(NEW YORK) — For generations, women were limited when it came to period products.Now, female-led businesses are developing new products for women to reclaim their periods.Periods have been at a forefront this year with menstruation documentary Period. End Of Sentence. winning the 2019 Oscar for Best Short Documentary.”Feminine products have made a lot of progress,” ABC News medical correspondent, Dr. Jennifer Ashton said,” but, in my opinion, not enough. Not only here in the U.S. but also worldwide, we are still not comfortable talking about the basic bodily function of menstruation, and we need to ask ourselves WHY?””I think that women should definitely know about anything they put in their bodies and have as many options as possible” she added.From a reusable tampon applicator to a sponge tampon, these products prove women have had enough of wasteful and unpractical feminine hygiene products.THINX Reusable Tampon ApplicatorPopular period-proof underwear brand, THINX, just launched the very first FDA-cleared reusable tampon applicator.According to the company, re.t.a. (reusable tampon applicator) “provides tampon users with the option to reduce single-use plastic waste that comes from disposable tampon applicators.”The product was made with women in mind using all medical-grade materials.Organic Initiative Cotton TamponsOrganic Initiative, aka Oi, is a New Zealand company that sells 100 percent certified organic cotton feminine hygiene products.Their products are free of synthetics, chemicals sprays, perfumes and dyes.”There is growing awareness everywhere in every market that we need to take care of our bodies and take care of our world” co-founder and CEO Helen Robinson told GMA.
— Organic Initiative (@Oi4me) January 22, 2018
Oi is working hard to make sure all women have the ability to get their hand on their products.”Affordability is key which is why Oi has launched into most Walmart stores and will be in more than 10,000 mass, drug and food stores in the USA alone this year” Robinson said.Walmart accounts for 20 percent of feminine hygiene sales annually, according to Oi, making this a huge stride for the feminine hygiene movement.Femly Cup“If you’re looking for an eco-friendly and wallet friendly feminine care option the Femly Cup is the game-changer that everyone deserves” Femly founder Arion Long told GMA.The cup is washable and reusable and used as a tampon alternative.It can give you protection for up to 12 hours and is meant for any body type.We also can’t leave out that the cup comes in clear, pink and purple.Long says the Femly Cup is “better for the environment and your wallet.”Lunapads are the OG when it comes to washable pads.The company has been helping women with their menstrual cycles since 1993.Lunapads are made with 100 percent cotton flannel and 100 percent cotton fleece and the perfect alternative to disposable pads.There are no harsh chemicals and they come in different sizes to be inclusive to different body types.”All of our products are reusable and built to last, helping you reduce your carbon footprint” the company says. Beppy Pure Sponge TamponsBeppy is a little more nontraditional compared to the feminine hygiene products above.The product is a medical-grade sponge that is used as a string-free tampon.It was made by women and for women with the environment in mind.”Beppy was created to ensure comfort and freedom during your period” Jodie Baker from Beppy told GMA.Beppy is hypoallergenic, breathable and non-toxic.While Beppy is a one-time use product, the company uses no chlorine and limits their waste during production.It is a Class II Medical Device and Health Canada certified.”Many of us have had to learn to advocate for ourselves, and that includes understanding and knowing what goes on and in us” Baker said.What should you use?When it comes to the products you use it is entirely your choice.Thanks to the feminine hygiene industry, there is a long list of product options.The best thing to do is know where the products you use come from and know what you are putting into your own body.Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.