Sanitary products and baby wipes are items that are supposed to offer safety and comfort. We trust into what we’re buying due to the nurturing role they play in health and hygiene. But when was the last time you checked the ingredients of these items? You may be surprised at the long lists of chemicals, that are potentially toxic, contained within wipes designed for your little ones.
Then there are feminine hygiene products… Take a look at the packaging of your usual brand. Can you see an ingredients list? It’s unlikely! In fact, the materials used to make pads and tampons has probably never crossed your mind, when in fact they could be harming your health!
TSS (Toxic Shock Syndrome) is when bacteria gets into the body, releasing harmful toxins. The reason that tampons are often associated with TSS is because they can become a breeding ground for these harmful bacteria. Therefore, it’s always important to use the correct absorbance rating for your flow and change your tampon regularly, making sure to not leave one overnight, to reduce the likelihood of TSS.
However, the materials used in pads and tampons are also a cause for concern. Following are just some of the harmful chemicals and ingredients found in these sanitary products:
Sores and redness can often be mistaken for diaper rashes, when in fact baby wipes could be to blame. Even wipes that are labelled as ‘hypoallergenic’ could pose potential harm. These ingredients are just a few that are best avoided:
Sanitary pads and tampons aren’t required to list ingredients on packaging due to them being seen as ‘medical devices’. In fact, the reason many products contain harmful ingredients is due to the FDA stance on those chemicals. However, just because an ingredient is FDA approved it does not always mean that it isn’t harmful for our health and bodies. It often means that the research is not significant enough to ban certain chemicals.
Fortunately, there is a company who cares. Natracare was founded in 1989 by Susie Hewson, who saw a documentary that highlighted some of the concerns surrounding female hygiene products. Her outrage and concern at the current materials used in such important products sparked her to create her own alternative toxin-free range. The mission for Natracare was to create products without bleach, pesticides and plastics, and that’s exactly what they’ve done. Instead, they source 100% organic cotton (so no pesticides have been sprayed on these crops) and other plant-based alternatives. Natracare sell a range of feminine hygiene products, from sanitary pads to tampons and liners, as well as stocking 3 different types of wipes, including baby wipes.
Their tampons contain 100% organic cotton with no other ingredients, and the list for a typical pad they sell looks like this: ‘Pad: Certified organic cotton, ecologically-certified cellulose pulp, corn starch, non-toxic glue. Wrapper: Compostable cellulose, compostable starch film.’ Transparency is key, and it’s reassuring to see that the materials used here are completely safe and won’t harm our bodies. It’s a similar story for the baby wipes too, made from 100% organic cotton infused with essential oils and natural plant extracts. It’s reassuring to see these wipes pass strict standards from others who are also incredibly health conscious.
As well as sourcing high quality, toxin-free ingredients for their products, Natracare also makes sure to look after the environment. Their products are 100% biodegradable and compostable, meaning less landfill waste! This is particularly important as currently every year 45 billion feminine hygiene products are either incinerated, releasing harmful gases, or sent to landfills.
On top of everything else, Natracare has also been given the Made Safe seal of approval. Meaning that their products have been deemed to be free-from many chemicals and toxins that can be found in many other commonly used products. The award means products have passed scientific testing in order to reassure consumers that products are safe to use. For more information about the Made Safe certification, take a look at this previous blog article.
The truth about many feminine hygiene products and baby wipes is a reminder to always question products that you use on your skin. Skin is highly absorbent and is a direct route for chemicals to get into the bloodstream, so never settle for anything less than perfect when it comes to health. There are companies out there that care and make products to better your health and the environment, such as Natracare. Therefore it’s important to support these companies that support you!
Don’t forget to spread this important message to others by sharing this article.