The quote above is a few years old. However, think about that number. It’s huge. And scary. It’s never even crossed my mind until now, where my sanitary products end up. I guess I was naive and just assumed that they were recycled somehow. So it got me thinking, how much waste could I have personally contributed to this problem. I’ll tell you, because I worked it out. 5100.
And that’s just me. Then you think about all of the women in your life that might have a similar figure and it gets bigger and bigger.
For a long time, I have toyed with the idea of using a menstrual cup. It’s been discussed and then ignored and then brought up again and the answer was always ‘one day’.
In 2018, I started to make my journey into minimalism and a more sustainable way of living. I started researching eco friendly menstrual products and came across so many options. After much research, I took the final step and bought a cup. I chose OrganiCup. They boasted ‘no leaks’ and ‘no chemicals’ and the product is vegan friendly. They use surgical grade silicon which should last for years and is friendly to the body. Check out the website for more info.
When it arrived, I was impressed by the packaging. No plastic! Joy! It came in a cardboard box, cleverly with printed instructions and care tips. Inside that, was a small cloth bag containing the product. No obvious branding so it would be discreet should you need to take out anywhere in public.
So obviously, I couldn’t endorse a product without testing it first. When I opened the packaging initially, I did immediately think to myself ‘what the hell is that?‘ and ‘how on earth is that even going inside my vagina?‘. Unlike normal people who would read the instructions, I decide to just give it ago. Let me tell you now, do not just ‘give it ago’. I think I damaged something. Really. Luckily for me, after 24 hours my vagina felt pretty happy again (aside from the imminent release of the devil). I resumed on day 2 and read the instructions. Thoroughly. So after doing that vital step, I attempted insertion. I was in the bathroom for a good 20 minutes. I was trying to work out how the hell this thing works, trying a variety of different, strange, unconventional positions in my bathroom, starkers.
I got it! I found my groove. So step 3 was to actually use it for the length of my flow. At first I wasn’t sure, I was at work and I was so paranoid that I was going to leak. Especially because I’d forgotten backup, and I wear light blue scrubs. It’s cool, because it was leak free. The website says you can wear it for up to 12 hours and it holds 3 tampons worth of liquid. I had it in for about 9 hours, comfortably, and it was fine.
Taking it out was a whole other challenge. I think it’ll take some practice to get this bit right!
Overall, I’m pretty impressed. I don’t really know what I was expecting. This is genuinely a product that I can stand behind. I spent a week leak free. It was comfortable and I didn’t have to worry about changing or emptying. I will definitely continue to use the menstrual cup. However, I think that I’d like to invest in some other options too!
I don’t want this to be a preachy post. But if you’re on the less waste hype, which is awesome by the way (I’m on it too 😉 ) I’d really encourage you to take a challenge to change up your feminine hygiene products if you feel comfortable with it. I think it might be the best thing I’ve ever done.