While using cloth is hazardous to health while menstruating, using sanitary pads poses a threat to the environment as it is non-biodegradable.
While you can ‘stay free’ during and choose not to ‘whisper’ about menstruation, these eco-friendly sanitary pads are your way of contributing to the environment and letting the world remain green for the generations to come.
Since we do not have a proper waste disposal system for sanitary pads, burning them releases harmful chemical toxins in the air. Also, they would remain in the soil for years if they are not burnt. According to the Solid Waste Management Rules, 2016, it is mandatory sanitary pads and diapers makers to put in place a disposal mechanism by giving a pouch or wrapper along with the product (which they do). But still, a large number of these pads are making their way into India’s water bodies, soil and sewage structures.
According to IANS, menstrual waste is estimated to be 113,000 tonnes annually. So what now? We cannot stop using sanitary pads and we have to stop harming the environment. What do we do? We use biodegradable sanitary napkins. There is another advantage to using these biodegradable alternatives. You will be free of the rashes on your skin caused by the chemical laden ones.
Here are three companies from whom you could get your supply:
Their website reads, ‘Saathi began in 2015, when its four co-founders – graduates of MIT, Harvard and Nirma University – came together on a mission to create a fully eco-friendly, biodegradable sanitary napkins in India. While working as a production engineer at an MNC in the US, Amrita Saigal, was inspired by the idea of improving women’s access to sanitary pads in India. Kristin Kagetsu, had previously commercialized and launched sustainable natural-dye crayons made by local artisans in Uttarakhand, India, and was passionate about sourcing through grassroots supply chains. Tarun Bothra brought technical expertise and local knowledge to develop the product and set up manufacturing and Grace Kane brought product development and operations knowledge to set up the team. Together, they conceived and developed a biodegradable sanitary napkin using locally sourced banana fibre from the state of Gujarat, where Saathi is based.’
The 100% biodegradable pads made by Saathi are made from plant-based materials. The absorbent property in Saathi’s pads is given by banana fibres. They buy the stems from local farmers and use it to manufacture pads. A box of 8 pads will cost you around ₹180. It comes in only one variant.
You can shop here: Saathi Biodegradable Pads
Heyday intends to start a period revolution by producing eco-friendly, natural, leak-proof and anti-bacterial pads that are made from bamboo and corn fibre that are known to have natural sterilisation effects. The advantages of buying from Heyday are six-fold with the seventh being saving the environment.
Their website states, ‘Regular pads have 90% plastic! They block airflow to the vagina, allow chemicals to enter the bloodstream and increase chances of cervical cancer, UTIs, yeast infections, rashes, allergies and skin sensitivity.’ Their pads come in two variants, ‘Maxi Fluff XL’ and ‘Ultra Thin XL’. The former will cost you ₹79 for 7 napkins and ₹155 for 14. The latter will cost you ₹85 for 7 napkins and ₹165 for 14.
You can shop here: Heyday Biodegradable Pads
Their website reads, ‘Eco Femme is a women-led social enterprise founded in 2010. Based in Tamil Nadu, India, our goal is to create environmental and social change through revitalising menstrual practices that are healthy, environmentally sustainable, culturally responsive and empowering. We produce and sell washable cloth pads, provide menstrual health education to adolescents, and open dialogues on menstruation all along the way.
There is something unique about how EcoFemme works. ‘We are a social enterprise dedicated to being a scalable project with a demonstrable impact that can be an example of how business and social responsibility really can go hand in hand…We seek to create a truly holistic approach to menstruation through integrating ethical business practices, production processes that engage rural women as cloth pad producers and culturally sensitive, life-affirming education about the menstrual experience.’
They have a variety of products for menstrual hygiene like panty liners, cups and other accessories. Their pads are reusable and one pad costs ₹245.
You can shop here: EcoFemme Reusable Pads
Now you can stop Mother Nature from bleeding, as you bleed. What say? Don’t forget to share this article with your female friends.
Preview Photo: livemint.com