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

menstrual cup


Menstrual cup

Despite the fact that men­stru­al cups have been around for a long time, many do not even know about their exis­tence. The good news is that recent­ly they have become more and more pop­u­lar, and inter­est in them goes far beyond the zero-waste com­mu­ni­ties. Let’s fig­ure out togeth­er what it is and what its advan­tages are.

What is a menstrual cup made of?

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

There are small and large sizes, as well as dif­fer­ent shapes of the “tail”. And basi­cal­ly they are all the same.

How to use a menstrual cup

Every­thing is both sim­ple and not very:

  1. Before first use, boil the men­stru­al cup in clean water for five min­utes.
  2. Wash your hands thor­ough­ly before the pro­ce­dure.
  3. For inser­tion, roll up the men­stru­al cup in one of the con­ve­nient ways and, rolled up, insert it into the vagi­na, where it should ful­ly open to its orig­i­nal state.
  4. The cup should be com­plete­ly, along with the tail, locat­ed inside the vagi­na. If the tail gets in the way, it can be short­ened.
  5. When full or after a max­i­mum of 12 hours, remove the bowl. This should be done like this: gen­tly squeeze the bot­tom and slow­ly pull the bowl out. If you can’t get the men­stru­al cup out, slow­ly and gen­tly pull it up by the tail, and only then grab the bot­tom.
  6. Pour the secre­tions into the toi­let, and then rinse the bowl first with cold, and then with warm water with an inti­mate hygiene prod­uct.
  7. After these pro­ce­dures, the cup can be re-intro­duced.
  8. After the end of use, ster­il­ize the bowl in boil­ing water and store in a cloth bag or a spe­cial con­tain­er.
disadvantages of menstrual cups


Benefits of menstrual cups

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

  • It’s eco­nom­i­cal. Med­ical grade sil­i­cone men­stru­al cups can last up to 10 years if prop­er­ly used and cleaned! They are not cheap, but this is a one-time pur­chase that will pay for itself with pro­longed use.
  • It’s eco-friend­ly. A men­stru­al cup reduces waste from used tam­pons and pads. Did you know that you use more than 10 thou­sand inti­mate hygiene prod­ucts in your life? They are sent to the trash, because they are not recy­cled, and they pol­lute nature. And with a men­stru­al cup, there is no such prob­lem — you can always hand it over for recy­cling.
  • Con­ve­nient for trav­el. No need to car­ry a pack of pads or tam­pons with you. A men­stru­al cup takes up much less space in a suit­case.
  • Com­fort­able. A men­stru­al cup is more com­fort­able than pads because it does not cre­ate a com­press effect, does not cause irri­ta­tion or dia­per rash. It’s also more com­fort­able than a tam­pon, which can make you feel dry.
  • 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 link between tox­ic shock and the use of men­stru­al cups, so they are much safer than tam­pons.
  • Con­ve­nient to use. The men­stru­al cup is more capa­cious than tam­pons, so you won’t need to run to the bath­room as often: it can be changed at most once every 12 hours. Also, men­stru­al cups are suit­able for those who play sports. They, unlike gas­kets, are com­plete­ly invis­i­ble.

Disadvantages of menstrual cups

There are always down­sides to every rem­e­dy, and here are some of the things you may encounter once you start using a men­stru­al cup:

  • It is not always pos­si­ble to prop­er­ly change a men­stru­al cup out­side the home. After use, it needs to be washed, and not all toi­lets have a sink in the stall.
  • You also need to learn how to insert and remove the men­stru­al cup, which also requires a small amount of time.

Total two dis­ad­van­tages against six advan­tages. It seems the choice is obvi­ous. But that’s not all the ways to replace tam­pons and pads. Let’s move on.

Reusable (fabric) pads

This is the per­fect rem­e­dy for those who are unable to insert a men­stru­al cup, but who real­ly want to take care of the plan­et even dur­ing their peri­od. 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?

Most­ly 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, due to which the pad does not float, absorbs well and is not vis­i­ble under cloth­ing.

There are both panty lin­ers and coarse panty lin­ers for heavy flow.

reusable pads


How to use fabric 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 removed before wash­ing. They don’t smell because the dis­charge dries up.

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

Benefits of reusable pads

  • Com­fort­able to wear and use. Cloth pads are much more pleas­ant to the body than dis­pos­able pads. They are made from nat­ur­al mate­ri­als, and inside there are sev­er­al lay­ers of fab­ric, so the pads breathe, do not let liq­uid through and are usu­al­ly very soft.
  • No smell. The men­stru­al flow dries up rather than accu­mu­lates, so you end up with an odor­less stain on the fab­ric.
  • There is no green­house effect. Ordi­nary padding does not “breathe”, so a green­house effect occurs and a breed­ing ground for bac­te­ria is cre­at­ed. Just imag­ine: this hor­ror comes into con­tact with the mucous mem­brane of the gen­i­tal organs and the bac­te­ria can even spread through­out the body. Hor­ror! But the fab­ric lin­ing breathes well, so this effect will not be.
  • Eco-friend­ly. Reusable pads are not made from plas­tic and petro­le­um prod­ucts, and for steril­i­ty they are also dis­in­fect­ed before being sold. Not only are they good for the mucosa, but they will also last up to five years, and after use they can be safe­ly dis­posed of.
  • eco­nom­i­cal­ly. Cloth pads are more expen­sive than reg­u­lar pads, but they pay off very well, because you don’t have to buy a new pack every month! You will save a lot and can spend mon­ey on some­thing more use­ful.

It turns out that there are many much more con­ve­nient ways to man­age dur­ing men­stru­a­tion. So don’t be afraid to exper­i­ment.