Is Your Tampon Poisonous?
We exercise, eat (mostly) healthy + sustainable foods, and even consider health and environmental impacts when searching for cosmetics, but what about feminine care products? It's gross to think that standard store brands aren't as clean as you might think. The average American woman uses 10,000 tampons in her lifetime. So, let's not burden some of our most sensitive body parts with bleached, pesticide-laden cotton or plastic.
what you need to know about conventional tampons and pads
feminine hygiene product manufacturers are not required to disclose ingredients
the majority of tampons contain synthetic materials like Rayon and Polyester (not biodegradable — ew, do we really want these things to last FOREVER?)
non-organic cotton tampons may have pesticide residues
conventional tampons may contain toxic disinfection byproducts from the chlorine bleaching process, including dioxins and furans
Your Best Option
Silicone menstrual cups like Lunette are the best way to go, hands down. However, if you're not quite ready to go that route, it’s time to switch to organic cotton. Now you can even go a step further by joining an organic tampon subscription service. There are a few of these out there now, but our favorite is Cora because not only are their products made with certified organic cotton at an affordable price, they also provide menstrual products to women in need around the world.
Instead of just sending their products abroad—which can undermine the local economy—Cora partners with social enterprise organizations globally that are working on period management so girls don't need to miss school. Their goal is to empower women and girls in need.
The subscription service is great - it's so convenient to have Cora shipped straight to your door. And their boxes are customizable! Sustainable products that contribute to social enterprise? Count us in.
Cameron Bruns Ewing is the managing editor of Just Us Gals. She works at Hubspot and is pursuing a graduate degree in environmental sustainability. Follow her outdoor adventures & travels via Instagram and her sustainability work via LinkedIn.