There are millions of ladies in the world (particularly those who are having their regular monthly menstrual cycle) and just imagine thousand of sanitary napkins they have been using and have been filling the world’s dump site everyday. (That means billions of tampons/sanitary pads each day)
There are different kinds of sanitary napkins or popularly known as pads. It is usually rectangular in shape and varies in range of thicknesses, shapes and absorption capacities. Some brands also offer protective adhesive wings that stick to the underside of your underwear. Modern manufacturing practices package most sanitary napkins folded inside individual wrapping ?
Just like diapers, sanitary napkins are considered as residual waste which means that more time is needed to decompose and study shows that it decompose around 500 to 800 years. Just imagine that, we will all be gone by that time but our pads would still remain. Strange, isn’t it but what else we could do, our menstrual cycle is a part of being a woman and without it, there is a less chances of having an offspring (baby).
With the wide problem of cluttering our environment, many are developing ways on how to help greening women’s menstrual cycle.
Alternatively, some women are already using a a washable or reusable cloth menstrual pad.
These are made from a number of types of fabric — most often cotton flannel, or hemp (which is highly absorbent and not as bulky as cotton).
Others improvised by having wings just like the sanitary pads which can be secured around your undies but some are just plain rectangles that can be placed between the body and your underpants. These pads are washable which do need to be disposed thus making more economical because you don’t need to consume amount of money to buy sanitary pads each month.
There is also a reusable menstrual pads that was popularly called as “mama cloth” which you can buy from numerous websites or you can also make one at home (using instructions that are available online). These pads are now very popular because it’s perfume free and allergen free. Some other says it is comfortable too and creating an eco-friendly period.
Just as i remember, my grand mother used to create “pasador” (which was made from old cotton dresses and sewn together to make as a pad) for me when I was a much younger lady before but the problem i see then is I really hate washing it, so i preferred using the disposable pads but with the growing green awareness in my head, i would like to try this new eco-friendly idea that i know would definitely benefit our environment.
Here are some companies that offers eco-friendly washable sanitary pads for your reference;
From Earthwise Girls , Made in UK – £5.25
Organic cotton washable sanitary pads by Green Shopping Store – $39.99(set of 3)
Now, if your having problem where to buy this washable sanitary pads or you think it can still cost you that much, you can create your own pad using this easy instruction by Born to Love
Here’s one for Mom today! Cut out three layers of 100% cotton fabric (i.e. flannelette or terry cloth) into an 8.5″x10″ (21.5cm x 25cm) rectangle. Round corners. Pile together.
Stitch all around, using either a zigzag stitch or a serge stitch. Cut out two wings 6″x6″ (15cm x 15cm), shaped like this =O=.
Fold each wing in half, and zigzag or serge stitch all raw edges. Centre wings on the pad, about 2.25″ (5.5cm) from either long edge, with straight edge of wings facing straight edge of the pad. Looks something like this [_[)(]_], though the wings will be overlapping.
Sew a straight seam, catching in the wings, 2.5″ (6.5cm) from both long edges. Either sew Velcro® on wings or use hammer-on snaps. Fold the pad in thirds, and fasten the wings underneath the fold.
Now you have a super-absorbent 9-layer menstrual pad that opens up for easy washing and quick drying!
Here are some organic pads that i also found on the net that are really interesting;
Water hyacinth can be considered as invasive plant wrecking and been a problem clogging rivers but this water plant have many usages and was created for many fashionable purposes including bags and shoes but did you know that the fibers of the water hyacinth can be also be made into a sanitary napkin?
Jani’s pad is folded with the waxed barrier facing outward, then held in place with a thin paper strip that protects the adhesive. A 9×9-inch piece of water-hyacinth paper, fastened with a sticker, secures multiple pads. “This ﬂexible solution allows the customer to either buy a pack of 10 pads in one go, or just one or two at a time,” note its creators. “The vendor can then easily tighten the wrapping around the remaining pads and reattach the sticker.”
SHE, banana leaves sanitary pads
Created by Elizabeth Scharpf, Banana fiber sanitary pads offers inexpensive solution for Rwandan women. Out of her passion to help others, SHE ( sustainable health enterprises ) was born to answer the growing problem of rwandan girls not going to school because of ineffective pads and embarrassment.
If this pads, can reach the majority of third world country, this would be a great help not just for little girls but also to create a more sustainable environment. green your menstrual period today. let me know your thoughts.