Did you read about the recent Kimberley Clark recall on one of their Kotex tampon ranges?
Straight from the horses mouth, these tampons were manufactured with a raw material contaminated with a bacterium which could cause health risks including vaginal infections, urinary tract infections, pelvic inflammatory disease or even life-threatening conditions.
Ewwww. No thanks.
But that’s not all. Did you know that two to three people die every year in the U.K. as a result of toxic shock syndrome?
Some of these people get TSS as a result of using tampons. The toxic shock causing bacteria thrives on synthetic fibres found in all major tampon brands such as rayon or viscose.
On top of all THAT is the fact that each woman uses around 12000 pads or tampons in her lifetime. And as you all know, there is no such place as ‘away’ so when you flush them ‘away’ or ‘throw them away’ 125-150 kg of sanitary products in your lifetime ends up in landfill, being incinerated or washed up on beaches.
Not exactly a great legacy is it ladies?
Fortunately there are several ways to ride horses and go swimming just like the gals in the tampon ads WITHOUT contributing to landfill or beach waste:
The Mooncup is made from medical grade silicone and is a small ‘cup’ which you insert to catch your blood flow. You empty it out, give it a clean and Bob’s your Uncle (or Flo’s your Aunt). They last several years and cost around £16.
Washable pads are made from any funky material you like and replace disposable sanitary towels. Fancy some leopard skin fleece, hemp fairies or cotton unicorns? The world is your oyster and your periods will never be dull again. Pads cost anything from £4 for a panty liner to £15 for a post partum pad and last several years. But you know what? Why not go through your fabric stash and make your own?
Natural sea sponges are used just like tampons, except you clean and reuse them. These cost around £10 for two and last a year.
None of these options are cheap initially, but long term you’ll be quids in and the environment will love you for it.
What about you – how you embraced a zero waste period or does the idea gross you out?