Busting Myths – Do Period Pants Smell?

period pants with cotton stick on them
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Period pants can divide opinions, and I get it, it is easy to make assumptions about products and even more so about new and different ones but if we don’t break down those myths that somehow end up doing the rounds we won’t see a positive change for both our environment and also our bodies. So, I want to cover some of the period pant topics that seem to crop up quite often. In my last busting myths article, I covered whether or not period pants are bulky (spoiler alert, they aren’t), so I now want to move on to whether period pants smell.

Why Do So Many People Think Period Pants Smell?

The simple answer is that we have been made to believe that periods do smell via years and years of targeted marketing. If you think that vaginas are dirty, smelly, unhygienic and that periods are even worse then you have more likely than not learnt this thanks to the companies who want you to purchase their products. Vaginas, if left to their own devices, will have a perfectly balanced pH, will be clean and have a natural odour. Unfortunately, through the use of “feminine hygiene” perfumes/soaps/cleansers and single-use period products that are made from plastics and chemicals, we have created issues that weren’t ever actually there – disrupted pH, irritations, increased sweating (hello plastic against skin), dryness etc. So, naturally, when the suggestion of using a period product that is simply made from material comes up, many people will immediately think yuck, those must stink! But I wanna clear this myth up… They don’t!

me wearing the high waisted period pants from WUKA

Period Pants Don’t Smell

And the reason why is because as soon as you ditch all of the above I just mentioned, your vagina can begin to just do its thing. Period pants, like the popular brand WUKA, are made with cotton which is gentle on your skin and breathable. On top of this, they contain layers of materials which are specifically designed to wick moisture away from the body keeping you protected, dry and odour free.

And period pants are of course washable and as long as your washing machine is doing its job, your pants will always come out clean.

showing the side of the WUKA period pants

But Isn’t Washing Period Pants a Hassle?

Period pants are really easy to care for. I always start with a quick cold rinse by hand to remove the bulk of your period blood which should help to prevent staining and increase their lifespan. When it comes to washing, in general, most brands will advise washing your pants on either a 30° or 40° wash, there is no need to be going high here (no boil washes please!) A normal wash setting on your machine will be sufficient enough to clean your pants, as will your usual dose of washing powder. The only thing you shouldn’t do is add conditioner as this will affect their absorbency.

Your pants can go into a wash with other items such as towels and clothing, they don’t just have to go in with other reusable period products. You’ll want a good-sized load as the agitation from other fabrics will help with a deeper clean. Once they are washed you just hang them up to air dry and then they are ready to use again.

Washing them well and regularly will keep your period pants clean, fresh, smell-free and will, of course, make them last longer.

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Period pants do not smell, not in the way we have all become accustomed to using single-use pads. Once you make the change you will quickly notice a distinct difference in odour, your period flow and overall comfort.

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