Period Power: The Pad, The Tampon and The Cup
Today, I’m creating the post that I have always wanted from someone: a completely honest and truthful account of three of the most popular methods of controlling your menstrual flow. As someone who has finally used the pad, the tampon and the cup, I’m here to give you all of the details on each, including pros and cons, method, and who they’ll be best for. In true Edith & June fashion, we’ll also be discussing the organic option vs. the non-organic version and which is better.
Using pads is something that I’ve never liked. Personally, I find traditional pads to be scratchy and uncomfortable on the skin, and they never move with your body, instead they crunch and bend into awkward shapes and the blood tends to sit on top at first and slowly sink in. Not to mention, pads are extremely wasteful and not bio-degradable: they sit in landfills and never break down. But unless you use a cup, there is no other way to sleep while on your period. That’s where Hannahpads come in. Hannahpads are reusable pads that are super soft and come in three different sizes. Hannahpads move and conform to your body so sleeping and moving is more comfortable, and they absorb faster than regular pads. I was skeptical about the cleaning process, but it’s not as bad as you think. Simply rub a natural detergent into the stained areas of the pad and then put the pad into a bin of water for 6-24 hours. After, simply rinse and hang to dry.
I love Hannahpads because they’re made from organic cotton so there is absolutely no pesticides or chemicals in the pads. They also come at a great price point that will save you SO much money in the long run, as well as supporting a small, environmentally friendly brand. Also, Hannahpads are so cute!
One of the most popular period products is the tampon. It’s simple, and it’s easy for on-the-go but besides being not great for the environment, traditional tampons aren’t good for your body. Tampons are typically bleached with chlorine to create that bright white color and keep the tampon sterile. Tampons are also made from cotton, and unless you’re getting organic tampons, the cotton that these tampons are made from has pesticides and chemicals on it from growing of the actual plant. Tampons also typically contain fragrance to help with the smell that can come from your period, however this fragrance often throws off the ph balance of your vagina and can cause problems following your period. The truth is, though, that a tampon is one of the quickest and most convenient ways to manage your period-which is why so many girls use it. But there’s still a way to use tampons without messing with your ph and putting harmful chemicals and fragrances into your body. The answer: Organic Tampons. We love the CORA tampons here at E&J, and they can easily be found at your local Target. They’re the same price as any other non-organic brand and they work just as well, without the nasty after-effects of a regular tampon.
Ah, the mythical period cup. When you mention the cup to people who haven’t heard of it before, they’re appalled when you explain what it is. “You just,like, dump it out? How gross!” But if you’re not squeamish about your own period blood, the cup is an environmentally friendly and healthy way to manage your period. A couple of months ago, the girls on team who had never used a period cup before tried the Lena cup and after one cycle, vowed to never go back to the usual ways of period management. With a period cup, you simply insert it into your vaginal canal enough so that it sits snuggly inside the vaginal walls, catching any blood that comes down from the uterus. After a few hours (4-12) remove the cup by slowly wiggling it down with the stem and pinching the base to release suction and then dump the blood into the toilet, rinse and re-insert. The best part about the cup is being able to wear it while you sleep without any discomfort or leakage, and you don’t have to worry about it leaking onto the bed. While it can be tricky to get it in and out at first, by your second period, you’ll be a pro. We recommend buying cup cleaning wipes at Target for work or school where you have to empty it on the go.