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Cloth pads are comfy, convenient and cost-saving

Periods. It’s not a subject I usually talk much about. It’s not that I’m a prude, it’s just, well, it’s personal!

So you can imagine my surprise when I found myself bringing up reusable pad chat at every opportunity with friends!! This is only a recent thing, as I’ve learned about the mountains of period products ending up in landfill and lining our beaches.

A real eye-opener

Not only that, I was genuinely shocked to realise how much plastic is in pads, like four plastic bags worth in one pack, and when you tot up the amount I’ve used since I was 14, it’s a real eye-opener. So, in line with trying to switch to more sustainable options generally in my life, I thought I’d give reusables a shot.

I wasn’t completely naive, I’d heard of mooncups but dismissed them as I’m not a tampon user. Little did I realise, at the time, that you can get reusable pads and period pants (and even reusable crocheted tampons – seriously - but I’ll not go there!).

Stocking up 

With the task in mind, I took to the internet to stock up. For a pack of five pads with zippy carry bag, it cost £45, which seemed fairly pricey. Then I figured out that over five years (the estimated lifespan of pads) it’d cost £0.75 a month, so financially it made sense for me too.

The best bits...

I’ll be honest, front of mind was comfort and protection (no one wants to leak, no matter how environmentally-friendly the alternative is – or maybe that’s just me). So now after three months of using reusable pads, I feel suitably experienced and the results are in:

  • They are super comfy – of course, you’d expect soft cotton to be more snug than the plastic and chemical combo offered in disposables.
  • The absorbency is great – and I don’t even notice much of the blood as the pad is dark grey.
  • They stay put (in the main) – each pad has poppers (instead of sticky wings) but can move around more when sleeping. I did leak one night, but that’ll be easily sorted when I buy the longer night pads.
  • Washing isn’t the big chore I imagined – I give them a rinse after each use, but not always, and chuck them in a normal wash with other clothes. I can’t see how this would work if I’m away on holiday, so I reckon I’d use disposables then, although I’m planning to try the cup, at some point.
  • I need more supplies – keeping on top of the household washing can be a battle, so on the odd occasion I’ve run out, and used a disposable pad. Now I’m comfortable using reusables I plan to top up with another pack.

All in all, I’m sticking with reusable pads (and I’ve just added to my collection with some period pants, so look forward to giving them a whirl!). As for my friends, many have decided to do trials of their own. So, while they figure out if the switch works for them, it makes for an interesting chat on a night out!

Find out how the rest of the team got on...

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