Awkward? Totally. But I’m always willing to take one for the team.
Maybe you haven’t given much thought to what your feminine care products are made out of. I didn’t for a long time. I grew up using conventional tampons and pads that are filled with harmful chemicals. If I’m putting something where the sun never shines, it has to be as “healthy” as possible.
Let’s get into the bad stuff first, so you know exactly what to avoid:
- Synthetic Rayon. Most conventional pads and tampons contain rayon instead of cotton. Rayon is a synthetic fiber that is used instead of cotton because it is cheaper. It is made of bleached cellulose fibers derived from wood pulp. Rayon is more absorbent than cotton, which is not a good thing. The synthetic fibers increase your risk for Toxic Shock Syndrome (TSS) because they pull more moisture or can leave fibers behind and increase bacteria growth. You’ve probably heard of TSS and/or have seen it on conventional tampon packaging. No Bueno.
- Non-organic cotton. Cotton is one of the world’s dirtiest crops, meaning it is heavily sprayed with synthetic pesticides and herbicides. It is also likely that the cotton is genetically modified. There was a study done recently that found 85% of tampons to be contaminated with glyphosate, which is a dangerous herbicide linked to cancer.
- Fragrances. Many feminine products are fragranced. Fragrances are NOT regulated and can contain a combination of about 3,000 different chemicals, including carcinogens, phthalates, irritants, and neurotoxins. They are extremely harmful and are endocrine disruptors, which means they can mess with your hormones. You might think you need scented products during your period to mask smells. Well actually, the reason there are “smells” down there is likely because of all the toxic chemicals in your products. According to Hesta Organic: The strong odor derives from the disposables blocking the airway to your genitals and also from the chemicals mixing with the blood.
- Bleached or dyed tampons. In order to make your tampons and pads sparkly white, they are likely bleached with chlorine dioxide. The byproduct of this is dioxins, which have been linked with cancer and reproductive issues like endometriosis and pelvic inflammatory disease (source). Some products might even contain toxic dyes, too.
So, what tampons should you be using? ORGANIC, non-dyed or bleached cotton tampons. I love Cora tampons because they are made with premium materials such as: organic cotton, they are hypoallergenic, biodegradable, compostable, and vegan. (NOT sponsored, I just love their products). I love the brand because they are very in tune with details. For example, they make their wrappers to be QUIET when you open them. How amazing is that? What’s also cool: Cora makes applicator-free tampons.
Have you tried organic tampons?