How much waste is produced by period products?

How much waste is produced by period products?

With COP 27 happening this month and the news filled with updates on the climate conference, it may have got you wondering about your own carbon footprint with the products you use in your day-to-day life.

Have you ever wondered what impact disposable period products have on the planet? Well, today we thought it would be quite fitting to share some statistics here in the UK from WEN (Women’s Environmental Network). WEN is an amazing organisation who work to connect, inspire and mobilize women and people with periods to take action on issues that connect gender, health and the environment.


  • People with periods use more than 11,000 disposable menstrual products in their lifetime - based on average of 38 years of menstruation using 22 items of sanitary products per cycle, 13 cycles per year.


  • Disposal of single use menstrual products - tampons, pads and applicators generates 200,000 tonnes of waste per year. 


  • Most menstrual pads are made from 90% plastic. 


  • Plastic products can take up to a thousand years to decompose in landfills or in the ocean.


  • There are approximately 370,000 sewer blockages throughout the UK every year, of which up to 80% are caused by fats, oils and grease, wipes, sanitary waste and other unflushable items. 


  • Plastic waste kills up to 1 million seabirds, 100,000 sea mammals, marine turtles and countless fish each year. Plastic remains in our ecosystem for years, harming thousands of sea creatures every day.


Whilst the disposable stats are scary, there is an alternative and that is reusable period wear. Our purpose here at NORA is to provide people with periods comfortable & sustainable period wear that you can trust to keep you leak-free, as well as being better for you and the planet!

Whether you're at the beginning of your reusable journey, perhaps inspired by the environmental conversations happening due to COP 27, or you simply want to top up your reusable stash, head over to shop reusable period wear you can trust.