It’s alarming to think that around 15 per cent of all Aussie women flush their tampons down the dunny. (Although not as alarming as the UK, where it’s more like 50 per cent.) Unlike toilet paper, which is designed to break down in water, tampons are designed to do the opposite, and absorb more water. Not only is there a risk that flushed tampons or pads will block your drains and cause a flood in your house or garden (nice), they aren’t always filtered out by the waste treatment plants, and can end up in our rivers and oceans (also nice).
So here’s the Juuni guide to getting rid of your tampons and pads - and their packaging – in a way that works for you AND the environment.
But first, a digression. In case you were wondering, all tampons sold in Australia have to comply with the Therapeutic Goods Association (TGA)’s Standards for Tampons TGO 103. That cites that for hygiene and safety reasons, ‘each individual tampon must be enclosed in a closed unit pack capable of maintaining the quality of the product until it is opened by the consumer’. Each unit then needs to be contained within a ‘Primary Pack’. So that’s why we have the amount of packaging we do. Juuni tampons are packaged with hygiene, safety and legal requirements in mind. But we also consider sustainability to the absolute extent that we can.
1. Choose eco friendly Organic cotton tampons and pads like Juuni are produced with the planet in mind. While non-organic tampons contain plastic, ours are biodegradable, meaning they will break down in landfill in just a few months. You can also chuck them in the composter, if you have one.
2. Use the bin next to the toilet Yep, that’s what it’s there for. If you aren’t in the comfort of your own bathroom, wrap the used tampon or pad in toilet paper in tissue and pop it in the nearest sanitary bin.
3. Recycle the box If you buy tampons like Juuni that come in cardboard boxes, you can recycle them guilt free. There’s no extra layer of plastic, so just open the yellow lid and in it goes.
4. Don’t buy tampons with plastic applicators Single-use plastics are a big no no, and nothing says ‘single use’ quite like a tampon applicator. You can read more about their negative impact on the environment here. Some brands come with cardboard applicators, which are the better option. Luckily, most Aussie women don’t use them anyway, which is why Juuni tampons are applicator – and plastic – free.