At some point on your zero waste journey, you’ll probably do your research on how you can reduce your period waste. With 12 billion pantyliners and pads heading to the landfill each year, there has to be an eco-friendly alternative that makes it easy to have low waste periods without being too inconvenient. And lucky enough, we now have a way to have zero to low waste periods with reusable pantyliners!
If you’ve been using disposable pads your entire life, it might be difficult to jump on board with reusable pads without at least some convincing. With that being said, here’s everything you need to know about reusable pantyliners from a hygienic standpoint to their environmental impact!
Are Reusable Pantyliners Hygienic?
Before switching to eco-friendly period products, the most common concern is how hygienic it is to be using reusable products in sensitive areas. If you ask us, it’s a valid concern since it’s important to consider the pros and cons of anything before giving it a try! Reusable panty liners can be just as sanitary as disposable ones as long as you clean them properly, just as you would with your regular clothes.
Luckily, they’re super easy to clean! After one use, you can rinse your pad with cold water and then toss it in the laundry machine on a warm or hot setting. Yes, it’s really that easy! Cloth period products might sound off-putting at first, but once you adjust to your new period routine, you’ll find that reusables aren’t as complicated or unsanitary as they sound!
How Do Reusable Pantyliners Work?
Believe it or not, reusables aren’t much different from disposable pads. They have a similar shape, construction, and feel to them, making the transition that much easier. Just as you would with any single-use pad, secure the pad to your underwear using the snap closure, which is the most common type of closure on most reusable pads.
Since reusables are typically made from strong cotton material, you can go about your day without worry about leaks or feeling the need to change your pad too often. However, everybody is different, so be sure to pay attention to your comfort levels and change your pad accordingly!
The Environmental Impact of Reusable Pantyliners
Whether your goal is to reduce your carbon footprint or your monthly spending on period products, reusable pantyliners have a significant impact on the planet, in the best way possible! Environmentalists found that each person who menstruates uses around 240 to 504 disposable period products per year, accumulating at least five pounds of waste just from their period. And since women menstruate for roughly 34 years, the total waste for one individual comes to 187 lbs!
While reusable pantyliners eliminate your period waste entirely, they also take far less energy and resources to produce in the first place. From production to packaging to their entire lifespan, reusables are much friendlier to the planet. The most environmental damage that can come from reusable pads is through the washing cycle, but assuming they’d get thrown into the wash with your other clothing, they wouldn’t add much to your overall footprint!