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Your 2022 Step-by-Step Guide

To Reduce Menstrual Issues by Choosing Good Pads

Having menstruation every month is the common cycle for women. Having problems during menstruation is also common for most. However, common doesn’t mean healthy.

Here’s a surprising finding I got from 11 years of conducting menstrual hygiene talks for thousands of women in Singapore.

From the talks, I gathered that many women above the age of 25 start to suffer from a long list of menstrual issues.

And many of those issues can be traced back to 2 things:

  1. Their choice of sanitary pads.
  2. Their menstrual hygiene habits.

This article will be focused on how women can improve their menstrual health via their choice of sanitary pads.

Most of us girls either have zero education or very limited ones on this topic.

We rely heavily on what’s promoted by the media and the knowledge handed to us by our mother and friends, who most likely were not properly educated themselves in this area. 

Instead of basing our pad purchase decisions on proper menstrual hygiene education, they are usually the results of trial-and-error, mostly errors. 

Hence, we place high importance to absorbency, wings and price instead of safety, cleanliness and infection prevention.

For far too long, ignorance in this topic provided us women with a false sense of security. In reality, ignorance will not give you menstrual bliss, only menstrual crisis.

Today I want to lift the veil of ignorance by shedding light on how to prevent your menstrual crisis by being a wiser pad user.

The power of accumulated effect

Unknown to most, prolonged usage of sanitary pads and pantyliners that are not sanitary contributes to infections and other serious health problems in our lives. The problems are usually mild in the beginning, and they become more insistent and severe over the years.

The wrong use of pads affects our health in ways very similar to how smoking does. 

  1. Their adverse effects are due to long-term accumulation.
    • In this case, prolonged bacterial accumulation and exposure to harmful chemicals can lead to a multitude of issues such as rashes, infections, and other lethal diseases.
  2. It takes years for adverse effects to surface.
    • For instance, women typically experience menstrual problems after 30.
  3. Things can be done to prevent the adverse effects!

Over the past 11 years of providing menstrual hygiene talks and being in the feminine hygiene industry, we received many testimonies from women stating that their menstrual issues significantly reduced after they started using the right pads and changing their menstrual habits

Good effects were typically experienced between 3 to 6 months after they started choosing and using the right sanitary pads and pantyliners.

As such, we compiled a list of questions for you to ask yourself when you choose yours. These questions will guide and aid you in choosing the right pads for yourself.

8 Smart Questions to Ask Yourself when Choosing Your Pads

QNS 1: When do your pads expire?

The first thing we usually look out for when choosing our food and medication is their expiry dates. But when it comes to sanitary pads and pantyliners, we often overlook their expiry dates and assume that they are safe to wear.

Unfortunately, expired pads may have fungus growing on them and at the initial stage of growth, the fungus can be invisible to the naked eye.

At present, there is no strict regulation in Singapore demanding the display of expiry dates on sanitary pads and pantyliners. Hence, many brands do not have their expiry dates printed.

The next time you see pads on sale, think twice before purchasing them in bulk. Chances are, the stocks are close to expiry.

QNS 2: Are your pads kept sterile by their packing?

As sanitary pads and pantyliners come into contact with your blood and v-zone, they are supposed to be packed in ways to keep them sanitary and sterile.

 However, have you ever wondered if the packing is really doing its job to keep you safe?

There are generally 2 kinds of packing – the one made of aluminum and the one made of plastic.

Aluminum Foil

Plastic

Prevents light, dust, moisture and air from contaminating your pads.

Allows light, dust, moisture and air to contaminate your pads

Discourages bacterial growth on the pads before you even use them.

Encourages bacterial growth on pads, which may bring you issues.

Used for: Medical instruments, medicine, food, drinks

Used for: Items that do not come in contact with sensitive areas

To ensure that your sanitary pads are safe and sterile, choose aluminium foil packings that are resealable. Being resealable helps to prevent dust, dirt and unwanted pests from coming in contact with your most intimate products.

QNS 3: Are your pads kept clean when you keep them in your bag?

Most of us have a habit of keeping a couple of packets in our bags just in case our period comes earlier than expected. Some of us keep them in a pouch within a big bag. Some of us just stash them in a small compartment.

The question I have for you is what falls out from your storage pouch/bag when you flip it over?

Are there streaks of dust, a couple of misplaced coins, or perhaps some long-forgotten sweet wrappers that fall out of it?

My point being: Your pads may just be contaminated even before you use them if they are not fully-sealed.

Most of us assume that ours are fully-sealed. However based on what we have discovered and tested over the years, most packets have either loose seals that break easily or no seals at all.

This exposes your pads to whatever contaminants are in your bag/pouch.

CHOOSE Fully Sealed Packs

VS

AVOID Partially Sealed Packs

To avoid this, simply look for pads that are sealed fully and tightly.

As an additional precaution, you can look for pads in vacuum-sealed packets. Vacuum-sealed packets discourages the growth of fungus and bacteria due to the absence of air.

QNS 4: Are your pads scented? 

Scented sanitary pads and pantyliners consist of a variety of unknown chemicals. These chemicals can irritate the skin and cause allergies.

With prolonged usage, these chemicals can lead to increased susceptibility to infections and other medical conditions.

Your pads are safest when they are unscented, keeping the amounts of harmful chemicals in contact with your skin to a minimum.

That said, we understand that some of us use scented sanitary pads and pantyliners to mask the foul smell that comes during our menses. But continuation of this habit in the long-run will very likely worsen the smell and give rise to bigger issues.

Instead, opt for antibacterial pads to kill the bacteria causing the foul smell. You will notice the foul smell going away after using pads which have sufficient antibacterial properties.

QNS 5: Is the top layer of your pad really cotton?

The top layer of your pad is the layer in direct contact with your v-zone. Depending on the material used, it can either encourage or discourage allergies, itch, rash and acne around your v-zone.

Most brands use either plastic or synthetic materials for the top layer. Very few offer 100% cotton as their top layer. We highly recommend you to use 100% cotton ones as they are softer and kinder to the skin.

More importantly, the chances of allergies due to cotton are significantly lower than allergies due to plastic fibers and synthetic materials. Symptoms of allergies include hives, red marks, itch and skin tenderness.

Despite the many advantages of cotton, the top layer of most sanitary pads and pantyliners is not cotton, simply because cotton is expensive!

Instead, many brands mask that fact by using words like cottony, soft as cotton, cottony-soft and other creative phrases.

These phrases often mislead users into thinking cotton is used. 

If cotton is used, creative phrases that hint towards it will not be used. Instead, brands will state it as it is. Cotton is Cotton. Period.

Let’s be smarter and stop falling for such marketing gimmicks.

QNS 6: What is absorbing your menstrual blood?

The 3 minimum requirements before a sanitary pad should even be considered are their abilities:

  1. To absorb lots of blood within a short timespan in case of sudden flushes of menstrual blood.
  2. To “lock” the menstrual blood within the pads to prevent blood leakage even when pressure is applied.
  3. To have a dry surface.

Pads ability to absorb blood is dependent on the material used as the absorbent.

Low-quality pads usually use paper pulp as the absorbent, while higher-quality ones use Superabsorbent Polymers (SAP).

Superabsorbent Polymers

VS

Paper Pulp

SAP is the ideal material to use as an absorbent in sanitary pads. You can check yours by pouring water into your pads and tearing it open as shown in the video above.

QNS 7: Do your pads kill bacteria effectively?

There are two main bacteria causing most menstrual issues.

  1. Staphylococcus Aureus (aka Staph.A)
    • Associated with foul smell, itch and rash
    • Leading cause of skin infections such as boils and abscesses
    • Can result in TSS which is rare but life-threatening
  2. Escherichia coli (E. coli)
    • Leading cause of Urinary Tract Infections among women (UTIs)
    • Can affect both male and female fertility

To find out how much bacteria can accumulate on common sanitary pads, we sent them for tests at TUV-SUD-PSB Singapore.

The results were shocking.

In just 3 hours, the bacteria count multiplied from 94 000 to 270 000!

Just imagine how much bacteria has accumulated in your body over the years. It is no wonder that most of us face menstrual issues during our menses.

When you start wearing sanitary pads and pantyliners that effectively kill bacteria, one of the first signs you will notice is the reduction in foul smell.

After prolonged usage, the foul smell should completely dissipate.

Other benefits include the reduction of itch, rash, boils and pimples around the v-zone. More importantly, they can help prevent UTIs.

QNS 8: Can your pads help relieve your period cramps?

Technology has evolved in leaps and bounds over the years, pads included. There are now sanitary pads that help provide relief for your period cramps.

One of the most effective technologies is the use of far infrared in pads. Far infrared improves your blood circulation, increases your abdominal temperature and relaxes your muscles.

A 2012 clinical trial conducted in Taiwan found that far infrared inhibits prostaglandin produced by your body.

Prostaglandins is a chemical produced by your body which encourages stronger contractions which elevates the severity of your period cramps.

If far infrared technology does not relieve your period cramps significantly, please consult a doctor as severe period cramps are signs of underlying medical conditions.

If you are a sanitary pad user…

… and have come this far reading this, you might be wondering if a sanitary pad that ticks all the boxes above exists.

Yes it does! Introducing Alchemy.

Alchemy sanitary pads and pantyliners have all the required sanitary packing, high-quality medical-grade materials and bacterial-elimination technology. They can keep you safe and blissful.

You get to enjoy menstrual bliss at a promotional price today!

Elisabeth,
Be Transformed. Period.

Commonly Asked Questions

Yes they do. For some brands, their sanitary pads’ expiration date can be found on their packing. For many brands, expiration dates may not be printed as there are no strict regulations Singapore demanding brands to display sanitary pads expiration dates. However, when you use sanitary pads and pantyliners that have expired, you may experience harmful effects.

For a normal sanitary pad, we recommend that you change them every hour due to their inability to kill bacteria. Bacteria multiplies very quickly within minutes.

If you use good antibacterial sanitary pads such as Alchemy, you can change them every 4-6 hours.

Pads with harsh chemicals can irritate your skin and cause allergies. On top of it, these chemicals can lead to other harmful effects.

There are many possible reasons behind why your menses are irregular – be it late or early. Changing your choice of pads may help. Some women have testified that their menses come more regularly after using sanitary pads and pantyliners from Alchemy.

If you are constantly on panadols during your menses, chances are you are suffering from bad period cramps, infections or underlying medical condition. Sanitary pads with strong antibacterial properties can help reduce the infections, while sanitary pads that use far-infrared technology can help with bad period cramps. A common testimony Alchemy users had after using Alchemy sanitary pads and pantyliners is the reduction of panadols intake during menstruation.

Using sanitary pads infused with negative ions and far-infrared may help you with reduce the size and frequency of the blood clots. One such brand would be Alchemy.

If you have any other questions, you can contact us via
1. WhatsApp
2. Email su*****@al**********.com
3. Drop us a message here.

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You Deserve
Blissful Periods

You should enjoy menstrual bliss every single month. Start transforming your period with our recommended pads today!

About Alchemy

Hi I’m Elisabeth, the founder of Alchemy. We are determined to improve the state of women’s health and have been conducting health talks in schools and companies for the past 11 years.

Read more…

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You Deserve
Blissful Periods?

You should enjoy menstrual bliss every single month. Start transforming your period with our recommended pads today!

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You Deserve
Blissful Periods

You should enjoy menstrual bliss every single month. Start transforming your period with our recommended pads today!