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5 Ways To Make Your Period More Eco-Friendly

Did you know that people who menstruate will use between 5,000 and 15,000 sanitary pads or tampons over the course of a lifetime? If you’d like to know more about how to make your period more eco-friendly, keep reading.

Make your period more eco-friendly

Make your period more eco-friendly

 

Why Are Periods Not Good For The Environment?

It sounds bizarre that to say that menstruation is not good for the environment yet it’s true. It is not menstruation that is the problem but the products we use and how they’re treated that is cause for concern.

Sanitary products are the fifth most common item to be found on beaches around Europe. These contain plastic not just in the products themselves (a single pad can contain as much plastic as four carrier bags) but also in the applicators and packaging which take centuries to break down. In turn, our period products last longer than we do.

So, What Can We Do About This?

Well, we can change what period products we use.

Some of these include using:

  • Organic cotton tampons & pads
  • Reusable period pants
  • Reusable pads
  • Menstrual cups
  • Sea sponges

Which One Is Best?

In my opinion, the menstrual cup is best and that’s why we stock it. I’ll explain why.

Cotton tampons/pads use organic cotton which is mostly grown between India and Indonesia. This means it gets shipped a long way, you’ll constantly need more, it takes a lot of water to grow cotton and the tampons still produce waste.

Reusable period pants & reusable pads require changing every five or so hours and you’ll need to wash them quickly or they’ll really start to smell. Hand washing might be fine but most people will use the machine. This uses water and you’ll need at least two to three pairs of pants per day. Plus, they remind me of old fashioned wedge pants. They make this rustling noise which I’m sure other people can’t hear but I’m convinced they can.

Sea sponges inserted into the top of the vagina and it soaks up the blood. It needs washing out but then you can use it again. They are literally sponges that have been removed from the sea. Regardless of how they’re grown, it is still using the earth’s resources & potentially removing something from the sea that could sustain over life forms.

This is why we think the menstrual cup is best.  I’ve been using mine for four years now and the only maintenance it needs is boiling water and a teaspoon of bicarbonate of soda.

menstrual cupLet’s Talk About The Menstrual Cup

Menstrual cups do come with a bit more learning than the other products. For starters, there’s a number of ways you can fold the cup for best insertion and of course, you might have to pair it with a pad until you get the hang of it but cups do not dry out the vagina like tampons, they’re reusable for years (one should last a decade) and they don’t create any waste.

I think using a cup has decreased by flow by about half. It has definitely decreased and I’ve been using one for four years now. Of course, that might just be my age!

Are They Safe To Use?

Toxic Shock Syndrome is a condition that can affect any gender or age but is more prevalent in those menstruating. On average in the UK, approximately 2-3 people die per year from TSS. 

TSS as a result of tampon use is rare. It’s even rarer when using menstrual cups. To date, there has only been one report of TSS associated with the use of a menstrual cup. In this case, the user created a small scrape on the inside of their vaginal canal during one of their initial cup insertions. People with very long fingernails might want to consider cutting them or rounding them as you will be inserting them into the vagina.

Menstrual cups are made from flexible medical-grade silicone or rubber. They look exactly like a small thimble and they’re inserted into the vagina to collect the blood. You can leave for up to 12 hours before emptying and they can hold up to three times more blood than a regular tampon.

How To Change The Cup

In order to change the cup, you’ll need to insert your fingers into the vagina and feel for the cup. Gently squeeze the sides until you hear a release of air and then pull it out.

I wash mine out in the sink, rinse it with hot tap water making sure I get into all the crevices and then reinsert it. I sterilise it at the beginning and end of every cycle in a saucepan and add in a shake of bicarbonate of soda. This makes sure that it looks nice and clean.

Period More Eco-Friendly

Make Your Period More Eco-Friendly

Any Cons Of The Menstrual Cup?

Once you’ve got the hang of it, insertion and removal should take just a few seconds but until you’ve got the hang, it might be frustrating. It took me two cycles to get the hang of it and I insert and remove it now using water as a lubricant.

I’ve changed it in a waterfall in Indonesia, in toilets across motorways (take in a bottle of water to wash it out) and even behind a tree!

Want To Buy One?

You’ll need to work out if you’re a size one or a size two from the chart but then you can buy a menstrual cup by clicking this link.

We are so proud to be able to sell you the Kind organic menstrual cup.

 

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Make your period more eco-friendly by using a menstrual cup



We sell a huge range of eco-friendly, waste-free products from pot brushes to menstrual cups. We strive to find products that you’ll love and will find just as good as their plastic equivalents.

When we buy products to test, they undergo rigorous testing from us and our own kids to make sure they’re good enough for us to sell. We’re a British family and all of our shop products are mailed from right here in England.

We are easy to contact, either through the contact tab or directly by email at contact@gentlenaturalearth.com. You can contact us directly and I’ll aim to get back to you within just a few hours.

Qualified Female Fitness Trainers

5 Best Qualified Female Fitness Trainers To Follow

I’ve pretty much always been active whether it’s been dancing, hiking mountains, doing yoga, learning how to ice-climb or swimming in the ocean. However, it’s only been very recently that I’ve started to work out at home (thanks to four lockdowns). In my quest to be strong, I’ve come across a lot of rogue fitness gurus who, unknowingly, do loads of damage to women.  Here are 5 of the best qualified female fitness trainers I’ve found.

Qualified Female Fitness Trainers

Qualified Female Fitness Trainers To Follow & Workout With

Some Fitness Trainers Don’t Understand Gender or Physiology

There are SO many men out there who got buff and now “want to help women achieve their best” using the same methods. Noble, huh? Not really, it’s based on the misogynistic view that women are weak and can’t help themselves. It makes me so angry when I see my Facebook feed full of paid adverts from fitness men wanting to ‘help women’ yet their methodology and research is all wrong.

There are also a few other few issues with these men: 1) the majority of those men are not qualified. 2) Men lose fat 6 times faster than women and build muscle much more quickly because of testosterone. 3) Women’s bodies do not respond in the same way as men’s. 4) The “you just need to train harder and eat less” myth is rampant.

My Own Journey

I couldn’t understand why I’ve always been fit but fat. I’m very small (just 5ft tall) and although I have a 26″ waist, I look chunky. I’ve never got rid of this fat and I wanted to know why.

So I started to study nutrition, anatomy & physiology and discovered that everything women have been taught about exercise is wrong. We’re literally set up to fail the moment we consider buying exercise equipment or stepping foot in the gym.

Women are repeatedly marketed (targeted) with adverts for gym equipment that’s pink, gold, shiny, cute AND totally ineffective. It’s ineffective because it’s all too light. Women are taught that it’s ok not to lift heavy weights because they can just lift light weights and do twice as many reps. This is wrong and leads to muscle fatigue rather than muscle gain.

Women are also taught to eat fewer carbs and do more cardio. This is also incredibly damaging to women’s bodies and it leads to muscle loss and frustration. Carbs are not the enemy and static cardio destroys lean muscle.

Qualified Female Fitness Trainers

Qualified Female Fitness Trainers

Red Flags To Watch Out For

If you see a fitness person spouting these lies, then you might want to avoid them:

  1. Carbs are bad for you
  2. This workout burns 500 calories in an hour
  3. Here’s how to lose 10lbs in 2 weeks
  4. Use this waist trainer for a skinny waist
  5. Do more cardio
  6. Follow this low carb/low fat/low-calorie diet
  7. Only eat green veg
  8. Avoid all fruit because it has too much sugar in it
  9. Do a detox juice to lose weight & improve your liver function
  10. Do this exercise to lose weight in this one area (fat reduction in specific areas does not work)
  11. Weigh yourself every day
  12. Deprive yourself of food and only eat shakes and bars
  13. Count food as syns

 

Here Are Some Tips

Here are our top tips on exercise and being healthy for women

  • Ignore weights that are marketed for women. Men’s weights are definitely uglier but they’re so much better for us
  • Ignore exercise bands that are specifically targeted at women. They’re usually too weak to make effective muscle
  • Buy weights that are at least 3kg and above. Lift as heavy as you possibly can without causing injury
  • Do timed exercises rather than numbered sets (ie. do 60 seconds rather than reps of 10). This encourages you to do more & always do more. Like a competition against yourself
  • Squat every day. I never thought I’d say this but squats are so beneficial
  • Enjoy your food
  • Take rest days

 

5 Qualified Female Fitness Trainers

Here are the 5 qualified female fitness trainers that I have followed and used. I think it’s crucial to be qualified and have the ability to interpret and use science and research to back-up what they’re doing and saying.

Cassey from Blogilates

Cassey is based in California and has over 2m followers on most platforms. She runs regular motivational challenges and every month she sets up a new calendar and fills it full of her workout routines so you don’t even have to think about what you’re doing. After I had an injury, it was Cassey that got me back into working out and kickstarted my fitness journey.

Now, Cassey loves everything pretty and she definitely leans more towards glittery Disney Princess than Wonder Woman (absolutely not a criticism of her) however, her exercises are very easy to follow, brilliant for beginners, warms-ups and short exercises. Cassey explains everything in a really easy to understand way and I love hearing about her life in L.A.

She also normalises eating ice-cream and she makes life that little bit more fun. I still use Cassey’s workouts to warm up to and I incorporate her into a much bigger workout.

You can find Cassey on:

Susan Ohtake from Burn 360

Susan is also based in California and she really introduced me to and made me love squatting. I never thought that I’d say that but I have become a huge fan of squats lol. Susan’s initial video really spoke to me as she discussed different layers of problem fat and how it affects women. I had one of those Ah-Ha moments when I signed up to her Burn 360 course and she introduced me to squatting & lunging but more importantly squatting & lunging WITH weights.

Susan introduced me to really working hard & understanding why I should be doing certain exercises over others. Her videos are easy to follow, she really introduces the exercise and maintaining the correct form.

Susan offers one month free of her Burn 360 program so you can try it before you purchase it (although you do need to give your card details and then cancel it from your dashboard before payment is taken).

You can find her on:

Abby Pollock

Abby popped up on my TikTok one night and taught me how to squat with one leg and an exercise band and I’ve been in love with her ever since. She’s also the most qualified female on this list and I really respect that.

Abby is strong but she doesn’t mind telling you when she’s struggling and I love that. It’s comforting to see that the workouts she creates are hard enough to make her sweat and struggle too. She also normalises sweat, not looking glamorous all the time and doesn’t care if she looks sweaty!

Abby is warm, friendly & welcoming but not in an OTT kind of way and there’s no denying she really knows her stuff. She recently swapped from being a gym-goer to doing home work-outs (thanks covid) and this is reflected in her new workouts – which I think are awesome.

I work out with Abby at least three times a week and I always burn afterwards and I love it.

You can find her on:

Kim French

Kim is super strong and every time I see her, I am just in awe of how strong she is. Kim is British and the only Brit on this list, sadly. Kim transformed her life from frumpy starving, cardio mum to mind-blowingly super strong with enormous muscles that I am just so envious of.

Kim runs a number of plans which you can start at any time and she posts mostly technique videos to Instagram. I really enjoy these technique videos because she mostly concentrates on one exercise & its variations and showing you how to get the best out of it.

These exercises are slow and concentrate on form and are easy to understand. She is big on technique and explaining how that technique can help you get stronger.

You can find her on:

Marsha Hughes

Marsha is from Montreal and she runs shortcircuits-fitness. I bought a medicine ball after my injury and was looking for exercises when I came across Marsha on Youtube.

Her workouts are short, sweet & sweaty and based on strength conditioning HIIT. Her workouts are challenging but definitely doable and they’re short enough to really feel like you could blast them out in your elevenses break.

I incorporate some of her moves into my warmups and work-out with her about once a week.

You can follow her on:

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If you're looking for home workouts & building strength from home. Here are 5 Qualified Female Fitness TrainersSee Some Of Our Other Posts

  1. 5 Reasons Why Bamboo Is A Great Eco Product
  2. I want to be more sustainable but where do I start?
bamboo

5 Reasons Why Bamboo Is A Great Eco Product

Did you know that bamboo is amazingly eco-friendly? Here are 5 Reasons Why Bamboo Is An absolutely great eco product and why you should buy more of it.

1. Bamboo is the fastest-growing plant on earth (besides hemp)

Bamboo is a highly sustainable plant because it can grow to full size in just 3-4 months. In comparison to standard trees which can take 30+ years to grow, some bamboo can 3 feet tall in 24 hours.

This makes it a super sustainable alternative due to its naturally renewing properties moreover it doesn’t require pesticides or chemicals to harvest itself. This means cultivation is natural and less harmful to the environment.

2. It’s super-strong and durable

If you’ve ever touched bamboo or tried to break it for a DIY project, you’ll know just how strong it is. It’s of little surprise that it’s likened to steel for its strength and with entire homes built out of bamboo, you can see why it’s used in construction. 

The lifespan of bamboo is longer than you and I and with proper care, your bamboo goodies can be used time and time again without the worry of them deteriorating.

3. Bamboo is safe and hygienic

Bamboo fibres are naturally anti-bacterial without needing toxic chemical treatments, all thanks to its substance called ‘bamboo kun’.

Bamboo kun is found in bamboo fibre and is an antimicrobial bio-agent which gives bamboo its natural antibacterial properties. This prevents bacteria and microbes growing on bamboo products making it the perfect plant for naturally hygienic products such as bamboo straws and cutlery. 

4. Bamboo Is good for communities

 Bamboo production and manufacturing sustains traditional industries and creates stable jobs for local communities where bamboo grows. 

5. Bamboo is environmentally kind

Bamboo forests absorb two times more carbon dioxide than trees and generate up to 30% more oxygen than most other plants and trees.

Bamboo uses only 12 gallons of water to produce one pound of fabric whereas cotton requires over 200 times more. This means that bamboo requires one-third the amount of water than cotton. Bamboo is also a self-sufficient crop that needs no human irrigation and as well as this, bamboo plants have ultra-strong roots making the soil more stable and preventing landslides.

SHOP OUR ECO-FRIENDLY PRODUCTS HERE

Bamboo

Be More Sustainable

I Want To Be More Sustainable But Where Do I Start?

Making changes to your life can be daunting & it can be intimidating as to know where to even start. Sustainability means lots of different things to different people and how they’re more sustainable can differ. So if you’re looking for ideas on how to be more eco-friendly & sustainable, here are twenty people who write about sustainability and being more environmentally friendly.

Be More Sustainable

Be More Sustainable

1. Sustainably Chic

Natalie reviews global eco-friendly & ethical companies, sharing her favourites on her blog, Sustainably Chic. The blog is beautifully designed and the products Natalie reviews are both sustainable and aesthetically appealing. She’s a mother-to-be, so we’re excited to learn how she lives sustainably with baby!

2. Reading My Tea Leaves

Erin Boyle tackles sustainability by living simply and purposefully. She embraces the notion of “living small” and we love it! She makes suggestions on how to take smaller steps with her food, travel, and style blog.

3. Moral Fibres

Moral Fibres is a green lifestyle blog writing about seasonal recipes, energy saving, ethical fashion, eco-friendly gardening, ethical shopping, sustainable travel & more

4. Trash Is For Tossers

Lauren Singer from TIFT documents her journey living a zero-waste lifestyle in New York City. Everyone takes their journey differently and Lauren totally gets that! We especially like her posts called Easy Changes, which showcase a variety of little things you can do to work toward a zero-waste lifestyle.

5. Sutton & Grove

Sustainable duo Jill and Luke believe our choices, our voices, our actions and the way we live matters. They share eco-friendly brands that they love, fun DIY projects, sustainable travel and tips for a conscious lifestyle.

6. Going Zero Waste

After a health scare prompted her to make the switch to whole foods, all-natural deodorant, homemade cleaning products, Kathryn Kellogg started Going Zero Waste to share what she was learning. Her blog is filled with actionable tips and informative pieces on things like the circular economy and finding your very own zero-waste community.

7. Selva Beat

Selva Beat is an environmental magazine. They’re making environmentalism part of mainstream youth culture in order to get their readers active and excited about making lifestyle changes. They’re primarily a print publication but keep an eye out on their website for weekly content surrounding ethical fashion, sustainable food, and for quirky, colourful inspiration.

8. Eco Warrior Princess

Jennifer Nini has been blogging about ethical fashion for a decade and is deeply connected to the sustainability community. Her blog Eco Warrior Princess covers a range of topics from closet organisation to thrifting tips, organic food and political activism. Her site is thought-provoking plus she has a podcast for more inspiration!

9. Moral Fibres

Moral Fibres is a UK based blog that breaks green living down into simple to-do steps. Wendy is the founder of the site and has broken her content into 5 categories including style, food and travel. Each category gives actionable advice on how to make greener choices. It’s a solid lunch hour read.

10. Zero Waste Home

Zero Waste Home is the blog that launched a bestselling book. Written by Bea Johnson, a woman who adopted a zero-waste lifestyle back in 2008, heer goal is to shatter the misconceptions people have about the zero waste lifestyle and prove that you can live a stylish, healthy and financially healthy lifestyle.

11. Melanin & Sustainable Style

Melanin & Sustainable Style is a platform dedicated to sustainable development, social innovation and holistic living. Founded by Dominique Drakeford, this blog focuses on the intersection between the ethical and sustainable world and the experience of communities of colour.

12. Sustainable Daisy

Karen (not Daisy) is an environmental scientist, an ethical fashion and sustainable living blogger at Sustainable Daisy. Read earth-friendly product reviews, get thrifty shopping tips and learn new ways to simplify your sustainable lifestyle.

13. Old World New

Green goddess Addie Fisher is a lifestyle blog all about making old things, new! Starting in sustainable building design and navigating her way towards sustainable fashion, Addie shares how she pursues a greener lifestyle.

14. Low Impact

Low Impact is a non-profit organisation created to provide information, training, products & services to help people live more sustainably. Their mission is to help people reduce their impact on the environment, improve their quality of life, gain new skills, live in a healthier and more satisfying way.

15. Carbon Smart

Penny supports and energises individuals to make a real difference within their organisations, sectors or fields as they make the journey towards sustainability. She blogs about her thoughts, updates, links and essays on creating change for sustainable development.

16. Green Element

The Green Element Blog help businesses improve their environmental impact, improve their sustainable business practices, learn from others in the industry via case studies and other information.

17. My Home Farm

Watch this small home farm as they discover country life, home DIY, sustainable living, making their home as eco-friendly as possible and growing and making their own things.

18. Little Green Blog

If you are committed to a greener way of life or are just starting out on the path of eco-awareness, then you might find something within these blog pages to interest you. Little Green Blog has a passion to share the information they have gathered to inspire you to make the small changes you need.

19. Terra Infirma

Terra Infirma Ltd is a UK based environment and sustainability consultancy with an excellent track record in bringing environmental and economic benefits to their clients.

20. Treading My Own Path

Learning, teaching and sharing skills for sustainable living, zero waste, plastic-free, minimalism, real food and simple living. Lindsay supports others to make choices to live with less stuff and less waste and to embrace life more aligned with their values.

 

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Be More Sustainable

Be More Sustainable