flow without causing loss, discomfort and irritation. Alternative to the silicone cup, it can also be worn for several hours a day during the cycle, but compared to the cup, the disc body is softer, less roomy and slightly flattened in shape, so as to allow use even during sexual intercourse . Here all the information on the menstrual disc.

Absorbents and compostable pads


There are lines of disposable but biodegradable sanitary pads and tampons on the market. Absorbents and pads free of super-absorbent powders, perfumes, plastic fibers or even chlorine, completely made of certified organic cotton. An answer to the needs of all those women who, while failing to move towards reusable products such as menstrual cups, want a product that is as environmentally friendly as possible, but also hypoallergenic and breathable.

Soft sponge pads and pads

A final alternative to sanitary towels and disposable tampons is represented by natural sponges and by soft sponge pads. A little online research is enough to find these products. The sponge pads and sponges should be rinsed and washed with cold water. The replacement frequency varies with the flow. The size of the reusable pads and sponges changes according to the flow. Here and here more information.

Have you tried any of these alternatives yet?

Read also:

  • Menstrual cups: they are effective and safe. Confirmation in a laboratory test

  • Menstrual cups are safe and reliable, that's why say goodbye to sanitary pads

  • The most common excuses for not using the menstrual cup

  • Underwear for the cycle: lingerie to say goodbye to tampons, sanitary pads and panty liners

  • MoonCup menstrual cups: the product test

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