Hey everyone! We've been doing some thinking lately about accessibility and what that means when it comes to period care.
There are a variety of barriers that may affect someones access to eco-friendly products whether it be finances, geographical location, consumer representation, etc. We've compiled a list of some basic menstrual products that work for us AND the environment. These brands are founded on both sustainability and equality. Check 'em out below!
It’s sad to say, but period poverty is a very real thing. It’s estimated that people living in remote Canadian communities will pay up to $45 for a box of pads, or often go without due to insufficient supplies in the area.
Thank goodness for sustainable period product brands like joni who are dedicated to overcoming this barrier by making organic and ethically made pads affordable and accessible! With their free-shipping model, joni is able to offer customers living in small and remote communities access to their biodegradable pads for the same price as those living in larger and more resource extensive towns and cities.
And did you know plastic pads can take over 300 years to biodegrade? joni’s pads will break down in one. joni pads leave behind the hyper feminine and overt plastic packaging that has traditionally dominated the industry, while achieving the quality and effectiveness we have come to expect from organic materials.
joni has dropped the outdated term “feminine hygiene” and opts for using inclusive language such as “people who menstruate” to encapsulate their entire audience, effectively acknowledging that not all women menstruate, some men do, and that there’s a broad spectrum in between.
joni has launched an initiative called #getjonigivejoni - one-for-one, they distribute period products all across Canada to people in need. Since their launch, they’ve donated over 38,608 pads! That’s the equivalent to helping 4,826 people who would normally struggle to find period care each month. Their motive is best said here, directly from their website: “There are over 9 million people who menstruate in Canada, of which one in three under the age of 25 lives in period poverty, alone. Together, we can achieve period equity.”
Their website: https://getjoni.com/
Viv is another earth friendly and mission-driven brand striving to offer sustainable, low waste, and affordable period product alternatives! They have an excellent feature product; the black Viv Menstrual Cup. Made with 100% medical grade silicone, these menstrual cups are a fantastic way to taper plastic consumption and the use of disposables when it comes to your time of the month.
As a substitute for plastic-lined pads or plastic applicator tampons, menstrual cups can be safely used again and again ultimately saving you hundreds, if not thousands of dollars within a lifetime! The average menstruator spends between $60-$200 a year on tampons or pads. The Viv menstrual cup is $25 CAD and can last anywhere between 6 months to 10 years making it a fabulous zero-waste and affordable period care option. Menstrual cups can be used during any activity (except vaginal intercourse), regardless of activity level and flow.
A final bonus - their packaging! Their Viv cup comes featured in a recyclable paper box made with 30% less paper than regular boxes and is printed with sustainable ink.
REUSABLE TAMPON APPLICATOR
Thinx has recently launched their new product re.t.a, the first FDA-cleared reusable tampon applicator! Made with medical grade materials, re.t.a eliminates single use plastic and is an incredibly handy and sustainable period product. Thinx’s applicator directly combats the micro-plastic pollution crisis that plastic applicators have contributed to for decades.
According to the U.K organization “Friends of the Earth”, it is predicted that a person who menstruates will throw “away” approximately 200kgs (400 pounds) of tampons, pads and applicators in a lifetime. Of course “away” doesn’t mean into thin air and these products wind up polluting landfills or being flushed down the toilet. That's an average of 11,000-16,000 tampon applicators in a lifetime! re.t.a solves this problem.
Freda is an amazing brand dedicated to fighting period poverty. If tampons are your thing, Freda is a great place to get tampons with or without an applicator. Affordable period care is the goal with 20 regular non-applicator organic cotton tampons tallying up to less than $5 CAD!!
Freda donates a portion of their profits to charities that address period poverty such as “The Red Box Project”,“Blood Good Period”, and Beauty Banks. They advocate and campaign for universal access to period care products and young girls' right to education, while being eco friendly with most, if not all of their products. Their applicators are made of plant based plastics and their pads are made out of wood pulp and other more eco-renewable materials. They are an incredibly honest, fact based, and inspiring brand.
Check them out and see what impact a sustainable mindset can can do here: https://myfreda.com/
These are just a few amazing companies and period product alternatives we found that could help replace what you would normally pick up at the drugstore. And there are so many more! If you have any questions about other products and brands, please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org!