Bit of a non-sexy subject: Tampons

Ok, so it’s not the sexiest subject in the world but here’s a quick update on what’s come my way on the topic of tampons since the tampon tax debate blew up in October.

After MPs voted NOT to change the law on taxing sanitary products (check out the list of MPs who voted ‘no to change’ here – proof of our widespread patriarchal society?) – some sanitary product companies (see below) have announced they will take on that 5% tax on behalf of customers. This definitely deserves a mention.

I also very recently discovered, via my work friend Leah Hardy, that 5% tax on sanitary products is the very lowest rate allowable under EU law (did you know Denmark applies 25%!). The UK government has also just a few days ago announced money raised from this ‘tampon tax’ (estimated to be around £15million) will be donated to women’s charities: Eve, The Haven, SaveLives and Women’s Aid, says the BBC, which is also worth a mention.

Two brands who are taking on the tax and not passing it on to you include:

Organyc – a brand passionate about producing organic, unbleached and non-toxic sanitary products – announced they will pay the tampon tax on their products. The tampons are also biodegradable. – a subscription box that delivers sanitary products by post each month has announced the same. SanitaryOwl also provides tampons and pads to homeless hospices around London.

While on the very exciting subject of tampons, Organyc has produced this cool little graphic which highlights the importance of choosing cotton and organic cotton tampons. Being organic means no pesticides were used in the growing of the cotton (better for workers, environment and us).

Tampon Tax Graphic Organyc

With a bit of research I’ve just discovered conventional tampons contain non-cotton ingredients (said to be for maximum absorbency), such as rayon and viscose which are non biodegradable, and contain wood pulp which requires a lot of chlorine bleaching and chemical processes. So the argument is why not choose an alternative that uses natural and organic ingredients instead that can break down easily and made without synthetics or chlorine bleach.

Several friends have moved onto Mooncup, and while it seems a bit weird to get your head round at first, I do believe it’s the best option forward in the long run, for health, pocket and environment. At the end of the day tampons flushed down the loo, which I’m sure is what most people do despite being told not to, clog drains and sewers and eventually end up on landfill.

Check out this video produced by Mooncup which is really cleverly done (I admit I didn’t think a ‘rap about tampons’ would be any good but I eat my words!).

While I get my brain into gear to move over to Mooncup, I’ll be sticking to chlorine-free and natural cotton/organic tampons such as those from Organyc for sure. They are about a pound more expensive than other brands but I don’t think that’s too much.

One more thing…for a long time Boots has only sold conventional non-cotton sanproducts which has always bothered as an unfair, and a disservice to women. Now you can pick up cotton tampons which, of course, is an improvement but still no organic option! I’m sure the more women demand to see natural and organic sanproducts the quicker Boots will be to deliver.

Would love to know what you think… if you’re a Mooncup convert, thinking of becoming one, committed to cotton and organic, or don’t see what the fuss is about and love your conventional sanproducts! Let me know in comments below (just click + button). x



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