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With eco-friendly feminine care and menstrual products more accessible than ever before, women no longer need to settle for bulky pads or disposable tampons and can opt for washable cloth pads, menstrual cups and absorbent period-proof panties.
Making the simple switch is also better for the environment. Swapping tampons for a menstrual cup can help save up to 200 single-use period products per year – that’s 11,000 in your lifetime!
So if you’re looking to make the switch to reusable menstrual products, we’ve compiled this list of eco-friendly brands helping women make the switch to sustainable period products and mitigate their environmental impact during that time of month.
For an ecological and economical solution to periods, the Lunette menstrual cup is a great choice– it is the zero waste alternative to disposable tampons. And with a lifespan of up to 10 years, the Lunette menstrual cup can save you hundreds of dollars over the decade.
Made from medical grade silicone that is FDA-approved and Therapeutic Goods Administration (Australia) approved, the Lunette menstrual cup is hypoallergenic, toxin-free and safe. Produced in Finland in a factory powered by renewable energy, and packaged in recycled materials, Lunette is serious about sustainability. In fact, the Australian and New Zealand Lunette team established educational resource Sustainable Period Project with the goal of educating mainstream consumers about sustainable sanitary alternatives.
Prices start from US$26.90. Purchase here.
If you need extra protection when wearing a menstrual cup, period undies are the way to go… and Thinx is the pioneering brand behind the concept. Launched in 2014 after a successful crowdfunding campaign, Thinx broke ground, developing and selling reusable period-proof underwear at a time when the product was unheard of. Fast forward to today, and it is still the world’s leading brand for period-absorbing underwear.
Thinx super-absorbent, odor-fighting, moisture-wicking, and leak-resistant undies are available in a range of styles, fabrics (certified organic cotton right through to polyester) cuts, sizes and colours to choose from. Select from classic, thing, boyleg and high-waisted styles in XXS right through to 3XL.
While the company has tested for harmful substances and the product is certified with STANDARD 100 by OEKO-TEX, early this year a scientist found significant levels of PFAS, a group of potentially harmful chemicals, in Thinx menstrual underwear, though the company dismisses the scientist’s findings. “Based on these third-party tests, PFAS chemicals were not detected in Thinx products,” CEO Maria Molland told Fast Company. “Our customers’ health and safety is our number one priority, and we will always work to deliver the safest products available.”
Prices start from $29.98 (sale). Shop here.
Ruby Cup has been helping women make the switch to zero waste periods since 2011. Producing safe and long-lasting menstrual cups made from medical grade silicone, the brand offers a choice of five different colours and two different sizes. This award-winning social business also embraces the ‘Buy One, Give One’ model pioneered by TOMS ethical shoes. For every Ruby Cup purchased, one is donated to a girl in need.
Priced from A$54.50. Purchase from Biome store here.
Modibodi is Australia’s leading period underwear brand producing comfortable, breathable and anti-microbial period-proof and leak-proof underwear in a range of innovative and high quality fabrics such as bamboo, Merino Perform Wool and microfibre. Choose from a variety of classic and maternity styles, cuts, colours, sizes 4/3XS to 26/6XL and absorbency (super light through to heavy-overnight).
The Aussie company has also attracted a plethora of new converts during the pandemic lockdown. “We’ve seen large numbers of customers who have embraced sustainable options in recent months, with a lack of access to disposables being the motivation they needed to try out leak proof apparel for themselves,” said Kristy Chong, CEO and Founder of Modibodi. “While necessity drove the reason to switch, they stay because they are more comfortable, cost effective and better for the environment too.”
Prices start from A$25.50. Shop here.
If menstrual cups aren’t your jam and you prefer traditional menstrual pads, you can’t go past the reusable and washable pads produced by Australian company Hannahpad. Available in a range of bold prints and fun patterns, these pads are made from certified organic cotton that contains no nasties such as dioxin, fragrances and formaldehyde. These reusable pads are eco-friendly, cost-effective and the zero waste alternative to disposable menstrual pads. The business also offers reusable liners for lighter period days.
Price range: $16.95 for a small pad, $35 for an ultra pad. New email subscribers receive 10% discount. Shop here.
It took three years of market research, surveying women, testing designs and winning a government innovation grant for Australian social enterprise Myoni to launch in 2017, but thankfully it did because the business produces what is arguably the world’s most stylish menstrual cup. Made from medical grade non-toxic material the Myoni cup is reusable, recyclable, and ethically manufactured in Australia. The enterpise is also committed to fighting period poverty – donating 50% of profits to support initiatives such as Share the Dignity which helps to supply menstrual cups to those experiencing domestic and family violence and/or homelessness in Australia.
Price $90. Buy it here.
Australian company JuJu manufacture a range of eco-friendly, reusable period care products, including cloth pads, menstrual cups and period-proof undies. Proudly Australian-made, the products come in a range of sizes, styles, basic colours and fun prints. You can also save money when buying a combo pack of period underwear and menstrual cup or ‘period starter kits’.
When it launched in 2009, Australian conscious period care company TOM Organic founded by Aimee Marks initially produced reliable and organic tampons and pads free from chemicals and synthetics. Since then, the Certified B Corporation has expanded into a reusable, zero waste range that includes “The Period Cup” menstrual cup and “The Period Brief”, a range of comfortable period-proof underwear made from organic cotton. Its products can be found on the shelves of Australia’s major supermarkets, making sustainable period products more accessible to the everyday woman.
Disclosure: Details correct at time of publishing. This list features affiliate partners and if you make a purchase using a link we may make a commission. This curated list does not fully take into account all the ethical considerations that are unique to each individual. Before making a purchase, we encourage you to do your own research paying particular attention to the supply chain and your own particular set of ethics. You can also check out online tools and apps that provide product reviews and brand ratings here. Click here to read more about our policies.
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Cover image via Lunette.