I’ve been using cloth sanitary pads for around a year now. Lots of people have asked me how I’m getting on and how I take care of my reusable period products, so I thought it was about time I created a guide.
It’s a pretty common misconception that using reusables is complicated, messy or gross. It isn’t really any of those things, and I can safely say after a year of use it’s second nature to me.
Disclosure: affiliate links
Why use cloth sanitary pads?
- Less waste – the average woman uses over 10,000 tampons or sanitary towels in her lifetime. All of these end up in landfill or in the waterways. Even biodegradable disposable sanitary products won’t biodegrade in landfill due to oxygen starvation.
- More moolah – by switching to a menstrual cup, you stop yourself needing to buy the disposable products every month.
- No stuffing nasty bleach products in or around your vagina every month (yes, the reasons tampons are white is because they’ve been bleached)
What other green period products are there?
Menstrual cups – I reviewed the Kind Organic menstrual cup a while back and have since decided that using both a cup and CSPs are the way forward for me.
Organic disposables – I’ve seen a number of organic disposables pop up in supermarkets and pharmacies in recent months. I personally wouldn’t choose this route (you’re still most likely sending this to landfill) but if you do, then it’s at least less bad than regular disposables.
The easy method
Simply rinse under cold water until the water runs clear and then pop in the machine with your regular laundry. This is the method I usually use, and is most useful if you’re not squeamish and don’t use lots of other cloth based alternatives.
The squeamish method
Use your washing machine’s rinse cycle to rinse out the menstrual fluid, then wash as above. This uses more water and electricity than the other methods, so please try and get comfy with how your body works before resorting to this!
The nappy cycle
As the name suggests, clean and take care of them with your cloth nappies or family cloth. If you already use lots of cloth based alternatives, you probably already have a preferred system in place for dealing with them. Just keep on doing that!
Video – how to take care of CSPs (from glamazini)
The dos and don’ts of using cloth sanitary pads
Experiment before you dive in – buy just one or two and see how you get on.
Support small or medium local businesses by buying their products.
Treat your CSPs as you should any other purchase: with care, love, and appreciation for the effort that went into making it.
Buy a massive batch to start with and then wish you hadn’t.
Buy from some faceless entity half the world away.
Treat your CSPs as a fad or something you can just drop. That’s not kind to our planet, even if they are reusable!
My favourite cloth sanitary pads
Bloom & Nora’s Bloomers and probably the softest CSP in existence. There’s a reason I said this in my review last year:
-Me, last year, in that there Bloom & Nora review
I make no exaggeration when I say it was like gently resting my vulva upon a fluffy, hot pink cloud.
Crimson Moon CSPs are much more fun and expressive to look at, but if I’m honest nowhere near as soft. They’re as comfy as wearing your regular underwear, softness wise. However, I can take the loss in cloud-like comfort when I get to buy such beautiful CSPs. They make my period a lot more fun!
I *think* that’s pretty much everything you’ll need to know about taking care of CSPs. Have I missed something? Let me know in the comments 🙂