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Periods & Cycle

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Quelle protection hygiénique choisir ?
Cycle menstruel

Which hygienic protection to choose?

Faced with the multitude of menstrual products available on the market, choosing the one that best suits your body, your lifestyle and your beliefs can be a challenge. In addition to the quest for comfort and efficiency, there is a growing concern: that of toxic products present in certain conventional protections. So how do you navigate and choose menstrual panties that are safe for your health, while meeting your specific needs? In this guide, we enlighten you on the different options available, their advantages, their disadvantages and, above all, their composition.

The importance of choosing your hygienic protection carefully

As a menstruator, navigating the world of sanitary products can seem both familiar and complex. Familiar because it's a habit, every month our periods come back to say hello (👋) and complex because our periods can have different flows during our life (light, medium, heavy) and in recent years we have discovered that the protections that we are used to using turn out to be extremely toxic for our health and also very polluting. Indeed, numerous protections have been found with carcinogenic products including lindane and quintozene, pesticides which have been banned in Europe since 2000. In others, we even find… glyphosate. And the list is still long ! This is why it is important to choose your hygienic protection carefully. Fortunately, many 100% healthy alternatives have emerged. But first, let's take a look at all the menstrual protection products that can be found on the market.

💡 Did you know that in 2023, scientists used real blood for the first time to conduct a study on the absorbency of menstrual products? Traditionally, these tests are carried out with water or serum. This element highlights the historical lack of attention paid to women's health. This is why it is essential to be properly informed about the protections available! At Gapianne, this is our mission: to create a safe place of trust around issues related to women's health!

What are the different menstrual protection products available?

Classic protections

So-called “classic” menstrual protection products are the best known and most widespread. Even though things are changing, if you take a quick trip to the supermarket, chances are you still have only two choices: disposable tampons or disposable pads.

Disposable tampons

I want them >

As we have just seen, disposable tampons are among the most commonly used solutions for managing menstruation. They are inserted inside the vagina to absorb menstrual flow.

Disposable napkins

I want them >

The second most famous option: disposable sanitary napkins . They were considered a great revolution at the beginning of the 20th century thanks to their practicality and are, still today, the most widespread periodic protection. Placed on the outside of the panties, they absorb the menstrual flow from the outside.

The new alternatives

New alternatives in menstrual protection have emerged in response to the growing demand for healthier options that are respectful of our bodies, our health and the environment. They offer a variety of choices. You can easily find them on our Gapianne website on the “menstrual protection” page.

Reusable tampons

Reusable tampons are an eco-friendly alternative to traditional disposable tampons. Made from natural materials like organic cotton, they insert into the vagina to absorb menstrual flow, then are removed, washed and reused.

Reusable sanitary napkins

These reusable napkins , often made of fabric, offer a sustainable alternative to disposable napkins. They attach to the panties using snaps or Velcro, then they can be washed and reused several times.

Menstrual panties

See all period panties >

Menstrual panties are revolutionizing period management. Incorporating discreet absorbent layers, they guarantee comfort and optimal protection. They are also starting to carve out a significant place for themselves in the periodic protection market. Particularly for their impact on the environment, because they are reusable.

👉 Find out how to wash your menstrual panties .

Menstrual cups (cup)

The Luneale menstrual cup >

Increasingly popular, menstrual cups are inserted into the vagina and collect the menstrual flow. They can be worn for up to 12 hours and, once removed, are emptied, washed and reinserted.

Menstrual discs

A little less known, menstrual discs are similar to menstrual cups. They also fit into the vagina. However, they sit higher in the vagina, just below the cervix. They are sometimes disposable, sometimes reusable.

Which compositions to favor?

It is clear that, more than the nature of the protection, it is mainly its composition that matters for your well-being. Many chemical components found in menstrual products can cause irritation and lead to more serious health problems. In this article, we present to you the compositions to favor to guarantee your safety.

Organic cotton:

Unlike traditional cotton, organic cotton is grown without pesticides, herbicides or other chemicals. It is therefore less likely to contain residues that can impact your health.

Absence of perfumes and dyes:

Some products add fragrances or colorings for aesthetic reasons or to mask the smell. However, these additives may be irritating or allergenic for some people.


Chlorine bleaching can leave residues of dioxins, persistent organic pollutants, on sanitary protection. It is therefore preferable to opt for bleached products without chlorine.


Pads containing plastic (like some disposable pads) may be less breathable, which can promote a humid environment conducive to infections. Additionally, plastic is non-biodegradable, which poses environmental problems.

Medical silicone for menstrual cups:

For menstrual cups, choose those made from medical silicone, medical latex or thermoplastic elastomer. These materials are hypoallergenic and suitable for internal use.

Certified products:

Certain labels or certifications attest to the quality and absence of harmful substances in menstrual protection, such as the GOTS label for organic cotton.

Manufacturer transparency:

Choose brands that are transparent about the composition of their products. This will allow you to be better informed and make an informed decision.

So which menstrual protection products should you choose?

For the first period

The onset of the first period is an important milestone in a young girl's life, and the choice of menstrual protection depends on various factors such as comfort, ease of use and individual preferences. For the first period, sanitary napkins and menstrual panties for adolescents represent two ideal options for starting your menstrual life. Sanitary napkins are frequently suggested for the first menstrual cycles, as they offer unparalleled simplicity. Placed on the outside of the panties, they allow the user to easily follow their flow, thus helping to better understand and understand their cycle. Furthermore, menstrual panties are also an attractive solution. These protectors offer secure protection while being similar to traditional underwear, which makes them easily adoptable.

For sensitive skin

For people with sensitive skin, choosing menstrual protection can be crucial to avoiding irritation, itching, or other discomfort .

The composition and material are essential, especially for those with sensitive skin. Organic cotton sanitary napkins stand out for their natural softness, free from perfumes, dyes or chlorine treatments , which guarantees you no residue of pesticides or other irritating chemicals. In the same spirit, menstrual panties offer a gentle solution for the skin . Generally made from natural materials, they minimize friction while allowing the skin to breathe , which is particularly beneficial for delicate skin.

Regarding tampons, those made from organic cotton prove to be the most suitable for sensitive skin , offering softness and safety without harsh chemicals . However, frequent change is essential to avoid possible complications. The menstrual cup can also be a good choice. It is made of medical silicone, medical latex or thermoplastic elastomer and also ensures optimal compatibility with sensitive skin and mucous membranes, provided that rigorous maintenance is ensured. And finally, menstrual discs, similar to cups in their design, also represent a favorable option for sensitive skin, subject to careful cleaning.

For sportswomen

For athletes, the choice of menstrual protection must take into account comfort, effectiveness and discretion during physical activity. And some protections turn out to be more suitable than others. The menstrual cup, for example, is at the top of the list. Its design allows it to create a waterproof seal inside the vagina, drastically reducing the risk of unwanted leaks. This device also has the advantage of having a long wearing time, up to 12 hours depending on the model, which makes it ideal for prolonged training or intense competitions.

Organic tampons are also a great alternative. They combine discretion and efficiency for physical activities. And for those who remain concerned about possible leaks, combining the use of a biological tampon with a panty liner is a wise strategy.

Finally, menstrual panties are also a comfortable option for sportswomen. Not only are they discreet under the majority of sports outfits, but they are also very efficient in terms of flow absorption, thus guaranteeing serenity and comfort during exercise!

According to his feeds

Each person with a uterus is unique, as is their menstrual cycle. The nature of our flow varies from person to person, and fortunately, the world of menstrual products has evolved to meet these specific needs.

Light and medium flows

For those who have a lighter or medium flow (or both), please note that all menstrual protection products are available in versions suitable for light and medium flows. Whether it's tampons, towels or menstrual panties, there is a variation designed for you. For cups and discs, there is no variation but they are perfectly suited to use for light/medium flow. Choosing the ideal protection therefore depends above all on your personal preferences. Comfort, ease of use, discretion, environmental impact... So many criteria to consider to find the protection that suits you. The most important thing is to feel comfortable.

Abundant flows

When you have a heavy menstrual flow, choosing adequate protection becomes essential to ensure you keep your head light. In this case, menstrual cups, thanks to their high retention capacity, are often favored by those who have to manage a large flow. High absorbency tampons are also a popular option. However, for optimal safety, some women prefer to combine them with pads or menstrual panties. The latter, particularly models specially designed for heavy flows, have demonstrated great effectiveness. If you opt for sanitary napkins, prefer the “night” or ultra-absorbent versions. As for menstrual discs, they are also a good option.

Menstrual protection to avoid at night

The main menstrual protection to avoid at night is the tampon! In fact, it is not recommended to wear a tampon for a long time without changing it. So leaving a tampon in for too long, such as overnight, can increase the risk of toxic shock syndrome (TSS) . TSS is a rare but serious condition caused by toxins produced by certain strains of staph bacteria. If you sleep a long time or have a heavy flow, the risk is even greater. Additionally, during the night, the flow can saturate the pad, increasing the risk of leaks. So, forget about the tampon at night!

L'équipe de Gapianne


Bienvenue sur Gapianne

Nous sommes 4 amies : Jen, Victoire, Anne et Marine. Comme les 34 millions de Françaises, nous avons rencontré différentes problématiques liées à notre intimité. C'est pourquoi nous avons créé Gapianne, une boutique qui propose les meilleures solutions bios, Made in France et non toxiques pour la santé ainsi que des ressources détaillées pour vous accompagner. On fait connaissance ?

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