I got my period this week, amidst all the insanity of a tampon commercial being removed from the air in Ireland, due to 84 complaints that were made.
We live in a country where women's body's have long been both shamed and objectified. On one hand seen as something to be ashamed of, and the other an object to be used for the sexual gratification of men.
And I've had enough. I don't want my daughters to grow up in a world where there is even an ounce of shame associated with a very healthy and normal part of what their body does. Just like over half the population, they will reach an age where they bleed for a portion of each month. And that's ok.
I'm bleeding as I type this. And I couldn't give a flying fuck who knows it. Not anymore. For too long periods were a subject of embarrassment for me and most of the people I grew up with. It was something that just was never discussed. What I knew about periods and pads and tampons was learned from snippets of American TV shows and whispers amongst my peers. No actual information.
So it will come as no surprise that when it came to using my first tampon in my early teens, it turned into a bit of a disaster. I had decided that I would be very sophisticated and buy a pack of tampons. After getting over the utter shame I felt at buying them, I was actually looking forward to having an alternative to pads, which I'd already decided that I hated. I planned it all out and had snuck a few tampons into my pencil case to bring to school. During class (so no one else would be in the bathroom) I asked to go to the toilet. With a single tampon concealed in my uniform sleeve, I hurried to the bathroom. Excited and nervous in equal measure, I opened what looked like some sort of weird candy wrapper, to be faced with a weird looking contraption. Unsure of what to do, I put the entire product up into my vagina. Yep, thats right. APPLICATOR and all. I wasn't sure why it hurt so much... I'm sure my 14 year old self was dreading the rest of my life. I managed to hobble my way through the day til I made it home and removed the whole thing, which of course had leaked everywhere and caused considerable pain in the process.
The point to that story? Talk about periods to your kids. From a young age too. Some kids start their cycles as early as 8 these days. Educate them on the products available to them and show them how they work.
I was kindly sent a few pairs of Modibodi period knickers to review. I was actually excited to get my next period so I could try them out. You see, I'd made the switch to using a Moon Cup after the birth of our first, Ava, four years ago. I was looking for a more environmentally friendly option than tampons. While I loved the Moon Cup in some respects, I was suffering majorly from leak issues. And the same happened when I tried tampons again a few times. I guess things just change after giving birth (twice!) and there was no way to prevent a few leaks. So I'd be forced to double up on protection- using both a moon cup and a pad. But I absolutely LOATHE pads. So the idea of using a moon cup with period underwear as my back up sounded ideal.
And let me tell you, it's still early days but I'm absolutely thrilled with the outcome. The Moon Cup catches the bulk of the bleed and any leaks are absorbed by the Modibodi knickers.
My verdict on Modibodi:
I'd highly recommend them. I did pour liquid on a fresh pair out of curiosity to see how much they would absorb... and its a huge amount. So there is no need to 'double up' like I'm doing. But this is the way that suits me. Everyone bleeds differently and you've got to find what suits you best.
They really don't feel gross, much more breathable and clean than wearing a standard pad in my opinion.
They do loads of different styles and levels of absorbency to suit all cycles. Just to let you know, I found that I needed to size up. Whereas I would normally buy knickers in a size 10, I found the size 12 to be most comfortable. I guess we all bloat when on our period. Truth!
Prices vary, but on average, Modibodi period knickers are around €25 per pair. You can buy as a bundle for more discounts and free shipping. Click here to check out their website.
Never be ashamed of your body and what it can do. Periods are wonderful things. They can be a pain in the hole sometimes- trust me, I know- but they really are an essential part of life. They tell us so much about the health of our bodies.
And sure, without them none of us would exist.
***I was kindly sent 4 pairs of Modibodi to review. However all views are my own and entirely uncoerced!