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April 03, 2020 5 min read

"INFO: The team previously at hannahpad Canada launched their own new brand, illum! These blog posts have been written when we used to run hannahpad Canada. All information is still relevant and everything is the same! We simply changed the brand that we offer. :slightly_smiling_face: "


If you’ve ever considered making the switch to reusable cloth pads, you’ve probably wondered at some point or another if they’re really worth the investment. It’s true that with the growing mass production of disposable pads and tampons in the last few decades that switching to reusable cloth pads definitely goes against the grain of what we’re used to. Some critics have even claimed that reusable cloth pads are just a passing environmental trend.

Let’s set the record straight.

Reusable cloth pads are definitely here to stay and are well worth the investment! When we talk about investment here, it’s not just about the money you will save (although that’s a part of it). It’s also about how this lifestyle change will impact your health and the environment in a positive way.

And now’s a better time than any to try out reusable cloth pads for the first time! With COVID-19 impacting everyone’s day-to-day life around the world, some of us are restricted to our homes in an effort to help flatten the curve. Whether you want to test out a single pad or go all in with a reusable pad set, with more time on your hands you can easily integrate these sustainable period products into your lifestyle without having to leave the comfort and security of your home.

Without further ado, let’s dive into exploring whether or not reusable cloth pads are worth the investment.

How Will Switching to Cloth Pads Save Me Money?

The Average Cost of Disposable Menstrual Products

Did you know that on average, women use around 16,000 disposable pads and tampons in their lifetime? On average, we spend roughly $0.20 for every individual pad or tampon we’re using. Though this may look like a small amount, it will accumulate over the years.

Since the average person will menstruate for about 35 years, just imagine how much the costs of disposable pads and tampons will add up to! Are you ready for it? It’s a grand total of $3,200! Can you believe it?

It’s important to keep in mind that this is the average cost. Our calculations don’t take inflation and personal needs or preferences into consideration. The cost of these products can vary from period brand to period brand, costing you more than what we’ve predicted.

The Average Cost of Reusable Cloth Pads

Of course, the major advantage of reusable cloth pads is, well, their reusability. When you make the switch to sustain period products, you’re cutting out the recurring cost of buying disposable pads and tampons on a monthly basis. And this isn’t a short term deal—with proper care, reusable cloth pads can be by your side for 4 to 6 years. Some users have even experienced a longer lifespan of their reusable cloth pads.

Now for the math.

Let’s use our illum Light Flow Kit as an example, which costs around $103 for 8 reusable cloth pads. If your illum cloth pad kit lasts you the minimum life expectancy of 4 years—and is your sole menstruation expense during this time—how much will this amount to over the course of the average 35-year menstruation period?

Drumroll, please!

That’s only roughly $910! That means you are saving at least $2,200. So while you may think that purchasing reusable cloth pads seems expensive up front, making the switch will save you significantly more money in the long run.

But wait—the savings don’t end here. There are even more intangible benefits connected to your health to take advantage of when you invest in reusable cloth pads!

How Will Switching to Reusable Cloth Pads Benefit My Health?

So we’ve already talked about how switching to reusable cloth pads is good for your wallet. Now we will go into another important aspect of this investment: your health.

On top of being absolutely essential for self-care, the health benefits of using reusable cloth pads can also extend into monetary savings if you are able to avoid health problems like rashes, infections, and other health concerns, plus the cost of their treatment.

So, do reusable menstrual pads and pantyliners help to avoid these aforementioned health problems? The short answer is yes. And here’s why.

The Perks of Breathability

One thing that infection-causing bacteria loves is moisture. As most disposable sanitary pads are made with synthetic materials, this reduces their breathability and causes a buildup of moisture that will increase your risk of infection. Cotton pads have elevated breathability that not only provides a more comfortable experience during your period but also reduces the risk of infection by not giving bacteria a damp environment where they can thrive.

Not Invasive, Not Abrasive

Tampons and menstrual cups share one commonality: they’re both invasive and (though in different degrees), they’re both abrasive as well. Invasive and abrasive menstrual products can do a world of harm. They can cause tiny scratches on the walls of the vagina that increases the risk of infection in the affected parts.

Reusable cloth pads sit comfortably outside of this sensitive area. And if you’re somebody who opted for tampons or menstrual cups for their security, you’ll be happy to know that reusable cloth pads are also secure, snug, and leak-proof because of their unique design. Our pads clip firmly on your underwear instead of sticking to it, reducing the chances of coming off or causing leaks.

No Toxic Chemicals

With the right reusable organic cotton pads, you can be sure that your vagina isn’t exposed to toxic chemicals that can cause irritations. These toxic chemicals are abundant in disposable menstrual pads and tampons, including some of the following:

  • Chlorine Dioxide
  • Dioxin
  • Bisphenol A (BPA)
  • And more!

Learn more about the chemicals used in the production of disposable menstrual products here.

Close up of a woman holding two hannahpads up

How Does Switching to Reusable Cloth Pads Help the Environment?

Now for the third main reason why reusable cloth pads are a great investment.

On top of you being able to save money and avoid health problems, you will also get to help mother earth. By making the shift to using reusable pads, you will be able to prevent thousands of pads and tampons from potentially ending up in our landfills and oceans. Most of these disposable products have a plastic component in their manufacturing, which can lead to them taking a heart-breaking 500 to 800 years to fully decompose.

So what about old and no longer usable reusable pads? How long do they take to break down and become one with mother nature once again? Just 5 months. That is a significantly lower impact on the environment, decreasing your contribution to humanity’s pollution output.

Ready to Make the Investment?

If you’re now ready to make the pocket-friendly, health-improving, and planet-loving shift to reusable cloth pads, it’s time to determine how many hannahpads you need! Once you’ve figured that out, check out our product catalogue and order your life-changing switch today.

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