Make all Menstrual Products Plastic Free

Make all Menstrual Products Plastic Free

18 February 2018
Signatures: 248,608Next Goal: 300,000
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Why this petition matters

Started by Ella Daish

Mainstream period products can contain up to 90% plastic. They are made in their billions, are used for 4-8 hours, disposed of and then take over 500 years to break down. That's over 7 times the average lifetime of the person using them, meaning if Jane Austen had used them they would still be decomposing today! [1]

The plastic pollution conversation is heavily dominated by items like bags and bottles , meaning period products don’t get spoken about, yet they are the fifth most common item found on Europe’s beaches. They are more commonly found than straws and coffee cups! [2]

They contribute to the extraction of fossil fuels and after being used are incinerated, sent to landfill or pollute the environment.

It is estimated that 50% of UK users wrongly dispose of tampons and pads down the toilet, resulting in a massive 1.5-2 billion being flushed each year. When this happens, they enter the sewerage system and if they are not captured, they end up in our rivers, flow into the sea and wash up on our beaches. [3]

They contribute to ocean plastic pollution and overtime their plastic content breaks down into smaller pieces, known as micro-plastics and fibres. This poses a further threat to vital eco-systems where they can enter the food chain, even crabs in the River Thames have been found with period pad plastic in their stomachs.

This use of plastic in menstrual products is totally unnecessary and their harmful environmental impacts are completely avoidable, which is why myself and over 247,000 supporters are calling on manufacturers and retailers to take responsibility and bring about change by removing plastic from their period products.

With so many companies producing eco-friendly tampons and pads without plastic  - some since the 1980s - it is obvious that big brands can do the same, and there is no excuse for them not to. It is crucial that we bring about change so that these essential products are inflicting minimum damage. 

This petition covers tampons, applicators, pads/towels, wrappers and packaging. 

Campaign results to date:
Sainsbury's, Aldi, Superdrug , and Lil-Lets have stopped the production of their plastic tampon applicators, a move collectively saving over 28 tonnes of plastic annually!
- Before the campaign there was no access to eco-friendly tampons, pads or reusable products in supermarkets, now they are available in most supermarkets and retailers, this is so important as it gives customers true access to choice.
- Lil-Lets, Superdrug, and Morrisons have reacted to the campaign by launching and developing their own eco-friendly ranges!
- Decision makers have stepped into the reusable market, Lil-Lets have launched a reusable applicator, and Bodyform have launched period pants, and their parent brand Essity also included Tena in the move with incontinence underwear.

Please sign, share and together let's break the plastic cycle, period! 

Thank you for supporting the campaign!

Ella :)

Campaign hashtag: #EndPeriodPlastic

Twitter: @ella_daish Instagram: @elladaish Facebook: @elladaish1

When the campaign isn’t taking focused action on a decision maker, you can still get involved and support it! Here are some steps:

  • Signing and sharing the campaign!
  • Print off the campaign QR code and put it on notice boards at your schools, universities, and local shops. 
  • Starting conversations with those around you. Many are still unaware that these products contain plastic; by speaking about it and spreading the word, you are raising much-needed awareness!
  • Take direct action by opting for eco-friendly period products, this is a positive step and will show manufacturers through consumer demand that we don’t want them to contain plastic!
  • Get in touch with your local shop and ask them to stock eco-friendly products and if they sell tampons with plastic applicators ask them to swap them for alternatives like cardboard applicators.
  • If you find period plastic polluting the environment, please take a picture and post it on social media using the campaign hashtag #EndPeriodPlastic!
  • Take a picture of yourself holding a sign in support of the campaign and post it online using the hashtag #EndPeriodPlastic. The campaign had a day of action doing this, there is more information here.

Campaign features in date order:
Marie Claire:
The Guardian:
The Ecologist:
Solihull Observer (Lil-Lets Demo):
Glamour (Year of the Plastic-free Period):
Huffpost USA:
Huffpost (Sainsbury's):
My Green Pod:
Wales Online:

Film about the campaign called 'The Making of an Activist' :

[1] Plastic Periods:
[2] European Commission (Page 11) 
[3] Institution of Environmental Sciences (Page 19)

Support now
Signatures: 248,608Next Goal: 300,000
Support now