My period is quite regular. Like clockwork it comes end of the month and stays for 6 days. The first day is like a deluge, and from there, the flow recedes until it’s splotchy and finally, done.
Until this past year, my routine always included a mix of tampons and pads, the latter reserved only for nights, the former for day time. Call it superstition, or whatever, but yes, I have a thing about sleeping with something inserted in my vag all night. I like to let my yoni breathe, or free flow so to speak, hence the tag team effort between tampons and pads, day and night.
My routine was about to be usurped though, because for a while I’d been thinking more and more about period waste–the literal kind. By my own calculations, I was going through about 12 tampons and 6 pads every month. In a year, that’s 144 tampons and 72 pads, not including all the plastic wrapping these come in. All in all, that’s a lot of straight-to-bin kind of garbage that could *easily* be avoided. I say *easily* cautiously, because the truth is, in the beginning I was skeptical. I didn’t know if all these alternatives that were coming out on shelves and that I was hearing about could really do the trick. Mainly, I was worried if they would actually work. And, if so, would they even fit into my kind of lifestyle? I wasn’t after some bulky, hand wash only diapers. I wanted something as discreet as a tampon, and as secure as an overnight maxi pad. The only way to find out, was to try for myself.
So, to that goal, I started first with the diva cup. Almost a year in and it’s now completely replaced tampons from my routine. In the beginning, it was way weird watching my blood pool and dye toilet bowls red, but I quickly got used to it–yes, I even got used to the bloodied fingers-to-sink dance required after draining said cup. Step one: win.
Step two though has been more than a bit delayed. All the options I was seeing out there that could replace the pad were… more pads, just the organic kind. Sure, that might have been a step up from the ones I had been using, but it wasn’t going to get rid of the question of waste. So, I held out and onto my pads in all their various sizes because, truth is, not only did I need one to sleep in, I also needed one for super light flow and overflow. Yes, occasionally just like a tampon my diva cup overflows after a heavy first day (or poor insertion).
Finally, Thinx period panties started aggressively targeting me on Instagram. To them I say, well played! They seemed to come out of nowhere as an answer to my very pad problems. But I was still skeptical, holding out until just recently, when a girlfriend told me she went a whole cycle using only a Thinx thong. A thong! I couldn’t believe it and that’s how I knew I had to splurge and give these undies a go.
Truth is though, I was still beyond skeptical when I got my period panties in the mail a couple weeks later. Holding up the thong between my fingers, I did wonder if it could really hold all that blood in? Especially the day one kind? Turns out, I was hopeful, but not silly. Which is why I bought the thong… and the bootie shorts. We all live with a haunting memory or two (or more) of waking up to bloodied sheets. I’m too old to scrub sheets anymore. So, my very sensible goal was to use the thong during the day and the booty shorts at night.
Alas, when my flow finally came, I was properly armed with my Thinx undies but there was a slight problem: Day One I was caught at a tropical beach, bathing in a teeny tiny bikini. Thinx undies–thong or not– were definitely not going to cut it. So, I reverted to my trusted diva cup by day, and booty period undies by night.
Let me just say, that first night in my booty undies was sleepless. I was tossing and turning constantly, worrying about leaking blood all over the white hotel sheets. That said, when I awoke in the morning there was not a drop or smear in sight. I was surprised, mostly because it was day one of flow and I had also been sleeping on my back, which to me always means something’s going to spill out the other end. But that night? Nothing. Magically, as promised it all stayed within the undies.
I followed this routine for the next three days: diva cup by day, Thinx booty undies by night. Every morning I would hand wash the undies and leave them hanging to dry. There was something about that routine that even made me feel more connected to my flow, like I was in charge of it, or confronting it fully rather than just ditching and forgetting it all with a simple toss in the bin of a tampon or pad. I don’t know if that’s part of the advertised benefits of going green on your period, but there, this was part of my experience.
It wasn’t until day 3 though that I was bold enough to go with just the thong. I was still bleeding, –not as much as before, sure, but enough to need some proper absorption. For the next few days I alternated the thong and bootie shorts, day and night. Not once did I ever have a leak. And, as if in added bonus to it all, the undies were damn comfortable. Now I find myself gravitating towards them even when I’m not bleeding.
In the end, I think I should be paid by Thinx because I’m a definite convert and will be telling all my girlfriends about it. You need a pair of these undies. Fact is, they’re a great fucking product. Unfortunately, I’m not being paid by them. So I don’t really care if you do or don’t switch over. What I can say for myself though is that, together with the diva cup these period undies have helped me after all these years dreaming about it, finally get rid of a lot of waste (pun intended). Step two: win.