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Why Are Period Pants So Expensive

Period pants are regularly sold for as much as £25 as you’ll see from our comparison of the top 10 UK best period pants brands. But why are some brands of period pants so expensive compared to others?

This is an easy one to answer. There are three reasons period pants are so expensive:

"I have been using cheeky period pants for a few months now and they have changed things for me. I can now sleep without worry and leaks and day time is a lot less worry too. I now have 7 pairs and will add a few more pairs to the collection as in colder months they do take a bit longer to dry." Claire, via Trustpilot

Period Pants are more expensive when sold through large retailers

Bodyform Pants - absorbency only in gusset

For example ‘Bodyform’ period pants, pictured above. Bodyform are best known for their single use period products such as pads and tampons. Bodyform have recently launched their own range of reusable period underwear priced at £25. These are sold mostly through large retailers such as Boots & Tesco.

Tesco and Boots will probably keep at least 50% of the sales price of these period knickers. That leaves Bodyform £12.50 from the sale of each pair of period knickers, less the cost of producing the pants.

The exceptions to this rule are large High St brands & Supermarkets who produce their own period pants ranges. Sainsburys, Primark & Marks & Spencer have ranges which start from 3 pairs for £16. 

"Massive fan of Cheeky Wipes. I started using their period pants a few years ago when hardly any other brands were doing them at an affordable price and I've stayed loyal ever since. Now have enough pairs to see me through each period with no fuss, no mess and no leaks!!! My latest purchase was for a pair of 'Sassy' pants after reading a review that they can also be used as bikini bottoms- perfect. Haven't yet tried them for that purpose but I don't expect I'll be disappointed!! Delivery is always prompt and efficient, many thanks Cheeky Wipes!!" Anita, via Trustpilot

Period Undies are more expensive when priced to include delivery

Modibodi period underwear is mostly sold via their own website in the UK rather than through other retailers. However they’re also on the more expensive end of the period pants prices. In their case, that’s because they offer ‘free delivery on all orders’.  

What that means is that they have included the costs of delivery into the price of the pants.  

Our article ‘is free shipping really free’ explains more about how this works.

Bamboo Period Shorts

"As an avid recycler and person who always looks for a eco alternative, I came across period pants years ago. I have very heavy periods and hated using conventional tampons and pads. Knowing that I was using so much plastic and disposable products didn't sit right with me, plus I felt that it wasn't a natural solution to use these products and it was working out very expensive. I then started using a moon cup and realised I needed something more as I often leaked, especially overnight.

I was so relieved to find Cheeky Pants, knickers that were not only comfy, looked good but above all worked! I still use the ones I first purchased and that was over 5years ago.

I was really pleased to see more styles added over the years and totally love the Bamboo Period Shorts which are so soft, comfy and provide me with a leak free night.

I now have a large collection of different styles of pants, all of which do the job 100% and means I can chose any outfit and not have to worry about unsightly leaks or feel conscious about bulging knicker lines etc!

They are also brilliant if like me, you suffer from a weak bladder. They are the perfect back up to stop an embarrassing situation happening, for example if I'm going out dancing with friends or playing with my children! Thank you Cheeky Wipes, my periods and life is so much less stressful thanks to you xx" Rachel via Trustpilot

Period knickers have more layers than regular knickers

We've said before that there's no 'magic unicorn dust' which makes period pants work. All period pants work in the same way, no matter what the marketing of any particular brand would have you believe. They consist of:

  • a layer next your skin to wick moisture away
  • an absorbent layer (or two) and then
  • a waterproofing layer to stop blood passing through to your clothes

How Period Pants Work

These additional layers of fabric add cost to the production of your period proof pants. This is why they cost more than regular knickers. Pants for heavier days normally have an extra layer of absorbency too. This is why these are generally more expensive than pants for medium or regular flow days.

The fabrics used in period knickers usually needs some stretch in it, which is why period knickers are rarely 100% cotton. They need at least 5% lycra to ensure a snug, stretchy fit. Saggy knickers = leaky knickers.

If for some reason you can't wear lycra or don't like it, but still would like to try reusable menstrual products, it's worth considering reusable pads.

Cheeky Pads come in 100% cotton panty liners and pads or bamboo plush. If your periods are super heavy (needing to change a pad every two hours) then these are brilliant alongside period pants.

"Very impressed with Cheeky period pants I bought 5 pairs of different styles to see which I would like best and all were comfortable and good value compared to other brands. After the first wear I don't worry about leaks. They have coverage all the way from back to front so are great for sleeping." Cerys, via Trustpilot

Which are the cheapest period pants?

Again, it’s worth having a read of our article on the top 10 period pants brands in the UK.

In general,  Primark are the cheapest period panties in the UK as they are priced at around £16 for 3 pairs. Their moisture wicking and absorbency is only in the gusset area. This is absolutely fine, depending on how heavy your flow is. If you only have light to medium flow periods or don’t wear them to sleep in, these should be fine for you.  

If you have heavier periods, or want to sleep in your period panties, look for a brand or style which have absorbency to the front and rear waistband. You’ll be able to relax knowing you are leakproof everywhere within that area!

"Really happy with my period pants. So much more affordable than other brands. They are really comfortable to wear, I have mid rise briefs for during the day and the shorts for night time. I sized up to a 12-14 when I'm usually a 10-12 but when I measured my best fitting pair of knickers they matched the cheeky sizes 12-14. Overall very happy I gave this brand a try." Deanna, via Trustpilot

We hope this has been helpful for you.

At Cheeky we aren’t the cheapest period pants, but we do offer: 

If you’ve enjoyed this article, you may also enjoy:

Can you wash period pants with other clothes?

Can you prevent leaks on your period?

Bestselling Period Pants:



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 sanitary pads and reusable makeup removing 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.