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I road-tested a pair of period knickers – here’s how I got on 

They are more sustainable than tampons or sanitary towels and less arduous than a moon cup. But are period pants the solution for the environmentally-conscious menstruator? 

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Environmental issues were an important motivation for Linnea Dunne trying out the Nixx products. Photo: Fran Veale.

Environmental issues were an important motivation for Linnea Dunne trying out the Nixx products. Photo: Fran Veale.

Nixx founder Ellie Loftus

Nixx founder Ellie Loftus

Nixx specialises in first period boxes, teen and adult period underwear, post-natal and bladder leak reusable panties

Nixx specialises in first period boxes, teen and adult period underwear, post-natal and bladder leak reusable panties

The cost of a pair of Nixx period pants ranges from €24.95 to €27.95

The cost of a pair of Nixx period pants ranges from €24.95 to €27.95

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Environmental issues were an important motivation for Linnea Dunne trying out the Nixx products. Photo: Fran Veale.

I have a confession to make. I use mainstream disposable period products. I am an almost 40-year-old middle-class woman, I have read and written extensively about women’s health and periods, and yet I’m still using pads and tampons that are bad for the environment and, arguably, bad for me. The intention to change has been there since before I first became a mother almost nine years ago. I bought a menstrual cup when they first came out but never quite managed to get along with it.

When my period returned heavier than ever, after I stopped breastfeeding my youngest son, I tried but failed to find organic, disposable tampons able for a very heavy day-one flow and which wouldn’t break the bank. When I Googled reusable pads I just couldn’t get past the girly, floral or aggressively patterned fabrics.

If that makes me sound shallow, so be it. I just couldn’t stand the look of the designs on a computer screen on a good day, let alone the thought of them between my legs after a week of intense PMS. I eventually decided that period pants would be my route to environmentally-friendly menstruation, but somewhere between navigating the sizing of a pricey enough garment online and gasping at the prohibitive cost of US customs and complications of Brexit, I gave up.


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