The thing I get messaged about the most is period undies! So many people who menstruate are totally intrigued by these bad boys and want to know more about them. Period panties are a great zero-waste alternative to sanitary products like pads and tampons. I have used basically solely period undies when menstruating for around five years, so I feel I can tell you the ins and outs! Here are the questions I get asked most frequently.
1. Do they actually work??
Yes! Most brands have a special multi-layer system that soaks up menstrual blood in a hygienic way and traps it there so it can't come back out unless you wash it. It works similar to how a single-use pad would, but with less bulkiness and more areas for absorbency. I use them for heavy periods (I might go through a couple of pairs in a day) or to protect from spotting.
2. Don't they leak?
I think this is like any pad you might use. If you have a particularly heavy period, there is always a chance you might leak a little, but I have never had leakage so bad that it shows on the outside of my clothes, just a bit on the inside. Once the blood is in the undies it won't leak out.
3. What brands do you use?
My personal favourite is Thinx. They are a US brand that do great things for women all around the world and have a really solid, ethical and sustainable business model. I have also tried Modibodi, which is an Australian brand that a lot of my friends love, but I preferred Thinx (although I believe Thinx is a bit more expensive than Modibodi). There are sooo many other brands out there doing awesome things, so I suggest doing some research and finding a brand that you like the look of (ethical, sustainable, ideally close-by, helps out people in need, lady startup, etc) and buy one pair to try out. If you love them, you can always get more! And if not, they can become your just-in-case pair.
4. How many do I need?
I would suggest having at least 3 pairs. When I first started using them, I would just use one pair as a back up on Day 1 in case my tampon leaked. Then I got a few more and I slowly built up my collection until I didn't have to use any single-use items anymore. I have quite a few now, about 7 or 8, which is perfect for me. I have about four heavy-duty pairs and around four lighter pairs to suit any type of bleeding.
5. What about cleaning?
Cleaning is surprisingly easy! Your undies will last better if you clean them immediately after wearing them, but it is not essential. I tend to wash mine all at once at the end of my period and I have had no issues with that. It is important to rinse them off by hand first with cold water and some soap if you like until the water runs clean and there's no visible blood left. Then throw them in the wash on a cold, gentle cycle and hang dry. Easy as!
So what do you think? Have you tried period undies before, or if not, will you give them a go? Let me know in the comments!
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Have a wonderful time experimenting with these awesome eco-friendly alternatives!
Love and light,