President, Seventh Generation Foundation
Tell your congressperson you have the right to know what’s in your tampons and pads. Period. TAKE ACTION!
It’s estimated that a woman will use up to 16,000 tampons in her lifetime. While some personal care routines are nice to set and forget, what I’m putting in the most intimate part of my body 16,000 times during my life, gets my full attention.
Yet, tampon manufacturers don’t have to fully disclose what’s in their products. They are not required to tell me, or you, what ingredients make up the components in their products. This includes chemicals that may be found in the applicator, the tampon core, and even chemicals used in fiber finishes. For pads it’s the same case: manufacturers aren’t required to fully disclose chemical additives used to treat fibers in the absorbent material, dyes or chemicals that may be used in fragranced products.
It is not uncommon for consumers to look for products made without fragrances. When companies list “fragrance” on their label, they could be referring to many different types of fragrance ingredients; there are many different chemicals can make up a fragrance. Unfortunately, when it comes to feminine care “cosmetics” – such as wipes and sprays – companies often only disclose the generic term “fragrance” on their ingredient list and don’t provide much detail beyond that. It’s even worse for tampons and pads, where there is no law requiring companies to disclose any ingredients at all, including fragrances.
The failure to disclose ingredients to consumers is concerning. Women have a right to know what is in the tampons and pads they use. Period.
Seventh Generation is proud to be partnering with Women’s Voices for the Earth, leading a movement that is fighting for a woman’s right to know what is in the pads and tampons she uses. We are teaming up to empower women to make informed decisions when it comes to the products we are putting in our bodies. We believe strongly that we have a right to avoid ingredients like fragrance – no matter how those ingredients are regulated. That’s why Seventh Generation and Women’s Voices of the Earth are excited that Congresswoman Meng is about to reintroduce a bill which requires the labeling of ingredients in tampons, menstrual pads and cups, and other medical devices used during menstruation.
We know that change will not come from our efforts alone. Join us in fighting for your right to know by asking your representative to support mandatory ingredient disclosure of feminine care products.
Ashley Orgain is Seventh Generation’s Director of Mission Advocacy & Outreach and mom to an active 5 year old. She’s also the President of the Seventh Generation Foundation and passionately believes that business can be a force for good in the world. When she’s not advocating for her community, she can be found playing hide and seek, bike riding around Burlington or enjoying local food.