November 11, 2021 5 min read

For many people who menstruate, it’s no secret that a good night’s sleep during periods is often incredibly difficult to achieve. Sadly, not getting enough sleep also worsens other period-related symptoms

One solution that will give an instant level of relief is high-quality, breathable, leakproof underwear. These will enable you to snooze in your most comfortable sleeping position without the worry of staining your clothes or sheets! 

In addition to leakproof underwear, there are also many other products you can try for better sleep during your period. 

Let’s take a look at what they all are! 

A woman getting good sleep during period days

The Importance of Quality Sleep During Periods 

According to, women with PMS are at least 50% more likely to experience insomnia before or during their period. This can be linked to progesterone fluctuations. Among other functions, progesterone is a hormone that contributes to feelings of drowsiness. And because progesterone levels drop before the start of one’s period, some may find it hard to sleep during this time. 

Period insomnia can also be linked to altered melatonin levels, affecting a person’s sleep patterns. 

Although period insomnia is a common occurrence due to the factors mentioned above, it is still troublesome. Loss of sleep can result in mood swings, aches, and fatigue affecting productivity at work and impacting overall well-being. 

This is why, for many, getting good sleep during periods needs to be a multi-pronged approach. Long-term regular exercise can help with insomnia in general. Another option to explore is progesterone or melatonin supplementation. You can ask your doctor if these supplements would be a healthy and suitable choice for you. 

And, of course, choosing products for leakproof sleep during your period will help make all the difference. Now you can lie on your stomach, sleep on your side, snuggle a pillow, or assume any comfortable sleeping position to help you get your eight hours in. 

Why Period Leaks Are Most Common at Night 

Period leaks are often more common at night – but have you ever wondered why? Here are some of the possible reasons:

  • The pad/tampon/period panty you’re using is not designed to absorb for eight hours straight.
  • You sleep for more than eight hours and you don’t replace your tampon/pad in between (not only will this cause leaks, but it could also lead to infection).
  • The pad you’re using is too small.
  • The pad you’re using has a weak adhesive. 
  • The pad you’re using has a plastic film on top of the absorbent layers, making it more likely for blood to drip to the back, front, or side. 
  • The pad you’re using gets twisted or crooked as you sleep. 
  • The period panty you’re using twists while you sleep.

Understanding the factors that lead to nighttime leaks will also help you determine what key attributes to look for in leakproof products. 

Closeup of illum’s leak-proof underwear’s patent-pending tunnel design

Comfortable Period Products That Prevent Leaks 

Earlier, we talked about why period products tend to leak more at night. This could happen when using tampons, pads, and period panties. So now, let’s look into product alternatives that are sure to prevent leaks for worry-free sleep during periods. 

1. Correctly Sized Menstrual Cups 

Menstrual cups are the perfect alternative for tampons. These cups are typically made of medical-grade silicone and can be reused for up to 10 years. And unlike tampons, which are associated with Toxic Shock Syndrome (TSS), TSS rarely develops because of menstrual cup usage. 

In fact, there aren’t many TSS cases associated with menstrual cups to date. Often, these are only linked to improper use of the product. The risk is still there, but the probability is significantly decreased. In any case, it is important to buy from a trusted brand and follow the directions of use properly. 

Now that we’ve covered how menstrual cups stack up (no pun intended) against tampons in terms of safety, let’s compare the two with regard to leak protection. 

Instead of absorbing blood, menstrual cups simply collect blood. A menstrual cup that is worn properly forms a seal against the vaginal wall, trapping menstrual fluid until you remove the cup at the recommended interval. This is vastly different from how a tampon works. Hence, a correctly-sized menstrual cup can be worn for a whopping 12 hours – which is good news for anyone who needs to sleep in.  

2. Large-Sized Cotton or Bamboo Reusable Pads 

Earlier, we talked about how disposable pads often have a plastic film on top that can lead to leaks. Most disposable pads can also get deformed or twisted, especially for side sleepers or those who frequently shift from one sleeping position to another. 

The best leakproof alternative for any disposable pad is a high-quality, overnight reusable pad. The following characteristics are essential when looking for the right product:

  • Overnight usage –  A reusable pad that is designed for overnight use can absorb more fluid. It can provide added protection with its large but streamlined shape. 
  • High-quality materials and design – The reusable pad must be made of 100% organic cotton or premium bamboo. This kind of fabric would allow menstrual fluid to be quickly absorbed. A good design will also keep the overnight reusable pad snapped in place even if you need to sleep on your side or shift positions.  
  • Sustainability – When made by a trusted brand, reusable pads resist warping or clumping. If they’re washed properly, these pads can last more than three years with barely any changes to their shape. No disposable pad can come close to such a level of sturdiness. 

3. Leakproof Underwear 

Period panties are generally leak-prone. One of the main reasons behind this is because they are designed to look like regular underwear. In doing so, many manufacturers skimp on absorbent layers to maintain a dainty design. This limits absorbency and can also cause the underwear to leak easily with certain sleeping positions. The ultimate alternative is illum’s leakproof undies. 

Illum’s leakproof undies have a patent-pending tunnel design that allows you to easily use reusable pads with them. The tunnel design minimizes the warping that occurs with disposable pads as it keeps the pad’s wings secure while you catch your Z’s.

In case of leakage from disposable pads with a plastic layer, illum’s leakproof undies also have absorbent layers that are strategically placed. Because these undies feature a boyshorts design, everything stays snug and secure. Plus, you’ll love how these undies are incredibly flattering on every body type!  

Close-up of illum’s leakproof undies worn by a woman

Experience Better Sleep During Period Days With Illum

That wraps up our list of products that can prevent period leaks and thereby help give you better sleep during your period.

With illum’s Good Night Sleep Bundle and period kits, you can start experiencing worry-free and more comfortable sleep during periods knowing that you’re backed by the ultimate leakproof products!

As a company that advocates for women’s health and self-care, our period products at illum are carefully designed and made with choice materials like organic cotton or premium bamboo. Apart from leak-protection, our premium reusable pads and leakproof undies also provide maximum comfort and breathability, helping you to feel fresh as you wake up on period days!  

Ready to feel the illum difference? Explore more in our store today!

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