Frugal Mom: Reusable Tampons

Catherine McDiarmid-Watt | Saturday, November 21, 2020 | 15 comments
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Image: Baby Sock Army

Image: EvaWear Period Panties:2 Pack Hipster for Teens Girl Women / Leakproof Briefs for Heavy Flow Postpartum Menstrual underwear Various Styles
Period Panties
Ready to give up disposable paper tampons, but not ready to give up their convenience and to switch to cloth pads?

For an inexpensive but controversial solution, here's a Frugal Mom Tip for you!

Buy 6 pair (or more) of cotton-rich white or organic baby socks.

Wash (and dry) three times with a natural, mild soap - rinsing well.

At your next period, simply roll up one baby sock into a tight roll, and insert as you would a paper tampon.

If you need more absorbency, use two baby socks rolled up.

Replace it with the next baby sock as needed. Rinse the used one out well, and store dry until washday.

Note from Are they safe though? The main contributing factor for TSS seems to be the rayon fibres in regular tampons (basically the bacteria multiplies readily on the rayon fibres and can cause TSS).

All-cotton tampons have not be found to breed bacteria like rayon does. So it would seem that if an all-cotton disposable tampon is safer for you than a rayon one, then an all-cotton reusable tampon might be safer for you than a rayon disposable one.

Regular disposable tampons are not sterile (just because they are white, wrapped in plastic and look sterile doesn't mean they are). Other things that go into vaginas also aren't sterile (penises, vibrators, fingers etc.)

You could boil or soak the tampons in a sterilizing solution if you wanted to.

Image: Organic Tampons (set of 10) Merino Wool Crochet | Brand: Memawscustomcrochet
Organic Tampons

Patterns and instructions for knit/crochet tampons:

🧦 Mama cloth...reusable tampons

🧦 Reusable tampon pattern by cherade9 - Ravelry

🧦 TAMPONS | Free crochet pattern - Garnknuten

Ready-Made Knit/Crochet Tampons:

🧦 Crochet tampon | Etsy

🧦 Organic Tampons (set of 10) Merino Wool Crochet

More information on Knit/Crochet Tampons:

🧦 Crocheted Tampons- A Washable and Reusable Sanitary Product for Women

🧦 7 Things You Need to Know about Handmade Reusable Tampons

Image: DivaCup - Menstrual Cup - Feminine Hygiene - Leak-Free - BPA Free - Model 1
If this is all too much for you, consider the Diva Cup, Lena Menstrual Cup, Venus Menstrual Cup or Natural Sea Silk Sponges - great alternatives to disposable tampons.

These menstrual cups collect the flow rather than absorbing it, so your vaginal tissues aren't dried out as they can be by disposable tampons.

These menstrual cups can last up to ten years.

Spend less time worrying about leaks and looking for bathrooms. The DivaCup can be worn for up to 12 hours, depending on your menstrual flow.

Join thousands of first-time menstruation cup users who say they will never go back to using pads and tampons. .

Image: The Beppy tampon is a soft, flexible sponge that you wear inside during your period. Beppy offers invisible protection, even up to 8 hours
Beppy Tampon

Shopping Suggestions:

🧦 Beppy Tampon - a soft, flexible sponge you wear inside during your period. Beppy offers invisible protection, even up to 8 hours

🧦 Diva Cup #0 - Ideal for anyone under 19 years old, wear for 12 hours a day

🧦 Diva Cup #1 - Ideal for anyone between the ages of 19 and 34, who haven't given birth vaginally

🧦 Diva Cup #2 - Ideal for anyone over 35, that have a heavier flow or have given birth vaginally

🧦 Lena Menstrual Cup - Dance, run, swim and sleep with your Lena Cup – think of all the times your period held you back.

🧦 Venus Menstrual Cup - Choose a size based on your comfort & needs during your menstrual flow.

🧦 EcoBlossom Menstrual Cups - Made using soft silicone which is comfortable to wear, and offers up to 12 hours of reliable leak proof and odor proof protection

🧦 Natural Sea Silk Sponges - great alternatives to disposable tampons.

🧦 More Menstrual Alternatives - Period Panties, Menstrual Cup Steamer, FLEX Menstrual Disc, Carrying Case, Sea Pearls, cloth pads, and more!

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About Catherine: I have been writing my Frugal Baby Tips since 1982, when I was a young divorced mom of two - for my baby product company, Born to Love. I am now mom to three grown up sons, and a grandma - and happily married to a wonderful man. We have rescued two little dogs, Denny and Dexter - and a rescue cat, Bella.

Taking care of baby and mom needs naturally, does not have to cost a whole lot of money! Money-saving tips on diapering, diaper washing, safety, sling and baby carriers, toys, clothing, nursing, menstrual needs, traveling with kids, and more!

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  1. Anonymous says:

    Really? Really? Maybe clipping coupons would make a little more sense.

  2. Anonymous says:

    I feel like this would hurt, putting a dry sock in your vagina

  3. Kerri says:

    Personally, some things in life are a necessity but should NOT be reused.

  4. Bre says:

    I use the Soft Cup. It is similar to the diva cup. I could not imagine using this technique though. How do they not leak? What if one were to fall out? I couldn't do it but each to their own I guess =]

  5. desirae young says:

    ohh wow I think I just puked!

  6. Try buying a "Keeper" instead. My 27 year old daughter has been using one for 12 years, I used my "Keeper" for 10 and then survived menopause. Ours were from the Biologic company ( I think)

  7. I'm sorry but, unless the AMA says this is okay, or a LICENSED OB/GYN says it, this woman is off her rocker! Regular tampons cause toxic shock syndrome - imagine what THIS would do! Yeeeikes!

  8. Emma says:

    Let's see..

    I'm a prepper. So I like to keep stocks of canned goods etc, just in case. One of my other stashes, is a bunch of female sanitary products. If I were ever in a situation where I ran out, and it was a SURVIVALIST situation, I'd do this. All the naysayers and the like, who are calling this lady nuts, put yourself in that position, if you can. If you were bleeding and only had access to something like this, you'd use them. You might not like the idea, nor would you like the idea of admitting it, but you'd use them.

  9. One, I think this would HURT worse than pulling a dry tampon out. Two, granted the vagina has an end & these couldn't get lost forever, but how do you pull it out? If it wasn't fully inserted it would be very uncomfortable.
    Third, I may use a cup but this is just taking things a little too far IMHO.


  11. HiLLjO says:

    It is AMAZING the self-shame people project onto others who have no issues with their own body/its waste products.

    If it works for you, cool. I don't like things inside so I use pads.

  12. Unknown says:

    I am disabled with no car, and often i'll be days without a way to get to the store. I don't know that I'd do this but I have had to cut a towel into lengths to use as pads...wash them out etc. you do what you have to do esp if you are alone and have no one to help you or no way to get to a store. how do you think our ancestresses did it.

  13. tiff says:

    i would ask a dr first. i don't think you are crazy, i do think you are thinking outside the box. iwouldn't do this, but to each their own.

  14. christal says:

    I can't believe how ignorant some of these comments were. It's just cotton but from the appalled tone of some you'd think you were shoving a dead roach up your vagina. I have used cloth pads for a couple of years now and I love them. It's better for the planet, I no longer get irritated from disposables, they dont stink like disposables do, and they are luxurious in how comfortable they are. I'm looking into making some cloth tampons with strings now and came across this page. I'm not ashamed of my body and I find nothing gross about my period. What I do find gross now is disposables.

  15. Anonymous says:


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