Facts remain facts: used pads will sur­vive not only us, but also our great-grand­chil­dren. All because they decom­pose for hun­dreds of thou­sands of years. But what to do? How to replace pads and tam­pons if you want to live more eco­log­i­cal­ly? We know the answer!

menstrual cup


Menstrual cup

Despite the fact that men­stru­al cups have exist­ed for a long time, many peo­ple do not even know about them. It is grat­i­fy­ing that recent­ly they are becom­ing more and more pop­u­lar, and inter­est in them goes far beyond zero-waste com­mu­ni­ties. Let’s fig­ure out togeth­er what it is and what are its advan­tages.

What is the menstrual cup made of?

This device is a small con­tain­er or bar­ri­er that is placed in the vagi­na to col­lect dis­charge. They are soft and flex­i­ble, dis­pos­able (which is not very envi­ron­men­tal­ly friend­ly, but con­ve­nient), and reusable, made of latex, med­ical sil­i­cone or oth­er mate­r­i­al.

There are small and large sizes, and also have dif­fer­ent forms of “tail”. And basi­cal­ly they are all the same.

How to use a menstrual cup

Every­thing is sim­ple, and not very:

  • Before the first use, boil the men­stru­al cup in clean water for five min­utes.
  • Before the pro­ce­dure, wash your hands thor­ough­ly.
  • For inser­tion, turn the men­stru­al cup in one of the con­ve­nient ways and, fold­ed, insert it into the vagi­na, where it should ful­ly open to its orig­i­nal state.
  • The cup should be com­plete­ly, togeth­er with the tail, locat­ed inside the vagi­na. If the tail is in the way, it can be short­ened.
  • As it fills, or after a max­i­mum of 12 hours, remove the cup. This should be done like this: gen­tly squeeze the bot­tom and slow­ly pull the bowl out. If you can­not reach the men­stru­al cup, slow­ly and care­ful­ly pull it up by the tail, and only then grab the bot­tom.
  • Pour the secre­tion into the toi­let, and then wash the bowl first with cold, then with warm water with a means for inti­mate hygiene.
  • After these pro­ce­dures, the cup can be insert­ed again.
  • After use, ster­il­ize the bowl in boil­ing water and store in a cloth bag or a spe­cial con­tain­er.
defects of menstrual cups


Advantages of menstrual cups

Here’s why you should replace tam­pons and pads with a men­stru­al cup:

  • It is eco­nom­i­cal. Men­stru­al cups made of med­ical sil­i­cone with prop­er use and clean­ing can be used for up to 10 years! They are not cheap, but this is a one-time pur­chase that will pay for itself with long-term use.
  • It is eco­log­i­cal. A men­stru­al cup reduces waste in the form of used tam­pons and pads. Did you know that you use over 10,000 inti­mate hygiene prod­ucts in your life­time? They are sent to the land­fill because they are not recy­cled and pol­lute the envi­ron­ment. And there is no such prob­lem with the men­stru­al cup — you can always hand it in for recy­cling.
  • Con­ve­nient for trips. No need to car­ry around a pack of pads or tam­pons. A men­stru­al cup takes up much less space in a suit­case.
  • Com­fort­able. A men­stru­al cup is more con­ve­nient than pads, because it does not cre­ate a com­press effect, does not cause irri­ta­tion or dia­per rash. And it is also more con­ve­nient than a tam­pon, which can cause a feel­ing of dry­ness.
  • Safe­ly. Med­ical sil­i­cone, from which men­stru­al cups are made, is hypoal­ler­genic and does not affect the microflo­ra of the vagi­na. And sci­en­tists have not found a con­nec­tion between tox­ic shock and the use of men­stru­al cups, so they are much safer than tam­pons.
  • Con­ve­nient to use. The men­stru­al cup is wider than tam­pons, so you won’t need to run to the bath­room as often: it can be changed no more than once every 12 hours. Men­stru­al cups are also suit­able for those who do sports. Unlike gas­kets, they are com­plete­ly invis­i­ble.

Disadvantages of menstrual cups

Each device has its draw­backs, and here are some that you may encounter after start­ing to use a men­stru­al cup:

  • It is not always pos­si­ble to cor­rect­ly change the men­stru­al cup out­side the home. It must be washed after use, and not all toi­lets have a sink in the cab­in.
  • You also need to learn how to insert and remove the men­stru­al cup, which also takes a lit­tle time.

Just two dis­ad­van­tages against six advan­tages. The choice seems obvi­ous. But these are not all ways to replace tam­pons and pads. Let’s move on.

Reusable (fabric) pads

This is the per­fect tool for those who do not know how to insert a men­stru­al cup, but real­ly want to take care of the plan­et even dur­ing men­stru­a­tion. A reusable pad is not at all a dia­per or a rag, as in the USSR, but a mod­ern and high-tech prod­uct.

What are reusable pads made of?

Basi­cal­ly, reusable pads are made of cot­ton and fleece, some have a spe­cial mem­brane fab­ric inside. It does not allow mois­ture to pass through, but it “breathes” per­fect­ly, as a result of which the pad does not steam, absorbs well and is not vis­i­ble under clothes.

There are both dai­ly and coarse pads for heavy dis­charge.

reusable pads


How to use cloth pads

Every­thing is sim­ple: as usu­al. They are attached to the linen with the help of but­tons, and after use they are fold­ed into an enve­lope, placed in a spe­cial bag and tak­en away for wash­ing. They do not smell because the dis­charge dries.

After that, just wash the pads and dry them, and then you can use them again.

Advantages of reusable pads

  • Com­fort­able to wear and use. Cloth pads are much nicer to the body than dis­pos­able pads. They are made of nat­ur­al mate­ri­als, and inside there are sev­er­al lay­ers of fab­ric, so the pads real­ly breathe, do not let liq­uids pass and are usu­al­ly very soft.
  • There is no smell. Men­stru­al secre­tions dry up instead of accu­mu­lat­ing, so that we end up with an odor­less stain on the cloth.
  • There is no green­house effect. An ordi­nary gas­ket does not “breathe”, so a green­house effect occurs and a nutri­ent envi­ron­ment is cre­at­ed for the repro­duc­tion of bac­te­ria. Just imag­ine: this hor­ror comes into con­tact with the mucous mem­brane of the gen­i­tal organs and the bac­te­ria can even spread through­out the body. Ter­ri­ble! But the fab­ric pad breathes per­fect­ly, so there will be no such effect.
  • Eco­log­i­cal­ly. Reusable pads are not made from plas­tic or petro­le­um prod­ucts, and for steril­i­ty, they are also dis­in­fect­ed before sale. They are not only use­ful for the mucous mem­brane, but also last up to five years, and after use they can be safe­ly dis­posed of.
  • Eco­nom­i­cal­ly. Cloth pads are more expen­sive than ordi­nary pads, but they are well worth it, because you don’t need to buy a new pack every month! You will save sig­nif­i­cant­ly and can spend mon­ey on some­thing more use­ful or pleas­ant.

It turns out that there are a lot of con­ve­nient ways to do with­out pads and tam­pons dur­ing men­stru­a­tion. So don’t be afraid to exper­i­ment.