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Period Pants: Do You Have to Carry Blood Around All Day?

Here at Cheeky Wipes we've been doing our 'game-changing' period pants for 5 years now. But we totally understand that the concept can still feel new and weird to anyone who has been using disposable period products such as pads or tampons for their entire lives.

Do you carry blood filled pants all day?

One question which comes up a LOT on our social media is 'Yuck, do you have to carry pants full of blood around all day?

Technically, yes, if you use period panties, you may need to carry pants with blood in them at some point. However there are some valid points worth noting:

  • Period Pants are rarely 'full of blood' as normal periods are only 85ml for an entire period
  • You don't need always need to change during the day, it depends on your flow
  • Wetbags make it easy to carry clean and soiled menstrual products if necessary

We'll explain in more detail:

"First time using period pants and they're amazing! A real game changer, I never really write reviews but felt I needed to for Cheeky Wipes! I use them for my whole period, no leaks! Really impressed that I don't need to use any other form of period product. Thank you!" Trustpilot Review

How Period Underwear Works

Understanding Period Underwear

Period Underwear is very simple really. Any company who tries to make it more complicated than this is trying to blind you with science! All period underwear is made up of layers:

  • Moisture Wicking Layer
  • Absorbent Layer (s)
  • Leak Proof Layer
  • Outer Fabric Layer

Moisture Wicking Layer

This layer goes against your skin, wicking away wetness, keeping you feeling dry.

Absorbent Layer (s)

These layers absorb the wetness and trap it there. Some pants will have multiple absorbent layers which mean additional absorbency, great for heavy periods.

Leak Proof Layer

This layer is super important and is usually heat bonded waterproofing which stops any wetness leaking through.

Outer Fabric Layer

This outer layer is generally stretchy and snug for a good fit. Period pants come in all sorts of outer layers, cotton, organic cotton, bamboo, stretchy nylon. Whichever you choose comes down to personal preference.

How often to change period underwear

Changing Period Underwear

We also get asked 'how often should I change period underwear'. When we test our period underwear, it's tested by REAL people who wear the pants themselves and give us their feedback on how we should rate the absorbency.

There is NO one right answer to this as period flow varies so much from person to person, both in terms of volume and flow rate. A person with 'normal' periods should change their period underwear every 4 to 6 hours.

Some people will get 3 or 4 hours out of a pair of period pants. In some circumstances discussed below, it's possible to get 12 hours out of your period pants DEPENDING ON YOUR FLOW and the absorbency of the pants.

Shop Period Kits

How to Use Period Underwear at Work/School?

If you are in a position where it's tricky to change your period pants during the day because you're at school or work, there are a few ways to make it easier.  Here's how to use period underwear at work or school:

  • Try heavy flow pants
  • Use quick change period pants
  • Use period underwear with a reusable pad

Try heavy flow period underwear

Unlike tampons where you shouldn't use a heavier absorbency than your flow for danger of toxic shock, this isn't an issue with period undies. Go for heavy flow period underwear to avoid having to change during the day.

Put a clean pair on in the morning and then another clean pair when you return home from school / work.

Both my daughters (aged 12 and 14) wear the bamboo period shorts at school and have no problems wearing them all day without changing. The youngest has heavy periods and our period shorts still cope admirably!

Use quick change period pants

Jo our Head of Customer Journey loves the new detachable quick change period pants for ease of changing during the day. And Kirstin loves them too as she shared in a blog post about her recent holiday where she appreciated their quick drying capabilities!

Use period underwear with a reusable pad

This was always my go to on my heaviest period days. NOT because the pants weren't absorbent enough, but because I wanted to feel fresh. I would wear our regular period pants with a reusable cotton pad.

At lunchtime, I'd simply remove the reusable sanitary pad, pop it into one of our wetbags and then wear the underwear by itself for the rest of the day.

"Period knickers Fantastic product! Ideal for a young lady who has just started her periods, they last the whole time she is at school without the need to change. Will definitely be buying again and I recommend them to everyone!" Trustpilot Review

Is it OK to Wear Period Pants All Day?

Yes, it's OK to wear period pants all day. Unlike tampons, there's no risk of toxic shock and as long as the period pants are the correct absorbency for your flow and you don't leak, that's fine.

Can You Wear Period Pants for 12 Hours?

Yes, unlike tampons or pads, you can wear period pants for 12 hours.

We'd recommend looking for pants with maximum absorbency such as our high waisted bamboo fearless pants or bamboo period shorts to get 12 hours of usage (depending on your flow day).

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The Role of Wet Bags & Period Underwear

Wet bags are super helpful for managing your menstrual cycle when out and about. Our double wetbags have got separate pockets for carrying your pairs of period underwear - both clean and used.

They come in a range of different sizes and pretty patterns too, but most people find our small double wetbag is perfect for their needs.

You'll easily fit a pair of period pants in each pocket, plus some reusable intimate wipes too. If you're changing your pants at lunchtime, just pop the soiled ones into your wetbag and deal with them when you get home.

Our reusable period protection kits come with wetbags and intimate wipes, plus pants and pads to try them and see which works best for you.

Washing Period Underwear

If you've been wearing period underwear during the day, it's easy to sort out when you get home. Give it a rinse under the cold tap to remove most of the menstrual blood. Warm or hot water will 'set' blood stains.

Once you have a wash going on, give them a squirt with some stain remover and then wash at 30c maximum with the rest of your wash. It's fine to wash period pants with other clothes.

Air drying is always best for period pants. Tumble drying can impact the waterproof layer which is heat bonded to the pants.

We hope this has been helpful in explaining more about why using period pants doesn't necessarily mean you're carrying blood filled pants around all day. You might also be interested in these articles:

What are the disadvantages of period pants?

Can you prevent leaks on your period

How to choose period underwear

Common Period Myths - Busted


About the Author: Helen Rankin founded Cheeky Wipes, the original reusable wipes kit back in 2008 after disposable wipes caused her eczema to flare up. 4 kids later, internal period protection such as tampons or menstrual cups were no longer an option for her and she went on to develop their range of 'Simple Reusables' to include period pants, reusable panty liners and reusable sanitary pads.

The Cheeky customer services team pride themselves on providing honest, friendly advice and just LOVE to chat pee, poo and periods all day long, helping people make the switch to reusables! The Company was recognised for their hard work in developing environmentally friendly products with the Queens Award in Enterprise for Sustainable Development in 2021.