The Best Guide for How Many Period Panties You’ll Need
Period panties are a modern solution to an age-old predicament: how do I go on with my day like I’m not bleeding from my “power source?” It goes without saying that wanton free-bleeding has probably never been an accepted visual in polite society, and although it’s more accepted now it’s still gross to walk around without some sort of protection against odor and stains.
Period panties provide a convenient solution that doesn’t require dragging belts, pads, saddles with wings, or cotton shaped like a missile in your purse. They are in a word, divine. But making the switch to period panties can be tricky, especially if you are in the habit of just plugging it up with whatever’s handy and not paying attention to the nitty-gritty of your monthly flow.
Why Menstruating People Switch
There are many reasons why you might want to ditch tampons and pads. Some people say they make their period cramps worse. As tampons fill with blood they become larger and can cause discomfort, even pain.
Another reason might be the constant checking for leaks in your underwear. Just when you think you’ve picked the right size for that day’s flow your body decides to gush more than usual and you’re stuck wearing blood-stained clothing.
Yet another reason could be the negative environmental impact that discarded tampons and packaging have on our world. With reusable period panties, that problem is moot.
Period panties are more comfortable, less damaging to the environment, and more economical. It just makes more sense. Take these stats for example:
- Up to 15,000 used tampons are discarded by the average person throughout their lifetime.
- A person can easily spend upwards of $18,000 on tampons and pads over their lifetime.
- Period panties can be used for up to 5 years with careful handwashing.
Period Panties Just One of Many Options
There has also been a resurgence in other free-bleeding accessories. Menstrual cups work well as a stand-alone option or together with period panties for people with a heavy flow.
Reusable pads made a brief appearance but have mostly been set aside in favor of period panties that are so much easier to deal with.
Ok, I’m Convinced. How Do I Start?
Great! Period panties will be the thing you wished you had known about all along once you get into a rhythm and are intimately aware of your body’s functions.
Free-flowing may feel a bit strange at first but once you realize how much more natural it is, how much less cramping you’re likely to have, how much more convenient it is, and how much better it is for the environment, and your wallet, you’ll be hooked.
Test Drive Them
This part you’ll want to do at home in private. After sourcing the best period panties, wear them at home during your menstrual cycle. Take note of the following:
- How they feel when you go to the bathroom. Do they get damp pretty quickly? Are they leaking? How absorbent are they?
- When you wear them at night can they take all the liquid your body pushed out? If not, you might want to level up to a higher absorbency model.
- How many pairs are you wearing throughout the day? Is one pair enough? Two? Three? If it takes more than three pairs during the day, we recommend using period panties as a backup to another environmentally-friendly, free-flow option.
How Often Do I Change Period Panties?
Again, this is individual but generally speaking, you’ll want to change your period panties every 6-8 hours, more often if you have a very heavy flow.
Some people don’t mind free-flowing for longer amounts of time. It just depends on how comfortable you are with being moist. Even for the most squeamish, you’ll be able to wear a single pair during the night because you’ll be sleeping and won’t mind.
In a nutshell, free-flowing is a state of mind and an attitude. Once you become comfortable with this natural process you’ll be free of any stigmas and urges to check your leak status every 5 minutes.
Fit the Number of Period Panties to Your Individual Flow
Once you’ve done the at-home test drive, you’ll have a good idea of your flow and how often you change panties per day. The biggest clue is how many changes you make on your heaviest days.
Also, think about the length of your period. Some people only bleed for a couple of days while others bleed for up to 10 days. Having enough panties on hand is adequate, having a few extra pairs is better.
If you don’t want to buy an excessive amount of panties, you’ll most likely have to hand wash a few pairs before your cycle is finished. If you’d rather not do that until the tide has receded, then buy a few more pairs or support it with a menstrual cup.
How Many Pair You’ll Need
Most people want to wear as few pairs as possible each day and that quantity is usually 1-3 pairs. If you change them every 8 hours or so, you’ll need 3 pairs per day.
If your flow is lighter on the first and last days, you can probably get by with 2 pairs for each of those days, and 3 pairs on your heavy days. Just do the math and weigh that against your joy or aversion to hand washing.
So what’s the bottom line on how many period panties you’ll need? It’s as individual as you are. The important steps are testing them during your cycle, becoming very familiar with your own flow process, and becoming comfortable with the concept.
The basic guide is 1-3 period panties for each day of your period. You can adjust accordingly depending on how much hand laundry you want to do during your cycle.
The Positives of Period Panty Life
People who switch to period panties are hooked for life. They feel freer to enjoy life during their cycle and are happy to do their part for the planet.
If you’d like more info about making the switch, check out a few blogs and period panty websites.