Mmmm periods. I was happy to finally see this topic get some overdue attention in the past couple of years, as I’ve always felt quite dissatisfied with our options as womxn. I was a late bloomer and first got my period in the 8th grade, while having dinner with a friend at a Chinese restaurant in India (hi Anishaa!) At first I thought the Chinese food was giving me a very bad stomach ache, and then I got home…
When deciding which way to go for flow management, I didn’t even consider tampons at all. Something about plugging myself up felt weird and I had zero interest. So I wore pads for the best of a decade, dealing with the heat rashes (hello Indian weather), friction and, later, painful chafing from walking all around Toronto. Luckily, the past year or so has brought me complete period peace of mind thanks to the following discoveries-
- The menstrual cup was on my radar, but again I didn’t really feel like plugging up my pipes, and then THINX came along. Game changer. THINX is the period underwear, and it’s awesome. It’s pretty, comfy, and lets you completely free flow (for the most part, some may need an extra something on the first couple days.) Me, I just go full THINX the whole time and love it.
- Clue is another badass invention. This one is a cycle-tracking app, and a pleasure to use. No lame cutesy branding, customizable options for what you track, and the option to share your cycle updates with a friend (or sister in my case). Clue lets me track cravings, flow, pain, and other factors that have helped me develop a very keen sense of where I’m at in my cycle, so empowering after years on the hormonal pill.
- Nettle Tea. Before I became vegetarian, I would always get a medium rare burger during period week, to give me a little iron boost. I don’t know if it worked, but it made me feel better and I’ve had to find a veggie-friendly replacement since then. Cue nettle tea and its planty wonder. Nettles are very rich in iron, and making a huge batch of tea for period week is now a cherished ritual.
- The Crimson Wave. When menstruating, why not participate in a little period pop-culture and listen to this hilarious Toronto podcast? The premise: two feminist comedians interview fellow comics, friends, and others on their menstrual herstories. They’ve been on a hiatus for a while now, but luckily for newbies there are dozens of old episodes to laugh along with.
And that’s it, a few tools in my period survival kit. Share yours in the comments xx
Photo credit: https://www.wikiart.org/en/mark-rothko/white-on-red