Are organic cotton pads, liners and tampons compostable?
Composting is returning biodegradable material back to the earth and unlike conventional pads, tampons and panty liners which are often made from up to 90% crude oil plastics and not compostable or biodegradable, if you use period products that are plastic free and made from from natural biodegradable materials such as organic cotton and plant cellulose (like the &SISTERS range), then Yes! – you can compost liners, pads and tampons!
A woman uses around 17,000 period products during her lifetime, so avoiding sending these to landfill drastically improves your own carbon footprint and goes towards helping save the planet. Composting organic cotton pads and tampons is really easy!
- Create the correct conditions (i.e. damp and warm) by making a well-sealed compost bin and adding to it regularly. Using a properly enclosed bin is also really important to avoid attracting vermin.
- Ensure your compost has a good balance of green and brown compost
- Green compost includes veggie peelings and grass cuttings etc. – softer, damper stuff that breaks down relatively quickly.
- Brown compost involves fibrous things like cardboard and pruning clippings, as well as organic cotton tampons, pads and liners which will take longer to biodegrade than ‘green’ compost.
- To speed up the composting process, it’s a good idea to break up the pads and liners by hand (or with scissors) before putting them in the compost bin. Ideally, separate the backing layer which holds a small amount of adhesive – this can be composted too.
- Pat yourself on the back for choosing period products that won’t contribute to landfill.
Be patient! It takes a while (2+ years) for period products to breakdown completely and returning all the building blocks of nature back into to the soil to continue the cycle for future plant growth.