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Zero Waste would be an amazing achievement , but even if we all took a few small steps, the impact on our environment would be huge. But what would it take to have a zero waste period?
Zero Waste Period
Flushing sanitary waste down the toilet has been having a devastating effect on marine life. Here in the UK, a huge congealed mass of Fatberg (the length of 2 football pitches) containing sanitary waste, wet wipes and nappies was found in a London sewer. Yuck! – and that’s just in one city, so what effect is this type of waste having world wide?
Most women who use disposable sanitary products will throw away over 10,000 of these in her lifetime. Sanitary waste has such a detrimental impact on the environment, with sanitary pads taking as long as 500 years to fully decompose.
However, we now have some great alternatives on the market, products that are not only better for our environment, but also healthier for us too. The great news is they are also so much cheaper too – research says most women will spend around £10,000 in their lifetime on sanitary products, so I’m delighted to report I have found alternatives that are lower in cost and work well too!
Menstrual cups are different to tampons as they don’t absorb the blood – they hold it. They are made of medical grade silicone and stay in place using suction. I’ve been using a mooncup for a while but things have really moved on recently, and there are now lots of different options on the market.
In the first few days my period is very heavy, so I’ve been using a new menstrual cup. I love this cup as it is bigger and holds much more, in fact this cup holds 2 super tampons worth of blood! This means no worrying about leaks (which I always had using tampons,) when I am out and about, or when I’m busy at work.
This cup is so comfortable. the rim sits on the vaginal wall applying a bit of pressure, so it also helps reduce cramps. YES! Menstrual cups can help reduce cramps, (which I always suffered from before when using traditional products.) This menstrual cup is incredible value, and also comes in this pretty pouch, so it’s very easy to just pop in your handbag, or pocket and carry around.
Disposable pads are a bit of a problem, so many end up in landfill or in the ocean, so by moving over to reusable pads, we really are reducing our impact. It’s just a case of finding the right alternative that works for you.
Organic pads are made of 100% certificated organic cotton without chemicals. They are ideal for women who have a sensitive skin or skin allergy. I find them feel so comfortable to wear and they have no itching against your skin. Simply rinse after use, then they wash up easily in the washing machine.
These reusable pads are from Cloth Mama. Aren’t the patterns on the back so cute – they really cheer me up at this time of the month! The back is waterproof and I love that they fit round my pants easily and securely clip into place. Bamboo charcoal fiber middle layer is antibacterial, healthy and soft for your skin.
I find now I’ve changed menstrual cups I don’t get much leakage, but the first couple of days when I have my heaviest flow I wear these as a bit of extra protection.
These are great especially when I’m in bed, or at work and don’t have always have the time to keep changing. They are a perfect fit and wash well too. Simply rinse them out when you’ve used them, then wash at 40 degrees and line dry, and they are good to go again!
The pads are all made from renewable and sustainable resources, which contribute to the health of the planet and environment.
Zero Waste Pants
I always have a set of pants I call my period pants so I think these are a must have. These Wuka pants are super stylish and look so much better than my Bridget Jones style period pants! Wuka pants are great for women who don’t have access to private toilet facilities, perhaps at school or work, and they also save the embarrassment of taking your handbag to the toilet, (which is always a bit cringe!) These pants are also great for sporty women and there is no embarrassing bulge either.
Wuka pants hold up to 4 tampons worth of blood and can last up to 8 hours without changing. Simply machine wash at 40 degrees, line dry and they can be reused again and again. These retail at £24.99 and you can purchase a pair here.
If you’ve been having a zero waste period for a while, you know how much money you’ve saved on not having to buy tampons and pads all the time. If not, what do you think, will you try any of these products?
Have you already found products you like using – let me know in the comments below!
Here is some other ways you can reach zero waste in the bathroom.