3 Sustainable Period Products You Need to Know About

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written by:  Giulia Lallas

editor's note:

I was shocked when I found out about the total waste period products create, so I thought I'd share some awesome sustainable alternatives that I recently discovered. Enjoy!

In the U.S., 7 billion tampons and 12 billion pads are thrown away every year and end up in the landfill. Moreover, the average individual uses 11,000 disposable tampons or pads in their life. From an economic standpoint, the price of a menstrual cup adds up to $136 over a lifetime. In contrast, a regular tampon accumulates to $1,512 over a lifetime. In the hopes of reducing these statistics and making periods more affordable, we’ve listed three of our favorite sustainable period products below, (plus a bonus one). 


Saalt Menstrual Cups

Where to buy:

online, Target; available in the U.S., UK, EU, and Australia

Average Price:

Each individual cup has a starting price of $29

Our Take:

We’re in love with the idea of having a durable period product and have gotten some great recommendations from sustainability lovers about Saalt!
These menstrual cups from the Idaho-based company are made of organic materials. They are designed to last up to TEN years if consistently washed and well-taken care of. Saalt is a certified B Corporation with a commitment to donating 2% of their total income to regions in need, providing funds to education, menstrual health, and sustainability initiatives. Saalt provides an in-depth explanation of how to use a menstrual cup for first-time users as well as a quiz to help consumers find the right menstrual cup size for them.

Organyc Tampons and Pads

Where to buy:

drug stores and grocery stores like CVS or Harris Teeter; available in over 30 countries around the world

Average Price:

around $5-10 per pack of 10-16

Our Take:

We’re obsessed with how soft these are and highly recommend them to avid pad/tampon users!
For those not comfortable with using menstrual cups, organyc pads and tampons are a great alternative to standard pads/tampons. They are wrapped in recycled packaging, made from 100% certified, organic cotton, and are free of chemicals, dyes, and other unnecessary additives. They are completely plastic-free and 100% biodegradable and cost no more than standard tampon/pad companies.

Reusable Sanitary Pads

Where to buy:

Reusable Pads: Etsy, or using products from your own home

Average Price:

Reusable Pads range from $16-22

Our Take:

We’re always down for a DIY if the chance presents itself and love buying from small businesses too, so Reusable Pads offer the perfect mix of the two!
Using a reusable pad is always a good alternative if you are looking to avoid spending money but still want a durable period product. You could either make your own or choose a pre-made one from the market. Just remember to change them at least 6 times a day to be safe. Having 6-8 ready per cycle is best so there is time for each one to dry after it’s washed. If you are looking on the market, be sure to pick pads that are made from sustainable, ethically-sourced materials and good labor practices!

Bonus Item: Menstrual Underwear

Where to buy:

online, Etsy, Nordstrom and various local boutiques depending on location

Average Price:

Range from about $24-42

Our Take:

If you're looking for convenience and comfort, period panties are a must! Just make sure you avoid silver-lining and harsh chemicals in the period panties you choose if possible!
Menstrual underwear provides an extra layer of convenience in that the padding is already built-in, but you have to be careful when it comes to toxic chemicals and silver lining that aim to make products anti-odor. These potential chemicals can be harmful to you and the potential silver in the fabric can leak out of the clothing over time and end up in the landfills. That being said, period underwear made out of organic materials is readily available. They follow the same wash and swap process as reusable sanitary pads. These underwear are comfortable, durable, and come in a wide variety of different sizes and flows.

Saalt Menstrual Cups

Where to buy:

online, Target; available in the U.S., UK, EU, and Australia

Average Price:

Each individual cup has a starting price of $29

Our Take:

We’re in love with the idea of having a durable period product and have gotten some great recommendations from sustainability lovers about Saalt!
These menstrual cups from the Idaho-based company are made of organic materials. They are designed to last up to TEN years if consistently washed and well-taken care of. Saalt is a certified B Corporation with a commitment to donating 2% of their total income to regions in need, providing funds to education, menstrual health, and sustainability initiatives. Saalt provides an in-depth explanation of how to use a menstrual cup for first-time users as well as a quiz to help consumers find the right menstrual cup size for them.

Organyc Tampons and Pads

Where to buy:

drug stores and grocery stores like CVS or Harris Teeter; available in over 30 countries around the world

Average Price:

around $5-10 per pack of 10-16

Our Take:

We’re obsessed with how soft these are and highly recommend them to avid pad/tampon users!
For those not comfortable with using menstrual cups, organyc pads and tampons are a great alternative to standard pads/tampons. They are wrapped in recycled packaging, made from 100% certified, organic cotton, and are free of chemicals, dyes, and other unnecessary additives. They are completely plastic-free and 100% biodegradable and cost no more than standard tampon/pad companies.

Reusable Sanitary Pads

Where to buy:

Reusable Pads: Etsy, or using products from your own home

Average Price:

Reusable Pads range from $16-22

Our Take:

We’re always down for a DIY if the chance presents itself and love buying from small businesses too, so Reusable Pads offer the perfect mix of the two!
Using a reusable pad is always a good alternative if you are looking to avoid spending money but still want a durable period product. You could either make your own or choose a pre-made one from the market. Just remember to change them at least 6 times a day to be safe. Having 6-8 ready per cycle is best so there is time for each one to dry after it’s washed. If you are looking on the market, be sure to pick pads that are made from sustainable, ethically-sourced materials and good labor practices!

Bonus Item: Menstrual Underwear

Where to buy:

online, Etsy, Nordstrom and various local boutiques depending on location

Average Price:

Range from about $24-42

Our Take:

If you're looking for convenience and comfort, period panties are a must! Just make sure you avoid silver-lining and harsh chemicals in the period panties you choose if possible!
Menstrual underwear provides an extra layer of convenience in that the padding is already built-in, but you have to be careful when it comes to toxic chemicals and silver lining that aim to make products anti-odor. These potential chemicals can be harmful to you and the potential silver in the fabric can leak out of the clothing over time and end up in the landfills. That being said, period underwear made out of organic materials is readily available. They follow the same wash and swap process as reusable sanitary pads. These underwear are comfortable, durable, and come in a wide variety of different sizes and flows.



written by:  Giulia Lallas

editor's note:

I was shocked when I found out about the total waste period products create, so I thought I'd share some awesome sustainable alternatives that I recently discovered. Enjoy!

This post may contain affiliate links. Brightly will be compensated if you make a purchase after clicking on these links.

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