I have a very personal problem that's going to gross the hell out of you. Since haters are gonna hate whether the problem is good or bad, I'll tell you about it.
I had an unfortunate circumstance happen several months after I wrote my positive review of menstrual cups - I lost one in my vagina.
On two separate occasions, I found myself scared, crying, and doing some heavy drinking while trying too find that little SOB. The last thing I wanted to do was go to the ER for them to fish it out. How in God's name I lost a freaking menstrual cup in my tiny vagina is beyond me. What I also couldn't face was a nurse smirking at my unfortunate circumstance, because it would have guaranteed some embarrassing rage right there in the ER. Eventually I found them, but who the hell wants to experience that again?
I went to several online Instead Softcup's review boards, and fortunately I wasn't the only person who had that problem. Experienced menstrual cup users suggested a different type. Since I really liked my first few experiences with them, I went online and purchased one with a stem (the Diva Cup) that would be easier to grip when you take it out. Thank the Lord I dodged another two bullets.
The bad news was that I had to go back to using tampons until I got my new menstrual cup, and Lord knows how much I think tampons are Lucifer's little tools of laughter at my expense - they cost too damn much money, and you never have one the moment you need one. Meanwhile, Melissa Harris-Perry is hanging tampons from her earrings, because she has a cold, dead heart.
But God knows my heart, and he knows how eager I am about permanently ending my relationship with disposable sanitary products. I was caught in a moment of desperation, and my husband sensed it. He suggested I do research on something else that wouldn't get lost in my lady bits.
As I did my research, I ran across a website advertising Thinx period panties - a line of period panties that absorbs better than tampons or pads. After more research, I found that some women replaced them with sanitary products, which sounded a lot better than losing a freaking menstrual cup in my vagina.
The first thing I did before purchasing was read as many negative reviews of the product that I could find. If I was going to drop $34 on a pair of drawers, I had to make sure they wouldn't rip when I farted, shred when I washed them in the machine, or fall apart because of a crappy sewing job.
The most negative reviews came from women who had never tried them. One reviewer said that she couldn't use them because it would be like "sitting in her own blood." According to the website, they have a layer of stitching that was supposed to prevent that.
Another reviewer said that she would rather buy $3 underwear from Target, and buy more as she needed them. But did I really want to keep wasting money on s*itty underwear? The crappy period panties that I have already has a shelf life of three months, and quite frankly, I'm sick of wasting money on crappy period panties. Financial irresponsibility is not what I want to be bringing with me in 2016.
The most positive review of the product was from another woman who, once again, had never tried them before. She said that she would only wear them as a back up to her tampon or menstrual cup. That way, she could avoid leaks, and quit ruining her underwear.
So I decided to order a pair. What did I have to lose?
Although the ladies in the review board had valid points, they were also satisfied with their already set routines that they didn't want to change. Plus *gasp* what if they worked? I might as well give it a go.
I went on the website and saw different styles of panties for each flow requirement. There are hip-huggers for high flow days (holds two tampons worth of fluid); hi-waist and sport cut for medium days (holds 1 1/2 tampons worth of fluid); boyshorts, cheeky, and thongs for light days (holds one tampon worth of fluid). Hubby purchased me the hip-hugger pair for $34, because I wanted to see how well the panties worked under pressure.
About a week later, my Thinx panties arrived in the mail. They came just in time, too. Almost six days later, Mother Nature decided that I needed a temporary chocolate addiction, murderous thoughts, and an internal body cleansing on the eve of fictional Santa's world tour.
So I went to my underwear drawer, and pulled out my new undies. After putting them on, I noticed that the fit was a little snug on me. My husband suggested that maybe it was that way to avoid leaks. Good point. But even at my skinniest, I have a large ass. If you have this problem, then you should definitely get a size up.
I was also very impressed with the feel. The outside material is soft, like lingerie, and thick like a pair of Spanx, but without the plastic layers inside the unit.
The outside of Thinx panties
The inside of the panty is lined with a soft layer of cotton, which felt good on my booty.
The inside of my Thinx panties
As far as the thickness of the underwear, I was surprised to see that they were actually thin. It was nothing like balancing a phone book between my legs, which was very convenient.
I also felt good knowing that I didn't have to do a ton of math problems to calculate the best time to change my tampon, or empty my menstrual cup. Hell, after the Midol and antidepressants kicked in, I actually forgot that I had on my special panties for several hours. Mind = blown.
I have the pair of undies that holds the most fluid, so I must admit that two tampons worth of fluid seems kind of weak. But interestingly enough, I had no problems with using just the panties. From the time I first wore them on Christmas Eve evening (around 5 p.m.), until the next day, I felt very dry. In fact, every time I used the restroom, I wondered what kind of wizardry Thinx was putting into their panties, because I felt dry for about than 12 hours (nine of those hours included sleep).
By the way, if you're a heavy bleeder, and you find it easy to shred through two tampons and a pad in less than four hours, you should probably wear these in conjunction with your tampons, and maybe consult your doctor. It may not be normal. Just saying.
So after my son and hubby went to sleep, I decided to see if any red stains would appear if I sat on a white towel. I am happy to report that there were zero leaks or stains.
As far as the smell goes, day one of my period is always my heaviest day, so I fully expected my draws to smell stank. But I didn't smell a thing. Thank. God.
When the time came to wash my underwear, I thought about what one woman said in the negative review forum about being unpleased with washing her menstrual underwear in a shared sink. Tuh! Just several hours before I washed my Thinx underwear in the sink, I was scolding my seven-year-old about peeing in the shower, so if I went by her logic, I couldn't wash them in my tub. The week before, I had to bleach my son's vomit out of the sink when he couldn't make it to the toilet, and her logic didn't work in that case either. No sink or shower in my home was safe from bacteria, and washing my period panties in my sink was light work in comparison to what I've already had to clean out of it. This is why God created bleach.
Anyway, he best way to wash your Thinx panties is by hand (obviously, because there's blood in there). When I washed them out, I saw all the blood rinse down the drain, and there was a lot of it. These things go hard! You can machine wash them, but not before you clean your sink. When you're done, hang them to dry.
So are they worth it? In a few words? Hell yes! Here is why:
- Let's say I decided to spend about $240 for 7 pairs of underwear at $34 dollars each, that means that they are going to last upwards 2-3 years, because I'm only using them once a month.
- If I use them in conjunction with my new, easier to grip menstrual cup ($36 dollars every 10 years), then that means that I'm saving about $70 dollars a year on panty liners and pads, and $120 a year on tampons.
- I'm also saving about $48 dollars a year on crappy period panties that I have to throw away once every three months.
- I won't even get into the clothes that were ruined from blood stains, because that's a hefty price within itself.
They're also worth it because a portion of my Thinx panties purchase went to helping women in developing countries. This made both me and my husband happy.
On their website, there's a short documentary about Thinx, and they touched on how women in poor countries often have to miss school when they reach puberty, or drop out altogether, because of their periods.
To change the tide, Thinx partnered with a company called AfriPads, and for every pair of Thinx panties purchased, Thinx funds a pack of reusable, washable AfriPads for girls in the developing world so that they don't have to miss school.
For me personally, buying Thinx panties is an investment, and I've found them to be a much better option than tampons.
If you ask me, aside from their high prices, tampon companies aren't very transparent with what kind of fibers they use to manufacture them. We won't even get into the women who have found mold in their tampons (thank God I wasn't one of them).
I just can't do tampons or pads anymore. If a menstrual cup and some Thinx panties will save me some headaches and cash, I'm here for it. And if you're interested in saving some coins too, you can get yours for $24 dollars if you click this link.
Have you tried Thinx panties? What do you think of them?