Having A More Sustainable Period with Natracare | AD

Hi! Welcome to my blog. I’m so excited to be talking about having a more sustainable period today. This post is a paid partnership with Natracare, a brand who has changed the game with compostable period products since the 80s. Reusable period options such as cups can’t be used by everyone and if disposables are the right choice for you & your body, then I really think that Natracare is the best option!

Related: 10 Easy Low-Waste Bathroom Swaps

The Problem with Plastic in our Period Products

Scarily, 90% of standard menstrual pads are made from plastic, as well as a tampon’s applicator & string. There are 2 main places that this plastic will end up…

Landfill: Plastic can take over 450 years to break down in landfill. Over the course of their lifetime, someone who has periods uses 11,000 products on average. You can imagine the immense waste that’s built up each year. Even if they do break down, it’s only into smaller pieces called secondary microplastics which still have an effect on our wildlife and soil.

The Ocean: It’s estimated that almost 1.5 billion sanitary products are flushed down the toilet every year in the UK. The Marine Societies research shows that for every 100m of British beach, there are 4 pads and a tampon that have washed up. It’s important to remember that this is only the impact we can see – and that there are much worse things going on under the surface. Over time, due to the sun and the waves, large plastics break down into those pesky microplastics I mentioned earlier. Marine life is severely impacted by these, 90% of seabirds and 1 in 2 turtles have plastic in their stomachs.

What You Need To Know About Chemicals In Period Products

Along with plastic, standard pads contain a bunch of chemicals and unnecessary components. Gels made from crude-oil are used to increase absorption, chlorine is used to bleach the products and synthetic perfumes and dyes are used.

Some chemicals (dioxins & furans) that are frequently used in the conventional bleaching method are carcinogenic. There is a bleaching method which uses chlorine compounds instead of chlorine gas (the gas method is where the chemicals are) however it still creates POPs. POPs are Persistent organic pollutants which are also known as ‘forever chemicals’ as they don’t degrade.

The type of cotton used is also important. Cotton is a natural material so it makes sense to assume that it’s good for us and the environment. Unfortunately, this isn’t true. It’s a thirsty plant, often grown by workers on low pay and with many chemicals such as pesticides. I went into more detail in my Everything You Need To Know About Organic Cotton post, but the low-down is that organic cotton is much better than it’s traditionally grown alternative.

Why You Should Choose Natracare Over Standard, Disposable Period Products

So, now we’ve chatted a bit about the harmful impacts of standard disposable period products on the environment, I wanted to introduce you to my sponsors for this post – Natracare. They are a brand who is giving us an amazing alternative to the polluting period products.

Just a little side note: as I mentioned before, not everyone can use reusable menstrual options and there should be no guilt or eco-shame in that! Your health and wellbeing comes first and you need to do what is best for your body. 

Natracare products are plastic free, chlorine free, perfume free, vegan, compostable and biodegradable, certified organic and they donate 1% of their return to charity via 1 Percent for the Planet.

I was particularly interested in the biodegradability and compostability of the products and you really can compost their products in your garden’s compost bin. Since their products are plastic-free and made with natural materials, you can chop/break up the items and then pop them in your compost bin. They take around 12 months to biodegrade but the recommended time is 18-24 months just to be safe.

You can find Natracare in Waitrose or online on Ocado, Ethical Superstore & Amazon if you’re in the UK. For those in the USA, try Wholefoods or Amazon. If you’re elsewhere – don’t worry, you can check out the entire list of stockists here. The prices are from £1.50 – £3 depending on which product you’re buying.

Final Thoughts

If you have any questions about sustainable periods, Natracare or anything else mentioned here then let me know in the comments and I’ll do my best to answer! How do you have a sustainable period? Have you tried Natracare? I would love to know in the comments!

Check out Natracare…

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23 Comments

  1. “90% of standard menstrual pads are made from plastic” wow, that is a truly scary statistic. Even more so when you think about where we’re actually using those pads. I haven’t heard of Natracare but I will definitely look into them now, thanks for raising awareness of this, Jess!

    1. Isn’t it just! I hope you can try them, they’re way better for the planet and, due to them not using all those unnecessary chemicals, for your body too!x

  2. The chemicals in sanitary products are so scary! I have some reusable period pants that I was gifted last year and I love them but they are on the more expensive side so it’s a big financial commitment to get enough pairs to last a full cycle. I really want to try cups too but I’m a bit of a wimp about that kind of thing and find them a little intimidating so natural products like this definitely still have their place and are so much better than traditional options x

    Sophie

    1. I know! Love that you’re using those, I agree they can be a big upfront cost! Cups are also a great option but due to them not working for everyone I think that these products are such a good way to make your cycle more ecofriendly xx

  3. I’ve never heard of these but I have been looking for ways to use less single use plastic. I don’t like the idea of a menstrual cup and find reusable cotton pads aren’t great for heavy flow days. These could be a great option to try.

  4. It’s quite scary to think about how many chemicals are in sanitary products, plastics too. When I was younger I never really thought about the ramifications of disposing them and what they really contained but this has made me more aware! Currently I’ve switched over to a menstrual cup and am loving it but this is a sure swap I’d consider trying out if I ever wanted something more disposable. Great post x

    bumblingalong.co.uk

  5. This is interesting! I am eliminating most single use items from our home. I’ve been curious how to be more ecofriendly with my monthly needs without using a cup.

    1. Thats great! I know cups aren’t for everyone so I think that whilst this isn’t zero-waste, it’s definitely a much better option than the traditional plastic-filled period products.

  6. It’s quite scary to think about how many chemicals are in sanitary products. I don’t have periods at the moment, due to the contraceptive pill I’m on and haven’t had them for years so thankfully this isn’t something I have to worry about right now! But if I ever do have them again, I’ll definitely be keeping this in mind! x

  7. I’ve never tried this brand but I immediately switched to organic and all natural tampons when I found out some brands put chlorine in their products?? Like, how??

    I’ll have to check this company out, thanks!

Let me know what you think!