Did you know it takes a tampon longer to degrade than the lifespan of the women who wears it? And the average woman will use over 11,000 disposable, one-time-use menstrual products in her reproductive lifetime. That’s a hell of lot of tampons.
You might be buying less fast fashion and dutifully recycling your beauty products have you ever considered how sustainable your period is? Nope, didn’t think so.
Luckily, there’s a plethora of brands waking up to the fact that periods as we know them are totally unsustainable – and they’re taking action.
Sustainable British period brand DAME is leading the charge in this space, becoming the world’s first climate-positive period brand, meaning that they remove more greenhouse gases from the atmosphere than they emit. Now any woman choosing to use DAME’s products is actively helping to clean up the atmosphere.
The savvy among you will remember that in 2019, the period brand launched the world’s first reusable tampon applicator called D, which provides an alternative to the billions of single-use plastic applicators ditched every year (we even reviewed it).
Thanks to its initiatives, the brand has achieved climate positive status following an 8-month process in which the brand measured exactly how much carbon they generate in the making and distributing of their products.
This involved DAME scrutinising their entire supply chain and product lifecycle to work out the amount of carbon generated at every single step. This includes anything from the materials used to make period products, to the transport taken by employees to get to and from work.
Calculating that, in the 12 months since launching, they’ve produced 112.88 tonnes of CO2, DAME have invested in a carbon offsetting project to remove twice this amount from the atmosphere, with the net result being that the brand is now climate positive.
Now let’s get into the scientific stuff: The carbon offsetting project DAME has chosen to support is a clean water borehole initiative in Northern Uganda, which helps to bring safe water to communities displaced by conflict. The project succeeds in offsetting carbon by providing clean water to a community in which 60% of people were previously boiling unsanitary water over firewood in an attempt to make it safe to consume.
By working with local communities to build and maintain clean water boreholes, the project not only reduces the risk of illness and infection, but also means families save on burning firewood, thereby preventing the release of carbon into the atmosphere. It’s pretty major.
In order to go one step further and become net carbon zero within the next few years, which is something plenty of companies are looking to achieve, DAME is working to identify the carbon hotspots in their supply chain and correct these with cleaner, greener materials, technologies and suppliers.
Speaking about the sustainable strides they’re making, the brand’s co-founder Celia Pool said: “Sustainability has always been at the core of what we do at DAME and was the very catalyst for the creation of D – our reusable tampon applicator. We recognise that as a business, we have a huge responsibility to do everything we can to help tackle our climate emergency and give consumers better options. To us, becoming climate positive wasn’t a choice, but an absolute necessity, and we hope to inspire other businesses to do the same.”
We certainly hope it does just that. We’ll be watching…