Why we Love Period Underwear
Environmentally friendly, flattering and functional, today’s period pants combine natural fibres with technology to absorb menstrual flow
What are Period Underwear
Period underwear are the convenient, stylish and sustainable alternative to the most commonly-used products for menstrual bleeding, tampons and sanitary pads.
Designed to absorb menstrual blood, period panties have been around since Thinx brought them to the market in 2008. It’s only in the past 4-5 years though that a combination of technology, natural fibres and a growing demand for sustainable solutions in period products has seen period- and leak-proof underwear go mainstream.
Period Pants are Environmentally Friendly
Period pants are kinder to the planet
It can take up to 500 years for disposable menstrual products such as tampons and sanitary pads to break down in landfill. Today’s period underwear is designed to be reusable and machine-washable, with minimal waste and environmental impact compared to the disposable alternatives for hygienically absorbing menstrual blood.
So while it’s true that period underwear is an investment – Modibodi period pants cost from AED 75 to AED 130 next to AED 10 for a box of 16 tampons – they are ultimately cost-effective and an excellent choice if you are concerned about waste.
Explore our range of Modibodi period-proof pant packs for different ages and stages on the Nabta Women’s Health Shop. We have packs for teenagers; packs for pregnancy; vegan packs for women with high vaginal pH; and packs for women experiencing irregular periods.
Period Pants are Stylish!
Stylish and absorbent solutions for menstrual bleeding
Available in all styles and absorbency levels. Period pants look just like normal underwear, but with important extra functionality designed to absorb menstrual flow. Most brands now include a wide selection of styles and sizes, from bikini and boy-short, to G-string, lacy, plain or high-waist briefs.
The level of absorbency varies depending on your needs, where you are in your period and whether it is a light, medium or heavy flow day. You can choose period knickers with a higher level of absorbency for heavier days or moderate-to-light for lighter days. Fuller briefs are ideal for overnight and a comfortable, worry-free sleep.
Some brands also offer period underwear for teen girls. Period pants are ideal for girls to begin wearing during adolescence when they are menstruating or expect to start menstruating. Wearing period pants at school avoids any potential embarrassment of a leak and the bulk and inconvenience of a sanitary pad, or awkwardness associated with wearing a tampon.
How does period underwear work?
And actually, does it really work?
Your knickers need to do a lot of things at once: absorb and pull the blood away, leave you dry, not leak onto your clothes, and feel fresh and hygienic.
Typically, period pants have three layers and depending on the brand you choose the materials used could be a mix of bamboo, cotton, merino wool or synthetic fibres.
The first layer, next to the skin, is a soft knitted layer designed to wick moisture away from the body. The second layer is an absorbent middle layer made to hold onto the liquid. This layer can be designed to hold up to 50 ml (10 teaspoons or 10 tampons) of blood. The average woman loses 2-3 tablespoons, or 30-50 ml of blood over five days. The third, outer layer, is water impermeable to be leak-proof and stop any menstrual blood leaking onto your clothes. More fabric means more absorbency and each layer is breathable and antimicrobial to fight bacteria and odour for hygiene.
How often do you need to change period pants?
Can you wear them all day?
If you are concerned about feeling wet, how often you need to change period underwear and whether you will need extra protection in form of a sanitary pad, Modibodi reassures customers that they can comfortably wear their knickers for a full day, although they acknowledge that comfortable wearing time and need for extra support is down to each individual’s body and flow.
Simple, effective, comfortable, dry, secure and sustainable… are just a few of the adjectives used to describe period underwear. As a final note, there have been reports of toxins in some period underwear, although this has been disputed. When choosing period pants look for brands with PFAS-free (per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances) products.
Written evidence we received during the investigation into single‐use plastics: Unflushables. London Assembly, Environment Committee, August 2018, https://www.london.gov.uk/sites/default/files/plastics_unflushables_-_submited_evidence.pdf
What is the right absorbency for me? Modibodi, June 2021