Back to Basics

I thought I'd make my post today about something some of us are very uncomfortable with. Periods. Yes, that's right I'm going there again. Over the last few years as many of you know I've been working to make myself healthier.

I've changed my diet, changed what other things I put in my body, like prescription medicines as well as making sure that I try to cover my body in as few chemicals as possible. I've switched from traditional deodorant to a the crystal and tried to replace my clothes, be it slowly, with clothes made from organic materials, such as organic cotton.

While looking into the idea of organic cotton, it dawned on me that perhaps my tampons were not good for me. There's a lot of myths out there about how bad they are, but there is some good information too. Snopes, a known mythbuster has this to say about tampons.

Tampons contain two potentially harmful things, Rayon for absorbency and Dioxin a chemical used for bleaching. Dioxin is a carcinogenic meaning associated with cancer and Rayon leaves fibers behind in the vagina which contributes to TSS (Toxic Shock Syndrome).

After reading that I switched completely over to pads alone. I thought, Hey this has to be better for me. I mean, it's not up inside my body pushing those chemicals into my body. PLUS nothing is being flushed into our water system right? Wrong!

I found that the average woman throws away 250-300 pounds of tampons, pads and applicators in her lifetime. The majority end up in landfills. That's 15,0000 sanitary pads or tampons. The plastic applicator may not biodegrade for several hundred years and the most common form of trash on beaches are plastic tampon applicators. ~The Keeper~

With that in mind I decided to go back to basics. Yup that's right I made my own pads. With the help of a wonderful link to I found several different patterns and instructions for making different types of pads. I found one I liked and the result is below.

I made them last month and finally got to try them out this month and I have to say was I completely amazed. At first I really thought that I would have a mess on my hands. Hand washing pads in the sink? Eww right? Nope, it was easy breezy. I made a total of 7 pads and thought that would at least give me an example of what I could expect. First, I used less pads. Only one per day. I know you're thinking Ummm you should change more often, but honestly I did't need to. The way the pad absorbs is completely different than the commercial pads. There was no itchiness PLUS I didn't have to add anything to the landfills. WIN WIN!

I know some of you out there might be a little skeptical, but trust me, I too was blown away by the results. And don't worry, if you're not a great seamstress, it's ok. These patterns are really easy to follow. If you don't want to sew at all, you can visit and find a great number of shops that offer them for sale.

So this is what mine ended up looking like. You can see the pattern and the material I used. I started with an old flannel sheet and used some scrap cotton fabric for the lining. So for a total of about 5.00 I made a set of pads that I can toss in the washer and use month after month. SCORE!

That's my latest step towards going green. Becoming more sustainable and going back to basics is what I really long to do.

I hope you folks can find this useful!

Namaste & Blessed Be


Anonymous said...

I've often toyed with the idea of switching to those but I wanted to know how they worked out first. I'd give em a try. :)

Sosanna said...

To me, they work great. I'll never go back. :)

Misty said...

That is so totally cool! I have switched to pads too in the last year. I am looking into getting a diva cup. They seem really awesome and very clean not to mention no throw away! They sell them here at the Hendersonville Co-op for $35. Which would save you money since you only buy it once and it should last you a few years. Here's a link But these that you made look very nice and cheap! Awesome post!

Sosanna said...

I actually tried the diva cup a few years ago. I didn't mind using it so much, however there was a bit of leakage sometimes. You could supplement the cup with these pads as well. I liked these because I didn't have to worry about using public rest rooms if the need came up. Thanks so much for your comment :)

Misty said...

Thanks for the heads up on the leakage thing! I think I will make some of these and then try the diva cup. That way I have both!! Hugs!

Jennifer said...

Interesting. I am wondering how they would work for someone who has very heavy periods though? Thanks for sharing this, I might give them a try someday!

Sosanna said...

Hi Jennifer! I totally "thought" I had heavy periods. I would change several times a day because of the way the pad looked. I've found by talking to others that use home made pads that the store bought ones spread the flow out more so it LOOKS like you're having a heavy flow when actually you're not. It's normal. The companies want you to use more and more so that you need to buy more. In fact when I decided to try them I thought, well, I can use them for the first day or so just to see what happens. I was totally shocked to see that they actually did a great job. That's one of the reasons I made them instead of buying them already made so that I could do it cheaply to figure out if it was a good fit for me.

Thanks so much for your comment, I'm sure others were thinking the same thing.

Lilac Wolf (Angie or Angela) said...

I've been thinking about this, but my lack of ability and money have stopped me. I think I have to look this over again...I have quite a few years before I get to toss pads completely. :) thanks for posting this