Below The Belt: Why Tampons Might Be Toxic

Guys, now’s the time you probably want to tune out because from here on in, I’m going to be talking Secret Women’s Business.

Still here? OK, but don’t say I didn’t warn you.

Girls, let’s talk tampons. Or more specifically, what it is that they’re made of and doing to our most private of parts.

I recently went to the launch of TOM Organic, a remarkable little company that sells high-quality, all organic tampons and pads. To be honest, I assumed it was a skincare launch, not knowing who or what TOM Organic actually was.

I quickly learned.

TOM (or Time Of Month) is the brainchild of young entrepreneur, Aimee Marks, whose mission was to create personal hygiene products that were free from pesticides, bleaches, chemicals and perfumes.

Which begs the questions: what is in our non-organic tampons right now?

Well, this is where things get tricky. After researching what tampons are actually made of, Aimee found that plastic, chemicals, synthetics and conventional cotton – the most heavily sprays crop in the world – are all common ingredients. In fact, cotton uses 25% of the world’s insecticides and women use over 12,000 tampons in a lifetime, so you do the maths.

Despite the belief that tampons remain intact once inserted, a demonstration showed that most of the regular cotton tampons sold at your supermarket actually started shedding when placed in water. All those little cottony particles started coming away, only to float around the water and spread. That’s what is happening inside you. Right now, perhaps.

We know the benefits of eating organic food (free from sprays and higher nutrient value), switching to natural skincare (free from chemicals) and using vinegar and tea tree oil instead of harsh, chemical-based cleaners, but when it comes to personal hygiene, there’s little word or education about what’s good, bad and ugly. In fact, it’s a product that’s remained unchanged for years. Until now!

Like organic food, skincare and cleaning products, the benefits lie in what’s left out, rather than what’s kept in. I’m not saying to never use conventional tampons again (OK, maybe I am) but I am saying that if you find your body burns up, tingles, heats and feels irritated when you’ve got your period, perhaps your body it trying to tell you something. And you should listen.

While there’s nothing glamorous about tampons, there is a need for us as women to ensure that we’re treating our bodies the best way possible. I was shocked to learn that things like plastic and insecticides and polypropylene were used in such an everyday, innocent looking product, and now, I’m all about the organic. Thanks TOM.

What do you think of organic tampons?
Do you want to use them?

Stay Happy,

Yaz xx



  1. enigmaedelweiss · June 13, 2012

    Ew. Screw Tampax. Going TOMs.

  2. Alexandra · June 13, 2012

    Excellent timing. I’m slowly working my way through all the areas of my life in an effort to get them all in tip top shape for wellness. I’ve just moved on to the beauty cupboard and replacing all my existing products with natural ones as i use them up (I hate the thought of just chucking them all out!) I’ll definitely be looking out for these the next time i go shopping.

    I’ve decided i no longer want to be part of the human experiment that is chemical foods and chemical products because as history keeps showing us we just can’t improve on nature and when we try to, some seriously terrible effects occur.

  3. mamacino · June 13, 2012

    I’ve been using TOM for a few months now…what a brilliant, and necessary idea. I have two daughters who aren’t in need of these things just yet but it is wonderful to know they will be starting off on the right foot when they do x

  4. Anonymous · June 14, 2012

    Hi Yaz, I have been using TOM for a year or two now and they are great.

  5. Pingback: Do you wear natural fabrics? | The Happiness Cocktail

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