As easy as it is to list down products that do not contribute to the major downfall of the environment and expect or hope that women will just magically go with it, it may be a little more difficult than that. Any change, good or bad, involves a little bit of discomfort. Likewise, to make a conscious effort to move towards a green lifestyle undoubtedly involves discomfort – especially when you just want to be comfortable and inconvenienced as little as possible during your period.
You work and you are busy. You make little changes in your lifestyle to do your bit for the environment but during that time of the month, it is a battle between green guilt and “can’t bother” comfort – is there a middle ground here or do we need to be a part of one of the two battalions? Let’s find out.
- Menstrual Cups
These are reusable devices that are insertional. They are put into the lower part of your vagina and can be left in for 12 hours. The device functions exactly like a cup, collecting your discharge as you bleed. Despite being convenient, eco-friendly, reusable, and easy on the pocket, you may have some general apprehensions about inserting something up your privates. But, if you are comfortable with this method, go you! It’s like a plunge into the deep end: once you dive in, it may not be as scary anymore. The great thing about menstrual cups is that they can last your entire workday; you only need to clean it out once you get back to the comforts of your own bathroom.
- Period Panties
There are a variety of period panties out there. Make sure to do your research and double-check the quality and strength of the ones you order. You may not be able to go sans period product for all the days of your period, but on the days when you experience a lighter flow, you can definitely give it a go (because things might get a little uncomfortable if your flow is unexpectedly heavy). During a working day, you’re probably plagued by the anxiety of bleeding through your slacks and leaving a stain. That’s why period panties are great as both stand-alone products during your lighter days and as complements to other period products during your heavier ones. Say goodbye to period stain anxiety.
- Cotton Pads
Now, this is a tricky one. Cotton pads are brilliant because they are less likely to cause rashes like their plastic counterparts and are environmentally sustainable alternatives to regular sanitary napkins. However, the issue is the washing. It may not be appropriate to have your (albeit clean) cotton pads hanging in the office bathroom and you may not be excited about the idea of carrying around a bloody laundry bag to take home at the end of the day. Unless you have the luxury of your own private bathroom, this method may not work too well.
The world is growing, and we now have more options when it comes to sustainable period products. It may seem daunting to make the switch, especially if you are a working menstruator, but the point is to wiggle a little bit out of your comfort zone for the greater good. You can read more about how to have an environmentally sustainable period here. Have a green period!