This is it, the post you’ve been waiting for. Okay, maybe not, but I’d like to think so! In case you’re new to the party, I’ve been collecting a few items over the last couple of months to transition from menstrual pads to something less contstant-yuck. Yes, that’s the technical word and I’m sticking to it! And I must say, this is the first time in my entire life that I was actually looking forward to my period, and actually started using the products BEFORE it arrived, COMFORTABLY!
The first pieces of the puzzle was the menstrual cup. This is the catalyst that started it all: I was actually hired by the company to photograph their product and I couldn’t not try it out (AFTER the photoshoots!). This led me down a rabbit hole of discovering that there is a whole world out there of different products than the age-old menstrual pad and tampons. FINALLY! Assuming that even the most well-fitting cup would leak, and still not waiting to wear panty liners, my research led me to period panties. More on that later.
I was able to test out the Pixie Cup, and despite my worries and hatred towards tampons, I was pleasantly surprised at how easy and low-mess this thing was. However, I do believe it went so well because I actually “tried it on” a few times before my period was scheduled to arrive so that I got the hang of putting it in, figuring out where it needed to go to be most comfortable, and confirming it was the correct size. The folding and shoving (gently!) is certainly a new experience, and pouring it out is so satisfying to be able to see it go without having to sit in it for hours. Another bonus: way less odor from the blood since it’s not accumulating in a pad.
Other good to know facts:
Mentrual cups are said to last up to 10 years so this was also a money-saver in addition to helping the environment (not a concern up-front but a huge bonus!), and they are easily cleaned (cup-sized steamer or uv sterilizer are a must-have accessory!). They are also able to stay inside you for UP TO 12 HOURS without the risk of TSS, unlike tampons, and it is truly your flow that runs the show. I was able to last about 6 hours before starting to leak (overflow) on the first two days, and then I just emptied it when I woke up and before bed for the next day. By day 4, I didn’t even need to use it because the period panties did the rest. Just wearing underwear for the majority of period? Now THAT was glorious!
I had heard rumblings of period panties in the past, but never ended up purchasing, so I was very excited to resume my search and test things out. My first stop was KNIXwear as they were top of mind, because that’s the brand that makes my favourite nursing bra, and their leakproof underwear did not disappoint! The same beautiful fabric with a virtually seamless construction (available in a wide variety of nudes, and some even have lace!) made them super comfy to wear, and the gusset was so thin and oh so comfortable. This also makes them great for wearing on hot days where you know you will be a little more sweaty than usual, because you barely tell you are even wearing them! Also great for sporting during your fertile window, for those of us who normally need to wear panty liners (though the thigh-savers work just as well to keep you feelish fresh even though they are not leakproof). These are magical, if I do say so myself. ps: use the discount code sdemontigny10 for $10 off
Which leads me to the next brand: THINX. As someone who is allergic to water, including my own sweat, I was very pleased to see that they had cotton options available. The gussets from this brand are much thicker, still thinner than a regular pad, but also seem to be able to soak up a little more, so they were great for overnight and on days where I knew I wasn’t going to be able to make many bathroom trips that allowed for an underwear change.
Other good to know facts:
Maintenance is super easy! You wash your period panties just like any other delicate undergarment (with the exception of rinsing it first): Wash gentle in cold and lay flat or hang to dry. After spending over a year washing cloth diapers for baby, this came as easy-peasy, but if it is your first time thinking about putting stainable fluids in the washing machine I can understand the fear, so let me reassure you that it truly does wash it out—just don’t put them with white clothing, just in case! I made due with having three pairs because they were combined with the menstrual cup (washed them before bed and layed them out to dry overnight), but I will be adding an extra 2 or 3 to my stash of my favourite styles to make sure that if I decide to pass on the cup for a cycle, I have enough to get me through the first two days before washing it all. And for those of you wondering if you can use period panties postpartum — HELL YES! There are different styles that can accommodate different needs (like c-section mamas), and much more comfortable than lady diapers or mesh undies! Hospital bag must-have for sure!
If you have any questions about my experience, I would love to elaborate further. If you have a specific brand that you love, let me know and I can absolutely add it to the list if I enjoy using it (I always test things out first!). If you feel like a friend would benefit from reading about the options, please do share away!
Disclaimer: I am NOT being compensated for publishing this blog post (all opinions are my own and uncoached), however, in the interest of full-disclosure, I was sent PR samples of the items that are part of the behind-the-scenes of this adventure, at my request. And yes, there are a few affiliate links in the post, but they are to things I was linking to anyway, and figured this way I could make a few extra cents towards the cost of motherhood—it ain’t cheap! Thank you for any support you can offer, even if it is simply sharing the post with others. All photos are copyrighted to Stephanie de Montigny and are not to be used without express written consent. Thank you.