Periods: They’re a fact of life that we’ve just gotta deal with. But tampons and pads don’t always have to be. If you’re ready to ditch single-use plastic and one-wear products — or at least cut down on ’em — there are plenty of women’s period underwear brands that make it easy (and comfy). And if you deal with incontinence or you’re experiencing maternity or postpartum leakage, they can help with that too. We’ve rounded some options you’ll wanna try, no matter your taste or flow sitch. And for more items to make your cycle more tolerable, check out our recs.
Period underwear looks just like regular underwear. Except it’s not: Most have multiple layers of microfiber polyester and are designed with moisture-wicking technology to absorb liquid and keep your skin dry. Depending on your flow, it’s best to change your period underwear every 12 hours, or as suggested by the manufacturer. Cleaning is easy. Every brand provides guidance for washing (i.e., some require a pre-rinse before tossing in a machine), but most pairs are okay to throw in the wash and voila: They’ll be just like new.
We love Thinx period underwear for so many reasons. Not only are they available in sizes XXS–4X, but they’re also machine washable, tailored to your flow, and just as comfortable as any other undies you might have in your drawer. The brand offers options to accommodate whatever your cycle throws at ya, from light to very heavy flow. The most absorbent styles can hold up to five tampons’ worth (or two and a half pads’ worth). For your lightest-flow days, the Thinx period underwear thong has you covered. Love a high-waist style? They’ve got those too. And when you’re done, just toss your Thinx into the wash and hang to dry. Consider your period revolutionized. ($25+, Thinx)
If you think you need to sacrifice feeling cute and confident during your period, you haven’t met Knix period underwear. In addition to nude shades for a range of skin tones, their underwear is available in tons of vibrant colors and patterns — plus lacy bikini, boyshort, and thong options. The brand also offers overnight reusable pads that can absorb as much as 20 (yes, 20) tampons’ worth. Time to sleep easy. ($23+, Knix)
Mesh designs? For period underwear? Groundbreaking. Saalt’s underwear was designed in Paris, and it shows. Try their lacy thong on light-flow days for some extra protection minus the VPLs or a high-waisted option for medium to heavier days. They’re all available in muted, neutral hues, made with a soft recycled poly fabric, and come in sizes XS–XXL. We’re also fans of the the brand's menstrual cups and discs. Peace of mind, we see you. ($29+, Saalt)
Calling all fans of Pink by Victoria’s Secret: Yup, their comfy undies have entered the chat. Their heaviest-flow absorbency pair can accommodate up to three tampons’ worth and fits like a boxer brief. Medium flow-ers will love the cotton hipster, in six different shades and patterns. Bonus: You can save a chunk of change with this three-pack featuring Pink period underwear in thong, hipster, and brief designs for just $30. ($16.50+, Pink)
We love all things Aerie — including their period underwear. Made with breathable cotton, the boy brief–cut styles have a regular rise and can absorb as much as two tampons’ worth of fluid. Choose from more neutral hues or a fun print. Psst…these should be pre-rinsed before tossing in the wash. ($13.96, Aerie)
Cater to your flow with two styles to choose from, both made with silky, smooth bamboo fabric. This lace-trimmed leak-proof bikini comes in multiple colors and is ideal for lighter-flow days, while this more absorbent period panty can tackle up to two tampons’ worth. ($14.90+, Amazon)
Pure Rosy’s lacy V bikini absorbs up to two light tampons’ worth and comes in three neutral colors. For a no-frills design and seamless fit, try the classic hipster. Or snag a mix-and-match bundle of three or four products to save up to 20%. The brand also partners with The Maggie Fund to give back to girls in Tanzania so they can continue to go to school when they have their period. Do good, feel good. ($29+, Pure Rosy)
See you never, stained bedsheets. The Sleeper Period. underwear has you covered with a capacity for up to 10 tampons’ worth of fluid. And the Heavy Period. Bikini can handle up to nine tampons’ worth. You can also snag these reusable pads and turn any underwear into period \underwear. Heavy flow, meet your match. ($12+, Period.)
In addition to its line of period underwear, ModiBodi also offers maternity and postpartum products — like briefs and a breastfeeding bra. (They’ve even got options for men who deal with incontinence or perspiration.) We love their undies’ fun colors and patterns, and the fact that they also carry protective swimwear and leggings. No more worries here. ($25+, ModiBodi)
Aisle period underwear are machine washable, available in sizes XXS–5X, and can absorb eight or more tampons’ worth with their booster insert. Go for their boxer briefs if you’re lounging at home or grab these full-coverage briefs and add on a booster for ultimate protection throughout the day. Psst…they also carry a handy stain remover, because, ya know, accidents happen. ($40+, Aisle)
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Skimm'd by Beck Diaz, Alicia Valenski, Emmy Favilla
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