Are We Entitled to Know What is in Our Period Products? #PeriodAwareness #PeriodNonScents

Are We Entitled to Know What is in Our Period Products? #PeriodAwareness #PeriodNonScents

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Spirit Eco Health started this petition

Sanitary pad's purpose is not just to absorb. Hygiene parameters of the product, of how safe they are, should be disclosed on the packets. Unfortunately, people choose sanitary pads based on the cost, design and packaging.  Consumer Education and Research Centre tested 19 brands of sanitary napkins available in the market and found dirt and ants on some of the samples tested. When products in the market are certified by official agencies, consumers assume they are safe. In India, sanitary pads are tested as per standards that haven't been updated since 1980.

Do you believe we have a right to know what is in our period products?
Due to the lack of specific legislation and transparency about hidden ingredients, we could be exposed to harmful chemicals and fragrances in our period products without even knowing. All shoppers deserve to have information about the products they're using; especially those with sensitive  skin who need to avoid harsh irritants. We urge you to sign the petition demanding that period products be transparent about their ingredients.

Have You Ever Checked What's in Your Period Products?
There is often no answer on the label, which is unfortunate. Period product manufacturers in India are under no legal obligation to publish the full list of ingredients, unlike toothpaste, ready meals, and your favourite chocolate bar. Period products contain chemical and pesticide residues and 'commercially sensitive' fragrances that are virtually unregulated, and lack of transparency from period product manufacturers means we may be using products that can harm us. It is time for the Indian Government to put an end to toxic secrets and legally require full ingredient transparency on the packaging – including fragrances and 'odour control' substances.


So, What's the Big Secret?
There have been findings of toxic chemicals in period products, many of which are associated with cancer and reproductive disorders. Hormones can also be disrupted, and allergic reactions can occur as a result. According to a recent survey, 1 in 4 people (18-60 years old) who have used fragranced period products has experienced itching, irritation, and soreness, with 28% describing it as severe. Worryingly, irritated skin can also increase the chance of Sexually Transmitted Infections (STIs). There are many gynaecologists who advise against using fragranced period products, and they encourage their patients to use reusable products or organic one-time-use disposables instead.


Big Companies and Period Shame
Period advertising has for decades promoted shame-inducing messages suggesting that our vaginas and periods are dirty. The opinion that heavily fragranced period products will make women and girls feel 'clean' is promoted to women and girls who are menstruating. Vaginas are self-cleaning when they are healthy. It is not necessary to wear perfume. Period product manufacturers should not be allowed to determine what 'clean' smells like. Intoxicating marketing can lead to greater exposure to fragrance ingredients that are harmful. Contrary to popular belief, cosmetics would require mandatory labelling if they contain comparable levels of fragrance as period products. Furthermore, the vaginal skin is sensitive, so harmful chemicals can be absorbed rapidly and circulated throughout the body. According to research, these types of chemical exposures differ for black women and marginalised ethnic communities because they use other products that contain similar harmful chemicals. Make no mistake; menstruation is a big business, with a population of about 400 million menstruating women, India holds INR 70.2 Billion Feminine Hygiene Products Markets.


Time for Change
It's time for safer, sustainable, plastic free and affordable period products for all. Women alleged rashes, infections, irregular periods and bad cramping. Recent regulation in India has led to increased transparency but more needs to be done. 

The sanitary pads commonly used by women from all classes contain super-absorbent polymers (SAP), which don’t decompose. They gradually break down into what are known as micro-plastics, which contaminate soil, water and air. They also enter the food chain injecting toxins into the food humans and animals consume. Two of the ingredients used in commercial non-biodegradable menstrual napkins also have serious health consequences for women. These are dioxins that are used to bleach the absorbent core and responsible for side-effects in the body such as pelvic inflammatory disease, ovarian cancer, immune system damage, impaired fertility and diabetes.

Signing this petition will help to take action and tell the Indian Government to put our health first because Most women of reproductive age use sanitary pads during their menstrual periods for an average of 1800 days in their lifetime. They’re using these products from the age of 12, maybe younger, and almost until 50 – that's like four decades … once a month. Those who manufacture menstrual products should list all ingredients on their products and stop using potentially harmful chemicals if they want to protect our reproductive health.

#PeriodAwareness #PeriodNonScents

1- Times of India
3- Livemint
4- ncbi
6- ht media
7- livemint exclusive

95 have signed. Let’s get to 100!
At 100 signatures, this petition is more likely to be featured in recommendations!