Been thinking of ditching your old period care products in favour of an organic alternative? We’re breaking down why it could be a good thing for your body, why it’s definitely a good thing for the environment, and what you can expect when you make the switch. Let’s see what all the organic fuss is about…
It’s somewhat of a buzzword. Everyone and their Nan is raving about organic, so you already know it must be a positive thing... but what exactly does it mean? It’s easiest to apply the term to food, as the supermarket is probably the first place you came across the word ‘organic’.
According to the Soil Association, organic is a system of food production and farming that aims to produce high-quality food while benefiting the whole system; the people, crops, animals and planet. Though there are other features that make something organic, its most simplified definition is usually the growing of crops without the use of pesticides and chemicals.
Organic farmers work according to a strict set of legal guidelines to ensure their farms look after everything from the soil to the animals to the ecosystems that they deal with. So when you see the organic symbol on products, you can guarantee what you’re buying has been produced without negatively impacting these things in the process, and doesn’t introduce unnecessary, potentially damaging chemicals into the environment. A positive move in today’s climate.
Good question! The environment is a big factor in the production of crops, and since tampons and pads are primarily made from cotton (that’s typically non-organic cotton, if you’re using the majority of high street brands), the origin of this cotton and how it is produced must be considered.
Each year in the UK, the disposal of single-use menstrual products like pads, tampons and applicators generates more than 200,000 tonnes of waste. That waste inevitably ends up in landfills, and when it contains the pesticides and potentially harmful chemicals associated with non-organic cotton, it continues to cause major problems for our environment.
The short answer… maybe. More research is needed to discover the potential benefits of switching to organic period products, but many have reported their own experiences when changing from non-organic to organic brands and options. Some note less irritation, while others claim their period became shorter and lighter when they started using organic tampons, and as a result, less frequent changes were necessary.
One reason to consider changing might be the studies that show exposure to certain chemicals could interfere with the body’s hormones. The vagina is actually one of the most absorbent parts of the body, so using any non-organic products means chemicals could be absorbed into your body.
Dioxins (sometimes found in mainstream tampon brands) are categorised as carcinogens by the World Health Organisation, and while these feature in very small amounts in period products, opinions differ on their potential to cause long-term harm. For many, the idea of putting these near their vagina at all prompts a big NO THANK YOU. If that’s you, organic period products are a great alternative.
Remember, even when using organic tampons, you are still at risk of developing TSS (toxic shock syndrome). Always pay attention to the advice on the packaging to find out how often you should change your tampon to stay safe.
They are, as absorbency levels are much the same. When it comes to pads, many non-organic brands typically contain a large percentage of plastic and a plastic-derived gel inside the absorbent core. Organic sanitary towels don’t contain this gel, however when comparing absorbency of organic pads with non-organic pads, tests found the absorption volume is comparable. In layman's terms, organic pads absorb almost the same amount of blood as non-organic.
Some do feel a difference when using organic products. Switching to organic is like switching to a natural deodorant; it takes time for your body to adjust. While organic tampons usually feel no different to insert and use, some users of organic pads report the ‘skin feel’ is different. This is because they don’t have the absorbent gel core, which can make organic pads feel slightly more damp.
If you’re thinking this is a negative, it’s not. In fact, the skin of the vulva is better off not being dried out by chemicals and retaining some humidity - as nature intended! Though you may notice it feels less dry in the beginning, you’ll get used to the skin feel and, like many others who have switched, enjoy that organic products feel less dry and itchy on skin.
The decision is entirely up to you. Although there can be benefits to switching to organic, the decision will likely depend on your own health situation, and your current relationship with your period products.
If you are curious to try organic period products, whether the reason is to ditch potentially harmful chemicals or protect the environment, we would recommend trying them for a month or two and see how you like them.
Yoppie’s range of eco pads, cotton liners and biodegradable tampons are all made with Certified Organic Cotton (certified by ICEA under GOTS regulation), which has been grown without using chemical herbicides, fertilisers or pesticides, and they’re hypoallergenic, which helps prevent the risk of irritations and allergies. No Yoppie product contains perfumes or superabsorbents, and our tampons feature a special safety layer wrapped around the absorbent core, which prevents fibres from remaining inside your body after removal.
Got a question about making the switch to organic? Shout out in our private Facebook group or drop us a note on Insta @itsyoppie. Don't forget that our personalised period box can get organic tampons, PMS supplements and more delivered easily and regularly through your letterbox with an all-organic ingredient promise and fully sustainable packaging.
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