Yall, we’re good to talk about feminine hygiene. However, I must say this post will be slightly TMI so beware – if period talk creeps you out, leave now to spread some kindness.
In efforts to reduce my personal waste, I’ve decided to tackle the waste that I produce each month during shark week. I know recycling feminine waste can do some fantastic stuff like make electricity (!!!!!), however, unless you have access to the partnership program at work your used tampons/pads just end up in general waste.
I had the absolute pleasure to work with some great brands working towards providing re-usable solutions in the feminine hygiene department.
Modibodi period proof sensual bikini*: a reusable alternative to using pads
I love these. I don’t always want to wear tampons or (period cups), so these are an amazing alternative. If you prefer wearing pads rather than tampons, then RED by Modibody is the way to go.
These panties feature special 3 layer technology – the top layer quickly wicks away moisture, fights bacteria and stops odors, a middle layer quickly absorbs fluid and locks it away (up to 20 mils absorbency) and the third bottom layer gives you extra leak-proof protection, ensuring you are at your most secure and confident, with no leaking through to clothes.
I was sent two pairs a S (size 10) and a L (size 14). Being myself a size 12, I preferred the L, however, I’d say these fit really true to size. I can wear a 10 in some things, but these give me a bit of unflattering indents (not that it really mattered at night).
I love these for lazy days and especially wearing at night. I can’t comment on how these feel and perform during exercise mainly because I hate wearing underwear when exercising so I always choose tampons for that (or from now on my period cups).
If you’re only going to wear these at night only like I did, for the most part, one pair might be enough. I’d just rinse mine in the morning, and they would be dry by the evening. Or you can have two pairs and alternate them every day.
These are okay to go in the washing machine. The instruction recommends a cold wash on the delicate cycle, I must admit I washed these also on a regular cycle (about 40C), and they are fine, but I wouldn’t recommend doing so as according to the instructions this breaks down the natural fibers!
Kudos to Modibodi as these come in a cardboard packaging. However, they are also individually wrapped in plastic. Still long term, this is far less waste than using pads!
Period cup showdown: Bloody Heaven* vs. Kind Organic*
Before I get into specifics of both of these, I’d like to give a general review of switching from tampons to period cups.
It’s honestly not that bad. For me, the most intimidating part was the insertion, but I actually found it really easy. KIND provides useful “folding techniques” on their websites, so that was extremely useful at the beginning as well. I found the traditional ‘u fold’ worked just fine for me.
Surprisingly, I found the hardest the removal of period cups. Here’s a handy tip (I had to learn this the hard way): hold down on the ‘handle’ until you can reach the base of the cup, then pinch it and fold it inwards, this helps with releasing the suction and also makes it a lot less painful to take it out as the rip of the cup is quite wide. First few times I would just pull on the handle, and I found it veeeery uncomfortable to remove the cup until I googled some removal techniques.
Changing a period cup in public restrooms can be rather awkward. The process itself isn’t messy, I’d remove my cup over the toilet bowl in case there was any ‘spillage’. What’s awkward is having to leave the cubicle to wash your cup out and then go back into a cubicle to re-insert it. Thankfully, you can keep these in for like 8h at a time so chances are while you’re at work you might not need to change it until you get home anyways. Honestly, yes while this is awkward, it’s a small “sacrifice” to make to reduce feminine waste and help the planet! Also, what’s notable that whenever I go for a wee wearing a tampon, I always have it lower the ‘pressure’ so I would have to remove the tampon to have a proper wee and then re-insert a new one, with either of the cups I didn’t have that problem.
I worked out with both of these in and had no problems whatsoever. It wasn’t uncomfortable or anything.
Okay so here’s my take on both of these. I think both of these are extremely compatible and ultimately, you’ll have to take your own judgment as I really do recommend both of these – both have very subtle differences.
- thinner top rim (in comparison to KIND);
- longer handle at the bottom – this was handy when I had done a lot of exercise, and the cup had moved higher up.
- the diameter of the cup is bigger (this isn’t an issue per se for me personally);
- longer handle – while it was handy to have it, I could also feel it sticking out a bit and moving against my panties – they do recommend to trim the stem with scissors if you also experience this.
- made with medical grade silicone – this might be a factor if you’re allergic to silicone;
- donate a percentage of profits to women’s causes;
- comes in two sizes;
- up to 12h protection.
- comes with the PETA’s ‘caring consumer’ logo;
- a smaller diameter of the cup;
- the cup is 100% recyclable.
- thicker outer rim – I found inserting it correctly harder due to this, I could feel the cup more inside me than the Bloody Heaven one, however, I must admit it was very minor;
- shorter/non-adjustable stem/handle.
- made with medical grade TPE (Thermoplastic Elastomer) – “sometimes referred to as thermoplastic rubbers, are a class of copolymers or a physical mix of polymers (usually a plastic and a rubber) that consist of materials with both thermoplastic and elastomeric properties.” (wiki) – an alternative if you’re allergic to silicone;
- free from latex, BPA and phthalates;
- comes in two sizes;
- comes in an organic cotton pouch;
- KIND offers a range of other feminine hygiene products such as tampons, pads, and liners made with organic cotton;
- available to buy online as well as at Boots in store (subject to availability).