Thrifty Periods & Zero Waste Week

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I’ll start of this post by saying this is a post about periods, if words like blood and vagina freak you out you then might I suggest you read something else. If however you would like to learn how you can save money on your period every month while also reducing your household waste then read on.

Zero Waste Week

I was inspired to write this post because of the theme for this years Zero Waste Week which is ‘Reuse’. I started to think about products that we use in the house and what we could start reusing instead of throwing away. That is when I came across the Earthwise Girls website and their reusable sanitary pads. This seemed like a perfect place to start on my reuse journey.

Saving Money

I have worked out how much I could save each year by switching to reusable pads rather than disposables. On average I spend about £15 a month on my period for disposable sanitary items. Many people would probably spend less than this but I have particularly heavy periods so find myself having to stock up on products. In one year I spend a whooping £180 on my period and that isn’t including the price of the painkillers that I also have to buy each month.

Reusable Sanitary Pads

On the Earthwise Girls website an Eco Femme full cycle kit costs £39.95. This kit contains the following products: 2 panty liners, 2 day pads, 2 day pad plus pads, 1 night pad, 1 canvas  travel pouch.

earthwise girls

For one of my periods I have estimated that I use around 30 disposable pads for a 5 day cycle. That’s 6 pads per day. So I would need to purchase 30 reusable pads to cover my period. So if I bought the above full cycle kit I would have 5 pads at £39.95 (I’m forgetting the panty liners at the moment). On the site you can then purchase individual pads to top up your kit. You can buy 3 medium pads for £10.50. So say I bought 4 of these packs that’s £42.00. We are now up to 17 pads at a cost of £81.95. Now say I bought the small 3 packs at £9.75 per pack. I’d also need to buy 4 of these at a total cost of £39.

That brings the total cost of switching to reusable pads to £120.95. I know this might seem like a huge outlay to start with but the bigger picture here is that I would spend more than that per year on my period every year.

Total Savings Over 5 Years

Here’s a little calculation for you to really show the savings…

Cost of period using disposables over 5 years = £900

Cost of period using reusables over 5 years = £ 120.95

That’s a total saving over 5 years of = £779.05

This is of course providing that the reusable pads last for 5 years which I’m guessing they would. I’m really excited about trialing these as I hate the amount of waste that comes with having your period and I love the idea of saving even more money.

Now the next question is do the reusable pads actually work! My review post will follow shortly.

Reusable Sanitary Pads

Thrifty Thursday

Thrifty ThursdayThrifty Thursday is a weekly linky and a place to share your thrifty posts. It doesn’t matter if they are old or new and can be about anything to do with saving money and being thrifty. Whether it be a post on cutting back on your food shop or your latest thrifty find link it up, I’d love to see it.

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11 thoughts on “Thrifty Periods & Zero Waste Week”

  1. I can’t believe I’m EXCITED about this post LOL! I too am a heavy gal, so I’m going to be eager to see what works for you.

    The only thing for me at nighttime for the first couple of nights is a huge nappy thing from ‘Honour your flow’. However, I find the fabrics don’t come clean very well.

    The first pads I ever bought were from Ella’s house (made from hemp) and they were fab, but they’ve stopped making them – which I’m so sad about as I’ve never found anything so brilliant.

    I saw some the other day with microfiber in them which is super absorbent, BUT I think manmade fabrics don’t tend to suit me. I won’t go into details, but ya know, it develops a certain whiff which, yeah, that’s all …

    Eagerly awaiting your follow up post! And yes, the money side is a no brainer – plus we use about 17,000 sanitary items in our lifetime, so that’s a huge amount of waste you’re diverting from landfill (or a beach somewhere).

    1. I was concerned about using them at night time but I’ll have to look into one of those ‘huge nappy things’ that might be the answer for that. Have you found any that do clean well?
      I desperately want them to work as well as the disposable ones but I guess will just have to wait and see.

    1. I’d say give them a go Chantelle. I really hoping that I get on with them. I know what you mean about the pretty prints, they are very cool 🙂

    1. I have seen lots of tutorials on making your own on Pinterest. If I was better at sewing I’d give it a go Vicky. I bet you’d be able to make some lovely ones!

  2. Hi Gina,

    Its an interesting article. Have you included laundry costs in your calculations, and will you find the time?

    All the best,


    1. Good question! As they are only small they will just go into my normal coloured wash so I won’t be doing any more washing than I already am. Most of the pads are machine washable at up to 60 degrees and then you line dry them, which of course is free 🙂

  3. You have such an informative and inspiring post! If I may add…you might want to consider the reusable menstrual cup too if you really want to go frugal. It’s reusable for months or up to one year and it lasts up to 12 hours before you have to empty and clean it.

I'd love to know what you think...

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