Period underwear no longer means the giant granny undies you wear for a few days each month. Period undies are designed to absorb and wick away menstrual blood, be washed and then worn again over and over.
Period undies are underwear made specifically to absorb menstrual flow without the need for pads, cups or tampons. While they may seem like a new concept, period underwear has actually been around for a really long time, and there are now quite a few different brands producing reusable period undies. And period undies aren’t just for periods – they also work if you’re prone to leakage after having a baby.
Crafted from different materials, and with varying cuts and styles, we’re helping narrow your choice when it comes to buying period underwear.
What to look for when buying period underwear
Here are some of the key things to look for when buying underwear for your period:
Absorbency: Just like pads and tampons, period undies come in different thicknesses and absorbency types, including specific types for after birth and heavier flow, night time and even swimming.
Fabrics: Period underwear brands use materials that are known for their absorbency, wicking capabilities and antibacterial properties, including bamboo and cotton.
Style: Most brands cater for a variety of body shapes and needs – including period underwear for pregnancy, swimming, leakage and perspiration as well as seamfree and sensual styles.
Commonly asked questions …
The mums in the Mum’s Grapevine Baby Groups have asked some of the most common questions when it comes to using period underwear, and here are the answers.
Do you wear the same pair of period undies all day? Some women can, depending on their flow.
How do you wash period underwear? Each brand comes with its own washing instructions. Most will advise not to use fabric softener as it breaks down some of the functions of the underwear. While they are machine washable, most brands advise rinsing the underwear out before popping them into the washing machine.
Do period undies smell? As long as you follow care and wash instructions, they shouldn’t.
Won’t I feel wet? You shouldn’t, the materials used are designed to wick away moisture.
How do you change period underwear when you’re out? The mums in our groups recommend carrying a wet-pack bag or ziplock plastic bag with you when out to store soiled underwear until you get home.
8 best period underwear brands other mums recommend
To help you find the best period underwear for your lifestyle, we asked the mums in our baby groups to reveal which period undies they use and recommend. In no particular order, here are the brands they love:
Made super-slim, yet highly absorbent, Modibodi period-proof underwear is a clear favourite among mums in our groups. The period and pee-friendly underwear can hold up to 20ml or 4 tampons worth, yet is just 3mm thick.
“Love Modibodi. Used them during pregnancy, great for post-pregnancy incontinence and now for my periods. No leaks and super comfy.” – Lauren
The new kid on the block, Bonds period undies have layers of leak-proof protection, are anti-odour and are easy to wash. The moderate day undies can hold up to three tampons’ worth and are made from sustainably grown organic cotton.
“I really like Bonds, they fit well and aren’t too thick or heavy.” – Katharine
Made with a signature four-layer QuadTECH® technology in the gusset to keep you feeling comfortable and dry, Thinx period-proof undies are moisture-wicking, fight odour, are super absorbent and leak-resistant.
“Thinx. Can’t beat it for thinness! I can wear a moderate absorbency pair all day that I swear feels just like regular undies, and I used to go through at least 3 super absorbency disposable pads a day.” – Li
4. Love Luna
Made from microfibre, and disguised as regular undies, Love Luna have a comfy inbuilt pad with four-layer protection: a soft cotton lining, absorbent padding, waterproof layer and microfibre outer layer. The everyday brief holds up to 15ml or up to three regular tampons.
“I used Love Luna before I was pregnant and used them postpartum with pads and still do on my very heavy days which is most of my period. For peace of mind.” – Sarah
Accalia Aliya underwear is like a backup plan for your period. The hidden bridge inside the gusset discreetly secures pad wings or clasps while the undies act like a back up for light period leaks. They’re perfect for use with reusable pads, as that extra layer of protection.
These are the perfect ‘not quite sure if Aunt Flo is paying a visit today’ knickers. They hold about one tampon’s worth of fluid, so they’re also great on lighter days and for any time you’ll be sweating. And there’s no need to worry about smell, these have anti-odour technology built into each pair.
A design that’s crafted for maximum security, and ideal for wearing to bed as they’re absorbent even if you’re laying on your front or back. The range includes postpartum for maximum protection as well as protective underwear to use along with sanitary pads or tampons as extra leak protection.
All styles in the JuJu Period Underwear range are available in two different levels of absorbency – light (holds up to 5ml of fluid) to regular (up to 10ml or equal to a regular tampon). Designed to be comfy, with no tags and breathable as well as easy to wash.
Know a brand of period underwear that should be added to our list? Contact us and let us know.
Read next …
Looking for more eco-friendly, reusable options for women? These next articles have even more fabulous products:
- 15 easy ways to pack a nude food lunch
- Best cloth nappies recommended by other mums
- Best breast pads other mums are using (including re-usable options)
Continue your search for the best period underwear in Australia
Looking for period underwear and still not sure if any of these are right for you? Continue your search online by jumping into one of our closed Baby groups and ask thousands of other Australian mums what they recommend – ‘What to buy’ is the most talked-about topic.
Click and join your group today!