Having learned from experience with disposable sanitary products, you may be asking yourself whether reusable pads are hygienic. Are they full of bacteria? Will they cause an infection? Are they safe for health?
We have good news for you. With proper use, reusable sanitary pads and panty liners are as hygienic and safe as disposables, if not more so… Read on to find out how this is possible.
Disposable sanitary pads – hygienic by name only
Marketing specialists have made great efforts to ensure that disposable pads, panty liners, and tampons are perceived as safe for health. Not without reason, they are white (chlorine-bleached!), sold in separate plastic packaging, and in every possible message presented as a synonym for cleanliness and hygiene during menstruation.
We like to think that disposable pads and tampons are sterile, after all, we place them in the most intimate areas of the body. However, in reality, this is not true. Plastic packaging and colors associated with cleanliness are only a cover for products that are not only made on ordinary, usually Chinese factory tape (like many other goods destined for supermarket shelves around the world) but also contain many harmful substances (dioxins, pesticides, glyphosate).
Are the reusable pads hygienic?
I often get asked this question. Doubts take different forms:
- Do the pads wash well?
- Are they hygienic?
- Does bacteria multiply in the structure of the material?
- Does bacteria multiply in the structure of the material?
- Is it necessary to use a washing disinfectant?
- Will the sanitary pads start to smell badly with time?
- Do they cause infections?
and the most common
- Bleeeee, this is unhygienic!
I understand the term hygienic as clean and safe for health. In the case of reusable sanitary pads and panty liners, this means that after every wash, the sanitary pads will be free of residual blood (and other secretions) from the outside and inside structures and will not create an environment for bacteria and fungi to grow during use.
I would never use a reusable pad myself in my life if I would have at least a shadow of suspicion that it may support or promote the growth of microorganisms. Every woman who has ever had an intrusive intimate infection knows what I am talking about.
There are several factors to consider to make sure that the pads are clean before each use and do not pose a health hazard.
1. The materials they are made of
There are several types of materials from which reusable pads and hygienic pads are made. Some are better suited for this than others.
What seems healthy and natural is not always so. Hygenic pads made of natural materials – cotton or linen – break down and stiffen after some time of use, and tightly compacted fibers are difficult to keep clean and dry very slowly. In practice, this means that after some time, especially thicker pads are left with residual blood and secretions that can easily become a nutrient for microorganisms. For this reason, natural fiber pads should be changed quite often, disinfectants should be used for washing and replaced more often than others.
The second option is sanitary pads and panty liners made of synthetic materials such as microfleece, bamboo, or Coolmax. Such sanitary pads are easier to keep clean – they are better to clean and dry faster. Unfortunately, they also have their disadvantages.
Although, theoretically, pads made of synthetic materials can be worn for longer, in practice, many women complain about the unpleasant sensations associated with skin contact with these materials (sweating, burns), especially if the outer layer is made of PUL. The PUL membrane intensifies this effect, as it is very often applied on low quality polyester fabrics, which, although they look nice because they are colored, they limit the free flow of air, causing burns and scalds which promotes the development of microorganisms in intimate areas.
The third option is a new generation of reusable pads made of synthetic barrier materials – Loffme. They combine the advantages of natural pads (they are pleasant to the touch, they do not cause a burn, they do not increase sweating) and synthetic pads (they are easy to wash and they dry quickly).
The material from which Loffme pads are made has antibacterial properties. Its structures prevent the multiplication of bacteria and fungi inside the sanitary pads so they are 100% safe for health. Loffme sanitary pads will not start to smell bad and will never be a source of infection or allergic reaction. The material has high absorptivity and a vapor-permeable membrane, that is wicking away moisture. Loffme sanitary pads are also very thin and dry in just 1-2 hours.
2. Following the rules of washing and drying
Of course, to make sure that the pads are clean and safe before each use, the manufacturer’s washing and drying rules must be followed. Care instructions can be found on the packaging or label and on the manufacturer’s website.
For some sanitary pads, it is advisable to soak them before washing and use disinfectants. Due to their special properties, this is not recommended for Loffme sanitary pads and panty liners.
To ensure that they are clean before each use and are safe for health and serve for a long time, always follow the rules for washing and drying. How to wash Loffme sanitary towels?
- Rinse the blood with cold water.
- Do not soak.
- If you need to store your pads before washing in the washing machine, place them in a laundry bag or basket with the rest of the laundry. You can fold them in envelopes if you want their inner side to remain hidden from the rest of the household.
- Wash by hand in natural soap or in a washing machine with regular washing powder at 30-60°C (86-193 Fharenhite). Do not use fabric softeners or conditioners (they clog pores and reduce the absorbency of the fabric).
- Hang it on the dryer or a moderately hot radiator.
- Once a month, soak the pads in hot water or water with vinegar to restore the fibers to their original structure and properties.
Post Scriptum: There is one more thing you should keep in mind when evaluating the safety of not only reusable sanitary pads and panty liners but also all other hygiene products. Apply the principle of limited trust. The fact that it says on an Asian portal that a sanitary pad is made of organic cotton, dyed with a safe paint, and not tested on animals doesn’t really … mean anything. Before you buy, check if the product and its manufacturer are trustworthy. If something costs $0.79 the value is the same…