When that time of the month comes around, most menstruators go through the same scenario. They’ll buy a pack of their trusted pads and tampons, use it as usual, and throw it in the trash bin after a few hours.
It might have served its purpose, but these pads and tampons will remain on the planet for 500 to 800 years. How so? Because of one component that currently poses a huge threat to the environment— plastic.
How Period Products Contribute to Plastic Pollution
Commercial period products are mostly made with plastic, from packaging to absorbent core.
A menstrual pad (90% made of plastic) comes with plastic packaging, a plastic wrapper, a plastic sheet to protect the adhesive, and a plastic bottom sheet to prevent leaks. Meanwhile, a tampon has a plastic core to keep it firm, a plastic wrapper, a plastic base, and a plastic applicator. These are single-use only, which means they’ll all end up in landfills after the menstruator throws them in the bin.
Depending on its kind, plastic decomposes for 20 to 500 years. In some cases, it may even take up to 1000 years to fully break down, and some plastics won’t decompose at all.
You might be thinking… “Well, they’re pretty small, so it won’t pile up, unlike those plastic bags used in supermarkets, right?”
Well, they may be small, but they greatly impact the environment. In fact, a whole pack of commercial pads is equivalent to four plastic bags! Research also shows that over 45 billion period products are used every year. Imagine 45 billion period products, which will require millions of years to degrade, just sitting in landfills while a new batch of period waste piles on them. These landfills will overflow with single-use plastics from period products in no time.
Aside from landfills, these single-use plastics also end up in our oceans. According to Sea Circular, an initiative of the UN Environment Programme and the Coordinating Body on the Seas of East Asia (COBSEA), “The Philippines is one of the world’s worst offenders on marine plastic pollution, with 0.28 – 0.75 million tonnes per year of plastic entering to oceans from coastal areas in Manila Bay.” It includes packaging and plastic components of disposable pads and tampons.
Microplastics are also produced during the decomposing process of plastics. These microplastics hurt our marine life, as fish, turtles, seabirds, and whales see these wastes as prey. They’ll consume it, leading to many negative effects, such as lacerations, infections, starvation, and internal injuries.
This is why we need to step back and see the bigger picture. Is the convenience of using commercial pads and tampons worth it? Will we let this tragedy occur right in front of our very own eyes?
Yes, big corporations create the most environmental issues, but that doesn’t mean consumers can’t do anything to help save our planet. We can, if menstruators work together in using sustainable alternatives to commercial pads and tampons.
Good Thing We Have Alternatives…
Thanks to the continuous innovation of different femtech companies and organizations, there are tons of alternatives in the market, including the following:
A bell-shaped device inserted in the vagina to collect blood. It’s reusable and can last up to 10 years, depending on the quality and maintenance. If inserted properly, the user won’t be able to feel any discomfort and won’t be dealing with leaks. You can check this guide for more information.
They’re the same as a menstrual cup, but the difference is in their shape and where it’s inserted. The disc is placed back into your vaginal fornix, where the vaginal canal meets your cervix. Meanwhile, the menstrual cup is right below your cervix. You can check this guide for more information.
They look and feel like regular underwear, but the crotch area has extra layers of special fabrics to absorb your menstrual flow. Check out some of the bestselling period panties here.
Cloth Menstrual Pads
They’re pads made of cloth. There are snap buttons to put them in place, which can be used for years. Check out some of the bestselling reusable pads here.
…But There are Cons!
These products can help lessen single-plastic use but also have cons. For instance, menstrual cups and discs aren’t great for everyone, such as people dealing with vaginismus. They also have a learning curve, so beginners may need to use other menstrual products, such as pantyliners, to prevent leaks.
As for period panties and cloth pads, some may have difficulty figuring out when they’re full, leading to “leaky” accidents. Some menstruators also prefer a period product where they can easily dispose of it instead of washing them each cycle.
That said, there is another alternative that’s making waves in the market, which is perfect for those who’ve been using disposable pads and tampons from the very beginning of their menstrual journey— organic pads and tampons.
What About Organic Pads and Tampons?
Organic pads and tampons are made with natural and eco-friendly materials. They avoid the regular plastics used in commercial period products. They aren’t produced with harmful chemicals such as dyes, fragrances, chlorine, etc.
They work like regular pads and tampons but are less environmentally harmful. So for menstruators who want to help the planet but still want the convenience of pads and tampons, going for the organic kind is a great choice.
Meet Hormony, The Eco-Friendly Choice for Menstruators
Planning to make the switch? Be part of the eco-flow club by trying out Hormony! This newly-launched period product brand aims to lessen plastic waste and ensure menstruators use body-friendly menstrual products. Founded in the Philippines, they offer organic pads and tampons at accessible prices. Find out why you should try them below.
1It’s free from harmful chemicals.
Conventional pads and tampons may look harmless, but they’re packed with synthetic materials and toxic chemicals. Studies show a considerable amount of phthalates, parabens, bisphenols, problematic coatings, undisclosed fragrances, and other harmful substances in them. Most menstruators are casually wearing these pads and tampons, not realizing that they’re exposing questionable chemicals in their sensitive area.
And you see that cotton on pads and tampons? Turns out that most brands don’t even use cotton at all. Some are made with synthetic rayon, while others are made with conventional cotton that is produced using toxic pesticides, bleaching agents, and other chemicals to make them look as white as possible.
Also, most disposable pads use SAPs (superabsorbent polymers). They’re designed to hold a huge amount of menstrual flow, but they come with sodium polyacrylate, a nonbiodegradable ingredient often contaminated with acrylic acid. What’s with the said acid? It’s correlated with numerous adverse health conditions, such as skin allergies.
Your vulva and vagina are incredibly sensitive, so you shouldn’t settle with commercial pads and tampons with these harmful substances. As Hormony period products are organically made, they are free from all toxic chemicals. Feel free; feel safe!
2It comes with an organic cotton top sheet and core.
As mentioned above, conventional pads and tampons often use conventional cotton and synthetic materials as absorbents. Not only do they have harmful substances, but most of them are unbreathable, trapping heat and bacteria. This can lead to discomfort, foul odor, and irritation.
Hormony products are made with 100% organic top cotton sheets (for pads) and core (for tampons). They’re not made with synthetic materials and don’t come with bleaching agents. They’re also breathable, which means you’ll feel clean and fresh down there.
3It’s highly absorbent and has leak-locking flow channels.
For those worried that organic pads and tampons are “less effective” than conventional ones, remember that each product from this brand is intricately designed. Hormony pads and tampons have specially designed flow channels to lock in moisture and prevent leaks. You can also count on its highly absorbent core, keeping your feeling dry all day.
4It’s made with biodegradable and recyclable materials.
Hormony pads and tampons are made with organic cotton, an eco-friendly, sustainable, and biodegradable material. Their packaging is also recyclable, which means it has a less environmental impact.
5It’s a local brand.
This brand is founded in the Philippines, and all products are designed locally. With every purchase in this brand, you’re supporting local businesses while taking a big step toward sustainability.
With its organic materials, superabsorbent properties, and leak-locking design, it’s no surprise if most of you are eager to try this brand. Check out Hormony organic pantyliners, tampons, and pads below. For more deets, you can chat with our customer service at the side to get more information about their products.
1Hormony Organic Pantyliner
Good for the body. Good for the environment. The Hormony Organic Panty Liner is crafted with an organic cotton sheet, a breathable bottom layer, and a leak-locking flow channel.
Available in two variations:
- Hormony Organic Pantyliner 16s pack
- Hormony Organic Pantyliner 32s pack
- Soft and breathable organic cotton top sheet.
- Super absorbent holes; suitable for light flow.
- Secure flow channels to maintain freshness.
- Free from toxins, dyes, and synthetic chemicals
2Hormony Organic Pad with Wings
Bleed in harmony with Hormony Organic Pad with Wings! It helps you manage your periods in an environmentally conscious way, featuring an exceptional leak-locking flow channel, superabsorbent core, and a 7-layer design. It can hold 100mL (for regular flow pads) and 150mL (for heavy flow pads) of fluids, about five times more capacity than commercial pads.
Available in 4 variations:
- Hormony Regular Organic Pad with Wings 8s pack
- Hormony Regular Organic Pad with Wings 16s pack
- Hormony Heavy Organic Pad with Wings 8s pack
- Hormony Heavy Organic Pad with Wings 16s pack
- Soft and breathable organic cotton top sheet
- Super absorbent holes
- Specially designed flow channels to lock in moisture
- Free from toxins, dyes, and other harmful chemicals
3Hormony Organic Tampons
Change the cycle, and go green even on your red days! The Hormony Organic Tampon has a 100% organic cotton core, quickly absorbing your menstrual flow. Insert this in your vagina and proceed with your daily routine! Aside from its eco-friendly and body-friendly materials, what’s great about this one is that you can easily do swimming, dancing, biking, and other activities without the risk of leaks.
Available in 4 variations:
- Hormony Regular Organic Tampons 8s pack
- Hormony Regular Organic Tampons 16s pack
- Hormony Heavy Organic Tampons 8s pack
- Hormony Heavy Organic Tampons 16s pack
- Ultra-absorbent cotton core and leak-locking flow channels
- Free from fragrance, toxins, dyes, and other synthetic chemicals
- Made with biodegradable and recyclable materials
Small size. Big impact. Conventional period products such as pads and tampons are mostly made of single-use plastics and synthetic materials, harming the planet and your body.
There are different alternatives in the market, but the transition may be difficult for menstruators who’ve been using pads and tampons their whole life.
Organic pads and tampons, like those from Hormony, could help menstruators make the eco-friendly switch without compromising their comfort. Click here to learn more about this local period brand. Join us in changing the cycle!