Conventional vs Organic Tampons & Pads

Your overall health and well-being is affected by many things, not just what you eat. The thoughts you think, the city you live in, your lotions and potions and of course, what you put IN your body. Some of these things are choices and fortunately under our control and some are not.

This post may very well surprise and shock you about something that you wear VERY close to your body and sometimes, inside your body. This is something you can control.

You might be thinking that those tampons and pads you use on a monthly basis created by the likes of large corporations are safe for mama earth and your lady parts, but I’m hear to share some information that perhaps might make you think otherwise.

Unfortunately, some of these big corporations don’t take into consideration the health of the planet or YOUR body – shame on them. Could it be that your constant UTI’s, yeast infections, endometriosis or hormonal issues be in part due to the products you use when your monthly friend visits? Something to consider my joyous friends.

In this video, I share one of my fave brands of organic tampons and pads:

So here’s the deal, the facts:

  • Every year, BILLIONS of plastic laden pads and liners are disposed of, often ending up in landfill sites and even the oceans of our world.
  • Most of these pads are made from over 90% crude oil plastic which goes on to pollute global environments forever.
  • Most tampons and pads are bleached with chlorine which leads to a toxic byproduct called dioxin, which is linked to cancer as it’s a known carcinogen and endometriosis.
  • You often see “Elemental chlorine-free bleaching” on a label (also referred to as chlorine-free). This bleaching process is NOT free of chlorine at all but means that it is not a chlorine gas bleaching process! This does not exclude the use of other types of chlorine in the bleaching process. It is easy to be confused when manufacturers play with language in order to confuse you. Grrrrr!
  • Recycled cotton any better? Nope. Again… tricky marketing at play. Recycled still cannot be chlorine or pesticide free because there’s no way to ensure that the cotton products recycled were clean.
  • Pesticide-residue getting into your lady parts? 26% of the world’s pesticide is sprayed on cotton. These pesticides have been shown to affect the health of wildlife and humans in a devastating way from infertility, hormonal imbalance, even cancer. In third world countries, up to 70% of farm workers are children aged 5-15 and many involved in spraying these potentially cancer-causing chemicals onto the cotton that your tampons are made from. This is just so wrong because these children are being exposed at such a young age.
  • If the cord of your tampon has been dyed, then it’s a possible source of toxic heavy metals, thanks to azo dyes.

This is why I love the brand featured in my vid:

Natracare products are made from certified organic and natural, plant-derived materials that are chemical and additive free, and biodegradable, containing only organic and natural ingredients sourced from sound ecologically managed producers and certified free from animal testing.

All products are totally-chlorine free and women can be reassured by the fact that Natracare does not contain any synthetic materials or any chemical additives such as surfactants, fragrances, dyes, or lubricants. Choosing only fully certified organic cotton removes the risk of direct exposure to residues from chemical pesticides, fertilisers, defoliants and fungicides commonly used on conventionally grown cotton.

I asked fellow Plant-Based Coach and Expert Candice Schreiber for her take:

“Organic cotton is the way to go for pads and tampons. I put clean, pesticide free, organic food in my body, why not in my hoo hoo? Also the organic cotton products don’t contain  polyester, dyes, fragrances,  or other synthetic ingredients found in regular sanitary products. Also organic cotton is better for mama earth!”

Please share this post with your friends and family. Be informed and take care of your joyous beautiful body as naturally as possible!

Joyous Nutritionista

Joy McCarthy

Joy McCarthy is the vibrant Holistic Nutritionist behind Joyous Health. Author of JOYOUS HEALTH: Eat & Live Well without Dieting, professional speaker, nutrition expert on Global’s Morning Show, Faculty Member at Institute of Holistic Nutrition and co-creator of Eat Well Feel Well. Read more...


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  • Thanks for sharing all of your holistic knowledge with us.

    I switch over to DivaCup and love it. No pads or tampons to waste. Saving some money along the way.

  • Glad to hear it Cindy! I’m not a fan of silicon, but I know it works for many women.

  • I’m also a DivaCup user and will never go back to pads & tampons.

  • I’m a huge supporter of the diva cup too! And I use Luna pads panty liners (washable pads) as a back up, because I can never be too safe! No waste and a huge money saver!

  • This is probably the last thing I need to do to be completely chemical free in my personal care. I also use the Diva Cup, but need to switch from using conventional panty-liners to going organic.

    Are their similar risks associated with silicon products?

    Thanks so much for your amazing suggestion! I had no idea this company existed. Will keep my eye out for them.

  • i use natura care and feel better knowing i’m not addind additional toxions in my body when i call my internal cleaning

  • Ah you have provided here very useful information about Conventional vs Organic Tampons & Pads because you talked here about manufacturing of plastic laden pads and liners are being made with crude oil which is not good for human being you also discussed about Elemental chlorine-free bleaching ,Recycled cotton etc so you have done a great work so that is why you deserved thanks and I hope you must carry on this kind of work

  • Great post Joy! I also use the Diva Cup and would like to know your concerns about using silicone; are there any risks? Thanks!

  • It never occurred to me that cotton could be so dangerous. Should I be concerned about my cotton underwear too?

  • I see a difference with the organic change in my cramps .less bleeding. Barely can feel it on me.100% cotton pads is the way to go.

  • i switched to the diva cup but not a fan of how easy it can be to dirty it.. as well as my recurrent yeast infection for 2 years.. now that i have a hold on it and threw the diva cup away since the company suggest you buy a new one every time you may get a yeast infection.. like really money grab.. my question is .. can organic tampons prevent yeast infections ? rather then the grocery store crap.. i already use organic liners and wow do they ever breath nice

    • Hi Alyssa,

      I wouldn’t say they can prevent yeast infections, but if you find yourself buying a new DivaCup every month, they might be more economical until you’re able to resolve the yeast infections.

      Kate – Joyous Health Team

    • Try getting tested for candida, and talk to a naturopathic doctor about it. There’s lots of changes you could maybe make, like no soap “down there” or shampoo running down, careful with your detergents, cotton underwear, no more tampons, cut down on sugars and for me, manuka honey every day 3x a day on an empty stomach really changed me. Also a tbs of raw apple cider vinegar with the honey, and spraying diluted acv up there during a yeast infection really helps clear it quicker. I used that instead of soap during my shower. I’m seeing a naturopathic doctor now to also see if there’s more I should do, but I feel really good. I’m on a supplement regimine so we’ll see where that goes. THEN after you make lifestyle changes I would look more into your options for your period, i’m using blossom cup right now, and for the first time in forever I don’t have pain! yay! Try pads for now, they’ll irritate your vagina less!

      • SO glad to hear you have found something that works for you, Jan! Thanks for sharing :)
        Heather- Joyous Health Team

  • I’m making the switch over to organic products because I strive for organic in every other aspect so it surely makes sense.
    My main concern is whether or not there is validity that the 100% cotton tampons are safe and do not cause TSS risk! I really do prefer tampons, but I have done pads this period since I read (admittedly, WAY too much crap) about TSS happening even in cases where it seemingly should not have.
    There was a study done by microbiologist Dr. Tierno & Dr. Hanna that showed cotton as quite safe, but it stands alone, and no other studies validate it…I hope that we ladies get some validation very soon! It’s such a big thing that every single woman encounters every month, I wish we had more assurance.

    • Hi Chelsea! Kudos to your for getting informed and striving for an organic lifestyle :) Because TSS is caused by bacteria, I think it’s super important to practice proper hygiene and choose the best options that are currently available. Organic Cotton will be a much better option compared to conventional. You may want to look into the diva cup as an option or stick with pads if that’s what you’re most comfortable with. Either way, there needs to be additional research!
      All the best :)
      Heather- Joyous Health team

  • Great article guys but I would like to add on something. I have seen the two of both worlds. I have used the conventional pads and also organic pads. Of the two types of pads I would easily settle for organic pads and here are the reasons why. Organic pads are free of any forms of side effects. You don’t get to vomit, no fevers, and no diarrhea. Organic pads are also made of 100% pure cotton. Cotton is eco friendly and also highly biodegradable. Finally because cotton is pure white there is no need for bleachers such as chlorine that are used in rayon and wood fluff from which conventional tampons are made.