There’s been a lot of controversy lately about the ingredients in certain well-known period products. But you’d probably be surprised to find out that most of the brands on the grocery store shelf actually contain some pretty nasty ingredients.
Finding non-toxic period products can be tricky. Unfortunately, some brands use deceptive marketing and labeling. That’s why I’ve created this complete guide to finding the best non-toxic period products.
Are My Period Products Toxic?
Most conventional pads and tampons contain endocrine disruptors, carcinogens, and even skin irritants. And the worst part is you’re putting these chemicals in or around your vagina, one of the most sensitive parts of your body.
Common toxic ingredients found in period products:
- Volatile organic compounds
Using products that contain these substances is like giving them the fast track to your reproductive system. And if you’re struggling with hormonal conditions, infertility, or heavy periods, the last thing you want is more toxins in your system.
Organic vs. Synthetic
You’ve probably seen the word “organic” on some packaging. But what exactly does that mean when it comes to pads, tampons, and period underwear?
Just like with food, organic indicates that the cotton has been grown without the use of pesticides. Having said that, it’s important to note that many products have an organic top sheet. However, the inside or other parts of the pad may not be organic.
Usually, fully organic pads are more expensive than pads with an organic cotton top sheet. Personally, I look for fully organic pads. However, I realize that this might now be in everyone’s budget.
Look for certifications from GOTs and ICEA.
Non-toxic Period Products I Recommend
Bamboo is another eco-friendlier alternative to cotton pads and I love the brand Flo (see above).
These are great if you’re dedicated to creating as little waste as possible. Sometimes they can be tough to clean properly, but most are machine washable. Check out these reusable pad options:
Personally, I rarely ever wear tampons. Whether they’re organic or not, I encourage you to avoid them as well, especially if you have heavy periods. It’s best to allow yourself to release your period freely via pads or period underwear.
Sometimes it is more realistic to wear tampons for swimming or when wearing more revealing clothing. When looking for tampons, be sure to look for organic cotton without a plastic applicator.
Period underwear is a good alternative for some. Keep in mind that some brands use nanosilver to make their panties antibacterial. Technically, there isn’t much credible information to determine whether this substance is safe or unsafe. It’s probably best to avoid underwear labeled antimicrobial or antibacterial.
Some women swear by menstrual cups. But there are some things to keep in mind if you decide to try a menstrual cup.
Yes, they are very eco-friendly. However, some women with very heavy bleeding find them to be extremely messy during removal.
Another potential issue is ensuring they’re sterilized and cleaned before each use. Personally, they aren’t my favorite option because they can essentially form a seal in the vagina. And I’m really a proponent of letting the blood flow out of the body freely.
If you do decide to go this route, look for medical-grade silicone that hasn’t been dyed. Sorry, the bright, fun colors are probably off the table.
Why I Use Nontoxic Period Products
After being diagnosed with uterine fibroids, it’s more important than ever to me to use non-toxic period products. The last thing I want to do is add to my toxic load and introduce chemicals that can contribute to hormonal imbalance.
Using organic period products is more expensive. However, I get peace of mind knowing that the items I’m putting in or near my vagina are non-toxic.