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Back in 2015, I decided to make the switch from disposable sanitary items to reusable ones. My main reason for switching was to reduce my bathroom waste. My second motive was to save money.
A recent survey has revealed that British women spend £18,000 on their periods in a lifetime.
2,134 women aged between 18-45 took part in this poll.
The Survey Results
Here’s a brief overview of the results…
- 77% of the women stated that their period lasted five days or more
- 24% use only tampons
- 31% use only sanitary towels
- 39% use both tampons and sanitary towels
- 6% use a menstrual cup
Further to that 91% of the women stated that they needed to buy pain relief on a regular basis.
Cost of Periods
Following this, the women were asked to think about the amount they spend every month on their period. Here are those results…
- Period Products (Pads, tampons, pantyliners) – £13
- Underwear (Due to spillages) – £8
- Pain Relief – £4.50
- Comfort Foods (Chocolate, Sweets, Crisps) – £8.50
- Other Items (Toiletries, magazines, DVD’s etc) – £7
This makes the estimated annual cost of a period £492. The average women menstruate 450 times in her lifetime. So looking at the results from this study that would make the total cost of a period during a women’s lifetime £18,450.
I do feel that this poll is a little far fetched. I don’t spend £7 a month on DVD’s or magazines because of my period. I also don’t have to buy new underwear every month. The rest is pretty accurate I’d say.
Cost of My Period Each Month Before Reusables
To follow up on the survey results I have estimated my monthly costs for my period. I’ve included the cost before I made the switch to reusables and the cost afterwards.
I haven’t included additional costs like pain relief of comfort food. Those will still be the same. Well until I find a great natural alternative to pain medication that is. Although with the amount of pain I suffer from each month I’m not holding my breath.
- Always Ultra Normal Pads = £2.00 for 14 x 2 £4.00 per month
- Always Ultra Night Pads = £2.00 for 10
- Pantyliners = £1.00 for 20
Total £7.00 per month
Cost of Period Yearly Before Reusables – £7 x 12 months = £84
Cost of Period Each Month with Reusables
Zero! This year I haven’t spent a penny on period products.
Now I know what you are thinking ‘but you had to buy the reusable pads in the first place which must have cost you money?’ That is correct but I bought them the year before last. I spent approximately £45 on reusable pads in total.
So if we look at my total amount for the year £84, within 6 months those pads starting saving me money. I’d say it’s definitely worth the initial investment. It’s not long before you start to see the benefits.
I know that £84 a year might not seem like much to some but for us that pays for one of our children’s swimming lessons for a term. It all adds up!
Still not convinced! Check out my
Obviously, using reusable pads isn’t for everyone. I’m sure there are plenty of people out there reading this and cringing at the mere thought of it. But let me ask you one question. How do you think women managed their periods before the invention or disposable pads?
A Few Facts for You…
- Disposable pads and tampons became readily available to women during the first half of the 20th century.
- It takes hundreds of years for a disposable pad or tampon to biodegrade.
- Tampons are used by over 100 million women worldwide.
- Disposable sanitary products are a multi-billion dollar industry.
Have I convinced you to make the switch yet?
Image Credit: Giulia Bertelli