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Have you stopped to think about the number of pads and tampons that a woman uses throughout her life? Do you know how long it takes for one of those pads to decompose? And what chemicals do tampons or pads have to make them so white? and so that you have less "smell"?
As you may have calculated, the amount of waste that is generated is more than 10,000 pads and tampons. If we add that these products, their packaging, their applicators and their adhesive strips take more than 300 years to degrade, we can realize the enormous environmental impact that their use generates.
With regard to chemicals we must name: Dioxin, a chemical that is used to whiten the fibers of tampons and that is carcinogenic and toxic.
Asbestos, which in addition to being carcinogenic increases, although it seems incredible, bleeding.
Rayon, a super absorbent synthetic fiber, which by leaving traces of fibers attached to the vaginal walls, helps toxins accumulate, thus favoring infections and toxic shock syndrome.
But are there green and healthy alternatives to these staples? Let's not forget that tampons and disposable pads are a first-world luxury. Most women in many countries do not have access to these assets, limiting their autonomy and independence.
Kenyan girls, for example, lose 20% of school attendance because they cannot afford to pay for pads on period days.
The answer is called a menstrual cup or moon cup. A soft silicone cup that is inserted into the vagina during menstruation to retain flow. This could be considered the revolution of feminine hygiene articles, a very widespread solution already in other countries as a substitute for tampons and pads.
What makes it a revolution? What are its advantages?
For your pocket: The cup can last more than 10 years if it is cared for correctly, and it costs the same as the average cost we spend on tampons and disposable pads for 3 months.
For your health: The cups are made of surgical silicone, a stable material, 100% hypoallergenic - it does not develop bacteria or germs - that does not alter your vaginal flora and is not related to toxic shock syndrome, or fungal or bacterial infections.
For your planet: Avoid the enormous amount of waste generated by the use of disposable pads and tampons.
For your comfort: As nothing comes out of the vagina, it allows wearing any type of underwear during menstruation, as well as using it in any type of situation (playing sports, bathing in the pool, etc).
For your hygiene: As it lacks chemicals, the unpleasant odor that we have associated with menstruation is not produced and it does not alter the natural lubrication of the vagina. Our tips for switching to a menstrual cup:
Perseverance: The first time it may seem difficult to put on and take off but with a little practice you will see that the process is extremely simple.
The cup away from home: The moon cup has a capacity three times greater than a tampon.
Therefore, if we empty it before leaving home, it will not be necessary to do it again for several hours.
If, nevertheless, we need to empty it in public bathrooms where, sometimes, it can be difficult to rinse it, we will solve it by taking a bottle of water, a damp cloth or simply using a little toilet paper, since the silicone is easily cleaned.
Other alternatives: Although it is a part of us, some women are apprehensive about blood and may see the use of the cup as uncomfortable. Or it may be that the abundance of your flow or the practice of some activity where you think that the cup may have small losses makes you rethink its use. The solution, in these cases, would be the use of reusable organic cotton pads.