What are period undies, and do they work?

If you’re a person with a period or the parent to a tween, you’ve probably heard of period undies. They’re a relatively new menstrual product on the scene that provides a comfortable, discrete, non-invasive, sustainable option for period care.

So, what are period undies?

They are reusable underwear with additional layers in the crotch to absorb the period, similar to how a pad works. Different brands have different materials in the layers; however, they generally have an outside layer (often cotton, which is the outside of the underwear), a leak-proof layer, an absorbent layer and the inside layer (also cotton). Because of the different layers, they shouldn’t smell throughout the day.

Period undies teen nutrition

When to use period undies?

You can use period undies at any time! You can wear them on “just in case days” as peace of mind or when you’re on your period. It doesn’t matter if you have a heavy or light flow as period undies come in different flow or absorbency levels, in the same way pads and tampons do. So if you get the right undies for your flow, you’ll be good to go!  Many period undies will indicate on them or the packaging how many pads/tampons (or ml) they hold so you can work out which ones to use and how often you’ll need to change them. 

As you have to change them less often, they can be perfect for days out, and they aren’t as intimidating as tampons if you’re new to having a period.

Do period undies really work?

They sure do! The heavy period undies hold up to 4 regular tampons (20ml), so you can wear them on their own without worrying about a leak. When you’re finished, rinse them in cold water and wash them with your dark clothes as you usually would then let them air dry. I use a small wet bag to store them if I’m not ready to wash them.

Period Undie Recommendations

So how do you know what period undies are the best? As with other period products, this does come down to personal preference. Some period undies are thicker than others. You might find in some brands, you need to size up or down depending on the fit and style. I recommend buying a few different ones to test them out when they’re on sale.

Here are a few I’ve tried and tested:

MyNickerBot: These are my go-to for day 1, particularly at night. They’re very thin but have a high absorbency, and they don’t move around.  I find them to be true to size. Although I was gifted some, they are honestly my favourites for nights. 

WunderUnder: I really like the range of options for WunderUnder. I have a couple of different styles and flows. They’re all thin, and the absorbency is accurate. I use these mostly before I get my period on “just in case” days because you can hardly tell they’re there! Use Court15 for a cheeky discount. 

TOMS: The TOMS period undies are thicker than other ones I’ve tried but are still comfortable and true to size. I tend to reach for these on days 2-3 of my cycle, but I find I don’t often reach for them because of how thick they are.

Bonds: These are one of my favourites. They’re thinner than the TOMS but thicker than the WunderUnder and MyNickerBot. Although I don’t find them as snug as the MyNickerBot ones, they are very comfortable and good for days 2-3 when I’m not as heavy as day 1. If you’re a restless sleeper and want to use them for nights, you might need to size down.

ModiBodi: The Modibodi ones are very similar to the Bonds period undies but a little more snug, so I feel confident wearing them overnight. The absorbancy is good and they’re quite thin. I like wearing these for days 2-3 but also when I’m spotting at the end of my period.