Today, tomorrow or maybe even the day after? When exactly your next period will arrive, is always a surprise. Tadaaa, and there’s a blood stain in your undies. The solution for this? Leakproof underwear. Combining fashion with sustainability, the period pants of nowadays are anything but bulky and nappy-like. Looking and feeling just like regular undies, they’re the perfect secret weapon for (pre)menstrual days.
From bikini briefs to boyshorts
‘Period pants’ used to be what you’d call those old and well-worn granny pants you would wear when your period was about to start – so you didn’t ruin that nice new pair of knickers when leaking. Nowadays, the term ‘period pants’ still refers to underwear you wear during your menstruation, but for a different reason: you’re actually meant to bleed onto it.
Especially designed for that time of the month, today’s menstrual undies are anything but old and granny-like. They come in different colours, cuts and styles – from thongs and bikini briefs and from hipsters to boyshorts – and look and feel like normal underwear. The only difference is that they’re leakproof.
How does it work?
Period pants consist of different layers. Knix leakproof underwear has three. The anti-odor and antimicrobial quick dry cotton top layer wicks moisture away from skin, the second layer absorbs the liquid (up to two tampons’ worth!) and the bottom layer prevents your clothes from being wrecked.
Whether or not you can get away with just wearing leakproof underwear, depends of course on your flow. Not sure if you can wear them solo – without a (sponge) tampon, menstrual cup or pad? Try them first on one of the lighter days.
Wash and reuse
Just like regular underwear, you’ll have to wash period pants after use. This means you’re rinsing out the stained panties before throwing them into the washing machine. (Don’t add any fabric softeners as they can destroy the absorbent qualities!). However, the fact that they’re washable can also be seen as an advantage: it’s better for the environment to wash and reuse, than to use and throw away like you do with tampons and pads.
Ideal for exercise
Since period pants also soak up sweat and other little leaks, they’re ideal for exercise. They aren’t bulky, so there’s no chafing as sometimes happens with a menstrual pad, and the absence of a tampon string means it can’t hinder you during activities like mountain biking, spinning or horse riding. Apart from super thin, some are even seamless, which means they won’t show, not even when worn under a tight dress.
Did you know?
Period pants aren’t new. They’ve actually been around for over a century; in the early 1900s, women used so-called called ‘sanitary aprons’ or ‘period bloomers’ to prevent stains on their clothes. These early versions were made of cloth-covered rubber or latex which made them leakproof, but also unbreathable, sweaty and uncomfortable.
Later versions included plastic; in 1988 a Chinese company was issued a patent for a ‘woman menstruation underpants’ lined with a ‘flexible non-toxic plastic film to prevent leakage of menstrual blood’. In recent years though, new fabrics allowed for a more comfortable experience, which has led to leakproof underwear making a huge comeback.