Guest Post: My Journey Trying Reusable Period Pads
Reusable products are becoming the new normal. Everyone is trying to be more eco-conscious and reduce their carbon footprint. It’s not a movement anymore, it’s a necessity.
My journey started out of intrigue more than anything and I’ll be entirely honest; I was initially dismissive of reusable period ware and how it would function, but I caved when a friend told me how they were a total game changer for her. Trying such a personal product can feel extremely risky. I kept asking myself; what if it leaks? What if people can see it when I’m out through my clothes? These are all also normal worries I have with disposable menstrual wear, but even more so with reusables. Today, I would like to give my thoughts on eco-friendly menstrual wear, and my informed thought on Bayrli’s Period Pads. This is my experience, my journey.
My Period Product Journey
Before we start, let me introduce myself. My name is Diana, and I am currently a masters student in NYC. I have always been conscious of my waste and my impact, and I consider myself to be pretty frugal when it comes to personal products such as these. You would think reusable pads were right up my alley but I just wasn’t convinced of the upside of washable period wear until I actually tried them.
When I first started my period many moons ago, I used disposable pads like everyone else I knew and was completely put off straight away. There is absolutely no part of it I like. To me they felt sweaty, itchy, clammy, and uncomfortable. I especially hated the sticky adhesive that never seemed to work, or would stick to the pad itself. I was, and still am constantly worried I’m leaking or that someone could see it through my clothes. I hated the experience so much I switched to using tampons pretty early on. I still reach for disposables in an emergency, but pads as a whole were just not for me.
I continued to use tampons throughout high school and now in college only using pads or liners as back-ups on my extra heavy days. But as I chat with friends, and as I read more about the impact of single-use items on a global scale, I urged myself to try something different. I did try a reusable menstrual cup, but again, this was just uncomfortable and not for me, plus I never felt confident enough with just the cup and had to wear a pad as well so in my eyes it defeated the purpose.
Trying Reusable Period Pads
Like everyone, I opened up my phone and Googled ‘reusable sanitary pads’. From Wiki articles to blogs, from interviews to new reports, and from YouTube reviews to brand information pages, I researched so much and so often that I gave up. Too many people had differing opinions, and while for me the environmental argument is crystal clear, and I knew I would save money, I just didn’t trust the comfort or the fit of a washable pad.
And then, one night at a bar, my friend nonchalantly takes a reusable pad from her wristlet, and is back from the bathroom in a flash. That’s it. No concerns, no delay, not a second thought. I asked her and she says she always keeps a pair in her bag, and as a result she never has to worry and never runs out. No more asking strangers for pads or tampons or digging for change and using a pricey dispenser in the bathroom. I will happily confess that I am a naturally lazy and sometimes forgetful person, especially after long days of classes, studying, and working at a full time job, having reusable pads on hand all the time was such an attractive idea.
As someone who has always had heavy periods I knew what I needed. So back to Google, and a few new keywords were put in; ‘eco-friendly’ ‘menstrual pad’ ‘certified’ ‘offer’. And I just went from there. I thought reusable period pads would be an amazing and sustainable way to get that extra peace of mind and protection without having to constantly buy disposable pads, and constantly wonder where the closest one was to me. Getting caught out without a pad when you get your period is a nightmare and it was definitely something I wanted to avoid. Cutting waste and saving money too – that sure sounded good!
I bought one pad each from three different brands; all brands who had a very clear ethical message, good price points, good quality, good customer support, and good absorbency.
A Love Affair Begins
These are just so comfortable. For me, it’s a case of try once and never go back. The Bayrli pads are my favorite. This is simply down to how they fit around my underwear and the absorbency. I’m not interest in how they look (hey, who else is going to see these?) or how tiny they fold up (very tiny!). I just want to know I’ll be comfortable and clean and protected. Even the washing is simple because there is just nothing to it for me. Regular wash and air dry and I can reuse them again.
Bayrli reusable pads are incredibly flexible and I did not expect this. They are equally adept at lazy days around apartment, a long nights sleep, or my morning run. It is so comfy and designed to provide full coverage for protection against leaks. The versatility has been unexpected and such a delight. The same must be said for the other brands too; three different designs all offering so much more comfort and absorbency than single-use menstrual pads that I absolutely dreaded using.
I am so glad I took the plunge to try reusable menstrual pads. I just wish I had done it a lot sooner.
How I Use My Cloth Pads
On my lighter days I change my Bayrli pads every 5-6 hours. I simply wrap them up with the closure snaps when done and place them back in my sanitary bag for when I get home. This makes it so easy to use reusable pads outside the home.
When I get home they go right in the washing machine. I realise this might sound disgusting to some, but honestly, this process becomes second nature. I don’t bat an eyelid anymore. Sure, at first it was a little weird to me and my friends who use reusable pads said the same too when they initially switched to reusable menstrual products, but that hesitation quickly subsides.
I’m glad I made the switch. This is right for me, but it may not be for you. Just take your time with your research, and start slowly with one or two to test and build from there. I know I’ll never look back.
Disclaimer: This article has been written by Diana Jeffries, a customer of Bayrli. We advised Diana on which products may best suit her needs when she wrote to us via email. After sampling the products, we offered to send out a complete range of our Period Pads to her in exchange for her thoughts on them in the form of a blog post. This article has not been edited in any way by us.