Hygiene can be a tricky subject in wellness talks. I think especially for women, but that may be simply because I am a woman and sometimes have a difficult time discussing what I think to be quite personal.
Oral hygiene and cleaning hygiene are kind of easy to talk about. Most of the time. Other areas of hygiene? Not so much. Case in point- let’s talk about pooping just for a moment.
However, our health depends on us eliminating waste from our body, so it’s a part of our wellness. But we don’t have to waste the planet to clean up our waste.
In my quest to lower my carbon footprint and reduce my impact on the environment, I found a company called Who Gives a Crap. This company is awesome on many levels. They do ship their product, but they only allow you to order certain quantities so no space in the packaging is wasted. All packaging is paper, no plastic of any kind is used. The toilet paper (and paper towels, they do that, too) is made from 100% recycled paper, so no trees were cut down just to make your bum-wiper. And to top it off, they donate 50% of their profits to building toilets in developing countries for those in need. To quote the company themselves “not too bad for a toilet paper company, eh?”
I have also been working on finding a product which will work better for my underarms than the traditional brand of deodorant. I’ve tried LUSH’s deodorant bar, but that was a crumbly mess. It smelled very nice, but didn’t work the way I hoped. It also gave me a rash at least once while I was trying it.
Right now I am trying a new product (to me at least) called Primal Pit Paste. It comes in a glass jar and uses natural ingredients. As far as I can tell, it works good. I got the lavender scent and every once in a while, I’ll forget I have a scented deodorant. I smell lavender and ask people around me what that smell is before I realize, Oh! It’s ME!
But for me, as a woman, the biggest difference I feel I’ve made this year in greening my hygiene has been switching to washable cloth liners and a reusable cup for my menstrual cycle.
Oh, right, disclaimer- guys, I’m going to be talking about women things. I’m a girl, suck it up.
Not to get graphic about menstrual periods, but to give you some statistics- the average woman uses about 2300 sanitary pads and/or liners. If they use tampons, the average number of tampons over the course of a woman’s life is about 7000. More than cost, which is about $2200 for just feminine hygiene products alone, using this many pads and flushable tampons is very wasteful.
There is a LOT of plastic in feminine hygiene, and if you know me at all, you know this practice had to go.
I can’t believe it took me nearly 25 years to find the Diva Cup. And my accompanying liners. Seriously, I love those things. It’s never been about the cost for me, although I’ve recently learned about this ridiculous “Pink Tax”, which rankles me to no end. I thought using organic cotton tampons was okay, or using Seventh Generation panty liners was the smartest thing I could do.
Now, I have no impact on the environment while experiencing my DFU Day (Chris and I don’t want children so we call the first day of my period “Didn’t Fuck Up” Day). I am still looking for effective natural remedies for PMS and cramps, but I always love an excuse to snuggle back in bed with my kitties and a heating pad.