Sanitary products have evolved from strictly pads and tampons to include period underwear and menstrual cups.
These new additions to the scene are loved for freeing people with periods from bulky pads and the sometimes uncomfortable task of inserting a tampon.
But perhaps most of all, period underwear and menstrual cups are lauded for being environmentally friendly because they reduce waste and are manufactured with friendly materials.
However, there are cons to those alternative options, like needing to double up with a pad after accidentally leaking through. In addition, the logistics of cleaning the underwear can be frustrating during busy work weeks and packed weekends - and it's unlikely you'll have a period undie on hand during surprise bleeds.
Even though they're minor issues, it doesn't hurt to have a pad on hand, but of course, the environmental impact of those 'safety nets' can play on the conscious.
According to Cleanup.org.au, in one lifetime, a menstruator uses between "5,000 and 15,000 pads and tampons," with most ending up in the landfill.
The wrapping surrounding the pad also causes a massive strain on our environment.
The organisation reports that 90% of conventional pads containing plastic in the backing, adhesive strops, and packaging take 300 to 500 years to decompose.
This is when biodegradable pads enter the conversation.
They aren't as good for the environment as re-wearable products, but they at least break down and don't take five lifetimes to deteriorate.
In Australia, we have a few brands that offer biodegradable pads, and we break down how each brand works.
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