By: Erika Roberts, Guest-Writer
My mama is an amazing woman, but she never told me about Diva Cups or other reusable products on the market that serve as practical alternatives to disposable tampons and pads.
Bleached cotton feminine hygiene products that wreak havoc on our bodies and on the environment were all I ever knew and used until one day, after years of menstruating, a friend told me about the Diva Cup. As cliche as it might sound, my life has never been the same.
The Diva Cup has revolutionized how I experience my monthly meetings, and I want to be ‘that friend’ who tells you about the Diva Cup, if you haven’t converted already. If you have yet to see the posters spread throughout campus in the women’s and unisex bathrooms, I think you should probably drink more water. These posters are part of a larger campaign being spearheaded by me and two other ladies, Em Hirsch and Savannah Livengood. We hope these simple posters have helped prompt further conversation and investigation into the reusable products that are available for you.
These posters address the major health, economic and environmental incentives to using reusable feminine hygiene products but additionally, I think adopting these products is also a significant and powerful act of rebellion against the perpetuating cycle of consumerism.
In my experience from using reusable products such as the Diva Cup (now being sold in WWC bookstore), it is surprisingly empowering to connect with my cycle in a sustainable manner rather than on the basis of corporate-produced, chemical ridden disposable products balled up in toilet paper destined for the landfill. In fact, an estimated 12 billion pads and 7 billion tampons are disposed of annually in the United States alone! The reusable alternatives to disposables have a far more cheery future, tucked conveniently away in your cupboard, entirely sanitary and ready when you are.
For too long, disposable feminine hygiene products have been the accepted norm due in large part to the ‘hush-hush’ societal approach to menstruation. Transitioning to reusable hygiene products and opening dialogue about how we manage our natural cycles is part of a much larger paradigm shift that further propels us into a more sustainable future.
While making lifestyle changes that directly affect how we interact with our body might seem daunting, I assure you there is a large community of women who currently use and love these products who would be more than happy to help support you in your transition to reusable feminine hygiene products or answer any questions that you might have.