Ok, now that I have lured all the men in with that title, I will warn all of you that there is nothing titillating about what follows. It’s about something you’d rather not hear. So don’t say I didn’t warn you!
Each month (a hint for you guys to stop reading NOW!), when the dreadful crimson tide comes rolling through, I find that I dread the idea of using feminine hygiene products. They are the bane of my existence. I hate them. I hate changing them. I hate buying them. I hate what’s in them. (Unless of course they are organic cotton, in which case I hate how expensive they are.)
Tampons are made from cotton. Cotton farmers use one quarter of the world’s supply of pesticides, and five out of nine of the most commonly used pesticides are recognized to be carcinogenic. You wouldn’t squirt bug spray up there, would you? So why use a toxic tampon?
If you are still using conventional tampons I encourage you to stop. The pesticides, toxic dyes, chlorine, dioxin, rayon, and perfumes in them are so readily absorbed by your insides it’s not even funny. Vaginal mucous is exceptionally absorbent.
The first step up from conventional pads/tampons is organic cotton pads/tampons. But I dare you to take it a step further and venture into the world of cloth pads. Yes, you heard me. Re-usable cloth pads. They are pretty and comfortable. And you only have to buy them once. What’s not to love? Also, if you are having bad cramps during your period it is better to use pads. Tampons can increase crampage by limiting flow.
The company Glad Rags (founded in Portland!) began their cloth pad business in 1993 in order to decrease the amount of energy used, pesticides sprayed, and waste made by disposable pads/tampons. Not only are cloth pads healthier for your body, but they are also more sustainable (the average woman will use 15,000 tampons in her lifetime).
I recently started using cloth pads and they work better than any disposable pad I have ever used–even the big diaper-like nighttime ones.
There are still times and places for tampons of course, so keep a handy dandy supply of organic tampons around so you don’t have to use a nasty poisonous one during an emergency. You can find organic tampons at your local co-op or health food store and at Whole Foods. You can also buy them online. I like Emerita brand. 🙂