Friday, February 6, 2015

What Is The Best & Safest Menstrual Products On The Market Today? #Review

As my family embarked on a more natural lifestyle I got to thinking about how unnatural my period protection was. I would typically use tampons or pads when that friendly little reminder that I was not pregnant came knocking on the door.

I never gave much thought to what they were made from though, that is not until I switched to cloth diapers and realized what was in traditional diapers! That's a whole other blog post in itself though. Today, I want to share some important information from one woman to another, whether you are "natural" or "crunchy" or not I think this information is important for everyone to know, because I doubt we think about it very much.

 We have all heard the warning for tampons...toxic shock syndrome, but do you know what causes it or why? Well, according to the Mayo Clinic's Website, toxic shock syndrome is caused by "bacteria, most commonly Staphylococcus aureus (staph), causes toxic shock syndrome. It can also be caused by group A streptococcus (strep) bacteria."

So, that leads me to the question of how does that bacteria get into your body in the first place? Well, have you ever asked yourself what your tampons are made from? Have you ever wondered why we have ingredients on everything else but the manufacturers of your sanitary products do not have to disclose what their products are made from? This is because your pads and tampons are considered "medical devices", go figure!

Some of the items I found that could very well be in your sanitary products include but are certainly not limited to chemicals like BPA and BPS which can disrupt embryonic development. They are also linked to heart disease and cancer. Phthalates, which give paper tampon applicators a smooth finish, are known to disregulate gene expression, and then you have DEHP which may lead to multiple organ damage. That doesn't even include those products with odor control or fragrances.

So, with all these things to think about I began looking for alternatives. While I was pregnant with my son I began my search, the first thing I thought about was just cloth pads, so I contacted a company The Pink Lemonade Shop, who so kindly agreed to send me two of her post pardum pads to try after my son was born.

Let me say after pushing out a baby the last thing you want is a scratchy plastic/paper pad rubbing on the nether regions! The soft plush velour of Pink Lemonade Shop's post pardum pads was like silk sheets on your body! It was heavenly to say the least! The pads are used just like your typical pads only when you are done you toss them into the wash and reuse them.

More recently I have tried these awesome little things called Sea Sponge tampons! They are all natural and are more absorbent than any tampon or pad I have ever tried!  The company I got mine from is Jade & Pearl. Now, the sea sponges took a minute to get in and back out. While the tampons have a nifty little chemical filled applicator the sea sponge you just have to insert manually so to say. Although I was able to insert mine with little effort and no issues.

Removing your sea sponge might also take a wee bit of practice without the GMO filled cotton string you don't really have anything to grab, so you typically have to just, again manually grab the end of your sponge and remove it gently, so as not to tear it. But once you have it removed you simply rinse it clean and reinsert. I found this to be easiest while in the shower. I only did mine twice a day so I would shower in the morning and once before bed which is typical when that monthly friend comes to visit anyways.

After I was done for the month, I soaked my sponge in a cup of warm water and 5 drops of Tea Tree essential oil to clean and sanitize it, now it sits in it's small little sack waiting for the next use. I really liked the sea sponge over traditional tampons!

I did try one last product and that was the Diva Cup. I heard some awesome reviews so I purchased one, I must say it was complicated. Of course, that might just have been me too, but I found it uncomfortable once inserted. The little tab that is on the end which is used to remove it just made it awkward.

Now, when I got my Diva Cup it was towards the end of my cycle so I didn't get as much use out of it as the previous two items, so I am going to give it another try next month when my BFF returns, so make sure you stay tuned to see if my opinion changes or not.

As it stands right now my favorite product is the Jade & Pearl sea sponges, followed by the Pink Lemonade Shop pads and then the Diva Cup comes in last. While I am no doctor or specialist on the subject I can only tell you what my personal opinions and thoughts on each of these products is.

Have you ever tried a reusable menstrual product? Which was it and how did you like it?


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