5 Alternatives To Pads And Tampons You Should Think About Trying

Ever heard of a menstrual sponge?

Women's Health |

We’ve all heard horror stories about tampons leading to bacterial infections if you have an oops moment and leave one up there. And then there’s toxic shock syndrome, a dangerous – albeit rare – condition associated with not using tampons as directed, or not changing them as indicated every eight to 12 hours (or less, to be super-safe). Then there’s the alternative: sanitary towels. Some people just don’t like them. And here’s a green-alert thought – where do all those used pads and tampons end up anyway?

READ MORE: Wait A Second – Are Tampons Legitimately Bad For You?

While tampons are considered safe, if you’re looking for an alternative that isn’t a regular pad, or you’d just like to be more considerate to the environment, why not give one of these options a try?

1. Woman-Kind Menstrual Sponges


Sound weird? Well, give them a chance – because these sponge “tampons” ticks all the green boxes: 100 percent natural, biodegradable and sustainably harvested. They’re also free of harsh chemicals, and can be reused over several months before they start to break down and return harmlessly to the Earth. R82 for a pack of two (small and extra-large) at Faithful To Nature.

READ MORE: 5 Things You Didn’t Know About Toxic Shock Syndrome

2. Mooncup Menstrual Cup


The Mooncup is a reusable menstrual cup, which will last for years. Bonus: It can hold up to three times more liquid than a tampon and is free of the harsh chemicals sometimes found in conventional sanitary products. R599 at Faithful To Nature. Alternatively, check out the budget-friendly Goddess Cup (R255 at Faithful To Nature). Got a low cervix? Try the Merula Low Cervix Cup (R740 at Faithful To Nature).

READ MORE: Menstrual Cups Are Having A Moment – Here’s What It’s Like To Wear One

3. Hannahpad Medium Pad


Hannahpad cloth menstrual pads are washable, reusable, leak-proof (yes!) and made with a 100 percent organic cotton cover, with no harsh bleaches to irritate your delicate bits. They can be reused for up to three years, so they’re much kinder to the planet (and your wallet) than disposable pads. R130 at Faithful To Nature.

READ MORE: 7 Shocking Things Your First Period Can Tell You About Your Health

4. Bakgat Period Panties


How’s this for a great reusable menstrual product? They look just like a regular pair of panties – but they’re absorbent and totally eliminate the need for a pad or tampon when Aunt Flo arrives. Bakgat Period Panties come in a liner, with regular and heavy absorbency levels, and might just be the cutest good environmental choice you can make this year. R360 at Faithful To Nature.

READ MORE: Your Itchy Vagina Might Be Caused By One OF These Hidden Culprits

5. Natracare Organic Cotton Regular Tampons


Okay, so these are tampons – but they’re a cool option because they’re apparently the only fully certified organic cotton tampons available in the world today. They’re non-chlorine bleached and don’t contain synthetic materials, like rayon, or chemical additives such as binders or surfactants. Nice. R64 at Faithful To Nature. Also try HerPeriod Tampons (R40 at Faithful To Nature) – the packaging is biodegradable!

Black Friday Bonus!


Sheba Super Plus Tampons – was R89, now R44.50!

R 44.50


These Sheba tampons are made from Certified Organic Cotton and biodegradable materials, ensuring an alternative product that is gentler on your body and on our earth. Aaaaand… they’re massively reduced for Black Friday.

READ MORE ON: Health Health Advice Periods